China’s Congress Passes Cryptography Law

Computer monitors morph into chain linksIt takes effect Jan. 1.

By Rick Richardson

The Standing Committee of the 13th National People’s Congress in China has passed a cryptography law, and it will be effective on January 1, 2020, according to a Chinese media report.

MORE TECH THIS WEEK: Microsoft Packs 4 Tools into 1 Nifty App | Gain 42 Workdays by Banning PowerPoint | Make That Old Whiteboard ‘Smart’ | What Happens If You Don’t Use Airplane Mode in Flight? | IRS Clamps Down on Unreported Cryptocurrency Profits | The Big 8 Next Tech Disruptors
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The announcement came one day after Chinese President Xi Jinping’s call on the country to seize opportunities in blockchain technology.
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Microsoft Packs 4 Tools into 1 Nifty App

Illustration for Office mobile appExcel, Word, PowerPoint, and PDFs? Yes, please.

By Rick Richardson

Want to put Microsoft’s Office software on an iOS or Android device? Soon you won't have to download individual versions of Word, Excel, and PowerPoint to use them.

MORE TECH THIS WEEK: Gain 42 Workdays by Banning PowerPoint | New Storage Tech on a Glass Coaster | Go Paperless with the Best Smart Notebooks | Want Faster WiFi? Of Course You Do | Advanced Tech Drives Financial Services Growth | Microsoft and Oracle Join Cloud Forces to Take on Amazon | Flying Taxis Could Beat Cars for Efficiency | How to Fix Coffee-Shop Wi-Fi
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In an announcement from its Ignite conference in Orlando, Microsoft revealed that it's beginning to publicly test a new version of the Office app that will combine the three popular apps into one primary, centralized Office app.
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Gain 42 Workdays by Banning PowerPoint

Woman in business attire with papers flying around behind her backLet the briefing document be your ally.

By Rick Richardson

According to Jeff Bezos and Jack Dorsey, replacing PowerPoint presentations with hard-copy briefing documents is an incredible timesaver and productivity boost, so much so that banning PowerPoint might be the smartest thing a leader can do.

MORE TECH THIS WEEK: New Storage Tech on a Glass Coaster | Google Shakes Up Business Fundamentals | Google Announces New Privacy Enhancements | When a Doorbell Raises Privacy Concerns | Casinos Deploy A.I. for an Even Better House Advantage
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If you follow their advice, what should this “briefing document” look like? The most time-honored and reality-tested briefing document is what's sometimes called an executive summary, initially developed and refined by Tom Sant, who is without question the world's top expert in sales proposals.
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New Storage Tech on a Glass Coaster

Man holding film canisters, woman holding piece of glassA glass coaster can hold a 143-minute movie... but it's not for consumers.

By Rick Richardson

The world has been hard at work, trying to find solutions to store the 100 zettabytes of data that are expected to hit the cloud by 2023.

MORE TECH THIS WEEK: Google Shakes Up Business Fundamentals | Make That Old Whiteboard ‘Smart’ | What Happens If You Don’t Use Airplane Mode in Flight? | IRS Clamps Down on Unreported Cryptocurrency Profits | The Big 8 Next Tech Disruptors
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Microsoft and Warner Bros., for their parts, have just demonstrated why they think they are ahead of the game – both in protecting past archives and in storing those to come.
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Google Shakes Up Business Fundamentals

Illustration of image search"Visual Search" and a slew of AI-powered tools shakes up supply chains, consumer habits.

By Rick Richardson

Visual search – the ability to initiate a search query using an image captured by the camera lens on a mobile device – has increasingly become a channel that can drive consumers from becoming aware of a product to making a purchase.

MORE TECH THIS WEEK: Make That Old Whiteboard ‘Smart’ | Go Paperless with the Best Smart Notebooks | Want Faster WiFi? Of Course You Do | A New Tool for Security Management | Advanced Tech Drives Financial Services Growth | Go Off-Grid with Satellite System Iridium GO! | Microsoft and Oracle Join Cloud Forces to Take on Amazon
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Gartner classifies visual search as an emerging technology, which puts it right on par with findings from an eMarketer survey suggesting that few consumers "regularly" use it.
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Make That Old Whiteboard ‘Smart’

https://amzn.to/2Js5ZeDReusable, inexpensive and app-oriented.

By Rick Richardson

You can now bring your old whiteboards into the 21st century with Rocketbook Beacons. These four re-stickable, reusable Beacons convert your writing surface into a smartboard by integrating with popular cloud services in the free Rocketbook app.

MORE TECH THIS WEEK: Go Paperless with the Best Smart Notebooks | Google Announces New Privacy Enhancements | When a Doorbell Raises Privacy Concerns | New Gadget Measures Water Purity | Casinos Deploy AI for an Even Better House Advantage | The Argument for a Robot Tax
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Brainstorm the next great mission with your crew, capture and share your ideas, and then take your Beacons with you to your next adventure. The Beacons Go-Pack is $15.
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Go Paperless with the Best Smart Notebooks

Illustration of reMarkable notebook
The reMarkable "smart" notebook

Need a smart pen? There's one of those, too.

By Rick Richardson

Whether you love paper and pen or prefer to live paper-free, you still probably need to take notes, read PDFs or maybe even illustrate an idea with a sketch.

MORE TECH THIS WEEK: Google Announces New Privacy Enhancements | What Happens If You Don’t Use Airplane Mode in Flight? | IRS Clamps Down on Unreported Cryptocurrency Profits | The Big 8 Next Tech Disruptors | New Translator Gadget Could Be a Traveler’s Best Friend
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Smart notebooks help bring ideas typically captured on paper into a digital format. Some smart notebooks also involve real paper.
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Google Announces New Privacy Enhancements

sample screenHow does rolling auto-delete sound?

By Rick Richardson

Google is kicking off Cybersecurity Awareness Month by rolling out new tools that give customers greater control over their privacy when using Google Maps, YouTube and Google Assistant. The company has confirmed that it’s launching incognito mode for Maps, which will debut on Android this month before expanding to iOS “soon.”

MORE TECH THIS WEEK: What Happens If You Don’t Use Airplane Mode in Flight? | Want Faster WiFi? Of Course You Do | Advanced Tech Drives Financial Services Growth | Go Off-Grid with Satellite System Iridium GO! | Salesforce Buys Data Visualization Company Tableau | Flying Taxis Could Beat Cars for Efficiency
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When you turn on incognito mode in Maps, your Maps activity on that device, like the places you search for, won’t be saved to your Google Account and won’t be used to personalize your Maps experience, Google’s Eric Miraglia wrote in a blog post.
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What Happens If You Don’t Use Airplane Mode in Flight?

Woman sitting on plane looking out window while holding phoneRemember roaming charges?

By Rick Richardson

You hear the warning every time you fly: Please set all devices to airplane mode. But what happens if you don't?

It’s not that long ago that airlines stopped telling passengers to keep their mobile phones, tablets, e-readers and other devices turned off throughout the flight.

Why airplane mode?

We’re asked to turn our devices off or to put them in airplane mode because of electromagnetic interference from phones, tablets, e-readers, electronic headsets and more. Because some planes were built before these became a thing, it took a while for the industry to make sure it was entirely safe to use them.

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Want Faster WiFi? Of Course You Do

LogoWi-Fi 6 devices clear the final hurdle.

By Rick Richardson

Expect to see a surge in devices supporting the new faster WiFi 6 standard.

MORE TECH THIS WEEK: When a Doorbell Raises Privacy Concerns | IRS Clamps Down on Unreported Cryptocurrency Profits | The Big 8 Next Tech Disruptors | Anti-Robocall Legislation Sails Through House in Landslide Vote | Microsoft Issues Warning to 800 Million Windows 10 Users | Breaking Up Big Tech Will Be Really Hard to Do | New Translator Gadget Could Be a Traveler’s Best Friend | New TSA Tech Will Let You Keep Laptops, Liquids in Bags
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Wi-Fi Alliance has just announced the WiFi Certified 6 program for companies such as Apple and Samsung to officially label their devices as supporting the higher-capacity IEEE 802.11ax protocol.
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When a Doorbell Raises Privacy Concerns

The Ring doorbell


Is your police department monitoring Amazon’s Ring doorbell camera feeds in your neighborhood?

By Rick Richardson

More than 400 police agencies across the United States are working with the Amazon-owned Ring home surveillance system, and now you can check if your local department is one of them.

MORE TECH THIS WEEK: A New Tool for Security Management | New Gadget Measures Water Purity | Casinos Deploy A.I. for an Even Better House Advantage | The Argument for a Robot Tax | Front-Facing Display Puts DJI Osmo Action Ahead of GoPro | What Your Car Will Know About You | New Translator Gadget Could Be a Traveler’s Best Friend | Flying Taxis Could Beat Cars for Efficiency | How to Beat the Online Sales Tax
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Ring disclosed the number late month, and it’s double what reports had previously revealed. It also published an interactive map where anyone can check whether their hometown cops are part of the controversial effort through which police can see all the Ring cameras in a given neighborhood, can seamlessly request the footage and are encouraged to promote the device.

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IRS Clamps Down on Unreported Cryptocurrency Profits

The letters are "proposals," not bills, in IRS lingo.

By Rick Richardson

Cryptocurrency investors in the United States are receiving letters from the Internal Revenue Service that are proposing backdated tax payments relating to the trade of virtual assets.

MORE TECH THIS WEEK: A New Tool for Security Management | New Gadget Measures Water Purity | Casinos Deploy A.I. for an Even Better House Advantage | The Argument for a Robot Tax | Front-Facing Display Puts DJI Osmo Action Ahead of GoPro | What Your Car Will Know About You | New Translator Gadget Could Be a Traveler’s Best Friend | Flying Taxis Could Beat Cars for Efficiency | How to Beat the Online Sales Tax
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Some traders are reportedly receiving notices asking for input on revised tax returns, based on estimates of profit generated by cryptocurrency-related activities.
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A New Tool for Security Management

Illustration of securityEasy onboarding and offloading of new users.

By Rick Richardson

A new security product has been launched, and it’s packed with features for a reasonable price.

MORE TECH THIS WEEK: New Gadget Measures Water Purity | The Big 8 Next Tech Disruptors | Anti-Robocall Legislation Sails Through House in Landslide Vote | Microsoft Issues Warning to 800 Million Windows 10 Users | Breaking Up Big Tech Will Be Really Hard to Do | New Translator Gadget Could Be a Traveler’s Best Friend | How to Fix Coffee-Shop Wi-Fi
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Authen2cate is a single-sign-on (SSO) and multifactor authentication (MFA) service provider. Authen2cate provides a full-service, end-to-end solution that includes consulting services, implementation, integration, and ongoing maintenance and support.
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