Business and Technology Articles Contributed by UWA Students

Month: February 2018

VPNs offer secure gateways but are not invisibility shields


People clicking away on smart devices is a 21st century fact. Any kind of information is just a finger click away. But this ease comes at a cost. If one has access to all kinds of information then it also exposes the user to the same.

Your internet activity can be traced through your IP (internet protocol) address. Any website that you access can see your IP address, which could ultimately be used by watchers to track down your exact location. A smart way of circumventing this is through VPNs or virtual private networks, which have been in existence since the internet but are fast gaining in popularity.

Providing Reliability

A VPN facilitates reliable sharing of information between remote computers and connected devices through a virtual network using the internet.   A VPN allows clients to exchange data securely through encryption. The demand for VPNs has gone up over the last couple of years. Telecommuting and remote working has become common in today’s world of startups with access to remote talent in any part of the world. Such flexibility allows companies to retain talent and provide a work-life balance.

A recent survey by the Global Workplace Analytics and Flexjobs revealed that the number of telecommuting workers has increased 115% in a decade.

“The impact of remote work is changing; employers really need to pay attention to it and not ignore it any longer,” says Sara Sutton Fell, CEO of FlexJobs.

Added Encryption

Moreover, with cybersecurity fears gaining ground, VPNs provide that extra layer of firewall with its encrypted data exchange and are a must against corporate espionage. A VPN gives you an additional layer of protection online from cyber stalking, government surveillance, hackers and spies. Every time a person opens a web browser, it is stored in the database of that search engine. In short, they can track your browsing history and location.

Other Features

Some governments are mulling more control over internet access to citizens. VPNs are a way to circumvent such controls and fears of an Orwellian dystopia. China, some countries in the Middle East, Russia and others routinely block access to certain social media sites and search engines citing security concerns.

But it would be a fallacy to think VPNs are some sort of magic invisibility shield. They at best provide you with some anonymity and obscurity. VPNs come with risk and can compromise data. Some experts advice building an in-house VPN to companies. “It’s very, very hard to make recommendations about VPNs,” says Joseph Lorenzo Hall, chief technologist at the Center for Democracy and Technology.

Be Careful

There are many VPN providers offering services but one should be cautious while choosing an authentic provider. If buying a VPN service be sure to check these boxes. Avoid opting for free VPN hostings, they obviously are not full proof. Review the website of the provider. The landing page should be authentic, with up to date and valid content. Some sites oversell their services. See that they are clear about how their security works, and have no vague terms and conditions.

Look for customer reviews with proper links to social media sites or some form of identification. See that the company offers good customer support. Be wary if undue data information is sought.

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Air Charter Service offers aviation scholarships and student grants

Do you want to start a career in the aviation industry? Then an Air Charter Service (ACS) grant or scholarship could be just the thing to help you realize your dreams. ACS is a global leader in private aviation, organizing over 12,000 private jet charters a year from offices in six continents. To demonstrate its passion for supporting the future of the industry, ACS is now offering you the chance to benefit from aviation scholarships and research grants.

ACS aviation scholarships and research grants


Want to offset university course fees or help fund your research in the aerospace and aviation sector? Then ACS is keen to help financially and provide you with industry contacts to help further your career. The company is looking for aerospace students who are bright, motivated, and innovative to join their scholarship program, here are the details:

  • If you’re conducting ground-breaking research for a reputable scientific journal, then you could win a $5,000 ACS aviation scholarship. Winners will be judged on the caliber of the journal, as well as the potential impact their paper could have on the aviation industry.

If you’re working on a cutting-edge research paper that could change the world of aviation, then you can also apply for one of these student grants:

  • Receive up to $500 to publish your research on the ACS website. Students who apply for this option will get help from experts at ACS and inside information, including statistics, about the private aviation industry to help with their research.
  • Get up to $500 to support your existing research for publication. The grant amount will depend on how innovative and important your study is to the aviation sector.

Who can apply for an aviation grant or scholarship?

If you’re currently enrolled in an engineering or aviation program at a fully-accredited university in the United States, then you’re eligible to apply for a scholarship. Qualifying courses include Professional Pilot programs, Airport or Aviation Management, or Commercial Aviation courses.

Why is Air Charter Service offering financial aid?


ACS has a long history of nurturing aerospace scientists and the next generation of aviation leaders through internship programs. The company was built from the ground up by founder Chris Leach, the son of a pilot whose experience in the aviation industry included working for Saturn Airways. With a focus on personal service, Leach started the company from a basement in 1990 and helped fund his vision by taking in a lodger, university student Justin Bowman.

Bowman, who demonstrated ‘an encyclopaedic knowledge of aircraft’ became an intern at ACS and later became the company’s CEO. Other impressive intern success stories include Lloyd Robinson, who worked his way up from Assistant Trainee Cargo Broker to Business Development Director. Former intern David Lewis, who is now the ACS Search Marketing Executive, says:

“Only a few months into the (intern) placement I knew I wanted to come back and be part of the growth of ACS after I finished my final year. This is a testament to the positive atmosphere and excellent working environment at ACS.”

From its humble beginnings, ACS has become a global leader in the private jet, group, and cargo charter sector. Today, the company arranges everything from luxury private jets for affluent travelers to sending humanitarian aid to countries in need.

How to apply for an aviation grant or scholarship


To apply for an ACS aviation grant or scholarship, simply send the following details to before the deadline of December 31st 2018:

  • Full name
  • Contact details
  • Email address
  • Mobile number
  • The university program you’re enrolled in
  • Your research topic
  • The potential publication website for your research
  • Existing publications you’re researching for.

Please contact Glenn Phillips if you have any questions about ACS grants and scholarships, and apply today to kick-start your career in the aviation industry.

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How software development is changing in 2018

From big business to home users, software development has become the number 1 job in the IT sector. Here are the trends shaking up the industry in 2018.

Blockchain in high demand

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve probably heard about blockchain and the rise of bitcoin and cryptocurrency. But blockchain is not just a passing fad. Nearly every industry is going to revolutionised by blockchain technology, and in 2018 we will begin to see more ventures. We’ve already seen IBM, Amazon and Microsoft begin to introduce their own blockchain platforms, and it’s only a matter of time before more companies hop on the blockchain bandwagon. But what does this mean for the software industry? Being as they’re distributed databases, developing and testing blockchain platforms is no simple task. As more and more businesses move towards using blockchain, the demand for blockchain developers is going to grow. While blockchain applications will help businesses and developers build more efficient processes, implementing this technology will not be without it’s difficulties. Making blockchain something you’ll definitely want to keep an eye on this year.

From custom to cloud

For years, governments and other large enterprises have turned to custom-built software to meet their needs. But there are many cases where the results have been lacklustre, especially considering the cost involved in developing them. Over the last few years we’ve seen a rise in accessible and affordable cloud services, like those offered by Microsoft of Amazon, resulting in the ability to work across state and even national lines, providing a solution that saves considerable resources and time.  Unlike the custom build technology of the past, these platforms are fully built and tested, and their software can easily integrate with existing systems, removing the need to build something from scratch. Most of these cloud-based platforms can be configured, allowing the software to evolve with changing needs. This allows them to offer large enterprises ready-made, consumer efficient technologies catered to their specific needs and driving down the need for custom software development in large enterprises.

IoT takes over

There is no doubt that the Internet of Things (IOT) has created a data explosion. Almost every device we use, from smart phones to smart fridges, collect data about our daily habits. The data gathered by these devices is colossal, and plenty of companies have begun using it to provide better, safer service to consumers and clients.

Experts are predicting that by 2020, there will be more than 30 billion connected devices, generating a whopping $1.7 trillion in potential revenue opportunities. Embracing the shift and successfully managing the complexity that comes with IoT will be one of the biggest challenges for developers, IoT products and services will only ever be as good as the software running them. According to the McKinsey Global Institute, IoT is going to take the guesswork out of development, gathering data about how products function and are used by consumers. This means companies will be less likely to rely on traditional data gathering methods, like customer focus groups. However, IoT products and services will only be as good as the software behind them.  For the software development community, this means working to reduce risks in the software, provide secure architecture and complying with industry standards.

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“Online development courses are helping self development” says David Michigan

Ever since we are born our every action is consciously or subconsciously the result of trying to make our lives better than before. Growing is not just a word associated with physical growth. It has more to do with the mind. Self-growth or self-development is needed not just to solve work-related issues. It goes deeper than that. It helps you become the best version of yourself. Once you reach that stage, it is easier to find peace within and be happy with your present situation.

David Michigan, motivational speaker, online life and fitness coach, and health expert says that it can happen when you awaken your inner self. He has a staggering 4 million followers on social media combining both Facebook and Instagram. A model and an actor in his own right, he has been helping people live better through mind techniques like visualization and hypnosis, all through online training. David believes these techniques help create a more positive mind and body image which further helps in having a better life.

He is known especially for his motivational speeches that he uses to train his followers mentally. Bonding with his followers and understanding their needs have made him stand apart among motivational speeakers. He believes once you awaken your inner self, it will be easier to understand what you want from life and finally make your dreams come true. David has helped the participants have a better mindset at Miss Tattoo France and would take part in Miss Tattoo World as well. His speeches and writings have made it to websites like Forbes, Huffington Post, Men’s Fitness, Buzzfeed etc.

Inculcating a few good habits can also help in personal growth. We all have it in us to be the best, just that we need some grooming by a mentor like David Michigan. Here are a few habits that you can start practising from today.

  • Have a vision or a goal: Without a goal, life can be aimless. However, do not write down that being successful is your goal, instead have a vision in your mind and try to create a path to walk towards it.
  • Create small goals and daily routine: Having a vision is great , but set smaller goals within realistic time period for yourself. Once you achieve them reward yourself too.
  • Take decisions wisely: Being a great decision maker might very well determine your future. So take your decisions wisely. Analyze whether you have been taking the right track so far and if it has helped you come closer to your ultimate goal.
  • Embrace your faults: Embracing your faults or imperfections is part of the deal. Do not get demotivated by them. Instead, accept them. When you know your shortcoming you will understand your options better, and can take better decisions too.

Finally, have fun in the whole process. Do not take life too seriously. Enjoy every moment, take failure as a learning experience, and get up each time.

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