The Five Biggest Things In Tech You Missed This Week: 11/21


(This post originally appeared on Forbes)

Here are five things that happened in the world of technology this past week and why they’re important for your business (and mine). Did you miss them?

1 – In the wake of the Paris attacks security and privacy again dominate the front page.

Hillary Clinton is demanding help from social media companies to combat terrorism and Microsoft says itwill create a Cyber Defense Operations Center and anEnterprise Cybersecurity Group for a rapid response to security threats.

Why this is important for your business:

As big as Facebook and Twitter are, they’re going to have a struggle standing up to the continuing pressures from the U.S. government for data needed to combat terrorism.  Which means that more of your company’s and your customers’ information will likely be available to the Feds in the years to come.  And as data breaches and hacks become more frequent and more expensive, Microsoft’s new initiatives should be help for those of us that rely on their products.

2 – Bitcoin is under significant pressure.

Even as venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins makes its first bitcoin start-up investment, the attacks in Paris are forcing many European nations to crack down on Bitcoin to impede terrorist financing.

Why this is important for your business:

Bitcoin, and variations of it, have become extremely popular as an alternative currency and is accepted by many online merchants.  Unfortunately, it’s also become the  currency of choice for criminals and terrorists because of its untraceability. The debate over whether or not to accept bitcoin has been raging over the past few years.  Thinking of accepting bitcoin in your business?  Already do? Incidents like the Paris attacks will only further the argument against these tyupes of digital currencies.

3 – Payments firm Square has a successful IPO.

Per Reuters:

“Shares of Square Inc, the mobile payments company co-founded and still run by Twitter Inc Chief Executive Jack Dorsey, soared as much as 64 percent in their market debut, following a marked-down initial public offering, countering the negative sentiment that has nagged at Silicon Valley startups in recent weeks.”

Why this is important for your business:

Twitter, GoPro, and Fitbit shares have all sunk belowtheir IPO prices and the market for tech public offerings has become more difficult.  The more capital and opportunities that American tech companies like Square have to raise cash and expand their technologies, the more our companies benefit from the technologies they develop.

4 – Silicon Valley will host the 2016 Global Entrepreneurship Summit.

Per this report:

“U.S. President Barack Obama announced that Silicon Valley will be the next host for the 2016 Global Entrepreneurship Summit. The annual conference, which first took place in Washington, D.C., has since convened innovators and leaders across sectors in Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, Malaysia, Morocco, and most recently, Kenya. This summer, Obama will lead the U.S. delegation to join 1,000 attendees in ‘the birthplace of modern innovation.’”

Why this is important for your business:

Many argue that entrepreneurship in America is on the decline. GEW brings worldwide attention to start-ups and entrepreneurs each year with significant corporate and political support.  Basing it in Silicon Valley highlights our tech sector and will hopefully draw even more interest in U.S. tech companies and the products they’re creating.

5 – Google Hangouts becomes even easier.

Google Hangouts will now let users be called without a Google account.

Why this is important for your business:

Many business owners have enjoyed group chats on services like Google Hangouts – and many others are benefiting from the enormous opportunities created by “free TV stations” that Google Hangouts on Air can provide.  One of Hangouts’ biggest handicaps is the need for a Google ID or Gmail address.  By removing this barrier, look for the use of this platform to dramatically increase.

And finally – a hats off to this genius developer who has created an easy way to block all Kardashian content from his customers’ iPhones.  Thank you, sir.  Thank you.


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