“Brighten” Someone’s Day In Seconds with this Anti-Bullying App

Austin Kevitch was in high school when he first came up with the idea for an app that would allow users to send compliments to each other anonymously. But it wasn’t until tragedy struck years later that he decided to turn that idea into reality.

Kevitch was studying abroad in South Africa when his friend, Oliver Pacchiana, died in a rock climbing accident. Soon after, positive and loving messages flooded Pacchiana’s Facebook wall. The tributes moved Kevitch deeply, and he imagined how much they would have meant to his friend if he’d received them while he was alive.

“Just hearing one of those comments could change your life,” said Kevitch, now 25 and the CEO of the app Brighten. “I learned a lot about him just from what people were sharing. It was a wake-up call that the world needs something like [Brighten].”

Today, Kevitch runs Brighten out of Santa Monica, California, with a six-person staff. The app, downloaded over 1 million times since its 2015 release, allows users to send out anonymous compliments called “brightens,” although Kevitch says most people choose to identify themselves. Users can also send a snapshot of their smile to the person who complimented them.

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People Are Finding It Hard to Focus on Work Right Now

donald trump 1818950 640 300x240 People Are Finding It Hard to Focus on Work Right NowA survey finds that nearly a third of people say they have been less productive since the election.

Months before the election, there were reports of greater political tension in offices than in previous election cycles. In one survey from the American Psychological Association, 10 percent of respondents said that political discussions at work led to stress, feeling cynical, difficulty finishing work, lower work quality, and diminished productivity.

Now, a new survey commissioned by BetterWorks—a software company that helps workers with setting and tracking goals—finds that post-election, politics is continuing to take a toll on workplace productivity. The online survey included 500 nationally representative, full-time American workers, and found that 87 percent of them read political social-media posts during the day, and nearly 50 percent reported seeing a political conversation turning into an argument in the workplace. Twenty-nine percent of respondents say they’ve been less productive since the election.

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Not even Donald Trump can save Twitter

social 1834013 640 300x300 Not even Donald Trump can save TwitterSince taking office on January 20, President Donald Trump has tweeted more than 120 times to his 24 million followers. But while Twitter has never had more geopolitical importance or market-moving potential, with the leader of the free world preferring to make incendiary and often false statements on his personal Twitter account, the platform being used to deliver those messages is still struggling.

Twitter’s stock tumbled by as much as 10 percent in pre-market trading after delivering fourth-quarter earnings results Thursday morning that disappointed Wall Street. The social-media company missed analysts’ expectations for revenue, with revenue of just $717 million compared to estimates of $740 million. Advertising spend on the platform lagged behind growth in daily users, which grew 11 percent year over year. In line with analyst expectations, Twitter’s monthly active users grew from 317 million last quarter to 319 million, but it did not disclose figures for daily usage.

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5 Cybersecurity Lessons Learned from the Super Bowl

Football 300x200 5 Cybersecurity Lessons Learned from the Super BowlThe NFL’s biggest game – and one of the largest sporting events on the planet offered millions the chance to be entertained for a few hours. Fans were glued to their television sets to experience the drama, the competition and the showmanship. Were they thinking about cyber threats? Probably not. But, surprisingly, business owners can learn some valuable lessons about cybersecurity from the Super Bowl.

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Your Browsing History Alone Can Give Away Your Identity

computer 1185637 640 300x199 Your Browsing History Alone Can Give Away Your Identity Advertisers would give just about anything to be able to lurk over your shoulder as you browse the internet. They want to know what sites you visit, how you get to them, how long you spend on them, and where you go next—along with as much personal information about you as they can get.

Of course, they don’t have to be in the room to figure any of that out. Dozens of trackers embedded in nearly every website collect information about how you interact with the page, and cookies stored in your browser tell advertisers how often you’ve visited the site before. But the holy grail is the ability to string all this information together to create profiles that corresponds to each individual user—that is, creating a complete picture of each person on the internet, beyond just scattered data points.

Companies that compile user profiles generally do so pseudonymously: they may know a lot of demographic details about you, but they don’t usually connect your behavior to your individual identity. But a group of researchers at Stanford and Princeton developed a system that can connect your profile to your name and identity, just by examining your browsing history.

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