• “RANSOMWARE IS ESSENTIALLY A DIGITAL HOLDUP. Though your life is not in danger, you face the imminent threat of catastrophic consequences from the loss of irreplaceable data” when malware ‘freezes’ your computer and thieves demand a ransom (often in the form of bitcoin payment) for the encryption unlock code. If/when it happens, it only takes three seconds from clicking on a phishing email to complete takeover, although four of every five victims – more than 70% of which are targeted small businesses – “don’t know they’ve been hacked for weeks.” Ways to better protect yourself and your company: (1) Training for all employees on how to identify threats; (2) Putting critical data on separate network segments with internal firewalls or physical separation; (3) Having a robust Backup process in place.  DCG can help.   [BETANEWS.COM – Aug 26, 16]
  • THE POST-MILLENNIAL GENERATION BORN AFTER 2000 – known so far as Gen Z, Pluralists, or the Homeland Generation – will unquestionably be the most technologically adept in history, having been educated almost entirely through technology. Along with having been greatly sheltered by fashionable parenting styles, and “not having experienced or remembered the years of prosperity prior to the Great Recession, they will come of age accustomed to living with less and working with what they have,” their reactive values and behaviors will shape the workplace of the future with impacts most likely including: (1) self-direction with emphasis on unstructured time more so than overachievement; (2) less aggressiveness in expectations of advancement; (3) greater receptiveness to performance feedback; (4) more tolerance for existing company culture & policies; (5) more supportiveness of inclusivity and ‘fairness.’  [GENERATIONAL INTERCHANGES – Aug 31, 16]
  • THE OLYMPICS’ LOW AUDIENCE VIEWERSHIP (up to 25% decline in core age groups) was, to some degree, its own doing – result from a hard stand that “any use of trademarks on a non-official sponsor site would be viewed as commercial in nature and prohibited… even social media posts that are Olympic-themed, contain Games imagery or congratulate performance.” So even tweeting in hashtags like #Rio2016, #TeamUSA or #RoadtoRio were halted. One Minnesota company was appalled and has filed a federal lawsuit arguing “violation of 1st and 14th Amendments… that USOC’s actions, policies an threats have had the effect of chilling, silencing and censoring speech on social media…and fundamental Constitutional rights.” The pending decision could have a major impact on future Olympics and other sports events.  [MANATT ADVERTISING LAW – Sep 1, 16]
  • THE STEADILY INCREASING DISSONANCE OF VIEWPOINTS THESE DAYS creates turmoil for many interpersonal family, team and business relationships. “The internet, for all its power, has been creating virtual thought islands. Essentially, people can tailor their reading and information sources to fit their biases and rarely confront other viewpoints. And, when so confronted, people seem to be at a loss on how to hold a civil discussion on these differences or have the tools to understand positions that vary from their own… Especially so with ‘rationalists,’ for whom no amount of evidence can convince that their position is wrong – on the premise that since Truth comes from a (mind-derived) self-evident truth (and not from observation of the outside world), it would be unreasonable to refute such arguments by appeal to outside evidence.” [O’GRADY GEOPOLITICAL REPORT – Aug 15, 16] And in today’s political climate, it’s less and less worth bothering to try doing so. “The greater the ignorance, the greater the dogmatism.”
  • ELECTION STUFF: WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has offered financial reward to people “who can provide information” about either Party’s nominee, and plans to publish more information. While claiming impartiality, he so far has released only hacked emails impacting the DNC, and opined that “the American liberal press, in falling over themselves to defend Hillary Clinton, are erecting a demon that is going to put nooses around everyone’s necks as soon as she wins the election.”  [POLITICO.COM – Aug 31, 16]
  • THOUGHTS FOR THE WEEK: A $200 X-ray-vision device now magnetically clips to Android phones which “analyzes radio emissions and reflections from inside a wall… using 3D imaging to generate an image on the smartphone screen.”

        For magic trick lovers:  (1) a dorky but amazing rope trick: http://biggeekdad.com/2016/08/magical-rope-trick ; and (2) a truly brilliant card trick:  https://www.facebook.com/GoodVibesOnlyPage/videos/vb.459095997590285/605986852901198/?type=2&theater