An article in Wisconsin State Journal (Jan. 6, 2015), authored by Jeff Glaze, reports on Epic Systems’ tentative expansion plans that include five buildings “that pay homage to literature classics like ‘Charlie and the Chocolate factory,’ and ‘Wizard of Oz.'” Innovative office spaces are not new to Epic Systems as it “finished its third set of office buildings, called the Farm Campus, in spring 2013, along with an 11,400-seat expandable auditorium known as Deep Space.” More interesting, “Epic’s fourth campus expansion, dubbed Wizards Academy, remains about a year from completion…Its buildings are meant to mimic the look of older university campuses in the U.S. and university cities in England such as Cambridge and Oxford.” Epic Systems is a medical records software company and the article states that the idea is “to create an atmosphere that is enjoyable to work in and keeps your creativity going.” In an Xconomy Wisconsin article (9/9/14), Jeff Engle quotes a statement made by company founder Judy Faulkner about attracting and retaining young talent: “We are competing for talent with Apple, Microsoft, and Facebook…We need to give these people a reason to come to Wisconsin.”

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Fast Company’s Lindsay Lavine lists ten books that are, “either recently released or coming soon – that are on our radar for the first part of 2015.” Descriptions and release information are provided in the post entitled 10 New Books We’ll Be Reading This Year. Here are the titles:

Better Than Before: Mastering the Habits of Our Everyday Lives, by Gretchen Rubin

Make Your Mark: The Creative’s Guide to Building a Business With Impact, edited by Jocelyn K. Glei

Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity, by David Allen

Do Over: Rescue Monday, Reinvent Your Work, and Never Get Stuck, by Jon Acuff

Work Rules! Insights From Inside Google That Will Transform How You Live and Lead, by Laszlo Bock

Do the Kind Thing: Think Boundlessly, Work Purposefully, Live Passionately, by Daniel Lubetzky

The Work: My Search for a Life That Matters, by Wes Moore

The Like Switch: An Ex-FBI Agent’s Guide to Influencing, Attracting, and Winning People Over, by Jack Schafer Ph.D. and Marvin Karlins Ph.D.

New Rules of the Game: 10 Strategies for Women in the Workplace, by Susan Packard

Make Change Work for You: 10 Ways to Future-Proof Yourself, Fearlessly Innovate, and Succeed Despite Uncertainty, by Scott Steinberg

 

In a LinkedIn Official Blog post, written by Sohan Murthy, there is an interesting section that focuses on the “top skills in several countries including Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, India, the Netherlands, South Africa, United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom, and the United States.” Of the ones identified, these particular “skills trends stood out.” Summarized, they are:

  • Investing in STEM. “In the ten countries we looked at, science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) skills made up the majority of our top 25 list.”
  • Data. Data everywhere. …”Across the globe, statistics and data analysis skills were highly valued. In the US, India, and France, cloud and distributed computing skills were in particularly high demand.”
  • It pays to know a second language. “Internationalization and localization services are valued by companies that operate globally. As such, language translation skills were among the top 25 hottest skills in many countries.”
  • Rise of the technical marketer. “In 2012, Gartner analyst Laura McLellan predicted that by 2017, CMO’s would be spending more on technology than their CIO colleagues. With digital, online, and SEO (search engine optimization) marketing skills in our global top 25 this year, there’s strong evidence that this prediction may be coming true.”

 

 

Every year, in the January issue of Choice: Current Reviews for Academic Libraries, the editors name the best scholarly titles from the previous year. Here are selected computing, economics, and business management titles of interest from the January 2015 issue:

Big Picture Economics: How to Navigate the New Global Economy, by Joel Naroff and Ron Scherer.

Capital in the Twenty-First Century, by Thomas Piketty

Capital Wars: The New East-West Challenge for Entrepreneurial Leadership and Economic Success, by Daniel Pinto

Cloud Computing: Concepts, Technology & Architecture, by Thomas Erl, Zaigham Mahmood, and Ricardo Puttini.

Global Capitalism, Culture, and Ethics, by Richard Spinello

Going Viral, by Karine Nahon and Jeff Hemsley

In 100 Years: Leading Economists Predict the Future, ed. by Ignacio Palacios-Huerta.

It Began With Babbage: The Genesis of Computer Science, by Subrata Dasgupta

Mass Flourishing: How Grassroots Innovation Created Jobs, Challenge, and Change, by Edmund Phelps.

Smart Machines: IBM’s Watson and the Era of Cognitive Computing, by John E. Kelly III and Steve Hamm.

To the Cloud: Big Data in a Turbulent World, by Vincent Mosco

Vintage Game Consoles: An Inside Look at Apple, Atari, Commodore, Nintendo, and the Greatest Gaming Platforms of All Time, by Bill Loguidice and Matt Barton.

What Unions No Longer Do, by Jake Rosenfeld

 

Kirkus Reviews, a respected literary critique publication, recently started offering the Kirkus Prize, which is “a prize of $50,000 bestowed annually to authors of fiction, nonfiction and young readers’ literature.” The first annual prize was given in October 2014. According to the website, “Books that earned the Kirkus Star with publication dates between November 1, 2014, and October 31, 2015, are automatically nominated for the 2015 Kirkus Prize, and the winners will be selected on October 23, 2015, by an esteemed panel composed of nationally respected writers and highly regarded booksellers, librarians and Kirkus critics.” Current business-related nominees for the 2015 prize include:

One Nation Under God: How Corporate America Invented Christian America, by Kevin M. Kruse, Released: April 7, 2015, Reviewed: Dec. 14, 2014

Future Crimes: Everything Is Connected, Everyone Is Vulnerable and What We Can Do About It, by Marc Goodman, Released: Feb. 24, 2015, Reviewed: Dec. 18, 2014

The Summit: Bretton Woods, 1944: J.M. Keynes and the Reshaping of the Global Economy, by Ed Conway, Released: Feb. 11, 2015, Reviewed: Nov. 5, 2014

Irrational Exuberance: Revised and Expanded Third Edition, by Robert J. Shiller, Released: Feb. 1, 2015, Reviewed: Dec. 6, 2014

The Accidental Superpower: The Next Generation of American Preeminence and the Coming Global Disorder, by Peter Zeihan, Released: Nov. 4, 2014, Reviewed: Sept. 28, 2014

Citizen Coke: The Making of Coca-Cola Capitalism, by Bartow J. Elmore, Released: Nov. 3, 2014, Reviewed: Sept. 16, 2014

Too Big To Jail: How Prosecutors Compromise With Corporations, by Brandon L. Garrett, Released: Nov. 1, 2014, Reviewed: Aug. 26, 2014

Wall Street Journal’s Rubina Madan Fillion reports on the more than 350 responses received from WSJ readers regarding their favorite books of 2014, (whether published this year or not). These were the most recommended books:

  1. All the Light We Cannot See, by Anthony Doerr
  2. 10 Tips for Leading in the Middle East, by Tommy Weir
  3. Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption, by Laura Hillenbrand
  4. Flash Boys, by Michael Lewis
  5. Station Eleven, by Emily St. John Mandel
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