Tech Insights
Jun. 12, 2013

Defending NSA PRISM's big data tools
It's understandable that democracy-loving citizens everywhere are outraged by the idea that the U.S. government has backdoor access to digital details surrounding email messages, phone conversations, video chats, social networks and more on the servers of mainstream service providers. But, the more you know about the technologies being used by the National Security Agency, the less likely you are to view the project as a ham-fisted effort that's "trading a cherished American value for an unproven theory," as one opinion piece contrasted personal privacy with big data analysis.More

Congratulations to SoftLayer on its sale to IBM
IBM recently announced it will acquire Dallas-based startup SoftLayer Technologies Inc., an MTBC Chairman's Circle member. SoftLayer is being sold for an undisclosed amount, although both Forbes and The Wall Street Journal have reported a sale price of $2 billion.More

Member news: Award Solutions recognized in best companies to work for in Texas 2013 awards program
MTBC member Award Solutions was recently honored with a ranking of No. 2 in the Best Companies to Work for in Texas 2013 list as published by Texas Monthly. The Best Companies to Work for in Texas 2013 program was designed to recognize the best employers in the state, and in particular, the ones that make it a priority to create better workplaces for their employees.More

Hie Electronics announces partnership with General Electric to license cloud store manager software
Hie Electronics, a pioneer of innovation for long-term, scalable data storage solutions and the manufacturer of the TeraStack Solution, recently announced it has reached an agreement with General Electric as a licensee of GE's new cloud store manager software. More

Why insiders, not hackers, are the biggest threat to cybersecurity
The National Security Agency leaks by Edward Snowden will easily go down as one of the biggest revelations of the year, if not the decade. But the episode also raises new questions about the risk that insiders pose to government and corporate cybersecurity, in spite of the attention lavished on foreign hackers.More

Obama: 'Moment is now' for immigration reform as Senate begins debate
Dallas Business Journal
As the Senate prepares to kick off debate on immigration reform, President Barack Obama said the "moment is now" for Congress to fix a broken system that's holding back our economy and keeping family members apart.More

3 things you don't really need to be a great leader
We all do what we do because of deep-seated needs. Most founder-owners, for example, start businesses because of a need for freedom and autonomy. Most leaders arrive in leadership positions driven by a need to make a difference. Some needs sour, however, taking the edge off otherwise great leaders and dragging them down to the level of the merely mediocre. More

New algorithm solves cloud security issues
MIT researchers have developed a new algorithm that could help make up-and-coming cloud computing technology more secure. Researchers from MIT's Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory presented their work on a new encryption scheme for cloud computing at the Association for Computing Machinery's 45th Symposium on the Theory of Computing.More

A Google-funded study quantifies cloud computing's environmental benefits
Cloud computing — using a centralized data center to process and store you data so that you can access them wherever you are — is supposed to be more cost-effective and environmental friendly than conventional data centers. But, how do you quantify those benefits?More

Graphene and semiconductor technology together: Smaller, cheaper, better
The Research Council of Norway via ScienceDaily
Mobile phones that bend, self-powered nanodevices, new and improved solar cell technology, and windows that generate electricity are but a few of the potential products from the union of semiconductors and graphene. Semiconductors grown on graphene at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology may be the most important research breakthrough of 2012 in Norway. More

The avatar will see you now
MIT Technology Review
Most patients who enter the gym of the San Mateo Medical Center in California are there to work with physical therapists. But a few who had knee replacements are being coached by a digital avatar instead.More

8 Apple changes that matter
Apple recently showed off upcoming revisions of OS X and iOS at its Worldwide Developer Conference, along with new portable and desktop computers. Among the products and features discussed, these eight are the ones that matter most.More

The avatar will see you now
MIT Technology Review
Most patients who enter the gym of the San Mateo Medical Center in California are there to work with physical therapists. But a few who had knee replacements are being coached by a digital avatar instead.More

Method creates atomic-scale semiconductors
An inexpensive material that can be "grown" in layers only one-atom thick has yielded atomic-scale semiconductor thin films. The technique could be applied to make these devices wide enough to coat wafers that are 2 inches wide or larger.More

IBM buys cloud computing firm in deal said to be worth $2 billion
The New York Times
IBM recently announced that it had agreed to buy SoftLayer Technologies, a cloud computing company, in an effort to strengthen IBM's position in the fast-growing market for computing sold to businesses as a service delivered over the Internet.More

Valuing physics over PE, Colorado schools test novel pay scale
A wealthy school district in Colorado is launching a radical experiment that sets a different pay scale for each category of educator, ensuring that even the best third-grade teacher would never earn as much as a veteran high school math teacher. The new system, which takes effect next month for all 3,300 educators, has sparked fury and resentment among some teachers and some parents. But, it has also drawn interest from superintendents around the nation.More

Jindal School to provide help, seed money to 5 entrepreneurs
The University of Texas at Dallas
Wanted: Five entrepreneurs with great business ideas. The Naveen Jindal School of Management will provide office space, mentoring, education and up to $25,000 in seed money as part of a new startup launch program. The Jindal School is accepting applications for its new Master of Science in Innovation and Entrepreneurship Startup Launch Program, designed to take entrepreneurs who enroll as students from idea to launch. More

Banks use big data to understand customers across channels
Several large U.S. banks are using big data primarily to understand how customers use their different channels, such as branches, online, mobile, call centers and ATMs, according to a recent study by Thomas Davenport and Jill Dyché at the International Institute for Analytics working with SAS Institute.More

A brave new world: Big data's big dangers
NPR (commentary)
New technologies are not all equal. Some do nothing more than add a thin extra layer to the top soil of human behavior. Some technologies, however, dig deeper, uprooting the norms of human behavior and replacing them with wholly new possibilities. More