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posticon Tech Review: Wyze Cams

Business | Friday, July 12, 2019 | By Dan Veaner Print
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Wyze Cam displays on an Echo SpotWyze Cam displays on an Echo Spot

You're lying in bed when you hear a loud noise outside.  What do you do?

A) Run frantically to the front door, barefoot in your pajamas
B) Pull the covers up over your head and make believe you didn't hear anything
C) Say, "Alexa show driveway camera" and look at the screen on your alarm clock.

I recently tried choice C for the first time, and I have to say that sometimes technology does make our lives better.  As gadgets have become ubiquitous they have been learning to talk to one another.  Amazon is a leader in this trend.  The Amazon digital assistant Alexa passed 80,000 skills in January.  In the Alexa universe skills are the connection between you talking to Alexa and some other device or action.  For example you can ask Alexa to find your robotic vacuum cleaner.  Or to turn on the lights in the family room.  Or to show you the live feed from your security camera.  But not all skills are as skillful as others.  You want devices that offer skills that connect to Alexa reliably and have a good range of actual skills enabled by the Alexa 'skill'.  Inexpensive is good (also rare).

All that led me to try Wyze cameras, both the stationary Wyze Cam and the Wyze Cam Pan, which can view a 360 degree radius.

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posticon Fund Will Allocate Percentage of Film Tax Credits for Diversity Job Training

Business | Friday, July 12, 2019 | By New York State Governor's Office Print
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theaterGovernor Andrew M. Cuomo announced yesterday the first-in-the-nation Empire State Entertainment Diversity Job Training Development Fund. Productions participating in the New York State Film Production and Post-Production Tax Credit Programs will see a small reduction in their tax credits that will be diverted into a fund for job training and workforce development across the entertainment industry. The fund was passed as part of an end-of-session comprehensive capital spending bill and will initially provide $1.05 million per year.

"New York's strength is in its diversity, and we are always looking for ways to enhance it," Cuomo said. "This first-in-the-nation program will provide new resources to propel us toward becoming the most inclusive entertainment industry in the country, while continuing to produce amazing film and TV productions."

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posticon State Budget Financial And Capital Plans Analysis Released

Business | Friday, July 12, 2019 | By New York State Comptroller's Office Print
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The state's fiscal year (SFY) 2019-20 Enacted Budget Financial Plan projects healthy growth in tax receipts and federal aid for the current fiscal year, but raises concerns about long-term balance, increasing debt and the impacts of federal policies, according to a report released today by State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli. The $177 billion spending plan for SFY 2019-20 is up $6.2 billion from SFY 2018-19.

"While New York's economy continues to expand, gains in jobs, personal income and wages are projected to slow," DiNapoli said. "The Enacted Budget plan addresses risks such as downturns in tax receipts and federal aid, but other, more unpredictable impacts on state revenues may require more action. While rainy day funds were increased, building more robust reserves should be a top priority."

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