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Archive for the ‘Technology’ Category

Verizon’s #YouDontKnowMe Initiative Puts A Spotlight on Racial Stereotypes

July 25th, 2016 by Christen

Stereotypes are real. And although in recent days, they’ve seem to be too real, causing terrifying reprocussions – Verizon is doing something about changing the narrative with it’s newest #YouDontKnowMe initiative.

 

Baltimore middle schooler Loden Harris became an inventor at age 13 when he turned his vision for a mobile phone charging stand into a real working product with a 3D printer. By bringing his idea to life, he shared a message to his African-American peers: “There are young black males who are preparing to make a difference in the technical world!”

 

Verizon #YouDontKnowMe

photo courtesy of Afro.com

 

Loden’s phone charging stand is just one of the more than 500 technology products including apps and 3D inventions, that African-American boys have brought to life in the last year – with the help of a new program that’s focusing on minority middle school boys. This group is often “forgotten” when it comes to programming for technology skills, despite the fact that African-American males remain one of the most underrepresented groups in STEM professions, and the “boys club” of Silicon Valley is stiflingly monochromatic.

 

 

The Verizon Innovative Learning program for minority males is a new initiative that is making sure these boys have a chance to succeed, by investing in them with marketable tech skills, mentors and access to classes on college campuses. Even more than skills, it’s helping these boys get a new picture of how they too can MAKE IT, even if they aren’t a rapper or professional ball player.

 

To date, the program’s reached 450 boys so far and is now expanding to 12 cities, where it will engage more1,200 young men. New data also shows the program is making an impact – increasing minority boys’ interest in STEM careers and subjects.  Verizon is also hosting 100 young men from July 27th – 30th in San Francisco at an event where they will receive hands-on tech training, hear insightful lectures and experience behind-the-scenes workshop at Lucas Films and the Levi’s Stadium Gridiron Engineering & Design Lab.

 

Want to do your part in sharing the new narrative about our community in STEM?  Check out the video and share it socially on Facebook and Twitter using #YouDontKnowMe today!

Connect with Verizon Innovative Learning: www.verizon.com/inspires
Learn more about Verizon Innovative Learning app challenge: http://appchallenge.tsaweb.org/
Find Verizon Innovative Learning on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/VerizonFoundation
Find Verizon Innovative Learning on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/verizongiving

 

How are you changing the narrative and stereotypes in your community?  Sound off and share on social media using #YouDontKnowMe today!

Essence Beauty & Style Expo Uncovers the Secrets Of Black Beauty With Olay

July 7th, 2016 by Christen

Disclosure:  I am a spokesperson for OLAY participating in the ESSENCE Festival Style & Beauty chat, while the talent appearance has been compensated all views expressed below are my own.

 

During Essence Festival in New Orleans, My Black is Beautiful celebrated 10 years of inspiring women of all ages to cultivate and celebrate our Black Girl Magic from the inside out.  Utilizing beauty consultations, intimate conversations breaking beauty myths, I teamed up with Essence beauty editor Nykia Spradley and Dr. Thompson from OLAY to share tips, tricks and the science behind achieving naturally glowing skin for the summer.

 

olay

 

For more than 60 years OLAY has delivered phenomenal products to celebrate and enhance generational beauty passed down from our grandmothers, mothers and now for us.  Cultivating quality ingredients and formulas that enhance our skin and empower the idea that ‘Black Don’t Crack”.  In addition to vitamins like B3, retinol and SPF, there’s a complex blueprint behind the science of creating beautiful skin and OLAY has cracked the code.

 

olay

 

Everyone wants beautiful, healthy, radiant skin and it all starts from the inside out. Clean eating with emphasis on fresh fruits, vegetables and plenty of water is the key to unlocking younger looking skin. If you’re not a huge fan of drinking water, grab a water bottle infuser and add fresh strawberries, cucumbers or lemons for a refreshing splash of taste.

 

olay

 

If you’re ready to upgrade your skin from the inside out, try pairing OLAY Regenerist Luminous Collection because its properties and ingredients really do enhance my skin by fading dark spots and giving me a beautiful, healthy looking glow. The Luminous Collection uses a Skin Brightening Complex which penetrates 10 layers deep into the skin’s surface to fade the appearance of dark spots. That’s some deep tissue moisturizing right there!

 

olay

 

Olay’s #1 selling face cream – Regenerist Micro-Sculpting Cream – is enhanced with vitamins and skin firming properties to keep you looking ageless with the added bonus of SPF 30.  Since Olay is committed to helping women make smart beauty decisions, it includes SPF in its facial moisturizers and body lotions for convenience.

 

olay

 

I know we’re busy women with careers and children, but you must also wash your face daily (especially before bed), and moisturize. Don’t go to sleep with make up on! If you’re really on the run, Olay has made it easy to remove make up and wash your face with convenient micro-exfoliating wet cleansing cloths.

 

olay

 

We all know the mantra  “Black Don’t Crack” but now we can make sure we have flawless and ageless looking skin with a few changes in our diet and adding OLAY to your daily beauty routine for an easy skin fix.  How do you keep your skin glowing all summer long?  Share your thoughts below!

Google and Cartoon Network’s “Power Puff Girls” Empowers Black Girls Code

June 20th, 2016 by Tech Staff

 

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Cartoon Network and co-host Google welcomed Made with Code, Mayor of East Point Jannquell Peters and Black Girls Code at Turner in Atlanta for a special event launching GIF: The Powerpuff Girls. The event and coding activity are part of the collaboration between the companies with a mission of combining their entertainment and tech expertise to bring the power of creative coding to kids in every community, at every income level and in every demographic group.

 

 

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Must Read: This New Website Will Turn You Into A Beloved “Powerpuff Girl”

 

The event’s special guests, forty five teenage girls from Black Girls Code, were greeted by female executives from Cartoon Network and Google, including Christina Miller, president and general manager for Cartoon Network, Adult Swim and Boomerang; Katie Krentz, Senior Director, Comedy Animation Development, Cartoon Network; Lilyn Hester, Public Affairs Manager for Google; Google Engineer Monica Renneke; and Mayor Peters. Each woman reaffirmed the importance of coding as an essential language to fulfill your goals and dreams, and encouraged the girls to continue to explore their creativity through coding.

 

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“This day is exactly why we at Cartoon Network committed ourselves to encouraging kids to explore coding and the intersection of creativity and technology,” said Christina Miller, President and General Manager of Cartoon Network, Adult Swim, and Boomerang, during the event. “We know how important this is, and that is why we want to be part of the community who helps all kids learn the language of coding to build their futures – and frankly – all of our futures.”

Get Dad The Tech Gear He Really Wants This Year With These Last Minute Father’s Day Gift Ideas

June 17th, 2016 by Tech Staff

Father’s Day is just a few days away and totally crept up on us faster than we thought!  If you’ve been procrastinating in finding the perfect gift for dad, we’ve round up a few of our tech gear favs that any dad would love below!

 

LG Father's Day

 

For the outdoor enthusiast that wants to capture “it all” … literally … the LG 360 CAM is a game-changer. The pocketable virtual reality camera is ready to capture all of your outdoor experiences in amazing 360-degree dual wide-angle 13 million pixel detail.

 

Zepp Father's Day

 

For the dad who loves to play baseball, the Zepp Baseball will view your swing in 3D from any angle. It will track how fast your bat is traveling at impact with the ball and measure the angle and location of your bat at impact.

 

father's day

 

If your dad is looking to get fit and training for a marathon this summer, the Moto 360 Sport is a must. It will track your distance and pace with GPS right on your wrist. Moto 360 will continuously monitor your steps, calories and heart rate while delivering updates to your smartphone.

 

Zepp Father's Day 

For the avid golfer, there is always room for improvement. The Zepp Golf Swing Analyzer will view your swing in 3D from any angle while measuring the angle of your club at the top of your back swing. Place your smartphone in your pocket and it will also measure your hip rotation.

 

 Show your dad how you really feel and get him the tech gear he’ll use and love this year from Verizon Wireless!  Score these gifts today just in time for Father’s Day – Sunday, June 19th.  

Apple Rumors, Trends And Top 6 Updates That’ll Change Your Life Forever!

June 14th, 2016 by Tech Staff

Today Apple rolled out the red carpet introducing the latest advancements, updates and bells and whistles.  Major updates are on the way for operation systems including the Apple Watch, iPhone and more!  Discover the top Apple updates that will upgrade the way you use your Apple device, accessories and change your life forever!

 

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Apple iMessage

Bring on the Emojis, invisible ink messages and more!  Soon, your iPhone will have emoji predictions as you type and when you tap the emoji button, words that can be emoji-fied will be highlighted. All you have to do is tap to emoji-fy your message. Bubble effects lets you send messages in a whole new way — slam text, loud text, gentle text, Invisible ink  — which allows you to reveal a concealed message or photo with a swipe of your finger —  and more. You can also draw images via digital touch, send reactions to texts, write messages in your own handwriting and send full-screen effects.

 

watchOS 3 is on the way!

watchOS 3 is seven times faster. Rather than simply waiting for your apps to load, thanks to watchOS 3’s Quick Start feature and Instant Launch, everything on your watch is going to load faster than ever. You can expect this lightning-fast update to launch in the fall.

 

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Apple Music is getting redesigned. AGAIN.

With Apple Music’s redesign, you’ll have access to lyrics, a daily playlist curated just For You and other new features like Browse, which will allow you to discover new music.

 

 

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Photos in iOS 10 = PURE AWESOMENESS. 

Photos in iOS 10 will be able to do Face + Object + Scene Recognition and sort your photos accordingly. There’s also a new Memories feature that will aggregate events and trips for you, and will even automatically string together your clips to make videos for you. Oh, and those super cool Live Photos Apple introduced back in September are now editable.

 

 

Apple Pay is coming to the web. Soon Apple Pay is going to be as ubiquitous as PayPal or Visa. When you’re shopping online, you’ll be able to select and pay with Apple Pay. Just have your iPhone or Apple Watch handy, then use your thumb to checkout.

 

 

siri

 

Siri is coming to the Mac

Siri is coming to the Mac. You read that right. Siri is coming to your computer and will soon be able to pull up files with just the sound of your voice.

 

In other news, in order to make the OS more cohesive with its other operating systems, Apple has decided to change the Mac operating system name to macOS. Apple, which has a long tradition of naming its Mac operating systems after California landmarks, is calling the newest edition Sierra.

The public beta of Sierra will be available in July, but will officially launch in the fall.

What updates are you looking forward to in the new macOS systems this fall?  Share your thoughts below!

 

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SPONSORED:  Get Inspired With Invaluable Advice For Graduates Of Any Age With AT&T #GradAdvice

June 7th, 2016 by Christen


Disclaimer:  The following content has been sponsored by AT&T in partnership with the AT&T Aspire and #GradAdvice campaign.  All opinions and experiences shared are my own.

 

The month of June is one of the most joyous times of the year. Winter weather is long forgotten, warm sunny days reign supreme and new beginnings surround us all. Graduation season is in full swing and students everywhere are getting motivated to mature, succeed and impact the world.

 

Advice for graduates

Celebrating the latest graduate in our family at MSU’s commencement ceremony.

 

It feels like just yesterday I was straightening my graduation cap and ready to walk across the commencement stage at Michigan State University. I was so hopeful & excited to start my journey into adulthood and couldn’t wait to discover what was to come. My graduation day flew by in a blur, but I do remember taking plenty of pictures and reliving my graduation ceremony through videos the next day.  Another thing I remember the day after my graduation, that I was gifted with the most valuable advice that I’d ever received in my life.

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From one MSU graduate to another, my sister Sophia and I.

A great piece of advice often comes in the form of commencement speeches, graduation greeting cards and even intimate conversations between friends.  Thoughts of support or encouragement often follow the themes of “Work Hard”, “Dream Big” or “Follow Your Passion” – but there are additional lessons that stood out during my graduation season that could benefit this year’s graduating class.

 

Advice for graduates

The latest Michigan State University graduate, my sister Sophia.

 

 

Just moments after waking up a college graduate, I got a phone call that would change my life forever. There are life changing moments that can impact a person forever.  This was my moment.  My grandmother, called to encourage my post collegiate walk and her words have been a guiding light impacting daily decisions ever since.

 

“Never compromise your morals & values to make others comfortable.”

 

Owning your individuality & walking in your purpose can sometimes be easier said than done. But if you stay true to yourself & confident in the face of adversity there’s nothing that you can’t achieve. So to the graduating class of 2016 — I’d like to extend heartfelt congratulations and if I could leave you with one piece of advice, I’d echo the wise words of my grandmother (with a twist) …

 

“Never compromise yourself online (or offline) for acceptance. Be who you were before the internet & live your best life!”

 

Advice for graduates

Celebrating the newest college graduate on the campus of Michigan State University.

 

 

Living in a post graduate world is all about perceptions, reactions and choices.  Many celebs have shared sentiments of advice that shape how graduates view success and failures for years to come a few of my favorites come from Oprah, Winston Churchill and Salman Khan.

 

“The biggest difficulties in life come from not being present, from ignoring what life and others are trying to tell you.” – OPRAH WINFREY

 

“Your greatest fears are created by your imagination. Don’t give in to them.” – WINSTON CHURCHILL

  

“Live your life like it’s your second chance.” – SALMAN KHAN

 

 

This season I’m celebrating graduation season with AT&T and its Aspire initiative – an initiative that powers technology, relationships, and social innovation to help students make their biggest ideas their reality. Together, these networks are helping students and communities across America.

 

What does graduation season mean to you? Reflect on what your favorite graduation memories, share your best pieces of advice to graduates and join the AT&T #GradAdvice conversation today.

Go Where You’ve Never Gone Before with Samsung Gear VR From Best Buy!

June 6th, 2016 by Christen

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Disclaimer: The reviewer has been compensated in the form of a Best Buy Gift Card and/or received the product/service at a reduced price or for free.

 

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Mobile virtually reality is changing the way we view entertainment as we know it! From taking part in epic battles to interacting with live dinosaurs, you’ll go where you’ve never been able to venture before with the Samsung Gear VR.

With the Oculus Video app, you can customize trailers, clips and even your own movie files to create entertainment unlike anything you’ve seen before!  Once you put on the Samsung Gear VR, you can instantly customize your virtual world – and just in case you want to see your favorites in a whole new light,  you can buy hundreds of full-length Hollywood movies and TV shows.

 

Facebook Brings 360 Videos For Super Content Creators

 

Samsung Mobile Gear VR

 

Live stream your favorite games, short films and video clips in a virtual theater setting. With full access to more than 1 million Vimeo videos and Twitch, a leading video platform and community for gamers, there’s always something new to experience.

 

Now Playing: Hands On With Samsung Note 4 and Gear VR 

 

Samsung Mobile June

 

Just in time for summer entertainment, Best Buy has launched the ultimate Gear VR deal! Now through June 18th, you could score a free Samsung Gear VR, plus $50 of Virtual Reality content with purchase, or lease, and activation of select Samsung Smartphones from Best Buy or BestBuy.com.

Samsung Gear VR

 

Celebs Share Music And Fun At The ESSENCE Fest Samsung Galaxy Experience

 

The Samsung Gear VR makes the perfect gift for dads and grads this season! Score the gift of entertainment and be at the center of exciting games, watch the best of Hollywood in your own private cinema and so much more with an exclusive deal from Best Buy!

Offer valid 6/5 – 6/18

If You Really Love Binge Watching With Bae, Put A Ring On It!

May 31st, 2016 by Christen

cornetto commitment rings

 

First there were purity rings, then promise rings and now there’s a new form of outrageous commitment rings coming to a finger near you soon.  Modeled after engagement rings, there are new “streaming commitment rings” that have been created to symbolize your promise to binge watch together, forever.  That’s right, with these rings, you’re promising to Netflix and chill with and only with your streaming partner by your side.

 

streaming rings

 

So what really makes these rings work?  Of course they don’t simply rely on your willpower alone.  They actually sync with the streaming service itself, making it so that the couples show of choice can only be watched when both rings are in the same vicinity.  Working with most streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, Amazon and more – with the streaming commitment rings, there’s no way around catching up on your favorite shows without your partner around.

 

 

Personally, I think if bae gives you a streaming commitment ring before you score that engagement ring, you have more important things to worry about!  But I guess any ring is better than no ring, right?  Find out when you can purchase your set of streaming commitment rings on the company’s website here.

 

Who’s on your stream team?  Have you ever been violated by a Netflix cheater? Share and tag your favorite binge-watching buddies on Twitter and Facebook!

Tech Talk: SnapChat Shopping, Lyft Ups The Ante and More!

May 24th, 2016 by Christen

What’s new, now and next in technology!  We’ve scoured the web to featuring what’s trending in technology and back by popular demand we’re bringing Tech Talk Tuesdays BACK on Facebook Live!  Discover what’s trending this week below!

 

PROJECT ARA

 

New Ara Android smartphone:  What if you could build the perfect smartphone to suit all your needs?  Google’s new phone wants to create a custom smartphone to suit your unique needs. Google recently announced at their developers conference a smartphone that consumers can build simply by snapping them in place like lego pieces. The Project Ara smartphone has buildable 3-4 speakers, adjustable camera + lenses, additional memory storage, battery storage and even options for glucose reader, car key fobs and more. Developers will be the first to get their hands on it this Fall and it’ll be available for consumers by early next year. Because there’s no perfect smartphone for everyone, but now there’s an option to build the perfect smartphone as unique as you!

 

 

LYFT 24 HOUR

 

 

Lyft vs Uber Car-sharing wars:  Lyft ups the ante on the car sharing rules of engagement testing out a new feature that’ll let you schedule a ride 24hrs in advance. Lyft is currently testing out a feature that’ll allow users to schedule rides 24-hours in advance. It’s already rolled out testing in San Franscisco with possible plans to expand soon. Booking a car ahead of time has previously been the exclusive realm of for-hire vehicle services like black cars and limo companies but soon an upgraded car-sharing expereince will be available to all.

Customers who want to book a Lyft ride up to a day in advance would need to tap the clock icon to set the desired time for pickup. And riders can update or cancel their scheduled ride up to 30 minutes before the requested time.

 

 

SNAPCHAT SHOPPING

 

Social Shopping With SnapChat:  Thinking about heading to the movies this holiday weekend?  If you’re like most millennials on SnapChat 24/7 – the social sharing platform has made it easy to buy tickets this weekend.  The Social media platform SnapChat is making it easier to spend your hard earned coins online.  Now you can buy beauty products and movie tickets using the Discover tab in the app which directs you to Lancome, Target and Fandango online. The new X-Men Apocolypse film opening this weekend is the newest eCommerce giant to jump on board.  Using an algorithm-powered advertising feed, brands are going directly to the consumer using smartphone apps and social media apps consumers are using everyday.

 

 

Customize your Facebook Feed by getting rid of topics you hate with this Facebook hack.  There’s a unique Facebook feature that’ll magically clean your feed of topics you no longer want to see.  Want to Dump Trump or get rid of controversial news? There’s a hack for that. The Facebook Filter Feed works by stripping out info that you don’t want to see, as decided by keywords that YOU pick. Whether it’s one keyword, a few unrelated ones or tons of ‘em, it allows you to control the kinds of posts and statuses you actually care about seeing without having to unfriend or unfollow anyone.

To put the smart tech to work, all you need to do is download the extension, click on the blue funnel icon in your address bar and add as many keywords as you like. Whether it’s politics, rabid sports fans, a TV show you’re totally over or a combination of the three (and more), you’ll be on your way to more interesting updates from the people you love. And because you can change your keywords anytime, you can always choose to bring back the banned posts whenever you like — or ban new ones that crop up with future viral news.

 

 

hgtv smart home

 

Unlock your home with Siri:  How would you like to control your home security with your voice? Bluetooth security locks aren’t new, however the August lock using iPhone’s HomeKit feature enables users to control deadbolt locks, lighting, heating/cooling and more with your voice.  August smart lock and smart home connect has offered smart home technologies for years, however, the newest August smart lock pairs with your Apple ID and smartphone – taking home security to the next level. With Apple HomeKit you can give commands like “Unlock my door” / “Lock My Door” or even ask Siri “Is my door locked?” It’s available now in stores like Amazon/Best Buy or August.com for $229
Smart Home Giveaway:  HGTV has an amazing opportunity for tech-savvy homebodies everywhere! HGTV is giving away a custom tech-infused and fully furnished smart home, 2016 Mercedes Benz and $100k.  The Raleigh, NC Smart Home 2016 giveaway includes a fully furnished 3 floor, 4 bedroom/5-bathroom home with Exercise room, media room and more. Plus they’re giving away at 2016 Mercedes Benz GLC and $100k. Valued $1.2 Million. Enter now until June 2nd – find more details at DivasandDorks.com.

Enter To Win A Fully Furnished Smart Home + Mercedes Benz And $100,000 From HGTV #HGTVSmart

May 19th, 2016 by Christen

How would you like to win a fully designed, super connected smart home?  What if you could win an awesome 2016 Mercedes Benz and $100,000 in cash too?  From bluetooth enabled locks, wireless home security and of course a state of the art home entertainment system – this smart home has it all.

 

 HGTV Smart Home 2016

 

This HGTV Smart Home 2016 with a two-car garage was designed for a family to enjoy, with Southern traditional craftsman style, cottage details and a subtle color palette that creates a memorable welcome.

 

 HGTV Smart Home 2016

 

HGTV and DIY is offering one lucky winner the smart home of their dreams in the Smart Home 2016 giveaway.  Awarded to one lucky winner later this summer, the grand prize includes the home, its furnishings, a 2016 Mercedes-Benz GLC and $100,000 from national mortgage lender Quicken Loans.

 

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NOW through 5 p.m. ET Thursday, June 2, 2016, viewers can put technology to work for their chance to move into the HGTV Smart Home 2016. Eligible viewers can enter twice per day — once at HGTV.com and once at DIYNetwork.com — for their chance to win the grand prize package valued at more than $1.2 million.

 

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What would you do if you won this amazing  HGTV Smart Home 2016 prize?  Tweet us at @DivasandDorks #HGTVSmart

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