-Updates 13.3 E-Business 2.0: Reinventing Web Commerce 8.3 Specialized Networks: From GPS to Digital Money 8.4 The Network Advantage

Mobile Devices and the New Shopping Experience

Smart phones and tablets are changing the way we shop, and the change is happening at digital speeds. In some stores, you can pay by flashing your smart phone and have a receipt mailed from the clerk’s tablet. No cash, no plastic cards, no paper, no waiting. This NPR story surveys the world of mobile-tech shopping.

-Context 10.2 Computer Security: Reducing Risks 9.2 Inside the Web 9.3 Internet Issues: Ethical and Political Dilemmas

How Scam-savvy Are You?

Cyber-scammers are always looking for new ways to get you to reveal valuable personal information. Can you tell the difference between legitimate requests and cyber scams? Take this short quiz to find out. The quiz is a promotion for OpenDNS, a security company, but it’s worth your time even if you’re not shopping for protection. If you’re not able to identify all of the fake sites in the quiz, the feedback page will show you the clues that you missed so you can be more scam-savvy in the future.

-Context 11.1 Where Computers Work 15.5 Question-Answering Machines 7.3 Database Trends

Watson Isn’t Just Playing Games Anymore

IBM’s Watson, the famous artificial-intelligence system that became a quiz show champ, is now poised to transform the fields of medicine, finance, education, and more. In some ways Watson is an industrial-strength version of Siri, the personal assistant built into iPhones. Is Watson leading us into a whole new era of cognitive computing? This fascinating Fast Company article puts Watson in the context of today’s data-driven world and speculates on a future that’s much bigger than talking smart phones.