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The Internet of Things Could Empower People with Disabilities

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Ubiquitous sensors are one of the driving ideas behind the Internet of Things.

The ideas is that we will put on and wear more and more sensors until they become pervasive — enabling everything we interact with on a daily basis to have the potential to offer us greater insight or context for our activities.

It's not hard to see how many of the devices already available are impacting our lives, even in small ways. There are thermostats that can learn from our habits and even be controlled remotely through our phones, window shutters that adjust automatically, depending on how much sunlight is coming through and objects fitted with RFID devices, which let us know when they pass through checkpoints.

All of these devices make life a little easier. But one segment of the population could potentially benefit even more than the rest from IoT technologies: People with disabilities — not just at home, but at the office and everywhere in-between.

Lindsey Pollak: Understanding Those So-Called Entitled Millennials

Connecting with Bill Sobel

Millennials been called a lot of things, including confident, connected and open to change. They're an important voting block in the US, but aren't very impressed by government solutions to problems. They like workplace flexibility, but crave in-person collaboration.

So how do you know what members of the Millennial Generation or Generation Y or whatever you want to call people who people who were born from the early 1980s to the early 2000s really want? You might want to ask Lindsey Pollak, a New York City-based nationally recognized expert on millennial workplace issues.

LeadSift Promises Smarter Ad Targeting through Twitter

Twitter has yet to reach its full potential when it comes to ad targeting. The social networking site has long been playing catchup to Facebook, which launched its email-based targeting service in 2012. Twitter didn’t announce its “tailored audiences” service until this past January.

With Facebook, advertisers can also target people by the “interests” the site asks new users to fill in when creating an account. Twitter’s answer to this was to let advertisers push their marketing messages to users based on who the user follows.

For example, if a user follows several football players, coaches and commentators, they may receive a targeted ad from a company selling sports drinks. More recently, Twitter announced the ability for advertisers to target consumers based on keywords found within a user’s tweets.

Week in Review: Customer Experience is Everyone's Job + Social Business Myths

Not My Job
Customer experience transcends work silos.

Tell Us a Story
Brands pursuing customer engagement are turning to multimedia digital storytelling.

Land of Social Business Make Believe
Some social enterprise deployment issues are based on myths, fairytales and falsehoods.

Build the Future of Work
Networks provide companies increased resiliency, efficiency and innovation.

Microsoft Moves Into the Home
Microsoft named 10 start-ups to its home automation accelerator program.

Weed Out Bad Processes
IT professionals must act as gardeners to allow businesses to flourish.

3 Innovative Vendors in Knowledge & Collaboration 2014 (New)
This report highlights three innovative vendors of note in 2014.
Download the Report

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The iPhone 6: Is it Size That Matters Most?

For those who can’t wait to see what the iPhone 6 that will (supposedly) be unveiled on Sept. 9 looks like, we’ve got photos. Ok, not really, but Hollywood gossip site TMZ says it does. It apparently got them from a friend of an ex-employee of the Foxconn factory in China where many models of iPhones are made.

Now before you click over to that well respected source of tech news, chill. You can’t really tell how big the phone is, what kind of glass it uses, and, strangely, its body looks like the iPod 5.

Re.code, whom we consider to be more credible source for news like this, suggests that there may be two iPhones, one that is 4.7 inches and another that is 5.5 inches. Both of which are expected to run speedy new A8 processors.

We’ve also heard another rumor that at least one of the phones (if there are actually two) could be called the iPhone Air instead of the iPhone 6.

Friday Fun Day: Insider's Guide to Facebook Image Sizes

2014-15-August-Oven-Roast.jpgFacebook may generate a lot of hate. But it generates even more interest — especially from marketers who struggle daily to keep up with its ever changing guidelines on how and what to do everything from encourage page "likes" to keep customers engaged.

So it was with great interest that I stumbled upon a blog by Emily Goodrich. She's a technical writer at Heyo, a Blacksburg, Va.-based startup that wants to help small-business owners gain followers on sites like Facebook and Twitter and convert those followers into email captures and sales. 

Goodrich shared a marketing essential: a Facebook image size cheatsheet.

So You Think You Know WordPress

2014-15-August-My-Name-Is.jpgYou’re ready to develop your website. You're looking for a web CMS that’s secure, cost-effective, easy to maintain and customizable for your business. You wouldn’t consider WordPress, right?

This stigma has plagued WordPress, especially when compared to other available tools like Joomla and Drupal.

Fast, Flexible, Innovative: Why Networks Thrive

Social Business, 2014-15-August-Networks.jpgVienna, September 1901. A man you’ve probably never heard of, Ludwig von Bertalanffy, was born. A man whose theories are helping to shape the future of how you do work. Ludwig von Bertalanffy, let’s just call him LvB, is the forefather of evolutionary systems thinking — something you’d usually find described in dry university textbooks — but he has had a radical effect on how we depict and predict interactions in systems in biology, physics, anthropology and social sciences.

Why does this man born more than a hundred years ago make a difference to you now, sitting in your cubicle or reading on your tablet? Because LvB originated general systems theory that demonstrates why thinking holistically is critical to surviving and thriving and why reductionist perspectives lead to extinction.

Get Executive Buy-In for Digital Asset Management

2014-15-August-Picture-Taking.jpgWe live in an image rich world. We take thousands of pictures on our personal devices with ease. And brands are committed to visual storytelling now more than ever.

Like many organizations, you may find yourself at a crossroads between how you’ve managed digital content up until now and how you plan to address future digital asset management (DAM) needs.

Google Kicks the Productivity Stool From Under Microsoft

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It’s been an interesting couple of weeks in the document management space, made all the more interesting by the ongoing competition between Microsoft and Google around their productivity suites.

We also saw recently that most enterprises are still struggling with document management while both Metalogix and Accellion have released new products to help overcome this.

News Bites: Blasting Off, Driving Out, Targeting, Reading

The latest in targeting, web design and marketing from the Big Apple, the Codfish State, across the pond and Mater Urbium.

Microsoft Extends a Hand to 10 Emerging IoT Firms

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Microsoft has just announced the 10 start-ups it has selected for its home automation accelerator program. Before you yawn, consider this: home automation technologies are providing one of the cornerstones of the emerging Internet of Things (IoT).

These companies have been developing IoT technologies that specifically target the home, with the emphasis on products that are user-friendly and affordable.

EMC Syncplicity Cuts Prices and Raises Storage Caps

EMC Syncplicity wants to own the Enterprise Sync and Share market and they don’t want price or storage limits to be barriers to adoption.

“This is a mass market with hundreds of millions of users to whom our service is applicable” said Jeetu Patel, the company’s general manager.

And since both Forrester and Gartner rate Syncplicity as a best-in-class offering, the company doesn’t want other factors to keep companies from embracing all that it has to offer.

“Our singular goal is active user engagement and we don’t want storage limits to get in the way of that,” said Patel.

Google Classroom Fishes For Microsoft Users In Schools

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Cheeky Google is stomping all over what has until recently been an exclusive Microsoft stomping ground. Well, nearly exclusive. Google has just announced the release of Google Classroom for anyone that is currently using Google Apps for Education.

Classroom is a collaboration tool that enables students keep track of what assignments are due, enable teachers to track what is happening in the physical classroom and provide direct, real-time feedback to students on their progress.

IT Should be Gardeners, Not Gatekeepers

Information Management, 2014-14-August-Deluge.jpgIt’s a deluge, you’ve been told. It’s a flood of biblical proportions. Data on your customers is more abundant than ever and the internet of things is only going to make it sky rocket. From terabytes to petabytes in 60 seconds!

You’ve probably also read that big data analytics tools and next generation customer information management systems mean that you, the competent but non-expert marketing analyst, can analyze these gigantic and mind-bogglingly complex datasets at the drop of a hat.

But then you look around your own company and see that customer data isn't standardized and has legacy issues, the analytics tools your company employs are beyond your comprehension and your IT department is cautious about allowing you to purchase tools for your own department.

It’s a common set of frustrations and it means that business users in departments like marketing, sales and operations have begun to take things into their own hands and are independently downloading user-friendly, efficient tools that get the job done.

Sprinklr Increases Social Media Reach with TBG Buy

Social media management firm Sprinklr announced today that it has bought TBG Digital, a company that considers itself a pioneer of corporate advertising on Facebook and Twitter. The move is designed to amplify Sprinklr’s reach across social media and will add an estimated 100 new employees to its 400-person global roster, according to a written release published by Sprinklr.  

Let DAM Do the Dirty Work

DAM, 2014-14-August-Washing.jpgCreating unique digital experiences aren't easy. If we look at how organizations address the challenges of content creation and management, it quickly becomes clear that we're struggling to match our content production capabilities with the speed of the market. If an organization is slow to collaborate, unable to share digital assets, or labors to fully utilize its content technology and tools to be productive, it will be slow to deliver digital experiences at the right time, place and channel. Here are three quick tips to improve collaboration and reenergize creative and marketing.

Don't Close Your Brick-and-Mortar Stores Yet

Thumbnail image for 2014-14-august-cracking-nuts.jpgCracking the e-commerce nut isn't as easy as people who actually crack nuts for a living clearly understand.

In fact, two new studies demonstrate that brands and marketers still face significant obstacles to adoption, especially on mobile. But the biggest challenge may be behavioral. As we recently explained, more than 90 percent of retail sales still occur in physical stores.

Why are so many consumers reluctant to buy online, despite the rapid growth of e-commerce? Ripen eCommerce, a Princeton, N.J.-based agency providing marketing, creative, development and technology services to e-commerce clients, thinks understanding consumers' path to purchase is the first step online retailers should take to capture a greater portion of the $3.2 trillion US retail industry.

How SMBs Can Tap Into Big Data

2014-14-August-Big-Top.jpgBig Data isn’t as big as Big Data Hype. Yes, big data is doing some pretty cool stuff out there. But things are getting frothy. Can big data cure cancer? Will big data destroy privacy? Big data will yield millions in revenues! It is easy to feel like you have to jump onto big data now or you’re likely to get left behind.

Here’s the rub: big data won’t do any of these things. Highly skilled clinicians and biochemists will cure cancer. Bad privacy policies and poor data security will destroy your privacy. And skilled business people will find ways to capture millions in revenues. Yes, big data will help. But the machines can’t do it alone.

Make Your Global Email Marketing Hit the Target [Infographic]

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Are some common mistakes turning your global email marketing into a world-class mess?

A recent survey by a Waltham, Mass.-based Lionbridge Technologies of more than 570 people from 25 countries found many global email marketing efforts are falling flat. The reason: companies aren’t tailoring their messages for the unique global audiences they are trying to attract, don’t use a mobile-friendly format and are clinging to antiquated tracking methods.

Some may even be running afoul of local opt-in or privacy laws.