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Archive for October, 2011

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October 31st, 2011

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween!

It’s that time of year again! Fall (or winter, as we’ve already had our first snow in Boston) is in the air, pumpkins are carved, and little kids everywhere are getting ready to fill their bags with mounds of candy.

Although all of us here at Prompt are a bit too old to go trick-or-treating tonight, the Cambridge Innovation Center is still letting us engage in the Halloween spirit. As an annual tradition, children of CIC tenants dress up and walk around the building, stopping at offices that have signed up to give away candy.

As you can see, we’re fully stocked and excited to see all of the costumes! Nothing’s better than making kids happy with an assortment of candy, as well as sneaking a few pieces for ourselves.

Be safe and have a happy Halloween!

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Posted in Boston, Events, Prompt locations | 1 Comment »

 

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October 25th, 2011

Of course they did: MIT develops radar to see through walls

Of course they did: MIT develops radar to see through walls

At some point we’ve all thought about having super powers. If not as a child, then as an adult – namely the ability to make all your work disappear. I’ve always wanted to be invisible. That seemed unique enough that you wouldn’t find it being mass developed in my life time, unlike a power such as x-ray vision. And thanks to MIT, the most difficult aspect of x-ray vision, seeing through walls, appears to have been overcome.

Researchers at the Lincoln Laboratory have developed new technology, for use primarily in urban combat situations that will allow users to see through walls. Surprisingly, getting the radar to transmit through the walls was not the most difficult part. Instead, making sure the images that came back from the transmission were seen in real-time was the biggest challenge. But thanks to some intelligent filtering, images are now coming through at an acceptable 10.8 frames per second.

Essentially, through computers hooked up to the radar rigs, the device is able to filter out the signals that come back showing the wall and only display the moving objects behind it. Even if a person is standing still, their body is moving slightly and the radar waves will be powerful enough to pick up any movement, up to 60 feet away.

Even though the team behind the technology stated its main use is for urban combat areas, it could potentially be used by emergency response teams. With such advances its only a matter of time before a working invisibility suit comes out and all our childhood super hero dreams come true.

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October 19th, 2011

Media bytes: The New York Times expands online

Media bytes: The New York Times expands online

As a tech PR and comms company, we’re always following the changes in the media world. Our goal is to gain visibility for our clients and the work they do, so when a new publication, or a new blog, or a new section to a newspaper is announced, we take note.

Yesterday, Tuesday 18, The New York Times announced that they would be expanding their online Opinion Pages. In an effort to embrace the ‘blogs are news’ and ‘news are blogs’ mentality, the NYT plans to increase content, videos, discussion features, and contributors in the new online section. The online expansion comes soon after the newspaper revamped its new Sunday section, Sunday Review. ‘All the News That’s Fit to Print’ (and now post).

For more recent media updates, follow our newest section and ongoing blog series, ‘Media bytes’.

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October 12th, 2011

We've seen the future and it's Google+

We've seen the future and it's Google+

Google+ recently opened its invite-only doors to the entire online community. Despite the recent jabber on slowing participation numbers since the social service left beta, it’s still in its earliest days and we think there is great communications value to be uncovered.

As a PR, content creation, and comms agency we practice what we preach. In the past few weeks we’ve started utilizing Google+ to share ideas, brainstorm and update each other. One of the most effective features for us so far has been the Hangouts—with team members constantly moving and traveling around the world, being about to see and speak to multiple colleagues at the same time during team updates and internal collaboration has been great.

There’s always buzz and hype when a new technology or platform is announced, especially from a big player such as Google. But as we all know, it’s the unique features that come with a product that determines whether or not it has staying power and widespread reach. From what we’ve seen, Google+ is definitely on the right track. The Hangout feature allows for engaging ‘face to face’ meetings, instant uploads, IM chats, and voice-recognized screen switch so the largest video screen highlights the person who is talking at that moment. For us, it has provided a new way of sharing content with each other and in the future, our clients as well.

We think the implications will be far-reaching, from customer service to targeted marketing campaigns, product announcements, news launches – and of course, internal collaboration.

As a team that thrives on communications (after all, it’s a part of our name and premise) it has been great to learn about a new and unique platform hands-on. So watch this space as we uncover more features of Google +; we’ll be sure to share our best hints and tips as we get to know its uses, efficiencies and tricks.

If you’re also getting up to speed with Google Plus, then add us at http://gplus.to/PromptBoston.

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October 10th, 2011

Mangos in a pub…

Mangos in a pub…

CNET Crave picks the latest Mango news...

Regardless of whether I’m ‘talking tech‘ in the City of London with IT executives or discussing the recent harvest with farmers in my local, the sticky bar-top remains cluttered with the same bunch of smartphone handsets: iPhones old and new, a couple of generations of Blackberry, some HTC Androids perhaps, maybe a Samsung or two…

So just who the heck is using Windows Phones, eh? Is it you and your friends in a suburban social scene I trundle through on an InterCity, unaware of your superior GUI and slick app environment? If you are a fan of Microsoft’s platform please let us know, but I suspect the population of Windows Phone users is actually pretty rarefied – somewhere out there with all the Zune subscribers…

Back in May I remember reading on Crave about the imminent Windows Phone 7.5 – codenamed Mango – which Microsoft had unleashed in hot pursuit of the Apple and Android handsets already disappearing over the horizon. To be honest, it felt a bit ‘Zuney‘ at the time, but I still assumed a brave but loyal following would support the platform and encourage further development.

But today the same news channel is reporting that Dell has pulled the plug on a planned Windows Phone Mango handset. Sure, Dell seems to be cutting back on support for Android too, but it’s still a pretty gloomy outlook for the Microsoft smartphone. The Dell Wrigley has allegedly been cancelled, and Dell won’t be producing any Mango handsets to take its place.

On the bright side, CNET has also found out that Nokia will announce its first Windows Phone devices at Nokia World at the end of the month. But who is waiting for these phones with even a scrap of the fervour a disappointing iPhone launch can muster at the drop of some leaked hardware?

What do you think about the likely future of the Windows Phone platform? And what do you feel the future focus of Dell’s product portfolio will be if smartphones are being pushed to one side for the time being? Please let us know.


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October 6th, 2011

Steve Jobs 1955 – 2011

Steve Jobs 1955 – 2011



“Steve’s brilliance, passion and energy were the source of countless innovations that enrich and improve all our lives. The world is immeasurably better because of Steve.”

“Apple has lost a visionary and creative genius, and the world has lost an amazing human being. Those of us who have been fortunate enough to know and work with Steve have lost a dear friend and an inspiring mentor. Steve leaves behind a company that only he could have built, and his spirit will forever be the foundation of Apple.”

“If you would like to share your thoughts, memories, and condolences, please email rememberingsteve@apple.com


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October 3rd, 2011

Éirinn go Brách!

Éirinn go Brách!

Great news – it seems that The Irish Post – a newspaper particularly popular with Irish expatriates both sides of the Atlantic – will be saved after all, arriving back on the news-stands in as soon as ten days.

Although it was closed and liquidated by Thomas Crosbie Holdings on 19 August – which we reported here at the time – Irish businessman and Loot owner Elgin Loane has now bought the paper following a high profile campaign to save the title.

Loane told the Press Gazette: “The Irish Post has a long and proud tradition of serving the expatriate community in Britain for over forty years and must be continued for the benefit of both the incumbents as well as the growing population of Irish people heading to Britain.”

Labour MP Stephen Pound, who supported the campaign to save the Irish Post, said: “This is brilliant news. The Irish Post offers a window onto the Irish community that needs to be kept on. There has been a gap in the week without the paper, so it is good to know that the paper is back.”

A team is now being rehired to fill most of the jobs lost as a result of the earlier closure of the 41 year old Post.


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