Entrepreneur Magazine

Entrepreneur magazine wrote an article on what they recommend people do in order to become more productive. Now, in a nutshell, they recommend that we (1) cut out the phone and email first thing in the morning, (2) work in time blocks throughout the day, and (3) take advantage of breaks or break periods as well. While these might seem like obvious things to do, it would surprise you to know how few of us will be able to follow these simple recommendations. Take the first one, for example. How often, in the mornings, have you looked at your smartphone before even getting out of bed? How long does it take you to get your day started before the temptation of checking your phone for emails or text messages arises? For me, I know that that used to be the very first thing I did each morning and the very last thing I did at night, before closing my eyes. It took nearly six months to break myself from that habit, and I still catch myself struggling with the phone before going to bed at night. (I’ve always been a morning person, so getting up and getting going comes naturally to me. My cell phone will simply not be the reason why I start my day late!) Perhaps it’s easier for you to give up the email and phone urge first thing in the morning and late at night, than it was for me. Or perhaps you might have trouble with that suggestion but find it easier to implement the other recommendations. To read Entrepreneur’s article, visit 3 Simple But Proven Ways to Become More Productive. May the productivity force be with you!

– Marianna
Thank you for visiting my Perfect-Imperfectionz blog, offering a daily dose of inspiration, motivation, and awesome book reviews! Please come again.


Fortune Logo

Attention coffee afficionados! As if you needed another reason to love Starbucks (or coffee for that matter), the company has recently reported that it’s offering two new specialty drinks “made from beans aged in whiskey barrels.” One of the new drinks is a “cold brew sweetened with vanilla syrup” and the other is a “hot con creme drink that is topped with cascara sugar and foam.” I don’t know about you but this mix sounds absolutely enticing! For a quick read-up, visit Fortune’s Starbucks is Now Offering Whiskey Barrel-Aged Coffee.

– Marianna
Thank you for visiting my Perfect-Imperfectionz blog, offering a daily dose of inspiration, motivation, and awesome book reviews! Please come again.


In a move that’s sure to keep Microsoft in a bit of a daze, Google recently snagged up all of Microsoft’s Verizon Communications Inc.’s customers and moved them onto Google’s storage cloud and productivity applications (communication tools like Drive, Hangouts, Calenda, Docs, Forms, Slides, Sites, Contacts, and Groups, to name a few). Google’s efforts towards luring customers from larger cloud competitors is its focus for 2017, as it aims to take a bite out of Amazon and Microsoft’s market share and improve its position as the productivity and cloud-based leader in the industry. With a solid reputation for being the highest available cloud provider (without site crashes), large corporations such as Verizon are taking notice and are moving their digital business needs onto Google’s ‘transformational technology’. A technology that is surely offering Google customers a competitive advantage.

– Marianna
Thank you for visiting my Perfect-Imperfectionz blog, offering a daily dose of inspiration, motivation, and awesome book reviews! Please come again.


Since early this year, Twitter has been working hard to tackle account abuse by users who often post potentially offensive material. From curse words to hate speech to nude pictures, Twitter is delving into account censorship with the purpose of cleaning up the content promoted on its platform.

Twitter claims to be improving its website for users by keeping it clean for everyone, and notes that it runs enhancements like these special filters all the time. The problem with the latest scripts is that some accounts are being flagged without triggering the filter while others aren’t even aware that their accounts are being flagged as ‘sensitive’. (See Twitter Might Hide Your Profile from Others and Not Tell You)

The program searches for sensitive content based on pre-determined parameters that continuously run as scripts on its platform. If your account is triggered, it can get a 12-hour time-out period or a 12-hour suspension (if you’re issued a red flag).

Twitter is looking into correcting some of the minor problems that are occuring as a result of the new filter, but for the time being, users need to be aware that they’re content is being reviewed and possible censorship may result.

Very interesting, coming from a provider who is in the business of promoting free speech, no?! Fore more, visit Mashable’s Twitter is Now Marking Entire Profiles as ‘Sensitive’.)

– Marianna
Thank you for visiting my Perfect-Imperfectionz blog, offering a daily dose of inspiration, motivation, and awesome book reviews! Please come again.


FORBES

If you’ve been living under a rock–like me–you might have missed the news that Google purchased YouTube last year (2016) for a cool $1.65 billion. This allowed Google to get into the online video revolution that has taken the internet world by storm. It seems that everyone engages in video-sharing these days so why not take something great like YouTube and turn it into something fantastic? Well it didn’t take Google very long to create something amazing. The birth of YouTube TV (see YouTube’s TV Shows) is answering this call!

Currently, you can watch TV online as part of your cable provider’s paid service–AT&T/DirectTV, Comcast/Verizon, etc. But what if you don’t want to pay for television service and simply want to use online streaming to access videos on-demand and regular cable networks too?  This is where the online video revolution comes in. AT&T’s DirectTV Now offers such a service for over 100 channels, for $45 a month, relieving the consumer from having to pay a heavy price for regular cable access–assuming you’re ok with a limited access to your usual television networks. But Google’s YouTube TV is starting its offering at a cheaper price, $35 a month, with a smaller lineup than DirectTV Now (fewer than 100 channels), but it will include 40 providers (from networks like Fox, ABC, CBS, and NBC), regional sports, and a few dozen cable channels. It hasn’t signed deals yet with premium networks like HBO, Showtime, and such, but it’s only a matter of time before everyone gets on board.

To sweeten the deal for consumers, Google will offer consumers unlimited cloud DVR and an “AI-powered search and recommendation system.” With a billion (yes, a billion) video clips being watched or uploaded on YouTube each day, it is no surprise that Google scooped up YouTube right away! Its vision of endless online streaming opportunities is definitely an exciting one. Soon we’ll all have access to every current television lineup that exists through our cable channels, but on an online platform. I know that I’m particularly excited about being able to stream all current television-channels online, for much cheaper price than what I currently pay with AT&T’s DirectTV. For more information on this exciting new service, visit How Google’s YouTube TV Will Compete with DirectTV Now.

– Marianna
Thank you for visiting my Perfect-Imperfectionz blog, offering a daily dose of inspiration, motivation, and awesome book reviews! Please come again.


Appy Geek logo

Watch out Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hulu, there’s a slew of competition in the market that’ll soon be eating away at your profit margins! These three online giants may be enjoying membership revenue that grants consumers access to a heavy list of movies and television programs, but did you know that there are a handful of trustworthy sites out there that offer all of this for free?! Appy Geek is reporting on those online services that offer “totally free and totally legal” movies that you can watch online. From common ones like Hoopla and YouTube to less common ones like Tubi TV and Internet Archive, many of these sites support a multitude of platforms including game consoles and major streaming devices; some even offer accessibility for smart TVs. So “what’s the catch?” you might ask. The down sides are minimum: you may not have access to the latest Hollywood movies or television network shows, and you may have to endure sitting through commercials and advertising (afterall, they have to pay the bills somehow), but this is one situation in which you get more benefits than drawbacks. For a list of these online service providers, visit 6 Ways to Watch Movies Online for Free.

– Marianna
Thank you for visiting my Perfect-Imperfectionz blog, offering a daily dose of inspiration, motivation, and awesome book reviews! Please come again.


MarketWatch - WSJ

Starting on March 3rd, every Chevy owner can get unlimited 4G data, including OnStar WiFi Hotspot, for a prepaid $20 a month. According to an Engadget article on the topic, “Chevy gets its data from AT&T, which rolled out its own unlimited plan last month, then tweaked it with free tethering and video streaming options…” The Wall Street Journal’s MarketWatch reported a 200% increase in data use between 2015 and 2016, as much data as the prior two years combined! So with this type of response and demand from its consumers, its no wonder that Chevy took notice. Yet they took this information a step further and became innovators in the industry for understanding their customers and offering something that most other manufacturers had yet to do. So far, Cadillac is the only other auto maker getting into the unlimited data market, with a similar program called Book by Cadillac. I wouldn’t be surprised if both of these auto makers experienced skyrocketing sales as a result, further encouraging others to follow suit! For more details, visit the Wall Street Journal’s Market Watch article Chevy Now Offers Unlimited Data Plan for its Connected Cars.

– Marianna
Thank you for visiting my Perfect-Imperfectionz blog, offering a daily dose of inspiration, motivation, and awesome book reviews! Please come again.


NASA Logo

If you’re a technology, gaming, or space-age junkie, you’re gonna love NASA’s latest release of its 2017-2018 Software Catalog. Featuring a fluid simulation program, NASA propulsion codes, and tools used in designing the Space Launch System (among many other cool releases), there’s bound to be something of interest for everyone! What’s even better is that the public has free access to the latest software products for a variety of technical applications. It is NASA’s way of “supporting the innovation economy by granting access to tools used by today’s top aerospace professionals to entrepreneurs, small businesses, academia and industry” says Steve Jurczyk, associate administrator for NASA’s Space Technology Mission Directorate (STMD) in Washington. “Access to these software codes has the potential generate tangible benefits that create American jobs, earn revenue and save lives.” For more information visit NASA Software‘s article or the direct link to everything NASA Software and enjoy your findings!

– Marianna
Thank you for visiting my Perfect-Imperfectionz blog, offering a daily dose of inspiration, motivation, and awesome book reviews! Please come again.


The Verge logo

Each year in March, schools across the country honor National Reading Day and encourage kids of all ages to pick up a book and read. Usually celebrated around March 2, Dr. Seuss’s birthday, schools engage children in fun activities and events that piques their mind and promotes curiosity for everything literature. Adults have been celebrating this movement for years as well, which has grown to a full-long month of reading, called National Reading Month. In honor of this movement, The Verge compiled the 23 Science-Fiction and Fantasy Novels to Read This Month. If you’re an avid reader and book lover like me, you’ll definitely want to check out quite a few of these titles!

– Marianna
Thank you for visiting my Perfect-Imperfectionz blog, offering a daily dose of inspiration, motivation, and awesome book reviews! Please come again.


The Verge logoSleep deprivation, what an epidemic this has become! We all know how important it is to get our zzz’s. But it’s not enough to just get some sleep. We need restful sleep in order for our body to regenerate itself and heal from many ailments. The CDC has published numerous articles on how sleep deprivation affects your body’s ability to regulate blood sugar, blood pressure, weight, and more. Chronic sleep deprivation, which is considered your constant inability to get restful sleep, can lead to health problems like heart disease, diabetes, depression, anxiety, hypertension, and obesity. Aside from being unhealthy for you, sleep deprivation is also dangerous. Sleep insufficiency has been linked to motor vehicle accidents, on-the-job accidents, and medical errors. But what can we do to help ourselves overcome this problem?

How does our job influence our sleep? Well, the work that we do directly affects our sleep, this, according to the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. The Verge published an article identifying the jobs that cause people the most sleep deprivation and those that cause the least. For starters, it’s no surprise that “airline pilots and religious workers tend to get the most sleep.” But jobs that require people to work at odd hours throws off the body’s internal clock, which leads to “less, poorer quality, sleep.” These include factory jobs, health care, food preparation, and emergency services jobs as well.

So how much sleep do we really need? The CDC reports that “school-age children need at least 10 hours of sleep daily, teens need 9-10 hours, and adults need 7-8 hours.” (See Insufficient Sleep is a Public Health Problem.) What can we do to establish healthy sleeping habits? The CDC recommends four things:

1- Go to bed at the same time each night and rise at the same time each morning
2- Avoid large meals before bedtime
3- Avoid caffeine and alcohol close to bedtime
4- Avoid nicotine

With these tips in mind and a healthy lifestyle consisting of healthy eating and a solid exercise regimen, we can significantly improve our sleeping habits and have a better way of life. Easier said than done, right? Let’s give it a try, afterall, we only have our life to lose! For more information, visit Your Job Could Be Costing You Sleep.

Marianna
Thank you for visiting Perfect-Imperfectionz – a personal blog offering a dose of inspiration, motivation, and awesome book reviews!


The time has come! Amazon, my favorite online retailer (hands-down), is carving its way into the food delivery scene! Although it’s just begun to offer restaurant delivery services in the DC area, I’m hopeful that it will do extremely well and soon enough, roll out a service across major cities in the country. Imagine a world where drivers from Amazon–a well-trusted brand–deliver deliciously prepared food to anxiously awaiting customers, without interruption, fail, or hassle. If their delivery services become as dependable and trusting as their online experience is, then their roll-outs across the country shouldn’t be too far away. One can only dream! Some of you may find this amusing but I can’t help it. I love everything Amazon and am a huge fan (and customer). From purchasing everything I can think of–to save me from having to head to a mall or store–to downloading all my ebooks, I now have something else to look forward to with this company. Can I get an ‘Amen’?! For more information, visit Amazon Prime Offering Restaurant Delivery in DC Area.

Marianna
Thank you for visiting Perfect-Imperfectionz – a personal blog offering a dose of inspiration, motivation, and awesome book reviews!


Euronews Logo

From Euronews and FoneArena: While 4G networks are still being launched around the world, the next generation of mobile networks–the ‘5G’ or fifth generation–is all the rave in the telecommunications industry. 5G is expected to become available in 2020-2022 and is promising increased speeds in excess of 500Mbps (whereas 4G’s network speeds average 25-40Mbps). The potential benefits of 5G are vast for both businesses and consumers. Businesses will benefit from faster speeds that will allow for greater mobile working while consumers stand to benefit from faster download times on their devices. Aside from speed, another benefit to 5G is grFone Arena logeater capacity for data allowances from cell phone providers as there will no longer be such a strangle hold on capacity as currently exists with a 4G network. The 5G capacity is expected to be over 1,000 times greater than 4G, making data allowances nearly a thing of the past. There will also be reduced latency, or the amount of time required for data transfer to take place, thereby allowing consumers to enjoy a much shorter buffering period when streaming a video, opening a web page, video game, or other internet-based activity. 5G seems to offer many benefits to both businesses and consumers and is expected to connect an even greater amount to people to the world around us. For more on this article visit Euronews’s Our 5G Future – Fater, More Connected, But Still Years Away and 5G-What Is It? What Are the Benefits? When Will It Launch?

– Marianna
Thank you for visiting my Perfect-Imperfectionz blog, offering a daily dose of inspiration, motivation, and awesome book reviews! Please come again.


The Hacker News

How often do you turn off the WiFi setting on your smartphone? Is your find open hotspot feature turned on all the time? The Hacker News put a notorious hacker at work, to demonstrate just how easy it is to steal people’s personal information. The hack goes like this: someone creates an EvilAP (or malicious access point) which serves as a hotspot for your phone. The access point is picked up by your smartphone–believing that it is an open network–and connects automatically to that hotspot. Once connected, the hacker can use one of a myriad of hacking programs to download your information, including passwords to your most visited sites, bank account information, credit card information, personal information (address, telephone number, social security number, etc.) and more. With this information on hand, who’s to say what it will be used for or how many people will have access to it?

How does someone protect themselves against this possibility? Well, for starters, you should understand that you really can’t protect yourself from every possible intrusion scenario, but you can make it harder for a hacker to steal your information. Among the things you can do is disable your ‘hotspot’ finder from your smartphone and further disable the WiFi service when you’re at home, the office, or when it’s not in use. When at work, it would be better to secure your network access by getting onto your job’s secure network, but keep in mind that even that network can be susceptible to a breach. Be sure to change your passwords often and make them lengthy to make it more difficult for someone to decipher. Another (and very important) suggestion is to stay away from ‘open networks’ such as the type you’d find at coffee shops, shopping malls, and the like. These open networks are invitations to have your information stolen as you’re already sharing the network with total strangers. So what’s to prevent a hacker from running a program that downloads your and others’ information?

In our interconnected society, it is very important to remain vigilant of the opportunities that exist to steal valuable information, and correspondingly, your identity. For a video showing the hacker at work and for more about this topic, visit Hacker Shows How Easy it is to Hack People While Walking Around in Public.

– Marianna
Thank you for visiting my Perfect-Imperfectionz blog, offering a daily dose of inspiration, motivation, and awesome book reviews! Please come again.


Android Police Logo

Quick post: If you’re an avid user of Google Docs, great news! Google just rolled out its cool notes-type feature and made it part of Docs. So say you’re typing a document on its Word-equivalent application, you now have access to type notes while you work and integrate them into your document at a later time without losing your train of thought. Your notes can be individually saved on the sidebar while you work and later appended to the document through simple drag and drop functionality. To see how this feature works, visit Android Police‘s article Google Integrates Keep with Docs for Easy Access to Your Notes.

– Marianna
Thank you for visiting my Perfect-Imperfectionz blog, offering a daily dose of inspiration, motivation, and awesome book reviews! Please come again.


How Nutrition Logo

Garlic, that deliciously smelly vegetable, has been around for several thousand years and is widely used as both a food flavoring and traditional medicine by people everywhere. Grown underground, it is very easy to grow and can be grown year-around. It is a hardy plant and is not easily susceptible to pests or diseases, making it easy to grow at home, if desired.

Among the most delicious uses of this herb includes an flavorful infusion for oils, dipping sauces, and for general cooking many typical cuisines from around the world. It is an extremely healthy vegetable to include as part of your diet and is rich is vitamins, minerals, and other healthy benefits: rich in vitamin B6, C, and minerals such as calcium, iron, zinc, and others. Among other health benefits, garlic has been shown to reduce cardiovascular disease, the chances of developing some forms of cancer, support the body’s detox processes, and serve as an antiviral, antifungal, and antibacterial agent. Other, less knows uses include serving as an adhesive in mending glass and porcelain and as an insecticide to control the cabbage root fly and red mite in poultry!

For more information about this wonderfully delicious, and highly beneficial and versatile herb, visit How Nutrition’s Garlic: 7 Proven Health & Therapeutic Benefits.

Sources:
Garlic. March, 2017. Wikipedia www.wikipedia.com.

Garlic. March, 2017. WebMd www.webmd.com.

Garlic. March, 2017. World’s Healthiest Foods www.whfoods.com.

 

– Marianna
Thank you for visiting my Perfect-Imperfectionz blog, offering a daily dose of inspiration, motivation, and awesome book reviews! Please come again.


Singapore, a beautiful metropolis city-state with a unique vision that balances the beauty of green living with the need for housing its highly-dense population,is known as the Garden City for a reason. With a total land size equivalent to half of metropolitan London and a population just over 5.5 million, it’s no wonder that their need to strike a balance between housing and nature is so important. And they’ve done a marvelous job at doing so.

Every newNational Geographic construction project is required to have green roofs, cascading vertical gardens, verdant walls, ample exercise and outdoor spaces; all to encourage greener and sustainable living. Perhaps one of the greater merits of Singapore is that everyone, from the richest to the most economically disadvantaged citizens, gets gets to enjoy green living. Public housing developments emphasize “community-centric towns and amenities such as ‘skyrise’ gardens and rooftop gyms.” With more than 90 percent of Singaporeans owning their own homes, it proudly has one of the highest home-ownership rates in the world.

Its model of livable density aims to create a fantastic quality of life despite having a highly-dense population. The proximity between shops, schools, transportation centers, and the outdoors is extremely convenient and enjoyed by all who live and visit there. Singapore’s innovation is showing no signs of stopping. With future developments incorporating freshwater reservoirs, a new project planned to connect all parks in the city-state through a network of transportation centers, and the creation of what they call Smart Work Centres–shared work spaces for employees from different companies–the work-life balance they’re striking is commendable and enviable. If only more countries adopted this vision, what a beautiful world we would find ourselves enjoying!

For more about this wonderful city and some impressive pictures, visit How One of the World’s Densest Cities Has Gone Green.

– Marianna
Thank you for visiting my Perfect-Imperfectionz blog, offering a daily dose of inspiration, motivation, and awesome book reviews! Please come again.


Reviewed Logo

Smart plugs allow us to enable and disable power outlets remotely from any smartphone app, on a schedule, and even with Amazon’s Alexa. Wi-Fi smart plugs have been around for a while but they are getting smaller and better at covering up only a single outlet. Reviewed.com has published an article on how smart home technology has taken off over the past few years and how these smart plug devices are getting cheaper too. They put ten of the best smart plugs on the market today, through rigorous tests and came up with recommendations on which ones to use and stay away from.

If you’re into smart home technology or are just starting to get into it, you will definitely benefit from this list of reviews. Check out Reviewed.com’s The Best Smart Plugs of 2017 for more!

– Marianna
Thank you for visiting my Perfect-Imperfectionz blog, offering a daily dose of inspiration, motivation, and awesome book reviews! Please come again.


PC Mag

I know that not everyone is a computer junky or software developer or hardware master. So I decided to find a post on something that can easily introduce one of the most frequently used technology terms today: cloud computing. So what is the cloud, really? What does it mean when we say cloud computing or cloud sharing? PC Magazine wrote a nice article in 2016 explaining these terms and how we have been using the cloud for a couple of decades now.

In short, the cloud itself is a storage area (at a remote location that is not our local device) in cyberspace where we place files, videos, and other information that we create, with the ability to access it from anywhere in the world. Google Drive, iCloud, and DropBox are some of the more popular cloud services used today.

Cloud computing is simply the global infrastructure side of things that allows companies to pool resources (servers and data centers) so we (the Internet users) can store files in one place and access them in another. This means that our laptops, smartphones, or other peripherals can work less like a standalone computer or device and instead, benefit from network access (WIFI, high-speed internet for example) which does the storing for you.

There are security and privacy concerns with relying on cloud technology for personal or business use. When you use the cloud, your files slide across the Internet wire and then live on a physical server–usually more than one since cloud computing pools resources–in some (or many) places. This means that your work is now in the hands of corporations who own the servers and data centers that allow this technology to work. Google Drive, iCloud, and Dropbox typically don’t charge for basic cloud storage. However, if you pay a membership fee to benefit from a corporation’s cloud computing power (say you need larger cloud storage capabilities), then your material is now in the hands of that corporation. And depending on that company’s terms of service, you may or may not own or control your data.

Let’s face it: the cloud is convenient. It has made life easier by allowing us to place material in cyberspace so we can access it from anywhere in the world. It is not without controversy and concerns. So the next time you upload something to Google Drive, iCloud, DropBox, or any other cloud service provider, remember that your information is no longer yours. If you’re willing to give up that power, then welcome to the world of cloud computing!

For more information visit PC Magazine’s What is Cloud Computing?

– Marianna
Thank you for visiting my Perfect-Imperfectionz blog, offering a daily dose of inspiration, motivation, and awesome book reviews! Please come again.


WIRED Logo

Everything seems to be moving in the right direction when it comes to the planning and preparation for autonomous vehicles in our society. In keeping with the latest technological advancements of self-driving cars, Wired is reporting the exciting new design of a passenger car that will take car ownership and ride-sharing to a new level.

Design firm Ideo has purposed an automotive design which “places the car at the center of a new marketplace” whereby owners of future autonomous vehicles will be able to choose between offering their vehicle for ride-sharing, car-sharing, or leave it for private use. Car manufacturers like Ford and Lincoln are taking notice and are working with Ideo on some creative designs.

Among the features being considered is a modal experience that allows car-riders to define a more personalized experience for themselves by choosing between a social mode (open experience) or private mode (which blocks out noise from other passengers). Concepts like these fill the future with possibilities of a unique and exciting future! For the full article visit A Fascinating Glimpse at How We’ll Carpool in 2017.

– Marianna
Thank you for visiting my Perfect-Imperfectionz blog, offering a daily dose of inspiration, motivation, and awesome book reviews! Please come again.


USA Today

As if we needed more of a reason to eat right, exercise, and stay healthy, USA Today is now reporting about an alarming study conducted by the American Cancer Society, confirming the rising rate of colon and rectal cancers among Millenials and Generation Xers. There is no exact cause at the moment but “obesity, inactivity, and poor diets” are the prime suspects.

Screenings for colon and rectal cancer is reserved for adults 50 and older, and younger persons who have a family history of such cancers. Right now, there is no plan to recommend screening for those under 50 years of age. So what can you do? Well, the symptoms include bloody stools, cramps, unexplained weight loss and changes in bowel habits, among others.  About the only thing we can do to stay healthy is to live a healthier life. Eat right. Eat more balanced and less processed foods. Exercise daily–even if it’s 30 minutes a day. And I’m not ruling out drinking plenty of water and taking our vitamins too.

For more about this alarming report visit Colon and Rectal Cancers Surge Among Millenials and Generation X.

USA TODAY 022817-cancer-study

 

– Marianna
Thank you for visiting my Perfect-Imperfectionz blog, offering a daily dose of inspiration, motivation, and awesome book reviews! Please come again.