May 19, 2020

Google I/O and Google Music hype

Google
Android
Business Review Brasil
PIB
Bizclik Editor
2 min
Google I/O and Google Music hype

 

It’s a big day for Google and its millions of fans. I’d even go so far to say that it’s as if Christmas came early this year and Google is gracing us with presents that we can enjoy for years to come. Google I/O, the search giant’s massive developer conference catering to app programmers for Google’s platforms, is kicking off today and is live streaming its speeches. Major announcements regarding Android, Chrome and all of its hidden prizes and treasures will be announced today and we’re on the edge of our seats.

Many tech junkies are expecting Google to launch its music service, considering that Amazon and Apple have taken the online and cloud-based music industry by storm. We can imagine that Android smartphones will have some new shiny bells and whistles with its music libraries and capabilities. Google Music Beta is apparently invite-only according to media outlets, but users will be added to the new platform in the future; the site is free for a limited time.

See top stories in the WDM Content Network:

Google Music will be able to run on all Android devices, including tablets and smartphones; create custom playlists; edit track information and get play counts, just like in iTunes; listen to music offline; upload songs to a cloud-based directory; and wirelessly and automatically sync playlists.

Those over at the Google campus are pretty excited for today and tomorrow’s product announcements. The latest post on the blog says:

It’s hard to believe a little more than two and a half years ago, we were just one device, launching in one country, on one carrier. Thanks to the ecosystem of manufacturers, developers and carriers, the platform has grown exponentially. There are now:

  • 100 million activated Android devices
  • 400,000 new Android devices activated every day
  • 200,000 free and paid applications available in Android Market
  • 4.5 billion applications installed from Android Market

Android’s latest OS version is also the talk of the town and is aptly named Ice Cream Sandwich. The addition should “deliver one operating system that works everywhere, regardless of device,” the blog says. Ice Cream Sandwich brings out the best from Honeycomb on tablet devices to the smartphone, including a holographic user interface, multitasking, richer widgets, and a new launcher. 

We're excited for today's releases. Stay posted for any significant developments.

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Jun 12, 2021

How changing your company's software code can prevent bias

Deltek
diversity
softwarecode
inclusivity
Lisa Roberts, Senior Director ...
3 min
Removing biased terminology from software can help organisations create a more inclusive culture, argues Lisa Roberts, Senior Director of HR at Deltek

Two-third of tech professionals believe organizations aren’t doing enough to address racial inequality. After all, many companies will just hire a DEI consultant, have a few training sessions and call it a day. 

Wanting to take a unique yet impactful approach to DEI, Deltek, the leading global provider of software and solutions for project-based businesses, took a look at  and removed all exclusive terminology in their software code. By removing terms such as ‘master’ and ‘blacklist’ from company coding, Deltek is working to ensure that diversity and inclusion are woven into every aspect of their organization. 

Business Chief North America talks to Lisa Roberts, Senior Director of HR and Leader of Diversity & Inclusion at Deltek to find out more.

Why should businesses today care about removing company bias within their software code?  

We know that words can have a profound impact on people and leave a lasting impression. Many of the words that have been used in a technology environment were created many years ago, and today those words can be harmful to our customers and employees. Businesses should use words that will leave a positive impact and help create a more inclusive culture in their organization

What impact can exclusive terms have on employees? 

Exclusive terms can have a significant impact on employees. It starts with the words we use in our job postings to describe the responsibilities in the position and of course, we also see this in our software code and other areas of the business. Exclusive terminology can be hurtful, and even make employees feel unwelcome. That can impact a person’s desire to join the team, stay at a company, or ultimately decide to leave. All of these critical actions impact the bottom line to the organization.    

Please explain how Deltek has removed bias terminology from its software code

Deltek’s engineering team has removed biased terminology from our products, as well as from our documentation. The terms we focused on first that were easy to identify include blacklist, whitelist, and master/slave relationships in data architecture. We have also made some progress in removing gendered language, such as changing he and she to they in some documentation, as well as heteronormative language. We see this most commonly in pick lists that ask to identify someone as your husband or wife. The work is not done, but we are proud of how far we’ve come with this exercise!

What steps is Deltek taking to ensure biased terminology doesn’t end up in its code in the future?

What we are doing at Deltek, and what other organizations can do, is to put accountability on employees to recognize when this is happening – if you see something, say something! We also listen to feedback our customers give us and have heard their feedback on this topic. Those are both very reactive things of course, but we are also proactive. We have created guidance that identifies words that are more inclusive and also just good practice for communicating in a way that includes and respects others.

What advice would you give to other HR leaders who are looking to enhance DEI efforts within company technology? 

My simple advice is to start with what makes sense to your organization and culture. Doing nothing is worse than doing something. And one of the best places to start is by acknowledging this is not just an HR initiative. Every employee owns the success of D&I efforts, and employees want to help the organization be better. For example, removing bias terminology was an action initiated by our Engineering and Product Strategy teams at Deltek, not HR. You can solicit the voices of employees by asking for feedback in engagement surveys, focus groups, and town halls. We hear great recommendations from employees and take those opportunities to improve. 

 

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