Talking SPACs with investor Bradley Tusk – TechCrunch

Bradley Tusk has become known in recent years for being involved in what’s about to get hot, from his early days advising Uber, to writing one of the first checks to the insurance startup Lemonade, to pushing forward the idea that we should be using the smart devices in our pockets to vote.

Indeed, because he’s often at the vanguard, it wasn’t hugely surprising when Tusk, like a growing number of other investors, formed a $300 million SPAC or special acquisition company, one that he and a partner plan to use to target a business in the leisure, gaming, or hospitality industry, according to a regulatory filing.

Because Tusk — a former political operative who ran the successful third mayoral campaign for Mike Bloomberg —  seems adept at seeing around corners, we called him up late last week to ask whether SPACs are here to stay, how a

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Big data and DevOps: No longer separate silos, and that’s a good thing

The pandemic has caused major shifts in the way IT and big data work. Now they may be working together for better outcomes.

Image: iStock/ RRice1981

The world has changed a lot since March 2020, and the coronavirus pandemic has affected nearly every aspect of our lives. While we’ve seen massive changes in technology already, another change happening right now is in big data and its role with DevOps.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the blending of data analytics and DevOps, meaning developers, data scientists, and product managers will need to work more closely together than ever before,” said Bill Detwiler, editor in chief of TechRepublic. 

SEE: TechRepublic Premium editorial calendar: IT policies, checklists, toolkits, and research for download  (TechRepublic Premium)

Detwiler was interviewing managers at Tibco, a leader in big data integration and analytics. They said the coronavirus pandemic had caused organizations to rethink how they were

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4 key moves CIOs can use to accelerate digital business according to Gartner

Gartner outlines how CIOs can move their companies ahead next year and gain long-term agility.

The race to digital is on, and the companies that win will be those that can continue the momentum built up this year during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to Gartner’s CIO Agenda survey for 2021, which was announced during the Gartner IT Symposium/Xpo Americas conference, which runs through Thursday. 

“The most important job you have as CIO, as an IT leader, is figuring out how to accelerate your digitization,” said Andy Rowsell-Jones, distinguished research vice president at Gartner. 

“Coming into 2021, I think it’s more of a straight road now. The black top is a bit more solid under our feet. There’s still a few nasty twists and turns to be had, but I don’t think from what we’re seeing 2021 is going to be as interesting as 2020 was. It’s going to be

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Trilo lets merchants offer rewards to customers choosing bank-to-bank payments – TechCrunch

Open banking enables bank-to-bank payments, meaning that (in theory) merchants should be able to accept payments without having to hand over fees to Visa or Mastercard or other payment providers, such as Stripe. The challenge, however, isn’t just implementing open-banking based payments as a checkout option — there are are already a host of open banking tech providers — but persuading customers to switch to a new payment option they are likely unfamiliar with.

The solution, according to fintech Trilo, is to offer customers incentives, for using open banking, such as cashback or additional perks, coupled with a user-friendly payment flow. The U.K. startup is breaking cover today with the launch of its alpha.

Image Credits: Trilo

“Businesses lose out on so much of their hard-earned money whenever a payment is made with cards, their transaction fees can be up to and above 4% in some cases,” says founder

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Microsoft Windows Virtual Desktop: A cheat sheet

Cloud-based DaaS offers several advantages to a remote workforce. This smart guide to Microsoft Windows Virtual Desktop assesses the platform and what it can offer.

Image: iStock/DragonImages

Unprecedented conditions surrounding COVID-19 and the accompanying global pandemic have left many business enterprises scrambling to find ways to accommodate an increasingly remote and virtual workforce. Some businesses have discovered that workforce productivity is the same, if not better, under a virtual scheme. These enterprises are likely to adopt platforms like Desktop as a Service (DaaS) and virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) going forward, even after the pandemic has subsided.

SEE: TechRepublic Premium editorial calendar: IT policies, checklists, toolkits, and research for download

Cloud-based DaaS and VDI services are offered by a number of vendors including Microsoft through its Azure cloud platform. Microsoft Windows Virtual Desktop is offered as a free service to certain Microsoft 365 and Azure subscribers. Licenses for individual Windows Virtual

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Holiday tech gifts for under $25

Not everything in today’s tech has to cost a fortune, and there are plenty of great tech-related gifts for those on a budget, or for those who find their holiday list expanding.

You absolutely can be a thoughtful gift-giver, even if you’re on a budget. We took a look at tech-related gift items that cost $25 or less and there’s a surprising amount of fun and useful items to be had. These products will definitely come in handy for those who find their gift list growing longer. Here are some gifts that will be appreciated and still not break the bank.





Kami

A tiny indoor security camera, the Kami Mini includes AI facial detection, optional emergency response with support for up to five locations, Alexa and Google assistant compatibility, clear night vision, a two-way microphone, and high-accuracy human detection to prevent false alerts. To make the camera even smaller, it

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