As Published In
Oracle Magazine
May/June 2011


Mash Up

News • Views • Trends • Tools


Money Is Obsolete

Cash is so passé. Now anyone—from Girl Scouts hawking cookies to growing businesses—can accept credit cards by pairing a Square card reader with a smartphone or iPad. To get started, provide Square, Inc., with details about yourself and your bank. Then the Square team will send you a free Square card reader. Or opt for the definitely not-square “Double Happiness” Square card reader from designer Vivienne Tam (US$10; proceeds go to charity). Square will take 2.75 percent of your swiped transactions and 3.5 percent plus US$0.15 for keyed-in transactions; there are no other fees. The service is available in the U.S. for U.S.-issued credit cards. Square works with a variety of Apple iOS and Google Android devices. Download at the Apple App Store or Android Market.

Going Green

Are green supply chains becoming the norm? It looks that way, according to an IFS North America December 2010 survey of more than 200 North American manufacturing executives at companies with revenues of US$100 million or more.  

  • Part of green supply chain — 38%
  • Have a green supply chain initiative — 30%
  • Expect to be in a green supply chain initiative in the next few years — 26%
  • Do not expect to have a green supply chain — 6% 

Fitness Apps

Summer’s almost here—time to get in shape. Your smartphone can help.

Nike+ GPS
Runners can map their routes, record their pace, track their progress, and challenge others online. Set a music playlist for extra encouragement.
US$1.99 (iPhone).

This app tracks time, distance, speed, and altitude for running, hiking, cycling, skiing, and more. Pairs with some Bluetooth heart rate monitors.
Free (Android, iPhone, BlackBerry, Windows, and others).

Design a workout routine based on your fitness level, goals, and the equipment at your gym. Tracks progress and adjusts as your fitness improves. Included videos make for a large download.
US$1.99 (iPhone).

Pocket Yoga
Verbal and visual instructions take you through three different flow yoga routines at three difficulty levels and three durations. Substitute your own music and track your progress.
US$2.99 (iPhone).

Extracurricular Video

“ Compliance used to be the heart of every successful organization, every successful career. Now, though, compliance is no longer a competitive advantage. We need to be nudged away from conformity and toward ingenuity.”

— Seth Godin, author of Poke the Box (The Domino Project, 2011)

As an experienced Oracle professional, you’re well suited to climb the IT ladder—maybe. Increasingly, employers look beyond stellar resumes for dynamic interests (no, all-night hacking doesn’t count) beyond work. Need to pump some vitae into your curriculum? Check out Contour GPS, the world’s smallest and lightest GPS video camera. Mount this 5.3-ounce high-definition cam to your helmet and capture a complete 1080 pixel A/V story, along with location, route, speed, and altitude, of your next amazing venture. Gravity sports—skiing, snowboarding, mountain biking, surfing—all play really well, but you could also tour your corporate campus or neighborhood and spice up that stale blog while proving there’s life outside the cubicle. US$349.99; includes integrated omni-directional microphone, wide-angle lens, 2 GB microSD card (expandable to 32 GB for up to eight hours of video), and Storyteller video/mapping application for downloading, editing, and adding text to your video and posting it on contour.com.

Time Drain

30 Minutes of Your Day
That’s how much time 25 percent of IT professionals spend logging in to work Websites and databases each day.
Source: Quest Software  

Onshoring on the Rise

35 percent of U.S. technology companies outsource services or manufacturing to companies outside the country, down from 37 percent in 2010 and 62 percent in 2009.
Source: BDO Technology Outlook Survey


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