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Opinions on smart cars

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In 2022, it’s just a Subaru. Or a Dodge. Or just about any moderately selected new model from the last two years.  Automakers are rushing to introduce new and exciting technology, to make Smart Cars, which means we’re also seeing a lot of new features that are either unnecessary or at best lighthearted. 

These days, walk to your car and it recognizes your keys and unlocks the door. This can also adjust the seat to your preferred position; connect wirelessly to your phone; or change the interior accent lights to the yellow, green, or purple you chose. However, last time,  Mardi Gras was fixed and never updated. Also, it asks if you want to play Centipede or maybe order a pizza. 

These are significant improvements to the automotive experience, and if this were 1982 or, even 2012 (pre-Apple CarPlay days), this hypothetical car would be an incredible feat of technology. 

Everyone thinks of “connected” and “smart” cars, so why are so many benefits of those shiny, sensor-laden,  computer-heavy smart cars? Well, is it real? Or is it stupid? 

I’m not against stupid. Puddle lights spell out the car’s name when you open the door. The glamour. Although they are less useful for finding the house key you just dropped. The infotainment system offers natural sound, and the radio can change the volume with just a swipe of a magic hand. 

But while product managers are busy copying each other’s ideas for small LED light shows, there are still some automotive downsides that we’ve barely mentioned since the Curved Dash. Olds. 

Since I want to help, here are a few places I think smart car technology can help improve the driving experience in the long run. If you want a light show, let’s talk shade. The sun is the enemy of the traveler since the first must go west in the afternoon. 

And yet, the biggest improvement I’ve seen in sun protection is the addition of a small flap that extends to the rear half of the side windows. Sometimes there are mirrors, there are mirrors with lights. It’s good, but the sun is still in my eyes. Some car manufacturers use electrochromic technology on their glass roofs to change from transparent to translucent. 

Can’t we do the same on windows? There are color rules, but what if the windshield could follow the hot spot and just darken? What if all the windows were darkened while the car was parked to keep the interior cool? Sunglasses can automatically darken. Would the auto industry comfortably be overtaken by a $200 pair of Ray-Bans?

I’m not done dealing with visibility complaints. Mirrors should adjust to the driver’s eye level. Cadillac already tracks your face to make sure you’re paying full attention when using Super Cruise, and Subaru uses facial recognition to adjust the seats and mirrors to preset positions. 

If we step further, that is to say, if we adapt technology to help you ensure the position where you are and offer an automatical-calculation service for the greatest settings of rearview as well as side mirrors, can we gain a better future? If so, why not we have a try?  Speaking of facial recognition, the new Genesis GV60 unlocks with the face-level camera and boots through the fingerprint sensor. 

Biometrics are already used, mostly to sell us things, but if our cars are following us, can they at least be better friends than tattletale? Maybe warn us when we’re too sleepy to drive, flag low blood sugar and direct us to the nearest Wendy’s, or notice when we’re crying and playing something sad. I recommend using Joni Mitchell’s blue to match the light. Engineers, if you’re reading this, I have plenty of other suggestions:  nap airbags, phone coolers, and self-cleaning steering wheels. 

If you have any different ideas, leave your comments below. We are glad to exchange opinions with you.

Business

Why do Businesses Need Human resource Consulting Services?

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Human resource

Human resource consulting firms play a vital role in today’s business landscape. They offer several key benefits and importance to organizations:

Expertise and Specialization:

HR consultants bring specialized knowledge and expertise to the table. They stay up-to-date with the latest HR trends, best practices, and legal regulations. This expertise is precious for businesses without dedicated HR staff or require support in complex HR areas.

Cost-Effective Solutions:

Engaging HR consultants can often be more cost-effective than hiring and maintaining an in-house HR department. Businesses can access high-quality HR services as needed, reducing fixed labor costs.

Customization:

HR consultants tailor their services to meet the specific needs of each client. Whether recruitment, employee training, or policy development, consultants design solutions that align with the organization’s unique goals and challenges.

Objective Perspective:

Consultants offer an objective and impartial perspective on HR matters. They can provide insights and recommendations without being influenced by internal biases or politics, which can be valuable for making difficult HR decisions.

Efficiency and Productivity:

HR consultants can streamline HR processes, making them more efficient. This can improve productivity, as employees spend less time on administrative tasks and more on strategic activities.

Compliance and Risk Management:

HR consultants help organizations comply with labor laws and regulations, reducing the risk of legal issues, fines, and reputational damage. They also assist in implementing best practices for risk management.

Strategic Focus:

Organizations can free up their internal resources by outsourcing HR tasks to consultants to focus on core business activities and strategic initiatives. This can lead to improved business performance and growth.

Scalability:

HR consulting firms can adapt to an organization’s changing needs. Whether a business is expanding, downsizing, or facing other transitions, consultants can provide flexible HR solutions to support these changes.

Access to Technology:

Many HR consulting firms have access to advanced HR technology and software solutions that may be cost-prohibitive for smaller organizations to implement independently. This technology can enhance HR processes and data management.

Talent Acquisition and Development:

HR consultants excel in talent acquisition and development. They can help organizations attract top talent, assess employee potential, and implement training and development programs to improve workforce skills.

Confidentiality:

HR consultants are bound by confidentiality agreements, ensuring that sensitive HR issues and employee data are handled with discretion and professionalism.

Conflict Resolution:

Consultants can mediate and assist in resolving workplace conflicts and issues, promoting a harmonious work environment.

Global Expertise:

 For businesses with international operations, HR consultants with global expertise can help navigate the complexities of international HR regulations and practices.

In summary, human resources consulting firms provide valuable support to organizations by offering expertise, cost-effective solutions, and a strategic approach to managing their workforce.

Their ability to adapt to changing needs, ensure compliance, and improve HR processes makes them an essential resource for businesses looking to thrive in today’s competitive environment.

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Business

PayPal quietly reintroduces $2,500 “misinformation” fine

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PayPal

Not long after issuing an apology and retracting a $2,500 fine to its users, PayPal has quietly re-introduced the fine into their terms of service and legal agreements.

If enforced, the leading payment processor could fine users the hefty $2,500 sum for spreading “misinformation,” or “hate”, or whatever they deem “unfit for publication.”

While the wording has been changed up, the company has listed several things they would consider fining users over, purely based on speech:

PayPal restricted and prohibited activities

  • The promotion of hate, violence, racial or other forms of intolerance that is discriminatory or the financial exploitation of a crime
  • Items that are considered obscene
  • Certain sexually oriented materials or services
  • Act in a manner that is defamatory, trade libelous, threatening or harassing
  • Provide false, inaccurate or misleading information

The original documents, which PayPal said were published in error, had much looser language on what would get users fined $2,500 over – namely the “sending, posting, or publication” of any “messages, content, or materials” that are “harmful, obscene, harassing, or objectionable.”

PayPal has seemingly taken a firm stance against adult / pornographic content in both policies, while the former prohibited things that “depict or appear to depict nudity, sexual or other intimate activities” the new policy vaguely prohibits “certain sexually oriented materials or services.”

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Finance

Employee Retention Tax Credit 2022

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The employee retention tax credit 2022 (ERC) is a tax credit available to employers who keep and retain their employees. The credit is available to employers with 100 or fewer full-time employees. It applies to qualifying wages paid to employees during the business’s first quarter.

If your business is a small business, you can use Form 941-X to claim the credit retroactively.

Employers with 100 or fewer full-time employees

Employers with 100 or fewer employees are eligible to claim a refundable payroll tax credit called the Employee Retention Tax Credit.

This credit was created by Congress under the CARES Act to encourage employers to retain employees. It was originally set to expire on January 1, 2022, but Congress has extended the credit twice. This means that eligible employers can still claim the credit for their taxes for 2020 and 2021.

The credit is limited to wages paid between March 12 and Sept. 30, 2021. In addition, wages paid under the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) cannot qualify for the credit. The credit amount is limited to $5,000 per full-time employee in 2020. In 2021, it increases to $7,000 per quarter, with a total credit of up to $21,000 per employee.

Paycheck Protection Program loans are not eligible for the employee retention tax credit

The Employee Retention Credit (ERC) is a tax break for businesses that offer a payroll protection program for their employees. Until recently, employers could not qualify for both programs at the same time. But the new legislation has changed this and now businesses can take advantage of both programs.

To receive the credit, employers must file a Form 941-X, or Adjusted Employer’s Quarterly Federal Tax Return, for each quarter that an employee was a PPP borrower.

The credit is based on wages paid between March 13 and Dec. 31, 2020. For the third quarter of each year, the credit is available for up to $10,000 per employee.

Qualified wages are based on the quarter the business began

To qualify as a severely distressed employer, your business must have had a 90% decline in gross receipts in the previous year.

You must have employed at least one person during this time. The CARES Act does not apply to businesses that are still operating, but it does apply to those that have ceased operations and declined in gross receipts.

Form 941-X is used to retroactively file

The IRS has recently released a new form called Form 941-X. The new form is designed to be filed retroactively and corrects any mistakes that you may have made in filing your original Form 941.

The form must be filed no later than two years after you paid the tax. To file this form, you will need to mail it to the IRS. The IRS does not have the capability to accept it online. If you’ve made significant changes to your business, you may be eligible to claim the ERC. The ERC is equal to 6.4% of the wages you paid to employees during the credit generating period. This credit is not available to corporations with more than 500 employees

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