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Looking good

Look your best before meeting with your key customers with Amazon’s newly released Echo Look. The device – available through Amazon’s website for $200 – is being marketed as a fashion tool that can help users choose their outfits, reports TIME. The depth-sensing camera is said to be capable of taking full-length images and can blur the background, so you get a better look at clothing choices. Amazon also uses a combination of machine learning and expert input to provide a second opinion on clothing picks through a feature called Style Check. Submit two photos, one of each outfit, and the app will rate them based on their fit, color, styling and current trends.


Weekend jaunt

Don’t let a lack of vacation time hold you back from traveling this year. Nearly three quarters of Americans are planning to take a long weekend trip this summer, according to data released by global travel deals publisher Travelzoo. The Travelzoo® Summer 2017 Travel Trends Survey reports that half of travelers say they are likely to take more long weekend trips – defined as an extra day added to a weekend – than they did last year. And, the majority of weekend travelers appear to be willing to travel three or more hours from home. While most tend to travel by car, for those whose destinations are over five hours from home, 40 percent of survey respondents say they will swap their car for a plane or train. Indeed, just over half appear willing to take a spontaneous long weekend trip to Europe, particularly with new low-cost carriers like WOW air and Norwegian offering more competitive fares. Particularly since the average American gets two weeks of vacation time annually according to data from the U.S. Travel Association’s Project, weekend trips make sense.


Adult fidget toys

Do you love to fidget but hate all of the childish fidget toys on the market today? FingerSpinner.com offers a variety of fidget toys for adults. For example, the 9mm-high, silent Tri Moon spinner – reportedly one of the most popular adult fidget toys – offers a discreet way to curb anxious energy and avoid nail biting, toe tapping or pen clicking. And, their ceramic bearings enable them to spin for several minutes with ease. For those who like to flip and click, Finger Spinner offers the Fidget Cube, which features six unique sides and comes in a wide variety of color schemes. For more information visit https://fingerspinner.com/fidget-toys-for-adults-235224/.


Negotiating the Cloud

An essential part of doing business, the cloud offers data protection, including backup, archiving and disaster recovery. Some may not realize, however, that it’s important to carefully read and negotiate their public cloud contract before signing to ensure it meets their business requirements. Veritas offers three important points to keep in mind for professionals working with a cloud provider:

  • Know where your data is located. Some cloud providers may process and store your data anywhere if you fail to select where it must be stored. It’s difficult to verify that the data is actually processed in the data centers claimed by the cloud provider. Some providers may not disclose the data centers’ locations at all. Know what data you store in the cloud. If guaranteeing the location of your data is crucial, then negotiate with the cloud provider to disclose the exact location of the data center in your cloud contract.
  • Does availability extend to your data? Cloud providers are keen to emphasize how redundant and fault-tolerant their clouds are, but you still need to do due diligence. The cloud provider very often won’t warrant data integrity or accept liability for data loss. Most cloud providers make you responsible for taking your own steps to maintain appropriate security, protection and backup of your data. Don’t make any assumptions.
  • What happens to your data after termination of service? Non-payment is just one of the reasons a cloud provider can terminate your contract. Other reasons may include material breach, breach of acceptable use policies or intellectual property rights. The problem is that the actions of one user may trigger rights to terminate the whole service. How long after termination do you have to recover data before your cloud provider erases it? Many providers delete all data immediately or after a short period; 30 days is common. It’s important to understand the grounds for service termination and to negotiate sufficient time to have data returned upon contract termination. Also, consider keeping copies of your backups in another cloud or on a backup appliance.

Before deciding which cloud solution is right for your data, carry out a thorough risk analysis. If you perceive the risks to be so great that substantial contract negotiation seems essential before putting your data in the cloud, it may be that public cloud isn’t the right solution for this type of data and an on-premises private cloud or backup appliance may be better suited.


Safe travels

For sales reps who travel alone late at night or to isolated areas, the Swedish mobile phone company, Doro, has introduced the Doro 8020X, a handset that features a red call for help button on the side. When the button is pressed, the phone sends a text message containing its GPS location to up to five contacts.

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