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There’s nothing worse than sitting in a dull, drab cubicle. If you’re going to be stuck in one place for 40 or more hours a week, it might as well be pleasant–for the sake of your sanity and your company’s bottom line. Research shows that how you arrange and decorate an office can make a difference for both mental health and productivity, which is why companies like Google shell out for sweet corporate digs.
Even if your workspace isn’t the hippest thing around, you can spice it up with a few relatively easy changes. 99U has a roundup of some of the latest findings in the science of arranging the most pleasant and efficient workspace possible. Some tips from them:
A Google Cubicle
A 2010 study of London office workers found that being allowed to decorate an office with as many plants and pictures as they wanted made workers 32 percent more productive than the control group that wasn’t given the same option.
A plant-filled office space in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
By the same token:
Make it nature-y.
Studies have shown the presence of plants in an office can improve your ability to pay attention for longer periods of time and reduce stress. So go grab a fern… or a dozen.
Make things round.
We tend to find curves attractive. A study published earlier this summer found that curvilinear spaces were more likely to be seen as beautiful than plain rectangular spaces. A previous study had also established that we tend to find round furniture more appealing than furniture with straight edges. So, basically, the Oval Office has the right idea.
Read the full list at 99U.
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Find out how to hand a perfect data science internship in this ultimate guide for beginners
You undoubtedly struggled to find the ideal data science internship as a beginner in tech. Newcomers to the IT business frequently have questions about which companies to apply to and what to do next. Regrettably, this concern is justified given that internships may make or break your career in data science.What is a Data Science Internship?
Any program that allows a novice in data science to gain practical experience, hone their abilities, and comprehend the breadth of the discipline is considered a data science internship. It typically lasts three to four months, although depending on the organization, some may last up to a year.
You will gather, examine, and compile data with more seasoned experts as a data science intern, and you will produce polished reports on your findings. In addition to volunteer work or paid employment, these activities eventually result in important industry experience useful to employers.Skills Required
There are a few abilities you must have mastered before beginning your quest. You’ll have a better chance of getting a data science internship if you possess these abilities before submitting your application. Moreover, the majority of employers will demand that candidates have some previous knowledge, and a select few could conduct tests before hiring them. Hence, a couple of them are shown below.
Knowledge of Programming and Scripting Languages
Although it’s not essential to data science, programming may be useful for managing and visualizing enormous amounts of unstructured data. The most popular computer language for data science is Python, while R offers more flexibility. The languages Julia, Matlab, Java, SAS, and C++ are also used in data science. Nonetheless, keep in mind that you are applying as an intern; nobody wants you to be an expert right away.
Knowledge of the Core Data Science Tools
It will be possible to automate some processes and organize data by writing scripts and learning algorithms, but those are not the only skills required for a data science internship. Also, you’ll need to correctly analyze your data, create charts, and use prediction models. Your data science tools will be useful in this situation. Data scientists now have alternatives for gathering, assembling, cleaning, and manipulating data thanks to technology. One of these choices is Microsoft’s Power BI, a revolutionary program that converts massive amounts of data into appealing charts and dashboards. Excel or Tableau are good substitutes that are similarly effective.
Although it could seem difficult, especially if you’re self-taught, statistics isn’t an insurmountable challenge. You will be able to relate to and evaluate your data more successfully if you have a foundation in statistics. Data science relies on statistics and mathematics to support some of its fundamental ideas, such as logistic regression and clustering. You have a better chance of landing data science internships and can see your career path more clearly if you have a basic grasp of the field. Don’t be concerned if you don’t have a degree in statistics since you can begin a career in data science.Tips
What should you do next to guarantee that you secure desirable internships? If you aren’t applying the talents you learn, then learning a lot of them won’t be of much use to you.
Actively Pursue Personal Projects
As they say, practice makes perfect, and data science is no exception. To get picked for good data science internships, you need something to present in your resume or portfolio, generating the necessity for personal projects.
Create an ATS-Compliant Resume and Cover Letter
After your tasks are prepared, you may start writing your CV. This could seem simple at first, but seemingly insignificant errors could end up costing you. Failure to understand how to create an ATS-friendly resume is one such error.
Attend Data Science Events and Tech Workshops to Expand Your Network
Even in the IT industry, your network determines your net worth. In addition to applications, recommendations, and referrals are another excellent strategy to get data science internships. Having a large network increases your chances of receiving a favorable recommendation, and networking may be done effectively by going to events. Attending non-tech events is not forbidden, but networking with individuals in your industry or closely related professions will be more beneficial.
Make Contact with Startups
There is a widespread misunderstanding among techies that startups don’t require data scientists. This is untrue and limiting, though. Apply to larger corporations, but don’t be afraid to ask about possible data science internships at local startups and smaller businesses.
Use GitHub and Kaggle Often
ChatGPT service coming soon to Azure, according to Microsoft
If you still weren’t happy with Azure, Microsoft has just made a great announcement.
The tech company is soon going to integrate the ChatGPT service with its software.
Microsoft, to this day, hasn’t specified an exact release data or further details about it.
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The Redmond-based tech giant is working on a lot of projects at the same time, trying to improve the suite of Windows products as much as it possibly can.
That being said, know that some of the other software solutions that the company has will also get enhanced in the near future.
Last week we shared that Bing was about to get an OpenAI ChatGPT chatbot integration, so now let’s focus on Azure a little.
Why? Well, because the tech giant has something special prepared for Azure customers everywhere, and we’re about to share that information right now.Get ready for an Azure ChatGPT integration soon
There’s no denying that ChatGPT has been making a lot of waves in mainstream media lately. so it was pretty obvious it was going to catch Microsoft’s attention.
If you didn’t know, the capabilities and potential use cases demonstrated by the GPT-3 large language model have managed to astonish consumers and enterprises alike.
Microsoft, which already invested $1 billion in ChatGPT’s founding company OpenAI, with reports of more financing to come, wants to capitalize on this momentum.
Therefore, the Redmond company has committed to launching ChatGPT on Azure soon, so we can definitely get excited about this.
In fact, Microsoft has announced that its Azure OpenAI service is now generally available, which means that customers can access complex AI models such as GPT-3.5, Codex, and DALL•E 2 on the cloud.
GPT is actually the family of large language models powering ChatGPT, Codex is the model that is used to convert natural language to programming code in GitHub Copilot, and DALL•E can generate images after receiving only textual inputs.
Not surprising at all, it also claims that customers can build AI applications on Azure by leveraging purpose-built AI-optimized infrastructure with enterprise-grade functionalities.
We are confident in the quality of the AI models we are using and offering customers today, and we strongly believe they will empower businesses and people to innovate in entirely new and exciting ways.
Please keep in mind that, although ChatGPT will be available as a service on Azure for customers to build upon soon, the Redmond tech giant hasn’t really defined a concrete release date yet.
All that’s left to do right now is just wait and see when Microsoft will permanently implement this new integration.
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Quite a few viewers and readers have asked me to do a behind the scenes look at my video editing workspace, so in this latest edition of Back to the Mac I’ve decided to do just that.
Although my setup is currently built around a Mac Pro + Pro Display XDR, a similar setup can be achieved with virtually any Mac machine and monitor combination. Watch our hands-on behind the scenes video for a look at the hardware on my editing desk.2023 Mac Pro
Although I do at times use a MacBook Pro and iPad Pro for work, the Mac Pro (hands-on) is the current centerpiece of my video editing workflow. It’s where I run all of the software related to creating videos. Although my previous base model iMac Pro, with its 32GB of RAM and 8-core Xeon CPU, was more than capable enough for my video editing needs, the Mac Pro is an improvement in some ways.Jeff’s video editing workspace walkthrough
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As I’ve explained several times before, I primarily enjoy using the Mac Pro due to its upgradability. Being able to add more RAM and more storage space is something you couldn’t do on the iMac Pro without jumping through a bunch of hoops. It’s nice to be able to crack open the Mac Pro and upgrade the machine in just a few minutes.
For video editing in particular, the ability to upgrade the internal storage of the Mac Pro is convenient. Not only can you add an absurd amount of SSD storage, but you can also add a full-on 24TB Promise Pegasus RAID system internally, if you choose to do so.
But the Mac Pro is far from perfect for many casual or so-called “pro-sumer” editors. First and foremost, unlike the iMac, it doesn’t come with a built-in display, which could potentially drive up the cost significantly. It’s also lacking conveniences like an SD Card slot, and easy-to-access I/O like on the back of the iMac Pro.
In my upcoming review of the Mac Pro, I’ll be discussing these potential shortcomings more in-depth. I think most “pro-sumer” users will be better served by an iMac or iMac Pro, but there are definitely some users out there that would benefit more from the Mac Pro over the long term.Pro XDR Display
The 32-inch native 6K Pro Display XDR (hands-on) is a dream display for editing 4K video. It provides you with the workspace to view full resolution 4K while still having plenty of room for the timeline and browse in Final Cut Pro X. And if HDR workflows are a part of your routine, then the true 10-bit XDR Display with its P3 wide color and 1000 nits of sustained brightness and 1600 nits of peak brightness should more than meet your needs.
Although it can be handy to have two displays on the desktop, I find that the Pro Display XDR has enough size and on-screen real estate to make a secondary display unnecessary. For example, it’s possible to have a Final Cut Pro X session going while showing a Safari or Ulysses window on the screen at the same time.Keychron K2 wireless mechanical keyboard
The newest item to my video editing workspace is the Keychron K2 (review) wireless mechanical keyboard.
Wireless mechanical keyboards are still a rarity for whatever reason, but my overall impression of the Keychron K2 is fairly glowing. Not only is it wireless, but it utilizes Gateron Brown keyboard switches which provide great tactile response. The keys also have an extremely subtle tacky feeling, which adds to the tactile response.
My biggest issue with the Keychron K2 is battery life, which admittedly isn’t great, but it’s not bad enough to make it a deal-breaker. Be sure to check out our full review of the K2 for the details.Universal Audio Arrow
The Thunderbolt 3-powered Universal Audio Arrow (hands-on) is my go-to audio interface for monitoring and recording audio for my videos. Its bus-powered compact all-aluminum design means that it looks nice on the desktop.
I also love the fact that the UA Arrow places its XLR ports on the rear. This design allows my video editing workspace to stay relatively clutter-free in the process.
But it’s the unit’s UAD plug-ins that make it such a staple for my voiceover workflow…
The UAD plug-ins allow users to custom tailor and fine-tune the sound of voices and instruments in a granular way, and these effects are applied on the fly in real-time with no discernible latency. I’ve built, what I like to believe, is a great-sounding processing chain that allows my voice to shine on video voiceovers.Sennheiser MKH 416
Before I incorporated the Sennheiser MKH 416 shotgun microphone into my voiceover workflow, I had quite a few friends suggest that I wouldn’t regret purchasing the legendary microphone. I couldn’t bring myself to drop the $999 MSRP, but I was able to pick one up on sale at B&H for $600 a few years back.
The MKH 416 is a legendary microphone for good reason — it sounds amazing with rich and deep vocals, rejects noise incredibly well, is super flexible in that it can be used in a variety of applications, and it’s built well. I think this microphone sounds amazing when paired with the UA Arrow, but I understand that sound “quality” can be subjective.Yellowtec Mika
The Yellowtec Mika is hands-down the best microphone boom arm on the market, and people seem to finally be agreeing with me after all these years of using it because you see it everywhere now. The Mika features rock-solid German design with its aluminum arm, along with an easy-to-use friction mounting mechanism that has yet to fail me over the years.
What makes the Mika so nice compared to the average boom arm is that the XLR cable is housed inside of the unit itself, which provides a super-clean look. Another major benefit of such a design is that you don’t have to worry about pinching your fingers in between the slats found on lesser solutions. I’ve noticed that other companies have started to use a pinch-free design, which is great, but the Mika was the first.Audio-Technica ATH-M50x
Headphones are an integral part of the voiceover process, and the Audio-Technica ATH-M50x (review) has been a part of my regular workflow for years. Not only have the headphones held up remarkably well under continued usage, but they sound good as well.
The biggest downside with these headphones is the ear cups, which aren’t as comfortable as I’d like, and will start to wear out after a couple of years. I recommend replacing the ear cups upfront with more comfortable third-party cups.iLoud Micro Monitors
Although I use my headphones 80% of the time when monitoring audio for video editing, the newly-acquired iLoud Micro Monitors handle the rest of the heavy lifting. These monitors, which were recommended to me by friend of 9to5Mac Jonathan Morrison, sound much better than their small stature might indicate.
Although you won’t get the type of low-end sound possible with larger monitors featuring larger woofers, or via setups with a dedicated subwoofer, I was surprised by how much punch the Micro Monitors had.
The iLoud Micro Monitors produce accurate sound, and they do a great job of resisting distortion even at high volume levels. I was impressed when the baseline from Alex Lustig’s Skyless came in at the 0:36 second mark, with the Micro Monitors handling it superbly.
Since I don’t usually monitor my audio from desktop monitors, I wanted good sound, but I didn’t want to add a pair of hulking speakers to my desktop. The Micro Monitors present a good compromise, being small enough to fit easily on my desktop while sounding good enough to be worthy of a spot in the first place. Plus I think they look pretty good when paired with the Pro Display XDR. What do you guys think?CalDigit TS3 Plus
Because the Mac Pro is on the floor, and the Pro Display XDR outright lacks the ability to daisy chain with Thunderbolt 3, I think that a Thunderbolt 3 dock is a must-have for such a setup. A dock like the CalDigit TS3 Plus (review) allows for quick access to a wealth of different I/O options right from the comforts of your desktop.
Even years after its debut, the TS3 Plus remains one of the best Thunderbolt 3 dock options available. I do, however, wish that dock manufactures would design a dock more geared towards the needs of Mac Pro users.Herman Miller Aeron
I’d gone 7 years with a run-of-the-mill chair from Office Depot before I finally decided to invest in my health and purchase a decent chair. I can’t believe I waited this long for something so fundamentally necessary.
With all of the tech that passes through my hands year in and year out, tech that’s here today and gone tomorrow, I find that it was downright irresponsible of me to let my body languish in a chair that provided such terrible ergonomic support.
Depending on the subject, editing sessions can take hours or days, especially if you’re meticulous about the details. Sitting in a bad chair can make a big difference on your overall comfort, which can lead to crankiness, low productivity, and other negative side effects.
I purchased a used Herman Miller Aeron from eBay, and it’s probably the item that I value the most over every other product on this list. That’s because it’s made such a difference in how I feel after a long day of sitting.
If you’re on the fence, just get it. You can get a used Aeron off eBay for less than half of what one costs new, and it will last you a very long time.UpDesk Standing Desk
Unlike the Aeron, I adopted the UpDesk standing desk (hands-on) early on, and I’m happy I did. I don’t use the desk in stand mode as much as I should, (once I adopt better cord organization, I plan to start using the standing functionality more regularly) but I notice that I feel more productive when I’ve added some standing into my daily work pattern.Key software used in my video editing workspace
I use the following software each and every day when making videos:
Final Cut Pro X – The best NLE for Mac users
Compressor – Video encoding companion tool for Final Cut Pro X
Apple Motion – Motion graphics tool that integrates with FCP X
ScreenFlow – The best screen capture tool on Mac
Affinity Photo – The best photo editor on Mac
Affinity Designer – The best graphic design tool for Mac users
Of course, the Mac Pro can easily run all of these applications simultaneously. I’ll be back with an overview of the key software that I use to make videos in a follow-up walkthrough.9to5Mac’s Take
These products are just a small sample of the tools that I use to make videos, but this provides a good overview of the bulk of the post-production video editing workspace that I use each day. In my opinion, there is no one-size-fits-all perfect editing setup, but these products will give you a good idea of the tools that I use to personally craft videos.
If there is a demand for it, I’ll provide a post going over the cameras I use, my camera mounting and capture setups, and the techniques and tools that I use when actually behind the camera.
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Workspaces in Linux help you keep your tasks segregated and organized, especially in situations when you’re working on multiple tasks in parallel. For example, in one workspace, you can keep all your office-related applications, while in the other, all your personal stuff.
Imagine a scenario where you are doing your office-related work while a movie download is going on in some other workspace. And you want to keep track of the download process. So, what will you do? Simply switch workspaces to take a quick look at the download progress.
While switching workspaces does the job, it’s not an efficient solution given that you need to take a break from whatever you are doing, switch to the workspace where the download is in progress, and then switch back again. What if you could get a live preview of the workspace where the movie download is going on? Won’t it save you some of your precious time? And don’t forget the frequent breaks that you have to take otherwise.
In this article we will discuss a way you can have a live preview in one workspace and a separate workspace in another on Ubuntu operating system. But before we begin, please keep in mind that all instructions, commands, and examples mentioned in this article have been tested on Ubuntu 16.04.How to have live previews for workspaces in Ubuntu
There’s a dedicated software that lets you have live previews for workspaces on Ubuntu systems, and the software in question is WindowSpy.
To download and install WindowSpy on your Ubuntu box, run the following commands:
Once the above mentioned commands are successful, you can head to the Dash to launch the tool.
Here’s an example of what the live preview of a window from a workspace looks like (I was downloading an Ubuntu ISO file).
Please keep in mind that what WindowSpy gives is a near live preview and not an exact live preview because the preview window is updated every three seconds.
The tool also offers some customization options (accessible through the “Preferences” option in the drop-down menu) like ability to increase/decrease the preview window size, border width, and background color, as well as the window’s position on your desktop. There’s also an option where you can set the tool to launch at system startup.Conclusion
Downloading and installing WindowSpy is a cakewalk, and its usage isn’t complex either. For the little effort you put in setting this tool up, the benefit it provides is huge – you don’t have to frequently switch workspaces, saving time as well as effort. If you’ve been looking for a tool like this, I’d encourage you to give WindowSpy a try – I am sure you won’t be disappointed.
Himanshu Arora is a freelance technical writer by profession but a software programmer and Linux researcher at heart. He covers software tutorials, reviews, tips/tricks, and more. Some of his articles have been featured on IBM developerworks, ComputerWorld, and in Linux Journal.
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Is a paper airplane a drone? For the Federal Aviation Administration, responsible for regulating America’s skies, this is no longer an idle question. The commercial use of drones is currently prohibited in the United States, unless an operator receives an exemption from the FAA that allows them to fly their drone.
According to the exemption, Sachs is free to fly a Tailor Toys PowerUp 3.0, which is a smart-phone controlled propeller that attaches to a paper airplane. The drone retails for about $50, and can fly up to 180 feet in distance with a total unencumbered flight time of around 10 minutes. Here is what it looks like in flight:
When we first covered the PowerUp 3.0, we perhaps prematurely labeled it “one of the purest “just a toy” drones out there.” Sachs’ petition requests the authorization of this drone to “conduct aerial photography and videography.” There are cameras small enough and light enough to fit on the paper plane, so this usage is technically possible if extremely unlikely.
In the introduction to the FAA’s Certificate of Authorization for this drone use, it curiously says that “The FAA has determined that good cause exists for not publishing a summary of the petition in the Federal Register because the requested exemption would not set a precedent.” This is as close as the letter comes to acknowledging that it is super weird for the government to regulate paper planes. That doesn’t stop the FAA from spelling out 31 additional restrictions. Some highlights:
“Operations authorized by this grant of exemption are limited to the Tailor Toys PowerUp 3.0 when weighing less than 55 pounds including payload.” Reminder: this is a paper airplane with an engine attached.
“The [drone] may not be operated at a speed exceeding 87 knots (100 miles per hour).” This is, again, a paper airplane with a top speed of under 12 mph.
“The [drone] must be operated at an altitude of no more than 400 feet above ground level.” This paper airplane with an engine has a maximum range of 180 feet.
Contacted via Twitter, Peter Sachs expressed a genuine sense of incredulity that the FAA even granted the exemption, because it shows they’re choosing to treat a paper airplane like any other drone instead of the handmade flying toy that it is. A comparison with three other certificate authorizations also published on August 26th reveals the “requested exemption would not set a precedent” language to be standard, as well as the 31 additional restrictions. This likely means that the FAA attaches these restrictions to every application for an exemption involving a drone under 55 pounds–even if the drone in question is just a souped-up paper airplane.
Did the FAA mean to define paper airplanes as aircraft? Reached by email, FAA spokesperson Les Dorr said “If you look at the exemption documents, Mr. Sachs submitted a valid petition for exemption, and we granted the requested relief.” Pressed if the FAA will treat every paper airplane with a motor attached as a drone, Dorr replied “Every petition for a Section 333 exemption is reviewed individually and considered on its own merits.”
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