Working in Tech

Best practices, new technology and products, and tips to help you stay on the cutting edge.

How Amazon’s Smartphone Could Profit Mobile Developers

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If rumors prove correct, Amazon will unveil a smartphone at a high-profile June 18 event in Seattle. The big question is, why? As pointed out by many a publication over the past few days, numerous companies have plunged into the smartphone space and failed. For every Apple iPhone or Samsung Galaxy S that achieves blockbuster sales and critical acclaim, another dozen fade from the market after leaving barely a ripple in the popular consciousness. If Amazon launches a smartphone, pouring… continue…

4 Ways to Debug Application Crashes

Magnifying Code
Among the worst things that can happen to an application developer is having their software crash at a customer’s location—and having the customer on the phone to them, screaming. So how do you prepare against such an eventuality? In this article I’ll look at a few things you can do to be ready when–not if–something goes wrong, whether it’s hardware failure, a disk crash or someone pulling out a power cable and corrupting a disk. Actually, if you can deal… continue…

Tesla Open-Sources Its Patents

Posted In Working in Tech
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Most tech companies devote considerable time, money, and effort to enforcing their patents. Tesla CEO Elon Musk has decided to buck that longtime tradition by opening up his company’s electric-car patents to the world. In a corporate blog posting, Musk framed the gesture in altruistic terms. “We believe that Tesla, other companies making electric cars, and the world would all benefit from a common, rapidly-evolving technology platform,” he wrote. “Technology leadership is not defined by patents, which history has repeatedly… continue…

Is Your Business Ready for Wearable Tech?

Salesforce Wear
Salesforce has announced Salesforce Wear, which it bills as an initiative for “wearable computing in the enterprise.” In theory, the platform will allow developers to build enterprise-centric applications for a variety of wearable devices, including the Samsung Gear (a smartwatch), Android Wear, and Google Glass. (A full list is available here.) Salesforce’s motive here seems pretty obvious: By releasing an enterprise-centric development kit for wearable electronics—one that focuses on Salesforce software, no less—it can gain a head start on what… continue…

HP’s The Machine Could Crush Big Data Problems

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Big Data is only getting bigger: Over the next several years, it’s probable—if not outright inevitable—that businesses will find themselves faced with the need to crunch billions (maybe even trillions) of records, analyze increasingly massive datasets (often in a matter of seconds or minutes) and transmit that data around the world. Tech firms are already working on solutions to address Bigger Data: SAP, IBM and Oracle, for example, have all announced in-memory technology designed to greatly speed up analytics. The… continue…

Apple’s iOS Maps and the High Cost of Management Failure

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In 2012, Apple abandoned its longtime reliance on Google’s mapping data to power its iOS Maps app, opting instead to go with data collected and curated in-house. The result was an epic disaster, with iOS users complaining that the new data was highly inaccurate. As Apple rushed to repair the damage, CEO Tim Cook even posted a public apology on the company’s website: “With the launch of our new Maps last week, we fell short on this commitment. We are… continue…

Tetris’s Long History Offers Tips for New Game Developers

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When the iconic video game Tetris turned 30 last week, Time published an interview with its developer, Alexey Pajitnov, in which he described the challenges of publishing software in the last years of the Soviet Union. Exporting the game out of Russia required a “formal arrangement” with the Computer Center of the Soviet Academy of Sciences that gave the organization the rights to the software for a full decade. “It was easier and wiser for me to allow this arrangement… continue…

How to Apply BA Skills to Business Process Management

Business Process Management
If you’re a business analyst with experience in variations of process improvements, you might want to consider a changeover to business process management. Working in BPM provides you with a deeper understanding of business domains and can be viewed as a solid background for development into a department or operations leader, or an executive or consultant. Let’s look at the roles of BA and BPM, compare and contrast them, and highlight how a BA can enter the field of process… continue…

A First Look at Apple’s Swift Programming Language

Posted In Working in Tech
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As expected, Apple executives spent the first day of the company’s Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) unveiling iOS 8 and Mac OS X “Yosemite,” the newest versions of operating systems for iOS mobile devices and Macs. But the announcement that earned arguably the biggest response from the audience (and the tech media at large) came near the end, and it involved something that 99 percent of consumers probably won’t care about: a new programming language, Swift. For many years, Apple-centric developers… continue…

3 Conundrums for the Internet of Things

Connected Home
As the Internet of Things expands its reach, the range of technologies being used to build and support it is expanding, as well. Languages including Java, Ruby and C are being employed, as are platforms like Microsoft’s Windows Embedded, Android, BlackBerry QNX and the relatively new Tizen. Cloud technologies are being put to use for connect devices, data and users. “You’ll see a whole bunch of technologies, not just programming languages,” Jnan Dash, senior advisor at MongoDB, told InfoWorld. “Data… continue…