Microsoft to Invest $25 Million in Affordability Over The Next Five Years

Microsoft is investing in accessibility technologies for its products. The company announced that it has set aside $25 million for the development of artificial intelligence technologies for accessibility projects.

“Around the world, only one in ten people with disabilities have access to assistive technologies and products,” Microsoft Chairman Brad Smith wrote in an official post. “By making artificial intelligence solutions more widely available, we believe that technology can have a broad impact on this important community.”

The program will have a total of five years of development expected to impact more than 1 billion people with disabilities around the world. Among the company’s concerns are ensuring that people get

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Microsoft is investing in accessibility technologies for its products. The company announced that it has set aside $25 million for the development of artificial intelligence technologies for accessibility projects.

“Around the world, only one in ten people with disabilities have access to assistive technologies and products,” Microsoft Chairman Brad Smith wrote in an official post. “By making artificial intelligence solutions more widely available, we believe that technology can have a broad impact on this important community.”

The program will have a total of five years of development expected to impact more than 1 billion people with disabilities around the world. Among the company’s concerns are ensuring that people get as much to see and hear, as to seize and still have the motor skills to use the tools of the company.

Searches will be based on experiences of users with disabilities; the goal is that they can go beyond three scenarios: work, modern life, and human relations.

With this, the program called IA for Accessibility will be started in three parameters. The first, according to Smith, is to partner with developers, universities, NGOs, and inventors to provide tools for inclusion in society, work and human relations.

With the development of new proposals, the idea is to use Microsoft’s artificial intelligence system to produce these technologies in a scalable way. Finally, the company would work with partners to include these technologies, to encourage more companies to adapt to an accessibility stance.

Recently, Microsoft introduced Translator, a tool that allows real-time speech and non-internet-speaking description that can be used by people with or without hearing.

Chinese Tech Firms Still Have Difficulty Promoting Gender Equality

Human Rights Watch has issued a report calling attention to the way large Chinese technology companies are wishing to fight machismo in the workplace. According to the statistical survey, almost one in five job ads posted in the country include information such as “men only” or “preferably men”.

According to Sophie Richardson, director of Human Rights Watch in China, some companies go deeper into sexism. This is the case with Alibaba, which advertised recruiting ads promising, as one of the benefits of the vacancies offered, that the work environment had beautiful work colleagues.

The <a href="http://money.cnn.com/2018/04/23/technology/china-women-sexist-job-ads-hrw/index.html?section=money_news_companies&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+rss%2Fmoney_news_companies+%28CNNMoney%3A+Companies+News%2

Human Rights Watch has issued a report calling attention to the way large Chinese technology companies are wishing to fight machismo in the workplace. According to the statistical survey, almost one in five job ads posted in the country include information such as “men only” or “preferably men”.

According to Sophie Richardson, director of Human Rights Watch in China, some companies go deeper into sexism. This is the case with Alibaba, which advertised recruiting ads promising, as one of the benefits of the vacancies offered, that the work environment had beautiful work colleagues.

The study and irregularities analyzed more than 36,000 job vacancies were found in internationally renowned companies including Alibaba, Baidu, Huawei, and Tencent.

Alibaba

The entity reviewed China’s largest e-commerce company and a consistent pattern of women’s exclusion was evident. In addition to serving job offers only for male professionals, the company also presented an advertisement containing as a benefit to men the presence of attractive women in the workplace.

On the allegations, the company responded that “they have clear and well-defined guidelines on equal opportunities regardless of sex” and that “it will lead to more rigorous reviews of recruitment announcements to ensure compliance with our policy.” Alibaba also reported that it is one of the companies that offer the most gender equality in its work environment, with one-third of management positions being held by women.

Huawei

In 2015, the smartphone maker announced a social media ad that said, “You want your salary to increase at a rate higher than real estate prices, marry a rich, beautiful, fair-skinned woman, and go to the peak of your life?”. However, the company claims that gender equality is embedded in its values.

Following the Human Rights Watch report, a Huawei spokesperson reported: “We will review the allegations brought to our attention in the report and also work to ensure that all recruitment advertising materials are fully gendered sensitive.”

Tencent

The company runs a prevalent instant messaging application in China, and according to the report in October 2016, an employee said during a US recruitment fair that the main reason he joined Tencent was that the pros human resources that interviewed him were sexually attractive.

“We investigate these incidents and are making immediate changes, we regret that they have occurred, and we will take swift action to ensure that they do not happen,” said a spokesman for the company. happen again “.

Baidu

The company responsible for the main search engine used by Chinese Internet users, Baidu had several ads that were identified as improper by the survey. In a video posted to a company account on social networks in September 2016, an employee appears to be speaking that he is happy in his professional life for being able to work alongside beautiful women. An ad for professionals interested in the content reviewer’s post, run in March 2017, required candidates to be males so they could work on weekends, holidays and at night.

A Baidu spokeswoman said: “We value the important work our employees do throughout the organization, and we deeply regret the cases where our job vacancies have not aligned with Baidu’s values.”

Even before the Human Rights Watch report was released, the company removed the inappropriate content from its social media and described it as “isolated cases that in no way reflect our company’s dedication to equality in the workplace.” Baidu also stated that 45 percent of its employees are female, a proportion that even counts with medium and high-ranking positions.

Government Accountability

In China, some legislations prohibit gender segregation in advertisements for job vacancies, but it fails to be descriptive of what constitutes discrimination in practice. The full report: “As a result, the level of oversight is low and Chinese authorities rarely proactively investigate companies that repeatedly violate relevant laws.”

With the report, Human Rights Watch calls on the Chinese government to make changes in legislation, including a new anti-discrimination law in the workplace. In addition, it also calls on companies to “adopt and enforce company policies that prohibit all forms of discriminatory job advertisements based on gender.”

Memory Can Be Improved With Deep Brain Stimulation

Have you ever thought about how many moments you have lived in your life and have you forgotten? How many things do you overlook every day? Have you ever wondered why? The truth is that our memory is very fragile and needs to be “recharged”.

One study published in Nature Communications showed a new scientific approach that can help our memory (and hence brain activity) with deep brain stimulation.

The impression of easy measurability of memory is not so well founded. Understanding how information can be processed by the nervous system and can be stored in the memory is a very complex process. Scientists at the University of Pennsylvania have decided to apply targeted stimulation to the lateral temporal cortex by enhancing memory through a neural device.

Brain stimulation: new discoveries

US researchers have found that information is remembered or forgotten based on the neural events that occur during

Have you ever thought about how many moments you have lived in your life and have you forgotten? How many things do you overlook every day? Have you ever wondered why? The truth is that our memory is very fragile and needs to be “recharged”.

One study published in Nature Communications showed a new scientific approach that can help our memory (and hence brain activity) with deep brain stimulation.

The impression of easy measurability of memory is not so well founded. Understanding how information can be processed by the nervous system and can be stored in the memory is a very complex process. Scientists at the University of Pennsylvania have decided to apply targeted stimulation to the lateral temporal cortex by enhancing memory through a neural device.

Brain stimulation: new discoveries

US researchers have found that information is remembered or forgotten based on the neural events that occur during the coding phase, which is the first stage that characterizes memory functioning and allows an event to be recorded as a pattern, image or concept.

A very promising tool for the modulation of neural activity seems to be precisely the direct stimulation of the lateral temporal cortex, thanks to the use of the electric current that is applied through electrodes implanted directly in the brain parenchyma.

The analysis of memory in real time

From Ebbinghaus to today, there have been countless studies on memory. Suffice it to mention Craik and Lockhart, according to whom it was necessary to analyze the mechanisms that allow us to remember information. In fact, they distinguished between a superficial encoding of information (based on the physical characteristics of the stimulus) and a deep codification (based on meaning).

The University of Pennsylvania study, on the other hand, carefully assessed the use of the lateral temporal cortex and stimulated it during the mnemonic activity. Specifically, the researchers used multivariate classifiers, distinct for each subject to decode neural activity during the coding phase and to understand the patterns of brain activity associated with the next phase of forgetfulness.

In short, the researchers analyzed brain activity in real time during the delivery of electrical impulses and produced customized models for each of the 25 patients undergoing the study. In this way, they could observe when the memory would fail and intervene with stimulation.

The study found that the stimulation of the left lateral temporal cortex increases the probability of recall of 15%. The subjects stimulated in the lateral temporal cortex were also more inclined to remember elements on which no stimulation had been performed.

Reliable results at the service of medicine

The results demonstrate that stimulating neural populations outside the MTL (short-term memory) reliably improves memory results.

Using a new method to apply stimulation, specific models have been developed for the neural activity of each patient, used to classify brain states related to memory. Stimulation was activated to intervene directly at times when memory was thought to be more scarce.

By demonstrating that the lateral temporal cortex is the primary objective for modulating the encoding phase of memory, we have gone beyond the previous work that attempted to influence episodic memory by stimulating the hippocampus and MTL. Therefore, the study could have significant consequences on the development of new therapies for the treatment of memory dysfunctions.

The criticisms

Direct brain stimulation is already regularly active in the treatment of Parkinson’s disease and the onset of epileptic seizures and has recently been explored as therapy in psychiatry.

The substantial difference compared to the past lies in the “closed circuit” system patented by US researchers, able to indicate when the brain is in a state of poor learning and to send electrical impulses to stimulate the brain area.

However, there have already been criticisms of this study which, although considered valid for the innovative methodological approach, is considered by some to be too invasive.

The hypothesis of such a traumatic approach, even in an experimental key, in the treatment of dementia is to be considered absolutely out of the question, at least until the results will be of these content.

A small reflection

Let us dwell on one thing: how much today we train our memory or do it in a different way than our parents. Reminding us is another US study published in the Memory journal, which underlines the emergence of the phenomenon of “cognitive offloading”, that is the tendency to use the Internet as a support for memory.

It has become so simple to type the keys of a smartphone to get information about anything that maybe we are no longer interested in remembering on their own. The other side of the coin is that we can be able to expand our capabilities with new technologies. Just like with the University of Pennsylvania study: a new frontier of science for the development of medicine on memory disorders.

River Cleaning Can be Done Through a Video Game

The idea came from a non-profit organization called Urban Rivers and is in the process of raising funds through crowdfunding.

While the NGO awaits the results of the campaign to expand the project, there is a prototype undergoing experimentation on the Chicago River, one of the major US channels located in the urban perimeter.

Robot operated by game unites fun and ecological awareness

As soon as the plan comes out of the paper with collective funding, it will be possible for anyone on the Internet to control the robot in charge of garbage in the river, using only computer commands.

Urban Rivers has already christened the serious game as “Trashbot Game,” something in Portuguese as “garbage robot game.”

By bringing together fun and eco-consciousness into one initiative, Nick Rivers, co-founder of Urban Rivers, expects the game to

The idea came from a non-profit organization called Urban Rivers and is in the process of raising funds through crowdfunding.

While the NGO awaits the results of the campaign to expand the project, there is a prototype undergoing experimentation on the Chicago River, one of the major US channels located in the urban perimeter.

Robot operated by game unites fun and ecological awareness

As soon as the plan comes out of the paper with collective funding, it will be possible for anyone on the Internet to control the robot in charge of garbage in the river, using only computer commands.

Urban Rivers has already christened the serious game as “Trashbot Game,” something in Portuguese as “garbage robot game.”

By bringing together fun and eco-consciousness into one initiative, Nick Rivers, co-founder of Urban Rivers, expects the game to ostracize as soon as possible:

The robot is an intelligent alternative to river cleaning

In addition to the attention-grabbing interactivity, the robot is viewed by the NGO as a smart alternative to the traditional cleaning method using kayaks.

According to the organizers of the project, the seasonal cleaning using kayaks allows the garbage to reappear when the cleaning crew is not operating, while the robot could be prepared to operate continuously.

It is expected that by April some machines are already working on cleaning the rivers.

Could Social Media Cause Depression in Children?

For years, many people have repeatedly drawn attention to the bad influence and addiction that can negatively shape the behavior of people attached to social networks. Recently, a general practitioner named Rangan Chatterjee in the United Kingdom received a 16-year-old boy after he injured himself and ended up in the hospital for accidents and emergencies.

After receiving the child, the first thought that animated the doctor “was to put him on antidepressants,” says the doctor. But chatting with the boy, Chatterjee quickly suspected a cause-and-effect relationship between his use of social media and his poor mental health.

Dr. Chatterjee, therefore, suggested a simple solution – the teenager should try to wean himself off social media, limiting himself to just an hour before going to bed. In the course of a few weeks, he should extend this to two hours at night and two in the morning. After a

For years, many people have repeatedly drawn attention to the bad influence and addiction that can negatively shape the behavior of people attached to social networks. Recently, a general practitioner named Rangan Chatterjee in the United Kingdom received a 16-year-old boy after he injured himself and ended up in the hospital for accidents and emergencies.

After receiving the child, the first thought that animated the doctor “was to put him on antidepressants,” says the doctor. But chatting with the boy, Chatterjee quickly suspected a cause-and-effect relationship between his use of social media and his poor mental health.

Dr. Chatterjee, therefore, suggested a simple solution – the teenager should try to wean himself off social media, limiting himself to just an hour before going to bed. In the course of a few weeks, he should extend this to two hours at night and two in the morning. After applying this solution for a while, the doctor noted a significant improvement in the child’s well-being. And after six months, the teenager’s mother sent a letter to the doctor stating that he was happier at school and integrated into his local community.

From this case, if we still had doubts about the negative consequences of social networks on the behavior of users, for the doctor, it is clearly established without any other form of proof that “social media has a negative impact on mental health.” He added: “I think it’s a big problem and we need rules: how to educate society to use technology to help us rather than harm us?”

Some people have long seen the drawbacks associated with addiction to technology in general and adopted radical solutions. Among these people, we have for example Steve Jobs who told Nick Bilton in 2010 during an interview that his children had never used an iPad. He added that “we limit the use of new technologies at home.” It is not only Steve Job who is aware of the dangers to which children or young people are exposed. Evan Williams, one of the founders of Twitter also said a few years ago that his two boys do not have iPad, but rather books that they can read at any time.

To go in the same direction, a group of experts from the Child Welfare sent the end of last month a letter Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg to ask him to close Messenger Kids, the first application of the Facebook social network designed specifically for children under 13 years old. As arguments put forward, the group explains that this could create an addiction to digital devices and social media in children, which would have the effect of undermining the good development of children.

For Louise Theodosiou, a psychiatrist-counselor at Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital in the UK, one of the most precise indications that children spend too much time on their phone is their behavior during a session with a doctor. Psychiatrist. According to her, “two or three years ago, it was very unusual for a child to answer their phone or a message at a meeting, but now it’s common.”

And among those who are addicted to these technologies, Theodosiou argues that some children, even if they are not numerous, are so addicted that they stopped coming out of their room because of their dependence on social media, gaming platforms or both. “These children live in a fictional world, sometimes to the detriment of their physical health.

A study from the University of Glasgow has shown that many teens are so invested in social media and so anxious to miss messages that they log in the middle of the night to make updates to their account, leading to sleep deprivation.

Other children are so attached to these networks that parents are forced to sleep with the home router to ensure that children can not connect to the wifi in the middle of the night, reports Theodosiou. Besides, even for children whose use of social media may be considered normal, there are still dangers in how the Internet has become an intermediary in the lives of friends and celebrities, warns the counselor.

According to Dr. Theodosiou’s analysis, one of the reasons for the poor influence of these networks on young people is that “young people need to look at others compulsively and get angry because they feel that their life is not like that of others. She added that they think their friends have a better life than themselves, even if they only see an idealized version of the lives of others.

To provide solutions to this phenomenon that is not universally accepted, Karim Palant, Director of Public Policy for Facebook in the UK, told the BBC: “Our research shows that when we use social media to communicate with people who are dear to us, this can be beneficial for our well-being. Apple, for its part, has recently faced calls from its investors to act on smartphone addiction, with software that limits how long children can use their device.

But for Dr. Theodosiou parents can keep an eye on the time children spend online and make sure it does not interfere with activities such as socializing, exercising, eating and sleep, or consider banning devices at mealtimes and take them away an hour before bedtime. The doctor also advises to talk “regularly to children about what they are doing online, messages they have written that day, who they are friends with and how it affects their mood.”

But these solutions will they effectively address the problem?

Fake News is Less Manipulative Than Thought

Fake News has been a hot topic since the 2016 US election campaign. A new study now suggests that fake news is not as powerful as it is supposed to do. Although the maliciously misinformed websites spread quickly, they are virtually never the only source of information for users.

According to the three authors, it is the first study on fake news that deals with users and their network behavior rather than focusing on the websites themselves. As the New York Times writes, it came as a surprise result: even extreme users, who had positioned themselves clearly on the pro-Trump side of the US election campaign, consumed significantly more real than fake news.

The study is based on the analysis of the browser data of approximately 2525 US Americans who had voluntarily a

Fake News has been a hot topic since the 2016 US election campaign. A new study now suggests that fake news is not as powerful as it is supposed to do. Although the maliciously misinformed websites spread quickly, they are virtually never the only source of information for users.

According to the three authors, it is the first study on fake news that deals with users and their network behavior rather than focusing on the websites themselves. As the New York Times writes, it came as a surprise result: even extreme users, who had positioned themselves clearly on the pro-Trump side of the US election campaign, consumed significantly more real than fake news.

The study is based on the analysis of the browser data of approximately 2525 US Americans who had voluntarily agreed to this process. It also analyzed all website visits before and after the election in 2016. Websites that had posted at least two proven false news were added to the Fake News category.

80 percent of the articles supported Donald Trump against Hillary Clinton. Accordingly, the ten percent of the strongest Trump supporters accounted for around 65 percent of visits to the relevant websites. But these users also consumed significantly less fake news than was often assumed: six percent of the Trump supporters ‘and one percent of the Clinton supporters’ news was fake news – the rest was classic and factually correct news sites.

The study does not exclude the possibility of fake news influence on the election results but clearly argues that this phenomenon had the assumed power.

One result of the analysis, however, Facebook’s recently announced the change of strategy on the subject right: Although marked the social network for some months fake news – but there was, according to the study, anyone who has consumed both the fake news and the fact to check.

Are We Successful in Our Relationships?

Lovely emoticons flood our Facebook page. With every new update, WhatsApp and other such social media pages add another set of mind-blowing emoticons. We will search and search for the right emoticon to express our exact state of mind and heart when we chat with others in our group.

Nice. Really nice!

We will be oh- so – professionally courteous to our colleagues, superiors, and juniors in our workplace. We will bow down and say thank you. We will warmly hold on to their hands to express our appreciation. We will smile and give people a thumbs up to show them that we respect their work. We will hug people professionally to give a personal touch to our professionalism.

Nice. Really nice!

But do we ever appreciate or even express our emotions to our family members? Why do we reserve such basic common courtesies for people who fall in our second and third

Lovely emoticons flood our Facebook page. With every new update, WhatsApp and other such social media pages add another set of mind-blowing emoticons. We will search and search for the right emoticon to express our exact state of mind and heart when we chat with others in our group.

Nice. Really nice!

We will be oh- so – professionally courteous to our colleagues, superiors, and juniors in our workplace. We will bow down and say thank you. We will warmly hold on to their hands to express our appreciation. We will smile and give people a thumbs up to show them that we respect their work. We will hug people professionally to give a personal touch to our professionalism.

Nice. Really nice!

But do we ever appreciate or even express our emotions to our family members? Why do we reserve such basic common courtesies for people who fall in our second and third circles? Why do we hesitate to show our appreciation and our gratitude to our immediate family?

A father spends two and a half decades of his life to give his children a decent education. A mother spends an entire lifetime taking care of the physical and emotional needs of the entire family. Sisters go out of their way to do things for their dear brothers. Brothers go out of their way to do things for their sisters.

And last but not the least; children go out of their way to do things for their aging parents.

Yet, there is never any appreciation for their time, money, efforts and love.

Yes, this post may well end up in the category called – Philosophy for youth.

That surely does not mean that only the youth needs a big dose of philosophy.

Because of all of us, at all ages, need to think about such things.

I would like to deviate a little from the main topic to make a crucial point here:

I watched a video clipping of about 4 minutes over Whatsapp. A lovely young lass comes jogging over from the seashore one fine evening and sits beside a middle-aged young woman. They start chatting, and the woman briefly shares her current predicament in life with this youngster. Her married son and daughter in law apparently left her when she reprimanded him over some domestic issue. She stated with a quiet dignity about how we all enter this world crying and wailing our lungs out and how we need to master the art of learning to smile despite the setbacks we face in life.

Why are youngsters always blamed for such situations? Why do we so conveniently shift the blame to people who are not around? Why do we judge and condemn people without knowing the real issue?

Relationships matter. Relationships matter the most in all our lives. Yet, when it comes to compromising or adapting or changing outdated ideas, we all struggle.

Appreciation is not always about being courteous. ‘Please’ and ‘Thank you’ may grease and ease out strained relationships. But they will never solve the real issues within the relationship.

Appreciation is also not about acknowledging the effort that goes into making a great dish at home or completing a difficult project with a complete focus on the time frame and quality.

Appreciation is about observing how our mother goes about doing the most mundane tasks at home quietly, willingly and cheerfully.

Appreciation is about how a deadline or quality is maintained despite a crisis on the home front.

Appreciation is about how that security guard at the office gate always greets us with a smile despite our eternally preoccupied state of mind.

Appreciation is about how our children put up with all our outdated beliefs and notions even when they personally do not believe in them. They do this because they love us!

Appreciation is about how our parents tolerate our ridiculous flighty dreams quietly and are always there to support us and pick us up when we come crashing down from our dream world!

Look up. Look within. Look around. Look down. Look through people. Look….See…..Observe…………Feel……

Let’s respect people for what they represent. Let’s love people the way they are. Let’s connect with people to broaden our perspectives of life. Let’s communicate openly with people to share our thoughts and feelings.

Let us learn to express ourselves through our hearts and souls instead of using those lovely emoticons and one-sided video clippings that show people how we should feel about things and situations.

Father’s Day, Mother’s Day, Valentine’s Day, Raksha Bandhan…..we may well have dedicated a day in a year to celebrate all our relationships. But unless we connect at a personal, emotional level we cannot really call any relationship a successful one.

A relationship, any relationship thrives on love.

A relationship, any relationship connects two people.

And unless there is mutual understanding, two-way communication and a shift in perspectives from both ends………we cannot really call any relationship a successful one.