Posts Tagged ‘focus’

postheadericon OPEN SOURCE FOCUS: VLC Media Player

As part of our ongoing promotion of open-source pioneers and projects, FlashRouters covers the benefits of the free, open-source, VLC Media Player.

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postheadericon ICO urges businesses to focus on becoming GDPR compliant

The ICO says businesses should stop focussing on the consequences of non-compliance and instead be motivated by the advantages of getting GDPR right.

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postheadericon Microsoft expands global YouthSpark initiative to focus on computer science

SAN FRANCISCO — Sept. 16, 2015 — Microsoft Corp. announced on Wednesday a new commitment of $ 75 million in community investments over the next three years to increase access to computer science education for all youth, and especially for those from under-represented backgrounds. Through the company’s global YouthSpark initiative, scores of nonprofit organizations around the world will receive cash donations and other resources to provide computer science education to diverse populations of young people in their communities and prepare them with the computational-thinking and problem-solving skills necessary for success in an increasingly digital world.

“If we are going to solve tomorrow’s global challenges, we must come together today to inspire young people everywhere with the promise of technology,” said Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella. “We can’t leave anyone out. We’re proud to make this $ 75 million investment in computer science education to create new opportunities for students across the spectrum of diverse youth and help build a tech talent pipeline that will spark new innovations for the future.”

Over the next three years, Microsoft will deliver on this commitment through cash grants and nonprofit partnerships as well as unique program and content offerings to increase access to computer science education and build computational thinking skills for diverse populations of youth. One of the flagship programs is Technology Education and Literacy in Schools (TEALS), which pairs tech professionals from across the industry with classroom educators to team-teach computer science in U.S. high schools. TEALS aims to grow fivefold in the next three years, with the goal of working with 2,000 tech industry volunteers to reach 30,000 students in nearly 700 schools across 33 states. A key objective of TEALS is to support classroom educators as they learn the computer science coursework, preparing them to teach computer science independently after two years of team-teaching.

Nadella reinforced the company’s commitment to computer science education today during the annual Dreamforce conference hosted by Salesforce where he called upon thousands of tech professionals to serve as TEALS volunteers and help broaden the opportunity for students of all backgrounds to learn computer science in high school.

“Computer science is a foundational subject — like algebra, chemistry or physics — for learning how the world works, yet it’s offered in less than 25 percent of American high schools,” said Microsoft President Brad Smith. “We need to increase access to computer science and computational thinking for all students, especially those from diverse populations, by partnering across the industry and with teachers and schools to turn this situation around and change the paradigm for developing a more diverse tech talent pipeline.”

There are three additional key elements of Microsoft’s global commitment to increasing access for all youth to the full range of computing skills, from digital literacy to computer science.

  • Global philanthropic investments with nonprofits in 80 countries, including the Center for Digital Inclusion in Latin America, Silatech in the Middle East and Africa, CoderDojo Foundation in Europe, YCAB Foundation in Asia, and many others, will deliver a range of computing skills from digital literacy to computer science education to youth in local communities around the world.
  • Microsoft Imagine connects students with the tools, resources and experiences they need to turn their innovative ideas into reality. Whether it’s building a game or designing an app, Microsoft Imagine makes learning to code easy and accessible for students and educators, no matter their age or skill level and at no cost. Whether it’s free cloud services like Azure, online competitions via Imagine Cup that educators can incorporate into their curriculum, or fun self-serve learning tutorials, Microsoft Imagine helps bring a student’s technology passion to life through computer science.
  • YouthSpark Hub resources are designed to inspire youth about the full spectrum of computing skills, ranging from digital literacy to computer science engineering. In addition to providing access to the Microsoft Imagine tools, the YouthSpark Hub brings together opportunities to participate in activities such as DigiGirlz and YouthSpark Live, attend free YouthSpark Camps at the Microsoft Stores, and access training through nonprofit organizations supported by Microsoft around the world.

Since 2012, Microsoft YouthSpark has created new opportunities for more than 300 million youth around the world, offering technology skills training and connections to employment, entrepreneurship, and continued education or training.

More information about YouthSpark and access to tools and resources can be found at http://YouthSparkHub.com and http://imagine.microsoft.com.

Those wanting more information on the TEALS program and to learn more about how they can get involved should visit http://TEALSK12.org.

Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT” @microsoft) is the leading platform and productivity company for the mobile-first, cloud-first world, and its mission is to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more.

 

Note to editors: For more information, news and perspectives from Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft News Center at http://news.microsoft.com. Web links, telephone numbers and titles were correct at time of publication, but may have changed. For additional assistance, journalists and analysts may contact Microsoft’s Rapid Response Team or other appropriate contacts listed at http://news.microsoft.com/microsoft-public-relations-contacts.

 

 

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postheadericon Satya Nadella email to employees on sharpening business focus

Team,

Over the past few weeks, I’ve shared with you our mission, strategy, structure and culture. Today, I want to discuss our plans to focus our talent and investments in areas where we have differentiation and potential for growth, as well as how we’ll partner to drive better scale and results. In all we do, we will take a long-term view and build deep technical capability that allows us to innovate in the future.

With that context, I want to update you on decisions impacting our phone business and share more on last week’s mapping and display advertising announcements.

We anticipate that these changes, in addition to other headcount alignment changes, will result in the reduction of up to 7,800 positions globally, primarily in our phone business. We expect that the reductions will take place over the next several months.

I don’t take changes in plans like these lightly, given that they affect the lives of people who have made an impact at Microsoft. We are deeply committed to helping our team members through these transitions.

Phones. Today, we announced a fundamental restructuring of our phone business. As a result, the company will take an impairment charge of approximately $ 7.6 billion related to assets associated with the acquisition of the Nokia Devices and Services business in addition to a restructuring charge of approximately $ 750 million to $ 850 million.

I am committed to our first-party devices including phones. However, we need to focus our phone efforts in the near term while driving reinvention. We are moving from a strategy to grow a standalone phone business to a strategy to grow and create a vibrant Windows ecosystem that includes our first-party device family.

In the near term, we will run a more effective phone portfolio, with better products and speed to market given the recently formed Windows and Devices Group. We plan to narrow our focus to three customer segments where we can make unique contributions and where we can differentiate through the combination of our hardware and software. We’ll bring business customers the best management, security and productivity experiences they need; value phone buyers the communications services they want; and Windows fans the flagship devices they’ll love.

In the longer term, Microsoft devices will spark innovation, create new categories and generate opportunity for the Windows ecosystem more broadly. Our reinvention will be centered on creating mobility of experiences across the entire device family including phones.

Mapping. Last week, we announced changes to our mapping business and transferred some of our imagery acquisition operations to Uber. We will continue to source base mapping data and imagery from partners. This allows us to focus our efforts on delivering great map products such as Bing Maps, Maps app for Windows and our Bing Maps for Enterprise APIs.

Advertising. We also announced our decision to sharpen our focus in advertising platform technology and concentrate on search, while we partner with AOL and AppNexus for display. Bing will now power search and search advertising across the AOL portfolio of sites, in addition to the partnerships we already have with Yahoo!, Amazon and Apple. Concentrating on search will help us further accelerate the progress we’ve been making over the past six years. Last year Bing grew to 20 percent query share in the U.S. while growing our search advertising revenue 28 percent over the past 12 months. We view search technology as core to our efforts spanning Bing.com, Cortana, Office 365, Windows 10 and Azure services.

I deeply appreciate all of the ideas and hard work of everyone involved in these businesses, and I want to reiterate my commitment to helping each individual impacted.

I know many of you have questions about these changes. I will host an employee Q&A tomorrow to share more, and I hope you can join me.

Satya

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postheadericon US announces new cybersecurity unit with a focus on prevention

The Department of Justice has announced that it is creating a dedicated cybersecurity unit, with an eye on prevention rather, reports Gizmodo.

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