ABL Technology Member News & Industry Trendletter * June 19, 2018

>>>Jeff Broudy is CEO of PCIHIPAA, a leader in HIPAA compliance and patient data protection, delivering Payment Card Industry (PCI) and HIPAA compliance solutions. PCIHIPAA specializes in helping medical and dental practices mitigate risks related to HIPAA requirements and data protection, quickly, easily, and affordably. The company's team of experts is comprised of certified risk advisors, customer success specialists, and HIPAA lawyers. Since 2012, PCIHIPAA's OfficeSafe compliance solution protects thousands of medical and dental practices nationwide. Clients enjoy compliance without burdening their own team; data breach protection in case of patient data breach or regulatory fine; encryption solutions to protect patient information; and savings related to redundant PCI fees and excess credit card processing fees. Prior to becoming CEO of PCIHIPAA in June 2015, Jeff was Intuit's VP of Sales and Marketing for Total Merchant Services, and Director of Sales and Marketing. Jeff has joined the West Los Angeles Round Table.

Beyond Bitcoin: How Blockchain's Making
a Dent in the World
by Mimi Grant

Back in the '80's Steve Jobs famously aspired to put a dent in the universe. Fast-forward to today, and BLOCKCHAIN's encryption methodology is allowing developers to verify the authenticity of each transaction. The result is already changing industries and governments. The latest industry to be changed is publishing. Civil Media Company is a New York-based startup which, according to The New York Times, "aims to use blockchain technology to launch 1,000 publications nationwide by the end of the year." Notably, it was funded by ConsenSys, whose founder is Ethereum's co-founder, Joseph Lubin. . . [Photo Credit: BBVA.com] READ MORE >>>

  • 7/05 - Orange County Round Table
  • 7/06 - Downtown Los Angeles Round Table
  • 7/13 - West Los Angeles Round Table
ABL Members Connect in Chinese Airport

At the Shenzhen Bao'an International Airport recently, Jae Son, CEO of Pressure Profile Systems, ran into Jinghui Li, President of Auxora. As a result, Jae took the opportunity to tour Auxora's optical thin film filter factory in Shenzhen, which he deemed "very impressive." (Pictured below: Jae Son, Ph.D. (left), & Jinghui Li, Ph.D. (right), both Downtown Los Angeles Round Table Members)

Alvaka to Present Workshop on the Importance of Patching

On June 26, Alvaka Networks will host Why Patching Is Your Most Important Security Defense, part of its "Lunch & Learn sessions," from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., in Irvine. Alvaka shares that a recent study found 98.8% of breaches can be stopped by good patching practices. However, many of the practices are inefficient, incomplete, and ultimately risky themselves. This session will discuss steps you can take to greatly minimize risk of loss, as well as software patching best practices.   Also, Alvaka CEO Oli Thordarson recently wrote 3 Things Healthcare Organizations Can Do to Help Protect Them From Cyber Risk and Security Breaches (which is equally valuable for Tech Organizations!) for the ABL Healthcare Online newsletter. (Oli Thordarson, Orange County Healthcare)

Catasys Gets $10M & Launches OnTrak-AN in California

Catasys, Inc. has entered into a $10 million financing comprised of a receivable facility agreement of $2.5 million with Heritage Bank of Commerce and a four-year term loan of up to $7.5 million with Horizon Technology Finance Corporation. Catasys intends to use the proceeds to scale new contracts and expansions, invest in new technology platforms, and provide excess capital. Meanwhile, Catasys has launched its OnTrak program with the second largest health plan in the U.S. meaning it's now contracted with 7 of the top 8 insurers nationwide. Catasys' OnTrak program has initially launched with this plan in California, which brings the number of states in which OnTrak is available to 20. Eligible commercial members in California are now able to take advantage of OnTrak-AN, an integrated 52-week program that identifies, engages, and treats members with untreated or undertreated behavioral health conditions that impact co-morbid medical conditions, such as diabetes, hypertension, coronary artery disease, COPD, and congestive heart failure, resulting in high medical costs. (Rick Anderson, West Los Angeles)

Cornerstone Expands Collaborations with IBM & Grovo

Cornerstone OnDemand and IBM have expanded their strategic relationship so that Cornerstone clients will now have access to IBM's comprehensive talent management consulting services. IBM can now directly engage with Cornerstone clients, giving them access to a pool of global consultants who drive end-to-end talent management offerings.  And, Cornerstone and Grovo have announced the addition of Grovo Create, allowing businesses to further benefit from the combination of Grovo's customizable content library and Cornerstone's content service, providing 3,000+ modern training courses to empower employees with rich, effective learning that integrates into the flow of daily work.  Meanwhile, Cornerstone has been named to Mogul's 2018 list of the "Top 1000 Companies Worldwide for Millennial Women." (Adam Miller, West Los Angeles)

Envision Financial Systems a Finalist for Fintech Award

Envision Financial Systems was named as one of six finalists for the Benzinga Global Fintech 2018 Awards in the Best Trading Execution Platform or Brokerage category, chosen by a panel of judges made up of experts from Google, JP Morgan, Fidelity, and others. Envision was recognized for its FundKeeper platform, launched in 2017 in collaboration with U.S. Bancorp Fund Services, a full-service mutual fund shareholder servicing solution designed the way financial intermediary firms work with mutual fund companies. FundKeeper features an adaptive online portal that provides intermediaries and their clients with real-time access to account and trading information in one place, across multiple fund families without the need for a brokerage account and the associated fees and complexities. (Satnam Gambhir, Orange County)

myKaarma's Ujj Nath Honored with Indian Institute of Tech Award

Ujj Nath, CEO of myKaarma, recently received the Indian Institute of Technology Jury's Special Award for 2018-19, in recognition of his outstanding contributions. As a graduate himself, Ujj is a long-time supporter of the Institute and, among other things, has helped bring Wi-Fi to the Institute dormitories, along with other initiatives that provide support to students. Ujj was unanimously selected to receive the award, presented to him at a special function held in New Delhi in May. (Ujj Nath, West Los Angeles)

PCIHIPAA Launches OfficeSafe Pay

PCIHIPAA, whose OfficeSafe compliance platform helps medical and dental practices comply with stringent regulations, recently expanded its suite of services to include OfficeSafe Pay, to help healthcare professionals maintain payment card industry (PCI) compliance and save money on excessive credit card processing fees.  Also recently, PCIHIPAA released OfficeSafe's Privacy Automation Tool to enable healthcare professionals to easily execute documents required under HIPAA's Privacy Rule.  Meanwhile, the Kentucky Dental Association welcomed PCIHIPAA as a Silver Patron, whereby PCIHIPAA will help protect KDA members from the onslaught of ransomware attacks, HIPAA violations, and data breaches impacting dental practices in Kentucky. (Jeff Broudy, West Los Angeles)

PeopleG2 CEO Wins Award, Writes Articles on Leadership

The Power of Company Culture, a book written by Chris Dyer, CEO of PeopleG2, has won a 2018 Independent Press Award, in the 'Business: General' category. Meanwhile, Chris has recently published several articles in a variety of publications, including: Cultural Sea Change: How to Get Your Staff on Board, in Training Industry; How to Lead a Culture of Listening, in ABA Bank Marketing; Baby Steps or Giant Leaps? Using Culture to Hack Performance, in Businessing; and A Hippie, a Neuroscientist, and Your Favorite Boss Walk into a Bar, in Great Leadership. (Chris Dyer, Downtown Los Angeles)

Sidebench Provides Insight into Company & Community

Recently, @bizrockstars visited Sidebench to shoot a new episode of Officeland with @CBRE - this video gives a peek of Sidebench's workspace and what it's like to work there.  Meanwhile, Sidebench published Embracing the Los Angeles Design Community, in which they spoke with area designers about topics such as accessible technologies, merging creative communities with more traditional social impact entities, and events for accelerating innovation. (Kevin Yamazaki, West Los Angeles)

The Joy Factory Chosen by NHL Team & Salon Franchise

The Joy Factory announced that the Arizona Coyotes, a National Hockey League team, is making tablet computers available at its games to give fans the ability to participate in team giveaways and other activities. To keep the tablets safe and secure, the Coyotes are utilizing The Joy Factory's LockDown Universal C-Clamp Mounts. And another client, Square One Salon and Day Spa, with six locations in Ohio, is utilizing tablets for a variety of purposes, including appointment management, point-of-sale transactions, guest sign-in, reviewing style options, entertainment, promotions, and more. Square One has chosen The Joy Factory's MagConnect mounts to secure the devices. (Sampson Yang, Orange County, & Miranda Su, Downtown Los Angeles)

UGovernIT CEO Announces CIO Certification Program for Women

In partnership with Irvine Technology Corporation, Subbu Murthy, CEO of UGovernIT, has announced a CIO Certification Program, designed to help women who are experienced in technology management to achieve the position of Chief Information Officer. There is no charge for the program, which will start in September 2018. For more information, reach out to smurthy@ugovernit.com. (Subbu Murthy, Orange County)

Water Planet Subsidiary Completes $9 Million Funding Round

PolyCera Membranes, a subsidiary of Water Planet, which develops and markets next-generation membrane technology for industrial wastewater treatment and process separation, has completed a $9 million Series A funding round that will enable the company to make immediate investments to build out its global manufacturing, R&D, and sales capabilities. The round was led by Kairos Ventures with follow-on capital provided by Bluestem Capital and the Wolfen Group, two of PolyCera's existing investors through Water Planet. 
    Meanwhile, MembranePRO Services and Watershed Tech Services have announced expansion plans to double production capacity by year-end at the Wasco Treatment Plant, California's first-of-a-kind merchant facility to treat produced water for reclamation and beneficial reuse. The facility uses artificial intelligence-based IntelliFlux Controls software that maximizes plant performance and improves energy efficiency and overall OpEx, and PolyCera membranes, proven to lower energy costs by as much as 40% and reduce the need for consumables, such as chemicals, by an estimated 19%. (from Water Planet: Erik Hoek, Downtown Los Angeles; from Intelliflux Controls: Subir Bhattacharjee, Ph.D., Orange County)

WorkDone Announces Equity Crowdfund Campaign

WorkDone has launched an equity crowdfund campaign on the truCrowd platform, running from June 6 to July 9, 2018. The company's patent-pending Expertise Capture technology uses advances in machine learning to let organizations and entrepreneurs automate the most boring, repetitive parts of their processes without requiring user training or custom programming. WorkDone's goal is to replace countless hours of low-value busywork at the office with WorkDone's AI agents, which reduces labor costs and frees people up to do higher value work. (Joe Rogers, West Los Angeles)


ChromoLogic's Covisus Debuts Handheld vTag Scanner

Covisus, a ChromoLogic Company, recently launched its new vTag Handheld Scanner, ideal for use by companies in biomedical, aerospace, and consumer industries. A traditional "tag" is any label attached, printed, or fixed to an item that allows it to be tracked. A vTag is a "virtual tag," which functions like a tag but without any modification to the part. Like a human fingerprint or iris scan, a vTag uses intrinsic surface features of an item to uniquely identify it from all other items of its kind. (Naresh Menon, Los Angeles Healthcare)

Maxim Healthcare & Leidos Team on Next-Gen Health Tools

Maxim Healthcare Services and Leidos have partnered to develop a suite of healthcare products that will put actionable information in the hands of caregivers before entering a patient's home. The products, which will be deployed through Maxim's workforce of 65,000+ frontline caregivers, will operate on the Leidos platform and combine structured and unstructured data from a variety of sources to provide a holistic patient view while identifying potential risks or gaps in care. This information will enable Maxim team members to stratify populations, make more informed clinical decisions, and better allocate resources. In addition, the companies plan to implement these services for health plans, large health systems, employers and government payers seeking to better manage post-acute and long-term community-based care services for chronic care and medically fragile populations. The products will also support population health initiatives for Maxim's large existing business serving self-insured employers. (Jarrod DePriest, Sacramento Healthcare)

MYnd Analytics Spotlighted as "Next Big Company" in Money Street

A recent article from The Money Street - The Next Big Company That's Addressing Mental Health Illness and Disorders Head-on - extols MYnd Analytics, presenting a detailed overview of the company's market, proprietary cloud-based platform - PEER Online, their pilot program with Horizon Healthcare Services, acquisition of Arcadian Telepsychiatry Services, and more. "As we conducted our market research on MYnd Analytics, it became clear to us that the mental illness and disorder market is large with compelling growth drivers," the article states. "The market is seeking solutions like what MYnd Analytics has developed that can provide targeted, customized results that are cost-effective." (George Carpenter, Orange County Healthcare)

Dave Berkus on: Celebrations, Morals & Ethics

In Have you been celebrating each victory?, Dave suggests that growing companies give rise to many events that great managers will take advantage of to create and shape the culture of the company itself. Each new plateau in revenue growth, each time a month's orders hit a record, each large order from the sales department, all of these and more give rise to opportunities to celebrate publicly. Everyone in a stressful corporate environment loves to pause and relish the latest victory.  And, in You are your company's moral compass, Dave notes that you will find many times during your management years when decisions are placed before you that require quick unwavering response to an ethical challenge to you or your company. How you comport yourself in these situations is absolutely the litmus test for how your company culture will reflect your actions.  Also, in You are watched, mostly when decisions are tough, Dave acknowledges that a CEO's or manager's life is not simple. But there are lines, both ethical and legal, that just cannot be stepped over, difficult as the result may be. Each of us is tested in subtle and sometimes very public ways often during our careers. (Dave Berkus, Downtown & West Los Angeles)

GetVisible on: Favorite WordPress Plugins

Jason Ciment of GetVisible has shared some of his favorite WordPress plugins: > ABD dashboard allows you to adjust the home page admin screen for Wordpress to make it simply friendly. > Enable media replace replace adds the ability to replace an image rather than deleting it and adding a new revised image instead. > WP Smush makes images load faster. > Since Google hates broken links, use SEO Redirection to easily point bad web pages to the right URLs. > When you can't find a page you want to fix, use Search Everything plugin. (Jason Ciment, West Los Angeles)

Intellect on: Next-Generation eQMS

In Digital Transformation Strategy for Next Generation eQMS, Intellect's Romeo Elias says that a great enterprise quality management software (eQMS) system is defined by five essential elements: process integration, flexibility and extensibility of the system, centralized monitoring and management, compliance enablement, and culture and quality compliance. Romeo also lays out several steps for creating a digital transformation strategy for an eQMS integration. In summary, they include: > Assess your needs, strengths and weaknesses: Lay out a structure and define what quality management aspects you need improving. > Understand different approaches that can be taken: If you are looking for a digital transformation of a specific aspect of a business, typically an eQMS system is placed at the core of the value chain of each business, and most medium-to-high level enterprises implement it as a backbone of their business operations. > Determine gaps in functionalities and invest in IT architecture: This can present a considerable expense; however, if planned out correctly it gives a proportional ROI. (Romeo Elias, West Los Angeles)

Taylor Digital on: Colors, Design & Your Demographics

In Color Psychology and Designing for Your Demographics, Taylor Digital's Randy Taylor discusses the impact of the color of websites and marketing pieces on the brain of the viewer. He suggests that you probably have a pretty good idea of who your current customer base is and explains how to choose colors and design elements that speak to the substance of your business, culture, and products that they already love. But should you reach a point in your growth strategy where you see the need to acquire a whole new set of customers, this will involve developing a customer persona - learn more about these here. This will help inform the design elements, including color choices, that you want to use to attract them. (Randy Taylor, Orange County)

Small Business Owners Remain Optimistic, Though Sleep Deprived

The MetLife & U.S. Chamber of Commerce Small Business Index survey found that for two-thirds of small business owners, the current environment in the U.S. is positive and optimistic. This is being driven by a strong economy, record low unemployment, and lending institutions loosening up their purse strings to more borrowers. The survey also found that respondents slept 6.7 hours a night on average. (Read Article: Small Business Trends, 6/3/18)

Ties Between Tech and Media Get Tighter

AT&T won the right to complete its $85 billion takeover of Time Warner, which includes various media properties such as DC Entertainment and HBO, after US District Judge Richard Leon declined the Justice Department's request to block the deal. Leon also didn't impose any conditions on the deal, giving AT&T and Time Warner what amounts to a total victory in the case. The merger, which combines one of the largest communications network providers with a major player in the entertainment market, is poised to shake up the media world. The trial was closely watched, as the fate of the deal is expected to have ripple effects on future deals and on everyone from media giants to streaming-service providers. (Read Article: CNET, 6/12/18)   CNBC notes that industry leaders like Apple, Amazon, Netflix, and Disney share some of their more notable directors - indicating a like-mindedness of the sectors' top executives. (Read Article: CNBC, 6/13/18)
     Meanwhile, Internet service provider Comcast says it no longer needs to throttle speeds for heavy internet users, ending a network-management technique it's been using since 2008. Comcast said improvements to its networks and more modern browsers now mean it doesn't face the same congestion problems (Read Article: ZDNet, 6/14/18), and it's offering $65 billion in cash for much of 21st Century Fox, a 19% premium over the December offer from Walt Disney Co., which Fox Chairman Rupert Murdoch had already accepted. (Read Article: New York Times, 6/13/18)

Verizon's CTO Becomes CEO; & Nearly Half of U.S. Consumers Will Have Access to 5G by 2023

Verizon Communications named its executive VP and CTO, Hans Vestberg, as its new CEO, taking effect August 1. The shift in executive leadership is signaling Verizon's intentions to build a 5G wireless network instead of exploring media content, reports Reuters. The announcement highlighted Vestberg's "willingness to disrupt established processes." (Read Articles: CIO Dive, 6/11, & Reuters, 6/8/18)
     Meanwhile, the U.S. is expected to lead 5G deployments, with all major operators in the country planning a 5G rollout between late 2018 and mid-2019, according to Ericsson. By the end of 2023, Ericsson predicts that almost 50% of all U.S. mobile subscriptions will be based on the new standard. (Read Article: ZDNet, 6/12/18)   Also, Sprint, Acer, and Asus all recently announced they will offer 5G PCs, powered by Intel chips, next year – joining Microsoft, Dell, HP, and Lenovo. (Read Article: The Verge, 6/5/18)

Demand for Augmented & Virtual Reality Expected to Soar in 2018

Worldwide spending on AR and VR products and services will reach $27 billion in 2018, a 92% increase year over year, according to International Data Corp. Spending on these technologies and services should achieve a five-year compound annual growth rate of 72% over the 2017 to 2022 forecast period. (Read Article: ZDNet, 5/31/18)
     Meanwhile, AR and VR are enabling theme park designers to explore the idea of bringing consumer video game experiences from home into immersive shared attractions found at theme parks. Gamers care about the identities they create in games and bringing those into an amusement park visit would be a win for both industries. (Read Article: Venture Beat, 6/9/18)

Blockchain to Revamp Industries, with Cost Savings & Extra Security

"Every bank in the world is testing some sort of blockchain or similar technology," said Pete Woodard, CEO of IBC Group, a global ICO consulting and blockchain development company. Darryn Jones, VP of business development at the Greater Phoenix Economic Council, said there are four factors making blockchain a potential disruption to the financial industry. In summary, they include faster clearing and settlement of transactions, transparency, security, and cost savings. (Read Article: ZDNet, 6/1/18)
     Meanwhile, ZDNET's article - The blockchain explained for non-engineers - reports that "evangelists" claim that blockchain tech will disrupt industrial supply chains, streamline real estate transactions, and redefine the media industry. But while the technology's applications seem nearly limitless, understanding how the blockchain works and why it's important is challenging, even for technology and IT professionals. The blockchain is, fundamentally, an ever-expanding database, which relies on a novel method of encryption, allowing developers to verify the authenticity of each transaction. (Read Article: ZDNet, 6/1/18)

Meanwhile, Apple Bans Cryptocurrency Mining Apps

Apple has banned developers from submitting cryptocurrency mining apps designed for the iPhone or iPad. In an update to Apple's developer policies, the tech giant has now stipulated that any app containing "background processes" which are unrelated to the app - such as cryptocurrency mining - are now specifically banned. "Design your app to use power efficiently," the updated policy states. "Apps should not rapidly drain battery, generate excessive heat, or put unnecessary strain on device resources. Apps, including any third-party advertisements displayed within them, may not run unrelated background processes, such as cryptocurrency mining." (Read Article: ZDNet, 6/12/18)

Google Promises its AI Will Not Be Used for Weapons

Facing employee rebellion over work with the Pentagon, Google said that it would not use AI for weapons or for surveillance that violates human rights. In a company blog post, CEOSundar Pichai laid out seven objectives for its AI technology, including "avoid creating or reinforcing unfair bias" and "be socially beneficial." Google said it would continue to work with governments and military using AI in areas including cybersecurity, training, and military recruitment. (Read Article: New York Times, 6/7/18)

Tesla to Cut 9% of Jobs in "Difficult but Necessary" Reorganization

Tesla told employees last week that it will cut about 9% of its workforce, trimming mostly salaried positions. Since the start of the year, Tesla has added roughly 8,000 jobs and currently employs approximately 46,000 workers. Through this reorganization, it will shed about 4,100 jobs. (Read Article: CNBC, 6/12/18)
     Meanwhile, Tesla CEO Elon Musk and his company, The Boring Company, recently held a community information event to detail plans on how it hopes to solve traffic woes in Los Angeles, including using all-electric pods which would travel through tunnels across the city. (Read Article: socaltech, 5/18/18)

Best Buy Turns Around to Compete with Amazon

Best Buy was able to turn around sales for its locations while reporting a 2% year-over-year increase in after-tax operating profit, the company reported. The brand chose to focus on differentiation through customer service and restructuring its business, which allowed it to compete with retail powerhouse Amazon. (Read Article: Forbes, 6/7/18)

U.S. Is Again Home to World's Speediest Supercomputer; While Microsoft Sinks Data Center in the Scottish Sea

The U.S. just won bragging rights in the race to build the world's speediest supercomputer. For five years, China had the world's fastest computer, but the U.S. retook the lead thanks to a machine, called Summit, built for the Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee. Summit can do mathematical calculations at the rate of 200 quadrillion per second, or 200 petaflops - to put that in human terms, a person doing one calculation a second would have to live for 6.3+ billion years to match what the machine can do in a second. China still has the world's most supercomputers over all. And China, Japan and Europe are developing machines that are even faster, which could mean the American lead is short-lived. Supercomputers like Summit, which cost $200 million in government money to build, can accelerate the development of technologies at the frontier of computing, like artificial intelligence and the ability to handle vast amounts of data. (Read Article: New York Times, 6/8/18)
     Meanwhile, Microsoft has placed a data center in the Scottish sea to determine whether it can save energy by cooling it in the ocean. Data centers typically generate a lot of heat, and big providers try to move them to cooler countries to save on energy bills. Microsoft has been experimenting with subsea data centers for five years, and in 2015 sunk a center off the California coast for five months. This latest underwater data center will be deployed for five years, and includes 12 racks with 864 servers and 27.6 petabytes of storage. It will be powered by an undersea cable and renewable energy from the Orkney Islands. The cable will also connect the servers back to the internet. Microsoft hopes the research project will surface design and operational issues to inform whether it can make this a reality for more data centers around the world. (Read Article: The Verge, 6/6/18)

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