• HALFWAY BETWEEN PHYSICAL OFFICE & VIRTUAL OFFICE STRATEGIES, and increasing in popularity, are ‘Remote Worker’ programs. Beyond cost savings, this policy for some businesses serves to attract more high-caliber employees, optimize time zone productivity, and provide better work/life balance for employees. However, recruiting and managing Remote Workers adds challenges which often get overlooked, including: (1) It is not for everyone. A person “who isn’t a proactive communicator or needs constant social interaction to thrive can really struggle” with productivity performance; (2) Isolation and lack of in-office face time can contribute to “potentially negative feelings and/or loneliness, leading to higher anxiety around job security”; (3) Keeping projects on track when working across multiple time zones requires different approaches in order to manage team deliverables. Before you employ this strategy, let DCG share our experience of what best, or doesn’t, work. [FAST COMPANY – Aug 20, 18]
  • “EMAIL IS THE TOP ATTACK VECTOR IN SECURITY BREACHES which last year was the ‘main entry point’ for 96% of cases involving human error that led to a security incident, including 49% of malware installed.” The most common threats come from people not knowing or caring to do the right thing: (1) Opening a malicious link in response to some type of inquiry for information from an unknown source; (2) Opening a malicious attachment (such as an apparent invoice or bill) which affects the system with malware like ransomware or keylogging software; and (3) Business email Compromise, aka Whaling, by responding to an email where an attacker has impersonated a higher-level exec or manager to trick a transfer of money or sensitive data. Protecting against these tactics requires “a layered approach which mixes both technology and education” – like scanning, perimeter firewall protection, anti-spam software, and consistent training on latest threats “so employees can serve as the final line of defenses.” DCG partners can help optimize that Defense; call us for courtesy consultation. [SECURITY INTELLIGENCE.COM – Aug 16, 18]
  •  FACIAL RECOGNITION TECHNOLOGY HAS ENTERED THE WORKPLACE. A large I.T. company in India now takes attendance with a facial-recognition terminal which also doubles as a ‘moodometer’ – monitoring the moods of employees daily “to better understand how day-to-day performance & morale are impacted… The system can recognize & capture nine different facial expressions which are consolidated daily to report the mood of the workforce.” [THE ECONOMIC TIMES – Aug 7, 18]
  •  AND ANOTHER STEP FORWARD TOWARDS HUMAN OBSOLESCENCE as Artificial Intelligence steps into the ‘legitimate’ art world. Next month Christies, a major British auction house, is holding a sale for “limited-edition original prints along with a series of identical 3D artworks including art created by artificial intelligence.” The AI work was created using a French team algorithm and model involving a dataset of 15,000 portraits over seven centuries, from which “duplicate pieces were able to fool a test designed to distinguish whether an image was made by human or machine.” AI systems already compose music, write music and now create visual artworks, as computers negate the importance of right-brain creativity. [ARTNET NEWS – Aug 20, 18]
  •  A SHORTAGE OF UP TO 120,000 PHYSICIANS IS NOW FORECASTED WITHIN THE NEXT TWELVE YEARS, a 15% increase from just one year ago according to the Ass’n of Medical Colleges. The reasons that interest in becoming a doctor continues to wane include: (1) The huge cost of borrowing for years of schooling which does not ensure getting a residency or commensurate income; (2) The rise of higher-paying jobs and opportunity in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math); (3) “Desire among millennials to be in hip, urban locations – a luxury they definitely won’t get when fresh out of medical school”; (4) Dealing with the challenges and burdens dealing with Electronic Health Records and arguing issues with “nonmedical business or insurance middlemen without any medical training.” A world-class medical system is collapsing. [IMPACT LAB – Aug 22, 18]
  •  THE FEDERAL ‘SPECIAL PROSECUTOR’ RULES are unquestionably backward from ‘burden of proof’ rules embedded in all other American judiciary process. “All a Special Counsel needs, in order to charge a subject of an investigation with ‘lying’ and being jailed for ‘perjury’ – is a single witnesses willing to contradict the subject. The testimony of a ‘flipped witness,’ (who may not only be ‘singing’ but also ‘composing’ – making up or embellishing a story to obtain a better deal for himself) need not be corroborated in order to secure a conviction. Even one question that results in an answer that is simply contradicted by one witness would be enough to spring the perjury trap.” What a system. [Alan Dershowitz – GATESTONE INSTITUTE – Aug 20, 18]
  •  THOUGHTS FOR THE WEEK:  The 2008 U.S. financial bailout cost over $4½ trillion — more than the Marshall Plan, Louisiana Purchase, Race to the Moon, S&L bailout, Korean War, New Deal, Iraq War, Vietnam War, and NASA’s lifetime budget combined.

       After 16,000 feces-on-the-public-street complaints in one week last month, San Francisco now has six-member teams proactively disposing of “vagrant-generated feces… donning protective gear in a special vehicle equipped with a steam cleaner and disinfectant… Each member of the apparently elite Poop Patrol team will cost the city $185,000 in salary & benefits,” reports the SF Chronicle.