A strange thing happened here today at Amadeus Consulting; we walked outside and saw just the tiniest hint of springtime on the horizon!  With unseasonably warm weather on the seven-day forecast and sunny skies abundant, it seemed only right to focus This Week in Technology for February 26th, 2013 on some uplifting tech stories to warm everyone’s spirits.  So without further ado, let’s take a closer look why tech gurus like Mark Zuckerberg and Bill Gates want you child to learn how to code, how to construct your own assault rifle with a 3D printer, and a special thank you from the music industry for stealing less music in 2012.

Gates, Zuckerberg & More Promote Youth Coding

A new move by Code.org: Tech giants Mark Zuckerberg, Bill Gates, Ashton Kutcher, Bill Clinton and more are encouraging children and young adults to learn programming.Our first news story of the day will reach many of our readers on a personal level since we are all such avid fans of technology.  A new movement started by Code.org is encouraging children and young adults to take the time to learn programming through online and classroom initiatives so that they’ll be better prepared for the future.  Believe it or not, the endorsements for this program are flying in at a record-setting pace and you can read personal testimonials on the Code.org homepage from President Bill Clinton, Mark Zuckerberg, Will.i.am, Ashton Kutcher, and dozens of other high profile celebrities.  In fact, it’s practically a “who’s who” of the technology world with endorsements from dozens of the world’s biggest company CEO’s.

So what’s all the hoopla about?  Perhaps Jeff Wilke, a Senior Vice President with Amazon.com said it best- “Coders change the world.  They build new, amazing things faster than ever before.  Anyone with imagination can learn to write code.  “

If you’d like to join in on helping our youth learn how to code their way into a brighter future, feel free to visit Code.org to share a testimonial, follow this non-profit foundation, or find other ways to assist our youth.

3-D Printers Can Officially “Blow you Away”3-D Printer officially being used to modify a semiautomatic rifle with a 100 rounds magazine capacity

While it’s definitely not a secret that 3D printers are one of the neatest tech toys of the 21st century, few of us have really soared to new heights in terms of innovations to get the most out of our favorite new toy (and no, spending your weekend creating the almighty chip clip/remote control cover doesn’t count!).  Well, the forward-thinking minds at DefenseDistributed.com decided that their call to fame would be helping consumers gain access to hard-to-find commodities in today’s marketplace and their first project was <drum roll please> a semiautomatic rifle with a 100 round magazine capacity.

Feel free to check out the video on their homepage to see it in action.

Now we know what you’re thinking; doesn’t that kind of go against everything that Congress is trying to eliminate in today’s gun market?  It certainly does and it takes the 2ndAmendment to an entirely different level in terms of citizen rights.  For now though; schematics are available at the above link to partially modify your own rifle using a simple 3D printer.  If you’re interested, then we definitely recommend checking it out quickly because we have a sneaking suspicion that DefenseDistributed.com will not be around for long.

Thank You for No Longer Stealing Music

People has been downloading less music illegally in 2012, compared to 2011. It is attributed to the increase of the free music available online.

Our final tech story of the day is delivered as a personal “Thank You” from record labels worldwide since, according to global information company NPD, we officially pirated 17% less music in 2012 when compared to 2011.  The digital music industry posted all-time high profits through sites like iTunes and Rhapsody as well and users transferred an average of 25% less songs from their home computer to other digital devices.  Additionally, 40% of the nation’s consumers that were polled said that they stopped downloading illegal music because of numerous other ways to hear their favorite tunes.

Before you get all Justin Bieber on us though, it’s probably worth pointing out that the decreased music pirating levels can be directly attributed to websites that allow users to download songs and videos to their playlist for free.  In other words, the music industry is happy because we’re happy that we don’t have to steal anymore to get free music.  Either that’s the most ingenious bit of reverse psychology EVER or we’re completely missing the point here…

Anyway, that’s all for This Week in Technology.  Be sure to join us next week as we scour the planet for even bigger, bolder, and maybe even stranger tech news!