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Teaching tech may improve a student's life and help the economy too

This week's Searchlight illuminates volunteers who are teaching tech, the human face of 'big data' and more.

We know that as an IT professional, you're a very busy person. Your so-called "free time" is probably filled with family obligations, time with friends and catching up on important reading (ahem). With that in mind, we'd still like to bring special attention to the first item in this week's Searchlight. When the idea of volunteering in schools comes up, it's usually associated with after-school programs, reading with little ones or helping with math homework. But computer techies can make a difference in a young person's life too.

Karen GoulartKaren Goulart

As this week's lead item illustrates, sharing your skills teaching tech could make a difference for the country as a whole. That's powerful stuff! And now we'll dispense with the proselytizing and point out that this week's roundup also includes one last poke in at the Apple Maps app (of course), features some insight on Windows 8 from a guy who knows a thing or two, and takes a rather unique look at "big data."

  • Just because kids today are glued to their smartphones, tablets and other tech toys doesn't mean they care about the science behind them. Meet some dedicated folks who are out to show this generation there is a future behind their fun by becoming volunteers and teaching tech in public high schools.
  • Every blogger and his brother have a take on the forthcoming Windows 8 operating system, but we're particularly interested in what this Paul Allen guy has to say.
  • Check out more coverage of these Searchlight topics

    Seeing is believing in 'big data' visualization

    Computer training gives unemployed a fresh start

    Best iPhone 5 coverage from around the Web

  • Does "big data" hold some amazing potential beyond helping companies sell more widgets? Photographer and apparent optimist Rick Smolan thinks so, and he's out to prove it with the recently launched social experiment "Putting a Human Face on Big Data."
  • You've probably heard by now that Facebook has become the McDonald's of social media (they reached the billionth-"customer" mark this week). But have you seen the oddity that is the company's first-ever commercial? We get what Facebook is going for, but when it comes to emotional provocation, it might want to take some notes from the master.
  • And finally, while plenty has been written about the woefully executed Apple Maps app, our favorite jab has to be this artistic reinterpretation of the epic iPhone failure.

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Would you volunteer for teaching tech at your local high school?