All posts on October, 2015


Tech Buzz

App for Rating People Draws Withering Scorn

Canadian businesswoman Julia Cordray’s plan to launch Peeple, a Yelp-like app that would let people post reviews about other people, has drawn fierce criticism in the tech press and the blogosphere, including a petition against the app’s launch and a Twitter campaign to boycott it. “It’s a legal and ethical minefield,” said Alan Pelz-Sharpe, a research director at 451 Research.

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Customer Service

Leveraging Moments of Truth

eGain is touting a report from Forrester Consulting and my friend Ian Jacobs purporting to show that omnichannel customer service is stagnant or worse when it comes to delivering service that customers need and want. Ian does good work and I am in agreement with him on this, but I have trouble with some conclusions, specifically the implication that the problem can be solved with more software.

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Internet of Things

Philips Smart Hub Embraces Siri, HomeKit

Philips on Monday unveiled Hue Bridge 2.0., which integrates the company’s smart home products and iOS’s HomeKit, giving users the ability to dictate to smart things from a Siri-enabled smartphone. Replacing its round predecessor, the square Hue Bridge 2.0 is compatible with Philips’ legacy smart lights and controls. The hub will support new smart products from Philips for the foreseeable future.

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Cybersecurity

DDoS Attacks Create Smokescreens for Larceny

DDoS attacks have evolved from protest tool to criminal weapon. More than one in three DDoS attacks are used to plant malware or a virus on company systems, and 40 percent of them result in data theft, according to NeuStar’s semiannual DDoS attack and protection report. “Until two years ago, DDoS attacks were really seen as just a disruption and annoyance tool,” said NeuStar’s Joe Loveless.

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Tech Law

EU Data Transfer Ruling Leaves Tech Companies in Quandary

Europe’s highest court has ruled that a 15-year-old agreement regulating electronic data transfers with the U.S. was invalid, potentially striking a blow to thousands of U.S. technology companies that rely on a uniform legal standard do business overseas. The European Court of Justice ruled that the U.S. Safe Harbor agreement was inadequate to protect the privacy rights of ordinary citizens.

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Customer Experience

Stop Competing on Price, Start Competing on Customer Experience

Target may be implementing price matching, but there are other ways to compete. Customer experience is the new battleground in retail sales, and winning this battle requires winning over customers with truly personalized service. Despite all the advancements in technology, personalized customer service and efforts to build customer loyalty have all but disappeared.

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Reviews

Slackel Linux: Not Your Father’s Slackware

Slackel is a Linux distro a step away from the mainstream Debian-based Linux OS line. It is based on Slackware and Salix. Users already familiar with that lineage are more inclined to like Slackel. Slackel offers a few advantages not usually found with the Slackware Linux lineup. The main difference is that its repository includes the current version of Slackware and the latest version of KDE.

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Photography

Adobe Lays Out a Feast at Its MAX Picnic

Adobe raised the curtain on two mobile apps and a basket of product upgrades at its MAX conference in Los Angeles. Both new apps — Photoshop Fix and Capture CC — are free, but they initially will be available only to users of Apple’s mobile devices. Photoshop Fix includes some commonly used Photoshop features — exposure, contrast and saturation control, as well as object and blemish removal.

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Government

Federal Cybersecurity Performance Gets Mixed Reviews

The spectacular database breach that affected nearly 21 million people highlighted the continuing vulnerability of U.S. government information technology systems, despite the expenditure of billions each year on cybersecurity. The breach resulted in the departure of the head of the agency and triggered widespread questioning about the adequacy of federal IT security by members of Congress.

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Internet

Facebook, Eutelsat to Use Satellites to Spread Net Across Sub-Saharan Africa

Facebook and Eutelsat have entered a partnership to leverage satellite technology to provide Internet access to remote parts of sub-Saharan Africa.
The initiative, which includes a multiyear agreement with Spacecom, will utilize the entire broadband payload on the future AMOS-6 satellite as the backbone of a dedicated system that will include satellite capacity, gateways and terminals.

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