For years, it was talked about as India’s “Brain Drain.” Smart young students would take one of the most competitive entrance examinations in the world, get a bachelor’s degree in engineering-and promptly go West. Every year, out of the 250,000 students who appear for the entrance exams conducted by the seven Indian Institutes of Technology (located in Mumbai, Delhi, Kharagpur, Kanpur, Chennai, Guwahati, and Roorke), only 3,000 or so get selected. IIT professors estimate that about 25 to 30 percent graduates leave India right after the graduation. Many others gain some work experience before going abroad for a master’s degree in either business or science, or on an H1B visa that enables them to work in the United States.The result: IIT graduates are scattered across the high-tech world and can be seen aplenty in Silicon Valley and in organizations such as NASA, Microsoft, and IBM. The roster includes ace venture capitalist Vinod Khosla of … [Read more...] about Can India Plug Its Brain Drain?
Open door loans
When building our arsenal to face some of our country’s (and the world’s) most pressing problems, education stands as the most powerful weapon at our disposal. While the importance of access to information and the dissemination of knowledge as a whole has been widely recognized as a necessity, creating the infrastructure needed to actually make good upon these goals is often lacking. This seems particularly true when considering women in technology, whose lacking presence in the industry is often blamed upon a late introduction to the field or a lack of resources early on. So to address some of these problems, Abigail Seldin and her team of power women at Innovation Lab who are working to make college more affordable through the power of consumer tech.At the forefront of their efforts is College Abacus, a free online tool made possible by the nonprofit education entity ECMC. By giving prospective college students and their families deeper insights into the … [Read more...] about Abigail Seldin talks College Abacus and being a woman in tech
After years of decline, car theft is up in the United States, despite automaker security technology advances. Car thieves are relentless: If they want your car they’re going to get it. What are carmakers doing about it — and can tech help?Professional car theft rings account for the greatest number of stolen vehicles, typically packing them in container ships bound for overseas destinations where they’ll sell for much more than in the U.S. your stolen car may keep traveling, even if you’re no longer enjoying it.According to the FBI’s 2015 Uniform Crime Report (UCR), vehicle theft increased 3.1 percent in 2015 over 2014. The 2015 Hot Spots Vehicle Theft Report from the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) shows the metropolitan statistical areas with the highest vehicle theft rates; check your city and you’ll see that theft is probably ticking up.The UCR tallied 707,758 vehicle thefts in 2015. The average dollar loss is also increasing. … [Read more...] about If they want it, they’ll take it: Tech isn’t winning its fight against car thieves
With their green powertrains and luxury aspirations, the Fisker Karma plug-in hybrid and Tesla Model S EV are natural rivals.But will either brand survive?With the sudden departure Wednesday by Fisker Automotive founder and figurehead Henrik Fisker from his struggling and stalled car company, not to mention Tesla’s own recent high-profile PR flaps (which we’ll get to in a minute), it’s time to take stock of the history of both car companies and more importantly, look at what may lie ahead for two of the standout start-ups in the high-end EV car market.The visionsLike most upstart car companies, Fisker and Tesla are the brainchildren of dedicated individuals. These two men have added their names to a long list that includes John Z. DeLorean, Preston Tucker, and Malcolm Bricklin. …Both cars look gorgeous, but the Karma deserves the nod for its originality in both exterior and interior design.Fisker is the namesake of Henrik Fisker, a well-known car … [Read more...] about Fisker vs. Tesla: Two cutting-edge cars, two embattled companies
Working with online car sales leads since the early part of the dot-com era, the cofounders of the Detroit Trading Exchange saw firsthand the inefficiencies in the market and set out to address them.The result is a robust and active trading exchange where car dealers and others bid to buy more than 300,000 sales leads generated by consumer-facing Web sites each month.Two of the exchange's founders, John Campbell and Pete Bonner, both worked for StoneAge, which acquired the Car.com domain name for its consumer-facing activities and which was later sold to Autobytel. Don Campbell, president and chairman of the company, is the Exchange's third cofounder."We put our heads together and agreed there were a lot of inefficiencies in the space for both buyers and sellers and thought we should set up an exchange," John Campbell, who is now a senior vice president at the Exchange, told the E-Commerce Times.A widely recognized problem at the time was the integration work that buyers of sales leads … [Read more...] about SUCCESS STORY Detroit Trading Exchange: Swinging the Door Wide Open for Auto Leads
Let's talk about privacy. Is it a violation of your privacy if your phone knows where you are at all hours of the day and keeps detailed records without your telling it to? What if the phone never tells anyone else -- doesn't beam your location to Steve Jobs or Larry Page or the Pope or anyone at all? OK, maybe it will tell your computer where you've been, but only when you sync up. Or maybe it will tell Apple where you've been, only the data's been anonymized so they don't know it's you, they just know it's somebody. Is any of this OK with you?If you have an iPhone, this has been happening to you. Researchers Alasdair Allen and Pete Warden discovered recently that every move you make, your iPhone's watching you. They found a file in iOS 4 that stores your location history unencrypted. And when you sync that iPhone to a Mac or PC, that information gets saved on the computer as well. They've even made a little application you can use to review a map of your own travels, if you want.But … [Read more...] about WEEKLY RECAP Some iPhone to Watch Over Me
If done right, online selling of digital content -- including software, games, e-books, periodicals and other digital media -- can take traditional retail e-commerce a huge step further into a new and very different -- but potentially highly impactful -- sales and relationship-building environment.Unlike physical goods e-commerce, selling digital content should happen in the context of life. Ordering the sequel as one finishes an e-book, or an upgrade or subscription renewal while using an application, like security software, or additional resources, such as levels and expansion packs, in the context of a game, should be achieved without needing to switch to a new shopping context. Users should only be presented with relevant offers when selling is happening in context, rather than just a plethora of unrelated choices.Digital content providers can employ headless commerce, when the product itself -- whether a book, magazine, game, application or even a video -- is the commerce front … [Read more...] about EXPERT ADVICE Headless Commerce Lets the Product Sell Itself
After US$5.4 billion dollars and nearly a year of discussions, Advanced Micro Devices finalized its takeover of graphics chip maker ATI, setting the stage for a revived fight with Intel and Nvidia, which becomes the Intel graphics partner by default.AMD -- which promised integrated platforms next year for commercial, gaming and media computing -- said ATI's graphics technology is complementary to its own chips. AMD Chairman and CEO Hector Ruiz said the combined company would give users "a new level of choice."The keys for AMD to make the merger work and recoup its sizable investment will be to remain focused on its business and revenue without being distracted by the takeover, and pushing forward with innovative, integrated solutions, Gartner Vice President Martin Reynolds told the E-Commerce Times."That's the challenge -- to deal with Intel without being distracted, and longer term, to build value from it using third-party parts," he said, referring to AMD's larger rival and the PC … [Read more...] about AMD Finalizes ATI Acquisition
On January 3rd, when the U.S. Federal Reserve cut its targets for key interest rates for the first time this year, analysts said companies would begin to see the results of lower borrowing costs in about six months, as the lower rates would spur corporate spending.Technology was supposed to be a key beneficiary, as companies were supposed to take advantage of the cheaper interest rates to invest in new hardware, software and services.Yet six months and six interest-rate cuts later, technology stocks are still in the doldrums, as corporations continue to hold off on investing in new software and systems. Technology companies are lowering their outlooks for the current quarter's results, and analysts are not looking for any improvement in sector earnings until late this year at the earliest.So what happened?Analysts say the tech malaise is due to more than just a weak economy. A trough in the business cycle, a buildup in inventories that began late last year, the shakeout in the … [Read more...] about When Will U.S. Rate Cuts Help Techs?
The amount of money that American consumers are losing to fraudulent Internet schemes is growing,according to a report released Thursday by the National Consumers League(NCL).The average loss per person rose from US$310 in 1999 to $412 during the firstnine months of 2000, the study found."We're seeing some positive trends, but there are also alarming signs oftrouble, especially concerning the use of debits from consumers' bankaccounts in payments related to certain categories of fraud," said NFIC/IFWdirector Susan Grant.The Washington, D.C.-based watchdog group compiles its statisticsfrom reports filed from January through September with its National FraudInformation Center/Internet Fraud Watch (NFIC/IFW) programs.Its report provides a snapshot of scams that are flourishing on the Web.The Net auction industry, for example, has created its own breed of e-con artist, looking to capitalize on the millions of transactions that occur each day. Net auction fraud continues to spark the … [Read more...] about Report: Net Fraud Costs Mounting