Latest Updates

The Smart Rifle

The concerning crime rates across the country have inspired many women toward investing the time and money into becoming armed. Besides carrying a weapon for self-defense, many women enjoy the sports of hunting or target shooting. The latest technology may change these sports in the near future.

Military-Like Technology

A company based in Austin, Texas, designed a rifle that comes equipped with a scope activated trigger only previously used by the military. Manufactured with an on-board computer and laser system, the rifle provides even the most amateur of shooters with the ability to nail targets at long distances. The Tracking Point is available as a traditional bolt-action, long-range hunting rifle or in various semi-automatic tactical models. Each features the technology to capably aim and hit a target at distances of up to 0.3 or 0.5 miles away. The weapon also has the ability to hit moving targets traveling at speeds of 10 to 20 miles per hour.

Known as “tag-and-shoot” technology, the scope offers a full-color, graphic display. By depressing a button near the trigger, a shooter engages a laser on a desired target. Though the shooter may pull the trigger, the rifle will not shoot until the scope finds the precise position. The computer in the scope of the “smart rifle” also calculates environmental variables that include trigger shake, target distance and wind resistance.

The TrackingPoint additionally features a Wi-Fi transmitter that enables hunters to stream audio/visual information to a nearby mobile device. The computer also records all the action to replay via a device or to upload to social media. The company reports that the weapon spent three years in development and represents a one-of-a-kind design. However, the rifle and its advanced technology are a bit of a luxury item, as depending on the model chosen, the starting price is $7,500.

Wise Choice for Civilians?

Though impressive, not all are thrilled at the prospect of the rifle being on the market. Hardcore hunters feel that the weapon’s capabilities take the skill and challenge out of hunting. For an animal to become eligible for Boone and Crockett recognition, the rifle used must meet the standards of Fair Chase. The TrackingPoint does not qualify. Hunters must decide individually whether ethics trump legality.

Others are more concerned about the possibility that the rifle might end up in the wrong hands. The many senseless shootings that continue making the headlines leaves some to express understandable concern that the TrackingPoint could pose a danger to the public if purchased by someone with mental health issues or other grudges to resolve. Especially in lieu of the long-range capability, the rifle might serve as a deadly sniper weapon.

Company representatives respond that consumers are only able to purchase the rifle directly from TrackingPoint. President Schauble also assures that the company takes the time to know individual customers and plans to implement a vettng process. Further, he shares, the lithium-ion powered scopes are password protected. The rifle continues to function independent of the scope. However, the precision tracking ability becomes disabled if the appropriate code is not entered by the owner.

Mobile:

4 Mobile Apps That Can Reinforce Professional Development

MOBILE APP

Today’s workforce never stops learning and honing professional skills. Even if you’re completely done with school, you’ll likely need to attend training sessions and take professional development courses to get ahead in your career. Some of these learning experiences will hinge on information retention, while other situations will encourage you take a hands-on approach to problem solving. Here are four mobile apps that can reinforce your career training and professional development efforts.

Anki

This is an extremely powerful, multi-platform flashcard tool. You can completely customize every aspect of the flashcards, so that you can drill yourself on any type of content: pictures, graphs, color-coded text, scientific notation, and foreign languages. All of your flashcard decks can be accessed online with cloud synchronization. One of the more unique features of Anki is that it will automatically remind you to brush up on a card deck once enough time passes, so that you don’t forget it.

Evernote

This is the like the ultimate locker for information and notes. Create custom folders and record text, photos, attachments, and audio quickly. The no-nonsense layout makes it easy for you to just access your information and review your notes. Companies can also use business accounts to share folders and collaborate on files. Evernote comes with multi-platform and web browser support, so that you can review notes from any location.

Notability

Do you remember things better if you write them out by hand? Notability gives you this option, creating a versatile workspace that welcomes both handwritten and print text. This is the ultimate app for document annotations – take handwritten notes in the margins, add stamps, and highlight key points for easy perusal later. This app’s special handwriting mode allows you to utilize the entire screen to scribble notes, which are then resized to fit the document.

Mind Vault

This memorization assistant app can help you recall significant key points from your professional training in a snap. Save snippets that you need to memorize in the Mind Vault, and it will slowly quiz you on your knowledge and retention of the material.

Companies that offer extensive IT training get to reap the benefits of having employees who understand the latest software systems and programming languages. Professionals can give themselves a competitive edge by taking their professional development seriously and using mobile apps to reinforce the knowledge they gain during training sessions and certification classes.

Around The Web

last update: March 27, 2015

Mobile:

Apps that Help Medical Professionals Provide Better Health Care

ucm368666

When patients come to you, they need help. Applications for modern phones and tablets can help you diagnose and treat them faster and better. As with other fields, apps for medical professionals vary in quality.

This article presents several apps that medical professionals find very useful.

UpToDate

With over 30 positive research studies on its side, this app proves clinical decision support is very beneficial to hospitals and medical providers. UpToDate’s goal is to help subscribing physicians and hospitals lower mortality rates and shorten hospital-stay lengths by providing evidence-based content that helps doctors make more-accurate diagnoses.

Doximity

Designed exclusively for healthcare professionals, Doximity offers professional networking for physicians. While much of this app’s features exist to help doctors connect with colleagues and find new work opportunities, the app also connects you to the latest journal articles to help your patients. This app’s makers built in encryption that provides a HIPAA-compliant online environment.

iScrub

The name of this app is not a cute reference to medical scrubs. This hand-hygiene tracking app helps a medical staff’s managers know who washes their hands and when. Unofficial observers use iScrub to document whether individual staff members follow hand-washing protocols as they come into contact with patients. Doctors, nurses and other staff who skip hand cleanings receive notification at the end of their shifts that they need to be more mindful of hand washing.

McGraw-Hill Nurse’s Drug Handbook

Drug handbooks have been in print for decades, and there ought to be at least one on a hospital’s every floor. As you likely know, these handbooks help advise medical staffs about the safe administration of thousands of drugs. This app puts McGraw-Hill’s drug handbook inside its user’s phone or tablet. Its important features include special icons that denote high-alert medications, safety inserts that explain proper handling of hazardous drugs and adverse-reaction treatment advice.

Skyscape Medical Library

This app gives you access to a dense array of medical resources. The free version includes a feature-rich medical calculator, 400 drug-dosing calculators, and evidence-based clinical information for hundreds of diseases. It also includes clinical-news alerts, drug alerts, trial results and journal summaries.

A premium membership in Skyscape gives you access to several important medical references, like Taber’s Cyclopedic Medical Dictionary and Davis’s Drug Guide for Nurses.

AliveECG

You can monitor a patient’s most-vital statistics with this app. To use this app, your patients will need to download AliveECG and purchase the companion heart-monitoring smartphone accessory. The app allows you to add patients’ symptoms and notes about their cases. It also features automatic two-way syncing and unlimited ECG storage.

Epocrates

This is the most widely-used professional-medicine app, and you likely already know about it. If you do not, think of it as a Physician’s Desk Reference inside your smartphone.

To find out which apps will work the best for you and your patients, you ultimately have to try out a few and decide for yourself. The only great apps are those you actually use!

The Use of Technology in the Acquisition and Distribution of Knowledge

sew

Knowledge transfer and knowledge management within a business or organization go hand-in-hand. It’s impossible or inefficient to implement one and not the other. By transferring knowledge from person to person effectively, a company can better utilize new information to improve the overall performance of the business.

What is Knowledge Transfer?

The simplest definition of knowledge transfer and management is the efficient process of moving information throughout a business or organization. The overall goal is to properly collect, share and distribute knowledge by utilizing personal interactions and emerging technologies. However, proper management should not be confused with simple communication; it is far more than that. The most valuable information to a company resides in several places and can be hard to explain. Acquiring, archiving and distributing this knowledge so that it reaches the most people and has the greatest effect is the true challenge.

Organizational theory classifies knowledge transfer by defining two different types of information: Tacit and explicit. Tacit knowledge is created and held within a highly skilled and experienced individual. It is difficult to express and requires the use of mentoring or personal interactions to effectively distribute. Explicit knowledge, on the other hand, is information that can be easily transferred through the use of basic communication technology such as documents, emails and memos.

How is Knowledge Transferred?

Organizational theory defines four basic modes of transferring knowledge from person to person:

1. Socialization – This is the most common method of knowledge transfer. The most important aspect of this means of distribution is proper communication between an experienced employee and the employee learning the information. A typical method is to create a shared or understandable experience that the recipient can relate to.

2. Externalization – Articulating information from the mind into words or ideas can be difficult. This form of transfer is best completed through the use of analogies and metaphors.

3. Combination – As the name suggests, this is the process of acquiring and combining different knowledge into a codified system that, ultimately, leads to the creation of new, usable information.

4. Internalization – Another way to name this transfer method is “on-the-job training” or “learning-by-doing”. The most efficient method of internalization is the use of oral presentations or verbal diagrams.

Technology and Knowledge Transfer

Businesses are beginning to see the importance of accumulating, distributing and keeping knowledge within their organization. Companies that want to remain competitive within their industry must utilize technology to facilitate this goal. Tacit knowledge can leak from an organization like water through fingers, so it is important to utilize technology to retain this difficult to acquire information. Repositories and refineries of knowledge allow a company to express and compile tacit and explicit information so that it can be distributed among employees. Information technology such as video conferencing, social media and presentation software represents the vehicles businesses use to pass this knowledge on to others within the organization.

A company that has figured out how to acquire, retain and distribute knowledge efficiently and with minimal “leakage” will have an advantage over competitors who do not practice solid transfer and management techniques. Utilizing personal interactions and information technology will ensure that information is used efficiently.

Protecting Yourself in the Cloud

cloud-storage

Things are changing in the world of data storage as more companies and individuals turn to the cloud to store information. From helpdesks who can now help customers globally through cloud computing to an individual who can now share photos with distant relatives using sites like Dropbox, the use of internet-based storage has grown significantly. Yet, recent news reports demonstrate the importance of protecting yourself when you use internet-based storage for both personal and business use.

Password Safety

Recently, news media outlets were full of reports of celebrities whose personal photos were accessed from their iCloud accounts. Apple’s investigation revealed that there had been no breach in their system but due to a targeted attack on “user names, passwords and security questions.” Too often, users choose the same passwords and security questions for all internet sites, making it easy for hackers to gain access. A list of the most obvious passwords show that too many people use easy-to-guess passwords, including “123456,” “password” or “abc123.” Other passwords that security experts recommend against are your name, your children’s name or the name of a pet. They also recommend changing passwords periodically as added protection.

Two-Factor Authentication

Two-factor authentication requires an additional step when you sign into an online account. Some websites send a code via text message that must be entered along with your password, while others require login approvals when you sign in from an unfamiliar computer. Although not all websites offer two-factor authentication, if a site does provide the service, using them can add another layer of protection to your online storage.

Avoid Linking Accounts

Linking accounts, known as daisy-chaining in the computer world, can open you up to hackers as well. Using Facebook, Twitter or Google in order to access other social media sites, such as Pinterest, can allow a hacker access to all of those sites at one time. Before using a social media site to sign into another social media site, consider what a hacker could gain access to if they learned your password to that site. If any compromising photos or bank account information could be accessed, do not link the accounts.

Never Use the Same Password or Secret Question

When setting up accounts, create different passwords for different sites to make it more difficult for a hacker to gain access to everything you store on the cloud. In addition, choose a different secret question and answer whenever possible. If your secret question is always your mother’s maiden name, it would not be difficult for a hacker to access your password even if you do use good password practices.

By following these simple tips, it will be more difficult for hackers to gain access to the information you have stored on the cloud and keep your personal information safe. It is also important to back up all data, both on the cloud and on your computer, on a regular basis to protect from loss should something go wrong. A stolen laptop could result in loss of all photos and documents if it falls into the hands of a talented hacker.

  • Follow TechVert

Science:

Rising Technology for Successful Chiropractic Offices

Mixing massage, pressure and spinal adjustments into one treatment plan, chiropractic techniques have been practiced for decades with minimal technology aiding the professional. As more gadgets enter the marketplace every month, innovative chiropractors are seeing the benefits for their practice and loyal patients. From direct to indirect technology, adjusting the spine has become even more precise and relieving.

Not Just X-rays

Whether you’re a stellar athlete or a typical office worker, the body confronts poor posture and repetitive movement each day. Chiropractors used to rely strictly on exams and x-rays for diagnoses, but newer technology makes certain body parts clearer for treatment. Foot scanners depicting posture and weight distribution tells the chiropractor volumes about daily movement. They can adjust the feet and spine for patients to walk taller and straighter. This technology can be used at each appointment to see improvements in real-time.

Merging Care and Social Media

Chiropractic technology isn’t just about treatment equipment, but also includes communication with clientele. Practices readily employing social media stay in patients’ minds to encourage more visits. Professionals can post informational blogs, tweets and updates to better patients’ lives. Just a basic update puts the practice’s name in the person’s mind, making it possible for a new appointment to be scheduled. Even harness new clients as updates are shared or commented on. The virtual world has endless opportunities.

Space Technology for the Medical Profession

One of the main duties for chiropractors is evaluating the spine. Professionals in the past had to manually feel and diagnose a patient based on experience, schooling and talent. Today, chiropractors supplement their training with vertebrae scanners. With a patient lying comfortably on a table, the scanner bounces a signal off vertebrae to have a more precise calculation of necessary adjustments. They can even print a copy of the findings to place in a patient’s chart, making the information concrete for future reference.

More than a Table

Patients are more comfortable than ever with technologically advanced adjustment tables. There’s no need to haul yourself onto the table anymore. Simply stand with your back against the table and it lays you down automatically. Adjustments for the chiropractor are simple as well, moving an arm or head up and down with air-cushioning mechanisms for the most comfortable experience. Some tables even have speakers embedded in the construction for soothing music during the visit.

Advanced Techniques

Technology is also advancing the basic chiropractor visit. Regardless of the available equipment, chiropractors must still adjust a person with their bare hands. Technology revealing new ideas and discoveries about the human body allows professionals to alter and enhance their adjustment practices. A slight change in adjustment angle, for example, could alleviate a pain that was otherwise a chronic issue. Technology brings education and experience together for happy patients.

Let your chiropractor take your body to more comfortable places with advanced tables and adjustment techniques. From basic soothing music to the newest body scanner, practices incorporating today’s technology are seeing better results and more loyal customers treated each day.

Mobile:

5 Industries That Need Mobile Readiness

Now that there are more people in developed countries using mobile devices compared to PC’s, some industries are scrambling for mobile readiness. It’s no longer and option, and thankfully some industries are prioritizing getting mobile in order to best serve their clients and customers. If you’re a business owner, you need to incorporate mobile into your overall responsive design plan immediately.

The good news is that, as a consumer, the experts you depend on might already be a step ahead of you. Whether you’re working with a Munich law firm or a lash technician who comes to you, check out some of the professionals who are on top of mobile readiness. They’ll make your life a lot easier.

1. Financial institutions

Most of the major ones have an app, and all are committed to making your mobile browsing experience a positive one. Security is key, of course, for financial institutions which means they feature the best protection. Thankfully you don’t have to wait for banks to catch up with a mobile ready world.

2. Lawyers

A great lawyer is at his client’s beck and call any time of day or night. This means making it easy to reach them (sometimes a phone call just isn’t possible). Easy to navigate sites that make connecting electronically fast and easy is a must. When time is of the essence, mobile readiness needs to be in check.

3. Restaurants

Owning a restaurant is a huge investment and risk, plus you have plenty of competition. People are searching for great food as cravings strike, and if a restaurant’s website isn’t mobile ready, customers will move on to the competition. A menu, contact information and hours that’s accessible is a requirement.

4. The hospitality industry

As more people are using smartphones to plan vacations, this means they’ll likely make a hotel choice based on convenience. Yes, star ratings and reviews are still important, but so is the ability to simply peruse room options and make a reservation on the go.

5. Service providers

Whether it’s a plumber, a masseur, a salon or an appliance inspector, don’t forget about the customer in customer service. Service providers also face a lot of competition, and many of them are freelancers or small business owners. Knowing your clients are using mobile devices to find and reach you means you need to deliver.

The reality is that every industry needs mobile readiness. However, some are facing more pressure than others.

 

4 Benefits of Going Into the Cloud

Cloud-computing-9-25-12b

Cloud technology can make your personal and professional life easier, better and more cost effective. Why haven’t more people fully embraced the cloud? There are still businesses using old school hard copies and filing cabinets, homeowners with paper documents spilling out of home offices, and a bunch of Americans who have embraced mobile readiness but are still wary of cloud tech. There are a lot of misconceptions that need to be addressed.

For every savvy business that’s gone paperless, there are countless more behind the times. Cloud technology is much more secure and safer than any traditional method the average businessperson or homeowner could achieve on their own. It’s not perfect, but neither is your old school filing system that’s vulnerable to natural disasters, burglars and fires. Here are the major benefits of cloud tech and why you should get on board today.

1. It’s eco-friendly

What’s eco-friendly about having multiple hard copies, tossing used ink cartridges instead of properly recycling them (which is admittedly a pain), or taking up a bunch of space and resources just to have papers sit and collect dust? Cloud tech is green.

2. It saves you money

It costs money to maintain a printer, buy paper and ink, pay the bills that keep the whole system running, and you’re paying for every square footage of space that filing cabinets are sitting on. How much you can save depends on how much you’re currently spending on printing costs.

3. It allows for flexibility

Why be chained to a physical location? With cloud tech, you and your employees can take care of 99 percent of business from anywhere in the world. You can control who has access to what files, what they can do with them (share, edit, just view, download, etc.) and suddenly a virtual environment is born. Offering telecommuting options is also known to improve employee happiness and productivity, as well as reel in the best new candidates.

4. It’s what peers and customers will come to expect

What happens when that big new client simply wants you to share, via the cloud, a contract? You’re going to look unprofessional when you have to say “you don’t do that.” Cloud tech is the future, and it’s happening now. Not getting on board will highlight ineptness.

There are many free cloud tech options that work well for the average person and small business. What’s your excuse?

 

More on TechVert