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Disrupting the Disruptors

Disrupting the Disruptors

In the 90’s we talked about paradigm shifts – those changes big enough to move the pieces along the board a few more squares.  Today the big word in tech is ‘Disruption’ – turn an industry on its head using innovative tech, deliver great solutions and make unimaginable profits with the IPO.

The problem comes when the companies are too successful. Take UBER, YouTube and Airbnb, all without a doubt disruptors and all coming under the eye of local and federal regulators around the world.

Recently YouTube has come under fire (rightly so) for running its client’s ads alongside unsuitable video material. YouTube’s claim that they are just a ‘tech company providing a platform’ doesn’t wash with most major advertisers who are calling for YouTube to ‘take responsibility for its content.’

We’ve also seen it with UBER who have run issues with local municipalities and labor disputes in their efforts to provide the ground-breaking ride-share service.

The latest company to come under fire is Airbnb who, in South Florida, is facing many interesting issues: http://www.bizjournals.com/southflorida/news/2017/03/22/fight-between-local-officials-and-airbnb-heats-up.html?mc_cid=085f23dc2d&mc_eid=4d66c30d68

One example that’s been with us for a while is PayPal. In the beginning, they we all about the tech and creating a new way of paying for goods and services on line. But the regulators soon realized that PayPal is in a sense a banking organization and tried to regulate them in the same way as other banks. PayPal eventually won a decision that they are not a bank and therefore should not be regulated like one.

 

Silicon Valley is “Stepping Up”

Silicon Valley is “Stepping Up”

Big Tech has dipped its toe in the political arena here and there, sometimes it’s been personal, sometimes it’s been business. Now it seems Big Tech is being pushed on many fronts – by their employees, by their customers and sometimes by their ideals.

Nearly a hundred companies, most of them in the technology field, filed an amicus brief late Sunday in the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, which declined to reinstate the travel ban after a lower court blocked it. The brief, which was signed by an unusually broad coalition of large and small tech companies that included Apple, Facebook, Microsoft, Google, Uber and Intel, said Mr. Trump’s order “violates the immigration laws and the Constitution.”

“Silicon Valley is stepping up,” said Sam Altman, who runs the valley’s most prominent start-up incubator, Y Combinator. “The companies are working on three fronts: They are vociferously objecting to the Trump policies they think are bad, they are trying to engage with him to influence his behavior, and they are developing new technology to work against policies and political discourse they don’t support.”

Read the full story in the New York Times.

Meditation coach helps executives bust stress

Meditation coach helps executives bust stress

Twenty-five years ago, you just didn’t let people know you were into meditation.

“They would have thought you were a hippie or a weirdo, and that wouldn’t be a great way to get employed,” said Michelle Goebel, an aspiring professional at the time.

So Goebel kept it to herself. Until she used it to start a business.

Today, the Boca Raton woman works as a meditation coach for many South Florida executives who want to relieve stress and bring more clarity and creativity to their work. Goebel, 52, learned the practice after a serious car accident in 1991.

Read the complete article here

By: Marcia Heroux Pounds Contact Reporter, Sun Sentinel

What can we learn for CES

What can we learn for CES

CES just keeps getting bigger. This year, the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas was the biggest to date – about 2,600,000 net square feet!

And it’s not just TVs that are getting bigger and thinner, it’s that CES has become the premier automotive show next to the Detroit Auto Show.

Until recently, automotive shows were about performance and specifications, this year at CES automotive moves into the life-style category, encompassing the whole experience of personal transportation and the Iot.

As emerging technologies such as virtual reality and augmented reality are expected to have big years in 2017, it will be interesting to see how much bigger CES can get.

For loads of CES product reviews here.

Embrace Enterprise Collaboration (before it’s too late)

Embrace Enterprise Collaboration (before it’s too late)

Email is no longer the default communication tool of choice. For employees and teams who need to collaborate (that’s just about everyone), they are leveraging channels like unified communications, public instant messaging, and external social media applications.

As a member of the ITPalooza’16 organizing team, I’m happy to report the we are collaborating using the unified communications platform ‘Slack‘. Slack offers, text style chat, file sharing, and channel management as well as easy switching between Slack accounts.

Rather than avoiding enterprise collaboration tools altogether, businesses should embrace and leverage them as opportunities to create a more collaborative environment with employees, business partners, and customers. As a result, businesses will be able to foster a highly-efficient environment that strengthens relationships and increases revenues.

Read the full article and related articles here.

Abundance of tech jobs and a shortage of skilled workers

Abundance of tech jobs and a shortage of skilled workers

South Florida, like many other regions, is experiencing a tech boom that has created a job rich environment.

It is against this backgroung that Miami Dade College has been awarded a $3.5 million grant to provide technology-based training to high school graduates.

The funds were awarded alongside federal dollars doled out to other programs under the TechHire national initiative launched by President Barack Obama in 2015.

The initiative aims to close “the digital divide” created by an abundance of tech jobs and a shortage of skilled workers to fill them.

If you’re looking to hire or be hired, contact Alex today. [email protected]