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links for 2010-07-08

  • Twitter is set to hire its first employee in Washington, DC, a Government Liaison. That’s great news.

    Here’s even better news for Twitter: you don’t have to sell your product to representatives. They know it’s useful. They look at John McCain and Chuck Grassley. They look at Barack Obama. What elected representative doesn’t want 40 thousand, or a million, or four million people instantly notified of their legislative victories, or what they’re reading (McCain: Cosby’s Quiet Hero) or where they’re eating dinner (Grassley: Drake’s Diner).

  • It goes without saying that devices like smartphones and e-readers as well as Web platforms such as Facebook and Twitter have become so pervasive that for many they've become necessities in the workplace and at home.

    Most people know this. Everyone apparently, except the people who pay the bills, according to new research.

    Recent studies reveal that many organization leaders may not know just how popular personal devices are with their employees. This lack of awareness can bring along security and privacy issues.

    Research from Unisys and International Data Corp. (IDC) suggests there's an employer-employee gap when it comes to technology usage and awareness at the office — for business or pleasure.

  • “When Deanna Zandt writes that sharing is daring, she expresses the logic of the age, where a shift from hoarding to sharing can provide incredible social leverage. Think of Share This! as a manifesto for social engagement, and as a manual for positive change.”
    –Clay Shirky, author of Here Comes Everybody and faculty member, Interactive Telecommunications Program at New York University
  • We really can’t deny the fact that businesses are testing out Twitter as part of their steps into the social media landscape. You can say it’s a stupid application, that no business gets done there, but there are too many of us (including me) that can disagree and point out business value. I’m not going to address the naysayers much with this. Instead, I’m going to offer 50 thoughts for people looking to use Twitter for business. And by “business,” I mean anything from a solo act to a huge enterprise customer.

    Your mileage may vary, and that’s okay. Further, you might have some really great ideas to add. That’s why we have lively conversations here at [chrisbrogan.com] in the comments section. Jump right in!

  • In March of 2010, the White House Conference on Workplace Flexibility put its stamp on the importance of telecommuting for continuity of operations and fair employment. With uncharacteristic foresight, the federal budget for 2011 calls for a 50 percent increase in telework, and both the House and Senate have bills designed to enforce federal telework mandates because of worries over weather calamities, diseases, terrorism, and fuel prices. The economic mess of 2009 to 2010 has encouraged thousands of out of work people to take up freelancing. And one in four households have dropped their landline telephones in favor of mobile communications.
  • Social media is a growing trend that's here to stay, and many companies are keeping tabs on new social technologies as they emerge.

    With new sites, services, apps and practices that help businesses connect more directly with customers coming online at a rapid pace, it's often helpful to zoom out a bit and keep an eye on upcoming trends on the cusp or just over the horizon.

  • …you think PDF is a problem when it comes to accessibility and Section 508 compliance? Let's talk about that expensive and widely used word-processing software known as Microsoft Word.

    Word appears unaware of Section 508 requirements for tables. In Word, column heading cells occur only when an option to repeat headings on following pages is selected. There's no way in Word to create row headings, no way to manage multilevel headings and no way to set the scope of heading cells.

  • Here are 10 key facts that anyone coming to grips with the problem needs to know. Want the really short version? There's no easy button, but with some planning and just a little know-how, your PDFs can be just as accessible as any web-page.
    1. PDFs can and must comply with Section 508 every bit as much as the HTML pages that link to them.
    2. Section 508 applies to both Federal government agencies and Federal contractors. State and local governments are also adopting similar measures.
    3. Section 508 compliance is most easily achieved when PDF documents are authored in an accessible fashion. Correction of poor or non-existent document structure after the author is "finished" radically increases the difficulty of achieving compliance.
  • The Venezuelan arepas at Mr Pollo and Pica Pica Maize Kitchen that I wrote about in this week's review are part of a larger wave of South American street food ― Argentinian trucks, Chilean empanada shops, Brazilian sandwich stands. Some have been around for years; many are new, particularly the empanada makers. Here are the South American street-food stores and trucks we know about:
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