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3 results returned for "Lauren Basil"

Tuesday, Nov 1st, 2016

Lauren Basil

8 Technology Trends to Look for in 2017

1. Artificial Intelligence

Artificial intelligence and advanced machine learning are composed of technologies and processes like deep learning and neural networks. Techniques are moving beyond rule-based algorithms to create systems that understand, learn, predict, adapt and potentially operate autonomously making smart machines appear "intelligent". As encouraging as AI and machine learning sounds, many people don't realize that as AI evolves, so does its criminal potential.

2. Intelligent Apps

Intelligent applications such as virtual personal assistants (VPAs) are making everyday tasks easier. VPNs and virtual customer assistants (which promise to enhance customer service and sales) should transform the nature of work and structure of the workplace.

3. Intelligent Things

Intelligent things, such as drones, autonomous vehicles and smart appliances, permeate the environment, but we expect to see a shift from stand-alone intelligent things to a collaborative intelligent things model. Intelligent things will leverage AI and ML to interact with humans and surroundings.Smartphones, smartwatches and smartglasses will partner with intelligent things and form a Smart Ecosystem.

4. Virtual and Augmented Reality

Immersive technologies, such as virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR), have captured the imagination of gamers and other consumers, but they will increasingly have business-to-business implications. We are still in the beginning stages of VR and AR and we will evolve dramatically through 2021. We will see rooms and spaces become active with things, and their connection through the mesh will appear and work in conjunction with immersive virtual worlds.

5. Digital Twin

Within three to five years, hundreds of millions of things will be represented by digital twins. A digital twin is a dynamic software model of a physical thing or system that relies on sensor data to understand its state, respond to changes, improve operations and add value. Organizations will use digital twins to proactively repair and plan for equipment service, to plan manufacturing processes, to operate factories, to predict equipment failure or increase operational efficiency, and to perform enhanced product development.

6. Blockchain Technology

Current blockchain technology hype is around the financial services industry, but a growing number of industries have joined the party. According to the Economist, a blockchain is a distributed database that maintains a continuously-growing list of records called blocks secured from tampering and revision. Each block is chained to the previous block, and the process is noted in a specially encrypted peer-to-peer network.

7. Conversational Systems

Currently the focus for conversational interfaces is focused on chatbots and microphone-enabled devices. Soon, they will move from chatbots to a broader digital mesh, which will move to an expanded range of endpoints that we will all interact with on a daily basis. These will work together to a growing extent. This will enhance ambient digital experience in the process.

8. Digital Technology Platforms

Digital technology platforms provide the basic building blocks for a digital business. There are five major focal points to enable digital capabilities and business models:

  • Information systems

  • Customer experience

  • Analytics and intelligence

  • IoT

  • Business ecosystems

Every organization will have some mix from across these five digital technology platforms. The platforms provide the basic building blocks for a digital business and are a critical enabler to become a digital business.

Tuesday, Oct 18th, 2016

Lauren Basil

8 Reasons Snapchat Spectacles Won't Last

Snapchat is attempting to stay relevant by introducing their first piece of hardware and changing their name to Snap Inc. Obviously, the Snapchat app is still their bread and butter, but they're exploring hardware as the next endeavor to further the company's influence. I don't see this as the next stepping stone in growing their company, but only time will tell.

That Ray Ban Vision

Let's be honest, if I'm going to buy myself a pair of sunglasses for $130, I'm going to buy myself a pair of Ray-Bans that look great and won't go out of style. Not Snapchat Spectacles that only have one frame available that may or may not look good.

Kim K.

The Spectacles can only be used outside, unless of course you think you're Kim K and wear sunglasses no matter where you are. But truthfully, the fact that they are sunglasses limits use to outdoors and if I were to buy something like Spectacles (for the purpose of recording), I would want to be able to use them wherever and whenever.

Lights Out

To limit the use of the glasses even more, half of anything worth documenting outside is going to happen while it's dark out. Snapchat Spectacles won't do you any good then.

Thirty Seconds

Realistically, that's not a lot of time. Not to mention, you have to prompt the glasses to continue recording past 10 seconds if you want a longer video. The glasses are set to end after 10 seconds in correspondence with the length of a snapchat video. So what happens if you record a longer video and want to upload to Snapchat?

Blurred Lines

Who's to say how good the quality of the recordings will be? We won't know until the hardware makes it's debut and users give their feedback. My guess is that I wouldn't want to use the video many other places outside of the Snapchat app because of the quality.

Sorry Android

Using an Android limits the user friendliness. You have to be connected to wifi in order to transfer the recordings onto your phone, unlike an iPhone user who can easily transfer via bluetooth.

Need an Endorsement?

So far, the only person endorsing Spectacles is the Snap Inc. CEO, Evan Spiegel. That doesn't instill very much confidence in potential buyers because of course the CEO should LOVE the product.

Creep it real

They have the ability to classify someone as creepy. I could be wearing the glasses and be recording my friends and they might not even realize it... or frankly, they may not want to be recorded!

The Spectacles give Snap Inc. a glimpse into the world of hardware, an unknown territory for the company thus far. I can't say this will be their breakthrough product, but it's a start and they will continue to improve the hardware just like any tech company would. Everyone has to start somewhere.

Thursday, Sep 1st, 2016

Lauren Basil

Now Arriving: An Upgraded Commute

I've always enjoyed driving. Getting into my car and being able to go wherever I wanted, whenever I wanted was a luxury I hadn't realized. That luxury was a far off memory when I turned in the convenience of driving for the overcrowded, always delayed New York subway system. Lucky me. I would shove my way towards the front of the crowd each morning in hopes of getting onto the first train to arrive, but rarely did that happen. After weaseling my way onto the train, I would stand there surrounded by hot, sweaty bodies and I would stare at my phone in hopes of avoiding any human interaction. I would even preload Snapchat stories or my Instagram feed knowing I would lose service and have no other option but to take my eyes off of the screen. Nothing about my commute added value to my life.

I realized my commute to and from work was going to be 400 minutes a week I would never get back. It was time wasted. I needed to take a different approach. Instead of allowing myself to mindlessly stroll through my Instagram feed, I had to figure out what I could to add value to my life or my career.

I was on a mission to find a few different approaches on how I could spend my time. Was it something that would prepare me better for my work day? Was it something to help my personal life and put my mind at ease? Or was is just simply reading the news? Honestly I didn't know. It might just depend on what mood I'm in.

I started off by considering work related things I could do or read to fill the time. I figured this was a win win for me. I would be occupied during the ride and it would benefit my career in one way or another. I found an app called Any.do that served as a task manager. The quick and dirty: I was able to keep track of my to-do list, prioritize tasks, schedule a time for each task and set long term goals and milestones relative to each task. This was something I previously would do every morning as soon as I sat down at my desk. Adding it to my morning commute cut that time out of my work day and got my brain moving before I walked into the office. Not only did I enjoy the fact that it cut an aspect out of my work-day, it also made me feel more prepared walking into the office. Of course, somedays I may not have been able to plan my whole day out while on the train, but most days I could and it made me more aware of what was critical that day.

Sure, somedays I didn't want to think about work at all before I got to the office. When I was feeling this way I would use an app called Headspace that allowed me to meditate anytime, anyplace, anywhere (even offline). The idea of meditating was completely foreign to me. I had never done it, felt the need to do it, or thought about doing it. It was a game changer, but it wasn't easy. It took practice to ignore the distractions of people talking, children crying and the constant voice saying "stand clear of the closing doors.

If I got the option to sit, I would take it (unless someone else was in need, of course) because this was the easiest way for me to meditate and drown out all other distractions. If not, I would try and go towards the back or the front of the car to avoid people going in and out of the doors at each stop. I would have to carefully plan how long my meditation would be based on when I was able to start it. This was important. If I was completely zoned in and the meditation took too long, that meant I was probably going to miss my stop. All in all, by doing this I got a moment of peace during a very hectic time. It allowed me to clear my head and refocus for the day ahead.

Mediation isn't for everyone. Some days it was not for me and these were the days that I turned to reading while on the train. During work I would come across articles that really peaked my interest, but most of the time I was in the middle of something else and didn't have the time to read it right then and there. It was inconvenient to copy and paste the link to the article and then email it to myself to I could then read it later on the train.

An app called Pocket came to my rescue. I downloaded it to my phone and computer immediately. When I was on my computer, it allowed me to simply click a button on my browser and save whatever article I was looking at to the app on my phone. I could do the same thing on my phone and then later access the article later on my computer. The best part about this app, it accounted for people not having service while on the subway. Every article is saved locally on the app so there is no need for service when wanting to go back and read. Sometimes I used this as entertainment reading and sometimes I used this to learn more about what was going on in my industry and what I could be doing better.

I found every method added value in a different way. I no longer felt as if I was wasting time, and hiding from any human interaction. I am not set in a routine of having to fill out my to do-list on Mondays or meditate on Thursdays, I figure out what I am in the mood for and what is the best use of my time that day. I never thought that apps on my phone would turn the worst 80 minutes a day into an extremely useful time for me to accomplish something. Even though we often hear that we should turn off our screens and be in the present, being present in the subway just leads to unhappiness, irritation, and sometimes seeing things we wish we could unsee. Figure out how you can best use your time commuting and I would bet money that "there's an app for that."