Category: Software

Products – Software

Wales’ tech cities: Swansea and Cardiff lead chorus for tech jobs boom 0

Wales’ tech cities: Swansea and Cardiff lead chorus for tech jobs boom

Never mind Brexit, the two Welsh cities of Swansea and Cardiff are putting their tech credentials on the table. Our Celtic cousins in Wales are experiencing something of a tech jobs boom, with 103 new digital start-ups adding to the 117,470 tech workers in Swansea and Cardiff in the past year. Recent arrivals include AI start-up Amplyfi, which received a £400,000 unsecured loan from the Welsh government. ‘Last year, £4.6bn (68pc) of the UK’s tech investment was spent in regions outside the capital’ – RUTH JACOBS The traditional coal and steel industries of Wales were once the bedrock of the Welsh economy.

But now, according to Ruth Jacobs, managing director of Randstad business solutions, Cardiff and Swansea are two of the UK’s fastest-growing tech cities, due to investment in both graduate opportunities and the digital transformation of the country as a whole. Digital investment in the UK’s tech industry was estimated at £6.8bn in 2016. Putting the valleys in Silicon Valley In a recent review of Swansea and Cardiff by Randstad 1 , it was noted that the investment in the region has a symbiotic relationship with the education sector, with input from four major universities: Cardiff University, the University of South Wales, Cardiff Metropolitan University and Swansea University.

Jacobs said the universities provide a steady flow of IT-literate graduates to support the growing industry requirements. Swansea University was ranked 16th in the UK for graduate employment in the recent Times Higher Education World University Rankings. The digital staff requirements 2 in the tech sector are growing overall across the UK, adding to the existing 1.64m tech jobs.

Swansea and Cardiff are on track to becoming the leading tech employees, rivalling nearby Bristol. “Last year, £4.6bn (68pc) of the UK’s tech investment was spent in regions outside the capital,” Jacobs said. “Cardiff and Swansea have 17,470 tech jobs, and last year recorded 103 new tech and digital start-ups, such as Amplyfi, using artificial intelligence for data mining.” In terms of infrastructure, broadband connectivity across Wales is being bolstered as part of a Welsh government scheme to ensure ‘super-fast’ broadband, which will support investments not only in the cities but also across the south-east region. Development Bank of Wales is planning to support Welsh businesses with £1bn funding and unique investment projects such as the Compound Semiconductor Applications Catapult 3  in Cardiff, launched in 2016. This investment aims to fund innovative regional projects.

On the strength of the Swansea University IT programme, Swansea Bay City Region has secured a £500m deal to turn the area into a digital super-hub. In terms of start-ups, TechHub Swansea 4  provides office space for tech entrepreneurs with networking and lunch-and-learn events as part of the working landscape. Cardiff has similar innovation support, with  Tramshed Tech  5 supporting its co-working community.

Additionally, the ease of booking desk space at the Indycube 6  tech hub, available across Wales, nurtures the community. The Alacrity Foundation 7 ,  Cardiff Start 8 and the launch of  Innovation Point 9 ’s Welsh technology accelerator programme – named ‘Digital Dozen’ – are three programmes all aimed at supporting tech growth. “Swansea and Cardiff have great road and rail links to both London and Bristol,” Jacobs said. “Swansea is three hours by train from London, and Cardiff just over two hours. As a lifestyle choice, both cities are a 30-minute drive from areas of outstanding national beauty like the Gower Peninsula and the Brecon Beacons. “The house prices are also under the UK average, at £185,639,” she added.

References ^ Randstad (www.randstad.co.uk) ^ digital staff requirements (www.randstad.co.uk) ^ Compound Semiconductor Applications Catapult (csa.catapult.org.uk) ^ TechHub Swansea (swansea.techhub.com) ^ Tramshed Tech  (tramshedtech.net) ^ Indycube (indycube.cymru) ^ The Alacrity Foundation (www.alacrityfoundation.co.uk) ^ Cardiff Start (cardiffstart.com) ^ Innovation Point (www.innovationpoint.uk)

Microsoft considers killing Paint 0

Microsoft considers killing Paint

Microsoft has listed Paint in a list of deprecated features[1] in the Windows 10 Fall Creator’s Update.

Paint being listed as “deprecated” means it is no longer in active development and may be removed from future releases.

Other deprecated features include System Image Backup, various IIS features, and Windows Powershell 2.0.

Features being completely removed with the update include Outlook Express, the screen-saver functionality in Themes, and the 3D Builder app.

Microsoft revealed the Fall Creators Update earlier this year, which was set to include Timeline, Pick Up Where You Left Off, Cloud Clipboard, and OneDrive Files On-Demand.

Microsoft executive Joe Belfiore said in June, however, that Timeline won’t make it into the update. “We’re planning for it to be in early Insider builds shortly after the Fall Creators Update is out,” he said.

Timeline, combined with Pick Up Where You Left Off, will let you switch between tasks on multiple devices – including those running Android and iOS.

It also lets you look “back in time” to find what you were working on and resume that session.

The Verge reported[2] that Microsoft plans to release the Fall Creators Update for Windows 10 in September.

Now read: Windows 10 Timeline feature delayed[3]

References

  1. ^ deprecated features (support.microsoft.com)
  2. ^ The Verge reported (www.theverge.com)
  3. ^ Windows 10 Timeline feature delayed (mybroadband.co.za)
Silent Echo lets you talk to Alexa on Slack 0

Silent Echo lets you talk to Alexa on Slack

Bespoken has created a bot named Silent Echo[1], which allows users to interact with Alexa over Slack.

Silent Echo converts text to audio, sends the audio to Alexa, and returns the audio output from Alexa to the user as text.

Users can activate Silent Echo by adding it as a virtual Alexa device on their Amazon account.

Additionally, Slack users can install the bot and interact with it via instant message or by mentioning the bot in a public channel.

Silent Echo supports Alexa Smart Home skills and custom skills, and is available to install from the official website[2].

Now read: I built a voice-controlled Amazon Echo using a Raspberry Pi[3]

References

  1. ^ Silent Echo (silentecho.bespoken.io)
  2. ^ official website (silentecho.bespoken.io)
  3. ^ I built a voice-controlled Amazon Echo using a Raspberry Pi (mybroadband.co.za)