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Your Uber trip can help change lives

first_imgBefore, Uber would round down each passenger’s fare to the nearest rand. Now, with UberGiving, those cents are instead donated to good causes. (Image: Uber)South African non-profits are hailing the benefit of taxicab app Uber’s charitable giving. UberGiving allows the company and its passengers to donate to worthy causes.Before, Uber would round down each passenger’s fare to the nearest rand. Now, with UberGiving, those cents are instead donated to good causes. The new system does not cost the drivers, who will still earn 80% of each fare.The Reach for a Dream Foundation, which fulfils the dreams of children with life-threatening diseases, was the first beneficiary of Uber passengers’ generosity. It helped the foundation take passionate football fan Elihle Momoza, a 12-year-old with a blood disorder, to Moses Mabhida stadium for the first time. It also gave him a PlayStation with football games.UberGiving helped Faith Nifang, an eight-year-old with sickle cell anaemia, to live his special dream of a day at the beach by spending a weekend at Sun City, where he enjoyed the playground activities and the Valley of the Waves.“The magnitude of his smile said it all that day,” said Alon Lits, GM of Uber in sub-Saharan Africa.“We are honoured to be associated with Reach for a Dream, helping to assist children like Faith and Elihle. These are just some of the dreams that were made possible through UberGiving and the Reach for a Dream Foundation.”A great startUberGiving’s charitable drive has benefitted other non-profits as well. It helped the Tomorrow Trust, an educational NGO, to fund Mahlogonolo Pasha’s BSc studies in Life and Environmental Sciences at the University of Johannesburg.Pasha, from a family of five children raised by a single unemployed mother, dreams of becoming the first university graduate in her family. Education, she believes, will end their cycle of poverty.The Els for Autism Foundation is another UberGiving beneficiary. The charity was established in 2009 by golfer Ernie Els and his wife Liezl Els after their son Ben was diagnosed with severe autism.Their foundation funds an Autism Centre of Excellence, which gives under-resourced families of autistic children free access to evidence-based interventions.Other non-profits that have benefited from UberGiving include the Blow the Whistle initiative and the Desmond Tutu HIV Foundation.“We are proud to support these organisations, to help them continue the good work they do,” said Lits. “A special thanks goes out to all those riders using the Uber platform, by simply requesting a trip each of you are making a difference, and every little bit counts.”For more information, visit www.uber.com or connect with them on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.last_img read more

Dave McClure’s 500 Startups Unveils Its Accelerator Program

first_imgRelated Posts Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Six months after the launch of its early-stage investment fund, 500 Startups is announcing its accelerator program, a three to six month program that will give early-stage startups funding, a workspace, and access to a vast network of mentors.That network is thanks, no doubt, to its founder, angel investor Dave McClure. Coverage of today’s announcement by 500 Startups is bound to use a variety of descriptors for McClure, but I’ll settle with this one: huge cheerleader for startups. And the network of over 120 mentors for 500 Startups Accelerator is a testament to that.At this stage, the program doesn’t have an open application process. “That might come,” says McClure. Currently, the startups participating are there due to recommendations from that very network of mentors. Participants in the accelerator program receive funding from $25,000 to $100,000, in exchange for 5% equity. They receive a space in 500 Startup’s new workspace in Mountain View, California. And at the end of their stint in the program, they’ll get chance to participate in a pitch day, the first of which is scheduled for April 6 and 7.The curriculum for the accelerator program, which focuses on “design, data and distribution,” will be provided by some of those in 500 Startup’s mentor network. Some will be speakers, some will hold office hours, some will offer one-to-one mentoring, and a number will be “Mentors in Residence,” with their offices alongside startups’ workspaces. McClure says that the new accelerator program shares some things in common with other similar programs, but he insists that there are some things that’ll make 500 Startup Accelerator quite different. We’d hardly expect otherwise.The startups participating in the program’s first cadre include InternMatch, Baydin, 955 Dreams , YongoPal, Spoondate, Ninua, Crowdrally, Wednesdays, and SpeakerGram. Tags:#start#tips center_img 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… audrey watterslast_img read more

Meet VoLTE, The Future Of Phone Calls

first_imgThe Rise and Rise of Mobile Payment Technology When LTE debuted in the U.S., carriers had to figure out how to make voice calls work while pushing out 4G smartphones to customers. Most carriers adopted a stopgap measure called “circuit-switch fallback” in which LTE handles all data connections, but phones call back to the 3G network when you make a call. VoLTE effectively obsoletes this hybrid technology.VoIP vs. VoLTEYou might look at your smartphone and say, “Hey, I can already make voice calls over my data connection! I have Skype and Google Hangouts!” It is true, you can indeed make voice calls using your data connection with these apps, which are referred in the cellular industry as “over-the-top” (OTT) services because they supersede a carrier’s own voice and messaging services.You may be using LTE to make voice calls with these apps, but you’re not using VoLTE. Services like Skype, Hangouts, WebEx or Fuze are what is called Voice Over Internet Protocol—VoIP. These services work on your 3G or 4G LTE devices because they use your data connection through the Internet, not the traditional voice network from the carriers.As U.S. cellular carriers networks evolve, VoLTE will compete with more directly with OTT services like Skype.Benefits Of VoLTET-Mobile is one of the first cellular carriers in the United States to institute VoLTE phone calls on a limited range of smartphones, starting in Seattle. In an announcement last week, T-Mobile chief technology officer Neville Ray described the technology behind the company’s VoLTE offering:If you’re like me and love digging into the underlying science, here’s how it works. (If this doesn’t interest you, feel free to skip this bit.) VoLTE calls will be carried over IP [Internet protocol, or packet switching] on our LTE network instead of a circuit-switched path on our 4G HSPA+ network. This is advantageous because your phone stays on our wicked fast LTE network to make a call. The tricky bit in all this is the smooth mobility between our various radio layers. Enhanced Single Radio Voice Call Continuity (eSRVCC) is a new LTE Advanced function and we’re excited to be the first to deploy it in the U.S. All of this basically helps ensure that your capable phone won’t drop a call if you leave an LTE area and it switches to 4G HSPA+ or 2G coverage.Technologies like Enhanced Single Radio Voice Call Continuity are fancy terms used to described the central tenet of VoLTE. For the first time, voice and data will be living together in harmony on the same radio layer, meaning that smartphones won’t need to displace back to 3G or a different spectrum frequency to handle both capabilities.See also: Why Your Cell-Phone Bill Should Be Going Down—But Isn’tWhat this means is that, as LTE is expanded in the U.S., old 3G networks like CDMA or HSPA+ will wither away. Verizon said last year that it will begin phasing out its 3G network at the start of 2014 and other U.S. carriers are planning similar rollbacks. The future of voice and data in the U.S. is LTE (and future advancements, like LTE Advanced), and carriers see no need to maintain costly old infrastructure. Why IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfaces Related Posts What it Takes to Build a Highly Secure FinTech … Role of Mobile App Analytics In-App Engagementcenter_img If you haven’t already, soon you’re going to be hearing a lot about a new standard for making mobile phone calls: VoLTE. It stands for “voice over LTE,” but what it really means is that before long, your voice calls are going to be transmitted across the airwaves using the same technology the Internet pioneered for data. See also: Why Your Cellphone Bill Should Be Going Down—But Isn’tVoLTE, an acronym sure to be coming soon to a mobile-phone advertisement near you, promises two immediate potential benefits to consumers: clearer calls with fewer dropouts and the ability to use voice and data services simultaneously (which some, but not all, carriers offer already). For the carriers, it means more efficient use of their allocated radio spectrum, meaning they can serve more customers without additional network investments.(What VoLTE almost certainly won’t do is lower your phone bill, as carriers have a habit of charging more for network improvements that actually save them money.)To understand how VoLTE is supposed to manage all these improvements, you have to understand why traditional LTE couldn’t carry voice.Circuit Switched Vs. Packet SwitchedLTE is the current gold standard for mobile data (it stands for “long term evolution”), although you may know it better as “4G.” LTE makes it possible to download or stream Internet video far faster than its predecessor 3G networks—but as it stands, LTE doesn’t carry voice calls. Instead, carriers with LTE fall back to older 2G and 3G networks for calls.Voice over LTE will change that.LTE’s speed advantage stems from the way it handles data. 3G network standards like UMTS and CDMA basically open a dedicated channel between nodes to handle voice, text and data, a technique called “circuit switching.” This is a simple, but fairly expensive practice in network terms; it’s as if you got a dedicated lane for your morning commute that no one else could use. Great for you; terrible for everyone else.See also: Meet The “Real” 4GLTE, by contrast, is based on an Internet technology called packet switching. In such networks, a sender divides up any sort of data—email, Web pages, a Netflix stream—into small packets of equal size, each of which carries an “address label” bearing its ultimate destination. The sender tosses these packets onto the network, where they’re directed toward their destination at every juncture, or “node.” They ultimately all meet up at their destination, where they’re reassembled and delivered to the recipient.This is a lot more like your actual morning commute, in which you have to share the road with everyone else heading somewhere. Like your commute, packet switching sounds a bit haphazard, and it can be—but it’s also a fantastically efficient, flexible and robust way of transmitting information. Until now, though, it wasn’t any use for mobile voice calls, which still require circuits (and circuit switching). Tags:#4G#Apple#AT&T#cable#Carriers#Cell phones#Google#lte#Microsoft#Skype#smartphone#Spectrum#Sprint#T-Mobile#verizon dan rowinski The cellular operators are just starting their marketing campaigns around the evolution of LTE. T-Mobile claims what it calls “HD Voice” (clear voice calls over cellular) and Verizon claims to be rolling out what it calls XLTE, which is basically just extra spectrum for its existing LTE network to operate. Sprint’s Spark network isn’t an advance of LTE either, just a new mode of how it aggregates its various spectrum and varieties of LTE (TD-LTE and FD-LTE) into a more efficient package than its previous 4G offerings. Smartphone manufacturers will benefit by the ability to trim how many radio receivers they place in smartphones. Instead of needing to support disparate networks with a variety of chipsets, they can just rollout phones with chipsets directed at specific carrier spectrum requirements. For consumers, the benefit is harder to see. VoLTE will fix the unwelcome problem of not being able to use voice and data on a phone at the same time for some carriers, and calls may be clearer and less prone to be dropped going forward. VoLTE is an important evolutionary step in mobile computing, but it’s still possible that many consumers will hardly notice the change.  last_img read more

Delivering Community-Based Nutrition Education Programs

first_imgThe Nutrition and Wellness concentration area of the Military Families Learning Network (MFLN) addresses the preventative and medical nutrition needs of the military and their families. Professionals working with military families are provided education and resources by MFLN Nutrition and Wellness through synthesizing, integrating, and applying research updates with innovative educational and counseling strategies.Professionals working with military families can also turn to the Cooperative Extension System when looking for education and resources addressing nutrition. Partnered with National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA), the Cooperative Extension provides nutrition education programs that help individuals, families, and communities nationwide.Curious to see what your state Extension has to offer for Nutrition programs? Listed below are the 7 pilot program states:Florida Cooperative Extension Indiana Cooperative ExtensionMaryland Cooperative ExtensionMississippi Cooperative ExtensionMinnesota Cooperative ExtensionNew Mexico Cooperative ExtensionOklahoma Cooperative ExtensionDon’t see your state listed above? Here is a nationwide directory to help: Food, Nutrition and Affiliated Areas State Extension Directorylast_img read more