Posted by & filed under App Economy, Cyber Security.

Ron Spreeuwenberg is CEO of HiMama, one of Canada’s fastest-growing companies.
Together with his business partner, Alana Frome, Spreeuwenberg runs HiMama, a Toronto-based tech company. Its software enables daycares to share photos and update parents on what their kids are doing during the day, as well as run their administration efficiently. It has more than a million users and is one of Canada’s fastest-growing companies. Last year, it raised $70 million and snapped up FunShine Express, an American maker of learning materials.

Source: Toronto Daily Star

Date: April 29th, 2022

Link: https://www.thestar.com/business/mars/2022/04/28/tech-and-toddlers-how-torontos-daycares-are-going-digital.html

Discussion

  1. “Every child in the daycare program is entered into the software and parents receive invitations to HiMama, which they can access through our app or website, where they receive updates about their child and can message the child’s caregiver. ” What are some of the cybersecurity issues around this?
  2. What other roles / uses could we put this software to?

Posted by & filed under Bitcoin.

Ndassima gold mine in CAR
The Central African Republic (CAR) has approved Bitcoin as legal tender – just the second country to do so.
CAR is one of the world’s poorest countries, but is rich in diamonds, gold and uranium.
It has been wracked by conflict for decades and is a close Russian ally, with mercenaries from the Wagner Group helping fight rebel forces.
Lawmakers voted unanimously to adopt Bitcoin as legal tender, said a statement from the CAR presidency.
The move puts CAR “on the map of the world’s boldest and most visionary countries”, it said.

Source: BBC News

Date: April 29th, 2022

Link: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-61248809

Discussion

  1. Computer scientist Sydney Tickaya said he thought the adoption of the cryptocurrency was “premature” and “irresponsible”. Why might this be the case?
  2. Why are some countries moving towards using bitcoin?

Posted by & filed under Career, Low-code.

Salesforce logo on Moscone Center

Salesforce is a big, complex set of services, which has been augmented via acquisition with several other big complex services, including MuleSoft, Tableau and Slack, three companies the CRM giant acquired in recent years.

The company has been looking for ways to make all of these tools (including Salesforce itself) work better together, and it thinks the answer is using its low-code workflow tool, Salesforce Flow. Today, it announced an update that is designed to build integrated workflows between whichever tools in the Salesforce family you happen to be using.

It’s a bold attempt to pull together all of the pieces in the Salesforce arsenal in a more coherent fashion, using a popular tool that has been around since 2019 to do the job.https://jac.yahoosandbox.com/1.1.0/safeframe.html

Salesforce co-founder and CTO Parker Harris says that when the company launched 23 years ago, it was all about humans entering data and interacting with machines, but over time, the machine has been able to take over some of the tasks, and that’s where Flow comes in.

“It was humans going into screens and entering information and reading it, and while that’s still very important, I think the world has shifted a lot where it’s now more about automation. It’s more the computer driving business, rather than humans trying to do it all on their own,” Harris explained.

Source: SalesForce

Date: April 29th, 2022

Link: https://techcrunch.com/2022/04/27/salesforces-low-code-workflow-tool-aims-to-unify-crm-giants-largest-acquisitions/

Discussion

  1. What is a “low-code” environment?
  2. Why is an MIS major very useful major when it comes to the “Low code environment”

Posted by & filed under Metaverse.

A virtual reality device created by Marion Surgical helps surgeons practise their skills on digital patients.
The pandemic exposed many weaknesses in Canada’s health-care system: We know too well about the overwhelmed hospitals and long-term-care homes; the exhausted workers and lives lost. Then there are the less obvious issues: non-existent domestic vaccine production, insufficient lab and manufacturing space for new drugs, labour shortages and a growing distrust in science. This hurts the long-term health of citizens and the economy — and if left unresolved, Canada can expect similar devastation when the next pandemic hits.
But Canada’s health-care system is more than a collection of clinics and hospitals. It’s a massive economic engine that is already working to solve these problems.
“Canada has the chance to be one of the world’s great stewards of innovative medicine and patient care,” says Rebecca Yu, an executive at Takeda, a biopharmaceutical company. “But the pandemic has taught us there’s a lot of work to be done — supporting our early-stage innovators and building essential manufacturing infrastructure is key to achieving this objective.”

Source: Toronto Daily Star

Date: April 22nd, 2022

Link: https://www.thestar.com/business/mars/2022/04/20/from-misinformation-to-the-metaverse-how-tech-is-reshaping-health-care.html

Discussion

  1. The article talks about “Activate your headsets: medicine enters the metaverse“. Is this a realistic use case for the metaverse?
  2. How could medicine and healthcare move into the metaverse?

Posted by & filed under Cyber Security, Ethical issues, Payment Technology.

A woman using a contactless payment microchip implant
Patrick Paumen causes a stir whenever he pays for something in a shop or restaurant.
This is because the 37-year-old doesn’t need to use a bank card or his mobile phone to pay. Instead, he simply places his left hand near the contactless card reader, and the payment goes through.
“The reactions I get from cashiers are priceless!” says Mr Paumen, a security guard from the Netherlands.
He is able to pay using his hand because back in 2019 he had a contactless payment microchip injected under his skin.

For many of us, the idea of having such a chip implanted in our body is an appalling one, but a 2021 survey of more than 4,000 people across the UK and the European Union found that 51% would consider it. However, without giving a percentage figure, the report added that “invasiveness and security issues remained a major concern” for respondents.

Source: BBC Business

Date: April 19th, 2022

Link: https://www.bbc.com/news/business-61008730

Discussion

  1. Why is it a good idea to have a contactless payment card embedded in your hand? And why not?
  2. What are some of the possible “invasiveness and security issues”?

Posted by & filed under AI/Artificial Intelligence, Future of Work.

Data-driven development
Most businesses today understand that automating business processes is not just about putting a few bits and bytes in the right places. However, past experiences with voice and chatbots have often left customers with a negative impression of what they are capable of. Business leaders often perceive conversational AI offerings as readily available, off the shelf solutions that can immediately transform any legacy environment into one that leverages AI to its full potential. In reality, in order for a system’s potential to be maximised, itrequires customisation and continuous development as a strong brand is not exclusively defined by a good product or particularly creative marketing, but also by excellent service. 
Automating customer experiences is only part of the story. In order to increase and deliver better value, in-house developers must be provided with usable data that is able to be analysed and assessed at speed. Having access to this data means developers are able to better identify customer pain points when interacting with their business. Likewise, better data management facilitates a streamlined environment, enabling businesses to allocate resources to the relevant areas and, above all, save on costs that might have been spent on less impactful tactical engagements.

Source: TechNative

Date: April 19th, 2022

Link: https://technative.io/leveraging-data-from-conversational-ai-interactions-to-improve-customer-experiences/

Discussion

  1. “This is where the role of the conversation designer becomes integral for success – and needs to be fully integrated into the business in order to achieve results. ” (emphasis added). “Conversation designer” is a new Future of Work role that did not exist before AI-interactive bots. What skills might it take to be a “conversation designer”?
  2. Why is data so important for the “conversation designer”?

Posted by & filed under Robotics.

If you meet the new robot at the University of Bristol, it can gently shake your hand.
That’s because researchers have designed an artificial fingertip with a sense of touch nearly as sensitive as our own.

“It’s giving the hand a feel, a sense of feedback about what the fingertips are touching,” robotics professor Nathan Lepora, who is part of the research team behind the technology, told As It Happens guest host Dave Seglins. 
“Just like with our hands, we need that feeling from our fingers, which most of the time we don’t even think about.”

Source: Canadian Broadcasting Company

Date: April 14th, 2022

Link: https://www.cbc.ca/radio/asithappens/as-it-happens-the-monday-edition-1.6415906/researchers-give-a-robot-hand-the-power-of-touch-designing-a-human-like-fingertip-1.6417499

Discussion

  1. “Assistive robots that could help people … who may be old or infirm … [or] need help to get around and need help around the home to give them more of an independent life.” Why is human-like touch (haptic) required for this sort of robot?
  2. What sort of business could you set up with this technology?

Posted by & filed under AI/Artificial Intelligence.

Introducing Soul Machines Human OS 2.0. The next generation of Digital People powered by Autonomous Animation are here.

Soul Machines is a New Zealand company looking to use AI to provide immediate video digital people which show emotions.

Source: Soul Machines (www.SoulMachines.com)

Date: April 11th, 2022

Link to 2 minute 22 second video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rjclQ3m5JRw

Discussion

  1. Why is an AI-powered digital person that shows emotions so important?
  2. What are some applications of an AI-powered digital person that shows emotions?

Posted by & filed under Digital Twin.

How do you grow food underwater? Nemo’s Garden is transforming the everyday by embracing digitalization and using Siemens Digital Industries Software to create underwater biospheres to help global food production. Are underwater farms the farms of the future?

Source: YouTube

Date: April 11th, 2022

Link to 5 minute 34 second video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-flwwKRDiHw

Discussion

  1. What sorts of “Digital Twins” make sense?
  2. What are some limitations of Digital Twins?

Posted by & filed under App Economy.

500+ Food Delivery Pictures | Download Free Images on Unsplash

TORONTO – Wesley Yue’s staff race against the clock every day.

When orders arrive through an app, “riders” at his grocery delivery company Ninja have just 10 minutes to round up items and get them to customers via e-bike.

“When I tell people about what we’re working on … they don’t really believe us,” said Ninja co-founder, Yue. “A lot of their first reasons to try us is that they want to test out the promise of 10 minutes and then they get blown away and stick with us forever.”

Ninja shifted last year from its roots as a Waterloo, Ont. robotic delivery company to a human-powered grocery courier with Alberta and B.C. expansion plans. It’s run by Uber, Tesla and Waymo alumni and debuted in Toronto and Waterloo, Ont. last summer, as 15-minute rival Tiggy launched in Toronto and Vancouver.

Source: Toronto Star

Date: April 8th, 2022

Link: https://www.thestar.com/business/2022/04/01/new-apps-offering-grocery-delivery-in-under-10-min-pin-their-hopes-on-power-of-habit.html

Discussion

  1. Does it make sense to have an app that requires humans to do the 10-minute-delivery part of the work?
  2. What are some technology and human issues with this app?