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Saturday, December 29, 2012

'Twas a very mobile Christmas

Android and iOS devices were apparently popular gifts this Christmas -- more popular than ever before. Device activations soared from their daily December average of 4 million to 17.4 million on Christmas Day, a 332 percent increase, according to analytics firm Flurry. That's more than double the 6.8 million devices activated on Christmas last year, the previous single-day record holder. And in a first, more tablets were activated on Christmas this year than phones. Apple tablets dominated the category, but the Kindle Fire HD 7-inch made its strongest showing ever. http://news.cnet.com/8301-1001_3-57561138-92/twas-a-very-mobile-christmas-week-in-review/?tag=nl.e496&s_cid=e496

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Taxpayers Face Fiscal Cliff unless Washington Agrees on Deal

RIVERWOODS, ILL. (DECEMBER 27, 2012) BY MICHAEL COHN Congress is scheduled to return Thursday, with one of its top priorities a deal to avert the December 31 “fiscal cliff” deadline of looming tax increases and automatic spending cuts, but it will need to work quickly or reach some type of interim agreement. http://www.accountingtoday.com/news/Taxpayers-Face-Fiscal-Cliff-Washington-Agrees-Deal-65166-1.html?ET=webcpa:e6488:70848a:&st=email

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Eight shocking quotes in 2012

When is the last time you heard a statement that caused you to stop dead in your tracks? It doesn’t happen very often, but for each of us, there are a few unusual sound bites that will permeate our senses and sway our thinking. On these rare occasions, it’s usually a statement by someone we trust, with the power, authority, and credibility to make such a declaration. However, inside all of the statements the world finds important are the crème de la crème, the Richter scale shifting assertions that really stand out. These are statements so insightful and memorable that they have the power to change the course of history. For this reason, I wanted to focus on eight shocking statements made in 2012, and discuss briefly how they will invariably shift our outlook on the future. Here are the eight statements we’ve judged to be trend-setters for 2013 and beyond. http://www.wfs.org/blogs/thomas-frey/eight-shocking-quotes-2012-will-redefine-our-future

IBM reveals five innovations that will change our lives within five years

The era of cognitive systems: when computers will, in their own way, see, smell, touch, taste and hear December 18, 2012 IBM announced today the seventh annual “IBM 5 in 5” — a list of innovations that have the potential to change the way people work, live and interact during the next five years, based on market and societal trends as well as emerging technologies from IBM’s R&D labs. This one is focused on cognitive systems. http://www.kurzweilai.net/ibm-reveals-five-innovations-that-will-change-our-lives-within-five-years?utm_source=KurzweilAI+Daily+Newsletter&utm_campaign=7d2262bcd9-UA-946742-1&utm_medium=email

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Ray Kurzweil now works for Google

SAN FRANCISCO, Dec 15 – Futurist and inventor Raymond Kurzweil said on Friday that he is going to work as director of engineering at Google to help “turn the next decade’s ‘unrealistic’ visions into reality.” Kurzweil, an author whose books include “The Age of Spiritual Machines” and “Fantastic Voyage: Live Long Enough to Live Forever,” said that Monday would be his first day on the job at Google.

Friday, December 14, 2012

The Internet Will Stay Free from Government Control with UN Treaty Blocked

Good news for proponents of an open internet today as a proposed global telecom treaty was blocked by the US, Canada, Africa and Europe. The treaty would have allowed national governments to have control over the internet and monitor everything from its architecture to traffic flow to security. http://www.forbes.com/sites/insertcoin/2012/12/14/the-internet-will-stay-free-from-government-control-with-un-treaty-blocked/

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Are CPAs Innovative Technologists?

A recent AICPA survey reflects that 40% of CPAs consider themselves a technology resource for their clients. I tend to agree with the linked Accounting Today article that wonders what planet they are from. Even though I am presently sitting in a room of around 400 CPAs attending a Technology Conference it doesn't appear that 40% of these CPAs are personally technology savvy. Most do seem to have some type of smartphone and have enough interest to both pay the fee and spend the time to learn some things. However many of their clients are ahead of them in implementing useful technologies. To the extent that my anecdotal observations are correct, it casts dispersion upon the validity of survey results. http://www.accountingtoday.com/acto_blog/jody-padar-cpas-push-innovation-64948-1.html?ET=webcpa:e6424:85046a:&st=email

Thursday, December 06, 2012

US Household Balance Sheets Improve

Flaws in Federal Government Accounting

From Knowledge at Wharton; December 5, 2012: Flaws in the way the government accounts for its loans and credit guarantees understate the costs that taxpayers are bearing with student loans and other credit programs totaling more than $2.5 trillion, plus more than $5 trillion in mortgages backed by the federally owned companies Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. In fact, a proper accounting -- like that required of most businesses -- would make the government's budget deficit even larger than the officially reported amount. http://knowledge.wharton.upenn.edu/article.cfm?articleid=3126

Wednesday, December 05, 2012

NATIONAL EMPLOYMENT (ADP)

National Employment Trends The ADP National Employment Report® is published monthly by the ADP Research InstituteSM in close collaboration with Moody’s Analytics and its experienced team of labor market researchers. The ADP National Employment Report provides a monthly snapshot of U.S. nonfarm private sector employment based on actual transactional payroll data. November 2012 ADP National Employment Report® U.S. Economy Added 118,000 Private-Sector Jobs in November, According to ADP National Employment Report. November 2012 ADP Small Business Report® Small Businesses Created 19,000 Jobs in November, According to National Employment Report.

Mortgage Interest Deductions in 2010

Source: Internal Revenue Service Frank Pompa and Janet Loehrke, USA TODAY

Tuesday, December 04, 2012

Percentages of Individual Income Tax Through 2010

Retired economist, Scott Grannis, has put the Tax Foundation summary of recently released IRS data into this chart:
And, an Income Shares chart by Scott: