May 19, 2020

Webroot keeps drunks off of social media sites

Social Media
Firefox plugin
Bizclik Editor
2 min
Webroot keeps drunks off of social media sites

Software company Webroot has just launched a new program that will inevitably save the shame and embarrassment of many late-night, beer-drinking, social media addicts across the nation. The Social Media Sobriety Test is a Firefox plugin that doesn’t let users post on their social media pages late at night without first passing a sobriety “field test.”

Users specify a time span when they don’t think they’d be on the Internet while sober – usually in the wee hours of the morning. Anytime the user tries to access the Internet during that timeframe, he or she would have to prove their sobriety using their mouse to pass a sobriety test.

Like getting pulled over by a police officer, the driver, err, I mean, typer would have to pass tests like making your cursor follow a moving finger for 30 seconds without going messing up, or trace a straight line, and even typing the alphabet backwards within 60 seconds. (I’m not even sure I could do that soberly!)

The real kicker is that if the user fails the Social Media Sobriety Test, the following is automatically posted on your status: (Your name here) is too intoxicated to post right now.”
And you’re caught red-handed. This is absolutely genius and a fantastic way for slapping the wrist of the perpetrators who type god-awful things late at night and have no recollection of the damage they had caused the night before. And you know you have many of these “friends” and “followers.”

This brings up an issue among those who have less than dexterous hand-and-eye coordination (like me). If you wake up in the middle of the night and remember you forgot to send an extremely important email, you may have to wait until the next morning to turn on your computer and Internet if you fumble too much during the Sobriety Test.

Don't believe me, check out the video

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Jun 21, 2021

How AWS helps NASCAR delight its fans

3 min
Customer obsession and working backwards from the customer is a mantra of Amazon Web Services (AWS), epitomizing its partnership with NASCAR

AWS needs no introduction to readers of Technology Magazine but we rarely get an opportunity to look closely at how it serves the sports sector. All major sports draw in a huge supporter base that they want to nurture and support. Technology is the key to every major sports organization and enabling this is the driving force for AWS, says Matt Hurst, Head of Global Sports Marketing and Communications for AWS. “In sports, as in every industry, machine learning and artificial intelligence and high performance computing are helping to usher in the next wave of technical sports innovation.”

AWS approaches sports in three principal areas. “The first is unlocking data’s potential: leagues and teams hold vast amounts of data and AWS is enabling them to analyze that data at scale and make better, more informed decisions. The second is engaging and delighting fans: with AWS fans are getting deeper insights through visually compelling on-screen graphics and interactive Second Screen experiences. And the third is rapidly improving sports performance: leagues and teams are using AWS to innovate like never before.”

Among the many global brands that partner with AWS are Germany's Bundesliga, the NFL, F1, the NHL, the PGA Tour and of course NASCAR. NASCAR has worked with AWS on its digital transformation (migrating it's 18 petabyte video archive containing 70 years of historical footage to AWS), to optimize its cloud data center operations and to enable its global brand expansion. AWS Media Services powers the NASCAR Drive mobile app, delivering broadcast-quality content for more than 80 million fans worldwide. The platform, including AWS Elemental MediaLive and AWS Elemental MediaStore, helps NASCAR provide fans instant access to the driver’s view of the race track during races, augmented by audio and a continually updated leaderboard. “And NASCAR will use our flagship machine learning service Amazon SageMaker to train deep learning models to enhance metadata and video analytics.”

Using AWS artificial intelligence and machine learning, NASCAR aims to deliver even more fan experiences that they'd never have anticipated. “Just imagine a race between Dale Earnhardt Sr and Dale Jr at Talladega! There's a bright future, and we're looking forward to working with NASCAR, helping them tap into AWS technology to continue to digitally transform, innovate and create even more fan experiences.”

Just as AWS is helping NASCAR bridge that historical gap between the legacy architecture and new technology, more customers are using AWS for machine learning than any other provider. As an example, who would have thought five years ago that NFL would be using  ML to predict and prevent injury to its players? Since 2017, the league has utilized AWS as its official cloud and ML provider for the NFL Next Gen Stats (NGS) platform, which provides real-time location data, speed, and acceleration for every player during every play on every inch of the field. “One of the most potentially revolutionary components of the NFL-AWS partnership,” says Matt Hurst, “is the development of the 'Digital Athlete,' a computer simulation model that can be used to replicate infinite scenarios within the game environment—including variations by position and environmental factors, emphasizing the league's commitment to player safety.”

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