Gadgets are always the most welcomed around the workplace. They boost efficiency by performing certain tasks more rapidly but they have also been known to boost employee morale as some of them are quite fun to use. The following list might show you that some gadgets are most suited for the workplace than for anywhere else.

All-in-one PCs

These PCs have the advantage of being small and compact. They thus need little space. These are rapid computers and is a good investment if you are still attached to the desktop computer feel. These PCs come right at the middle of the taste of those who like tablets but still need desktop computers to work efficiently.

Self-stirring mugs

These mugs have the ability to create a stirring motion in your drink and thus it is the perfect gadget for the lazy tea or coffee drinker. Usually a button is located at the handle of the cup and once pressed, this spins the drink. This is perfect as people would not have go around and look for a spoon every time they want some drink with sugar or milk.

Facial recognition Time system

These biometric time clocks work by allowing people to clock in and out without necessarily having to show a badge or to touch the screen. The system would automatically compile time and attendance by identifying the biometric features of each employee.

Allied Time has operated in the time clock business since 1967. Their products are suited for companies wishing to integrate time systems in the workplace such as fingerprint time clocks and facial recognition system.


Most internet users are familiar with internet errors such as 404 Not Found and 403 Forbidden. However, there’s a new internet status code that is being proposed by Tim Bray, a developer advocate – for sites that are blocked for ‘legal reasons’.

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Bray, who has experience in developing key Internet standards, says, “I’ve been told by the chair of the IETF HTTP Working Group that he’ll give the proposal some agenda time at the next IETF meeting. It’s not a big proposal; shouldn’t take long.”

However, the recognition for the need of a new code first started when Terence Eden tried to access The Pirate Bay to no avail. When the site’s server denied his request, Eden then expressed the need for a new “HTTP code for censorship”, which not only caught on sparking discussions on Slashdot and Hacker News – until the time when Bray agreed to turn the ‘idea’ into reality.

With the code (451) taken aptly from Ray Bradbury’s novel, Farenheit 451, which deals with censorship, the proposal for the error code if approved, will not only furnish the details on the restriction but also mention which legal authority is imposing the restriction as well.

Bray also thinks that once official consensus is reached, there would little or no work on the engineering side in order for servers to provide “explanatory text with a 451”. In the end, of course, this effort is to ensure that when censorship does happen, it takes place out in the open and thus, provides pertinent information for users everywhere.


A question that has been asked about Twitter over the years is whether it is a technology or media company. The answer, in not being so simple, is simply a variation of both – according to Dick Costolo, CEO of Twitter.

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He explains further, in saying, “I think of us as a technology company because I think the future of the company is in building on an extensible platform that allows third-party developers and companies to add value to Twitter in a way that is accretive to Twitter and is accretive to our users. I don’t need to be or want to be in the content business.”

To support his statement, he also mentioned that is not in the content business because instead of having reporters or a newsroom, almost half of Twitter’s employees [1300 in number] are engineers who are working on building the technology around which Twitter runs on while also continuously creating new features for its users.

In fact, he also wishes to encourage companies and developers to build products and tools inside the Twitter platform – instead of creating external Twitter apps.

Speaking of new features, Twitter as a whole, is also evolving into something different by experimenting with media-like products some of which NASCAR and Olympics-branded pages. Twitter currently also has employees that help V.I.Ts such as athletes, media outlets, politicians and celebrities to use its features well. Thanks to this content available by V.I.Ts, “engagement rates on ads” are also great as opposed to traditional Web ads.

Yet even though Costolo still maintains the fact that Twitter has and always been a communication platform, experts think that these ‘experiments’ being conducted make Twitter more of a media company.


The new flagship iPhones and Samsung Galaxy devices are fast, bring the latest version of the OS and state of the art features. Unfortunately, these top-end phones also carry flagship level prices. For the majority of people, these phones are too expensive and do not justify the cost. The good news is that thanks to Android, there are phones that are both affordable and fast. Here is what to look for in a new budget-friendly phone:

Processor

Unless you buy a used iPhone, every other phone uses some version of the Qualcomm Snapdragon. The latest version is the 835. The new chip relegates last year’s already fast 820 chip to second tier phones. Both the 820 and the 810 are more than sufficient for most people’s needs.

Memory

Memory is one spec where people might have issues with what comes with the phone. The lowest spec phones come with 16GB of built-in storage. Fortunately, most Android phones have SD-Card slots for expansion. SD-Cards are much cheaper than buying phones with more storage.

Camera

The camera is the area where the newest phones have the biggest advantage. Mobile camera technology is progressing rapidly, especially on the software side. For the advanced post processing to work, the phone needs the latest processors. However, when the new Google Pixel is released, there should be a price drop of the original model, making one of the best mobile cameras more affordable.

These are the three main areas that should affect your choice of smartphone. There are others like OS updates, but such features are mostly exclusive to top-end phones.


robot women in technology background

robot women in technology background

Just a few years ago, artificial intelligence was the subject of science fiction. Now, not a single day goes by without some AI or machine learning driven advance. To be clear, when we talk about AI today, we refer to machine learning. It is using artificial intelligence to teach computers without any actual programming. Even in such a short span of time, it is already changing the way we do things.

Let us look at a few examples of machine learning implementation:

Sales – Platforms like salesforce.com are using machine learning to help sales teams target leads. Using data gathered from years of sales, the system could flag which leads have a higher probability of translating into sales.

Imaging – The primary example is of Google using machine learning to teach a computer how to upscale an image. The training used several thousand images. First, it analyzed the full-size image and then an image about a quarter of its size. It was then able to take any smaller image and produce a larger version with as much or more detail.

Language – Google also uses machine learning extensively on languages. The primary use so far has been in translation. For that to work, however, it required training on understanding the languages and then translating.

This is a small sample of how AI is becoming the next big thing in tech. So far, Google is in the lead with IBM not so far behind. Apple, Amazon, and Microsoft are all building out machine learning capability.

 


Article written by InterTechOverload, latest articles & news about technology, internet and new media

The smart home and internet of things are the only things anyone can talk about these days. The tech press believes that it is going to be the future when in fact you can already have a fully connected home today. Although it is not a cheap conversion, it is now more affordable than a few years ago and can be started for a few hundred dollars.

The first step is to look at what you want to be able to do. Here are a few use cases that you might want to use:

Security


Smart home devices can also be used for security. The primary devices used here, in addition to a hub would be door and windows sensors, proximity sensors and lights. All doors and windows can have sensors that can trigger alarms. There are even sirens that can be connected and triggered. Proximity sensors can trigger external lights on motion and cameras.

Safety

Another use case is night time safety. Proximity sensors in corridors can be set to switch lights on when activated at night. The same goes for a trip the toilet at night, open the door and the lights will come automatically. These same sensors can also switch the lights off after a period of inactivity.

Future Home

The final and most attractive use case is for a fully connected future home experience. The lights come on when you are close by. The air conditioning comes on at specific temperatures close to when you will enter the house. Too cold? The heater comes and keeps the house at a nice toasty temperature. This and so much more is possible with today’s technology.

 


Systems administrators spend a lot of their time attending to periodic tasks. These tasks range from preventative maintenance to simple report generation. None of this is a problem until there is a critical issue that needs attention. The time spent on resolving any issues is the time that cannot be spent attending to these periodic tasks. The simplest and most efficient way is to automate as much of the regular tasks as possible. Here are two options for automating system administration tasks:

PowerShell

In a mostly Windows environment, PowerShell is a powerful scripting language that will allow most common tasks. There are modules that add support for Active Directory, Windows Server Backup, DHCP, DNS, and almost every service provided by Microsoft. The version of PowerShell varies depending on the version of Windows, although upgrades are available for older systems.

Python

Python is a popular programming language among systems administrators. There are courses specific to systems and network automation, which will teach you what you need specifically for those environments. Many systems have built-in API’s (application programming interfaces). You can use these API’s to extract data from the system without any human intervention. This way you can combine data from several systems to produce reports or dashboards.

These are the two most common languages used when it comes to automating systems tasks. It is even possible to combine both. When set on a schedule, it is as simple as setting and forgetting, freeing up time for other more important tasks.