WordPress roundup, week six

Focus Shift

A couple of weeks ago I made a shift in who I followed. Dropping a handful of news sources that day after day seemed to be reporting on the same political happenings.

Two weeks ago, I was given a list of tech and marketing based accounts to follow for another class. Since then, my twitter has seemed more diverse and I find myself actually reading a higher percentage of the tweets that roll across my feed. This roundup should reflect that.

Tweets of the past week

Starting soft

Puppies saved from an avalanche on January 23, 2017.

This article caught my eye because the title sounds like it was written on BuzzFeed, even though it simply states what happened. The article was pretty short and just listed the facts of the situation as more of an update. Enough said. Still, if there were an Agent Cody Banks Sequal in the midst, this should be considered for a part of the plot.

New York tuition change

The state of New York entered deliberations to make the state universities of New York (SUNY) and city universities of New York (CUNY), free for in-state residents.

At the time of the tweet, New York officials were attempting to make universities in New York free for all students. However, the agreement that was eventually released was that in-state students would pay less for tuition if their family income fell below $125,000 (as low as $6,000 per semester).

Cancer Detection

Scientists have developed a breathalyzer that can analyze the acids and basis in your stomach and tell the user if they have cancer or not (at least for some internal cancers like stomach or intestinal cancer).

Obviously, cancer is a high priority for doctors. The major factor that kills people when they have cancer is that they don’t detect it early enough. So a breathalyzer that can detect the onset of cancer, especially stomach and prostate cancers which can be hard to detect.

Threshold Tightening

Machine intelligence is replacing thousands of low-wage factory workers. Software with mechanical abilities are able to do the jobs of hundreds of people, especially if the job is simple.

I used to work in a factory, and the longer you work there, the more you notice how technically advanced the facilities really are, and how much more seamless they can make the process with machines rather than people.  Most of the complex tasks are taken by machines and run by a much smarter software engineer behind a desk. Machines are learning like people do and as they get smarter, as they do, the bar for low-income workers will be raised.

Division of Wages

The movement to increase minimum wage has left behind tipped-wage employees. This is because lawmakers have been hearing calls for a raised minimum wage but have not been raising the much lower rates that restaurant workers face. In some states, the hourly pay for servers is still $2.13.

The law for tipped workers is that the sum of their tips and hourly wage have to amount to the state’s minimum wage per hour. Given this, it may seem that there is nothing to complain about, however, the bill doesn’t always get settled in time. Often the tips are counted and distributed at a later date so servers can often be stuck with a weeks pay at a rate much lower than minimum wage, which is unacceptable for families living from paycheck to paycheck.

Renewable Rising

Costs of renewable energy have fallen 50 percent in the past five years. In addition, the cost of the average electric bill has fallen two percent. More impressively, coal powered energy plants are only 30% of the electric source today as opposed to half in 2008.

It is encouraging to see renewable energies become more and more available to general households. The great thing about renewable energy such as solar and wind power is that it is a technology. The general trend for technology; better, smaller and cheaper.

My first online story

Technology is a rising cornerstone in the classroom for all forms of education. Withing the technology sector, VR is one of the most promising developments available to educators.

Virtual reality is entering more and more households as it becomes more affordable and more capable. Currently, major focuses of VR software developers is creating a more realistic experience in games and movies for VR. However, there is software being developed for education, and educators are excited to see its potential.

Second Online Story

The cost of providing an education is rising, yet, Colorado’s education budget is falling short. Providing the third least per in-state student (in dollars), Gov. John Hickenlooper and the colorado board of education are set on allowing more budget for the funding of Higher education.

At the time of writing this article, I had just gotten my last interview for this project and was in the process of splicing it together. Look for it come Wednesday, February, 2nd 2017.

Update 3/13/2017: The article has since been published.

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