50 Years Ago Apollo 13 and Coronavirus Tracking Tool

On Episode 487 of the Waves of Tech, we are maneuvering through stories making headlines in the technology industry. Each day we are learning more about the Bluetooth contact tracing tool that Google and Apple are creating to assist with the global public health pandemic. Stateside, the IRS will be releasing their payment tool for taxpayers to receive their economic impact payments so be on the lookout. We revisit the 50 year anniversary of the near catastrophic event of Apollo 13, which occurred 200,000 miles from Earth. Lastly, we discuss how business should be reevaluating their business models and infrastructure as the impact to business and investment is shifting in the current state of affairs.

Google & Apple Creating Tracing Tool

With the news breaking a few days ago, we are beginning to learn what the Google and Apple contact tracing tool for the coronavirus looks like. First, neither company is using location based functions. Second, they plan to use Bluetooth signals for tracing. When cell phone users pass each other, phones exchange an anonymous identification key. This is the “key” to the tool.

  • ID keys allow Apple/Google to contact someone that was near a COVID-19 patient
  • The first phase will be opt-in via an approved app that allows notifications
  • If done correctly, privacy of the user is not compromised and provides anonymity
  • We continue to learn what cell phones and mobile operating systems are capable of

Receiving Federal Government Payments

In the United States, the federal government has passed multiple billion dollar stimulus packages that offer businesses, industries, and taxpayers economic impact payments. The IRS developed the Get My Payment app within weeks to allow paper filing citizens the option to receive funds electronically. Be sure to clink the two links below for details and requirements.

  • Learning that some federal government systems are built off 40 year old technology
  • Watch out for scams as the IRS will not initiate contact with any taxpayer for information
  • This should be a wake out call for the government to invest in infrastructure and talent
  • Be sure to spend your money on local businesses that need the most help right now

The Success & Failure of Apollo 13

Fifty years ago marks a truly incredible yet frightening time in United States space travel and exploration. The crew of the vessel were set to sleep for the night when they experienced an explosion of one of the oxygen tanks. The famous line “Houston, we’ve had a problem here” is born. This led to a path of ingenuity and live saving engineering and scientific steps.

  • NASA astronauts James Lovell Jr., John Swigert Jr., and Fred Haise Jr. were on board
  • The vessel was eventually catapulted back toward Earth by means of the moon’s gravity
  • During the mission, the astronauts lost contact with Mission Control several times
  • Astronauts were instructed how to power down and reroute battery system power

How Business is Reconsidering Structure and Focus

The novel coronavirus is changing the reality and landscape of how business is operating. We are seeing many industries grow while others are being decimated through financial loss. Dish is one corporation that is wholly reevaluating the core business and considering a shift not only in service but in personnel, performance, service, work volume, and investment.

  • Too many corporations have drifted far from their original scope of services and talent
  • With that has come a drop of quality customer service and increase in pricing
  • Other business may eventually turn to focus back on their core competencies again
  • The health impact hopefully turns businesses into proactive entities rather than reactive

Resources & Links

Coronavirus Tracking Tool

Get My Payment App

Economic Impact Payments Link

50 Years Ago Today – Apollo 13

Evaluating Business Models

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