Day: October 17, 2020

Pear hosted its invite-only demo day online this year; here’s what you might have missed – TechCrunch

Pear, the eight-year-old, Palo Alto, Calif.-based seed-stage venture firm that has, from its outset, attracted the attention of VCs who think the firm has an eye for nascent talent, staged its seventh annual demo day earlier this week, and while it was virtual, one of the startups has already signed a term sheet from a top-tier venture firm.

To give the rest of you a sneak peak, here’s a bit about all of the startups that presented, in broad strokes:

  1. ) AccessBell

What it does: Video conferencing platform for enterprise workflows


Founders: Martin Aguinis (CEO), Josh Payne (COO), Kamil Ali (CTO)

The pitch: Video has emerged as one of the prominent ways for enterprises to communicate internally and externally with their customers and partners. Current video conferencing tools like Zoom and WebEx are great for standalone video but they have their own ecosystems and don’t integrate

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Photos: NASA’s OSIRIS-REx, asteroid Bennu, and other sights from the spacecraft’s journey through our solar system

OSIRIS-REx descends on Bennu

In the days ahead, NASA’s OSIRIS-REx spacecraft will descend on asteroid Bennu to collect a sample of its surface in what the space agency is calling a Touch-And-Go (TAG). If successful, the craft could return the largest sample recovery since the Apollo era, according to NASA. The collected material will return to Earth in Sept. of 2023 and could provide invaluable insights about the formation of our solar system, the origins of life, and more. Here are photos of OSIRIS-REx, asteroid Bennu, and other images the spacecraft has snapped along its multi-billion mile journey.

SEE: OSIRIS-REx on Bennu: The mission’s project scientist details “greedy” asteroid sampling, challenges, and more (TechRepublic)

Image: NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center

Comment and share: Photos: NASA’s OSIRIS-REx, asteroid Bennu, and other sights from the spacecraft’s journey through our solar system

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Google’s Kelsey Hightower offers tips on how to centralize and evolve IT practices

Commentary: While you may not be able to run like Google, there is one important way others can emulate its engineering success.

Image: metamorworks, Getty Images/iStockphoto

The problem with enterprise IT consistency (i.e., with implementing a single software stack across the organization that will bring order to chaos) is that enterprise IT isn’t static. Because technology isn’t static. As Google’s Kelsey Hightower put it in an interview with Comcast’s chief software architect Jon Moore, “Most organizations learn over time. So whatever you build today as the [default stack] is going to branch out based on new learnings.” 

So how should an enterprise standardize, thereby reaping cost savings and productivity gains? You don’t, said Hightower. At least, not once and for all: “Standardize where you can, but allow things to grow apart and then re-standardize those things as you go and just follow the path of evolution.”

But how to standardize?

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Professor creates cybersecurity camp to inspire girls to choose STEM careers

Teaching via Zoom has had some unexpected benefits, college professor says, though robotics class is still a challenge. Her real passion is inspiring young women and girls to go into computer science.

TechRepublic’s Karen Roby spoke with Dr. Pauline Mosley, assistant chair of Information Technology at the Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems at Pace University, about getting girls interested in STEM careers and the challenges associated with teaching robotics via Zoom. The following is an edited transcript of their conversation.

SEE: Social engineering: A cheat sheet for business professionals (free PDF) (TechRepublic)

Pauline Mosley: Transitioning from face-to-face modality into a virtual modality has been challenging. However, it has been very, very rewarding. For example, this past semester, I taught a course called Web Design for Nonprofit Organizations, which was comprised of students from China, Russia, and Saudi Arabia. It was amazing how we were able to,

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How to choose a Google Workspace plan

New customers may choose any plan, but legacy G Suite customers will want to pay attention to pricing and features.

Illustration: Andy Wolber/TechRepublic

Google Workspace represents a rebranding of the set of applications formerly known as G Suite. The announcement signals Google’s desired direction: A unified workspace. Workspace pricing however, sends a more significant signal than the renaming of Google’s current app offerings (Figure A). Here’s a look at the new Workspace plans and pricing–along with a few key features customers might consider when selecting a plan.

SEE: Google Sheets: Tips and tricks (TechRepublic download) 

New plans and pricing for Google Workspace

Google Workspace now offers three Business plans (Starter, Standard, Plus) and two Enterprise plans (Standard, Plus). 

Google lists pricing for the Business offerings as:

  • Google Workspace Business Starter: $6 per user, per month
  • Google Workspace Business Standard: $12 per user, per month
  • Google Workspace Business Standard:
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8 gifts for space lovers and amateur astronomers including telescopes, augmented reality lunar experiences, and more

From a portable telescope and celestial charts to ballpoint pens designed for zero gravity, here are eight stellar gifts for space lovers and amateur astronomers.

Selecting the perfect gift for someone can be a challenging undertaking. In this curated guide, we’ve compiled a selection of gift ideas for space enthusiasts. From top-notch telescopes to Martian themed LEGO sets, here are eight of our favorite gifts for space lovers and astronomy enthusiasts.

Image: Amazon

A telescope is virtually an essential for amateur astronomers and the Celestron AstroMaster 70AZ is a solid option. The 70-millimeter refractor telescope offers skywatchers views of the moon and even distant objects including Saturn’s stunning rings as well as Jovian moons, per the manufacturer. The model also comes with a two-year warranty.

$150 at Amazon


Image: Amazon

This star chart helps space enthusiasts of all ages locate constellations and other celestial bodies. The chart also includes information

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