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Startup helps you optimize yourself based on your DNA

(TECH NEWS) Based on your genetic code, your profile contains easy to follow lifestyle recommendations that will help you make the best dietary, fitness, stress management, and dental choices.

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I always hear folks in the weight room talk about fellow gym-rats who have the “right DNA.” When I was younger I never quite understood the analogies: Arnold Schwarzenegger had the right DNA. Legendary NFL running back Gale Sayers had the right DNA. Muhammad Ali had it in spades. You get the idea.

These are athletes who had/have the right stuff. They were gifted. Their talents came naturally. Doesn’t mean they didn’t have to train but somewhere in their genetic makeup they had a spark that the rest of us did not. Somebody else could run all day long or lift all sorts of weights but for some guys and girls it’s all for naught; they just don’t have it.

That doesn’t mean that the rest of us lesser mortals should give up and stand in the corner with gum on our nose. It just means we should work to maximize the cards we were dealt. I may never know the thrill of bursting through a hole and scampering 100 yards for a touchdown but new-kid-in-town DNA Lifestyle Coach will tailor a winning profile for me based on my genetics that will have reaching for new heights.

DNA Lifestyle Coach is a genetic test and results interpretation engine that will help you choose the optimal diet, sports, dental and skin care products, and stress reduction activities.

All recommendations we provide are heavily supported by widely regarded peer-reviewed studies as well as professionals in nutria-genetics, sports genetics, psycho-genetics, and beer-genetics. Ok, that last one I made up just to see if you were paying attention. Anyway, your genetic profile is a highly customized wellness advice, based on your personal genetic peculiarities and lifestyle.

Once your DNA is tested, Lifestyle Coach processes your results through a patented AI engine to offer easy-to-follow instructions that allow users to optimize their body and mind’s performance. Easy-to-follow lifestyle recommendations help individuals make the best dietary, fitness, stress management, and dental choices.

And that’s not all, Lifestyle Coach’s Fitness panel determines the sporting activities that are the best fit for you, taking into account if you are prone to injury, your aerobic vs. anaerobic abilities, best fitness regimen and amount of exercise needed to lose weight, get fit and achieve better results.

OK, so now you get how it works. Indulge me for a minute. Check this out: I recently read in Runner’s World (this month actually) about athletes tapping into new startups like Lifestyle Coach (on Kickstarter or similar) to analyze their DNA and learn how to improve their athletic and physical performance.

But why can’t this particular app tell you how to optimize your sleep schedule, what to eat for your brain power or how to improve your work productivity? Heck, it doesn’t HAVE to be just health related. I’m sure our DNA can shed some light on how to maximize our work life and mindset. Maybe it can tell us how to become better managers and leaders.

Everything is becoming Smart: our homes, our cars and even our coffee pots. But the original smart app is the one coursing through our veins. If we can tap into and harness that power I’d say we all need to watch out.

This story was first published July 2015.

The American Genius is news, insights, tools, and inspiration for business owners and professionals. AG condenses information on technology, business, social media, startups, economics and more, so you don’t have to.

Tech News

Anti-surveillance mask – creepy, ingenious, or potentially illegal?

(TECHNOLOGY) Advances in surveillance tech have impressed the masses, but as our cultures consider the risk and reward, some are preparing to protect themselves from overreaching technologies and governments.

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anti-surveillance prosthetic

How many surveillance cameras do you pass when you walk down the street? Most of us don’t know and prefer not to think about it. We know that public and private entities, from social media sites like Facebook, to law enforcement agencies, are using facial recognition software. In most cases, we haven’t actively consented to this surveillance, and we don’t know what will be done with information – but it also seems like there’s not much we can do about it.

Enter artist Leo Selvaggio, who is interested in “increasing the amount of public discourse about surveillance and how it affects our behavior in public space.” Selvaggio has launched a venture called URME Surveillance, whose focus is “protecting the public from surveillance and creating a safe space to explore our digital identities.”

URME is doing this is in an unusual, and admittedly kind of unnerving way. The site provides masks, in the likeness of Selvaggio’s face, that you can wear in public to protect your own mug from ending up on file. These “Personal Surveillance Identity Prosthetics” are sold at cost – Selvaggio isn’t in it for the profits. There’s a $200 resin prosthetic, a set of 2D paper masks for large groups (protestors?), and a downloadable PDF paper mask that fits together like a 3D puzzle, giving the mask more dimension than the flat, 2D version.

paper anti-surveillance

“Our world is becoming increasingly surveilled. For example, Chicago has over 25,000 cameras networked to a single facial recognition hub,” explains the URME website. “We don’t believe you should be tracked just because you want to walk outside and you shouldn’t have to hide either. Instead, use one of our products to present an alternative identity when in public.”

Is this product a genuine solution to non-consensual surveillance? Or is it simply an artist’s attempt to make a statement? The 3D resin mask is fairly realistic, but with the wearer’s eyes peeking out of the mask’s holes, it’s creepy, to say the least.

anti-surveillance face

While the mask may thwart surveillance cameras, it will probably attract attention from other people nearby – so perhaps anonymity isn’t the goal.

It’s more about making sure that your face doesn’t end up in a databank; or at the very least, inspiring conversation about the topic of public surveillance. Potential customers should also be advised that many states and cities have laws against wearing masks in public.

Regardless of the ultimate intention, the fact that Selvaggio is willing to sacrifice his own likeness to Big Brother means that he takes the issue seriously. Cameras linked to facial recognition software will identify and track Selvaggio, regardless of who is under the mask. URME has actually tested the product using Facebook’s “sophisticated” facial recognition software.

Selvaggio even acknowledges that people could use the mask to commit crimes, which could land him in hot water. However, he has “come to the conclusion that it is worth the risk if it creates public discourse around surveillance practices and how it affects us all.”

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Tech News

For meetings that should be an email? There’s an app for that

(TECH NEWS) If you’re tired of having your precious work time taken up by useless meetings, there may be a solution.

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Have you ever attended a meeting that turned out to be a waste of time and set you back on your work? I’m going to go out on a limb here and assume that every person reading this article is nodding in agreement.

Meetings, if executed appropriately (and sporadically,) can be effective. However, having weekly (or even daily) meetings that are designed to catch-up or give reports can add up to a ton of wasted time.

Across the board, meetings are generally geared towards productivity, and oftentimes they are counterproductive. So, how can you still get that need for touching-base with employees while still being productive? StandupMeet might just have the answer for that.

StandupMeet is a tool designed to make meetings more productive and agile. According to their statistics, more than $37 billion per year are being spent on unproductive meetings.

The main features include: the digitization of meetings, the instantaneous sharing of minutes, and the ability to assign actions and keep track of progress.

By making the meetings digital, you organize meeting points in one place. Decisions, actions, and key points can be logged in real time and accessed before the meeting.

This makes projects more agile and helps to increase critical success factors.

With instantaneous sharing of minutes, you can collaborate and share minutes of the meeting, key result areas, and action points. This is also done in real time and is shared with colleagues to make sure that each person is on the same page.

Finally, by assigning actions and keeping track of projects helps to ensure data integrity and provides accountability to each team member. Automated reminders are available so that you can spend your time on the more valuable tasks first.

In addition, StandupMeet also offers: project wised meeting, customized meeting types, organized agendas, shareable meeting minutes, accountability, reminders to ensure time is being appropriately applied, recurring meetings, conflict-free meeting scheduling, locations, automated follow ups, automatically tracked action points, and flexibility across time zones.

This can save time and increase productivity for on-site workers and can also be beneficial for teams that are remote.

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Drag keeps your email insanely organized

(TECH NEWS) Determining the best way to organize your tasks is a task in-and-of itself. A new app is here to help you organize your emails.

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Finding the best way to keep yourself organized can be trial and error. And, there’s not one correct method for every element that you have to keep organized in your life. How you track your finances may be completely different from how you organize your art supplies.

All of this can vary based on the person at hand, as well. Some people are visual, some are list-makers, some are a combination of a little bit of everything.

With much of our work and communication being done in the virtual world, one of the more crucial organization concepts to determine is how to organize your email. This is something I just recently found a good-method-for-me after years of everything just being scattered in my inbox.

Now, a new application is available to help people be proactive in their email organization.

Made specifically for Gmail users, the Drag app exists to change the way you organize.

According to developers, “Drag lets you transform your inbox into organized task lists. Sort your emails between pipeline stages (To Do, Doing & Complete) with simple drag ‘n drop, and mark as complete. Change the way you manage your emails, right inside your Gmail inbox.”

The platform is designed similar to a site like Trello, where you have columns of cards (in this case, emails) you can customize.

Drag’s example shows a “To-Do List,” “In Progress,” and “Complete.” This way, users can keep track of what emails still need attention as well as seeing exactly where they’re at in the attention stage.

This is great for someone who has many task-oriented emails. However, if you’re someone like me who has many folders/labels for email organization, the visual aspect may become overwhelming quite quickly.

With that being said, there is still the option to keep the folders/labels while introducing the visual aspect. As someone who is very list-oriented, this could be a beneficial way to enhance organization.

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