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Enterprise Application News
May 22, 2019

Forrester: Bank mobile apps frustrating, confusing
Mobile banking should be effortless, with financial institutions sharing data, offering helpful suggestions and automating frequent tasks. But according to a new report from Forrester Research on mobile banking apps, far too many banks offer frustrating apps that show little thought given to how consumers interact with their financial institutions — or at least how they should.

"Banks too often send customers to separate apps or web pages to view content. These experiences, which are often inconsistent with the main app, can feel disjointed and confusing for the customer," said the report. "Menus disappear or compete with each other, names and icons have multiple meanings, or links take the customer out of the app without warning."

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 22, 2019

Apple tries again with MacBook Pro keyboard design
Dolly Parton described love as "like a butterfly", but this isn't precisely the emotion Mac users have reported on use of the butterfly keyboard design Apple puts inside its notebooks.

When keys take wing These keyboards have attracted much criticism since they were introduced, so much so that Apple has attempted to redesign them twice and is back with a fourth redesign in the newly-announced MacBook Pros.

In this latest edition the company says it has "changed the material" used in the butterfly mechanism. This should "substantially" reduce the issues that some users have experienced, Apple said.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 22, 2019

Given enough time and resources, it could be done
Consultant pilot fish is called to a community college to develop an online system for registering students in continuing ed classes. At the meeting to develop specifications for the project are fish, the IT director and the continuing ed director, who says that it's essential that people can't input invalid Social Security numbers. Fish and the IT director can't make any headway when they try to explain that there is no way to prevent that.

All right, then, says the continuing ed director, "If we cannot prevent that, I don't want the project."

End of meeting. And for fish, no regrets about that particular lost job.

Sharky doesn't need your PII, made up or otherwise. Just send me your true tales of IT life at sharky@computerworld.com. You can also subscribe to the Daily Shark Newsletter and read some great old tales in the Sharkives.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 22, 2019

Poorly designed systems make doctors 'a slave to their EHR'
FOXBORO, Mass. -- While electronic healthcare records (EHRs) vastly improved patient information collection and sharing for some healthcare providers and payers, the technology also robs doctors of something critical: the ability to properly care for patients.

EHRs continue to require far too many mouse clicks and pagination to enter data during a visit, diverting attention from patients - something that's key to not only creating a relationship but getting a complete picture of their health.

"Right now, it feels like physicians are a slave to their EHRs. There's a high amount of burnout - emotional burnout, depersonalization and a low sense of professional accomplishment," Dr. Alain Chaoui, president of the Massachusetts Medical Society, said during a presentation last week at the New England HIMSS Annual Spring Conference here.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 21, 2019

Windows 10 1903 arrives after stretch of extra testing
Microsoft today launched Windows 10 May 2019 Update, aka 1903, after running the feature upgrade through additional testing with Insider volunteers, hardware manufacturers and third-party software developers.

"The May 2019 Update is available for customers who would like to install the latest release," John Cable, director of program management in the Windows delivery and servicing team, announced in a post to a company blog.

[ Related: Windows 10 May 2019 Update: Key enterprise features ] Under normal circumstances, 1903 - the four-digit label in Microsoft's yymm format - would have gone public six or more weeks ago. But in early April, Microsoft said it would send the feature upgrade - the first of two presumably slated for the year - into more testing. The decision was an obvious reaction to the debacle of Windows 10 1809, which in October 2018 launched with a known-yet-still-overlooked bug that destroyed user data. Microsoft pulled 1809 and while the upgrade eventually debuted, albeit months late, in March the company gave up on getting the new version to users.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 21, 2019

Review: Windows 10 May 2019 Update unleashes a spring surprise
We've become used to the routine: Microsoft releases one of its twice-annual Windows 10 feature updates, often delayed due to bugs, and the world yawns. And throughout most of the six months of previews for Windows 10 version 1903, a.k.a. the May 2019 Update, it looked like it was going to be the usual routine again.

Except this time, it's different. About six weeks before the update's planned release, Microsoft made an unexpected late addition, one of the most meaningful features added to Windows 10 in a long time.

What is that feature, and what else is important is in this new update? Read on for details.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 21, 2019

Windows 10 Redstone: A guide to the Insider Preview builds
Microsoft never sleeps. Even before the Windows 10 May 2019 Update (version 1903) started to roll out, the company began working on upcoming feature updates to Windows 10. As it did with version 1903, Microsoft has been releasing a series of public preview builds to members of Microsoft's Windows Insider Program.

After years of using "Redstone" in its code names, Microsoft switched to a new format with the May 2019 Update. The new code names use a YYH1/YYH2 format, with the YY standing for the last two numbers of the year and H1 or H2 referring to the first or second half of the year. So Windows 10 version 1903, which was released in May 2019, was code-named "19H1" (for first half of 2019) rather than "Redstone 6." The next feature update, due in the fall of this year, is code-named "19H2," and the feature update that's coming in the spring of 2020 is code-named 20H1.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 21, 2019

Microsoft returns to Mac browser market after 16 years with 'Chromium-ed' Edge
Microsoft on Monday returned to the Mac browser market when it released the first public preview of its revamped Edge browser for macOS.

Delivery of the "Canary" edition for macOS came two weeks after prodigious Windows leaker WalkingCat, also known by his Twitter account @h0x0d, tweeted the download links for the Canary and more polished Dev builds of Edge for the Mac.

[ Further reading: Google's Chromium browser explained ] Like Google Chrome, Edge releases in multiple builds representing increasingly more stable versions of the browser. Canary, the least reliable, is updated daily, while the Dev version refreshes weekly. Beta and Stable builds appear every six weeks.

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Enterprise Application News
May 21, 2019

Revamped Google Glass 2 aims more powerful AR at the enterprise
Google this week updated its workplace-focused Glass augmented reality (AR) headset, offering a more powerful processor and improved camera - a "significant improvement" over its predecessor, according Anshel Sag, an analyst at Moor Insights & Strategy.

Google unveiled the consumer version of Glass in 2013 to much fanfare, but little commercial success. It was relaunched as Glass Enterprise Edition two years ago, after Google decided the headset was better suited to workers who need hands-free computing - such as in manufacturing, logistics and healthcare. Development was also moved to the X "moonshot" division within Google's parent company, Alphabet. 

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 21, 2019

Apple has a chance to build a social network we can trust
Apple has never quite managed to create a social network that works, but it seems to have a better chance than ever right now.

All the ingredients are there It has all the ingredients: A platform, loyal customers and a growing range of media services that would benefit from the kind of pester power social media provides.

Apple News , Apple TV , Apple Music (will Apple Music turn out to be the long-fabled high definition music service?), even Apple Arcade.

Apple's servers also hoard vast treasure troves of images and videos captured by iPhone users across the planet.

This is all shareable content that's kept tightly secured inside the company's walled garden, within which everything you do is kept as private as possible. (Subject to the privacy practises of your networks, governments and app developers).

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 21, 2019

Microsoft orphans Windows 10 1809, prepares to jump 1803 users straight to 1903
New data has again hammered home the point that Microsoft has given up forcing Windows 10 1809 on users.

The Redmond, Wash. developer essentially stopped pushing the October 2018 Update, aka 1809, to customers last month, according to numbers published by AdDuplex, a Lithuanian company whose metrics technology is embedded in thousands of Windows Store apps. Unlike previous Windows 10 feature upgrades, which all non-enterprise users had been required to install every six months, 1809 has been allowed to dawdle in distribution.

[ Related: Windows 10 May 2019 Update: Key enterprise features ] Windows 10 1809 powered only 29% of surveyed Windows 10 systems as of April 26, AdDuplex said. The increase from March to April was just 3 percentage points, barely half the increase from February to March and but a third that from January to February. Rather than increasing, as one would have expected from past feature upgrade roll-outs, 1809's adoption has slowed over time, a first for Windows 10.

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Enterprise Application News
May 21, 2019

What's the emergency?
Pilot fish works in a large control center, which has several emergency shutdown buttons, not just around the room but in the halls outside as well — just in case it ever becomes essential to turn off all the emergency power quickly. A moving crew comes along one day with some bulky equipment, and one fellow trying to walk down the hallway has to press against the wall so they can pass. And of course backs into one of the big red shutdown buttons. You can picture what happens: Everything goes down. It's not pretty.

It's things like this that explain why such buttons usually have plastic shields that have to be lifted up before you can push the button. That's certainly what they have now in that control center.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 20, 2019

How to block the Windows 10 May 2019 Update, version 1903, from installing
Surely you remember how the first release of Windows 10 version 1809 turned out — deleted files, panicked users, yanked upgrades that were unyanked and yanked again. Heaven knows that the release of Windows 10 version 1903 couldn't be any worse, but there's every reason to wait and see.

For almost everyone, the new features in version 1903, known to some as the May 2019 Update — Cortana banished, a few anemic phone extensions, newly spry response to a failed update — just aren't worth the bother of installing and setting up an entirely new copy of Windows. (Unless you really want Candy Crush Soda Saga installed for the umpteenth time.)

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 20, 2019

Interest in older iPhones declines
Recent speculation claims Apple may terminate support for some older iPhone models— including the popular iPhone SE — when it introduces iOS 13.

We won't know if this is true until WWDC, but it simply reflects consumer sentiment.

People are moving on The smartphone industry is declining as consumers try to get more use out of their mobile devices.

Manufacturers (including Apple) have responded by focusing on developing cutting-edge high-end devices that consumers are willing to purchase at higher cost.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 20, 2019

Interest in older iPhones is declining
Recent speculation claims Apple may terminate support for some older iPhone models -- including the popular SE -- in iOS 13.

We won't know if this is true until WWDC, but it simply reflects consumer sentiment.

People are moving on The smartphone industry is declining as consumers try to get more use out of their mobile devices.

Manufacturers (including Apple) have responded by focusing on developing cutting-edge high-end devices consumers are willing to purchase at higher cost.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 20, 2019

IDG Contributor Network: Lenovo Accelerate: The coming disruptive evolution/evolution of the laptop
 [Disclosure: Lenovo is a client of the author.]

I just came back from Lenovo Accelerate and I was reminded (again) that it's kind of amazing how long we've stuck with the clamshell-designed laptop. IBM introduced the concept back in the early 1990s and we're approaching 30 years where it's remained the dominant/default laptop design, overcoming challenges by smartphones and, most recently, tablets.

I think that's about to change…and no place was that more evident than at Lenovo Accelerate this year.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 20, 2019

Over the weekend Microsoft unleashed a flurry of Windows updates to fix the 'gov.uk' bug
Last Tuesday Microsoft released patches — Monthly Rollups, Security-only, or Cumulative Updates — for every version of Windows. Every single one of those patches included a bug that changed the way Internet Explorer and Edge handle secure connections for the top-level domain gov.uk.

Here's how Microsoft describes it:


To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 20, 2019

Memory-Lane Monday: We're monitoring that
Flashback to the 1990s, when this pilot fish is the lone network admin for his division of a big office support company.

"Since our division had its own building and was somewhat remote, we had a lot of autonomy," says fish. "I was able to pretty much have my data center and work spaces designed the way I wanted them — within budgetary guidelines, of course."

Then comes an office-space reshuffle, and fish's desk, workbench and lab are moved into a much smaller space.

But to make up for the newly cramped quarters, fish's boss gives him permission to design exactly how the new space will work.

Fish lays it out to put power and data connections in all the places he needs them, with a specially built workbench and even a large, extra-heavy-duty shelf designed to hold several huge monitors with pull-down keyboard trays.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 20, 2019

Google sees Gmail as key to its collaboration plans
As demand for team messaging apps continues to blossom, it may seem like email's days as the main business messaging tool are numbered. Google, however, sees the future of its team messaging tool, Hangouts Chat, as closely entwined with email.

The company laid outs its thinking at last month's Google Cloud Next with a focus on the integration of Hangouts Chat into Gmail, which allows users to jump into Chat without switching apps. 

The idea is that, like all software tools, real-time team chat has limitations as well as benefits. Ease of communication can lead to information overload, and quick-fire conversations can become distractions - the same problems still associated with email, issues team chat was supposed  to fix. 

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 18, 2019

Who's slowing down fast 5G?
Pop the champagne! The 5G revolution is here!

This new generation of cellular networking technologies promises to usher in a world of better-than-gigabit downloads on mobile devices and enable next-generation autonomous vehicles, remote telemedicine and high-speed IoT devices.

The devices are here! Verizon shipped its Samsung Galaxy S10 5G smartphone this week. Huawei, LG, Xiaomi and OnePlus have announced 5G smartphone handsets, as have many smaller Chinese handset makers. Snap-on smartphone attachments and "puck" mobile hotspot products are also becoming available.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 17, 2019

Google Docs cheat sheet
Google Docs is a powerful word processor that you use through your web browser. It's integrated with Google Drive to store your documents in the cloud. Anyone with a Google account can use it for free, and it's also available as part of G Suite — Google's subscription-based collection of online office apps for business and enterprise customers that includes Google Sheets, Slides, Gmail, Keep, and more. In addition to the web interface, there are Docs mobile apps for Android and iOS.

This quick guide will get you started with Google Docs and up to speed on how its features work, such as sharing your documents and collaborating on them with others.

To read this article in full, please click here

(Insider Story)

Enterprise Application News
May 17, 2019

Bury it with the mouse
Pilot fish doing desktop support at a hospital gets a call from the medical office building on campus asking that he come inspect a printer. At first he thinks they're telling him the printer has died, but then it becomes clear that something inside of it has died — and is filling the office with a truly foul smell.

"Not my job," or unprintable words to that effect, grumbles fish to himself as he walks across the street to the medical office building. His destination is easy to spot: All of the windows are open, and several box fans are drawing air out of the building.

At the door to this office (also open), fish encounters the hospital's HVAC manager, who was also called in and has already taken apart a window-mounted air conditioning unit in an effort to track down the source of the smell. When nothing turned up there, he went ahead and disassembled the laser printer, where he found a small mouse that had hidden inside the printer's cozy power supply — cozy, that is, until the mouse was electrocuted and basically exploded from both ends.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 16, 2019

Microsoft sets post-retirement patching record with Windows XP fix - 5 years after support ended
Microsoft on Wednesday resurrected Windows XP and Windows Server 2003 long enough to push patches to the long-dead products. It was the first time since 2017 that Microsoft deemed the situation serious enough to warrant a security fix for XP.

Windows XP fell off the public support list in April 2014, while Windows Server 2003 was removed in July 2015.

[ Related: Windows 7 to Windows 10 migration guide ] "If you are on an out-of-support version, the best way to address this vulnerability is to upgrade to the latest version of Windows," Simon Pope, director of incident response at the Microsoft Security Response Center, asserted in a post to a company blog. "Even so, we are making fixes available for these out-of-support versions of Windows."

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 16, 2019

The Pixel 3a could be Google's 'Moto G' moment
In the grand scheme of things, as an Android enthusiast, Google's Pixel 3a phone really doesn't seem all that electrifying.

And it's no wonder: The Pixel 3a, on its surface, is a lower-end remake of the premium Pixel 3 model that came out last fall. When we have devices showing up that are foldable, poppable, and packing more screens than a TV station's control room (for better or maybe for worse), a decidedly muted midrange model of a phone we already know seems downright mundane.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 16, 2019

Do Apple devices need anti-virus software?
Apple's devices are far better defended against malware and viruses than other platforms, but does this mean they don't need anti-virus software?

No, yes and maybe I've lost track of the number of times Mac users have told me Macs don't need virus protection because they are inherently more robust against such attacks.

I've also lost count of how many security researchers have said that Apple devices are becoming more liable to being attacked as their market share grows.

Both are right. Both are wrong.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 16, 2019

These are the top skill sets for a successful blockchain team
As undergraduates emerge from schools with software development or business skills, companies exploring blockchain use are seeking job candidates with four specific skill sets, according to a new report from consultancy KPMG.

Those skills are needed more with each passing month; KPMG expects an increase in the number of companies exploring blockchain this year for everything from identifying new business models to piloting projects and ultimately, progressing to scalable solutions.

KPMG said, not surprisingly, that it's seeking graduates with a solid grasp of blockchain at a high level - those who understand distributed ledgers, peer-to-peer topologies and consensus mechanisms; all are key for a technologist hoping to land a high-paying blockchain developer job.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 16, 2019

IDG Contributor Network: Critical updates to IE and Windows, make for an urgent May Patch Tuesday
I don't understand the reasoning behind Microsoft's rating of important for the RDS vulnerability. This vulnerability (CVE-2019-0863) should be a considered a zero-day security issue as it has been publicly disclosed and reported as exploited in the wild.

Even worse, the RDS security issue is a pre-authentication vulnerability, meaning as user does not have to be logged in to be vulnerable. Although creating a "wormable" attack is complex and requires significant skills, there are millions of RDP end-points published on the internet - expect a serious attack in the next few days.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 16, 2019

Throwback Thursday: Testing, testing, testing
Pilot fish and his team are called upon to investigate a large computer that's running slowly. The problem: users who are just abandoning their sessions on the big machine instead of quitting properly.

"We wrote a script that would detect the rogue sessions and kill them off," fish says. "Then we would report to the manager the names of the users who did not exit cleanly from the session, and the manager would have words with them."

That's the plan, anyway. Fish warns users that the script has been written and what it's for.

And it works. On the first day the script goes live, it catches a rogue session — which was left hanging by the manager.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 15, 2019

Apple invests in tomorrow's coding talent
While Apple CEO Tim Cook doesn't think a four-year degree is necessary to be a proficient coder, he's still prepared to invest in the nurturing next-generation engineering talent. Apple today opened up the application process for new students to join  its Developer Academy in Naples.

The Naples connection The Apple Developer Academy at the University of Federico II in Naples has opened up the application process for up to 400 new coding students.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 15, 2019

If you're running Windows XP, 7 or associated Servers, patch them
As of very early Wednesday morning, I don't hear any loud screams of pain from the May Patch Tuesday bumper crop of patches. There's still much we don't know about the "WannaCry-like" security hole in pre-Win8 versions of Windows — more about that in a moment — but all indications at this point lead me to believe that it's smarter to patch now and figure out how to fix any damage later.

The cause is a bug in Microsoft's Remote Desktop Services that can allow an attacker to take over your earlier-generation Windows PC if it's connected to the internet. Not all machines are vulnerable. But the number of exposed machines — the size of the honey jar — makes it likely that somebody will come up with a worm shortly.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 15, 2019

Lenovo launches enterprise AR/VR headset, the ‘ThinkReality A6'
Lenovo is the latest manufacturer to develop an augmented reality (AR) device aimed at enhancing productivity for enterprise workers, along with a software platform for app creation.

The ThinkReality A6 is a "heads-up, hands free" mobile visor that overlays 3D graphics onto real-world environments. The headset, reminiscent of Microsoft's HoloLens 2 device, has a 40-degree diagonal field of view, with 1080p resolution per eye. Launch date and pricing for the set-up, unveiled on Monday, has not yet been  announced.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 15, 2019

Financial firms bank on A.I. as pilot projects head to production
The financial services sector is pouring money into artificial intelligence (AI), with banks, for example, expected to spend $5.6 billion on AI in 2019 - second only to the retail sector.

Until now, the vast majority of AI projects have remained pilots, and in many cases those projects led to tech deployments without a clear business use.

Simply put, it's been trendy.

Most AI projects today are aimed at improving customer service efficiency and security by introducing chatbot technology, or by deploying machine-based learning to uncover trends across business lines in customer behavior and what they need.

[ Related: How AI is changing office suites ] "It's about ensuring banks are able to retain the memory of a customer's journey across bank services," said Sankar Narayanan, chief practice officer at Indian analytics service provider Fractal Analytics.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 15, 2019

Wayback Wednesday: Only good for PLANNED emergencies
This pilot fish works at a software company that has just added a group of student testers to the development team.

"One of the students lived near me and he didn't drive, so I started giving him a lift to work," fish says.

But one morning not long after the student starts work, fish has an emergency and can't go into the office. Fortunately, the student was able to get a ride from his parents that day. But to avoid future problems, fish asks a co-worker who lives nearby if he could serve as the student's emergency backup ride.

Fish: If I'm unable to make it one day, at short notice, would you be able to give the student a lift?

Co-worker: Yes, no problem.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 15, 2019

What happened to Windows 10 1909?
Microsoft's logo may not be Elmer Fudd in a red-and-brown cap, but the company has been vewy, vewy qwiet about the year's second Windows 10 feature upgrade.

That upgrade - designated, if Microsoft hews to practice, "Windows 10 October 2019 Update" and given the 1909 four-digit yymm nickname - has been tossed down a well, muffled by a pillow, shut up in a basement room. It may be there, but no one's heard from it.

[ Related: Windows 10 May 2019 Update: Key enterprise features ] In the past, Microsoft's twice-annual feature upgrades have shot for April and October releases (even though numerically named as if they'd made it out in March and September). As one feature upgrade neared release, Microsoft shifted the attention of its Insider participants - the volunteers who test previewed versions of the OS - to the next upgrade.

To read this article in full, please click here

(Insider Story)

Enterprise Application News
May 14, 2019

Financial services embraces AI | TECH(talk)
With artificial intelligence (and machine learning) showing up in numerous industries, it's no surprise they're now gaining traction in financial services. Coming soon to a banking chatbot near you....

Enterprise Application News
May 14, 2019

The real story with Android's new security update setup
It's easy to get lost in a sea of Google I/O information. After all, Google gave us tons of tasty nuggets to digest at its developers' conference last week — everything from a new midrange Pixel phone to a totally revamped (again) Android gesture interface — so when it comes to the more technical announcements, perhaps it's no surprise to see some of the finer points get a bit muddled.

I'm talking specifically about something called Project Mainline — a huge effort Google revealed that rethinks the very way security updates are handled across Android. It's without a doubt one of the biggest and most potentially impactful announcements to come out of I/O this year, but much of the coverage surrounding it has been incomplete or flat-out misleading.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 14, 2019

The iPhone user's guide to the WhatsApp hack attack
Hackers have used a security bug inside WhatsApp to install spyware through an infected WhatsApp voice call, and Apple users are affected.

What you need to do If you are one of the 1.5 billion people who use WhatsApp you should immediately update both your app and your iOS software to the latest version.

The app update includes fixes that should prevent hackers taking over your iPhone, while future Apple updates will also likely address these flaws.

What is the threat? Israeli hackers from a company called the NSO Group developed the spyware specifically so they could get into people's devices.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 14, 2019

Why Microsoft is building a Bitcoin-based ID verification system
After more than a year in development, Microsoft has chosen Bitcoin as the blockchain platform for a decentralized identification (DID) verification system that will allow users to have secure access to an online persona via an encrypted database hub.

The implications of the new ID network could include the elimination of passwords. A company would be able to verify the background of a new employee and onboard them with the click of a single virtual button, or a banking customer could verify their identity for a loan without exposing personally identifiable information - again with a click of a button.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 14, 2019

Business laptop? $1,000. Sending away the thief? Priceless.
The time is 2001, not long after 9/11, and the place is New York City. Heightened security awareness is the order of the day, and everyone in pilot fish's office is required to carry an access card that activates the office doors. Look out for tailgaters, they're all told. Those are people dressed like professionals who slide in behind someone with an access card and then steal wallets, coats and more.

One morning, fish arrives at the office and passes a man in business-casual attire carrying a laptop tucked under his arm and headed for the elevators. Fish doesn't recognize the fellow, but he does know the co-worker who is running behind him, calling for someone to call building security and the police. The co-worker had returned to an empty desk just seconds after this tailgater had snatched his laptop, well before the tailgater could make a clean getaway.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 13, 2019

Enterprise Ethereum upgrades to boost interoperability, performance
The Enterprise Ethereum Alliance (EEA) today announced new and updated specifications aimed at helping developers create business-class blockchain networks that are faster, easier to use and capable of interacting with other distributed ledger networks.

The specifications include a brand-new set of APIs for moving compute functions off of Ethereum blockchains (known as off chain) to reduce computational loads and improve primary network performance.

[ Further reading: What is FinTech (and how has it evolved)? ] The new APIs are intended to help blockchain programmers build in the privacy, low latency, and throughput needed for enterprise use cases in Fintech, supply chain, IoT and other business applications.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 13, 2019

Digital transformation: Why every enterprise needs to think about UI
You can throw all the money and technology you want at enabling the digital transformation of any form of enterprise, but if your end users are uncomfortable with your brand-new solutions, they will simply stop using them.

Put the customer first These are just some of the thoughts shared with me by Sam Johnson, Chief Customer Officer at Jamf, following that company's move to introduce its, Jamf School MDM (Mobile Device Management) solution for educators.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 13, 2019

Patches are coming tomorrow. Make sure Windows Update gets locked down.
This month should bring some interesting new developments on the Windows Update front. Microsoft is committed to shipping the new version of Win10, officially called the Windows 10 March Delayed to May 2019 Update, but better known to its friends as version 1903, later this month. It's still in beta testing at this point.

As prelude to that momentous occasion, we've been promised a simple mechanism to block the rollout, known as "Download and install." We've only seen "Download and install" once, and in a confusing way. Microsoft has to push the means to block 1903 at some point, if it hasn't already. I expect that we'll learn more tomorrow for Patch Tuesday.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 13, 2019

Mozilla apologizes for Firefox add-on breakdown
Mozilla has apologized for the fiasco earlier this month when an expired certificate disabled most users' Firefox add-ons.

"We strive to make Firefox a great experience. Last weekend we failed, and we're sorry," Joe Hildebrand, the recently named head of Firefox engineering, wrote in a post to a company blog. "We let you down and what happened might have shaken your confidence in us a bit, but we hope that you'll give us a chance to earn it back," Hildebrand concluded.

[ Related: Get serious about privacy with the Epic, Brave and Tor browsers ] The gaffe began just after 9 p.m. ET on Friday, May 3, when a certificate used to digitally sign Firefox extensions expired. Because Mozilla had neglected to renew the certificate, Firefox assumed add-ons could not be trusted - that they were potentially malicious - and disabled any already installed. Add-ons could not be added to the browser for the same reason.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 13, 2019

If that's true, I should investigate some more
It's back in the day and pilot fish is working tech support when he gets a call that a dumb terminal used for data entry is acting up. After taking a look, fish decides it needs replacing, so he unplugs it and puts it on a nearby desk so he can set up a new one.

When he leaves, he forgets all about the dead terminal. A couple of weeks later, he gets a call that another terminal in the same area isn't working. And sure enough, it's that dead terminal, sitting on a desk, not plugged in to either power or network, that the user is complaining about.

Somehow fish manages not to do an eye roll when the user tells him, "I don't know what happened. It was working fine yesterday."

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 10, 2019

Great R packages for data import, wrangling and visualization
One of the great things about R is the thousands of packages users have written to solve specific problems in various disciplines -- analyzing everything from weather or financial data to the human genome -- not to mention analyzing computer security-breach data.

[ Need to learn R or brush up on basics? Download our free Beginner's Guide to R or the Advanced Beginner's Guide to R ] Some tasks are common to almost all users, though, regardless of subject area: data import, data wrangling and data visualization. The table below show my favorite go-to packages for one of these three tasks (plus a few miscellaneous ones tossed in). The package names in the table are clickable if you want more information. To find out more about a package once you've installed it, type help(package = "packagename") in your R console (of course substituting the actual package name ).

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 10, 2019

Coming to Windows 10: More browsers, not fewer
Microsoft will continue to include Internet Explorer 11 (IE11) and the original Edge with Windows 10, according to a company program manager.

In a video recorded for this week's Microsoft Build conference, Fred Pullen, a principal program manager on the Edge team, filled in some of the blanks about the "IE mode" to be inserted inside the under-construction Edge based on Chromium. (Chromium is the open-source project whose technologies already power Google Chrome and other browsers.)

[ Related: Windows 10 May 2019 Update: Key enterprise features ] Details of how enterprises will manage "full-Chromium" Edge and its IE mode have been scant thus far. When Microsoft announced IE mode earlier this week, it said only that it would share "more details on deploying and managing Microsoft Edge later this year."

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 10, 2019

Is Apple really about to kill the iPhone SE?
Apple may dramatically reduce the number of supported older iPhone models when it introduces iOS 13, a the latest rumor claims, but it isn't yet clear on what consistent basis this decision may (or may not) be made.

Closing the stable door Apple really did the right thing when it extended backward compatibility in iOS 12, which worked merrily on models as old as the 2013 iPhone 5s and original iPad air.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 10, 2019

Wrongle dongle
Pilot fish is doing over-the-phone technical support for a big computer maker and fields a call from an elderly gentleman who can't log into his PC. Nothing they try is working, so fish has the fellow attach a wired keyboard instead of the wireless one he's been using. It works, so the problem's source has been narrowed down.

But the man and his wife really prefer their wireless keyboard and mouse, so fish stays on the line to help them troubleshoot. Wireless USB dongle is in the USB port? Check. OK, try changing USB ports. No help. User says he still has an older wireless keyboard and mouse; should he try them? Absolutely, says fish. But that doesn't work either.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 09, 2019

No, Google, Apple's privacy is not a luxury item
Why is privacy a luxury? Possibly because surveillance capitalist firms have subsidized product prices by collecting and trading in the personal data of the people that use their products, enabling them to sell hardware cheap.

The consequences of convenience The crux of Google CEO Sundar Pichai's argument against firms such as (obviously including but never named) Apple is that his company offers convenience in exchange for personal secrets, makes its services available for free, and has a "profound commitment" to protecting user privacy.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 09, 2019

Android Q gestures: The good, the bad, and the baffling
Every time we think we know all there is to know about Android Q, something new comes along and shakes up our understanding of Google's latest Android version.

The first Android Q beta brought us relatively subtle changes to areas like notifications, navigation, and power management — along with quietly important improvements to less visible areas like privacy, security, and performance. Then the second Q beta introduced Bubbles, a whole new approach to mobile multitasking that makes its debut with this release.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 09, 2019

Throwback Thursday: But thanks for asking
This IT department tries to keep lines of communication open with users, it really does. But it doesn't always work, says a pilot fish on the scene.

"Communications with our regional offices are strained due to differences in culture, office standards and level of technical expertise," fish says. "Frequently our specific questions are answered with less than helpful answers.

"For example: ‘Do the solution options we outlined for you make sense? If so, we'd like to have you choose the one that makes the most sense for you so we can implement it Thursday. Please let us know right away.'

"Their answer: ‘Thank you.'

"My personal favorite, though, was when we asked, ‘How many backup tapes do you currently have in your office?'

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 08, 2019

Review: 4 wireless chargers for both smartphone and watch (one of which does earbuds, too)
While there may be more than a dozen multi-device wireless chargers technically available now, most do not charge both smart watches and smartphones - and most of the companies who make them could not actually provide units for review since they're bring offered through crowdfunding projects.

As a result, we're limiting this review to multi-device chargers from three stalwart companies and a start-up that promptly shipped over a review unit.

[ Further reading: Wireless charging explained: What is it and how does it work? ] Zens Dual Watch Fast Wireless Charger Dutch electronics vendor Zens recently released a wireless charger that can do what Apple had hoped to do with its AirPower charger before it killed the project.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 08, 2019

Edge for Mac leaks; Beta build for Windows 10 quickly follows
Mac versions of Microsoft's Edge browser leaked this week, as did the first Beta build for Windows 10.

Microsoft has yet to officially launch any version of its reworked browser other than Canary and Dev for Windows 10, which went public a month ago.

[ Further reading: Google's Chromium browser explained ] Frequent Windows leaker WalkingCat, also known by his Twitter account @h0x0d, tweeted the download links for the Canary and Dev builds of Edge on macOS on May 6. A day later, @ADeltaForce revealed the download location for the Windows 10's Beta.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 08, 2019

New Cortana and Google Assistant updates highlight workplace potential
Microsoft and Google laid out their respective visions for the next generation of virtual assistants this week, with enhancements to Cortana and Assistant, respectively, designed to support workplace productivity.

Though voice assistants have yet to arrive in force in the workplace, analysts see plenty of potential. By 2021, 25% of digital workers are expected to use a virtual assistant on a daily basis, according to analyst firm Garner, up from 2% who do so now.

[ Related: How AI is changing office suites ] On Monday at its Build developer conference, Microsoft offered a glimpse of where Cortana is headed, with plans for the virtual assistant to support more fluid, back-and-forth conversations.    

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 08, 2019

3 burning questions about Google's Pixel 3a
After years of rumors, anticipation, and speculation — and maybe the occasional related libation — Google's midrange Pixel is finally a reality.

Google announced the Pixel 3a, as it's now officially known, at its I/O developers' conference this week. The device looks like the regular Pixel, acts like the regular Pixel, and even shares the regular Pixel's exceptional camera — all the way down to its wildly impressive Night Sight low-light capability. It comes with the same guarantee of three full years of timely and reliable OS and security updates, too, which is something no other Android phone even comes close to matching.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 08, 2019

The SAP/Apple partnership changes everything
SAP and Apple are working together to help businesses build applications that use Apple's machine learning and augmented reality technologies.

Apple is the enterprise Apple CEO Tim Cook joined SAP CEO Bill McDermott at the latter company's SAPPHIRE conference to announce the news.

"A man who is the last to accept the status quo, and the first to change it," said McDermott introducing Cook.

Since entering into a business app development partnership with Apple in 2016, SAP itself has become an increasingly Apple-based business with around 100,000 Apple devices in use across the company.

That's a revealing statistic, given Cook's admission:

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 08, 2019

IDG Contributor Network: Microsoft mixed reality: From a proof of concept to a real enterprise class offering
[Disclosure: Microsoft is a client of the author]

One of the leading technologies from Microsoft is HoloLens, now in its second iteration. Microsoft recognized early on that the way to bring AR to market (at least initially) was to:

Create the strongest solution technology would allow Target it at research and business opportunities that would pay for it Avoid the typical mistake of bringing out a consumer-focused product like Google Glass that was both too expensive for that audience and unable to meet their expectations. I'm really not a fan of bringing out products at any price that aren't adequate at any price…yet that's often how these new technologies come to market.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 08, 2019

IDG Contributor Network: Microsoft mixed reality: From a proof of concept to a real enterprise-class offering
[Disclosure: Microsoft is a client of the author]

One of the leading technologies from Microsoft is HoloLens, now in its second iteration. Microsoft recognized early on that the way to bring AR to market (at least initially) was to:

Create the strongest solution technology would allow Target it at research and business opportunities that would pay for it Avoid the typical mistake of bringing out a consumer-focused product like Google Glass that was both too expensive for that audience and unable to meet their expectations. I'm really not a fan of bringing out products at any price that aren't adequate at any price…yet that's often how these new technologies come to market.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 08, 2019

Take cover, it's a student programmer!
It's 1970 and pilot fish is a college junior taking courses in computer programming. And technology is progressing, as technology does. The school has just upgraded from an IBM 360/40 mainframe to a much more powerful IBM 360/65. It orders it with an entire megabyte of magnetic core memory, which adds about $1 million to its cost, and several disk drives in addition to the usual tape drives.

The disk drives and the new timesharing operating system make it possible to set up a self-service method for submitting students' programs, replacing the old once-per-day batch method. The staff place a high-speed card reader just behind a Dutch door so students can run their decks of punched cards themselves whenever the top half of the door is open. To run their decks, students pull a reusable, color-coded header card (green is for student priority) from a tabletop rack in the hallway, make it the first card of their deck, place the deck in the card reader's input tray, and press the green start button. As the reader reads the cards at high speed, it shoots them up against a metal bracket from which they fall gently into place and line up neatly in the output tray. Once the process is done, students remove their decks and put the borrowed header card back in its bin. It's a big improvement, with printouts available within hours instead of days.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 08, 2019

5 IFTTT alternatives worth trying
Millions of individuals and business users have come to love and depend upon IFTTT and all the cool "codeless automations" it makes possible between disparate web-based apps and services. But recently, the workflow automation platform lost many of its Gmail integrations. IFTTT said the reason is because Google made changes to its API ecosystem that disabled all Gmail triggers and the "create a draft action" on IFTTT.

To read this article in full, please click here

(Insider Story)

Enterprise Application News
May 07, 2019

Microsoft will demote IE to a 'mode' inside Edge
Microsoft yesterday stuck a knife in Internet Explorer (IE) when it announced that the 23-year-old browser would appear as a "mode" within Edge in its new "full-Chromium" incarnation.

While the Redmond company did not publish a death notice for IE or even admit to browser-cide, as sure as Law & Order's churning cast yanked criminals off streets, IE's days as a stand-alone browser are numbered.

"The new Internet Explorer mode ... seamlessly render[s] legacy IE-only content in high fidelity inside of Microsoft Edge, without the need to open a separate browser or for the user to change any settings manually," Kyle Pflug, a senior program manager lead who heads the developer ecosystem team, asserted in a post to a company blog. "Microsoft Edge uses your existing Enterprise Mode Site List to identify sites which require IE rendering and simply switches to Internet Explorer mode behind the scenes."

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 07, 2019

From coffee bean to cup: Starbucks brews a blockchain-based supply chain with Microsoft
Starbucks is working with Microsoft to develop a blockchain-based supply chain tracking system and mobile app that will allow customers to track the supply chain journey of the beans they buy and the coffee they drink.

In March, Starbucks announced a "digital transparency plan" that would let it verify their coffee beans as 100% ethically and sustainably sourced.

Last year, Starbucks worked with more than 380,000 coffee farms to ensure ethical sourcing. However, digital real-time traceability will allow customers to know more about their coffee beans, the company said.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 07, 2019

Hey Siri, what's the future of enterprise voice services?
Apple's focus on privacy is incredibly important when it comes to the development of Siri and voice services, as the potential goes way beyond asking your Apple Watch to turn off your lights.

Silent whisper If you use HomePod you'll already know that Siri will respond to commands only slightly louder than a whisper.

You can use it to carry out tasks, control home automation equipment, media playback controls, to answer questions and more. Apple's AI teams are constantly developing ways to get Siri to do more.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 07, 2019

Hey, Siri, what's the future of enterprise voice services?
Apple's focus on privacy is incredibly important when it comes to the development of Siri and voice services, as the potential goes way beyond asking your Apple Watch to turn off your lights.

Silent whisper If you use HomePod you'll already know that Siri will respond to commands only slightly louder than a whisper.

You can use it to carry out tasks, control home automation equipment, media playback controls, to answer questions and more. Apple's AI teams are constantly developing ways to get Siri to do more.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 07, 2019

Salesforce exec: Some clients just want blockchain for one purpose
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. - More and more Salesforce clients are experimenting with blockchain technology, but in most cases they wind up stuck in a proof of concept, unable to move into production, according to Salesforce's Senior Vice President of Emerging Technology, Adam Caplan.

"We haven't seen a lot of successful wins," Caplan said during a talk on blockchain's role in the enterprise during MIT Technology Review's Business of Blockchain conference here last week. "Part of the reason...is talent. Fifty-five percent find the challenge is finding the right, skilled workers. But also relevant is the technology is hard to work with."

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 07, 2019

Time-Machine Tuesday: It's all in how you ask
This entire organization is moving to a new building — a really new building, says a pilot fish making the move.

"The offices in the new building would have built-in furniture, and someone was assigned to work with us on customized furniture plans for each office," says fish.

His own desk in the old office has a stand that lets him adjust the keyboard for both height and tilt. But he can't take that stand to the new building, so to make sure his new setup has similar flexibility, fish talks to the furniture planner.

She tells fish that the new offices will be equipped with keyboard drawers under the desks.

That won't work for me, fish tells her; he knows from experience that a drawer will be at the wrong height for him, and its frame will get in the way of his wrists while he's typing. Does the catalog list any other keyboard supports with better adjustments?

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 06, 2019

Mozilla issues fix after it lets cert expire and Firefox add-ons go belly-up
Mozilla over the weekend scrambled to come up with a fix for a bug that crippled most Firefox add-ons.

Engineers issued an update for the desktop browser Sunday afternoon that addressed the issue. That update followed a Saturday hotfix released via a little-known component that lets Mozilla feed pre-release code to Firefox users and then collect data from the browser.

[ Further reading: 14 must-have Firefox add-ons ] The problem was traced to the certificate used by Mozilla to digitally sign Firefox extensions. When the organization neglected to renew the certificate, Firefox assumed the add-ons could not be trusted - that they were, in other words, illegitimate at best, potentially malicious at worst - and then disabled any already installed. Add-ons could not be added to the browser for the same reason.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 06, 2019

Windows 10: A guide to the updates
The launch of a big Windows 10 update like the October 2018 Update isn't the end of a process — it's really just the beginning. As soon as a major update is released, Microsoft quickly gets to work on improving it by fixing bugs, releasing security patches, and occasionally adding new features.

Here we've summarized what you need to know about every Windows 10 update being released to the public. First come updates to the currently shipping version of Windows 10 — version 1809, known as the October 2018 Update — with the most recent updates on top. (Note that the October 2018 Update is on a phased rollout, so you may not have received it yet.) Below that are updates to version 1803, known as the April 2018 Update; 1709, known as the Fall Creators Update; and finally updates to version 1703, known as the Creators Update. For each build, we've included the date of its initial release and a link to Microsoft's announcement about it.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 06, 2019

WWDC: iOS 13 brings iPad productivity, Watch independence and more
With just weeks to go until WWDC 2019, initial claims concerning Apple's iOS upgrade plans are becoming a torrent: faster, with more apps and key enhancements appear to be the order of the day.

What to expect from iOS 13 Apple intends releasing a bundle of its own new apps at the show and plans to sweeten the pill of it becoming a competitor for some developers with all new APIs developers can use with which to build fresh apps, a Bloomberg report claims.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 06, 2019

New Win10 1809 'Download and install now' — for cumulative updates, too?
From my point of view, the new Win10 version 1903 — which is still baking in the beta Release Preview ring — has the potential to become the first "must have" version of Windows 10. It all hinges on one new feature, "Download and install now," which brings back the ability to control updating almost as well as we could in Windows 7.

Or maybe not.

Taken at face value, "Download and install now" (screenshot) should give every Win10 1903 customer — Home or Pro — the ability to block updates until the customer decides they're good and ready to be installed.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 06, 2019

New Win10 1903 'Download and install now' — for cumulative updates, too?
From my point of view, the new Win10 version 1903 — which is still baking in the beta Release Preview ring — has the potential to become the first "must have" version of Windows 10. It all hinges on one new feature, "Download and install now," which brings back the ability to control updating almost as well as we could in Windows 7.

Or maybe not.

Taken at face value, "Download and install now" (screenshot) should give every Win10 1903 customer — Home or Pro — the ability to block updates until the customer decides they're good and ready to be installed.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 06, 2019

Shopaholic
It's many years ago and pilot fish is working at a smallish consulting firm with informal purchasing procedures: Someone just goes to the local computer store and buys any needed equipment or software. There's one employee who always seems to jump at the chance to do it, and fish wonders why, other than the chance to get out of the office for a while.

So he asks, and he gets an honest answer: It pays. The eager shopper gets cash back when he uses his credit card, and all those office purchases are adding nicely to his monthly rebates. It works well for him because the company is reimbursing him before he gets his monthly statement.

And it works for a long time, but eventually the company gives him a corporate credit card for making any office purchases.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 06, 2019

Microsoft surrenders in its Windows Update war with users
Most businesses know that a war with the people who buy and use their products is a war they can't win. Microsoft has belatedly recognized this with regard to its Windows Update policies. And if you've been paying attention to shifts in the corporate culture in Redmond, the company's surrender to its customers shouldn't be a surprise.

The long-simmering war has to do with the way that Windows 10 updates itself on PCs — specifically, the twice-a-year significant updates called "feature updates" that add new capabilities to Windows. For years, you've had, for all practical purposes, no choice about whether to update; your PC installed all updates automatically whether you liked it or not. (Technically, you could get around this, but it wasn't an option most users would choose; more on that in a bit.)

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 06, 2019

FCC eyes blockchain to track, monitor growing wireless spectrums
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. - The need for new Wi-Fi spectrums is expected to grow as infrastructure becomes increasingly more connected through IoT sensors, leaving U.S. government agencies in need of a database that can dynamically record and monitor their use.

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) wants a spectrum track-and-trace technology to be open-source, distributed and secure, so not surprisingly, it has been to explore the use of blockchain ledgers.

[ Free download: Mobile management vendors compared ] "If you think about a world of the Internet of Things with 50 billion devices and wireless functionalities and input to all of them, we should figure out how we can have a real-time market for those spectrum inputs instead of this clunky system we have today with these exclusive-use licenses," FCC Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel told attendees of MIT's The Business of Blockchain conference here last week.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 03, 2019

Microsoft touts its first managed blockchain service: JPMorgan's Quorum
Microsoft today announced its first Azure-based, managed blockchain platform using JPM's Quorum enterprise-class distributed ledger technology.

Since 2015, Microsoft's Azure cloud service has allowed users to install a number of blockchain platforms, including Enterprise Ethereum, Hyperledger Fabric, R3 Corda, and Quorum. That service only offered provisioning and setup. Now, however, Microsoft will handle not only the installation of the Quorum permissioned platform but software patches and updates, a full suite of application development tools as well as a template to govern the ledger, such as who can join a Quorum blockchain.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 03, 2019

Now's the time to install the April Windows and Office patches
April was a tough month for Win 7, 8.1, Server 2008 R2, 2012 and 2012 R2 customers who ran specific antivirus products. Blue screens, freezes, slow-as-sludge drippings all bedeviled a large number of Sophos, Avira, Avast, AVG and even McAfee users.

Looks like we're over that hump, with the AV manufacturers scurrying to fix their wares.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 03, 2019

How to use Hey Siri to use Google Assistant on iPhone
The best way to compare accuracy between Siri and Google Assistant is to use both on one device, and you can do that with your iPhone.

What is OK Google? "OK Google" is the Google Assistant equivalent of "Hey Siri", you use it to activate the intelligent assistant in order to get answers to your queries.

The iOS version of Google Assistant was recently updated with the addition of support for Siri Shortcuts, which means you can now create a Siri Shortcut that lets you get help from the Assistant using Siri.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 03, 2019

How to use 'Hey, Siri' to control Google Assistant on iPhone
The best way to compare accuracy between Siri and Google Assistant is to use both on one device, and you can do that with your iPhone.

What is OK, Google? "OK, Google" is the Google Assistant equivalent of "Hey, Siri"— you use it to activate the intelligent assistant in order to get answers to your queries.

The iOS version of Google Assistant was recently updated with the addition of support for Siri Shortcuts, which means you can now create a Siri Shortcut that lets you get help from the Assistant using Siri.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 03, 2019

Facebook's Workplace gets updated UI, more emphasis on chat and groups
Along with an update to its core consumer offering at its F8 developer conference this week, Facebook announced a redesigned interface for its Workplace enterprise social network. One analyst described the new look as "less cluttered, faster [and] easier to navigate," with a greater focus on Workplace's chat and group elements.

Among the changes to the streamlined UI is the ability to jump between Workplace's Notifications, groups and Workplace Chat features more quickly, with shortcuts placed on a left-hand navigation bar. 

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 03, 2019

Maybe a paperweight next time?
It's the late '80s and pilot fish is a junior programmer working on terminal emulation software for PCs to access various mainframe systems. He periodically ships out updates to customers on 5.25-inch floppy disks.

A few days after the latest update, Fish receives a call from a customer who says the floppy disk she received appears to be blank.

Not a problem, Fish says, I'll overnight a new copy. But after few days pass, the customer calls to say that this disk is blank as well.

Puzzled, fish talks the situation over with his manager, who tells him to hand-deliver two copies of the software. Fish books a flight, hotel and rental car, then heads to the airport as soon as he can throw a few things into a bag at home.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 03, 2019

Windows by the numbers: Maybe Windows 7 doesn't want to retire
Windows 7 will remain a widely-used OS for at least the next half-decade if its predecessor Windows XP serves as even a crude yardstick.

Five years ago last month, Microsoft moved Windows XP onto its do-not-support list. The company retired the well-worn operating system on April 8, 2014. Yet even now, 60 months after the milestone, more than 40 million PCs worldwide rely on the now-ancient software.

Windows XP's post-retirement trajectory can be instructive when forecasting what may happen to Windows 7 when it falls off the support list in eight months, on Jan. 14, 2020.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 02, 2019

Android apps: Best of the best
Trying to find the right app for any given area on Android is a lot like trying to order dinner at a restaurant with way too many options on the menu. How can you possibly find the right choice in such a crowded lineup? With the Google Play Store now boasting somewhere in the neighborhood of 70 gazillion titles (last I checked), it's no simple task to figure out which apps rise above the rest and provide the best possible experiences.

That's why I decided to step in and help. I've been covering Android from the start and have seen more than my fair share of incredible and not so incredible apps. From interface design to practical value, I know what to look for and how to separate the ordinary from the extraordinary. And taking the time to truly explore the full menu of options and find the cream of the crop is quite literally my job.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 02, 2019

The 3 big asterisks everyone's missing about Pixel sales
Oh-em-gee, you guys (and gals and non-gender-conforming readers who prefer to be called neither guys nor gals but are equally welcomed and appreciated): Didja hear?! Google's Pixel sales are, like, totally tanking. The company's entire self-made smartphone program is probably gonna be outright cancelled any second now — because it is just struggling and flailing and several other overly dramatic verbs.

That's the narrative that seems to be building up 'round these here nets of inter at the moment, anyhow — but you know what? While it is based on a nugget of reality, it's relying on an awful lot of wild conclusion-jumping. And it's ignoring some pretty significant parts of the bigger smartphone picture.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 02, 2019

Why I now hate my Apple Watch slightly less
In last week's column about the Apple Watch, I listed a variety of watch attributes that drove me crazy, especially after repeated calls to Apple technical support indicated there was nothing that could be done to fix the issues. Google searches also revealed no fixes.

But after the column ran, quite a few Apple fans wrote in to describe ways to fix some of the key issues. (Yes, Apple fanbois being who they are, many first cursed me out for having the audacity to question the perfection of any Apple product. But they then revealed the path to watch happiness.)

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 02, 2019

Win10 version 1809 gets its laggard second 'April' cumulative update, KB 4501835
While most of Win10-dom saw their second monthly patches a week ago, those of us who follow such things have waited with bated breath to see when the new cumulative update for Win10 version 1809 would arrive. "C Week" (the week containing the third Tuesday of the month) came and went, then "D Week." Then we hit "E Week" — the undocumented week that contains the fifth Tuesday of the month, and nothing appeared there either.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 02, 2019

Throwback Thursday: Pretty much what everyone means by it
It's a few years ago, and this pilot fish is working at a big computer company where he's getting ready to move into a new position.

"I was leaving a team of highly skilled developers that I had hand-picked," fish says. "I insisted that, before I left, I got a chance to brief the new manager."

Fish's bosses assure him that his replacement is the cream of the crop, and perfectly suited for a dynamic, high-tech development environment.

At the appointed time, everyone sits down together: fish, his replacement and the team leads. Fish begins to explain the goals of the team, including the fact that it was dedicated to providing software that doesn't require a reboot to install.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 02, 2019

The best Android apps for team collaboration
Working together sure isn't what it used to be.

These days, you don't have to be in the same conference room — or, heck, even time zone — to work side by side with co-workers. Thanks to the variety of top-notch collaboration tools for our ever-connected devices, you can edit, organize, and communicate with anyone as if you were sitting right next to them, no matter where your corporeal form resides.

And you don't even have to be perched at a computer for that to hold true: With the right set of Android apps, you can put the power of collaboration into your pocket — ready to jump into action anytime, anywhere.

These are the best Android apps for effective and efficient collaboration, broken down by what they'll help you do.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
May 01, 2019

Top web browsers 2019: Chrome dumps user share
Chrome last month lost a record amount of user share, a measurement of browser activity, just one month after reaching a new all-time high.

Down. Up. Up. Down. Tracking the month-by-month movement of browsers' user share can be trying when the data doesn't show a crystal-clear short-term trend line. Does this mean that Chrome is poised to plummet? Doubtful. Could it? Certainly. Nothing stays on top forever.

Just ask Microsoft.

According to Internet analytics vendor Net Applications, Chrome's user share plunged 2.2 percentage points in April to 65.6%, its lowest mark since October. The fall was over half a point more than the previous record, set in August 2013, when Chrome accounted for a mere 16% of all user share and Microsoft's Internet Explorer (IE) was the beast of browsers with 57.6%.

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Enterprise Application News
May 01, 2019

Office 365: A guide to the updates
Office 365 subscribers always have the latest version of Microsoft Office — currently Office 2016. They also get more frequent software updates than those who have purchased Office 2016 without a subscription, which means subscribers have access to the latest features, security patches and bug fixes. But it can be hard to keep track of the changes in each update and know when they're available. We're doing this for you, so you don't have to.

Following are key updates to Office 365 for Windows since Office 2016 was released in September 2015 — all the 2017 updates and the most important ones from 2016 and late 2015, with the latest releases shown first. We'll add info about new updates as they're rolled out.

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Enterprise Application News
May 01, 2019

About that Windows 7 End-of-Life nag screen: It ain't working
Windows 7 is nearing end of support. That's an indisputable fact. Many Windows 7 users have been greeted by the cheerful death proclamation shown in the screenshot.

Microsoft We don't know how many Windows 7 customers have seen that screen, but we do know what effect the death announcement has had on Windows 7 usage so far.

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Enterprise Application News
May 01, 2019

Wayback Wednesday: At least he asked
Malware from the web is slowly becoming a problem where this support pilot fish works.

"We have about two tickets a week with users saying they have thousands of viruses and they need to download software," says fish.

"Now, every machine has virus protection, and everyone runs locked-down in user-only mode to prevent the rogue installation of software. But we have decided we need to increase our user awareness after the following ticket was received at the help desk:

"‘I just received an ominous warning that my computer was infected with several viruses. I tried running the program to remove these viruses (as it indicated for me to do), but I'm not sure it worked.

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Enterprise Application News
May 01, 2019

Apple results: The numbers that matter
iPhones don't matter anymore. People are buying less hardware, want the products they use to last longer and are more prepared to invest in access rather than ownership. These are the big takeaways from Apple's fiscal call.

iPhones don't matter anymore I've been saying this since before people understood what I was saying. I continue to argue it now: Yes, iPhones will be the center of Apple's super-private and ultra-secure ecosystem, but the neurotic desire to purchase a new one annually is going to shrink in favour of a more Earth-friendly (and, indeed, climate responsible) approach of making the best out of the device you've already got.

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Enterprise Application News
Apr 30, 2019

Amazon goes live with its blockchain managed service
After nearly a year of testing, Amazon on Tuesday announced the general availability its Amazon Managed Blockchain, a fully managed service that makes it easy to create and manage scalable blockchain networks.

Amazon originally announced the blockchain-as-a-service (BaaS) at its AWS re:Invent conference last June, inviting companies to sign up for a pilot of it.

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Enterprise Application News
Apr 30, 2019

FDA to pilot A.I., consider blockchain, to track and trace food
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced today a "new era of smarter food safety" under which it will test artificial intelligence and machine learning to better assess foodborne illness risks from imports and explore blockchain for tracking all foods before they hit grocery store shelves.

In February, the FDA announced pilot programs focused on tracking the movement of medicines throughout the supply chain undere the authority of the Drug Supply Chain Security Act of 2013. The pilots include the use of blockchain.

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Enterprise Application News
Apr 30, 2019

8 handy hidden features for Google Calendar on Android
Google Calendar is a core part of the Android productivity package — but if all you're using is what you see on the app's surface, you're missing out on some pretty powerful possibilities.

Yes, oh yes: Just like so many of our modern digital tools, there's more to Google Calendar than meets the eye. And while the majority of the service's advanced options revolve around the Calendar website, the Calendar Android app has its share of handy out-of-sight options that are specific to the mobile experience. From time-saving shortcuts to efficiency-boosting options, they're all things that have the potential to make your life easier in small but significant ways.

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
Apr 30, 2019

What think we know about Apple's 5G modem development plans
Apple's peace deal with Qualcomm and the subsequent exit of Intel from the modem business shows it wants to build its own 5G modems, but it is proving a challenging task.

Why does 5G matter? Mobile fast bandwidth, 5G makes it possible to deploy multiple connected hardware devices and service-related solutions.

Everything from smart cities to smart power grids will make some use of 5G. And consumers will likely consume an awful lot of video, games and AR "experiences".

To read this article in full, please click here



Enterprise Application News
Apr 30, 2019

The plotting thickens
It's the late 1970s and pilot fish is working for a small company that produces custom solutions involving computer hardware, software or both. A large customer wants a pair of drafting machines — pen plotters that can produce large-scale physical engineering drawings from CAD systems. 

And fish's company comes through, integrating the plotters with DEC PDP-11 computers, which had a pair of DEC RX-01 8-inch floppy disk drives to import and export the CAD data. The flatbed plotters measured about 4 by 10 feet, and the huge sheets of BoPET polyester film that are used for the drawings rather than paper are held in place by tiny holes in the flatbed that lead to a vacuum chamber, like an air hockey table running in reverse.

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Enterprise Application News
Apr 30, 2019

How to use Google Drive for collaboration
Many people think of Google Drive as a cloud storage and sync service, and it is that — but it also encompasses a suite of online office apps that are comparable with Microsoft Office. Google Docs (the word processor), Google Sheets (the spreadsheet app) and Google Slides (the presentation app) can import, export, or natively edit Microsoft Office files, and you can use them to work together with colleagues on a document, spreadsheet or presentation, in real time if you wish.

With a Google Account, individuals get free use of Docs, Sheets and Slides and up to 15GB of free Google Drive storage. Those who need more storage can upgrade to a Google One plan starting at $2 per month.

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Enterprise Application News
Apr 30, 2019

Microsoft tells IT admins to nix 'obsolete' password reset practice
Microsoft last week recommended that organizations no longer force employees to come up with new passwords every 60 days.

The company called the practice - once a cornerstone of enterprise identity management - "ancient and obsolete" as it told IT administrators that other approaches are much more effective in keeping users safe.

[ Related: The best places to find Windows 10 ISOs ] "Periodic password expiration is an ancient and obsolete mitigation of very low value, and we don't believe it's worthwhile for our baseline to enforce any specific value," Aaron Margosis, a principal consultant for Microsoft, wrote in a post to a company blog.

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Enterprise Application News
Apr 29, 2019

Microsoft Patch Alert: April patches have sharp edges, with several missing, others reappearing
You have to wonder who's testing this stuff.

Admins, in particular, have had a tough month. April brought widespread breakdowns - bluescreens, hangs, very sluggish behavior - to hundreds of thousands of Win7 and 8.1 machines. This wasn't a "small percentage" kind of event. For some companies, rebooting overnight on Tuesday brought seas of blue screens on Wednesday morning.

The first round of cumulative updates and Monthly Rollups arrived on Patch Tuesday, but the now-ubiquitous second round didn't show up until late Thursday afternoon, two and a half weeks later. Talk about admins taking a beating.

We still have one Tuesday left this month - the mythical "E week" that Microsoft never talks about - so the month may yet end with both a bang and whimper.

To read this article in full, please click here



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