Day: May 1, 2020

The role of digital tools in a post-pandemic world

Coronavirus has caused conferences, employee training, and meetings to go virtual—a trend that may not completely end after the chaos does, expert says.

With the coronavirus pandemic forcing organizations to shift to remote work, many companies are realizing their telecommuting abilities. Meetings are being held over video conferencing platforms, conferences are virtual, and employee training is provided via webinars. 

SEE: The tech pro’s guide to video conferencing (free PDF) (TechRepublic)

Because so many organizations can function remotely, professionals are expecting the future of work to be more flexible. Remote work was already gaining popularity, but with the pandemic accelerating remote capabilities for organizations, telecommuting is now looking like the new norm.    

Everyone is turning to virtual tools for business, even those that were previously considered laggards, said Zvi Guterman, CEO of CloudShare, a cloud computing provider that helps facilitate virtual enterprise environments. 

“Organizations that were more conservative

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Supercomputers playing a significant role in COVID-19 research

Initiatives are underway to predict where the virus will spread and analyze how effective preventative measures are, according to the National Center for Supercomputing Applications.

In the frenzied rush to find a drug to treat COVID-19 patients researchers have a powerful weapon aiding them-supercomputers. The world’s fastest computers are being utilized to vastly speed up research to aid in the fight against the coronavirus, said John Towns, executive director for science and technology at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications.

Supercomputers are being used by researchers and institutions to track the spread of COVID-19 in real time. Researchers are using supercomputers to predict where the virus will spread by identifying patterns and analyzing how preventative measures like social distancing are helping, the NCSA said.

They are also playing a role in the discovery of effective treatments. Supercomputers are allowing experts to explore the structure of the virus to develop a

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The ‘PuffPacket’ could help researchers learn when, how and why people vape – TechCrunch

Vaping is a controversial habit: it certainly has its downsides, but anecdotally it’s a fantastic smoking cessation aid. The thing is, until behavioral scientists know a bit more about who does it, when, how much and other details, its use will continue to be something of a mystery. That’s where the PuffPacket comes in.

Designed by Cornell engineers, the PuffPacket is a small device that attaches to e-cigarettes (or vape pens, or whatever you call yours) and precisely measures their use, sharing that information with a smartphone app for the user, and potentially researchers, to review later.

Some vaping devices are already set up with something like this, to tell a user when the cartridge is running low or a certain limit has been reached. But generally when vaping habits are studied, they rely on self-report data, not proprietary apps.

“The lack of continuous and objective understanding of vaping behaviors

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How to check for weak passwords on your Linux systems with John the Ripper

Are you certain your users are working with strong passwords on your Linux servers? Let John the Ripper show you who is and who isn’t.

Getty Images/iStockphoto

The security of your Linux servers is only as strong as the passwords used by your end users. If your users have weak passwords, it’s only a matter of time before any given ne’er do well breaks into your system to wreak havoc on your network or steal precious data.

You don’t want that.

So what do you do? You can certainly set password policies, but even then, you might have a user that predates the policy or maybe you’ve set a policy that borders on weak. 

To make sure your users aren’t working with weak passwords, you can employ a tool called John the Ripper (JTR) to make sure those passwords aren’t easily crackable. 

Let me show you how this is done.

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Artificial intelligence is predicting coronavirus outbreaks before they start

Artificial intelligence has played a central role in the fight against the coronavirus. Cotiviti has leveraged AI to predict COVID-19 hot spots around the country before an outbreak happens.

As the coronavirus continues to spread around the globe, we’ve seen a surge in the use of cutting edge technologies to track and control the pandemic, especially artificial intelligence. It seems like only a distant memory when artificial intelligence (AI) was being discussed as an emergent “existential threat” to humanity. However, with the rise of a pandemic, we’ve quickly embraced the ever-expanding capabilities of AI as a part of our first line of defense.

Recently, an AI platform fed mountains of pharmaceutical data and research studies journals determined that a rheumatoid arthritis medication could potentially be used to treat COVID-19 patients. As we reported earlier this month, some companies are deploying surveillance systems harnessing AI to pinpoint potential infections

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