High-Tech Self Control

Technology fosters communication and makes professionals more efficient at their jobs, but at times it harbors procrastination. Fear not -- help is on the way. Here are innovative ways that technology is helping users become more self-sufficient.

  • Swedish automaker Saab developed Alcokey, a small device that takes users' breath alcohol samples. According to Saab's Web site, if a driver's blood alcohol content exceeds the legal limit, a radio transmitter signals the car's electronic unit, which immobilizes the car.
  • Americans are obsessed with checking their e-mail. A whopping 59 percent of respondents of AOL's Fourth Annual Email Addiction Survey said they checked their e-mail in the bathroom. However, if you have a Gmail account, you can put yourself on time out. Google's Email Addict lets users lock themselves out of their mailboxes for 15-minute increments. By Karen Stewartson, Managing Editor

 

Feeling Safer?

According to the 2008 Global State of Information Security survey, conducted by PricewaterhouseCoopers, agencies made significant improvement to protect constituents' personal identifiable information. Here's how agencies compared in the last two years:

Web-Related Capabilities                                                  2008           2007

Using content filters                                                       74 percent   59 percent

Securing Web transactions                                              67 percent   48 percent

Implementing Web site accreditation and certification 61 percent 51 percent

 

Social Club

According to a survey of more than 500 IT professionals, social networking is becoming more prevalent in the workplace. Nearly 79 percent of respondents using Facebook, LinkedIn or YouTube at work for business reasons. The most common work-related tasks: professional networking (54 percent), research (52 percent) and learning about colleagues (52 percent). -- www.nytimes.com

 

CIO Connection

A recent survey of 1,400 U.S. CIOs conducted by Robert Half Technology shows that 57 percent of CIOs feel more connected with their colleagues due to the prevalence of technology. When asked their preferred way for IT staff to communicate with one another in the office, here's how they responded:

E-mail: 43%

In-person conversations: 36%

Phone: 10%

Instant messaging: 4%

Text messaging: 2%

Don't know/no answer: 5%

 

Grappling With the Economy

The National Conference of State Legislatures released its annual forecast of the top nine policy issues that are pressing on state legislative agendas as budgets tighten. The results are as follows:

1 State Budget Gaps

2 Transportation and Infrastructure

3 Higher Education Affordability

4 Health Costs and Reform

5 Clean Energy and Alternatives

6 Sentencing and Corrections

7 Home Ownership

8 Working Families

9 Unemployment

Karen Stewartson, Managing Editor Karen Stewartson  |  Managing Editor

Karen Stewartson is the managing editor of Government Technology. She contributes to Public CIO journal and Emergency Management magazine. Karen is a lifelong learner who has a penchant for words, puns, food and babies.