Harvard Phases Out Office Landlines. Is Your Workplace Next?

When HarvardX set up new offices, they didn’t get landlines.  Not sure why any of us need landlines anymore….  “Nothing says “dragging education into the 21st century” quite like abandoning technologies of old. And, like it or not, your landline is quickly becoming about as pragmatic as the Pony Express.”

via Harvard Phases Out Office Landlines. Is Your Workplace Next? | Big Think | IdeaFeed.

11 Reasons Email Is the Worst

Most people who use social media of some sort have figured out that the best way to reach someone is via the place they spend the most time.  Send a tweet, FB message, or text and you are much more likely of getting a response than in email.  But email is unavoidable.  This article from Gizmodo is funny and all-too-accurate.  “Email is one of those things that’s just a part of your life, period. Most of us know someone who has closed their Facebook account or refused to join in the first place in a little foot-stomping stand by their ego, and you might even know someone who is thrilled with themselves for not owning a smartphone.”

via 11 Reasons Email Is the Worst.

A Step-by-Step Guide to Hosting or Joining a Twitter Chat

Twitter chats, or using the hashtags for Twitter chats, is an invaluable resource for finding what you’re looking for in what can seem to be a disorienting environment.  New Twitter users often don’t know where to start, and the stream of comments seems overwhelming.  Finding a chat that suits interests is one way to find direction.  This is from TNW.  “Whether you’re a Twitter pro or newer to the network, whether you plan to host your own chat or if you look forward to participating in others, a bit of advance preparation could help. Here’s what we’ve discovered so far to help you make the most of Twitter chats.”

via A Step-by-Step Guide to Hosting or Joining a Twitter Chat.

Who invented the ice bucket challenge?

Who hasn’t been wondering?  Slate did an investigation.

“People have been getting wet and cold for charity for a very long time. “Polar bear plunges,” in which people willingly fling themselves into frigid bodies of water, are held all around the world, with Boston’s annual event dating back to at least 1904. There’s also a proud tradition of dumping buckets of liquid on people’s heads, with the Gatorade shower emerging as a canonical NFL celebration sometime in the mid-1980s.So, who thought to combine charitable coldness with bucket-enabled dousing? Settle in, because this is a circuitous tale.In his Aug. 12 Slate piece, Oremus says the challenge “came from a dare that was circulating among a group of pro athletes, including golfer Greg Norman and motorcycle racer Jeremy McGrath.” Indeed, pro golfers were pouring cold water all over themselves back in June. The Golf Channel’s Jason Sobel explains that Chris Kennedy, a golfer on a minor-league circuit in Florida, was the first, on July 14, to focus the freezing fundraiser on ALS research.”

via Who invented the ice bucket challenge? A Slate investigation..

With New Delivery Service, Uber Declares War on Google and Amazon

This is not a surprise – we have Uber for families and UberX and Ubers with WiFi – now they can take advantage of this network for package delivery.  Uber is disrupting things we could never imagine it would disrupt – who would have thought the share economy would grow as it has.    “Uber is already an expert in getting you from door-to-door. Now, the company wants to figure out how to deliver stuff to your door as well.”  From Wired Magazine.

via With New Delivery Service, Uber Declares War on Google and Amazon | Business | WIRED.

How to Easily Convert a YouTube Clip Into a GIF

This is so easy, and fun to do.  You can make any video from YouTube into a GIF easily.  This is from Wired, but lately has been posted everywhere.  I expect a huge influx of new GIFs.  “From animated steampunk stills to mind-bending visual warps, the GIF is charming, efficient, and highly entertaining. Thus, we were super excited to learn a trick that lets you easily convert a YouTube video into a GIF.All you have to do is go to the GIFable YouTube video of your choosing, then add “gif” in front of the URL, sohttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FNf-IGmxElIa video of a tiny hamster eating a pizza becomeshttps://www.gifyoutube.com/watch?v=FNf-IGmxElI.From there, you’re taken to the gifYouTube site, where you can select a start time for your GIF from the original video and then select the duration of the GIF from 1 to 10 seconds. Click to make the GIF, and boom, you’ve got a loop you can enjoy for yourself, or share with all your friends.’

via How to Easily Convert a YouTube Clip Into a GIF | Gadget Lab | WIRED.

iPhone 6: A Big Screen Is Nice, But The Bigger Battery Is Necessary

The holy grail of better portable consumer electronics has always been the battery, but somehow they never seem to get any better.  This article from Forbes points out that in the new iPhone, available internal real estate along means we will have bigger batteries.  “But aside from the obvious benefits of a bigger screen — better video, more fun gaming, easier reading, et al. — a more subtle benefit comes from merely having a larger phone. Because the other internal components don’t need to grow in size, there is more room for a larger battery inside.”

via iPhone 6: A Big Screen Is Nice, But The Bigger Battery Is Necessary.