[EVENTS] NET/WORK Baltimore job fair: Thursday, February 20, 2014

Photo from Philadelphia

Reserve your free tickets now for NET/WORK Baltimore on Thursday, February 20th. If their last event ( Philadelphia, shown here) is any indication, it looks like it’ll be a great event for job-seekers!

Local tech news hub Baltimore is hosting a jobs fair on Thursday, February 20th at the Emerging Technology Center on 101 N. Haven St. in Highlandtown. With over 16 technology-related firms attending (and planning on hiring people now), this event is a must-attend for anyone looking for a job in web design and development, information systems, cybersecurity, game design and development, technology consulting, programming, mobile app development, marketing/advertising, or e-commerce. A number of Baltimore-based non-profit technology community groups will be in attendance, too including Accelerate Baltimore, Betamore, Digital Harbor Foundation, and Girl Develop It Baltimore.

Tickets are usually $5, but students with a valid ID get in for free. Check out the event site to learn more and reserve your ticket before the event sells out.

Some of the firms planning on recruiting at NET/WORK Baltimore include:



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[MOBILE] Baltimore in top 10 of US cities with most smartphone users

Graph of results from Nielsen survey

Baltimore ties for 5th in the US for highest percentage of smartphone users.

If you needed another reason to feel smart for living in and around Baltimore (and for going to UB!), here’s one: Baltimore ranks #5 among US markets for smartphone users. According to a recent survey by Nielsen (famous for tracking TV and radio usage),  72% of Baltimore-region mobile phone users have smartphones, slightly above Chicago,IL’s 71% and Miami, FL’s 73%. The top smartphone-using city in the US was Dallas, TX, with 76% of mobile users sportin’ smartphones. On average, 67% of US mobile subscribers use smartphones.

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[EDUCATION] 7 Great ways to learn how to code

Chart showing the difference between a dreamer, a coder, and a hacker

Image courtesy of Paul Downey via Flickr

One of the most common pitches endured by freelance programmers comes from the enthusiastic, wanna-be entrepreneur who thinks that he or she has come up with the greatest idea for a web site (or app or technology) that the world’s ever seen. There’s just one problem: they don’t have the skills to create even a working prototype. So what do they do? They reach out to any coders who will listen to them for more than 5 seconds or who made the mistake of responding to their emails. And the pitch is always the same:


Budding Entrepreneur: “Hey! Listen! I’ve got this idea that’s gonna be the next Facebook/Twitter/Instagram/Google! All I need is for someone to do the code! I don’t have any funding right now so I can’t pay you (though confidentially I’ve been working on a few angel investors and might have some funding coming through soon), but I’m willing to offer you an equity stake in my new company if you’ll do the coding for me! It’s the chance of a lifetime!”
Freelance Coder: “Uh…no.”

The problem is that everyone’s got ideas… but few people have the skills (or are willing to learn the skills) necessary to turn their ideas into something tangible enough to convince other people just how great their idea is. Those who have these skills — coders, designers, engineers, architects, Makers, etc.– acquired them with a lot of blood, sweat, tears, and hard work. Remember, if it was easy, everyone would be doing it. The real key to success  having the creativity to innovate combined with the skills to create what you dream.

That being said, most people can learn how to code. Granted, you might not be cranking out new operating systems or single-handedly writing console games after a few months of practice, but you’d be surprised at what you can do once you know the basics and apply a little creativity. Better yet, these days there are a number of fabulous and free (or very low cost) ways to learn how to code online.

Interested? Check out 7 best ways to learn how to code on VentureBeat.

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[MOBILE] Google’s “OpenProject” lets mobile users project and share videos using external screens

If you’ve ever wished you could collaborate with someone while using your mobile phone but were thwarted by the small screen, Google’s OpenProject (that’s “PRO-ject,” not “proj-ect”) project may at least give us a glimpse at an answer. People using the system scan a QR code on the big screen where they want to project their images, the phone’s camera recognizes the code and then sends a “placeholder” image to the big screen. The user can then move the placeholder to where they want it to go on the screen (using just their phone) and then select an image or an app to display. Yawning? It’s better to see it in action. Check out the video below.

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[MOBILE] Surprise! iPhone 5S not immune to .50 cal sniper bullet

file this one under “duh!”


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[NEWS] Louis CK Explains Why He Hates Smartphones

Kinda makes you think about this whole technology thing, huh?


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[NEWS] FDA decides to go “hands off” on regulating medical apps


Photo courtesy Adam Fagan

FDA won’t regulate most medical apps
Photo courtesy Adam Fagan

VentureBeat reports that the Food and Drug Administration has decided that most medical apps for smartphones “pose a negligible threat to consumers.” The FDA has already approved 75 mobile medical apps this year and will turn its attention to the kinds of apps that turn your iPhone or Android into a medical device, most of which require additional hardware and/or sensors. These apps were determined by the agency to be the ones “most likely to put patient safety at risk.” Basically, if an app acts as a replacement for an existing medical device it’ll be subject to FDA scrutiny. As for the other 17,000+ apps out there that don’t require electrodes strapped to your body it’s going to be a wide-open marketplace.

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