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Tech at the Olympics: A New Competition

February 14th, 2014

Shani DavisWhile the Olympics of Ancient Greece may have been a testament to pure athletic prowess, modern day Olympic Games are just as much a showcase for technological innovation as they are for highlighting the power of the human body. Today, entire teams of scientists, engineers and technology pros support athletes through innovations designed to improve training performance, sporting equipment, and athletic ability. The growing reliance on technology hasn’t come without significant controversy, as teams must work within strict requirements set for individual events. For this year’s XXII Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia, this means weight, length and material limitations on equipment like bobsleds, specific guidelines for outfits’ fabric and tightness, and stricter regulations to make sure teams are not cheating.

Here’s some interesting tech facts from this year’s Winter Games and around Sochi:

  • The Mach 39, a project from Under Armour and Lockheed Martin, is a new innovative speed skating suite that employs golf ball-esque dimples to disrupt air flow that bulks up behind a skater to shave nanoseconds of race times.
  • Sochi will be the first Olympic venue to fully support a 4G LTE wireless network via MegaFon and Rostelecom, two Russian telecommunication giants.
  • Watch-maker Omega has installed multiple sensors on bobsleds to collect incredibly precise performance data on rates of acceleration and deceleration, aggregate speed, and angular velocity.
  • Sochi’s technological infrastructure is supported by a new network using Shortest Path Bridging, which is capable of handling up to afp-molson54,000 Gbit/s (54 Tbit/s) of traffic.
  • Fiber-optic cables alert 403 snow making guns to create snow when needed for the courses of some of the most popular winter events.
  • The digital marketers at Molson Beer have jumped in on the tech fun by providing branded beer freezers that only unlock for Canadian passport holders.

Posted in Current Events, Talener Blog

Talener Boston Cycles for Survival!

February 10th, 2014

This weekend members of our Boston office participated in Cycle for Survival, a high-energy indoor team cycling event that raises money for rare cancer research at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. So far our riders Max Neumeyer, Mike Slovak, Joe Barbano, Jess Shirazi, Kaitlin Pondolfino, Kim Siembieda and Brooke Ferry have raised over $3,956 and counting that will go directly to clinical trials and research studies. Even though the event has passed, you can still donate up until April 1st! Check out some photos from the event below!

Posted in Company News, Talener Blog, Talener Culture

iBeacons: A Curated Location Experience or Invasive Marketing?

February 7th, 2014

Phone iBeaconsA year after the iBeacon was announced at the World Wide Developer’s Conference, retailers are jumping on the opportunity to utilize Apple’s powerful new technology that allows for a deeper level of interaction between marketers, smart phone users, and the digital and physical worlds. Backed by the power of Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE), a variant of the Bluetooth Classic, iBeacon possesses the power to detect devices in short range, while taking up minimal battery life and incredibly low data traffic. What does this mean for marketers? A new way to strategically geolocate and message visitors in a way that hasn’t been possible before. While smart phones have allowed for geotargeting in years’ past, the new BLE technology is even more precise and not held back by the typical problems associated with batter drain from WiFi and Bluetooth-or blocked signals.

Beacon hardware components (produced by both Apple and outside companies like Qualcomm) are now being scattered around stores, museums, venues, and other locations to completely transform visitor experiences. Take for example how Apple is utilizing its own technology in Apple Stores around the country. Visitors can download the Apple Store App, switch on their location and notification services, and then wait for a curated experience as they roam the store. By syncing with the in-store Beacon hardware, smart phone users can be informed of special deals depending on the department they are in, schedule Genius Bar appointments, get alerts when their Genius is ready, and even purchase merchandise directly through the phone without any employee interaction.

The Beacon technology could potentially mean a more disruptive in-store experience, but it also unlocks a creative potential for venues like museums who could provide details on nearby artwork or relevant information to improve visitor experiences. The NFL has already experimented with this in Super Bowl XLVIII at both MetLife Stadium and the Times Square Super Bowl Boulevard, where beacons were scattered to alert NFL app users on news like closest entry gates and points of interest.

Companies experimenting with the technology will have to deal with the inevitable blacklash from the many with major concerns over data security and privacy. Even though the Beacons themselves do not use an internet connection or collect data, they will still sync with phones that have access lines to user data.

In the coming months we can expect to see stores, ranging from Macy’s to American Eagle, playing with the technology at their retail locations. Retailers will have to responsibly balance the line between helpful in-store notifications and obnoxious advertisements.

Posted in Current Events, Talener Blog

Cracking the Interview Dress Code

February 6th, 2014

While the tech job you eventually land may have a more relaxed dress code than your typical sales or corporate gig, that doesn’t mean you should dress for the interview like you already have the job. And while there certainly are those companies that pride themselves on the youthful start-up atmosphere, which includes that certain style of dress, technology professionals are employed in industries that range the gamut – from finance corporations to ad agencies to everything in between – where fashion protocol is a whole different story. While the Zuckerberg getup (hoodie, t-shirt and jeans) may work down the line once you’ve nabbed the job, it’s probably not advisable for most interviews.

You shouldn’t have to worry about playing a what-to-wear guessing game or having to research online to find feedback from past interviewers who may regretted their fashion choices. If you’re working with a decent recruiter who knows their clients well, they will point you in the right direction. If you’re interviewing directly, you can even ask the HR Rep what typical interview attire is. Err on the side of caution though and always dress more formal than not!

For more insight into what to wear and some interview appearance basics check out our Slideshare presentation below! It should help demystify the professional fashion lingo and provide some helpful pointers to guarantee a great first impression from the moment you walk in the door.

Interview Dress Code: A Style Guide from talener

Posted in Career Tips, Talener Blog

Our Next NYC Talener After Hours

February 4th, 2014

Talener After Hours February 19thOur next Talener Afters Hours event in NYC will be an engaging presentation by Google Product Manager Ben Cole on the evening of Wednesday, February 19th!

Ben will discuss his experience working for Google’s emerging markets team in Africa where he was responsible for building and launching tools for small businesses on the continent. His talk will cover life there on the ground, how he and his team figured out what to build, and the surprising lessons learned.

The talk should last around 20 minutes before we open the floor for discussion and networking. We look forward to seeing you there!  To RSVP please join our official Tech After Hours meetup group!

Building Technology for the Developing World
Wednesday, February 19 – 6:30- 8pm
Talener NYC 11 East 44th St, Suite 1200 NY NY 10017

Posted in Events, Talener Blog

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