Microsoft Improves Excel, Twitter Tests 280 Characters…And Other Small Business Tech News This Week

Microsoft Improves Excel, Twitter Tests 280 Characters…And Other Small Business Tech News This Week

By early 2018, Excel will be able to understand more about its users’ inputs and pull additional information from the Internet as necessary. (Source: Tech Crunch) (My company, the Marks Group, is a Microsoft partner). There’s a new cyber threat that small businesses can’t afford to overlook: “crime-as-a-service,” or CaaS—when professional criminal develop advanced tools, “kits,” and other packaged services and then sell or rent them to other less-experienced criminals. Now, cybercriminals are increasingly targeting small businesses over large ones, because a small business can’t afford to spend as much on cybersecurity. There’s a new cyber threat that small businesses can’t afford to overlook: “crime-as-a-service,” or CaaS—when professional criminal develop advanced tools, “kits,” and other packaged services and then sell or rent them to other less-experienced criminals. There’s a new cyber threat that small businesses can’t afford to overlook: “crime-as-a-service,” or CaaS—when professional criminal develop advanced tools, “kits,” and other packaged services and then sell or rent them to other less-experienced criminals. Accelo, a six-year old startup, has designed a set of tools for project-driven small businesses with less than 100 employees who don’t usually have access to software offering a complete view of their business operations. Accelo, a six-year old startup, has designed a set of tools for project-driven small businesses with less than 100 employees who don’t usually have access to software offering a complete view of their business operations.

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Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg

Here are five things in technology that happened this past week and how they affect your business. Did you miss them?

1 — Microsoft Excel is about to get a lot smarter.

By early 2018, Excel will be able to understand more about its users’ inputs and pull additional information from the Internet as necessary. Microsoft will introduce new data types so Excel users can tag a list of company names and then access more information about those companies from Microsoft’s Bing API, such as stock data and market cap. The program will also offer a new tool to automatically pull the most interesting data from a spreadsheet and visualize it. (Source: Tech Crunch) (My company, the Marks Group, is a Microsoft partner).

Why this is important for your business:

If you’re like most of my clients, you’re an Excel user – and I bet you’re still just using the basics. Get familiar with these new features and consider some training- it may have a huge impact on your productivity.

2 — Twitter workarounds give anyone 280 characters to play with.

Twitter is currently conducting a trial of a platform that will double its character count—from its default of 140 up to 280. Only a select few will have access to the new feature, but those who don’t may be able to gain access if they’re willing to tweak their browser. Some enterprising users have found several workarounds that will double the tweet character count in creative ways. (Source: engadget)

Why this is important for your business:

There are already “hacks” available to enable just about anyone to take advantage of this 280-character test run. If it becomes official then you may be able to get more information out to your followers.

3 — Crime as a service could be the next big threat to your business.

There’s a new cyber threat that small businesses can’t afford to overlook: “crime-as-a-service,” or CaaS—when professional criminal develop advanced tools, “kits,” and other packaged services and then sell or rent them to other less-experienced criminals. Using these kits, the inexperienced actors can launch sophisticated cyberattacks and scams. Now, cybercriminals are increasingly targeting small businesses over large ones, because a small business can’t afford to spend as much on cybersecurity. (Source: UKStartup)

Why this is important for your business:

Sadly, it is becoming increasingly easier for malware creators to infect your business. Upgrade your security software, get your employees trained and invest in online backup services.

4 — Cypress enables longer battery life for Internet of Things devices.

To make information-sharing easier, this week Cypress Semiconductor announced a new chip that provides portable IoT devices with low-power Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity. The company’s 28-nanometer chip cuts power consumption by up to 70% in “receive mode” and up to 80% in “sleep mode” when compared to current solutions. (Source: Venture Beat)

Why this is important for your business:

The technology will make many IoT applications more practical since it…

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