Friday, August 31, 2012

Screen ADD: What It Is And How To Fight It

Do you suffer from computer-screen attention deficit disorder? Here are some symptoms: You have five Internet Explorer tabs open at once. You're working on three Word documents simultaneously, and you are fiddling with two open spreadsheets, too. Basically, you are juggling so many on-screen tasks all at once, you're struggling to finish any one of them.

Computer-screen ADD hinders you from truly concentrating on one thing and completing it. Additionally it can be hard to prioritize your tasks and get the most crucial ones done first as you are preoccupied by all the other minor ones.

Focusing on a lot of things at once can hurt your productivity. But there are a couple things you can do help break these habits.

Resist the minimization urge

When we focus on many tasks at once, big and small, we can get in the habit of minimizing windows. We do this to set a task aside, but by doing so we are putting it off. By breaking this habit we force ourselves to focus on a task at hand until it is finished rather than putting it off.

Email filters

This is a very simple thing you can do to help you be more productive and stop screen ADD. You can create filters to send emails that are from certain people to your inbox and everything else is sent to another inbox. This will keep you from becoming preoccupied by the other emails and enable you to focus on the most important ones that you may have previously skimmed over.


Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Here Is What You Need to Do To Upgrade Your Operating System

Windows 8 is going to hit the market later this year, but a surprising amount of businesses have not even implemented Windows 7 yet. This might be a vital thing for businesses to do because as of April 2014, Microsoft will no longer support for Windows XP. So companies will have to upgrade to Windows 7, at the minimum, should they still want to receive formal support from Microsoft. Before rolling out a new operating system across the board it’s important that companies make sure their computers will be ready to make the change.

Analyze hardware and compatibility

The first step for your IT department or MSP is to analyze the hardware’s capacity to run Windows 7. Businesses can perform this by utilizing the Microsoft Assessment and Planning Toolkit 7.0; this will permit you to assess your existing equipment. Additionally, your Manage Service Provider will need to make certain that the company’s applications will work well with Windows 7.

What OS images to deploy

Businesses will need to determine whether they must deploy just the Windows 7 operating system and install applications later, deploy the operating system and all apps simultaneously, or take a combination tactic, deploying the operating system and the most crucial applications that are necessary for all users. Those who take the latter approach may then deploy other applications in the future as needed. This is a advise route as it is the fastest type of Windows 7 deployment.

Choosing the right image deployment tool

Once all of these things have been done, the last step in the process is for your MSP to decide on which tool they want to use. There are lots of tools a company can use to deploy the Windows 7 image. A couple being: Microsoft Deployment Toolkit 2012 and System Center Configuration Manager 2007 or 2012. These tools have different advantages and disadvantages that should be considered.

Upgrading to Windows 7, then, is a process that takes careful planning. Fortunately, those businesses who use MSPs or their IT departments to organize their deployment will boost their odds of a stress-free deployment.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Military Technologies That Could Change Our World

The military develops new technology constantly. And some of their more recent innovations may impact life as we know it more then you might realize. Here are a few interesting things they have recently developed.

The laser gun

You probably never imagined we would see the creation of the laser gun. It is the stuff of Star Wars and Star Trek, right? Wrong. The military has actually developed a laser gun that works and they call it the Excalibur. They are currently working on one that is 10 times lighter than the Excalibur so that it has more military application.

The doctor is in – your body

DARPA is focusing on nanoparticles that can treat illness and infection in the human body. The program is actually moving quickly, and researchers are currently working on this nanotechnology with large animals.

Thermal imaging on the cheap

Thermal imaging technology is not a new technology, the U.S. military has been utilizing it for a long time, but it’s a little pricey. That has lead DARPA to their current task of attempting to lower costs of thermal imaging technology through their Low Cost Thermal Imager manufacturing program. Ideally, through this work, we will see thermal imaging technology in cell phones and eyeglasses. The applications for this are truly endless.


Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Living Forever: You Might Get Your Chance

Have you ever seriously considered the implications of living forever? Would you want to if it were feasible? Well, according to scientist and author Ray Kurzweil, these questions may become more relevant in the near future. He predicts that we may identify the key to immortality in the next 20 years. This may have everything to do with nanobots replacing our blood cells.

Yes, that does seem like sci-fi. It sounds spooky, too, but Kurzweil is enthusiastic about this, and he boasts some very smart people as fans. According to Business Insider two famous and powerful Bills – Clinton and Gates – are big Kurzweil fans.

Rise of the nanobots?

Regardless of how “out-there” Kurzweil’s ideas are, they may be a very real possibility. In about 20 years, scientists believe they'll have found a way to halt andreverse the aging process. Kurzweil then thinks that nanotechnology will come into play, replacing human blood cells, and carrying out the work much more efficiently.

Exponential technology

Again, this soundsastounding, but Kurzweil is basing his predictions on one fact that can't be disputed: Technology has been advancing at an exponential rate. And this, Kurzweil argues, signifies that immortality is just a few technological leaps away.

That doesn't, though, answer the bigger question: Should humans live forever? What's going to happen to the earth? Will overpopulation destroy our natural resources? And, of course, is living forever even something people want? Won't those people who believe in an afterlife want to ultimately pass from this life? These are all big questions, and if Kurzweil is to be believed, we might all soon be confronting them.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Apps to Aid You During and Emergency

These are hazardous times. Nature is unleashing droughts and record-setting high temperatures. It seems like a new tornado is ripping through the Midwest every day. And those are just the big emergencies. Suppose you lock yourself out of your car when your toddler's stuck inside? Happily, there's a whole class of apps that will help you deal with emergencies big and small. Here is a closer look at three of these apps that might be able to bail you out in case of an emergency.


This app has existed for a while and is quite popular. It is a locator app that gives you the ability to find anything from a gas station to a hospital in your area. You can see how this could prove useful, if say, you are in a strange town and your kid unexpectedly gets hurt. You can simply open AroundMe and select the hospital category to find the closest hospital to you.

CPR & Choking

The name of this app says everything: CPR & Choking provides you with tips and full-fledged lessons on how to cope with a person who is choking or who is not breathing. It can be particularly handy if you have never taken CPR classes or have forgotten what you've learned. This app, which is free, was created by the University of Washington and King County EMS to save lives. It contains a variety of videos that tell you what to do if a person you know is in the middle of a medical emergency or cardiac event.

Emergency Radio Free

Emergency Radio Free is an app that gives you access to live emergency radio feeds across the country. You can easily tune it in to only ones in your neighborhood so if there is a fire, tornado, or an armed criminal in your area you will be the first to know.

These apps cannot shield you completely but they are good to have in your toolbox to help safeguard you should a crisis strike.


Tuesday, August 14, 2012

File Sharing Made Easy With Bump

Thanks to social media sites like Twitter and Facebook, sharing pictures and info has become easier than ever. Still, people are seeking even more simple ways to share stuff. In response to this need, iTunes offers the Bump app.

No more emails

With Bump, you will not have to send contact information or photos to your friends through e-mail. You can quickly move copies of your photos and contact information from your phone and onto the phone of a friend, relative, co-worker, or business associate. Actually, all you have to do is bump your phone against someone else's.

Living up to its name

To exchange files using Bump all you need to do is literally “bump” your phone against another phone. First you have to open the app and choose the files you wish to transfer. Touch your phone to another phone and bump your hands together. The app does the rest of the work and instantaneously transfers the files over.

Another great thing about Bump is that it is not restricted to smartphones; it also works with your computer. You decide on the files you want and tap your phone against your computer’s spacebar. Bump then transfers your files to the location you have selected on your computer.

A popular app

Bump was recently updated in June of this year and has gotten increasingly popular, with 90 million downloads. The Bump app is now available for both iPhone and Android phones. If you want to make sending files and contact information to people as easy as possible, check out Bump.


Thursday, August 9, 2012

Time Saving Shortcuts in Gmail

Gmail is one of the most favored email clients out there. It’s simple to use and powerful. If you are among the numerous people who use Gmail, prehaps you are not using it as efficiently as you could. You most likely don’t realize this but Gmail has a myriad of shortcuts to save you time. Better yet, there is a single trick that allows you to pull up all of the shortcuts at once.

The Power of ?

Here's how it works: Simply by pressing the question-mark key on your keyboard when you are not in a text-input area, you'll bring up a cheat sheet on top of your inbox of each and every single shortcut that Gmail features. Yes it's true, you'll have instant access to every single Gmail shortcut thanks to the question mark. You can also access this cheat sheet by pushing your "Shift" key and the "+" sign on your keyboard. But why do that when pressing ? is so much cooler?

The Shortcuts

There are a multitude of shortcuts at your disposal in Gmail, but just to get a taste we have described a few below.

  • By pressing the "c" key, you automatically begin composing a new message in Gmail. If you press "Shift" and then "c," you'll be able to compose that new message in a new window.
  • The "n" key moves your cursor to the next message in your inbox, while pressing the "p" key moves you to the previous message.
  • If you want to mark certain messages as being of high importance, hit the "s" key. This will star particular messages. If you hit the "-" key, you'll label a message as being unimportant.

Those hardly scrap the surface of the time saving shortcuts available in Gmail. These shortcuts may take some time to get used to but once you use them consistently they will become second nature and you will save a lot of time. There is no reason not to take advantage of the shortcuts accessible to you in Gmail. You may even save enough time that you can take a longer lunch and enjoy the sunshine.


Tuesday, August 7, 2012

The Constantly Changing Face of Technology

If you were a child when the Atari 64 came out, you were likely impressed by the graphics. Then Mattel released the Intellivision, and by comparison, the Atari’s graphics were outdated. Every time a new video game system was released it managed to trump the last one in graphics and game play.

As an adult you have a deeper perspective on technology. It changes very rapidly. Nowadays, as soon as a new state-of-the-art gadget comes out the last one becomes outdated.

Technology is constantly changing

Technology has long been changing, and as more and more comes out, this change accelerates. This does not surprise anyone. That being said, it shouldn't surprise consumers either. In today’s constantly evolving environment, the majority of us purchase technology understanding that it will become outdated in a few months.

Need tech help? Ask your kid

Kids are usually quicker to learn new things then their parents, and therefore, are better at adapting to the changing technological environment. If you are in your 40s then you grew up without the Internet, and your kids don’t remember when the Internet didn’t exist. So, as technology advances at an progressively rapid pace, younger generations are going to more easily adjust to these changes and accept new technologies.

Today’s hot tech is tomorrow’s obsolete operating system

Considering the rapid changing world of technology, it ought to be no surprise that the same goes for operating systems. Businesses like Apple, Google, and Microsoft come forth with new and improved operating systems regularly, both to stay ahead of the competition and to enhance the user experience. If you do not adopt new systems when they come out, it won’t be a long time before your computer is very outdated. Change is unavoidable, if you do not adapt to it, you'll be left in the dust and unable to reap the benefits that that change has to offer.


Thursday, August 2, 2012

Manage Your Employees the Smart Way with These 3 Apps

Starting a new business is no easy task. It's why so many businesses fail in their start-up years. Nonetheless, you can give yourself an edge in at least one area – the way you manage people. We've listed several apps for managing employees below. By using these apps, smart business owners can cut the time they spend on making sure that their personnel are as productive as possible.

Labor Time Tracker

It seems a bit old-fashioned to have your employee’s punch in and out using physical time sheets. A better option is Labor Time Tracker, an app which costs about $4.95 a month for each employee. With this app, employees punch in their hours on a electronic card. This allows you to see immediately who is working and who is out for the day. Labor Time Tracker also tracks overtime hours and pay. It will work, too, in multiple time zones.


Trello is an app for organization that is designed to keep business owners on task, but it also allows business owners to add employees to to-do lists. It keeps everyone on the same page as everyone in the company can see the duties and deadlines. Also you can send employees messages related to the tasks within Trello.


TribeHR is one of the most widely used and highest ranked HR apps on the market. It is very robust; you can track time off, schedule assessments, and keep up-to-date employee records. Plus, on top of all that it is affordable. It’s only $2 a month for each user. With this app you'll be able to keep track of things as if you had a large HR department.

In the current economy it is difficult enough to build a small business. Make your life easier by utilizing the many apps on the market that are built to help small business owners keep things organized.