WIT: Robotics Barbie joins the corporate call for diversity

Robotics Barbie is also part of a Mattel Inc. initiative to promote new jobs for girls, in line with a public pledge the company made earlier this year.

 

By Jeff Green of Bloomberg

Robotics Barbie is a lab-coat-and-glasses-wearing robotics engineer, a far cry from the 1992 “math class is tough” version. Appropriately, she’s also part of a Mattel Inc. initiative to promote new jobs for girls, in line with a public pledge the company made earlier this year.

In February, Mattel senior vice-president Lisa McKnight joined 40 executives onstage at the Makers women’s diversity conference to make a range of commitments towards improving women’s professional lives.

McKnight promised 10 such dolls this year; advertising group UM said it would double the number of women of colour at every level of its organization; LinkedIn said it will add job coaching for returning moms.

These kinds of pledges have in recent years become a kind of progressive calling card for companies looking to keep and attract young talent. There’s a promise for every interest group, with a wide range of commitment and accountability.

Some 300 CEOs have signed on to the CEO Action coalition, which seeks to share successful diversity initiatives. Many members of that group are also part of Paradigm for Parity and Parity.org, which have similar missions to increase all forms of workplace diversity.

The Thirty Percent Coalition, 3% Movement, and 2020 Women on Boards ask signees for a commitment to specific levels of female representation. Others focus singly on LGBT rights, or ethnicity, veterans or the disabled or in a specific field such as the Tech Inclusion Pledge.

“There are strong social norms right now around committing to these kinds of goals,” said Dolly Chugh, an associate professor of management and organization at the NYU Stern School of Business.

She has studied how public pressure changes diversity behaviour. “If you’re among the minority of CEOs who isn’t signing the pledge or promise, you’re violating a norm and norm violations make people very uncomfortable.”

By most measures, two decades of increased efforts to improve diversity have slowed or stalled. Parity for women in boardrooms is still at least three decades away. Women and people of colour are dramatically underrepresented in top management. At the CEO level, white men still occupy 95% of the seats.

In some specific areas, though, public commitments have prompted change. Formed in 2011, the 3% Movement was named after the ratio of women creative directors in the advertising world to men (they now make up 29%).

The more the merrier, says Shannon Schuyler, who heads corporate responsibility at PwC. The professional services company started CEO Action for Diversity & Inclusion a year ago. Almost 90% of the organizations either have or are planning to add unconscious bias training. “This is about the CEO saying that they will put themselves out there, to really be able to make the change happen,” Schuyler said.

Robotics Engineer Barbie, which comes with a humanoid robot and laptop, will partner with the Tynker game platform and Black Girls CODE to encourage girls to embrace computer science, according to Mattel. The company says it has introduced 17 dolls focused on careers and female role models, more than the 10 promised.

Among the other companies on the Makers stage with specific goals was Adobe Systems Inc., which promises gender pay parity at all locations by the end of this year, and is at least 80% there already, said Donna Morris, executive vice-president of the customer and employee experience at the maker of Photoshop.

AT&T Inc. and L’Oreal SA promised to improve their representation of women in advertisements, as measured by progress on the scorecard generated by #SeeHer, an organization that has its own pledge to improve the portrayal of women by 20%, as measured by viewers, by 2020.

“People really, really, really value keeping a promise,” said Ayelet Gneezy, an associate professor at the Rady School of Management at the University of California, San Diego, who has studied how people react to promises honoured and broken.

“It’s really about the value of trustworthiness and reliability,” Gneezy said. “So there’s also a risk to not keeping the promise. I don’t really care what they tried to do, I care what they did.”

How do you feel about the new line of STEM Barbie dolls? Sound off in the comments below!

How to: find a lost iPhone even when it’s set to vibrate/silent

 

By Michael Potuck of 9to5 Mac

It can be a frustrating experience to try and find a lost or misplaced iPhone, particularly when it’s set to vibrate/silent. Follow along for two easy ways to locate your iPhone.

Apple offers a couple of handy ways to find your misplaced iPhone (and other
Apple devices) even when it’s set to vibrate/silent. Whether you’ve never used these features before or it’s just been a little while, let’s dive in!
One last thing to keep in mind, your lost iPhone will need to be powered on for the best chance of success, although there may be some hope if not.

Option 1
Find My iPhone is a super handy app that will make your iPhone ring even when it’s set to vibrate/ring. Keep in mind you’ll need to have the feature turned on in settings under iCloud → Find My iPhone. If you happen to be reading this before you’ve lost or misplaced your device it’s also helpful to turn on Send Last Location which automatically uploads this data to Apple just before your battery is about to die.
1 Open Find My iPhone, or download it from the App Store here
2 Tap on the device you’ve lost from the list shown
3 Tap Play Sound

Option 2
If you have an Apple Watch, there is a slick iPhone ping feature built right in. You also don’t need Find My iPhone to be turned on in iCloud settings for this to work.
1 Swipe up from the bottom of your Apple Watch to open Control Center
2 Tap on the ping iPhone icon as seen below

If your lost iPhone or other device has a dead battery, make sure to try and use the Find My iPhone app to at least see its last location. Sometimes that may be enough to jog your memory or put you on the path to finding it.

Do you have any clever ways to track down your missing phone? Tell us about it in the comments below!

How To: Switch Bluetooth Devices in the iOS 11 Control Center

 

By Chris Hauk of Mactrast.com

If you’re like me, you have multiple bluetooth devices paired to your iPhone and iPad. (I have multiple Apple TVs, my AirPods, and various speakers paired to my iPhone.) iOS 11 Control Center makes it easy to switch to active Bluetooth devices, with just a swipe and a few taps of your finger.

How To Switch Bluetooth Devices in the iOS 11 Control Center

1.) Open Control Center. You can do this on the iPhone X by swiping down from the top right of your device’s screen. For every other iPhone, you swipe up from the bottom of the screen.

2.) You’ll see the music player widget in the top-right portion of the Control Center. Look in the upper-right hand portion of the music player widget, and you’ll see an icon that looks like two curved lines. Tap those lines. (iPhone owners with a 3D Touch-capable device can force-touch the music player to pop out the Music Center to the screen. You can then tap the icon in the upper-right hand corner that looks like a triangle with three circle at the top of it.)

3.) You’ll now see the device options. All of the available connected devices that are in range are listed here. You’ll see a checkmark next to the device that is being used for audio.

4.) Tap the name of the device you would like to use for audio. Your sound should immediately transfer to that device.
For more tips and tricks on how to make better use of your Mac, iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Apple Watch, or Apple TV, be sure to visit the “How To” section of our website.

 

What Control Center short cuts do you use the most? Tell us about it in the comments below!

How to Connect wireless headphones to any TV

Ladies,

Living in the digital age means are gadgets are smarter than we are, including our TV sets. I remember when there was only one TV in the house and it had only 3 channels. Today, it seems, you need to have an engineering degree (or a child) in order to tune into your favorite show every week. And, the way we view our shows has changed drastically too. Our shows are “on demand” and rarely watched with the entire family gathered around the set at prime time. No, these days most of us catch up on our shows when it’s most convenient but, that doesn’t always coincide with the rest of your households schedules. Luckily, our smart TVs, gaming consoles, and TV gadgets have the ability to connect a variety of headphones so you can watch your shows without disturbing the rest of the house.

by Taylor Martin of CNET

Use one of these methods to connect headphones to your TV and enjoy listening at full volume without disturbing others.

So you want to watch television at night without disturbing others trying to sleep. Or maybe you prefer to block out the noise of your surroundings — like that annoying dog next door who won’t stop barking — while catching up on The Flash.
Connecting wireless headphones to your television doesn’t have to be difficult, and there are several ways you can pull it off, regardless of what TV you have.

DEDICATED WIRELESS HEADPHONES
If you’re like most people, your TV doesn’t have built-in Bluetooth. But the workaround for connecting wireless headphones is so simple and cheap, it’s not a huge deal anyways.


One the most straightforward ways to use wireless headphones with your TV is to purchase dedicated wireless headphones. These typically come with a base station that plugs into the television via 3.5mm analog jack or optical and work over radio frequency instead of Bluetooth, which comes with one main advantage: range.

Bluetooth headphones are typically limited to 30 feet, give or take. RF headphones often have a far superior range — closer to 300 feet when unobstructed.

There is a catch, however. If you do not have another audio device connected to your television through that jack, such as a sound bar, you’ll have to swap it for the headphones when you want to go wireless.

But if your sound bar is connected through either optical or digital outputs, you can leave the wireless headphones connected without interfering with normal audio playback.

You can find wireless headphones for your television for anywhere from $20 to upwards of $300 and the audio quality will vary substantially.

BLUETOOTH HEADPHONES
A dedicated set of headphones for your TV might have its advantages, but if you already have a nice pair of headphones you’d prefer to use, you might be able to make it work with things you already own or for even less.

If your headphones are Bluetooth, all you really need is a Bluetooth transmitter. Transmitters can be found online or at your local electronics retailers for as little as $15.

Basically, it takes the 3.5mm or RCA output from your television and transmits it as a Bluetooth signal. You will need a power source — usually USB — which you might be able to tap from the USB port on the television or plug into a power strip around your entertainment system. Once you pair the transmitter with your Bluetooth headphones, setup is complete and you can begin watching shows or movies with the audio streaming through your favorite headphones.

Using a Bluetooth transmitter will leave you with the same issue as a pair of dedicated wireless headphones, though. If you’re not using another 3.5mm output device, like a sound bar, you may have to disconnect the Bluetooth transmitter from the 3.5mm or RCA jacks to restore volume to the television’s internal speakers.

MEDIA STREAMERS


Some set-top boxes — such as Roku, Apple TV and Android TV boxes — allow you to connect headphones and listen to your movies and TV shows in private. This is often one of the most hassle-free ways to connect headphones to your television.

ANDROID TV
Support for Bluetooth audio devices on Android TV boxes is hit or miss. Some support Bluetooth, but only for use with a keyboard and mouse. Others, do support Bluetooth headphones, and you pair them just as you would with any other Android device. Put the headphones into pairing mode, go to Settings > Bluetooth and select the headphones when they appear.


The Nvidia Shield Controller also has a headphone jack built-in, so you can use wired headphones with the controller if you don’t have Bluetooth headphones on hand.

APPLE TV
Apple TV will allow you to connect Bluetooth headphones. Just put the headphones into pairing mode and go to Settings > Remotes and Devices > Bluetooth. Wait for the headphones to appear and select them to pair and connect.

 

AMAZON FIRE TV
You can pair Bluetooth headphones with the Amazon Fire TV and Fire TV Stick. Just put your Bluetooth headphones in pairing mode and on the Fire TV or Fire TV Stick, go to Settings > Controllers and Bluetooth Devices > Other Bluetooth Devices. Once your headphones appear under Discovered Devices, select them to complete pairing.

 

ROKU
Depending on which model Roku and Roku remote you have, you can either use private listening through the Roku app or plug wired headphones into the jack on the remote.

To use private listening with the Roku app, download the Roku app to your Android or iOS device and make sure your phone is connected to the same wireless network as your Roku. Open the app and connect either wired or Bluetooth headphones to your phone and private listening will be enabled. Disconnect the headphones to disable private listening.

The Roku 3, Roku Premiere+, Roku 4 and Roku Ultra all come with remotes that feature headphones jacks.

GAMING CONSOLES

If you have a gaming console plugged into your television, you can use it for wireless audio. But there’s a catch. Bluetooth support is spotty and you’ll need wired headphones.

PLAYSTATION 4
The PlayStation 4 will only supports specific Bluetooth headsets. There is also a workaround which requires a USB Bluetooth adapter that circumvents the restriction, but it still doesn’t work with all Bluetooth headsets and headphones.
Your best bet is using wired headphones and plugging them into the 3.5mm headphone jack on the controller. Just make sure to select the proper audio device in settings, under Settings > Devices > Audio Devices > Output to headphones.


XBOX ONE
The Xbox One does not support Bluetooth, so your hopes of a truly wireless experience are dead. But, like with the PlayStation 4, you can plug your headphones into the 3.5mm jack on the controller.
Unfortunately, not all Xbox One controllers are created equal. Newer models have the 3.5mm jack built-in. With an older wireless controller, you will need to purchase the Stereo Headset Adapter, which plugs into the bottom of the controller and gives it a 3.5mm jack and volume and microphone controls.

 

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