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Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Three Short Takes

#1 - The Legalities of Texting Students

Why it’s awesome to be a non-profit

Dave Marshall | December 7, 2015

You want to text students. But you don’t want to break the law. (Orange may be the new black, but it’s still not your color.) Lucky for you, it’s fairly easy to stay in compliance.
Part of my job is working closely with our client institutions to help them answer a few key questions:
Can I legally text students? (Yes.)
Just because it’s legal, should you do it without a student’s permission? (No.)
How do I get their permission? (Let’s talk.)
We know that texting improves engagement, conversion and yield. But it has to be done the right way in order to stay out of hot water. Here’s what you...


#2 - VR Avator Lip Sync Plugin OVRLipSync Launched by Oculus for Unity

Herdi Wilson | February 15, 2016

<See original story at:>

Oculus the creators of the Oculus Rift virtual reality headset which will be finally be launching as a consumer unit next month, have this month released a new avatar lip synchronisation plug-in, which has been designed to be used with Unity and takes the form of OVRLipSync.
The OVRLipSync plug-in has been created to automatically detect and convert an audio stream from speech into movements on a virtual reality character within Unity automatically without any user interaction required. 


#3 - Agencies to become startups, GSA to become venture capitalist

Tony Scott gets into the details of the $3.1B IT modernization revolving fund

Molly Bernhart Walker | February 12, 2016

<See original story at:>

Federal agencies and departments will have to pitch their modernization plans to a General Services Administration board if they want investment from the proposed IT Modernization Revolving Fund, said Federal Chief Information Officer Tony Scott.
During a Feb. 11 panel discussion at the New America Foundation in Washington, D.C., Scott provided a bit more detail around the management of the fund, which is a core part of the administration's Cybersecurity National Action Plan and supported in the president's fiscal 2017 budget request to Congress.
"There are a couple of things that are different about this than prior approaches," said Scott.

The administration proposed $3.1 billion in initial seed funding for the revolving fund. But in its request, GSA only asked for a $100 million discretionary appropriation in fiscal 2017 for the revolving fund. Those funds will "accompany authorizing legislation establishing the fund with a one-time $3 billion injection of mandatory budget authority," said the GSA justification.
Scott said that initial $3.1 billion could yield up to $12 billion in savings and cost avoidance through the use of more modern systems.

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