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Wondering how many solar eclipses there have been since the day you were born? How about when your next birthday on Mercury is? Perhaps you want to know how much Earth’s population has changed since your very special day.
You can answer these questions and more at BBC Earth with this interactive tool — you just plug in your birthdate, height, and gender, and you’ll get all sorts of interesting facts about our planet, as it relates to your lifespan.
“Find out how,” says the BBC site, “since the date of your birth, your life has progressed; including how many times your heart has beaten, and how far you have travelled through space.”
Plenty of people have offered their thoughts and opinions about Microsoft’s Surface devices after the company unveiled the two tablets earlier this week. One particular thread of conversation has been what Surface means for the iPad in businesses and enterprises. One piece that stood out to me was Justin Watt’s blog post Goliath Wants David’s Market.
Watt offers an interesting and well written argument that Surface may find success in many companies because they are still using legacy applications and processes – some of which may have originated long before Windows XP and OS X and have been patched countless times to over the years or decades to continue functioning. His core argument is that many iPad users access these tools using virtual desktop solutions like Citrix Receiver. As a result, at least for some tasks, the iPad functions as a Windows tablet. That could give Surface and other Windows tablets an edge over the iPad if they can directly deal with the legacy code involved or deliver the same virtual desktop experience.
The truth, however, is that many companies are chugging along on legacy solutions that were never designed to work with devices like the iPad. In fact, some widely used legacy systems have roots that weren’t even designed to work with Windows! In many companies, IT has been able to keep the age and state of those systems under wraps. But the iPad, and now the iPad versus Surface discussion, is now pushing that dirty little secret into the light of day.
As technology and always-connected devices become more pervasive in our daily lives, companies, think-tanks, government agencies, non-profits, and other organizations have access tremendous new pools of information about virtually anything on the planet. The challenge of such a “big data” world is how to aggregate that information, analyse it, make substantive conclusions, and then package in a useful form.
Making sense of data and communicating the results in a concise and effective manner is such a big challenge that many organizations will pay research firms and think-tanks to analyse and package data form them – often as static snapshots with pages of text and charts and accompanying PowerPoint files.
The ability to access real-time data in a useful way is one of the things that makes MeLLmo’s iPad app Roambi a great business intelligence tool. Today, however, the company announced that it’s taking Roambi a step further and allowing companies to turn the Roambi’s dynamic and interactive data dashboards into full-fledged iOS apps in their own right and market them in the App Store.