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Thursday, July 12, 2018

Pointy vs Amazon

Pointy raises $12M Series B to help bricks and mortar retailers fight Amazon

Pointy-70
Pointy​,​ the​ ​startup​ ​that​ offers tech to help ​bricks and mortar​ ​retailers, put their stock online so that it can be discovered via search engines, has picked up $12 million in new funding. The Series B round is led by Polaris Partners and Vulcan Capital, and brings total funding for the Irish company to $19 million.
Founded on the premise that people often resort to e-commerce behemoths like Amazon because they can’t find the same item locally, Pointy has developed a hardware and cloud software solution that makes it easy to create a bespoke website as means of making local stock discoverable online. Specifically, the ​”Pointy​ ​box”​ hardware ​gadget connects to a store’s barcode scanner and automatically puts scanned items on a Pointy-powered website for the store.
Store pages are then optimised for search engines, so that when you search for products locally — say your favourite artisan beer — a Pointy-powered result shows up and encourages you to visit the store and make a purchase. In other words, this is about helping local retailers drive more footfall, but with very little additional overhead.
Pointy CEO and co-founder Mark Cummins says the Series B round will be used by the startup to accelerate growth and build on increased uptake by U.S. retailers. It currently counts 5,500 retailers using Pointy in total, with 70 percent from the U.S, and the remaining in Canada, U.K. and Ireland. “To put the U.S. number in context, just under 1 in 200 U.S retailers is now using Pointy,” a company spokesperson tells me.
Since we last covered Pointy, it has extended its reach considerably via partnerships with Lightspeed, Clover and Square, which allows retailers using these POS systems to use the Pointy platform for free because it doesn’t require the purchase of the $499 Pointy device. The startup has also partnered with Google via the search giant’s new See What’s In Store (SWIS) program so that shoppers can discover what a store sells within Google’s search and maps pages.
“For all the hype around e-commerce and the media narrative of ‘Retail Apocalypse’, people still make the vast majority of their purchases in local stores,” adds Cummins in a statement. “But local retailers have lost out in not having their products visible online — we solve that problem for them”.
Meanwhile, Pointy’s previous backers include Draper Associates, Frontline Ventures, and notable angel investors such as Matt Mullenweg (founder of WordPress), Lars Rasmussen (co-founder of Google Maps), Taavet Hinrikus (co-founder of TransferWise), and Michael Birch (co-founder of Bebo).

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Monday, May 7, 2018

Alternatives to Einstein’s Theory

Troubled Times for Alternatives to Einstein’s Theory of Gravity

Two white dwarfs and a pulsar orbit one another in a system that reveals how gravity behaves in extreme environments.
Eric Nyquist/Quanta Magazine

Quanta Magazine


author photo
About
Original story reprinted with permission from Quanta Magazine, an editorially independent publication of the Simons Foundation whose mission is to enhance public understanding of science by covering research developments and trends in mathematics and the physical and life sciences.
Zumalacárregui, a theoretical physicist at the Berkeley Center for Cosmological Physics, had been studying how the discovery of a neutron-star collision would affect so-called “alternative” theories of gravity. These theories attempt to overcome what many researchers consider to be two enormous problems with our understanding of the universe. Observations going back decades have shown that the universe appears to be filled with unseen particles—dark matter—as well as an anti-gravitational force called dark energy. Alternative theories of gravity attempt to eliminate the need for these phantasms by modifying the force of gravity in such a way that it properly describes all known observations—no dark stuff required.
At the meeting, Zumalacárregui joked to his audience about the perils of combining science and Twitter, and then explained what the consequences would be if the rumors were true. Many researchers knew that the merger would be a big deal, but a lot of them simply “hadn’t understood their theories were on the brink of demise,” he later wrote in an email. In Saclay, he read them the last rites. “That conference was like a funeral where we were breaking the news to some attendees.”
The neutron-star collision was just the beginning. New data in the months since that discovery have made life increasingly difficult for the proponents of many of the modified-gravity theories that remain. Astronomers have analyzed extreme astronomical systems that contain spinning neutron stars, or pulsars, to look for discrepancies between their motion and the predictions of general relativity—discrepancies that some theories of alternative gravity anticipate. These pulsar systems let astronomers probe gravity on a new scale and with new precision. And with each new observation, these alternative theories of gravity are having an increasingly hard time solving the problems they were invented for. Researchers “have to sweat some more trying to get new physics,” said Anne Archibald, an astrophysicist at the University of Amsterdam.

Searching for Vulcan

Confounding observations have a way of leading astronomers to desperate explanations. On the afternoon of March 26, 1859, Edmond Lescarbault, a young doctor and amateur astronomer in Orgères-en-Beauce, a small village south of Paris, had a break between patients. He rushed to a tiny homemade observatory on the roof of his stone barn. With the help of his telescope, he spotted an unknown round object moving across the face of the sun.
He quickly sent news of this discovery to Urbain Le Verrier, the world’s leading astronomer at the time. Le Verrier had been trying to account for an oddity in the movement of the planet Mercury. All other planets orbit the sun in perfect accord with Isaac Newton’s laws of motion and gravitation, but Mercury appeared to advance a tiny amount with each orbit, a phenomenon known as perihelion precession. Le Verrier was certain that there had to be an invisible “dark” planet tugging on Mercury. Lescarbault’s observation of a dark spot transiting the sun appeared to show that the planet, which Le Verrier named Vulcan, was real.
It was not. Lescarbault’s sightings were never confirmed, and the perihelion precession of Mercury remained a puzzle for nearly six more decades. Then Einstein developed his theory of general relativity, which straightforwardly predicted that Mercury should behave the way it does.
A map of the solar system from 1846 shows the presumed orbit of Vulcan, a hypothetical planet that was invoked to explain a puzzling feature of Mercury’s orbit.
In Le Verrier’s impulse to explain puzzling observations by introducing a heretofore hidden object, some modern-day researchers see parallels to the story of dark matter and dark energy. For decades, astronomers have noticed that the behavior of galaxies and galaxy clusters doesn’t seem to fit the predictions of general relativity. Dark matter is one way to explain that behavior. Likewise, the accelerating expansion of the universe can be thought of as being powered by a dark energy.
All attempts to directly detect dark matter and dark energy have failed, however. That fact “kind of leaves a bad taste in some people’s mouths, almost like the fictional planet Vulcan,” said Leo Stein, a theoretical physicist at the California Institute of Technology. “Maybe we’re going about it all wrong?”
For any alternative theory of gravity to work, it has to not only do away with dark matter and dark energy, but also reproduce the predictions of general relativity in all the standard contexts. “The business of alternative gravity theories is a messy one,” Archibald said. Some would-be replacements for general relativity, like string theory and loop quantum gravity, don’t offer testable predictions. Others “make predictions that are spectacularly wrong, so the theorists have to devise some kind of a screening mechanism to hide the wrong prediction on scales we can actually test,” she said.
The best-known alternative gravity theories are known as modified Newtonian dynamics, commonly abbreviated to MOND. MOND-type theories attempt to do away with dark matter by tweaking our definition of gravity. Astronomers have long observed that the gravitational force due to ordinary matter doesn’t appear to be sufficient to keep rapidly moving stars inside their galaxies. The gravitational pull of dark matter is assumed to make up the difference. But according to MOND, there are simply two kinds of gravity. In regions where the force of gravity is strong, bodies obey Newton’s law of gravity, which states that the gravitational force between two objects decreases in proportion to the square of the distance that separates them. But in environments of extremely weak gravity—like the outer parts of a galaxy—MOND suggests that another type of gravity is in play. This gravity decreases more slowly with distance, which means that it doesn’t weaken as much. “The idea is to make gravity stronger when it should be weaker, like at the outskirts of a galaxy,” Zumalacárregui said.
Lucy Reading-Ikkanda/Quanta Magazine
Then there is TeVeS (tensor-vector-scalar), MOND’s relativistic cousin. While MOND is a modification of Newtonian gravity, TeVeS is an attempt to take the general idea of MOND and make it into a full mathematical theory that can be applied to the universe as a whole—not just to relatively small objects like solar systems and galaxies. It also explains the rotation curves of galaxies by making gravity stronger on their outskirts. But TeVeS does so by augmenting gravity with “scalar” and “vector” fields that “essentially amplify gravity,” said Fabian Schmidt, a cosmologist at the Max Planck Institute for Astrophysics in Garching, Germany. A scalar field is like the temperature throughout the atmosphere: At every point it has a numerical value but no direction. A vector field, by contrast, is like the wind: It has both a value (the wind speed) and a direction.
There are also so-called Galileon theories—part of a class of theories called Horndeski and beyond-Horndeski—which attempt to get rid of dark energy. These modifications of general relativity also introduce a scalar field. There are many of these theories (Brans-Dicke theory, dilaton theories, chameleon theories and quintessence are just some of them), and their predictions vary wildly among models. But they all change the expansion of the universe and tweak the force of gravity. Horndeski theory was first put forward by Gregory Horndeski in 1974, but the wider physics community took note of it only around 2010. By then, Zumalacárregui said, “Gregory Horndeski [had] quit science and [become] a painter in New Mexico.”
There are also stand-alone theories, like that of physicist Erik Verlinde. According to his theory, the laws of gravity arise naturally from the laws of thermodynamics just like “the way waves emerge from the molecules of water in the ocean,” Zumalacárregui said. Verlinde wrote in an email that his ideas are not an “alternative theory” of gravity, but “the next theory of gravity that contains and transcends Einstein’s general relativity.” But he is still developing his ideas. “My impression is that the theory is still not sufficiently worked out to permit the kind of precision tests we carry out,” Archibald said. It’s built on “fancy words,” Zumalacárregui said, “but no mathematical framework to compute predictions and do solid tests.”
The predictions made by other theories differ in some way from those of general relativity. Yet these differences can be subtle, which makes them incredibly difficult to find.
Consider the neutron-star merger. At the same time that the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) spotted the gravitational waves emanating from the event, the space-based Fermi satellite spotted a gamma ray burst from the same location. The two signals had traveled across the universe for 130 million years before arriving at Earth just 1.7 seconds apart.
These nearly simultaneous observations “brutally and pitilessly murdered” TeVeS theories, said Paulo Freire, an astrophysicist at the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany. “Gravity and gravitational waves propagate at the speed of light, with extremely high precision—which is not at all what was predicted by those [alternative] theories.”
The same fate overtook some Galileon theories that add an extra scalar field to explain the universe’s accelerated expansion. These also predict that gravitational waves propagate more slowly than light. The neutron-star merger killed those off too, Schmidt said.
Further limits come from new pulsar systems. In 2013, Archibald and her colleagues found an unusual triple system: a pulsar and a white dwarf that orbit one another, with a second white dwarf orbiting the pair. These three objects exist in a space smaller than Earth’s orbit around the sun. The tight setting, Archibald said, offers ideal conditions for testing a crucial aspect of general relativity called the strong equivalence principle, which states that very dense strong-gravity objects such as neutron stars or black holes “fall” in the same way when placed in a gravitational field. (On Earth, the more familiar weak equivalence principle states that, if we ignore air resistance, a feather and a brick will fall at the same rate.)
The triple system makes it possible to check whether the pulsar and the inner white dwarf fall exactly the same way in the gravity of the outer white dwarf. Alternative-gravity theories assume that the scalar field generated in the pulsar should bend space-time in a much more extreme way than the white dwarf does. The two wouldn’t fall in a similar manner, leading to a violation of the strong equivalence principle and, with it, general relativity.
Over the past five years, Archibald and her team have recorded 27,000 measurements of the pulsar’s position as it orbits the other two stars. While the project is still a work in progress, it looks as though the results will be in total agreement with Einstein, Archibald said. “We can say that the degree to which the pulsar behaves abnormally is at most a few parts in a million. For an object with such strong gravity to still follow Einstein’s predictions so well, if there is one of these scalar fields, it has to have a really tiny effect.”
The test, which should be published soon, will put the best constraints yet on a whole group of alternative gravity theories, she added. If a theory only works with some additional scalar field, then the field should change the behavior of the pulsar. “We have such sensitive tests of general relativity that they need to somehow hide the theory’s new behavior in the solar system and in pulsar systems like ours,” Archibald said.
The data from another pulsar system dubbed the double pulsar, meanwhile, was originally supposed to eliminate the TeVeS theories. Detected in 2003, the double pulsar was until recently the only binary neutron-star system where both neutron stars were pulsars. Freire and his colleagues have already confirmed that the double pulsar’s behavior is perfectly in line with general relativity. Right before LIGO’s October announcement of a neutron-star merger, the researchers were going to publish a paper that would kill off TeVeS. But LIGO did the job for them, Freire said. “We need not go through that anymore.”

Slippery Survivors

A few theories have survived the LIGO blow—and will probably survive the upcoming pulsar data, Zumalacárregui said. There are some Horndeski and beyond-Horndeski theories that do not change the speed of gravitational waves. Then there are so-called massive gravity theories. Ordinarily, physicists assume that the particle associated with the force of gravity—the graviton—has no mass. In these theories, the graviton has a very small but nonzero mass. The neutron-star merger puts tough limits on these theories, Zumalacárregui said, since a massive graviton would travel more slowly than light. But in some theories the mass is assumed to be extremely small, at least 20 orders of magnitude lower than the neutrino’s, which means that the graviton would still move at nearly the speed of light.
There are a few other less well-known survivors, some of which are important to keep exploring, Archibald said, as long as dark matter and dark energy remain elusive. “Dark energy might be our only observational clue pointing to a new and better theory of gravity—or it might be a mysterious fluid with strange properties, and nothing to do with gravity at all,” she said.
Still, killing off theories is simply how science is supposed to work, argue researchers who have been exploring alternative gravity theories. “This is what we do all the time, put forward a working hypothesis and test it,” said Enrico Barausse of the Astrophysics Institute of Paris, who has worked on MOND-like theories. “99.9 percent of the time you rule out the hypothesis; the remaining 0.1 percent of the time you win the Nobel Prize.”
Zumalacárregui, who has also worked on these theories, was “sad at first” when he realized that the neutron star merger detection had proven Galileon theories wrong, but ultimately “very relieved it happened sooner rather than later,” he said. LIGO had been just about to close down for 18 months to upgrade the detector. “If the event had been a bit later, I would still be working on a wrong theory.”
Anne Archibald, an astronomer at the University of Amsterdam, has been studying the triple system to understand the behavior of gravity.
Cees Bassa
So what’s next for general relativity and modified-gravity theories? “That question keeps me up at night more than I’d like,” Zumalacárregui said. “The good news is that we have narrowed our scope by a lot, and we can try to understand the few survivors much better.”
Schmidt thinks it’s necessary to measure the laws of gravity on large scales as directly as possible, using ongoing and future large galaxy surveys. “For example, we can compare the effect of gravity on light bending as well as galaxy velocities, typically predicted to be different in modified-gravity theories,” he said. Researchers also hope that future telescopes such as the Square Kilometer Array will discover more pulsar systems and provide better accuracy in pulsar timing to further improve gravity tests. And a space-based replacement for LIGO called LISA will study gravitational waves with exquisite accuracy—if indeed it launches as planned in the mid-2030s. “If that does not see any deviations from general relativity, I don’t know what will,” said Barausse.
But many physicists agree that it will take a long time to get rid of most alternative gravity models. Theorists have dozens of alternative gravity theories that could potentially explain dark matter and dark energy, Freire said. Some of these theories can’t make testable predictions, Archibald said, and many “have a parameter, a ‘knob’ you can turn to make them pass any test you like,” she said. But at some point, said Nicolas Yunes, a physicist at Montana State University, “this gets silly and Occam’s razor wins.”
Still, “fundamentally we know that general relativity is wrong,” Stein said. “At the very core there must be some breakdown” at the quantum level. “Maybe we won’t see it from astronomical observations … but we owe it to ourselves, as empirical scientists, to check whether or not our mathematical models are working at these scales.”
Original story reprinted with permission from Quanta Magazine, an editorially independent publication of the Simons Foundation whose mission is to enhance public understanding of science by covering research developments and trends in mathematics and the physical and life sciences."

Sunday, April 29, 2018

Prospecting With Proof Positive!



Five foolproof on line prospecting suggestions to sign up greater people into your commercial enterprise
written with the aid of William Floyd

Prospecting is one of the maximum vital abilities to increase sign ups as a domestic business owner. Without targeted leads or qualified humans to talk to about your commercial enterprise, you won’t get many sign ups. Yet, it is also one of the most feared topics since for most of the people it refers to, getting them out of their comfort region.
Prospecting shouldn't be frightening, even though, it doesn’t have to be hard. in reality, The more you practice this ability and get into a waft with it, you would possibly discover that you definitely enjoy the system.
So permit us to show you stress free ways of prospecting and give a few easy pointers you may begin applying so that you can create higher relationships and sign more people up in your business.

Fear kills many peoples dream. It stops people from taking any action at all  of fulfilling their dreams. that they made-up testimonies in their heads about what would possibly happen or possibly go wrong to keep many from even attempting. But while you honestly think about the worst possible outcome, you may foresee and comprehend it’s not so scary after all.
So what if some people choose to connect with you via their smartphone?  In all honesty, some peoples existence depends on smartphones ? Theirs! No person’s opinion of you should alternate or achieving goals.
Another thing to keep in mind is that as you broaden your prospecting capabilities and practice more, your self assurance will grow also , consequently casting off extra layers of worry and doubt. On every occasion you “live on” any other prospecting verbal exchange, you can take a deep breath and use what you found out from your communication to make your subsequent one even higher!


Ask more (and better) questions
How can you realize if your services or products is a match for someone if you don’t first ask a few questions? That is when you find out if your products or services provide value. Create exceptionally valuable product or service that you are able to provide to your customer or customers. your product is  exceptional and now we are making them for a particular time. Show how your product or service is “absolutely needed by everyone that uses them”. There will nevertheless be masses of people who have no interest in your products or services. This is why asking questions and certainly information about peoples wants and needs is such an critical part of the prospecting puzzle.
Ask questions to show the benefit or benefits of your product or services. You cannot direct anybody in the direction of a purchase that's correct for them till you get them to inform you what they need.” – Tom Hopkins
Ask Questions
At the end of the day, people are going to make their very own shopping  decisions irrespective of how strongly every other person thinks they want some thing. you could help guide them to that selection (if it's a fit) by asking questions that dig deeper and monitor any pain points. If what you have to offer is an answer for that man or woman’s pain point, it will make their selection to shop with you a no brainer!

Detach your self from the outcome
That is a big one! While you first begin your own home commercial enterprise journey and generate some leads, it’s so clean to grow to be emotionally connected to the ones first few people beings signing up. The trouble is in those cases that you enter a prospecting communication with the goal of needing to make the sale, you completely restrict yourself from simply assisting that man or woman.
The fact is most people will say no to your enterprise. Understanding this, you could mentally equip yourself for the journey. In preference to getting disappointed or feeling rejected while a person says they’re no longer involved, simply thank them for the time, wish them well, keep the friendship, and move on. Don’t fear about trying to persuade or show yourself or your commercial enterprise to everybody. You may face heartache if you are too emotionally attached to the consequences.
Rather, cognizance on the procedure of sifting and sorting as you meet an increasing number of people. Via this manner, you may discover that some are a brilliant fit in your commercial enterprise at the same time as others may additionally just be a better in shape as friends. One huge clue in order to will let you recognize if you are being too emotionally attached for your consequences is how you treat a prospect when they let you know no. If you see yourself being harmed by the attachment to engage in that verbal exchange, then you recognize you’ve taken it too individually and went into the communique with the incorrect intentions.
Some other element to keep in mind is that simply due to the fact a person is not fascinated right now doesn’t mean they're not part of your destiny. Nurture the ones relationships as friends even as you continue to build your commercial enterprise. You never understand if somewhere down the road that friendship will blossom right into a super commercial enterprise courting. Preserve your thoughts and heart open.


Practice the regulation of averages
The notable Jim Rohn said, “even in case you are new in income, you could make up in numbers what you lack in competencies.” What this means is that as you're studying and growing those new prospecting capabilities, in reality just communicate to other people. There are absolutely two fundamental blessings to this method.
The primary is that it offers you a ton of practice! The more people you speak to and divulge to them your commercial enterprise or even the greater rejection which you face, the higher you may get. You may analyze a lot out of your conversations, which in turn will create more confidence to your prospecting skills. The greater confidence you have got, the better you'll get with your ability.
Practice is simply as precious as a sale. the sale will make you a dwelling; the talent will make you a fortune.” — Jim Rohn
The second element about the regulation of averages is that with enough time and consistency, you may subsequently see outcomes. maintain plugging away and hold your lead pipeline full always. You will gain so much self assurance and posture while you try this, which is a big attractor issue for your prospect. It’s a good deal less complicated to detach your self from the outcome when you have lots of people to speak to each day.

Leverage your gear
One of the errors many of us make when we first start a domestic enterprise is we truely communicate too much while we ought to as an alternative leverage the gear of professionals who've already done the work for us. Your company pays a variety of money to check the exceptional advertising substances and rent the high-quality expertise to help you grow your enterprise. Your task is to utilize it.
Consider your task as “display and inform”. Take what you’re given and proportion it with others enthusiastically. This sincerely takes away a ton of strain for you! In preference to looking to memorize or learn every single reality to proportion with a prospect, truly recognition on getting to know them more, asking questions, and supplying answers.
In some cases greater emphasis should be placed on asking questions after which simply pointing people to the first-class assets you've got to be had to assist them, it's going to get you better consequences and dispose of a ton of stress and worry. Communicate much less, share greater!
That sums up our five prospecting guidelines to help you rock out your commercial enterprise this week and get you greater sales.
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Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Robotics Warehouse



Fetch is building robots for the warehouses of the future

Fetch is building robots for the warehouses of the future

Fetch is building robots for the warehouses of the future

What’s the first thing you buy yourself after announcing a $25 million Series B? A brand new office space, of course. Fetch was still mid-move when we arrived at the robotics startup’s brand new spacious digs in San Jose.
Located in an otherwise nondescript South Bay office park, the new space gives the four-year-old company plenty of room to grow its operations. There’s ample office space, robot-themed meeting rooms and a large, mock warehouse, where Fetch’s army of autonomous fulfillment ‘bots cruise around, largely undisturbed.
Fetch was founded in 2014 by alumni from Willow Garage, a Menlo Park-based robotics hardware company that closed its doors the same year. In its earliest days, the company helped fund its work with the Fetch Mobile Manipulator and Freight Mobile Robots, low-cost research robots sold to universities, designed to carry on the work of Willow Garage’s once-ubiquitous PR2.
But warehouse logistics have long been Fetch’s true focus. “When we started it about four years ago, it was based on some of the work of Willow Garage,” CEO Melonee Wise tells TechCrunch. “We spent a lot of time looking at where the market was going. Manufacturing and warehouse looked like a pretty tractable problem from a robotics perspective. We spent a lot of time looking at where the market was going.”

Fetch’s solution is a series of round, modular hardware platforms — autonomous circles with wheels that look a fair bit like oversized Roomba. The systems have on-board intelligence systems, designed to navigate around what roboticists refer to as a “semi-structured environment,” all while avoiding obstacles and their human and robotic co-workers. A few “dropped” boxes of old Fruit Roll-Ups and random warehouse goods are scattered around the space, for good measure.
The system is combined with a proprietary cloud control platform and a graphic-based interface designed to let non-roboticists deploy the system in a number of hours. The key to the system’s flexibility is a number of modules that sit atop the platforms, including an RFID module for locating inventory and a fixed shelf.
Two new additions announced this month also bring a conveyor belt transfer system and an add-on that can pick up and move shelves. Wise says the company is also moving toward building a system capable of picking and placing objects — a kind of Holy Grail in the world of warehouse robotics.

Of course, the more intelligent and diversified Fetch’s hardware and software becomes, the more potential the system has to replace its human counterparts. But Wise, like many in industrial automation, contends that the robots will ultimately fill jobs that companies are already having a difficult time filling. After all, the demands of online retail have put a strain on the shipping industry — which is precisely why companies like DHL have already begun deploying Fetch robots.
“There’s a lot of noise right now around robots and jobs, but if you look at our specific industry, there’s actually a huge labor shortage,” says Wise. Amazon Prime has really ratcheted up the market ferocity as far as getting product to people very fast, and that has a lot of implications, as far as how much labor you need.”

 Know EXACTLY who you are marketing to

   This is the number one step that the overwhelming majority of people getting ready to market on Instagram stumble with or ignore completely, and it is the final nail in their coffin before they even get started.

You just cannot have any real success whatsoever with online marketing without first understanding exactly what’s happening in your market, what your ideal prospect is interested in most, and the kinds of content that they really gravitate to.

For starters, you have to get crystal clear about who your ideal prospect really is…

Sure, this isn’t quite as “sexy” as leveraging the latest Instagram marketing tactic du jour, but it is the heart and soul of a proven marketing approach and the only way that you are going to be able to hit the ground running with your new Instagram efforts.

A lot of otherwise smart and savvy business owners and marketers are going to try and create the business of their dreams or a brand that really resonates with what they are most interested in.

This is especially deadly for business owners and entrepreneurs that are trying to “scratch their own itch” and feel like they are the best customer for their products or services.

These are the kinds of business owners and entrepreneurs that are going to color all of their marketing and advertising according to what they would be most attracted to, as opposed to what the majority of their market is interested in.

Do not make this same mistake.

How To Build Your Brand With Instagram

Instead, create a customer profile that is as detailed as humanly possible about whom your perfect prospect is.

Break down their age, their interests outside of your products and services, the hobbies that they most enjoy, the income that they are likely to pull down, their marital status, and absolutely everything else you can come up with to really zero in on EXACTLY who they are.

Then and only then will you be able to create the kind of Instagram content (and other pieces of marketing content, for that matter) that will really resonate with them as a core individual.

This is when you’re able to turn up the heat, this is when you’re able to knock your marketing out of the park, and this is when you have an almost unfair competitive advantage over your competitors.

Speaking of your competitors…

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Kernel By Microsoft

Microsoft built its own custom Linux kernel for its new IoT service

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At a small press event in San Francisco, Microsoft today announced the launch of a secure end-to-end IoT product that focuses on microcontroller-based devices — the kind of devices that use tiny and relatively low-powered microcontrollers (MCUs) for basic control or connectivity features. Typically, these kinds of devices, which could be anything from a toy to a household gadget or an industrial application, don’t often get updated and hence, security often suffers.
At the core of Azure Sphere is a new class of certified MCUs. As Microsoft president and chief legal officer Brad Smith stressed in today’s announcement, Microsoft will license these new Azure Sphere chips for free, in hopes to jump-start the Azure Sphere ecosystem.
Because it’s hard to secure a device you can’t update or get telemetry from, it’s no surprise that these devices will feature built-in connectivity. And with that connectivity, these devices can also connect to the Azure Sphere Security Service in the cloud.

Now, you probably assume that these devices will run Windows, but you’re wrong. For the first time ever, Microsoft is launching a custom Linux kernel and distribution: the Azure Sphere OS. It’s an update to the kind of real-time operating systems that today’s MCUs often use.
Why use Linux? “With Azure Sphere, Microsoft is addressing an entirely new class of IoT devices, the MCU,” Rob Lefferts, Microsoft’s partner director for Windows enterprise and security told me at the event.” Windows IoT runs on microprocessor units (MPUs) which have at least 100x the power of the MCU. The Microsoft-secured Linux kernel used in the Azure Sphere IoT OS is shared under an OSS license so that silicon partners can rapidly enable new silicon innovations.” And those partners are also very comfortable with taking an open-source release and integrating that with their products.
To get the process started, MediaTek is producing the first set of these new MCUs. These are low-powered, single-core ARM-A7 systems that run at 500MHz and include WiFi connectivity as well as a number of other I/O options.
As far as the open ecosystem goes, Smith also stressed that the devices can be used with services that run on any other cloud, no matter whether that’s AWS or the Alibaba Cloud.
Interestingly, Amazon’s AWS unit announced a somewhat similar project at its re:Invent conference last year. It’s probably no surprise that these large cloud providers are interested in MCUs, given that while the devices themselves are not bound to any cloud, the only way to get the full value out of them is in combination with cloud services, whether that’s for authenticating new devices, updating operating systems or managing the software that runs on them.



 Know EXACTLY who you are marketing to

   This is the number one step that the overwhelming majority of people getting ready to market on Instagram stumble with or ignore completely, and it is the final nail in their coffin before they even get started.

You just cannot have any real success whatsoever with online marketing without first understanding exactly what’s happening in your market, what your ideal prospect is interested in most, and the kinds of content that they really gravitate to.

For starters, you have to get crystal clear about who your ideal prospect really is…

Sure, this isn’t quite as “sexy” as leveraging the latest Instagram marketing tactic du jour, but it is the heart and soul of a proven marketing approach and the only way that you are going to be able to hit the ground running with your new Instagram efforts.

A lot of otherwise smart and savvy business owners and marketers are going to try and create the business of their dreams or a brand that really resonates with what they are most interested in.

This is especially deadly for business owners and entrepreneurs that are trying to “scratch their own itch” and feel like they are the best customer for their products or services.

These are the kinds of business owners and entrepreneurs that are going to color all of their marketing and advertising according to what they would be most attracted to, as opposed to what the majority of their market is interested in.

Do not make this same mistake.

How To Build Your Brand With Instagram

Instead, create a customer profile that is as detailed as humanly possible about whom your perfect prospect is.

Break down their age, their interests outside of your products and services, the hobbies that they most enjoy, the income that they are likely to pull down, their marital status, and absolutely everything else you can come up with to really zero in on EXACTLY who they are.

Then and only then will you be able to create the kind of Instagram content (and other pieces of marketing content, for that matter) that will really resonate with them as a core individual.

This is when you’re able to turn up the heat, this is when you’re able to knock your marketing out of the park, and this is when you have an almost unfair competitive advantage over your competitors.

Speaking of your competitors…

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Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Educating People Is Important