I AM sure it is nothing new when you hear of someone getting into an accident or tripping while walking because that person was too engrossed with his cellphone.

There is some news from Michigan that is quite thought-provoking. While driving, a woman hit and killed a cyclist last fall because she was too busy looking at her phone.

The judge sentenced her to two years of probation and six months in jail, as well as community service and fines. But here is another punishment that can actually be painful for her-–the woman was prohibited to own or use a cellphone for two years.

In 2013, over 3,000 people in the United States were reportedly killed in motor vehicle accidents due to distracted drivers who were using a cellphone, adjusting the radio settings, or eating while driving.

The judge said cellphone usage is not a right, but a privilege, and a privilege that could be revoked when it is not used properly.

Talking about services, it is with regret to learn of Yahoo closing down its Philippine news operations. Despite getting a new CEO, Yahoo still has tough challenges and continues to try to refine its operations as it seeks to grow its business and earn a profit. Just now, they announced that they were also shutting down their map site.

Yahoo Maps was one of the original ones (even earlier than Apple or Google) and I remember a few years back when everybody used it extensively to get driving directions. Since global positioning systems were scarce at that time and smartphones were not yet available (now most smart phones can be used as a GPS and can even give give driving directions), people would go to Yahoo to ask for directions. They would print out the instructions and bring it on roadtrips.

Other news I did not like hearing about was Cisco’s announcement of CEO John Chambers’ retirement. He will be replaced by Chuck Robbins come July 26.

John Chambers was at the helm of Cisco, arguably one of the most important companies that powers the majority of the Internet traffic for the last 20 years.

Cisco, at one time, became the world’s most valuable company, though it has been quite challenged the last few years. However, John Chambers continues to be well-respected.

In his address at the Cisco Live Conference, which was attended by over 25,000 participants, he predicted that over 40 percent of existing businesses will not survive the next 10 years. The only ones that will survive are those that turn their companies into digital, techie versions. He said 70 percent of the companies will attempt to go digital, 30 percent will pass, and the other 40 percent will fail.

(wilson@ngkhai.com)