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Day: March 30, 2017

The Best Alternatives to Working from Home

For many, working from home offers optimal comfort and a secluded space to get work done. Though, when you are an entrepreneur or freelancer and working from home is your norm, sometimes you need an alternative space to work for when you need to escape the home office. With the amount of technology & products that we have at our disposal, it is possible to run a business from remote locations. Luckily today there are numerous options available. From visiting the local cafe to joining a shared office space, an alternative office space exists to fit your needs.

The Local Cafe

With free wifi, places like Starbucks or your local coffee house offer a great remote working location. The noise can be a welcome sound when you need a break from the silence of your home office and being among the buzz can help with working from home isolation. Manage your to-do lists, answer emails, write, etc. all from the comfort of the numerous tables or seating options. Another perk? Easy caffeine refills.

The Local Library

Sometimes you just need a change of scenery. If you are still looking for a quiet place to work but need a break from your home office, consider going to the local library. Most libraries have large tables and Wi-Fi and allow you to linger for hours. They can provide a great space when you really need to focus and need minimal distractions. Just be sure to check their opening and closing hours and find a space with good lighting.

Co-Working Spaces

Increasingly popular in large cities, co-working spaces have significant benefits. Co-working spaces are defined as membership-based workspaces where diverse groups of freelancers, remote workers, and other independent professionals work together in a shared, communal setting. For those who have spent significant time working from home can probably relate to experiencing some type of isolation. One fix to avoid working from home depression is to surround yourself with people.

Co-working spaces allow you to work in a space with other people in the same position. They offer a great opportunity to share ideas with others, network, or even just meet for lunch. They can provide a breath of fresh air, spark inspiration and breed business connections. Also, studies have shown that people who work in co-working spaces thrive. Mainly because people who join co-working spaces see their work as meaningful, they have more job control, and they feel part of a community. An extra bonus is that many spaces have been designed for productivity and have plenty of natural light and large desk spaces.

Co-working spaces are popping up all over. From traditional office spaces to outdoor areas, there is a good chance that a co-working space exists close to your location. If interested, take a day to research your options and check them out in person. You might just find your next go-to remote location.

Hot Desk

Hot desking is an affordable option for many startups, freelancers, and consultants. Hot desk services are similar to co-working spaces, in that they provide you with a workspace, a high-speed internet connection and services such as printing. The difference is that many hot desk services allow you to rent the space down to the hour while co-working spaces are designed as a longer term solution. Hot desk services still allow you the opportunity to network and socialize with others and can provide a great short-term solution when you need to escape the home office for a short period.

Other Company Offices

If you have business connections or friends that have their own office, working from another company’s office can provide a welcome change of scenery. Meeting new people and observing the company culture can be inspirational and inspire ideas for your own business. Plus, you can make use of the facilities such as the printer or scanner. Just be sure to ask! Bringing coffee and treats never hurts.


Most people are cooped up inside all day and getting out for a breath of fresh air and some sunshine can do wonders. While most outdoor spaces don’t offer wi-fi, there are a few that do like public parks or outdoor restaurants. Though, working outdoors can provide a welcome break from internet distractions and allow you to concentrate on tasks such as writing a presentation or brainstorming. Being amongst nature and enjoying the sunshine can also provide a great place to take a break and think clearly. Take a notepad and jot down new ideas or finally tackle a business problem you’ve been putting off.

Vacation Resorts

If you are an entrepreneur or freelancer, probably one of the perks to working from home is the ability to work remotely. Take it from Thomas Smale, founder of FE International, sometimes the best way to recharge is to get away. Plan a trip and schedule your day just like you would at the office. Check emails by the pool or while looking out at the mountains in the morning and take a break by heading to the beach or going for a walk. When you come back to work, you’ll feel recharged and ready to tackle the next task.


When you are in need of a change of scenery or need to be around other people, there are numerous options available that provide a great space to get work done. You may be surprised by how much an alternative workspace can increase your productivity and creativity.

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Blood, sweat and tears: New ways to monitor glucose levels in diabetes – a $12billion market IDTechEx

People with diabetes have traditionally self-monitored their glucose levels using disposable biosensors and invasive sampling techniques. While this industry has been one of the success stories of the printed electronics industry, worth around $6 billion today, profitability is falling as government reimbursement models are changing and strain is put on both consumers and manufacturers. However new methods of glucose monitoring are emerging. These technologies are analysed comprehensively in the brand-new report from IDTechEx Research, Technologies for Diabetes Management 2017-2027: Forecasts, Players, Opportunities.

Glucose is present in many biological fluids at varying levels and a wide range of players are investigating ways to utilise these fluids for long term glucose monitoring. The most successful of these ventures have been in measuring glucose in interstitial fluid, where continuous glucose monitors are receiving regulatory approval and adoption by people with diabetes across Europe and North America.

Continuous glucose monitors consist of a wearable sensor and a receiver (which in many cases can be a smartphone). The sensor consists of a microneedle which sits just under the skin and records glucose levels at regular intervals and transmits these to the reader via Bluetooth or NFC technology. Sensors last an average of 6 days, and currently require regular calibration with blood based biosensors.

Companies are investigating the potential for glucose testing in sweat, tears and saliva with varying levels of success and these projects are also analysed in the new IDTechEx report.

Such long-term monitoring solutions will enable the creation of an artificial pancreas- a device that can monitor glucose levels and administer controlled doses of insulin accordingly- leading to fully automated diabetes control. The first such device received regulatory approval in late 2016 and is expected for release later this year.

Both insulin pens and pumps are using new sensor and communication technologies to enable new features, with several start-ups, backed by major pharmaceutical companies, developing new platforms to monitor insulin dosing and other vital information. Several forecasts in the report detail future growth markets for individual sensor components within a system as well as the market for the devices themselves.

Market value of glucose monitoring – for full forecasts please purchase the report

Source: IDTechEx Research report Technologies for Diabetes Management 2017-2027: Forecasts, Players, Opportunities.

The report examines diabetes technologies across 7 key areas:

Sensors for glucose monitoring – The established blood glucose market manufactures over 20 billion test strips annually, however, as is discussed here, several factors are restraining the profitability of the industry and driving technological changes.

Beyond blood glucose measurements – Glucose exists in biological fluids other than blood, continuous glucose monitors and wearable devices are gaining traction and seeing large uptake by consumers.

Sensors for Ketone monitoring – When blood glucose levels are too high, acidic ketone bodies, the by-product of improper metabolism build up in the blood stream, leading to potentially life threatening complications. The range of available biosensors to measure and quantify ketone levels are reviewed.

Smart insulin pens – Start-ups backed by large pharmaceutical companies are adding sensors and connectivity to insulin pens to unlock a range of analytical tools. Several leading start-ups and companies are profiled and their products discussed.

Insulin pumps: towards an artificial pancreas –  Compared to insulin pens, insulin pumps offer a more controlled rate of hormone delivery. Discussed is the progress whereby combining pump technologies with continuous glucose monitoring platforms is leading to the development of an artificial pancreas device, offering real-time sensor automated insulin delivery in response to changing glucose levels.

Sensors for side effects – Covering the diverse utilisation of innovative sensor technologies across novel aspects diabetes care, including; sensors in wearable devices, the ability to monitor other end points such as diabetic neuropathy as well as assessing ulcer development in diabetic patients.

Sensors for early diagnosis – Discussing the use of emerging technologies to aid the early detection of diabetes, thereby preventing long hospital stays and other complications.

The report has been created through primary research based on interviews with key player in the diabetes industry as well as physicians and people with diabetes to understand the emerging trends in diabetes technology and deliver market forecasts across several different technologies. This brand new report from IDTechEx Research is of key importance to innovators in medical device technology as well as players in the printed electronics, sensor, and wearable industries. The report highlights the significant factors that have been essential for the development of successful devices for diabetes management as well as analysing devices that have been unsuccessful in the commercial field.

Find out more at

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How To Stay Young (At Least In Spirit) When You’re Retired

Mohr Keet of South Africa bungee jumped when he was 96, landing himself in the Guinness Board of World Records.

Yuichiro Miura of Japan climbed Mount Everest when he was 80.

Not everyone in the golden years of life will attempt and accomplish such extraordinary feats, but most people can take steps to keep themselves young – at least in spirit – when they reach retirement.

Unfortunately, for many people retirement planning remains fixated on finances, so when the big day arrives they’re not quite ready to segue into life’s new chapter, says Ann Vanderslice (, president and CEO of Retirement Planning Strategies, which specializes in advising federal workers about their benefits.

“After you’ve planned for the money, there is still anxiety about retirement,” she says. “You don’t know what it’s like to not work and so there is that emotional part of retirement you need to manage. Sometimes people aren’t ready in any way, shape or form.”

She says a few ways to hang onto a little youthful exuberance while aging gracefully in retirement include:

• Be a lifelong learner.

Making the effort to learn about new things keeps our brains young. Read something you wouldn’t normally read. Sit in on a lecture that a college opens to the public. “Some of my clients mention they took classes in philosophy or in a foreign language,” Vanderslice says. “It’s proven that those who are lifelong learners have a greater sense of optimism and a lower chance of dementia.”

• See the world – or at least some of it.

There are no doubt plenty of places you haven’t ventured out to, some close by and others far away. Traveling and enjoying new experiences is a great way to keep you feeling young and enthusiastic about life, Vanderslice says, whether you head to a state park just an hour’s drive away or you board a plane bound for Paris. “Part of the fun of traveling is deciding where you want to go,” Vanderslice says. “The sky should be the limit.” Don’t eliminate anything from your initial list just because of expense, she says. You might be able to find bargains, and because you’re retired you can travel any time you want, which allows you go in the off season when prices are lower.

• Remember your doctor’s advice.

Activities such as enrolling in a college class can help keep you mentally young, but you want your body to cooperate, too. “We’re always looking for that magic bullet, the easy and quick way to feeling younger,” Vanderslice says. “The truth is that those things your doctor tells you – exercise, eat a healthy diet, get the appropriate amount of sleep – are about as close to a magic bullet as you’re going to get.”

“People think that money is the most important aspect of retirement, but it’s really No. 2,” Vanderslice says. “You can have more than enough money, but if you aren’t healthy or doing the things you enjoy, the money won’t matter.”

About Ann Vanderslice

Ann Vanderslice (, president and CEO of Retirement Planning Strategies, helps federal employees understand their benefits, maximize the value of their benefits, and plan for retirement, as well as organize income planning and IRA distributions. Vanderslice holds the Registered Financial Consultant designation from the International Association of Registered Financial Consultants and the Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor designation from the College for Financial Planning. She is author of “Fedtelligence 2.0 – The Ultimate Guide to Mastering Your Federal Benefits.”

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