*There is little more honorable than stepping outside of the proverbial box and taking a chance on something — especially when it comes from a sincere desire to empower another. I am thinking of Brookview House, a homeless shelter and affordable housing complex in the Dorchester Center neighborhood of Boston; where a group of volunteers come together to teach teens aged 13 to 18 how to code.
Now, I’m no “techie,” but I do know that anyone living on planet earth without computer skills in this day and age is either unemployed, underemployed or somewhere in between. Technology is both the “wave of the present AND the future” and knowledge of how to work your way around a computer (not to mention a mac) is more likely to not only get you a job, but keep you on one longer than someone with limited computer skills.
So imagine knowing how to actually CREATE code. Hell, now we’re talking building your own tech business and just sitting back and waiting for the customers to roll in.
I pray this incredibly thoughtful experiment (for lack of another word because it is unprecedented) catches on with similar establishments.Continue reading →
*Is it just a coincidence that shortly after I sent a friendly email to Mark Zuckerberg through “his people” saying a simple “Hello,” I got an email from the Facebook founder himself?
In the email, which really, I swear, I didn’t even have an agenda for sending, I simply mentioned that I had just finished writing an article about himand then I clicked on send. I was actually on Facebook, uploading the article (which I didn’t even link to him in the email) at the time. No big deal, I do this with at least 85% of my articles. I don’t recall what it was that drew my attention to the man, personally. But it was SOMETHING that appeared on Facebook, and I just responded to it.
*Who wants to be a millionaire? A better question might be, who doesn’t? Money, lot’s of it, can ease a lot of problems. But it can also cause many more. Just ask Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg. The former college computer programming geek-turned-gazillionaire spends millions of dollars in corporate expenses not just to upgrade and update his giant social networking platform, but to keep enough security detail in place to protect him from vultures of the human kind, who continually threatened his life.
Kind of places greater appreciation on the value of life, yes?
Last year alone Facebook’s Annual Report shows $4.3 million dollars was spent on protecting the entrepreneurs life.
*It was only a matter of time for some genius to come up with a brilliant way to make a buck, based on something we can really use. I just don’t like the fact that it wasn’t me. But, oh well. Back to the lab again. ‘Zus’ is that something. We often forget where we parked our car, and no matter how many times we push the key button, if we’re nowhere near it…
It ain’t gonna work!
But then again, that same “genius” has no doubt experienced the same thing and one day woke up and said, wait! I’m going to create something so this won’t happen to me or anyone else again!
Git ‘er done. And he did.
The “Zus Smart Car Finder and USB Car Charger” mainly works to locate your car.
Here’s how it works! You know that big hole in your car’s dash, formerly known as the cigarette lighter, they had to do something with it for those of us who don’t smoke. So Zus plugs into this 12-volt power point which automatically tells its associated app to save the location of the car when it is parked.
Zus is also rather inconspicuous too. Nothing flashy that sparks attention. Instead, its made of black plastic and has a flanged head with two USB ports. The app measures 3.25 inches long, and an inch at its widest point. The USB ports sit on slightly angled surfaces for better access. ZUS also integrates white LED lights to let you know when it’s on, and makes it easier to find and plug in USB cables at night. Continue reading →
*Being an entrepreneur can be both exciting and frightening. The freedom to be on your own clock, so to speak, and have the impetus to actually dosomething with all of those crazy ideas that come into your head can be truly exhilarating. But the frightening part is the risk-taking involved; the expense — especially if it is exercised with reckless abandon — and not having a mentor to shadow and learn from.
I can recall a mentor from one of my entrepreneurial pursuits, one that I am stil proudly involved with today, told me (well, reminded me because it is something I already knew, but only took to heart when he said it), that, “You can’t learn how to make money from a broke person.”
I used the “broke person” example here, but you can apply this to anything in life. Can you trust good marriage advice to come from someone who has been divorced several times? Can an unhealthy person give you health tips? And just use your head here, someone struggling with mental illness can’t…well, you get my drift.
But does this stop people from flapping their lips to tell you what YOU should be doing — and how you should be doing it?
Hell no. That’s just the way it is. And though it often keeps life interesting, you don’t have to be down with it.
So when I came across an article that had a successful entrepreneur who had co-founded a business so well known around the world that it has become a verb(“I’m doing Uber today.” “I’m taking an Uber.” “Let’s Uber there!”) giving lessons on life and leadership, my ears perked up.
*We ALL know that the public educational system in the United States has been woefully deficient in including the contributions of African Americans. I still remember the moment when I, as a 2nd grader, pieced together than the black American revolutionist Chrispus Attucks fought in the same Revolutionary War that included Paul Revere and the rest of the white folks in powdered wigs and stockings. I like to tell myself that things have changed since then, and they HAVE, but when you stumble across a largely untold, unknown story like this, you have to wonder “how much?”.
97-year-old retired African American NASA mathematician Katherine G. Johnson was one of them. She was one of dozens of “human computers” who were hired by NASA Langley Memorial Research Laboratory in the 1940s.
They were called “human computers” because before machines were designed, built, and perfected, these pioneering women crunched the numbers necessary to figure out everything from wind tunnel resistance to rocket trajectories to safe reentry angles..
If you’re like me, just reading those terms almost gives you a headache. Continue reading →
*You’ve probably been hearing about “fold-able smartphones” for a couple of years now. Just when you had stopped laughing at folks who still carry those old, cheap flip phones that you stopped using as soon as you could afford to, Samsung is working on making your expensive smartphone do the same thing: Flip open.
But here’s the thing, well…aside from the fact that the word “flip” has been changed to “foldable,” and it’s better looking; this new foldable smartphone is going to double as a tablet.
And reports coming out of South Korea say we can expect the new phone, referred to by insiders as “Project Valley” (no one would ever guess what that is!), to hit store shelves sometime in 2017. Continue reading →
*I guess we can file this under karmic retribution, or perhaps the Shakespearean saying, “Thou doth protest too much.” After Edward Jones, a tenured professor of 20 years at Alabama A&M University, filed a lawsuit against the school with the intention of bringing certain administrative concerns to light; and the school, in turn, started termination proceedings against him, an irrefutable sex tape of Jones was stumbled upon in the process.
If we were keeping score, this would definitely be one for the university!
The tape, found on a university-owned laptop at Jones’ home, showed Jones in three sex acts, twice showing the professor having oral sex with two different male students. All three instances occurred on the Alabama A&M campus, the school said.
Jones’ lawsuit had claimed years of harrassment by the school after he attempted to reveal the administrative issues.
Jones’ attorney, Lee Loder, is probably trying to wrap his head around this new revelation because he is mum beyond his clients actual lawsuit, thus far. Continue reading →