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Is a Better Mousetrap in your Future?

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Photo from Pixabay is licensed under CCO. This is a modified combination of two images, the originals can be found here Pixabay and here Pixabay

Have you ever had to agonize over the question – When is it time to build the “better mousetrap”? By better mousetrap, we mean creating the next generation of a product. Most would think this would be routine for technology-based companies, however, a study of 28 next-generation product-development projects at 14 leading high-tech companies, found most were unable to complete projects on schedule. 1 In addition, these companies had difficulties with the derivative products needed to fill the gaps in the market that their next-generation products will create.

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The Golden Age of Artificial Intelligence

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Photo from Pixabay is licensed under CCO

The definition of a golden age is a period in a field of endeavor when great tasks were accomplished.1 AI has already impacted speech processing, chatbots, virtual assistants, augmented reality and virtual reality.2 Great things are sure to come in the near future with AI and its associated technologies, along with additional responsibilities that accompany new technologies, like cyber-security and privacy issues.

Apple, Microsoft and Google are spending billions of research dollars to create next generations of digital personal assistants and AI Bots.3 A bot is a piece of software designed to automate a specific task. They are used mainly as web spiders or web crawlers that fetch script, analyze and file information at paces much faster than a human could do. They are becoming more and more natural and simple in their interactions making it hard to distinguish between a human and a bot. This results in an elevated user experience.

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The History and Facts behind Bluetooth

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Photo from Pixabay is licensed under CCO

Bluetooth has become a common buzz word in many industries. What is Bluetooth and how does it work? Bluetooth is a wireless technology standard for exchanging data over short distances from fixed and mobile devices and building personal area networks (PANs).1 One Bluetooth device can connect up to seven devices at a time.

To connect devices using Bluetooth technology each device must be compatible with the same profile. A profile is a specification regarding an aspect of Bluetooth-based communication between devices. There are several profiles available, but the most widely used are the Advanced Audio Distribution Profile, Hands Free Profile and Headset Profile. Advanced Audio Distribution profile (A2DP) defines how multimedia audio can be streamed from one device to another over a Bluetooth connection.2 The Headset profile (HSP) is the most commonly used profile, providing support for Bluetooth headsets to be connected with mobile phones. The Hands-Free profile (HFP) is generally used to allow mobile phones to communicate with vehicle hands-free kits.

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Why It Is Important to Keep the User Experience in Mind

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Photo from Pixabay is licensed under CCO

Photo from Pixabay is licensed under CC0

As technology continues to evolve through the years so do the number and diversity of the end user. Prior to 1980, most computing was done on main frames controlled by professional IT personnel.1 Today, almost anything can be done on a smart device in the hands of one to 100 year olds- including managers, students, accountants, home makers, engineers, teachers, scientists, health care workers, salesmen, etc. Each generation and skill level having their own specific set of needs that are diverse, complex and constantly changing.

When developing a software project it is crucial to tailor it to the needs of the end user as they will be using and benefiting from the product. If it is not developed to the requirements, wishes and specifications of the user, it will most likely fail.2 This can be a difficult task as the size and diversity of the targeted group of end users often vary. Continue Reading

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Bringing Intelligence to Your Home

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smart home

Photo from Pixabay is licensed under CC0.

More than two thirds of consumers plan to buy connected technology for their homes by 2019, and nearly half say the same for wearable technology. [1]

Not that long ago there was only the first-born of smart devices, the cellular phone. Today, smart products are emerging across many industries. Devices nowadays are not just simple electrical parts; they have evolved to be complex systems consisting of hardware, software, data storage, and connectivity. Today, you can run things in your house without even being there, your doctor can monitor your health without you being in the hospital, or you can even give treats to your pets when you are not at home. Devices have become not only connected, but intelligent. They obtain and analyze data available to them and adapt to usage patterns. By generating all the data, devices are able to act as a self-sustained system allowing the user to simply enjoy a hassle free experience. Continue Reading