How Technology Is Making Commercial Trucks Safer

Trucking is a vitally important business in the United States, as trucks are ultimately responsible for moving the vast majority of our goods. However, trucking can also be a dangerous business, and truck accidents recently reached their highest levels in 29 years. Thankfully, technology is evolving to the point that it is making commercial trucks much safer. Here is a quick look at three ways this is happening.

Adaptive Cruise Control

Everyone knows that cruise control in cars can help to control their speed and reduce accidental speeding. Adaptive cruise control is a relatively new feature which uses cameras and sensors to ensure that a truck never gets too close to another car on the road, while still maintaining as consistent a speed as possible. This is vitally important because according to The Law Offices of George Salinas, semi-trailer trucks are difficult to control and slow down because of the heavy freight they haul. This leads to a lot of accidents. Adaptive cruise control takes these factors into account when setting speed and controlling a tuck.

Cameras

Cameras are helping trucks become safer in multiple ways. First, cameras are becoming extremely sensitive, capable of identifying hazards on the road and plugged in with other safety features. As a result, the information gleaned from cameras is a critical component of a truck’s overall safety profile. Additionally, dash cams can now monitor a driver’s safety and alert their company if they are operating their truck in a manner that is unsafe. This rewards safe drivers and helps to take unsafe ones off the road.

Autonomous Driving Capabilities

According to Best Online Traffic School, more than 90 percent of accidents are caused by driver error. Cars that can drive themselves could dramatically reduce these numbers. Thanks to technological advances, it is becoming more possible for autonomous features to take over certain driving responsibilities from humans. This includes automatic braking, lane guidance which can keep a truck from drifting into another lane, automated parking and more. Completely autonomous cars won’t be available for some time, but the technology is evolving to the point that cars and trucks are becoming capable of controlling for the errors that their human drivers make.

Over the course of history, technological advances have made humans much safer while increasing our productivity. Thankfully, those advances are vastly improving the safety of the trucks which move the majority of our goods across the country. In the future, we are very likely to see even more of these safety features.

4 Ways Technology Is Helping the Environment

Over the past few years, scores of technological advances have been made to help the environment. These innovations are seeking to reduce pollution, minimize the use of resources and more. Here are four key ways that technology is currently helping the environment.

We’re Using More Renewable Energy

Carbon dioxide is one of the most commonly recognized greenhouse gases, and it plays a major role in global warming. Many of the nonrenewable energy sources in use today, like coal, are carbon-based, so their use is increasing the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. However, new technological advances are boosting the use of clean, renewable energy. A leader in this field is solar power. In 2018, solar energy use increased by 10 percent and generated energy to power 12.7 million American homes. As technologies improve and solar power becomes more efficient, these numbers will only increase in the coming years.

We’re Using More Electric Cars

Technological advances in transportation are increasing the availability and efficiency of electric vehicles. Electric vehicles do not rely on combustion engines to operate, which virtually eliminates their emissions that would otherwise contribute to air pollution. And, if the electricity used to charge these vehicles is from renewable energy sources, there is even more environmental benefit. Additionally, electric vehicles require vastly fewer parts than their gas-consuming counterparts. Exhaust systems, radiators, and many other systems aren’t required in electric vehicles, minimizing the material used to produce one of these cars.

We’re Using Less Paper

Particularly in the last decade, the internet has provided an alternative to paper forms, receipts and correspondence, greatly reducing the amount of paper used nationwide. Many companies offer incentives for their clients to use online invoicing and payments, further amplifying the environmental benefit of paperless communication. This decreased use of paper has a wide range of benefits for the environment, including the preservation of forests for wildlife and reduced use of cargo ships and planes to transport the paper.

We’re Sharing More Often

Another benefit of the internet has been connecting people to share resources. Companies like Uber, Lyft, and Waze Carpool are encouraging drivers to leave their keys at home and catch a ride with someone else. These companies even offer discounts for those willing to share their ride with other users, increasing the environmental benefit. There are countless other examples of apps and websites created to help people share resources, including Airbnb, Book Mooch, and Olio.

It’s clear that technology can have a massive positive impact on the environment. This impact is sure to increase in the coming years as existing technologies improve and new ones are developed.

What Does the Future of Energy Look Like?

The future of energy is bright. The world is moving away from using fossil fuels and toward a brighter future that relies increasingly on renewable energy for its power needs. Here’s a look at what you can expect in the future from the energy sector.

No More Fossil Fuels

The world is becoming fully aware of the dangers and challenges that these rapidly depleting fossil-fuel sources present to the rest of us. They are expensive, damaging to the environment, and dangerous to obtain. As such, energy use is shifting away from fossil fuels and more toward forms of renewable energy.

Solar Power

Solar power has become the most popular form of renewable energy, with solar panels seemingly sprouting up everywhere. It has relatively low costs to operate and install, thus making it ideal for residential or small-scale installation. As a result, more and more homeowners and business owners are replacing their traditional power sources with solar energy.

Wind Power

Wind power is becoming more popular for large-scale power generation. Because of the size of windmills, this form of power generation is advancing to the point where its use can replace fossil fuels. It requires large tracts of land to operate, but that makes it no different than any other form of energy generation. Best of all, its use comes without any of the power disruption associated with oil, gas, or coal.

Nuclear Power

Nuclear energy is not without its challenges, but it is gaining in popularity because it does have environmental benefits, namely, a total lack of climate-destroying emissions that come with other forms of energy generation. Furthermore, the United States already has dozens of nuclear power plants that are able to meet its electricity-generating needs. However, the world’s uranium reserves may eventually run out. As such, nuclear power is not sustainable indefinitely.

Less Expensive

As technology advances and competition in the renewable energy sector becomes more fierce, prices are dropping. This is happening in terms of both the cost of installation and the cost of the energy itself. Indeed, in many parts of the world, renewable energy is now cheaper than fossil fuels, and this trend is only expected to accelerate over the next few years. The future of energy is healthy and diverse, thanks to advancing technology, declining costs, and an increasing reliance on environmentally healthy forms of renewable energy. This is a change that will be positively felt by everyone over the next few decades.

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Is Automation Taking Jobs Away From Humans?

Automation is one of those words that seems to hush an employee break room full of people quicker than anything else. The concept of automation has developed a negative connotation among employees, especially in a few specific industries, including manufacturing. In the past, automation meant the elimination of low-level jobs. Today, companies are making an effort to automate low-level tasks and simultaneously train employees to takeover more profitable and higher-skilled tasks. So, is automation really taking jobs away from humans?

Automation Is Creating New Jobs

It may not look this way on the surface because if you are an employee whose job is being taken over by a machine, all you see is the job that you lost. The new machines, though, require operators. These are several tests being conducted at food establishments, for example. At a hamburger restaurant, there is a machine that is supposed to make several burgers an hour, but the machine requires operators. The food still has to be prepped, and cleanup is still necessary. In many ways, automation is simply shifting responsibilities while making humans smarter and better skilled.

Some Industries Will Lose Jobs

Some industries will suffer job losses. In the farming sector, farmers are at the mercy of volatile raw material prices as well as the potential for injuries to their workers. There have also been issues that have affected the cost of labor, so industrious individuals have been working on machines that automate repetitive tasks. Believe it or not, they also have human safety in mind, too. This means that those who are in danger of losing their jobs to machines should start learning how to operate them or gain higher-level skills.

So, Is Automation Good or Bad?

When it comes to automation, your glass can be half full or half empty. If your glass is half empty, you have to examine your circumstances. If you are someone who can retire, then maybe that is the best route to take if your job is being replaced with automation. If you are far from retirement, you might consider picking up new skills. Machinery automation has had positive effects in the industrial manufacturing industry.

It is an interesting time to be alive. In the past, the Industrial Revolution caused some panic among low-skilled workers, but people adapted to their new circumstances. Technology and software are absolutely bringing about a new revolution, but only time will tell how things will actually work out.

For more AI news, check out this article!

What Does the Future Hold For Tesla?

What is Tesla doing at this very moment? Dealing with production issues, sales issues, and more issues. But does that mean that Tesla will falter? Not likely. The future of Tesla has many predictable hurdles to jump, but the company’s future looks bright.

Current Bottlenecks

In 2018 Elon Musk reported that Tesla was in the midst of “production hell.” Bottlenecks in the Tesla production chain have held back the delivery of promised models. Battery demands are another bottleneck impacting current production abilities. Elon Musk’s solution is to automate the entire production factory. The goal of building a completely automated factory has led to many delays, including a cap on how quickly Tesla can manufacture its vehicles.

Tech Will Get Smarter

Technology is what keeps Tesla going. The batteries the company uses rely on recharging technology that is relatively recent. This is not to mention the extensive tech under the hood and within the dashboard. Tesla vehicles regularly update their onboard technology through a link system. In one update they added an entire sketchpad system and then proceeded to add saturation control, color pickets and other graphic control elements. Ideally, the updates to the technology in Tesla’s future will focus less on artistic development and more on tangible aspects such as battery demands. One of the major updates is a change to the autopilot function. There have been some concerns around its autopilot, with some thinking the technology isn’t safe enough to trust yet. Now, the software has been revised, but you should expect to see many more updates that limit the abilities of the autopilot feature.

Sales Struggles

Will Tesla give in and allow dealerships, specifically franchise dealerships, to sell their vehicles? Probably not. Tesla has held out a long fight to sell in certain states. For many people, that means traveling to purchase a Tesla. Many states do not permit vehicle manufacturers to sell directly to the consumer, which is what Tesla does. However, instead of finding a way to work with dealerships they can support, Tesla has decided to change laws. They are currently fighting in several states to sell independently. They’re rocking the boat, and it’s likely you’ll see more Tesla models sold through unconventional means such as online ordering and shipment.

Tesla is playing a risky game by assessing and dealing with bottlenecks now to confront the needs of the future. The company is relying on continuing technology advancements and is hoping that its products will contribute significantly to shaping the future of electric cars. To be successful, the company will need to overcome production troubles, safety fears, and sales problems.

Bigger or Smaller: Where Are Smart Devices Going Next?

It seems as if there is a new smart device that hits the market every year. These new devices provide us with more utility and convenience than ever before. Things change so quickly that people have a hard time even imagining what is next. This provides us an opportunity to have an open brainstorming session based upon trends to predict what can come next. Let’s take a further look at some current trends that are happening now and what we can expect to see in the near future.

Current Trends

Cell phones are becoming more and more accessible to the general public. One of the most popular trends for 2019 so far has been implementing a portable factor into new models. While cell phones are naturally portable, there have been steps to take this further. Foldable phones have been introduced and will hit the market by the end of the year. This will allow the user even more options to carry their phone in convenient ways whenever they are out and about. It will also allow the screen to become bigger when unfolded so that there is a bigger display that could be used for gaming or watching movies more easily. The newest models of smartphones will also feature dual-screens, stronger AIs, and sliding displays.

Bigger isn’t Always Better

Some people enjoy larger phones. The bigger screen allows them more real estate for their videos and pictures. Unfortunately, bigger screens can end up being a major hindrance if you aren’t careful. Bigger screens lead to higher instances of distracted driving and other problems. Many companies do not take this into consideration and continue to make cell phones with larger screens. Larger cell phones have more chances of breaking as well. The larger screen is more prone to getting damaged or dropped. However, some developers are considering this and taking necessary action in order to downsize the newest models of smartphones into a comfortable model that can please all.

Security

Our cell phones can get hacked at almost any time. We keep our personal information on our phones without even realizing that this is a risk to our safety. Fortunately, trends have shown us that newer phones will be big on security. We can expect more countermeasures against hackers trying to get our information without us knowing.

Cell phones have become an integral part of our lives. We use them every day to help us at work and to communicate with our loved ones. Fortunately, the future is bright for cell phone technology and new innovations are already on the horizon.

Are Self-Driving Cars Really the Future?

How would your mornings improve if you didn’t have to pay attention to traffic nor to steer your vehicle? You would no doubt have time to catch some extra sleep or read the daily newspaper. Many advantages could emerge from the introduction of self-driving cars. However, many wonder if this technology is ready for the open roads.

Self-Driving Cars Today

Although it may not be apparent, self-driving cars are slowly being introduced into the public every year. According to Stewart J. Guss, several companies are developing self-driving cars and they are already on the road in 21 states in the US. One of the most successful self-driving cars on the road right now is Aptiv, located in Las Vegas. This smart-vehicle was introduced at the 2018 Consumer Electronics Show and has since accomplished over 50,000 Lyft trips with safety drivers present. This is just one of the firms breaking new ground in the field.

The Challenges Ahead

Although many advances have been made in the field of smart-vehicle technology, there are still those who believe that this technology is far too undeveloped for our very unpredictable world. Even some of the biggest names in self-driving tech share these concerns. According to Perfect Score Driving School, Waymo CEO John Krafcik said that “autonomy always will have some constraints.” Critics wonder if the utility of self-driving technologies will run into roadblocks in the confusing, crowded environments of major cities.

A Path Forward

So, if self-driving vehicles are not ready for big cities, should this technology be put to rest? Entrepreneurs and scientists certainly don’t think so. They have devised a plan to first roll out these vehicles into less populated, more predictable areas of the country. According to 55 Places, one of these proposals is for the technology to debut within retirement communities. These communities offer businesses predictable areas to test and upgrade their technologies. It can also be very beneficial to the residents as the vehicles could transport them to their doctor’s appointment or simply to the pharmacy to pick up their medicine. Rural areas can also provide great opportunities for autonomous development, and many also look forward to the further development of autonomous technologies for warehouses, farms and other places of work.

Though we may be years away from actually being able to pick up a self-driving taxi in New York, the pursuit of this goal becomes more real each and every day. Many challenges and obstacles will be faced on the way, but there is no doubt that the tech community is moving toward a real future in self-driving vehicles.

How Technology is Transforming the Modern Classroom

When you think about the impressive advancements the world has made, you can’t help but think of the children. Depending on your age, you might recall waiting for your mom to get off the phone before you could use the internet or the first time you saw a smartphone. In any case, information and technology are still advancing at an astounding rate. Children will have access to this at their fingertips, and virtual reality (VR) technology introduces us to a world that could not be considered before now.

The Classroom of 10 Years Ago

Ten years doesn’t seem like a lot of time in the grand scheme of education. But, schools have seen some impressive strides as teachers have discovered how to implement technology into their day-to-day routines. Let’s take the introduction of mobile devices as a start. Today, a student can take a phone with them and utilize the world wide web to look up any piece of information they want. Technology is also helping kids learn how to read. In addition, remote learning is a powerful tool which is introducing the idea of learning wherever you are at from a teacher.

Addressing Concerns

As the environment changes, it is only natural to have concerns over something that is not familiar. According to Teach Thought, there is some speculation and debate as to the disappearance of letter grades, tests and traditional schedules. As the needs of our society changes, so will the classroom. Even today, we see that our educational system does not always meet societal demands.

Technology Is Teaching Real Skills

There is a website or application for literally anything you can think of. Those who have access to this powerful system are able to teach themselves anything. However, there are people who would tell you that you shouldn’t fix something that isn’t broken. They’d say educators should stick with the old system, using things like standardized tests and traditional classrooms and textbook methods. But, your ability to take in information and split it out onto another piece of paper is not a real skill. Particularly in the digital age, students need to be equipped with important technological skills that will allow them to thrive in the workforce, according to Instructure.

Blended Education

Having a blended classroom is more common than ever. It is virtually impossible to walk into a college campus and expect a 100% offline class. Many times, this can simply be limited to submitting your work online, but it also goes beyond that with online educational platforms that allow the student to access their schedule and announcements at any time. Even in the earlier grades, we are seeing that students are adopting this hybrid learning platform, which has a good deal of success when placed into practice, according to Education Next. But some students may not have the opportunity to even go to a classroom.

Remote Learning

This brings us to the next portion: remote learning. Remote learning is a concept that was on the radar around 10 years ago, but it was not placed into practice until just recently. Today, you can find a number of different pieces of dedicated education software that allow you to learn at your own pace. There are online schools you can use to teach yourself coding, online colleges that allow you to get a Doctorate, and ways in which teachers can teach new languages to students in other countries. The potential cost reduction of paper waste provides for exciting considerations as well. Like with most new platforms, it is always important to stay safe. With new technology comes new potential exposures to risk.

VR Learning

While remote learning is an exciting concept, it doesn’t quite capture the feeling that one gets when being there in a classroom. This brings us to a particularly exciting concept: VR Learning. For many parts of the world, this is still in the early stages. We can see that VR is here, and many video games, movies and interactive experiences use VR technology in a commercial environment. But the educational applications of this platform are astounding. According to Touchstone Research, there are many companies who are making the jump into VR education. Companies like Discovery, Google and Schell Games are a few such examples. These people are producing everything from making you feel like you are inside of a lecture hall to exploring the deep parts of space.

What Does the Future Hold?

There are those who would make you believe that we are on the verge of some dystopian world where nobody talks to others anymore. They’re also concerned that education is going to become a large collection of padded rooms and kids wearing VR helmets playing pretend catch. It is alright to be concerned about the future, and it will be important to express moderation to those in charge. But, the potential is impressive. Ten years ago, we could not have imagined such a heavily mobile world that we have now. With information available at your fingertips, we have clearly stepped into the information age. This is particularly true for our children, who are moving into a world where they will be merged into having a tablet as a regular accessory in their classroom.

Maybe your classroom didn’t have this, so you find the idea to be scary. This is fine, new things are always frightening at first. But with the potential that comes with new technology, we have the opportunity to embrace learning in many different styles. It is exciting, terrifying and inspiring to witness, but this transformation is ours to control.

 

6 Health Gadgets to Help You Live Your Best Life

Health gadgets are wildly popular items nowadays as people become more aware of, not just their physical health, but also their mental and emotional health. With this new awareness, consumers want to find the best new technology that can help them live a long, healthy life. Here are several health gadgets that can transform your health for the better. 

Wearable Fitness Trackers

Today’s society loves gadgets and wearables. Fitbit, for example, made a big difference in getting people up and walking. Now a whole market of personal wearable fitness trackers has emerged out of nowhere with Fitbit as the pioneer. The Fitbit Charge 3 and the Versa are still the top Fitbit products on the market. The Fitbit Charge 3 is a thin, lightweight fitness tracker, while the Fitbit Versa combines the versatility of a smartwatch and a tracker.

Metabolism Tracking Devices

There is a huge interest in health and wellness devices in the past few years. One of the devices that provides this service is the Lumen Metabolism Tracking Device. Lumen can help you measure the nutrients you are taking in every day. The device needs to be paired with an app on your phone. Lumen will then analyze your breath. With your breath, Lumen can tell you if you are burning carbohydrates or fat. Lumen can also give you tips such as if you need to sleep more, change your eating hours, and also how your food choices today will affect you the next day.

Medical Alert Systems

Medical alert systems can make a huge difference in today’s society. Some top performers in this category include the Medical Guardian and Bay Alarm Medical system. Most medical alert systems combine a wearable with a monitoring base that can be set up at home. The wearable pairs with a monitoring base that is set up at home and preprogrammed with options in case of an emergency, such as calling medical personnel or sending emergency vehicles. Medical Guardian has a shorter response time compared to other units in the market.

VR Goggles

Mental health and technology have often been at odds with each other. However, in this instance, technology has created something extraordinary to add to your meditation sessions. Virtual reality mediation sessions are a new way to feel an immersive meditative experience. 

You will need to stock up on two items if you wish to give virtual reality meditation a try. First, you’ll need VR goggles. Second, you’ll need to download a VR meditation app onto your phone. Your phone will be inserted into the VR goggles, which go over your head and across your eyes. One of the most well-rated VR goggles is the inexpensive Google Cardboard VR Goggles. It is made out of cardboard but is enough to give most people an idea of what VR meditation is like.

Essential Oil Diffusers

Aromatherapy essential oil diffusers have become more popular these days as consumers search for natural, health-conscious ways to alleviate pain, stress, and anxiety. Since essential oils are known for its therapeutic results and have practically no side effects, newer and more efficient diffusers have entered the market. 

There are four main diffusers out on the market currently. These are:

  •  Ultrasonic Diffusers
  •  Atomizer Diffusers
  •  Heated Diffusers
  •  Fan Diffusers

One of the most popular diffusers on the market is the AromaMist Ultrasonic Diffuser. The AromaMist Ultrasonic Diffuser is easy to use and stays extremely quiet in the background. When the water is low, the unit has a built-in shut-off function. The diffuser will release a cold mist containing essential oil microparticles into the air.

Sanitizing Travel Wand

When it comes to sanitizing wands, the Verilux CleanWave Portable UV Sanitizing Travel Wand is the original sanitizing wand to appear in consumer markets. 

Sanitizing wands use UV rays to kill 99.9% of surface-level germs and bacteria. UV rays will not penetrate deep surfaces, but they will disinfect and sterilize germs on the surface of a train seat, food court seat, faucets and doorknobs, remote control, or even the surface of your hotel bed and blanket. Since Verilux CleanWave Portable UV Sanitizing Travel Wand made its debut, many others have begun showing up in stores, giving consumers more choices and options.

Technology has come a long way to bridge the gap between high tech and everyday gadgets, as more and more technology becomes accessible to everyday consumers. With a new awareness of health and wellness, health gadgets have become one of the top categories for health-conscious individuals. 

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5 Careers for the Technology Enthusiast

Obtaining an education in technology is one of the best things today’s youth can do. Let’s face it, the workforce of the future will definitely consist of tech jobs. However, new graduates often find that choosing a job in tech is a lot harder than they previously thought. Tech covers a wide range of fields, so today we will showcase the five best careers for the technology enthusiast.

Data Engineer

Big data, as we all know, is becoming more and more necessary in the world of business. They are data architects who process and build data as well as aid in the surfacing of data for large-scale applications. Therefore, data engineers will no doubt be in high demand. So, what do you need for this title? First, you must obtain a bachelor’s degree in computer science. During your education, don’t be afraid to go asking for internships within a company. This will come in handy once you graduate as your experience can definitely help you land a job. Data engineers can make up to $130K a year, according to Stitch Data.

Mobile App Designer

Another in-demand job in tech is a designer for mobile applications. According to Independence University, you’ll need experience in and knowledge of graphic design. This also means having a clear understanding of coding and dealing with a user interface. Many who obtain a career in this area first seek to educate themselves by obtaining a degree or certificate in computer science or similar areas such as management information systems. Having these skills can help you stand out in the crowd when applying for jobs. Designers looking to get into the indie scene may be paid $1,500 to $2,000 a month while designers working for a large corporation can see their salary be as much as $100K a year.

Software Engineering Manager

Let’s say that you’ve had years of experience in the technology sector, and you’ve done it all. So, what is the next step? Becoming a Software Engineering Manager allows you to use all your years of experience to lead a tech team. Many of these positions do require a certain number of years in tech as well as experience in leading roles. Large organizations will also require a certain level of education, such as a bachelor’s or even a master’s degree in computer science. Software engineering managers can see making up to 100K per year.

Cloud Engineer

The cloud is becoming more and more popular among small and large businesses. As a result, companies will be looking to bring on people who are knowledgeable in maintaining and developing cloud technology. This is not an entry-level job. Therefore many organizations will ask you to obtain both a certain number of years of experience in tech and a bachelor’s degree in computer science or a related field. However, the work is worth it as this specific position comes with a salary of over $100K plus a year, according to Payscale.

Data Scientist

As businesses continue to focus on big data, they will eventually need someone to analyze said data. The great thing about this position is that tech companies are not the only ones looking to hire; every type of business is now moving to big data to increase their sales. Many of these positions do require at least a master’s and or PhD in the fields of science, math and IT. On the high end, a data scientist can earn up to $180K per year, according to Team Blind.

While many of these positions do require a certain level of education, the good news is that a variety of resources are available today to help you begin applying for lower-level positions. Not only will you be paid for something you love, but you’ll also be adding experience to your resume, a much-needed requirement for most tech positions.