Trending November 2023 # Questrom Sustainability Competition, With $50,000 Prize, Draws 62 Student Teams From 12 Schools # Suggested December 2023 # Top 12 Popular

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Questrom Sustainability Contest, with $50,000 Prize, Draws Student Teams from across Massachusetts And the award goes too…

BU students who made it to the finals of a Questrom sustainability competition: Ryan Loughran (Questrom’24) (from left), Rachel Levine (Questrom’24), James Coyle (CAS’24), Rachel Koh (Questrom’24), and Noah Sorin (Questrom’24). Photo by Jean Hangarter/David Fox Photography

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Questrom Sustainability Competition, with $50,000 Prize, Draws 62 Student Teams from 12 Schools And the award goes to…

The five BU student teammates slept fitfully the night before, as $50,000 in prize money was riding on their answer to one question: can you make “Allston Christmas” merrier for universities, residents, and the environment?

For those who haven’t navigated through it, Allston Christmas is the run-up to every September 1, when off-campus students vacating apartments overflow neighborhood sidewalks with abandoned furniture and household items—a veritable free bazaar for passers-by, but a burden on landfills, traffic, and garbage pickup costs for unclaimed items. With BU adopting a Zero Waste Plan and partnering with Casella Waste Systems, and with Massachusetts weighing mandatory recycling of usable furniture, what reuse-and-recycle programs would best clear the public way?

The challenge capped a semester-long competition, geared toward environmental sustainability, that drew 62 teams from a dozen universities across Massachusetts and the University of Connecticut. Schools fielded multiple teams, but just three, including one from BU, survived to the November 5 finals, where the Terriers presented their plans to officials from Casella judging the contest.

Rachel Koh (Questrom’24) said her team surveyed 90 Boston-area students and “42 percent of respondents found that sorting trash from recycling is difficult and time-consuming.” Ryan Loughran (Questrom’24) cited other universities that decreased waste by deploying more recycling bins and clearer signage about what can be recycled, and by matchmaking student donors of unwanted furniture with nonprofits. James Coyle (CAS’24), noting that “96 percent [of students] don’t recycle due to a lack of knowledge or care,” suggested mandatory sustainability orientation and more campus sustainability groups and events. Rachel Levine (Questrom’24) recommended Stanford’s approach of awarding money to students who document sustainable lifestyle habits.

The BU team’s proposals weren’t enough to crown them the victor; that honor and the $50,000 went to Suffolk University. But Casella, impressed with the finalists’ ideas, pledged to be in touch with all three.

The eye-popping purse was the second largest in the country for such “case competitions” involving real-life business challenges, said competition coordinator Greg Stoller, a Questrom senior lecturer in strategy and innovation. The prize was donated by Mikhail Gurevich (ENG’07, Questrom’12), managing partner of investment firm Dominion Capital, who’s a sustainability enthusiast who has endowed four more years’ worth of such contests at his alma mater. The Suffolk team will actually split $45,000, as Gurevich required that the victors donate $5,000 to a sustainability organization of their choice.

He has seen evidence of environmental degradation while pursuing another passion: mountain climbing. “You realize there’s something going on, [creating] a lot more awareness that you want to leave this a better place,” he said in remarks at Saturday’s event.

Welcoming attendees, including Gurevich and nine other sustainability experts who judged the semifinals before the final showdown, Susan Fournier, Questrom’s Allen Questrom Professor and Dean, said the competition aspired “to create actionable solutions for pressing sustainability challenges facing our communities and our world.

Though they fell short, the BU students knew they’d made a good presentation at last Saturday’s competition for sustainability ideas from a dozen New England schools. Photo by Jean Hangarter/David Fox Photography

“Another guiding principle that drove us is that business has the ability to serve as a powerful conduit for creating impactful and meaningful change.”

While Noah Sorin (Questrom’24), the fifth BU teammate, conceded that 50 grand was “certainly an influence in our motivation to compete,” a man who waxes passionate about black fly larvae and composting clearly wasn’t in it for money alone.

Sustainability matters to Sorin, who recalled how his team researched insects in the contest’s first round last month, which asked contestants for cost-effective compliance strategies for Boston’s limits on organic material waste. Despite losing the finals, Sorin said, helping Greater Boston with sustainability is “a thrill for all of us.” 

Koh agreed that knowing their months of hard work were not in vain was reward itself: “Combing through all of these different data sources, through all of these websites, pulling together that research, and then being able to make a recommendation that might actually make a difference in the Boston area where we live—I think it’s huge.”

The unusually large prize wasn’t the competition’s only idiosyncrasy: eligibility was wide open to business and nonbusiness students, and graduates and undergraduates. And to ensure against bias, Stoller kept the teams’ identities and schools under wraps throughout the semester.

“I’ve done enough of these case competitions,” he said, “that when a team makes the final, the first thing the judges do—and I say please don’t do this, but they never listen to me—they go to LinkedIn and they start figuring out who’s competing and what schools they are coming from, which completely defeats the purpose.”

The judges’ final deliberations were livestreamed and recorded, with pedagogical purpose. Other contests cloister the judges, “almost like a jury is going to deliberate for a criminal trial,” Stoller said. Competitors “might be lucky enough to get a couple of sentences after the fact of what you did well and what you didn’t do well. But you really don’t understand what goes into it.” In contrast, he said, Questrom’s finalists were able “to see what they did well and what they didn’t do well in real time.” 

The contest “pushed us to think outside the box,” said part-time MBA student Adam Tellier (Questrom’24), a member of another BU team, one that competed in the first round. “We had to think, is this an original idea that no one else is going to have? And that was really the challenging part—how do we develop an idea that is easily adoptable [but] doesn’t drain the funds, and is also something that other people wouldn’t think to do.”

Andrew Ericksen (Questrom’24), also a first-round competitor, participated, he said, “because I am very interested in sustainable business practices and overall sustainability, in all facets of everyday life. I wanted to have an opportunity to both learn more about current sustainability issues and to propose some sustainable solutions to issues.”

For Stoller, who said he’d sent and received 3,756 emails about the contest during the course of the semester, the competition enabled him to check one box on his life’s bucket list. 

“I’ve never handed out a check for $50,000,” he said.

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What You Could Expect From Iphone 12?

What You Could Expect From iPhone 12? iPhone 11 – What’s In It For Average Buyers? Recapitulating iPhone 11

Before delving right into iPhone 12, let’s have a quick recap of what you can expect from iPhone 11. Apple’s latest entrant sure offers more than its predecessors. Whether you take its water and shatter-resistant design or the capability to provide reverse wireless charging, there is so much that iPhone 11 promises.

Beneath the hood of iPhone 11, lies an immensely powerful processor backed by A13 bionic chip. But apart from that iPhone 11 shall have the same design – same notch, same body, same sensors, and same glass.Though on the camera front, there are things to entice new buyers. Say, for instance, three rear cameras, where the third camera will come with an ultra-wide lens (although these specs are reported to appear in the higher-end versions of iPhone 11).

The year 2023 – When iPhone Will Shine Even Brighter With Better Specs 5G Is On Its Way

5G as of now is at its nascent stage and only a few cities worldwide have this next-generation connectivity. By the time 5G components will have hit iPhone 12, it’ll have widespread coverage, in fact, better than many Android’s premium phones.

Screen Technology, Size, and Notch

Talking about the design of iPhone 12, it’ll for sure be a complete revamp. Now, there are several speculations and forecasts and out of these ones is that there would be three iPhone models of sizes 5.4 inches, 6.1 inches, and 6.7 inches. There are even speculations that Apple might just forego the notch this time. Although, it might be difficult to say if Apple would let go of the notch in 2023 or 2023.

Time-Of-Flight Sensor and Touch ID

The iPhone 2023 is reported to have a time-of-flight (ToF) sensor which will be able to judge distances even better. For an avid photographer, this will be a boon as with a ToF one could perform some magnificent depth-of-field tricks and even capture better bokeh blur effects especially on portrait shots.

Also, the ToF sensor shall be able to capture depths in large areas. This would further enhance the augmented reality capabilities of the phone as well. With iPhone 12, AR apps will perform even better.

With iPhone 12, Apple might bring the Touch ID back and in fact, it is reported to have a design that will have Touch ID on the entire display. How cool is that?

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While iPhone 11 is still under wraps and users are excited for the new model to launch, iPhone 12 speculations have started circling. With these rumored specifications and new additions, iPhone 12 might supersede it.

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Windows 11 Teams Integration: How To Get And Use Chat From Taskbar

Microsoft Teams has been a prominent product for the company since the pandemic started. Microsoft has been doing its best to incorporate the app into Windows 11 so that everyone can access their meetings directly from their taskbar.

Is Microsoft Teams integrated into Windows 11?

Yes, Teams is now being introduced in Windows 11 as an in-built integration. Microsoft has been looking to push Teams as the number one video conferencing app for remote workers since the pandemic started.

It was natural for the company to integrate Teams into their biggest software product yet; Windows. Windows 11 Insider builds have now started providing the first look at this integration which can be found directly in your taskbar. The Teams integration is available on version 22000.71 under the Windows 11 dev channel.

What can you do with the new Teams integration in Windows 11?

The current integration introduced in Windows 11 is just a preview and only has the ability to chat and get notifications in your taskbar and the action center. Apart from this, you also get the ability to access your contacts and group chats using this integration.

As time progresses, and Windows 11 nears its final release, we expect Microsoft to introduce a fully integrated Teams application in Windows 11 that would allow you to perform all functions, including things like schedule and host meetings in your channels and organization. 

How to get the Chat icon on Windows 11 taskbar

Now enable the toggle for ‘Chat’ at the top of your screen under Taskbar icons. 

The Chat icon should now show up in your taskbar. 

I don’t have the Chat icon in Taskbar settings

Well, the feature isn’t available for you yet in that case. And that is okay as the feature is available only for a few users right now as Microsoft takes feedback and rolls it out gradually for all the Windows 11 insider build users.

How to use the Microsoft Teams Chat via Taskbar

Before you can use the Microsoft Teams Chat via taskbar, you will first need to enable this in your settings app. Once enabled, you will need to set up your account, after which you can use your Teams chat as desired. Let’s take a quick look at the procedure.

Set up your account

Verify your identity by entering your password. You should now be signed into Microsoft Teams via the selected account. 

Start a chat

A dedicated chat app window for the selected contact will now open on your desktop. Enter the desired message in the chatbox at the bottom of your screen. 

You can also use the various icons below the text box to insert attachments, emojis, GIFs, and more in your chat message. 

And that’s it! You will now have initiated a chat using the chat icon in your taskbar. 

Can you host meetings from your taskbar?

Microsoft is expected to introduce the ability to host meetings in the subsequent insider updates and it is expected to be a native feature at the time of Windows 11’s stable release in late 2023. 

Can you host meetings from the dedicated app?

Yes, you can still host meetings from the dedicated Microsoft Teams desktop app which can be installed from Teams’ official website. However, this is not to be confused with the integrated desktop app which can be accessed through the quick icons in your taskbar.

If you have both the apps installed on your system, you will see dedicated icons for both the app; your dedicated Microsoft Teams app, and the integrated Microsoft Teams desktop app. 

What happens when you install the Microsoft Teams dedicated app alongside Microsoft Teams integration?

For now, you can easily install Microsoft Teams dedicated desktop app on your system alongside the integrated app on the current insider build ie: 22000.71 without any issues. Both apps work properly and send notifications to your desktop without any issues.

However, we expect this compatibility to be rolled out soon, once the ability to host meetings is introduced in the integrated Microsoft Teams app. For now, you shouldn’t face any issues installing both apps side by side with each other. However, we would recommend disabling the notifications for one app to avoid getting duplicate notifications on your desktop system. 

Can you remove Microsoft Teams integration from Windows 11?

Yes, thankfully, for now, you can easily remove the integrated Microsoft Teams integration from Windows 11. However, this might be a temporary feature that might be removed from the final release of Windows 11. This remains to be seen, but for now, here’s how you can remove Teams integration from Windows 11. 

Visit: How to Remove Microsoft Teams Chat From Taskbar on Windows 11


Best Student Laptops In Australia

That’s because the New Year coincides with the announcement of a new generation of laptops. This year it’s Intel 12th-generation and AMD Ryzen 7000 processors that promise to bedazzle us with their power and efficiency improvements.

Admittedly, if you’re a student, these new laptops might be a little beyond your budget – if it’s any consolation, they’re most likely going to be beyond a lot of working people’s budgets too. But their very announcement does mean one good thing: Last year’s laptops with nearly as good specs may now be within your price range.

Landing one of these could go a long way to making your study easier, faster and more productive. Here are our top suggestions from that bunch.

Huawei Matebook X Pro


Best prices today: AU$2,399 at MobileCiti, Centre Com and Huawei

The 13.9-inch Matebook X Pro is only 14.6 mm thin and weighs 1.33kg, so is ideal for carrying in your swag or satchel to and from school or university. Portable though it is, under the hood it sports an Intel 11th-generation i7 processor. For that reason, this laptop is perfect if you frequently use programs that require a little oomph, like Adobe InDesign. While you can find Intel i7s (like the Dynabook Satellite Pro below) for a lot less, the Matebook X Pro shines in the display department with its 3K resolution and ultra slim bezels that should make its video playback extra crisp. Just months ago this laptop was priced at AU$2999, so its current price is a savings of AU$600.

Dynabook Satellite Pro C40-J (C40-J-00Y00J)

This 14-inch laptop comes in a hardware configuration ideal for your study day. While it’s a little heavier than some 14-inch laptops at 1.49kg, it’s also likely to be a little sturdier on your desk. It sports an Intel 11th-generation i7 processor, 8GB RAM and Full High-Definition IPS grade non-reflective display, the latter of which could come in very handy in glary classroom environments. The Satellite Pro C40-J has a range of useful connectivity options. It’s both Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5.0 compatible, and also comes with a multi-functional USB Type-C port, full-sized HDMI port, a Gigabit-Lan port and microSD card slot.

Acer Swift 3 Evo (SF314-511-56QF)


Best prices today: AU$898 at Harvey Norman

With an 11th-generation Intel i5 processor, 8GB RAM, 512GD internal storage and Full High-definition display, the Acer Swift 3 Evo has the functionality to tackle lightweight tasks in a study environment. These features alone don’t set it apart but one thing that does stand out is the Swift 3 Evo’s weight of just 1.2kg, that makes it one of the most portable 14-inch options you can buy. The Acer Swift 3 Evo also comes with a backlit keyboard, which will enhance visibility of your keyboard when studying at night, or in low light conditions.

Surface Go 3


Best prices today: Prices Start from AU$629 at Microsoft

The Surface Go 3’s small 10.9-inch tablet display means it’s not ideally suited to long study sessions or tasks where a bigger display would be useful, like cross referencing multiple browser windows. However, for school kids especially, it’s ideally-sized and versatile for school study and after school entertainment. In our review, we thought the Surface Go 3 would be especially useful for travelling on trains or buses where space is already tight. We also thought it had a decent keyboard, audio and webcam. It features the full Windows 11 OS, a rarity in desktop tablets. Read our review of the Surface Go 3.

Acer Swift X (‎SFX14-41G-R1S6)


Best prices today: AU$1,965.39 at Amazon

If buying one laptop for study and then another to game on seems overkill, this 14-inch laptop is one of the most affordable options that will allow you to do both – and do them well. The Acer Swift X is actually a gaming rig, sporting an 8-core, 16-thread AMD Ryzen 7 5800U processor and a dedicated Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 Ti graphics card. These features and 16GB RAM means it will not only power through any work you’ll need it for, but it’ll also tackle AAA games with gusto. Read our review of the Acer Swift X.

LG Gram 17 2023 (17Z90P)


Best prices today: AU$2,999 at Amazon

While the LG Gram 17 is a business laptop, it’s suitability for study is undeniable. It features a gorgeous 17-inch WQXGA display with 2560 x 1600 pixel resolution that offers plenty of visual real estate for watching videos or working in Microsoft Office apps. Yet it’s incredibly lightweight for a 17-inch laptop, weighing just 1.35kg. It also has a long battery life that will kick on for nearly 13 hours (even playing a 4K video continuously). But all this doesn’t come at the expense of the kind of power you need in a lightweight study companion; the Gram 17 we tested featured an Intel i7 processor. Read our review of the LG Gram 17 (2023).

What should I consider when buying a study laptop?

While there are many factors to consider when buying new laptops, three main factors jump out as being especially important for students. They are; portability, connectivity and battery life.


Having a small, lightweight laptop is preferable when running around a campus or school yard with a bag full of studying aids. For ultimate portability, laptops with display sizes measuring 11, 13 or 14-inches and weighing 1.5kg or under, are simply the best, allowing you to squeeze them effortlessly into your bag or satchel and carry them without breaking your back. The one exception to this rule is the LG Gram 17, which is a remarkably light and capable 17-inch laptop that weighs just 1.35g.

Dreamstime: Viktoriia Kotliarchuk


Good connectivity means being able to connect to the fastest Wi-Fi, or Wi-Fi enabled devices quickly and effectively. For this, a laptop that supports Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5, is ideal in today’s world. You should also ensure that your study laptop has an array of ports, preferably more than one USB Type-C port, and a HDMI port for compressing digital and visual data. This last port is especially useful if you plan on giving presentations.

Battery power

Finding a laptop that can last the length of a long day’s study session is harder than it looks. There can be a big difference between what the manufacturer claims and how long a laptop actually lasts, so as as a general rule go for one that states the longest battery life you can find in the product description.

Battery life can also vary depending on what you’re using your laptop for. For example, watching videos will usually drain the battery much faster than say, typing in a word processor, so it pays to be aware of that before you buy and try to find a laptop that fits your requirements.

Dreamstime: Pannarai Nak-im

It’s not uncommon for laptops made for work or study to last 13 hours or more, so we recommend a laptop that lasts no less than 10 hours between charges. Reading reviews is a good way to get an indication of how long a laptop is likely to last. Most reviewers will put laptop batteries through their paces with specialised testing that can give you a more realistic picture of what to expect.

What about things like processing power, storage and RAM, you say? If you feel up to it, and want to do a little more research, our in-depth guide to choosing a laptop will guide you through those nitty gritty details to  maximise your decision making. 

For Effective Schools, Teamwork Is Not Optional

The greatest resource that teachers have is other teachers. But sadly, teamwork and collaboration are not commonly found in schools. Having taught for 20 years myself, I know how it works.

Teachers have very challenging and stressful jobs, and part of what contributes to their level of challenge and stress is a teacher’s tendency to isolate him- or herself. How many teachers close their door and feel like they are all alone in fighting their overwhelming battle against ignorance and apathy and paperwork and standardized testing?

Isolation Is Not Effective

I remember my first year as a high school literature teacher. I began by adopting those exact habits of preparing alone and working in isolation. I was a lonely superhero who went home exhausted each day without the encouragement or support of my more experienced peers. I was right next to people who had answers and ideas that could have benefitted me, but I was too proud to ask for them.

It was only by the grace and generosity of a couple of seasoned teachers from my department that I was able to appreciate what I had been missing. They reached out to offer unsolicited assistance, build a relationship, and share a few encouraging stories with me. I had assumed that I could be more effective when planning and working alone, but I eventually found that, when working with people, efficient is rarely truly effective. It took a long time for me to realize that I could accomplish more and be far more effective and energized if I was willing to share ideas, ask for help, and lean on others.

That experience of connecting with other teachers and sharing ideas throughout the year had a tremendous impact on me as a young teacher. Over the years, it is what led me to share with and reach out to others who I felt might need encouragement or ideas. I realized that teachers have too much of a history of closing doors and doing things their own way — and that the isolated nature of teaching made it even more important that teachers have the time and incentive to collaborate.

The truth is that no industry succeeds in isolation or secrecy.

Building Meaningful Connections

Being a professional doesn’t mean that you have the opportunity to work alone. In fact, professionals in most every other industry are required to work together to improve performance. Whether they’re airline pilots, psychiatrists, or salesmen, successful professionals lean on and share ideas with others in their field.

There are two main types of isolation that teachers experience:

Egg-crate isolation: This is what I call the kind of isolation that is due to the physical layout of school buildings. Egg-crate isolation is the result of physical separateness, where teachers have little contact with others and feel as if they have no support system. To alleviate this feeling, instead of being tucked neatly away in separate rooms all the time, school administrations should give teachers the time and opportunity to talk and plan together, and to share laughter, encouragement, and ideas.

Avalanche isolation: This kind of isolation is the result of teachers feeling overwhelmed by their daily responsibilities of serving lunch duty, grading papers, making copies, attending meetings, learning new strategies, contacting parents, and the thousand other things on their to-do list. The best way to assuage this form of isolation is to focus on getting rid of egg-crate isolation.

The surest way to reduce workplace stress is to help your people build meaningful connections and feel like a valuable part of something larger than themselves. Building that kind of culture requires administrations setting aside time and emphasizing the importance of teacher teamwork instead of simply suggesting that it occur on its own.

Perhaps you could suggest a mandate that your staff spend just 30 minutes every week where one teacher can share a creative lesson plan, or where every teacher has to share his or her most challenging issue. These conversations open doors for sharing encouragement and insights while establishing the empathy that drives all great organizations.

If your school staff needs to share a few laughs, a day of teacher team building can be a powerful catalyst to boost morale, improve interactions, and establish a culture of collaboration. Teamwork is not optional for effective schools.

Effective administrations ensure that teachers can work together to plan, share ideas, and support each other. Once educators experience the benefits of collaboration, they will appreciate the camaraderie and creativity it provides.

12 Tips To Guard Your Pc And Mobile From Cyber Attacks

12 tips to guard your PC and mobile from Cyber Attacks

Use Genuine Operating System

Download OS updates

Alternatively, if you don’t want to enable automatic update you can download them manually. While opting for manual option make sure you check the updated once in 15 days to stay updated.

Also Read: What Is Rootkit and How To Get Rid Of It?

Run an antivirus

Macs also have their own security system but do install one on it also to give multi-layer security to your system. Also for mobile devices use an updated and genuine security app as mobiles are more prone to attacks.

Backup Data

Having backup of the data is very important. Therefore, always take automatic or incremental backup of your data. You can upload the data on cloud, on a flash drive, external drive or any media to keep securing. Data backup helps you fight against ransomware attacks.

Check system settings and configuration

Also Read: A Brief Introduction To Hacking


Avoid using default passwords, change them at the time of setting up the device. As hackers always try to access your device first time with the default password. Also use strong passwords a combination of numbers and alphabets making it hard to guess.

Use Firewall

Keep the firewall enabled as it helps to identify if hacker tries to access the device. Firewall provides maximum security to the system and helps to stay intruders out of the device.

SSL certificates

While accessing a website look for SSL certificate as it tells if a site is secure or not. SSL certificates prevent users from getting scammed and data theft. It adds an additional security layer to the website you visit.

Also Read: All You Need To Know About: Scareware

Keep a check on installation of third party programs

Most malicious codes come bundled with third party software. Therefore, while installing the program do check the signature and run them with absolute caution. Use trusted sites to download them and do extensive research before trusting on what they promise. Never allow automatic installation of any program or application.

Don’t pay ransom

Never trust hackers for what they say, there is no guarantee that once you pay the demanded amount they will send you the decryption key in case of ransomware attack. The best way to deal with such a situation is to keep backup of data. Also, many times it’s just a gimmick to grab money so don’t fall for such scams.

Read product review

Before downloading or falling for any product do read it negative reviews first and then go for it. Also, if you receive any warning message while installing them read it carefully. Don’t allow installation of add-ons as they usually act as browser hijacker.

Also Read: How to use Mac Parental Control on Mac OS High Sierra

These tips will help you add an additional layer to your device. If you are paranoid about your device security then as the first line of defense keep on changing device and accounts passwords quickly. This gives you an extra edge as hackers don’t use the password to access your account. They take some time so if you have a habit of changing passwords you can stay protected. Plus avoid saving your card details, social security number, bank account details online and offline both.

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