By Guest Nicole
A robotic figure interacts with members of the media during a press event for CES 2017 at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas. Alex Wong/Getty Images
Anna Choi of Neofect demonstrates the Rapael Smart Glove therapy device for stroke victims at CES. REUTERS/Rick Wilking
The Hover Camera Passport drone uses facial recognition software to automatically follow the user around and shoot video. AP Photo/John Locher
Remi, a smart alarm clock, at the Urban Hello booth. David Becker/Getty Images
An attendee takes a photograph of himself wearing the R-9 augmented reality glasses manufactured by Osterhout Design Group. David Paul Morris/Bloomberg
The Crazy Baby Mars True Audio Levitating Wireless Speaker. DAVID MCNEW/AFP/Getty Images
A show-goer tries out the YouCam Makeup mirror which shows different make up without actually applying any. REUTERS/Rick Wilking
A Laka smart toy and app to benefit special needs children. DAVID MCNEW/AFP/Getty Images
Chad Kresser demonstrates a prototype VR headset at the Lenovo booth. The VR headset tracks head movements using cameras in the headset. AP Photo/John Locher
A Wink PTU 360-degree spherical camera with an Android phone. DAVID MCNEW/AFP/Getty Images
A Faraday Future FF 91 electric car. REUTERS/Steve Marcus
The Bloomlife Smart Pregnancy Tracker counts labor contractions at home. REUTERS/Rick Wilking
Werner Struth, member of the board of management of Robert Bosch GmbH, talks about Mykie, a personal assistant for the kitchen. REUTERS/Steve Marcus
More pictures here
By Guest Nicole
From 1 January, workers have ‘right to disconnect’ as France seeks to establish agreements that afford work flexibility but avoid burnout
The ‘right to disconnect’ measure is intended to tackle a 24/7 work culture that has led to a surge in usually unpaid overtime. Photograph: Getty Images/PhotoAlto
From Sunday, French companies will be required to guarantee their employees a “right to disconnect” from technology as the country seeks to tackle the modern-day scourge of compulsive out-of-hours email checking.
On 1 January, an employment law will enter into force that obliges organisations with more than 50 workers to start negotiations to define the rights of employees to ignore their smartphones.
Overuse of digital devices has been blamed for everything from burnout to sleeplessness as well as relationship problems, with many employees uncertain of when they can switch off.
The measure is intended to tackle the so-called “always-on” work culture that has led to a surge in usually unpaid overtime – while also giving employees flexibility to work outside the office.
“There’s a real expectation that companies will seize on the ‘right to disconnect’ as a protective measure,” said Xavier Zunigo, a French workplace expert, as a new survey on the subject was published in October.
“At the same time, workers don’t want to lose the autonomy and flexibility that digital devices give them,” added Zunigo, who is an academic and director of research group Aristat.
The measure was introduced by labour minister Myriam El Khomri, who commissioned a report submitted in September 2015 which warned about the health impact of “info-obesity” which afflicts many workplaces.
Under the new law, companies will be obliged to negotiate with employees to agree on their rights to switch off and ways they can reduce the intrusion of work into their private lives.
If a deal cannot be reached, the company must publish a charter that would make explicit the demands on, and rights of, employees out-of-hours.
Trade unions which see themselves as guardians of France’s highly protected workplace and working week of 35 hours have long demanded action. However, the new “right to disconnect”, part of a much larger and controversial reform of French labour law, foresees no sanction for companies which fail to define it.
French newspaper Libération praised the move in an editorial on Friday, saying the law was needed because “employees are often judged on their commitment to their companies and their availability”.
Some large groups such as Volkswagen and Daimler in Germany or nuclear power company Areva and insurer Axa in France have already taken steps to limit out-of-hours messaging to reduce burnout among workers.
Some measures include cutting email connections in the evening and weekends or even destroying emails automatically that are sent to employees while they are on holiday.
A study published by French research group Eleas in October showed that more than a third of French workers used their devices to do work out-of-hours every day. About 60% of workers were in favour of regulation to clarify their rights.
But computing and work-life balance expert Anna Cox from University of College London (UCL) said companies must take into account demands from employees for both protection and flexibility. “For some people, they want to work for two hours every evening, but want to be able to switch off between 3 and 5pm when they pick their kids up and are cooking dinner,” she said. Others are happy to use their daily commute to get ahead before they arrive in the office, she explained.
Furthermore, she said the world of work was changing as rapidly as the technology, with more and more employees working remotely or with colleagues in other time zones. “Some of the challenges that come with flexibility are managing those boundaries between work and home and being able to say ‘actually I am not working now’,” she said.
One of the positive effects of the law will be to encourage “conversations with people working together about what their expectations are”, said Cox.
By Guest Nicole
I just spoke with my friend, she is a need greater and is serving in a rural place where there is no electricity, and conditions are not ok, so bad that she told me that she honestly does not imagine me visiting there, although I visit her everywhere she goes...the thing is that the small congregation of around 20 publishers was smart and attending the regional convention was so expensive for them that they decided to buy a modern second hand TV at a bargain price. They had the 3 days regional convention virtually, using a generator, the elder downloaded the assembly program, despite it being an assembly with a different accent they still enjoyed it. There is another story behind to get the generator working, the computer and cable that connects the computer to the TV, but I don't want to make a large story, it is clear that Jehovah helped them.
My point is that I am glad they are using technology, that is how it should be, and not making people spend money they don't have and making them feel bad when they are not able to attend assemblies due to money problems.
By Guest Nicole
Silicon Valley's Aloft Cupertino hotel, just spitting distance from Apple's headquarters near San Francisco, presented their newest high-tech employee, Wednesday, introducing Botlr the robotic butler.
By Guest Nicole
Published on Apr 11, 2016
It turns out that FBI director James Comey covers his laptop camera with tape, just like any NSA-fearing citizen should - an admission that has generated hilarity on social media.