Saturday, May 20, 2017

THE INTERNET OF THINGS: The upcoming biggest tech trend in history explained in free, online courses


It’s always good advice to encourage students to study subjects they enjoy.  Nevertheless, there are subjects that are so important that, despite whether we enjoy them or not, we simply need to have at least have some good basic understanding of them in order to have a smoother progress in life. One such subject is the “Internet of Things” (IoT) – its potential is extraordinary, it will be a basic key ingredient of life and work in the 21st century, and is touted to become the biggest tech trend ever.  Previous tech trends were generated by the introduction of personal computers and later, the internet.  IoT – is generating such a trend but, eventually, at an incredibly far greater scale – it’s the new megatrend unfolding right now and is likely to reshape the world as we know it.


The Internet we have today is actually an “Internet of Computers (IoC)” which links up and allows communication between people, between computers, and between people and computers. The coming “Internet of Things” has an additional group of players linked to the system – i.e., “things” – including practically anything with an on/off switch.  In this new scenario, there will also be communication between “things” themselves, between “things” and computers,” and between “things” and people.  Estimates of the number of devices connected by 2020 range from 26 to 100 billion.  It has been stated that the new rule for the future is going to be, “Anything that can be connected, will be connected.”


Connecting equipment, tools, and machines to the IoT network – will make them smart as they will be able to respond to or be directed remotely by another “thing,” a computer, or a person.  Some examples of communication under the IoT scenario include:
·         Your alarm clock wakes you up at 6 a.m. and then notifies your coffee maker to start brewing coffee for you;
·         Your car figures out the best route to your meeting venue and takes it;
·         Knowing that traffic is heavy, your car realizes that you will arrive late and texts the other party notifying them that you will be arriving late;
·         Your office equipment knows it is running low on supplies and reorders more.


Discussions on IoT have been taking place all over the world as people try to understand how it will impact their lives.  People are also trying to identify and understand the many opportunities and challenges that will come up as more and more devices start to join the IoT network.

For now, the best thing we can do is educate ourselves about what IoT is and its potential impacts on how we work and live.

“How the Internet of Things and Smart Services Will Change Society” and other FREE ONLINE IoT COURSES

“How the Internet of Things and Smart Services Will Change Society” is a free, online, introductory course that is aimed at anyone interested in learning about the “Internet of Things” and does not require you to have any technical knowledge as everything is explained easily and informally.


Part One: Societal Perspective
1.       Key Trends and Terms – IoT and Industry 4.0
2.       Smart Services
3.       Effects on Society
4.       Challenges and Opportunities for Society
Part Two: Business Perspective
5.       Key Trends and Terms – Digital Transformation & Business
6.       Smart Software for Smart Services
7.       Enabling Technologies
8.       Challenges and Opportunities for Business

·         To explore and/or enroll for this IoT course, please click here.
·         To explore this and other IoT courses, please click here.


Posted by: Dr. Nat Tuivavalagi

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

FREE MONEY FOR HIGHER EDUCATION: Scholarships for American and International Students


While studying at the University of Hawaii (UH), a friend told me how fortunate he was to be at UH. He did not apply for his scholarship till the very last minute, as he thought that there are so many students better than him and that he would not have a chance to get into the University.  He did not know that “everyone” was thinking the same negative thought - he was finally awarded the scholarship because he was the only one that applied.

It seems that the above incident is not an isolated case.  Christopher Gray found that each year some $100 million in scholarships go unclaimed while students drown in debt.  He confirmed that there is a lot of scholarship money out there. Through hard work and diligent searching, he landed himself a whopping $1.3 million in scholarships.

Gray came up with the idea for a mobile app to make things a lot easier for other students seeking scholarships. Later Gray teamed up with Nick Pirollo and Bryson Alef to become co-founders of what is known today as “Scholly” – a popular scholarship search platform.


“” recently made an assessment of 28 most popular scholarship search platforms in current use – including “Scholly”.  They found 11 sites not meeting their minimum criteria so these sites were not subjected to further assessment. They then carried out detailed evaluations of the remaining 17 sites which are listed below in descending order starting with the overall best. 

“Scholly” ranked  6th  and “Fastweb” was found to be the best site overall.  "Fastweb" is the easiest to use as it requires no registration to browse scholarship listings; it has both a searchable database and personalized matches; and is mobile-friendly.

“Fastweb” also has the most tools of any platform.  That fact, combined with a high score for scholarship availability, means “Fastweb” is the best platform for finding scholarships, managing deadlines, and tracking applications.


1)      Fastweb (9.3/10)
7) Sallie Mae (6.9)
13) Peterson’s (5.1)
2)      Cappex (8.1)
8) [TIE] Big Future (6.2)
14) Broke Scholar (4.6)
3)      Unigo (7.8)
8) [TIE] GoodCall (6.2)
15) Niche (4.5)
4)      Student Scholarship Search (7.1)
10) CollegeData (5.7)
16) Career One Stop (4.2)
5) (7.1)
11) Chegg (5.5)
17) Scholarship Portal (3.6)
6)      Scholly (7.0)
12) Start Class (5.2)
- - - - -

·         To access the “Fastweb” platform, please click here.

·         To access the “” article – with details of their assessment method, information on grants, internet address of all the original 28 sites compared, etc, please click here.

·         To access the “Scholly” story, please click here.


“scholars4dev,” short for “Scholarships for Development,” is an updated listing of international scholarships.  This site is specifically for people from developing countries, people who would like to pursue development-related fields, and people who seek global and national development through further education.

The aim of “scholars4dev” is to help you find opportunities for higher education and become agents of development in your own countries and the rest of the world.

[“Scholarship” here actually refers to a “scholarship program” where a number of individual scholarships are offered.  An example is the Fullbright Scholarship - a program, where not one but approximately 1 800 individual awards are made each year to foreign students to pursue a Masters or PhD degree in the United States.  The scholarship provides full funding for the duration of study covering tuition, textbooks, airfare, living stipend, and health insurance.]

·         30 International Scholarships [scholarship programs] offered by the World’s Top Universities
·         Top 10 Prestigious Scholarships for the Best International Students
·         22 Tuition Fee Scholarships offered by Universities for International Students
·         8 Distance Learning Scholarships & Tuition Free Online Degree/Courses
·         Top 10 Scholarships in Italy for International Students
·         Top 10 Chancellor’s /Vice Chancellor’s Scholarships for International Students
·         Top 25 Foreign Government Scholarships for International Students
·         Top 10 Scholarships for Study in Any Country or Anywhere
·         Top 5 Countries Where Tuition is Free in 2017
·         Top 100 International Scholarships to Watch Out For in 2017
·         Top 10 Scholarships in Australia for International Students
·         Top 15+ UK Scholarships for International Students
·         Top 10 Scholarships in Europe for Non-EU International Students
·         Top 10 Scholarships in France for Foreign Students
·         Top 25 Scholarships in Sweden for International Students
·         Top 10 Scholarships in Belgium for International Students

To have access to all the lists at “scholars4dev,” please click here.

Posted by Dr. Nat Tuivavalagi