The Comunicano Communique for Friday December 25th 2015

 
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Merry Christmas....While today is a holiday, the start of a three day weekend or the start of a ten day break for many, I'm still reading and curating news articles.  Today's Comunicano Communique features of course a story on Google's Santa Tracker, as well as a few hard news items about Kickstarter, IBM's Watson and Amazon, plus a bunch of lists to keep you well informed over the coming days of some of the best ofs...so have a happy, safe, sane and sincere holiday, wherever you may be.

Have a view on the news today? Please let me know what you think....Andy Abramson

 
 
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The engineering elves building Google's Santa Tracker 

SAN FRANCISCO---Google launched the start of its annual summertime I/O developer summit by championing Android's active user base of one billion and counting. It appears Santa Claus might be one of them. One of the internet giant's more charming projects, the Santa Tracker has become somewhat of a digital yuletide tradition over the last decade.

 
 

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Kickstarter hires journalist to investigate campaign that failed to deliver to backers

Failure is a part of crowdfunding. And Kickstarter is making a push to be more transparent about what that failure looks like and why it happens. Science and technology journalist Mark Harris announced this week that he has been hired by the Brooklyn-based crowdfunding platform Kickstarter to investigate and write an expose about why a crowdfunding campaign on its platform failed.
 
 

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IBM Watson: AI For The Real World

IBM Watson, the company's AI cognitive computing platform, has attracted an ecosystem of developers and users who are layering the technology on top of their own to make it even smarter. Here's an update on Watson's evolution and why IBM can confidently assure us it won't ever become HAL.

 
 

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Amazon Seeks to Ease Ties With UPS

As the clock counts down to Christmas, workers at United Parcel Service Inc. are busy hustling packages along loading docks and conveyor belts at its Louisville, Ky., hub-part of a costly, intricate system built in part to cater to Amazon.com Inc., its biggest customer.
 
 

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35 Cool Social Media Facts

Social media seems to have been with us forever. In fact Facebook has turned ten!...that is an eternity in tech. Social media is so old that the fun police have turned up and are threatening to ruin the party. The no rules and the dope smoking, beer swilling social media parties have started moving into the board room.
 
 

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13 Asian Startups To Watch In 2016

2015 was an eventful year for the tech industry in Asia. Funding started to flow in India, which is expected to become the world's second-largest Internet market soon, while many tech companies in China, South Korea, and Southeast Asia also hit key milestones.
 
 

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The European Startup Revolution has arrived

The following is my (slightly edited version) foreword of a new book that is being released today. Written by one of our co-founders, Croatian entrepreneur / writer Ivo Špigel, and co-published by Tech.eu, we're extremely proud to present you with 'The European Startup Revolution'.
 
 

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The 50 Best Podcast Episodes of 2015

A year's worth of highlights from an increasingly vibrant genre Please consider disabling it for our site, or supporting our work in one of these ways Subscribe Now > More than 300,000 podcasts exist in the world as of the close of 2015.
 
 

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12 Travel Apps Worth Keeping in 2016

Recently I deleted dozens of travel apps from my iPhone. Many are great. They allowed me to research unfamiliar places, listen to audio tours and turn my photos into postcards. But travel is about tapping the world, not a screen, so I'm ending the year with an app purge.
 
 

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The Comunicano Comnunique for Tuesday December 22nd 2015

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It's Tuesday and the news is S L O W !!!! But yesterday Skype Microsoft made an acquisition of sorts, snapping up Talko. I played around with the HyperVoice based Talko when it first was released and understand the premise. For Skype think of this as an acquihire that includes some forward looking technology that they need to keep up with Cisco.

Have a view on the news today? Please let me know what you think....Andy Abramson

 
 
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Talko comes to Skype

I am pleased to announce today that Microsoft has acquired technology from Talko, maker of an innovative mobile app for on-the-go business communications. As part of the agreement, Talko employees will join the Skype team. Together, the new technology and talent will help us deliver great new features and capabilities in both Skype and Skype for Business.

 
 

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If you like Stephen Colbert's sense of humor or are a StarWars fan you have to watch his "Plot Summary" riff. It's too funny to miss.

 
 
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Stephen Explains "Star Wars" To China

When the first "Star Wars" came out in 1977, western media was suppressed in China. So to get his Chinese viewers excited about the new film, Stephen sums up what they missed.
 
 

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How APIs are Disrupting Business

Changing the world, one API Enterprise at a time. In today's installment of #BigIdeas2016, I'd like to take a quick minute to talk about how APIs are disrupting not just the tech industry, but all of business. Application programming interfaces or APIs, are one of the driving forces behind a lot of digital disruption out there.
 
 

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Zapier soothes BYOA woes, connecting APIs from enterprise apps

The story of how Zapier got its start is not dissimilar to that of many other startups. The company, which offers app integration and automation services, began when its founders started noticing a distinct trend in their previous work.

 
 

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The 10 Biggest Tech Trends for 2016

If you already feel like you are living in a sci-fi futuristic fantasy, just wait. Technology is getting exponentially faster, more immersive and intuitive. And as technology changes, so does the way we live.
 
 

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Hospitality Net - Are Virtual Reality Concierges Coming?

In the next several years, virtual reality is expected to see massive adoption. According to Digi-Capital, VR is predicted to grow into a $30 billion industry by 2020. Already, a number of large and small hospitality brands are utilizing this new technology to reach and engage guests. But what does this look like?

 
 

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Fact-Checking the Debate on Encryption

As politicians and counter-terrorism officials search for lessons from the recent attacks in Paris and San Bernardino, California, senior officials have called for limits on technology that sends encrypted messages. It's a debate that has repeatedly recurred for more than a decade.In the 1990s, the Clinton Administration directed technology companies to store copies of their encryption keys with the government.
 
 

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CES 2016: What Not to Miss for Marketing and Media Professionals

An informed look into the must-see brands, startups and events from PSFK's conference guide Virtual media environments, connected home ecosystems and emotion-controlled entertainment have shaped the media and marketing landscapes of today. The integration of such future-focused technologies into brand experience has presented ever more opportunities to reach an audience, allowing brands to design for more immersive and hyper-targeted conversations.
 
 

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The Comunicano Communique for Wednesday December 16th 2015

 
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Google and Slack both took advantage of the news slowdown to make noise today. Yesterday Slack announced their $80 million dollar developer fund to generate more integrations with what is rapidly becoming the Enterprise and Small Business home screen for team and cross team collaboration. 

Google made ProjectFI very relevant for global data users. Today they announced the addition of tablet deployment. The key. International at flat rate as they are basically jumping on T-Mobile's global roaming partnership platform.
 

Have a view on the news today? Please let me know what you think....Andy Abramson

 
 
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Google brings Project Fi data service to iPads, Nexus and Galaxy tablets | ZDNet

Google's pay-for-what-you-use Project Fi phone service has a new trick and a new SIM card: One for adding data to tablets. New Project Fi SIM cards will soon be available for an initial five tablets although Google says that any slate equipped with a radio compatible with T-Mobile's network may work.
 
 

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The Slack Platform Launch

We live in an exciting time for work. Instead of three or four big vendors providing end-to-end software suites, we have a variety of top notch products at our fingertips ready to make us more powerful and productive in our jobs.
 
 

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Slack Launches $80 Million Fund to Boost Third-Party Development

Workplace collaboration company Slack says it has set up an investment fund intended to make early-stage investments in companies building apps that will enhance its popular application. The $80 million Slack Fund has been established in partnership with venture capital firms Accel, Andreessen Horowitz, Index Ventures, KPCB, Spark Growth and Social Capital.
 
 

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The Ignored Generation: 25 Stats Brands Should Know About Marketing to Baby Boomers

The marketing industry is obsessed with millennials: what they want, how they think, how they buy, and ultimately, how to "engage" with them. Yet, while an important and influential consumer demographic, they have no where near the buying power of their seniors: the baby boomers.
 
 

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IBM Unveils Watson IoT Global HQ | Light Reading

MUNICH -- IBM (NYSE:IBM) today announced the opening of its global headquarters for Watson Internet of Things (IoT), launching a series of new offerings, capabilities and ecosystem partners designed to extend the power of cognitive computing to the billions of connected devices, sensors and systems that comprise the IoT.
 
 

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4 Key Brands Changing the Face of Retail Trends

How national retailers like Starbucks and Target are evolving the shopper experience across channels and platforms Retail innovation is often credited to the little guys-quirky companies and specialized startups that invent technologies to disrupt an industry. However, several larger brands that have adopted a forward-thinking strategy are leveraging new technologies to enhance the shopper experience and establish a new paradigm in customer service.
 
 

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Pinterest To Open Promoted Pins For All US Businesses

The Pinterest waitlist waiting will soon be over. The company said today that starting in January all US advertisers will be able to buy Promoted Pins. The company officially launched Promoted Pins, its first advertising product, last January but limited access to partner advertisers.
 
 

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Thanks To Google, Your Phone Now Doubles As A Lightsaber

Every single time I see something else pushing "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" I roll my eyes. And then I try something else where I think "OK, that was pretty smart." Disney has teamed up with every brand known to man to promote the film, which premiered last night in Los Angeles.
 
 

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The Comunicano Communique for Tuesday December 15th 2015

 
 
 
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It's only mid-December and the news is slowing down.....really slowing down. As the year ends we're seeing more "recaps" and "best of's" earlier and earlier. Given a long Thanksgiving week replete with CyberMonday, the last six weeks of the year are turning into a news graveyard of business deals and politics. And what's worse is the media is letting it happen. Instead of "looking" for stories, the media is basically letting itself be "fed' the news vs. finding the news.

That's why today's "Communique" is mostly tips and insight on topics that may interest you with a few pieces of news scattered through. 


Please let me know what you think....Andy Abramson

 
 
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Is Tech Innovation Transforming the Agency Industry for the Better?

For the past decade, the digital advertising industry has been singularly focused on one thing: building technology to make digital media smarter and more efficient. This activity has been touted as innovation, but what have we actually achieved as an industry? Not much, considering we devote a mere 20% of our time to tasks that improve performance.
 
 

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The Death of Bank Products has been greatly under-exaggerated

Since 2005 I've been predicting the decline of branch banking. For almost 10 years I fought bankers who decried my assessment that branches would cease to be the most important channel in banking, to be replaced by far more efficient mechanisms for revenue generation and relationship.
 
 

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How the Product Hunt community drove 1 million clicks in 10 days for AppAction.io

TL;DR Focus on conversations and you'll reap the rewards of launching on Product Hunt. Launch Day #1 On December 2nd, we launched AppAction.io on Product Hunt. It was a pretty average Wednesday and we were buried in the upcoming section of the site.
 
 

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A Beginner's Guide To Social Media Marketing From The 10,000 Small Businesses Program

In July, I had the privilege of serving as a social media panelist for the New Orleans cohort of Goldman Sachs' 10,000 Small Businesses program. Along with two other online marketing professionals from the area, I was to host an interactive session with the business owners and entrepreneurs about leveraging social media for their businesses.
 
 

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This Brick-and-Mortar Store Wants To Sell You the Internet of Things | CRM Daily

In a store under construction off the University Avenue shopping strip in Palo Alto in Silicon Valley, workmen tinker and tarps cover the walls. The new retail shop is unlike those around it and will offer unique items: It will sell the Internet of Things. To the layman, this may sound like tech garble.
 
 

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Salesforce Has Acquired An AI Startup Called MinHash To Build Out Its Marketing Analytics

Salesforce has made another acquisition to build out its big-data analytics for marketers. TechCrunch has learned and confirmed with Salesforce that it has acquired MinHash, a young startup based in Palo Alto co-founded by two data science engineers formerly with eBay and Avaya.
 
 

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Stephen Wolfram Aims to Democratize His Software

For nearly three decades, Stephen Wolfram has built software technology that has attracted an avid following among mathematicians and scientists. His Mathematica program for symbolic mathematical computation and its programming language, Wolfram Language, are favorites of the intelligentsia of the quant world in universities and corporations.
 
 

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Google updates Trip Bundles for road warriors using Inbox | ZDNet

Google may have given me another reason to use its Inbox app instead of Gmail: The company has improved its Trip Bundles functionality. Trip Bundles for Inbox rolled out in June, but I stuck with my tried and true travel planner: TripIt.
 
 

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The Best Wireless Carriers

After 90 hours of crunching numbers, poring over the fine print buried in plans, and making sense of complex pricing schemes, we found Verizon Wireless is the best wireless carrier for domestic use. It's the fastest, most reliable network in most parts of the United States, and while other networks may offer some compelling deals, Verizon remains the clear leader in most regions.
 
 

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The Comunicano Communique for Friday December 11 2015

 

 
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The Comunicano Daily is no more. We've changed the name to the Communique.

The name has been changed for a few reasons. First, doing this everyday, especially when I've been globally nomadic the past seven months has been challenging. But also I wanted to mix up the content and bring to you more timely and insightful articles vs. only the news of the day. Lastly, the name is more in line with the business we're in. Communication and the delivery of it.

So as with any "experiment" the content mix will always change, but the premise will never as each time the Communique comes out, there's likely something every day you'll want to read. 


Please let me know what you think....Andy Abramson

 
 

More and more I find really well written and articulate content in MEDIUM. It's really a thinking persons' content trove. Today, this 13 minute read on The Mobile Growth Stackreally got me thinking about the changing landscape of communications. 

 
 
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2015: The Mobile Growth Stack Revised

(Disclaimer: I lead a growth team at SoundCloud. The views expressed here do not necessarily represent those of my employer) It's been just over a year since I published my original Mobile Growth Stack post on Medium.
 
 

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When VCs, especially respected ones start to talk about the availability of of capital it is more of a rallying cry to startup more, to invest more and to do more.

 
 
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Capital Is No Longer Scarce

Capital is no longer scarce. This is an assertion I made a while back in my post " Land, Capital, Attention: This Time it Is the Same. " Today I want to elaborate on that a bit. Estimates put global investible capital at north of $100 trillion.
 
 

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FanDuel and DraftKings are in trouble. This in my view is only the tip of the iceberg. What was once really fantasy sports is now fantasy gambling, and sports betting has never been really allowed in the USA on wide scale basis, as it has always been a staple of the underground economy. 

 
 
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Judge orders FanDuel and DraftKings to halt all business in New York

Online fantasy sports betting sites FanDuel and DraftKings will need to temporarily shut down operations in New York, as a judge today granted an injunction against both companies. State Supreme Court Justice Manuel Mendez sided with New York's attorney general, finding that the underlying model that's helped put these businesses atop a multibillion-dollar industry likely amounts to illegal sports wagering and gambling under state law.
 
 

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As a stats junkie from way back I always enjoy a good read on metrics and how they are applied. This article cites some pretty good resources and provides a nice primer to marketers.

 
 
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50+ Statistics Designed to Influence B2B Marketing Budgets in the New Year

It is that time in the year again. As we wind down 2015, marketing budgets and planning for the new year begin to take focus. Hopefully, the performance metrics associated with your organization's marketing programs have yielded success and validation for tactics proposed at the beginning of the year.
 
 

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FaceBook is taking aim at LinkedIn. Make no mistake about it. With Apple also going after the Enterprise, my view is the mobile enterprise will be where the money can be made, so this means have your social selling strategy aligned with your product and marketing efforts from the start with Facebook.

 
 
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Facebook at Work chief shares details on its new social enterprise tools

Facebook plans to release its Facebook at Work social network for business in the 'coming months.' The project's leader spoke with CIO.com about the motivation behind Facebook at Work, how the consumer-focused company prepares to take on business customers and how the tools enable new levels of productivity.
 
 

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IoT can't be ignored. It needs to be part of any company's strategy.

 
 
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IoT trends in the mobile carrier market

Wireless analyst Chetan Sharma rolled out his numbers on the US mobile market a couple weeks ago, with some indicators of where future growth might come for the carriers. Spoiler alert: It's not in the smart phone market. Sharma writes: Smartphone penetration increased to 81% and roughly 97% of the devices sold now are smartphones....
 
 

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We often hear about SalesForce but overlook their biggest rival, NetSuite. The company is making moves to simplify while they expand their offerings.

 
 
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NetSuite's OneWorld goes Centurion 

It may sound like it is a small step for a business, but NetSuite's announcement that it can now service the business management needs of global enterprises in over 100 countries with the latest set of upgrades to its OneWorld service is quite a significant step.

 
 

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The Intranet used to be a big deal in most large corporations. Today, the mobile app is the key to keeping everyone--CONNECTED and informed.

 
 
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Bye-bye Intranet, Hello Mobile App

Many corporate intranets are not well equipped for mobile usage. Application development platforms like APPrise Mobile offer an alternative. The corporate intranet tries to be a lot of things to a lot of people: a repository for workplace documents, a channel for social collaboration, an employee help desk and a content distribution tool.

 
 

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The calendar has been the same for many years, even with all types of apps to make it "better." But Future looks at the calendar in a new way...and it may be a better way.

 
 
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Future - Calendar events around the clock

Future for iPhone and Apple Watch puts calendar events around the clock. The 24-hour spiral timeline gives an all-day overview at a glance.
 
 

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Catch me today at 245 PM Pacific Standard Time on Business RockStars with Ken Rutkowski. I'll also be on again Monday at 1:45 PM. Each day I'll bring you and the nationwide audience in 185 markets and in 31 million cable TV households the newest in apps, services and cool technology.

 
 

The Comunicano Daily for July 28th, 2015


 
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My co-founder, along with Josh Baylin, in VelocityGrowth, Jeff Belk was one of the key executives who put Qualcomm on the map.

There Jeff, who rose to CMO and CSO, instilled a marketing culture amongst a group of inventors, IP attorneys and engineers. Jeff retired from Qualcomm eight years or so ago, but he remains close to many there. His perspective, as someone close to everyone from Paul Jacobs on down provides him the unique insight to author this piece on the recent news and explain why it may be the best thing to happen to San Diego in years. Now, only if the Chargers get a new football stadium....

 

 
 
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Are Qualcomm Layoffs a Disaster for San Diego---or an Opportunity? | Xconomy

After years of strong corporate and financial growth, the pace of change in the wireless industry has forced a massive global layoff at San Diego-based Qualcomm (NASDAQ: QCOM. If the wireless giant had only 1,000 employees, a layoff of 150 folks would not be big news.
 
 

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As the owner and user of a OnePlus One Android smartphone I can't wait for the Two to be offered. Not only is the OnePlus One the best Android I ever owned, it may be the best value smartphone around. Give a read of the next three stories and see if you would pay more for less.

 

 
 
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How the OnePlus 2 Plans to Be More Than a One-Hit Wonder

Imagine being Dexy's Midnight Runners, circa 1982. "Come On Eileen" just came out of nowhere and is blowing up. It's on every radio station, and playing at every party. Nobody had ever heard of you; now you're everywhere.
 
 

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The OnePlus 2 pushes the boundaries of how cheap a flagship smartphone can be

The bang for your buck ratio here is pretty great There are more options than ever for getting a good, cheap smartphone, and last year's OnePlus One was a standout. For $300, you got a well-made, nice-looking phone with cutting-edge hardware and few compromises to be found (assuming its 5.5-inch size didn't put you off).
 
 

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OnePlus 2: everything you need to know

The OnePlus One was released last year Under the hood Potential buyers were required to obtain an invitation through OnePlus' website before they were able to buy it, with the first 100 handsets offered as part of a "Smash" promotion where people were invited to destroy their existing phone for a chance to buy a One for just $1.
 
 

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The Terminator movies were legendary and help put "the Arnold" on the map once and for all. Never shy about his love of the WWF, largely due to a friendship forged with Jesse "The Body" Ventura years ago, Arnold is going to be featured in a new video game, bringing back his "Terminator" character....Watch the two videos and see how the computer generated graphics look, and how good some of the WWF heels are at acting.....

 

 
 
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Arnold Schwarzenegger WWE Commercial: T2 Bar Scene Reenactment

Okay so Arnold Schwarzenegger has been revisiting a lot of his old Terminator scenes lately, not just in Terminator Genisys which resets and revisits some moments from the first film in different ways, but also in a new commercial for the WWE 2k16 video game.
 
 

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Everyone is looking to one up Uber....and here's a new spin on it.  In London to be a taxi driver you have to pass "The Knowledge." Well now aspiring drivers can learn London streets and make money doing it...

 

 
 
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Taxi app Gett to deliver champagne as Uber battle intensifies

The champagne will be delivered on motorbike by people learning The Knowledge "For the last five years, we've been moving customers around safely and now Gett Clicquot will use the same business model to bring this revolutionary new service to Londoners," said Remo Gerber, Gett's UK CEO.
 
 

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It's not taking long for changes to happen at Cisco follow John Chambers retirement. New people in key positions. Some execs leaving. A flatter, more nimble organization. Sounds like what is also taking shape at Microsoft is happening at Cisco as well.

 

 
 
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Cisco Recruits Two Outsiders as Executives

Cisco Systems Inc.'s new chief executive marked his first day in the job by naming two outsiders to high-profile management posts. Chuck Robbins, who assumed the CEO role at the networking equipment maker Monday after John Chambers' ended his tenure after 20 years, said in a blog post that Zorawar Biri Singh will serve as senior vice president and chief technology officer.
 
 

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If you're a Comcast customer you may be wondering who else is on your WiFi network. Basically Comcast has taken a page out of the European operator's mode of operation, and enabled their subscribers to latch on to other subscribers networks.

 

 
 
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Comcast Hits 10M WiFi Hotspots

Comcast said Monday that it surpassed the milestone of 10 million WiFi hotspots nationwide, including wireless access points installed in public areas and neighborhood hotspots powered by second antennas contained in WiFi gateways deployed in subscriber homes.
 
 

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Verizon has video on the brain. Their new G90 service is starting trials across the USA and is looking like it's closer to becoming a reality.

 

 
 
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Verizon Mobile Video Service Details Uncovered: To Be Called Go90 (Exclusive)

Verizon is getting ready to launch a new mobile video service called Go90 this summer, Variety has learned. Go90 promises users full episodes of TV shows from select networks as well as music videos and other shortform content, and the company will at least initially offer the service entirely free...
 
 

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Last week PayPal went public. This week Visa retorts with an investment in Stripe.

 

 
 
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Visa Invests in Stripe at $5 Billion Valuation and Strikes Commercial Deal, Too

Credit card companies think they have a found an ally in the increasingly competitive world of online payments. Its name is Stripe. Visa has inked a commercial agreement with the payments startup, and has separately made an investment in the San Francisco-based company that values it at $5 billion.
 
 

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The medical world has lagged for years in the area of IT for the physician. Now it seems to be catching up.

 

 
 
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Efficient doctors need IT prescription

Whether using products such as Telehealth, which uses apps and texting to treat patients without the need to visit hospital, Sleepio, an online cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) programme aiming to reduce insomnia, or Simman 3G, a robot that makes sure doctors are prepared to treat patients with allergic reactions, medicine is constantly changing - and GPs, running practices as small businesses, must adapt, cut costs and find innovative treatments.
 
 

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Software Turns Smartphones Into Tools for Medical Research

SAN FRANCISCO - Jody Kearns doesn't like to spend time obsessing about her Parkinson's disease. The 56-year-old dietitian from Syracuse, New York, had to give up bicycling because the disorder affected her balance. But she still works, drives and tries to live a normal life.
 
 

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I love lists of tips. Here are three to help you through your day..

 

 
 
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20 Great Podcasts for Entrepreneurs - Listen up, makers. :) by Product Hunt

A collection curated by Product Hunt, featuring products like The Pitch, StartUp Podcast Season 2, How To Start A Startup , The Twenty Minute VC (podcast), and This is PM Podcast
 
 

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15 Essential Content Creation Apps You Need Right Now

Writing is your drawcard. It's the number one tool you have at your fingertips for marketing an online business. So it needs to be good. You need to write compelling copy that engages readers, gets them to listen up and encourages them to buy.
 
 

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27 travel hacks that even frequent fliers don't know

Even the most seasoned jetsetter will learn a thing or two from these travel hacks.
 
 

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The Comunicano Daily for Tuesday July 21st, 2015


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The rain and humidity in San Diego wasn't the only thing causing the locals to be irritable. Employment giant, sponsor of the football stadium and pretty much the heart of the county's economy, Qualcomm announced there are going to be changes. I am not surprised as the writing has been on the wall since Paul Jacobs moved out, or was moved out of the CEO role about two years ago. The company has been in transition, laying off people in San Diego, offering exit packages to some senior folks, and then hiring on people elsewhere, where costs are lower. This is going to be an ongoing story so I suggest reading the writing locally of Bruce Bigelow of Xconomy once San Diego's media wakes up to the story.

 

 
 
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Qualcomm to Conduct Strategic Review, May Consider Breakup

Qualcomm Inc. is expected to conduct a sweeping strategic review that will look at the possibility of a breakup, among other options, after an activist investor pushed for change at the chip maker. Qualcomm, the world's largest maker of chips used in mobile phones, may announce it is considering that and other options-including returning more cash to shareholders-when it reports fiscal third-quarter results Wednesday, according to...
 
 

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When big brands make moves you have to watch the impact. Chase Bank is making a whole series of moves. First, they are going mobile first. Second they are adopting a very user experience focus. Third they are becoming masters of their own content. This is all happening as the upgrade their services and become more customer friendly online.

 

 
 
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Chase Reboots Online Banking to Resemble Mobile Experience

JPMorgan Chase refreshed its online banking homepage for the first time in three years yesterday. The result looks a lot like the bank's recently revamped mobile site. All the buzz is around mobile banking these days, but online banking still serves more people. Chase has nearly 40 million online users, vs.
 
 

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I read the proposed telco to VoIP story and not much has changed in 12 years since I started VoIPWatch when it comes to the issues. The only difference is now we actually have an FCC Chairman who will see things through.

 

 
 
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FCC Chairman proposes rules for telco transition to VoIP

FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler proposed a set of guidelines that start the process to regulate telephone companies as they transition from a legacy TDM voice infrastructure to IP-based real time communications. Wheeler's rules will be up for consideration at the Commission Open Meeting on August 6.
 
 

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There is no question text is replacing many things. One of the keys is customer relationships and service. But text is more than just a "message" these days. And, with IoT (Internet of Things), sensors, beacons, big data analytics, faster networks and smarter apps, we're going to see things that are all about what pals Robert Scoble and Shel Israel wrote in the "The Age of Context" and which client FollowAnalyticsunderstands with their mobile first approach. In app communications with alerts, notifications and messages is why text is replacing many things.

 

 
 
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Brands Are Using Text to Strengthen Customer Relationships

Chat offers a direct line of communication for timely and personalized interactions A customer walks into a store in search of a black jacket and a new pair of jeans. With so many brands, sizes and styles available, they seek out the nearest sales associate for some help with recommendations.
 
 

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As an AirBnB dweller off and on the last year in various cities (Miami, Seattle, San Jose and now Lisbon) I tend to do one of three things when it comes to meals-shop and cook, go out to dinner, order in.

And, when it the past the idea of ordering in was usually pizza, except in New York City where everything was available by phone, online ordering was a rarity. In the AirBnB era it has exploded.

Now you can order food of all kinds, and either the restaurant or a third party service like Doorstep Delivery or GrubHub will get it to your door. This though is just the start. Watch as pharmacies resume home delivery, see how house calls from doctors return and watch as Amazon with their same day delivery becomes even more finely tuned. But there's going to be one more sector that feels the winds of change. Hotel room service. Why order from a limited menu when you can order from anywhere in town and have better food.

 

 
 
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Online food delivery ordering is about to overtake phone ordering in the US

Getting your dinner to your door is now easier than ever, and thanks to the internet, almost no human interaction is required. While phone orders dominated delivery only five years ago, the balance between meal orders placed over the phone versus those placed online have nearly switched, with internet orders on track to surpass phone orders any minute...
 
 

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There's a reason why cable is losing, and YouTub is just the start. The cable industry knows it which is why they are going mobile. But there's a whole group of "never corders" as YipTV founder Mike Tribolet calls them, and they are causing the shift, and YouTube, which has been around and mobile ready longer, is the early winner.

 

 
 
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YouTube Is Crushing Cable TV, According To Google

Credit: Lionel Bonaventure via Getty Images YouTube is giving cable TV a run for its money. The popular video-sharing platform -- which was acquired by Google in 2006 -- reaches more 18- to 49-year-olds in America than any U.S. cable network, said Google's chief business officer, Omid Kordestani, during an earnings conference call on July 16.
 
 

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If you are part of the world of startups, the next few stories are so, so, so focused on you. First is where the growth is. Second is all about how to hire a marketer. Third is some real pearls of wisdom from Brad Feld about being a "founder" and last is the difference between your lawyer and the company's lawyer.

 

 
 
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The Fastest Growing Areas of Startup Investment in 2015

Earlier this week, we examined the trends in the major categories of startup investment including eCommerce, Software, Social Networking and Education. But which lesser known startup sectors are starting to raise venture dollars? Where are founders finding unique opportunities to innovate?
 
 

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Marketing Shouldn't Be a Dirty Word in Silicon Valley

You could say that I got into marketing (or "growth", if you prefer that euphemism) mostly by accident. It was a right time, right place kind of thing: Upstart had an awesome product and killer team, but they needed a growth strategy.
 
 

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Do We Need A New Word For Entrepreneur? - Feld Thoughts

 
  Has the word entrepreneur become too trendy as to have lost its meaning? I'm hearing it and the word entrepreneurship being used in so many conversations incorrectly. Here's a simple example. On a daily basis, I have an email exchange with someone who says they are an entrepreneur.  
 

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A Startup Lawyer is Not a Founder's Lawyer - Silicon Hills Lawyer

 
  TL;DR Nutshell: It's extremely important to hire independent counsel who isn't incentivized to favor, because of existing relationships, the interests of your investors above those of the company. But it's also important to understand that company counsel represents the best interests of the company, including all stockholders, and that can often conflict with the personal interests of individual founders.  
 

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The Comunicano Daily for Tuesday December 16, 2014

 
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Apple Pay is rolling along.  And like iTunes and the iPhone, more and more people and more retailers are using it. What's funny is Google had Wallet long before Apple Pay, yet the attention being given to Wallet vs. Apple Pay is small while Apple gets the attention.

 

 
 
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Dozens More Companies Sign Up for Apple Pay

The list of companies working with Apple Pay continues to grow. On Tuesday, Apple announced that in recent weeks the company had signed up dozens more banks, retail stores and start-ups to adopt Apple Pay, the company's new e-commerce product, which allows customers to buy things with little more than a wave of their iPhone.
 
 

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Drones continue to be in the news.  Two stories today of note.

 

 
 
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Why our drone future is for real -- someday

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos wants to ship goods using unmanned aircraft. Some are skeptical, others nervous, but drones already are improving the way we live. In 2002, a stroke-like event turned Henry Evans into a quadriplegic, depriving him of almost all ability to move.

 
 

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Drone-Hunting Blimp To Launch Over Washington, DC

On Friday, the North American Aerospace Defense Command, NORAD, will launch a giant drone-hunting blimp over Maryland's Aberdeen Proving Grounds just east of Washington D.C. The system includes a 242-foot balloon (technically called an aerostat because it's connected to the ground) that can stay up for a month at a time and a radar to detect - among other potential threats- drones.
 
 

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Ever wonder which companies protect your data, and which may not?  This story may make you think twice.

 

 
 
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We Asked 29 Tech Companies If Their Employees Can Access Your Personal Data

Traditionally, privacy worries for consumers and tech companies have been limited to keeping information secure from third parties or hackers. But a series of internal abuses show that tech company employees often have universal access to user information, as well as reason - be it pure voyeuristic curiosity or, in the worst cases, a vendetta - to look at our whereabouts, spending, and of the most private corners of our lives.
 
 

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Changes in tax laws in the EU may have a major impact on services, pricing and availability.

 

 
 
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EU tax change is about to hammer small digital service providers

From the beginning of January, new EU tax rules will force many businesses offering online services across the Union to take on a load of new administrative responsibilities. The changes have caused particular consternation among micro-businesses providing such services - for a classic example, think about an individual who's making a small amount selling knitting...
 
 

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In the UK BT is looking more like they are getting back into the mobile business in a big way, buying up EE/Orange/T-Mobile UK.

 

 
 
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British Telecom Company BT Is in Exclusive Talks to Buy EE

LONDON - The British telecommunications company BT said on Monday that it had entered into exclusive talks to acquire the British mobile phone business of Orange of France and Deutsche Telekom of Germany. Orange and Deutsche Telekom confirmed last month that they were in early stage discussions to sell their joint venture EE to BT, Britain's former telecommunications monopoly.
 
 

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Friends. Enemies. It's hard to figure out what Bose and Apple are these days, but one things for certain, Bose is going from hardware into the services arena and wants to play in the Internet of Things. They have the devices, now they want to dance to the music.

 

 
 
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Bose May Be Working on Streaming Music Service

Apple's Beats Electronics and Bose already compete in the headphone and speaker markets, but it appears that Bose may be gearing up to compete with Beats in another area -- streaming music. A Bose job listing first noticed by (via VentureBeat ) seeks a Senior User Experience Designer to work on prototyping Bose's "next generation streaming music platform and ecosystem of products."
 
 

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For small business social media has lots of value, but that means paying attention to it. Yelp is now moving into the Attention Management business.

 

 
 
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Yelp Introduces New App For Business Owners With Push Notifications

Yelp is releasing a new app for business owners. Unsurprisingly called "Yelp for Business Owners," it's available for iOS and Android users in all countries and languages in which Yelp currently operates. Until today, business owners had to tolerate a less than optimal experience accessing their account information on a smartphone.
 
 

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Ever wonder why you see ads for web sites you've visited? Retargeting is the answer. And it seems to work very well.

 

 
 
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90% of marketers say retargeting now as good as search ads, email marketing

Over 90 percent of marketers say that retargeted ads are as good as or better than the gold standard in digital marketing, search ads, according to a recent survey by leading retargeter AdRoll. Why? Intent, says AdRoll president and CMO Adam Berke.
 
 

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Here's a great read on focus and getting things done.  Ask yourself if you're applying what's suggested or not.

 

 
 
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How to be the most productive person in your office - and still get home by 5:30 p.m.

Some days the to-do list seems bottomless. Just looking at it is exhausting. We all want to know how to stop being lazy and get more done. I certainly want the answer. So I decided to call a friend who manages to do this - and more.
 
 

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The Comunicano Daily for Tuesday November 18, 2014

 
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Today starts WebRTC World in San Jose, CA. Already Cisco has made news at their own event a few hundred miles south in Los Angeles with a new service called Project Squared (see a few stories down)....Nokia is back and at the Slush Conference in Helsinki with an Android based tablet to rival the iPad....Technology has moved so fast that some are claiming the smartphone is now passe and connected devices are the new "IT" thing....Better image recognition is alive and well, so watch for new cameras to hit the market that show even more.....NYC Lync's Up with gigabit hotspots resurrecting an idea from another era but now which just may work...New services come to life so you can pay where you are or whomever you know, all part of the mobile payment extravaganza...Those stories and more...all, are just waiting for YOU...

 

 
 
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Nokia surprises with Android tablet

Nokia is launching an Android-powered tablet, marking the Finnish company's return to consumer electronics. The surprise launch pits the firm against Microsoft, which completed its takeover of Nokia's previous mobile-devices business in April. The N1 tablet is due to go on sale in China towards the start of 2015, ahead of other countries.
 
 

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The internet of Things is still in its infancy, and while more and more devices in our homes, cars and on our bodies are getting connected, one has to wonder just how much longer our phones and tablets will be the connective tissue or the network becomes even more attachable.....

 

 
 
 

Giants have to move quickly as smartphone era ends

 
 

The smartphone's day in the sun was a comparatively brief one in the end. Compared to PCs or landline telephones, the smartphone era could be dated to just seven years, from the iPhone launch to the end of 2014, when two giants, Samsung and Intel, admitted that they needed to look beyond handsets for growth in devices.

 
 

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If this works in New York City I would expect to see more hotboxes around the world popping up. Think of all the Red Phone Booths in London just beaming away....as WiFi and GigaBit connectivity become common place...(go back to the story about IoT)

 

 
 
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The Plan to Turn NYC's Old Payphones Into Free Gigabit Wi-Fi Hot Spots

New York announced the winning bid to transform the existing payphone infrastructure. LinkNYC will bring free gigabit Wi-Fi connectivity to some 7000 street towers. It'll be the largest and most ambitious Wi-Fi network of its kind in the world.

 
 

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Video imagery is getting batter and better. When you see how small cameras are today and just what they can do, plus what the software behind them is capable of you just have to SMILE....

 

 
 
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Hi-tech camera takes surveillance into third dimension

Banks on the mainland are testing an advanced surveillance camera technology that could be installed at key sites including Tiananmen Square and Beijing airport, according to the start-up company behind the system.
 
 

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Researchers Announce Breakthrough in Image-Recognition Software

Two groups of scientists, working independently, have created artificial intelligence software capable of recognizing and describing the content of photographs and videos with far greater accuracy than ever before, sometimes even mimicking human levels of understanding. Until now, so-called computer vision has largely been limited to recognizing individual objects.

 
 

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Cisco rolled out two new products yesterday and one, Project Squared seems to feel a lot like a corporate update and roll up of all their services to me.....

 

 
 
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Cisco launches new telepresence system, Project Squared mobile app

Cisco is busy retooling its collaboration portfolio with a telepresence system that uses less bandwidth and power and Project Squared, a mobile app that offers video conferencing, document sharing and other tools. Cisco on Monday launched a new three-screen telepresence system designed to cut costs on bandwidth and deployment as well as a mobile collaboration effort dubbed Project Squared.

 
 

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How we pay and what we pay with is changing and so is the whole payments industry. ApplePay and Google Wallet are only the tip of the iceberg. PayPal and others started the revolution, but the new players are far from all known yet...Everyone wants their piece of the action....

 

 
 
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Alibaba launches in Australia with Alipay

Alibaba founder and billionaire Jack Ma's payment offshoot company is eyeing aggressive expansion in Australia. Alipay, already China's largest third-party online payment solution company, is opening an office in Sydney targeting local small and medium-sized businesses.

 
 

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Snapchat to Let You Send Money to Friends, Thanks to Square

Snapchat unveiled Snapcash on Monday, a new payments feature that allows users to send and receive money from friends through the app's private messaging service, CEO Evan Spiegel told Re/code. The new tool is powered by payments company Square, which operates its own similar service called Square Cash that allows people to send and receive money through its Cash app or email.
 
 

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The Comunicano Daily for Monday November 17, 2014

 
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You can always tell when the news cycle is starting to slow down. It's when dirt, rumors and soft news starts to take hold. That's what this morning feels like as I scanned looking for stories. The holiday period is here and the next few weeks will be more about Cyber Monday, Black Friday and all the offers, deals become very visible.  

The first story is really revealing about Facebook, and how they basically build their own technology after looking at everything else when they can. It helps them maintain a market lead, and they don't provide a vendor the ability to then sell things to the competition.

 

 
 
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Facebook's New Data Center Is Bad News for Cisco 

As it announced that the Altoona data center is now serving traffic to some of its 1.35 billion users, the company also revealed how its engineers pieced together the computer network that moves all that digital information through the facility.

 
 

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Facebook recognizes that it is in a battle with other social networks including LinkedIn and Twitter. As Facebook begins to be part of everyday life and as people cross lines between work and play, Facebook is launching At Work to address the market.

 

 
 
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Facebook is making 'Facebook at Work' so you can Facebook at work

You already Facebook at work, so here's "Facebook at Work." Facebook is working on extending its network beyond the social realm and into the professional world, according to the Financial Times . The company's new, enterprise-focused product will be similar to the functionality of its current site, with a newsfeed, groups and messaging capability.
 
 

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Acquisitions usually lead to changes within the company acquired. The much heralded NEST purchase of Dropcam is now showing the signs of how things really can be as the founders of the aquired company are not always as happy once they become employees.

 

 
 
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Unrest at Nest Labs

Sitting on stage last week at a San Francisco conference, Greg Duffy, the 28-year-old co-founder and CEO of Dropcam, which makes Internet-connected video cameras, fielded questions from an audience of startup founders. It should have been a time to celebrate. After all, last June, Duffy sold Dropcam to Nest Labs for $555 million.
 
 

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Country music icon Garth Brooks has always listened to the beat of his own drummer when it comes to his brand. His attempt to use the Internet has been frought with challenges and of late things are not really going his way.

 

 
 
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How Garth Brooks took on the internet - and lost

"This is where I make my stand." So Garth Brooks proclaims in the opening lines of the new album, Man Against Machine, his first collection of new original material since 2001. He isn't just flexing his muscles.
 
 

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The net neutrality issue is becoming an everyday news item in light of the recent comments from President Obama. More and more the argument is about the have's and the have nots, but the reality is what the Internet was designed to be and what broadband is about are two different things now and we need a whole relook at the opportunities just what the Internet is and what broadband will be.

 

 
 
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Wolff: Obama punts on net neutrality

President Obama's decision to advocate the reclassification of Internet broadband services as a utility under Title II of the Telecommunications Act - that is, making broadband subject to all the laws that regulate telephone service - seems particularly Obama-like: squirrelly and lofty at the same time. It's squirrelly because it will never happen.
 
 

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Apple and Google are shaking up payments. Now that they are in the whole mobile payments world is expected to grow. This will create new opportunities on a variety of levels for suppliers of new technology.

 

 
 
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U.S. Mobile Payments Market to Boom by 2019, Research Firm Says

Just a few years ago, the idea of paying for things at the checkout counter with your smartphone seemed like a technology company pipe dream. That dream, according to payments industry experts, is beginning to become a reality.
 
 

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A new fund to help fuel growth of companies started by people who are not as well entrenched in the "Silicon Valley" scene is launching. This is one more step on the path to greater democratization of opportunity and certainly a welcome addition.

 

 
 
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Unshackled, a New Angel Fund, Forms to Back Immigrant Entrepreneurs

Some of the U.S.'s most successful tech companies, including Intel Corp. and Google Inc., have been built by immigrants, and many people who come to the U.S. aspire to work in or start tech companies. Without work visas, though, they don't get far.
 
 

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Down under in Australia, there's lots of geography that's not populated enough for wired or even wireless broadband. But Google and Telstra have a potential solution, using hot air balloons. Guess you don't need to be a Balloonatic after all to see that there's more than hot up there.

 

 
 
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VIDEO: Google's Bal-LOON-y trial gets QLD Telstra spectrum

Google is extending trials of its broadband-by-balloon project entitled Project Loon, and while it has already previously conducted some tests off the coast of Queensland, it is partnering to trial 20 more balloons in Western Queensland in late December.
 
 

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Robotics, drones, and IoT (Internet of Things) are nowdays a part of everyday conversation and in some cases, a safer work environment may come from it all.

 

 
 
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Knightscope's Autonomous Robots Will Take on Security Jobs Normally Held by Humans

As the sun set on a warm November afternoon, a quartet of five-foot-tall, 300-pound shiny white robots patrolled in front of Building 1 on Microsoft's Silicon Valley campus. Looking like a crew of slick Daleks imbued with the grace of Fred Astaire, they whirred quietly across the concrete in different directions, stopping and turning in place so as to avoid running into trash cans, walls, and other obstacles.

 
 

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My good friend Manrique Brenes, longtime Skype hardware guru is out on his own with a very interesting startup, Blossom. Yesterday he launched his rewards campaign on Kickstarter . It's all about water, your lawn or garden, the environment and saving people money. Given the drought conditions in California that we're all living through, his idea is timely. Even if you don't have a lawn, helping his campaign, either by telling someone about it, or puchasing a Blossom, would be a move in the right direction.

 

 
 
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Blossom™: The Smart Watering Controller

Blossom is raising funds for Blossom™: The Smart Watering Controller on Kickstarter! Automate your sprinklers with real-time weather data and complete control from your phone to lower your water bill up to 30%.
 
 

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