Weekly Round Up 1/19/18

 

 


I love my Nook and my iPad for reading, nothing will ever beat the smell of a new book.

How Technology Is (and Isn’t) Changing Our Reading Habits

 


White Collar Automation for the win!!

7 Technology Trends That Will Dominate 2018

 


They can’t stop the Government from deporting people who’ve been here for 30 years, but the Tech industry wants to focus on the spouses of the dreamers?

Tech Industry Urges U.S. to Keep Work Permits for H-1B Spouses.

 

Wait, what?
Microsoft tops Thomson Reuters top 100 global tech leaders list.

 

They’re gonna cure us of our iPhone addiction too…

‘Time well spent’ is shaping up to be tech’s next big debate.

 

They can’t agree on a budget and our kids are eating Tide Pods, but yeah, Washington is gonna close the digital divide.
Washington’s next big tech battle: closing the country’s digital divide.

 

 

Preach!!
Sundar Pichai Google CEO Sundar Pichai: Digital technology must empower workers, not alienate them.

 

 

A nice idea but, I draw the line at having to but my dog an iPhone.
Pet tech can entertain some 4-legged family members.

Tales from the Orchad: Apple seems to have forgotten about the whole ‘it just works’ thing.

 

By Adrian Kingsley-Hughes of ZDNet

This is the phrase that Steve Jobs trotted out year after year to describe products or services that he was unveiling. The phrase expressed what Apple was all about — selling technology that solved problems with a minimum of fuss and effort on the part of the owner.

Well, Steve is now long gone, and so it the ethos of “it just works.”

2017 was a petty bad year for Apple software quality. Just over the past few weeks we seen both macOS and iOS hit by several high profile bugs. And what’s worse is that the fixes that Apple pushed out — in a rushed manner — themselves caused problems.

• A serious — and very stupid — root bug was uncovered in macOS
• The patch that Apple pushed out for the root bug broke file sharing for some
• Updating macOS to 10.13.1 after installing the root patch rolled back the root bug patch
• iOS 11 was hit by a date bug that caused devices to crash when an app generated a notification, forcing Apple to prematurely release iOS 11.2
• iOS 11.2 contained a HomeKit bug that broke remote access for shared users

And this is just a selection of the bugs that users have had to contend with over the past few weeks. And it’s not just been limited to the past few weeks. I’ve written at length about how it feels like the quality of software coming out of Apple has deteriorated significantly in recent years.

Now don’t get me wrong, bugs happen. There’s no such thing as perfect code, and sometimes high-profile security vulnerabilities can result in patches being pushed out that are not as well tested as they could be.

I also recognize that Apple has changed almost beyond recognition since Steve was on stage at keynotes telling us how stuff “just works.” Apple’s products are far more complex, the company is selling stuff at a rate that it could have once only dreamt doing, and the security landscape is totally different, and vulnerabilities now put hundreds of millions of users at risk.

But on the other hand, Apple isn’t some budget hardware maker pushing stuff out on a shoestring and scrabbling for a razor-thin profit margin. Apple’s gross profit margin is in the region of 38 percent, a figure that other manufacturers can only dream of.

And Apple is rolling in cash.

All this makes missteps such as the ones that users have had to endure feel like Apple has taken its eye off the ball, and that it’s perhaps putting increased effort into developing and selling new products at the expense of keeping users happy.

Apple owes a lot of its current success to its dedicated fanbase, the people who would respond to Windows or Android issues with “you should buy Apple, because that stuff just works.” Shattering that illusion for those people won’t be good in the long term, which is why I think Apple needs to take a long, hard look at itself in the run up to 2018 and work out what’s been going wrong and come up with ways to prevent problems from happening in the future.

Do you think Apple has dropped the ball when it comes to the finer details of their software? Sound off in the comments below!

WIT: We all must think about ‘balance of tech’ – Randi Zuckerberg

 

By Peter Hamilton of the Irish Times

“Nobody ever came up with an idea that was going to change the world when they were 24/7 glued to their phone”, Randi Zuckerberg, an entrepreneur and former Facebook employee, has told delegates at a conference.

Speaking at the Pendulum Summit, a conference in Dublin’s convention centre, Ms Zuckerberg said that “we all have to think about the balance of tech”, warning that while it can do incredible things, it doesn’t spur entrepreneurship by itself.

An older sister of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, Randi began her career in digital marketing at advertising agency Ogilvy before joining the social media giant in its infancy.

She told the conference about the company’s ‘hackathon’ events, where “every few months everyone at the company was invited to pull an all nighter…there was one rule, you could not work on something that was related to anything you did on your day job.”

Ms Zuckerberg herself came up with the Facebook Live idea at one of those Hackathons. While the first ever transmission was only watched by two people the idea ultimately became a success after Katy Perry launched a world tour on the platform and “politicians from around the world saw an opportunity to speak directly to their constituents” with Barack Obama becoming an early adopter.

Ms Zuckerberg quit the company after the successes of Facebook Live because of a “complicated relationship with both tech and Silicon Valley”.

“On one hand I loved being part of a company like Facebook that was changing the world, I loved being in Silicon Valley where everywhere you walk people are talking about solving big problems. I hated being the only woman in the room for 10 years,” she said.

“Even today, my best advice for young women going into technology, is to have a mans name like Randi.

“I had a growing complicated relationship between the huge digital divide we see in the world. We live in a world today where some of us have amazing access to technology and advice and business and speakers. All of us in this room we are so lucky and then right in our back yard’s are millions of people who don’t even have WiFi access, and millions of people who are going to be left behind from this new economy and for me, I had trouble sitting with that.

“Some of the very tools we were working on and creating, they were used very differently by the world then how we dreamed they’d be used. For example, I remember waking up during the time of the Arab Spring and feeling so proud, waking up every morning thinking, wow, we’ve given a voice to everyone.

“And then I woke up the day after this last election in the United States and thought, wow, we gave a voice to everyone. It’s complicated,” she added.

Ms Zuckerberg is now the chief executive of Zuckerberg Media, a company she founded, and has just finished writing 30 episodes of a television show based on a children’s book she has written called “Dot”.

App of the Week: Siri

 

 

by Sarah Jacobsson Purewal, Jason Cipriani of CNet

There’s a lot you can do with Apple’s virtual assistant — and some things you can’t do. For example, while Siri can send texts, search Twitter, and open up your front-facing camera, she can’t adjust your device’s ring volume (something OK Google can do). Complicating the matter, Siri doesn’t work exactly the same way on a Mac as she does on iOS.

Apple hasn’t published a complete list of Siri commands, though you can find a fairly comprehensive guide to Siri’s abilities inside Siri herself (open up Siri and say “Help” to see what she can do). So here’s our unofficial guide to Siri commands and questions. Keep in mind, some of the commands will work on a Mac, while some fall flat.

Hey Siri

There are a few ways to get Siri’s attention.
• Press and hold the home button to activate Siri and issue her a command or ask her a question. iPhone X users will need to hold in the side button
• If you’re using Apple’s Earpods, press and hold the center button to activate Siri and issue her a command or ask her a question.
• If you’re using Apple’s AirPods, double-tap on either ‘pod to activate Siri and issue her a command or ask her a question.
• If you have Hey Siri enabled and an iPhone 6 or earlier, say “Hey, Siri” when your iPhone is plugged in and charging, followed by a command or question. Those who own an iPhone 6S or newer, “Hey, Siri” works regardless if the phone is plugged in.
• On a Mac, you can create a dedicated keyboard shortcut to bring up Siri, use a trick to enable “Hey Siri,” or click on the Siri icon in the menu bar to issue a command or ask a question.

The basics

• Call or FaceTime someone. Ex.: “Call Sarah,” or “FaceTime Mom.”
• Start a call on speakerphone. Ex.””Call Mom on speaker.”
• Call an emergency number. Ex.: “Call 911,” or “Call the fire department.”
• Check voice mail. Ex.: “Do I have any new voice mail?” or “Play the voice mail from Mom.”
• Text someone. Ex.: “Tell [name] I am on my way,” or “Tell [name] I am going to the store.”
• Send an email. Ex.: “Send email to [name] about [subject] and say [message].”
• Hear your messages or emails read aloud. Ex.: “Read my new messages,” or “Check email.”
• Set a timer. Ex.: “Set the timer for 10 minutes.”
• Check the weather. Ex.: “What’s the weather like today?” or “Do I need an umbrella?”
• Check stocks. Ex.: “What’s Apple’s stock price?” or “Where’s the NASDAQ today?”
• Conversions (of all kinds). Ex.: “How many cups are in a quart?” or “How many dollars are in a Euro?” or “How many pounds are in a stone?”
• Calculate tips. Ex.: “What is a 20 percent tip on $68?”
• Solve math problems. Ex.: “What is 234 divided by 6?” or “What is the square root of 16?”

Phone and settings

• Take a picture.
• Take a selfie.
• Turn on/off [Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Cellular Data, Airplane Mode, Do Not Disturb, Night Shift]
• Increase/decrease brightness.
• Open [app].
• Designate contacts as relationships. Ex.: “My mom is Sandy Jacobsson,” or “Timmy Jacobsson is my brother.” Once a relationship is established, you can say relationships instead of names (e.g., “Call my brother,” instead of “Call Timmy Jacobsson”).
• Adjust music volume. Ex.: “Adjust volume to 80 percent,” or “Turn the volume up/down.”
• “How much free space to I have?” (Mac specific)
Scheduling and reminders
• Schedule or cancel a meeting. Ex.: “Schedule a meeting with [name] tomorrow at 11:30 a.m.” or “Cancel my 5 p.m. appointment.”
• What appointments do I have tomorrow?
• Set location-aware reminders. Ex.: “Remind me to remember my keys when I leave,” or “Remind me to feed the dog when I get home.”
• Find out the date and day of the week of holidays. Ex.: “When is Easter?” or “When is Labor Day?”
• Set alarms. Ex.: “Set an alarm for 1 a.m.” or “Set an alarm for six hours from now.”
• Delete/turn off all alarms. Ex. “Delete all alarms” or “Turn off all alarms.”
• Check the number of days between dates. Ex.: “How many days until October 6?” or “How many days between April 3 and June 16?”
• Find out what time it is in another city. Ex.: “What time is it in Tokyo?”

Search

• Define [word].
• What is a synonym for [word]?
• What’s the etymology of [word]?
• Find photos. Ex.: “Show me photos from last week,” or “Show me my selfies,” or “Show me photos from Tokyo.”
• Search Twitter. Ex.: “What’s Kylie Jenner saying,” “Search Twitter for [keyword],” or “What’s trending on Twitter?”
• Find specific notes or emails. Ex.: “Find my note about [keyword],” or “Find emails about [keyword].”
• Find your friends (if you have “Find My Friends” set up). Ex.: “Where is Ron?” or “Who is near me?”
• Find pictures of [keyword].
• Find apps. Ex.: “Get the Twitter app,” or “Search the App Store for word games.”
• Search for Word/PDF/PowerPoint/etc. in my Download/My Documents/etc. folder. Ex.: “Show all PowerPoint presentations in my school folder.” (Mac specific)

Navigation

• Take me home.
• What’s traffic like on the way home?
• Find [driving, walking, transit] directions to [destination].
• How do I get to [destination] by [walking, bus, bike, car, train, etc.]?
• Where is the nearest [business type]?

Entertainment

  • Sports updates. Ex.: “Did the Tigers win?” or “What was the score the last time the Tigers played the Yankees?” or “How did the Tigers do last night?”
  • Info about a sport or sports team. Ex.: “What basketball games are on today?” or “Get me college football rankings” or “Show me the roster for the Red Wings.”
  • Find movie times and locations. Ex.: “What’s playing at Regal L.A. Live?” or “What are some movies playing near me?” or “Is [movie name] playing near me?”
  • Find out what song is playing in the room (through Shazam). Ex.: “What song is this?”
  • What’s the synopsis of [movie name]?

Music and Apple Music

  • Basic controls: Play, pause/stop, skip/next, play previous song.
  • Play [artist] or [song name] or or [album].
  • “Play some music” to begin a custom Apple Music radio station 
  • ‘Like’ the song you’re listening to. Ex.: “Like this song.”
  • Shuffle my playlist.
  • Choose the next song. Ex.: “After this, play Wildest Dreams.”
  • Find chart-toppers from certain years. Ex.: “Play the top songs from 2013.”
  • Play songs that are similar to the one you’re listening to. Ex.: “Play more like this.”
  • What song is this?
  • Buy this song.

Travel

  • Check flight status. Ex.: “Check flight status of [airline and flight number]”
  • Find restaurants and make reservations. Ex.: “What’s a good Chinese restaurant near me?” or “Make a reservation at Baco Mercat for 7 p.m.” or “Find a table for six in San Francisco tonight.”
  • Find a business’ hours. Ex.: “How late is [business name] open?” or “Is [business name] open right now?”
  • Learn about the area you’re in. Ex.: “What’s the nearest museum?” or “Where am I?” or “What bridge is this?”

Translation

Starting with iOS 11, Siri can translate five different languages: French, German, Mandarin, Spanish and Italian. Using the new feature is as easy as asking, “How do you say [word or phrase] in [language]?” For example: “How do you say where is the bathroom in French?” 

Siri will then read the translation out loud. You’ll see the text on the screen alongside a play button, which you can use to replay the translation. 

Third-party apps

Beginning with iOS 10, developers have been able to integrate their apps into Siri. Meaning, you can use voice commands to do things such as send WhatsApp messages, request an Uber or send money via Square Cash. You can view and customize which apps are granted access to Siri on your device under Settings > Siri > App Support. 

  • Pay Joe 10 dollars with Square Cash/PayPal/etc.
  • Send a message using WhatsApp/LinkedIn/Skype/WeChat/etc.
  • Call me an Uber/Lyft/etc.
  • Show me photos in [app name].
  • Show me pins/creations in [app name].

 

Random tips and tricks

• Find out what airplanes are currently flying above you. Ex.: “What airplanes are above me?”
• Roll a die or roll two dice.
• Flip a coin.
• What is your favorite color?
• Tell me a joke.
• What does the fox say?
• Knock knock.
• Who’s on first?
• Why did the chicken cross the road?
• What is zero divided by zero?
• Learn how to say my name.

Do you have a favorite Siri command? Share it with us in the comments below!

How to: add a fancy email signature on iPhone and Mac

 

By Charlie Sorrel of Cult of Mac

You already know that you can add a signature to your outgoing emails in the Mail app on iOS and macOS, but did you know that you can make that signature fancy? And I mean, really fancy. You don’t just have to put your email address or phone number in there in regular text. You can add any kind of text you like, complete with colors and cool fonts. You can even add an image.

Add a basic email signature in iOS

 

First off, lets see where you add your signature. In iOS, head to the Settings app, and scroll down the left column until you hit Mail. Tap that, and scroll to the last entry in the list: Signature. Tap that, and type in whatever you like.

And that’s it. Whatever you type there will be used as your email signature on all outgoing emails. But anything you type there will also be pretty basic. You can use bold, italic and underlined text by tapping on a word to activate the black bubble popover and choosing one of the text options in there, but that’s it. To make a fancy signature, you need to create it elsewhere and paste it into this box.

One thing to note right away. Any email signatures you create are for that device only. Signatures don’t sync via iCloud, so you must copy the signature between devices if you want it to appear consistently. Thanks to iCloud’s Universal Clipboard, it’s easy to copy something on one device, and then paste it on another. For instructions, check out our in-depth tutorial on iCloud’s Universal Clipboard.

Getting fancy with Pages

 

For gussying up your text, a great tool is Apple’s own Pages, which you probably already have on one of your devices. If not, it’s free to download and use. To make a signature, let’s create a new, blank document. To do this, open Pages, then tap the plus sign in the top corner. Pick Blank from the templates, and you’re ready to go.

First, type in your information. Keep it short, because nobody cares about that Werner Herzog quote you like so much. You mightn’t bother with your email address either, because if you’re corresponding with someone via email, they probably already know it.

Here’s mine:

Dull, right? Let’s fancy it up a little. To access Pages’ text-styling tool, tap the little paintbrush icon. This works the same on Mac, iPad and iPhone versions of Pages, although the layout varies depending on screen size.

Here you see how I changed the typeface, size and color of my initials. I picked Helvetica Thin, upped the size to 30pt, and changed the color to a nice near-fuchsia. I also switched the rest of the text to Helvetica Thin, and fiddled with sizes.

 

 

Add and style links

You may also notice that I removed the underline from the Cultofmac.com link. In Pages, any text can be turned into a link by tapping (or clicking) on it, and choosing Link from the contextual menu. From there, a popover panel appears, letting you customize the URL and the display name. You can also make the link into an email, or a bookmark link. Many email apps will automatically recognize links anyway, so you may not want bother with this.

 

To remove the underline from a link, just tap the already-highlighted Underscore button in the text panel (the paintbrush panel that we already used to change fonts). This works great until you paste it into Mail, whereupon the underline is added back.

‘Export’ your text as a signature

Now, all you need to do to is select your new signature, copy it, then switch to the Signature section in the Mail settings we discussed above. Just paste the signature in, and you’re good to go. To add the same signature on other devices, copy the text, pick up the other device and paste it. It’s easy.

Pictures in email signatures

You may be tempted to add an image to your signature. If you want to, paste it into the signature field, just like we did with text. But remember, not all email apps will display it properly. Some may show an attachment icon instead of putting your cool logo inline with the rest of your signature. Some may fail to show it altogether. You never know. It may be better, then, to use smart typography to do the job for you.

And there you have it. A smart, typographical signature that should survive most mail clients, but that will respect the settings of the recipient, falling back gracefully on plain text if that’s how they choose to read email. Everyone is happy.

Do you have a best practice for capturing a fancy email signature? Tell us about it in the comments below!

Tips & Tricks: This iOS trick no one told you about might keep you from losing your mind

 

By Zack Epstein of BoyGeniusReport

When Apple released the first iPhone over 10 years ago in 2007, one of the phone’s main draws was its simplicity. The biggest smartphone platforms at the time were Symbian, Windows Mobile, and BlackBerry OS, and they were each overcomplicated messes. “iPhone OS,” as it was called at the time, was a breath of fresh air that made using a smartphone fast and easy. That theme continued to be one of the iPhone’s biggest selling points for years, especially when Apple first introduced the App Store. Installing third-party software on smartphones had previously been a nightmare that involved hunting apps down on websites, downloading them to a PC, and installing them using a sync utility. How crazy does that sound by today’s standards?

As Apple continued to add more and more new features to the iPhone over the years, much of the platform’s simplicity was lost. Now there are so many features that it’s impossible to remember even half of them. It’s gotten to the point where some less savvy iPhone owners aren’t even aware that key features exist. There’s no easy solution, but we always try to share useful tips and tricks as we come across them, and we’ve got a great one for you today.

Some functions in iOS are more user-friendly than others, and rearranging apps definitely isn’t one of the better ones. The concept is simple enough — long-tap on any app icon to enter “jiggle mode,” then drag and drop icons wherever you want — but it’s messy and frustrating in practice. Move too close to a corner and the page will accidentally switch, and forget about trying to drop an app into a folder. Just look at the video from this post on Reddit:

 

Thankfully, there is a better way and it might just keep you from losing your mind while trying to move apps into folders. As a commenter in that thread explained, it’s simple but it involves two hands. As you tap and hold on one app to drag it around, simply tap on the folder you’d like to drop the app in with a finger on your other hand. The folder will open while you’re still holding the app icon, and you can easily let go to place it in the folder.

This trick works on the iPhone and on the iPad, of course, and it’ll save you a ton of frustration.

Do you have a favorite trick for iOS that keeps you from pulling your hair out? Tell us about it in the comments below!

Weekly Round Up 1/12/18

 

 

Again?! Steve Jobs may have been a tyrant when it came to the details but, this sh*t rarely happened on his watch.

Yet another macOS High Sierra bug: Unlock App Store system preferences with any password.


With all the Technology surrounding these guys, you’d think they’d pay better attention to the world around them. I mean, I know they live in a bubble, but c’mon!
Data Sheet—Darkness Hits CES Amid the Tech Backlash.

 

And my hometown made the list! Charlotte NC for the win!
Tech’s New Hotbeds: Cities With Fastest Growth In STEM Jobs Are Far From Silicon Valley.

Wait, does this mean no more Jitterbug?!
Tech for the elderly is a growing area, but founders should think more about whether their gadget will be used.

 

I think Steve would be more worried about the lack of leadership in his company right now, actually.
The ‘father of the iPod’ says tech addiction would worry Steve Jobs if he were alive today.

 

What, bribes don’t work on Congress anymore? Since when?!
Tech executives join more than 100 business leaders calling on Congress to move quickly on DACA.

 

You know, when I was a kid, I remember my parents writing to Captain Kangaroo and asking him to cut his programming in half so I’d watch less. SMH
Kids and Smartphones: Should Tech Companies or Parents Set the Limits?

Tales from the Orchard: Apple’s Michigan Avenue retail store has a major design flaw.

 

How the Apple Store in Chicago became a dangerous place this Winter.

 

 

By Mark Kauffman of Mashable

Ominous, high-hanging icicles have turned Apple’s sleek, MacBook-inspired waterfront store in Chicago into a potentially perilous environment.

Apple has cordoned off, with caution tape and signage, vulnerable areas where the sharp ice could fall. Chicago blogger Matt Maldre first spotted the architectural mishap, brought on by this winter’s severe Arctic blast.

The architectural company Foster + Partners designed the carbon fiber roof to mimic a flat MacBook Pro laptop. They even emblazoned an Apple logo atop the roof — just like on the actual devices.

The building might be a design marvel — with pure glass walls and svelte steel columns — but it apparently lacks much winter utility, notably for a place specifically designed for public gathering, conducive to a social, urbanite atmosphere.
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At the Apple event in September, Apple’s senior vice president of retail, Angela Ahrendts, said forthcoming Apple Stores would be “town square” spaces.

But perhaps not in winter. There are no gutters to catch falling snow or ice. Nor is the roof sloping, so icicles that do form aren’t dangling from 20 some feet overhead.

Indeed, it’s common for icicles to form on buildings in Chicago, especially during these freeze events; so the Apple store isn’t uniquely forming sharp icicles. But come winter, this particular “town square” can become a precarious place.

What are your thoughts on Apple’s “Design over Function” dilemma with it’s newly designed Retail stores? Tell us about it in the comments below!

WIT: The top keynote speakers at CES are all men. Here’s why that’s a problem

 

By Monica Chin of Mashable

CES, the world’s largest electronics trade show, kicks off next week, with the first official events starting Sunday, Jan. 7. At the conference, attendees will get a glimpse of the year’s newest technology, hear keynote speeches from top industry leaders, and try futuristic products. 

But this year will be marred by a glaring weakness in the CES lineup: The top keynote speakers (those who will address the conference audience alone, rather than as part of a panel) are all male, and five of the six are white. 

Needless to say, people are outraged. 

In fairness to the Consumer Technology Association, the group that organizes the conference, it did add women to the CES lineup in other places. 

The organization’s website now lists two female panelists and a female moderator on its “C Space Keynote” and a female moderator on its Mobile Innovation panel. Karen Chupka, CTA’s senior vice president of CES and corporate business strategy, is listed as presenting CTA’s keynote along with Gary Shapiro, CTA’s president and CEO.

However, the website only states that Shapiro will be giving the address. 

But all of the women CTA added to its lineup are panelists or panel moderators — none are giving keynotes themselves. 

The lack of diversity among the conference’s top speakers is frustrating in its own right. This conference comes just months after the genesis of the #MeToo campaign in which thousands of women spoke out about sexual harassment in their workplaces. It also comes after the explosion of stories such as Susan Fowler’s harrowing expose of her mistreatment at Uber and a Google engineer’s public claim that women are biologically inferior — both of which cast a bleak light on the state of diversity in the tech industry. The perspective of a woman is important if not necessary to creating a comprehensive picture of the industry today. 

Additionally, diversity is good. Plenty of research indicates that companies have better growth, better equity, less debt, higher quality products, and are millions more valuable when women hold top leadership positions. Surely, seeing female executives deliver keynotes at the world’s largest electronics show can only inspire more women to seek such positions, and empower their companies to hire female executives. 
But everyone makes mistakes. What’s more infuriating is CTA’s defense of its all-male lineup. The organization claimed the lack of diversity was not that much of a problem and not its fault. 

“Female business leaders are critical to the success of our show and the entire tech sector, and their position at CES extends beyond the keynote stage to our conference sessions and entrepreneurs exhibiting across the show floor,” reads Chupka’s response to criticism on CTA’s blog. 

I shouldn’t need to explain why this response is insufficient for anyone that actually cares about equal opportunity. It’s great that we have a lot of women in executive roles, but the opportunities to are still too few and far between, and it’s a symptom of broader societal discrimination. 

Secondly, CTA claims it’s not to blame. “To keynote at CES, the speaker must head (president/CEO level) a large entity who has name recognition in the industry,” Chupka says in her blog. “As upsetting as it is, there is a limited pool when it comes to these positions… the tech industry and every industry must do better.”

Yes, CES. These industries must do better. But so must you.

There are clearly many, many women in the tech industry who fit this description.

Kristin Lemkau, JP Morgan Chase’s chief marketing officer, tweeted a list of 32 women who fit CTA’s criteria that she claims took “less time than it took to drink coffee,” including IBM CEO Ginny Rometty, A&E Networks CEO Nancy Dubuc, and Mattel CEO Margo Georgiadis. Twitter responders added dozens more. 

 

Amazing women innovators in tech and media who would slay any keynote anywhere. Came up with these in less time than it took to drink coffee. In no particular order…
Other ideas?

CTA cannot simultaneously wave its hands and claim that they are tied. Claiming that minorities aren’t getting hired because they just aren’t qualified was academia’s answer to this same criticism last century. Since then, we’ve grown up to realize that in many instances, diversity outweighs meritocracy. If CTA can’t find a single female CEO willing to deliver a keynote, it should change its requirements. 

While women make up less than 20 percent of computer science programs in the U.S. and UK, they make up around 50 percent of those programs in India, Malaysia, and Nigeria. Meanwhile, there’s a lot of evidence to suggest that hiring is incredibly sexist.

In other words, a woman needs to do more work to get to the top jobs that CES covets so dearly than a man of equal aptitude — and therefore, a man who might give a keynote equally well. 

Organizers of worldwide events can scramble to find female speakers to put on panels for the sake of diversity alone, and that’s a start. But it’s not enough. These organizers need to realize that the most capable women in their industries, women who will deliver keynotes that will blow their minds, might be barred from the top spots because we live in a society where barriers exist to women attaining those positions.

CES’ current standards bar incredibly qualified individuals who could make the conference better. 

CTA, if you want the best possible keynotes at CES, find women. If 100 women can’t make it, reach out to 100 more. If there are no female CEOs of global companies, look at smaller companies. If you need to stick with big companies, look at COOs, CMOs, CTOs, CBOs. Most importantly, don’t pretend there’s nothing you can do to solve the problem, and don’t pretend it’s already solved. 

It doesn’t just hurt women when a lineup of keynote speakers is entirely men. It hurts your conference, tech companies, and all of us. 

What do think of the lack of female representation in the Keynote speakers selected for CES this year? Sound off in the comments below!

App of the Week – Tripit

 

 

By Jeff Richardson of iPhone J.D.

 

Review: TripIt Pro — notification of travel delays and cancellations, and other travel assistance

 

I’ve been using the free TripIt service for many years. I reviewed TripIt back in 2013, and while the service and the app have improved since then, the basic idea is the same. When you make a travel reservation and receive the email from the airline, hotel, rental car agency, train, etc., you simply forward that email to TripIt. The service recognizes you from your email address, reads and understands the content of those emails, and prepares an online itinerary for your trip. With the free TripIt app on your iPhone (or iPad), all of your travel info is in one place. Thus, if you are in the middle of your trip and need to find the name or address of your hotel, or a reservation number, everything is in one place in the TripIt iPhone app. It is a like a virtual travel agent which provides all of the core basic features. I love the service and recommend it to everyone.

 

TripIt Pro costs $49 a year, and it adds premium services to look out for you before and during your travel, much like a more sophisticated travel agent might do. The company gave me a free demonstration account earlier this year so that I could try it out, and I’ve used the service in connection with several trips over the Summer, Fall and Winter of 2016. I enjoyed the service, and I think that it is worth it for any frequent traveler. Here are the key features of the service.

Alerts

 

TripIt Pro constantly monitors your travel reservations, and if anything changes, you are notified immediately. The value of this service to you will of course depend upon whether anything goes wrong during your travel. If something does go wrong, TripIt Pro is incredibly valuable and the service can pay for itself with just one alert.
In June of 2016, this feature was incredibly valuable for me. I was traveling to Miami along with many other attorneys at my law firm, and I was on an early morning flight. When I woke up, I saw an email from TripIt Pro alerting me that my direct flight had been cancelled.

The email gave me a link to get a list of alternative flights, and included phone numbers for the airline to make changes.  Even though the airline itself never sent me a notification of the cancellation, TripIt Pro gave me the information that I needed to call and book an alternative flight.  The alternative flight was inconvenient — to go from New Orleans to Miami, I had to first fly to Dallas — but at least I was able to (barely) make my meeting in South Florida later on that day.  Many of my partners didn’t find out about the cancellation until they got to the airport, at which time many of the alternative flights were already taken, and some of them missed the meeting entirely.

TripIt Pro gives you other flight alerts as well.  It tells you when it is time to check in — something that most airlines tell you too, but the TripIt Pro email usually arrived before the airline one did, if that makes a difference to you. 

 

Flight delays and cancellations happen far more often than any of us would like. But with immediate notification of any problems, at least you can be one of the first in line to make alternative arrangements.

Connection Summary

Because I don’t live in a city with a major hub airport, a large number of my flights involve connections through cities like Atlanta. When I land, I want to know information such as the time of my next flight, the gate at which I will be landing, and the gate out of which my next flight will leave. Of course virtually every airline has its own app or website that you can manually access to load all of this information, but sometimes those apps are slow to use. TripIt Pro sends you an email immediately upon landing on your first flight with all of the information that you need to make your connection, including gate information and whether the next flight is on time.

 

I found it very convenient to have this connection information pushed directly to me so that I didn’t’t have to do any extra work to find the key information that I needed.

Seat Tracker

I’ve been lucky enough for the past few months to get a good seat at the time that I booked my flight. If you are not as lucky, TripIt Pro includes a Seat Tracker service. Tell the service what kind of seat you are looking for (exit row, aisle, window, specific cabin, front of the plane, etc.) and TripIt Pro will notify you when that seat becomes available. You’ll have to contact your airline to make the change, but at least you will know when it is the right time to do so.

Etc.

TripIt Pro offers other features that didn’t appeal to me, but maybe they would appeal to you. A Point Tracker service lets you track your travel points in one spot. (I find it more useful to just manage this through each specific airline, hotel, train, etc. service.) A flight refund service alerts you if a cheaper flight becomes available and you are ever eligible for a refund. (Does this ever really happen for anyone?) A sharing feature let’s you share travel information with others. (Even with the free TripIt service, I just use the TripIt website “print” my travel itinerary to a PDF file and then I share that PDF file with others, without using the Pro sharing features.) And there are some discounts for other travel services if you use TripIt Pro.

Conclusion

It is nice that TripIt Pro offers additional features, but I think for most people the question is whether it is worth $50 a year to you to get immediate notification of delays or cancellation in your travel plans. If you travel often, and mentally divide up that $50 price among each of your different flights, then I suspect many frequent fliers would consider this a bargain. Even just one cancellation can cause a lot of distress for you, and with an immediate alert at least you can start working on a solution to the problem ASAP. The other TripIt Pro features are not in themselves worth $50 to me, but they are nice bonuses that increase the overall value.

Everyone who travels should check out the free TripIt app. If you are a frequent traveler, I encourage you to consider adding the TripIt Pro service.

Click here to get TripIt (free) – iOS
Click here to get Tripit (free) – Android

Do you have a favorite travel app? Tell us about it in the comments about it in the comments below!

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