All Articles Tagged "software"
Get out of your Apple-induced haze. Microsoft also has some new stuff that they’re hoping you’ll pay attention to.
One item is Windows 8, its latest operating system, which went on sale today. According to The Wall Street Journal, Windows powers nine out of 10 computers in the world. The story also says that computer makers are hoping that the new system will inspire PC sales, which have been in a slump recently, with consumers opting for mobile devices like smartphones and tablets.
“Microsoft and its hardware partners plan to market Windows 8 heavily, together spending hundreds of millions of dollars on ads. Microsoft is also opening 34 temporary stores this week, mostly in malls, to show off the new ware,” the article reports. If you watched Scandal last night you probably noticed that the next episode in two weeks (the Country Music Awards will be on next Thursday) will be “brought to you by Windows 8.” A check of the ABC Network’s website shows that a few shows are being brought to you by Windows.
And Oprah’s OWN has signed on with an app. Getting brands to sign on for apps is the next big hurdle, says the WSJ. While some magazine companies, Conde Nast, for instance, have jumped on the system with their apps, others like Meredith, haven’t. In fact, Reuters reports that many businesses say they have “no compelling reason to adopt” the new system.
Besides the new operating system, there’s also the new Surface tablet, which, The Washington Post says, has gotten some good reviews, but the reception has otherwise been mixed. It starts at $499, but you will need to spend extra for a cover that is a necessity for content creation.
However, both CNET and TechCrunch argue that the Surface is not a true tablet. “If Microsoft succeeds, in reality, it will create a new category. Surface is something between tablet and a laptop,” says CNET, citing that keyboard as a reason it’s something else entirely. TechCrunch goes so far as to call it a straight up PC. Saying its “hard to handle” because of its operating system, Windows RT, the story continues, “The problem here is that the Surface is basically a big laptop screen without the keyboard.”
Praising the device for its ability to handle the writing duties of a TechCrunch reporter, the writer also had criticisms for its size, screen, and photo-taking abilities. If you’re curious about the device, it’s worth it to read this review as well as some of the others.
Any thoughts out there? Will you be investing in a new Microsoft product?
“A Dollar and A Dream” spotlights low- and no-cost ways to build a better business. The economy may be lagging, but new resources are empowering small business owners like never before. Follow the series to learn how to take your dreams to the next level without breaking the bank.
Your success in business is directly linked to how you produce your product. Maximizing productivity can be difficult for small businesses where manpower is in short supply. Luckily, improving productivity isn’t always about working harder; you may just need to work smarter.
New apps are hitting the marketplace everyday, designed to streamline business systems and help owners and employees get the most out of their time and efforts. The tools below allow for greater efficiency in managing billing, information, tasks and time. This selection only scratches the surface of what is available. Check out “Go Digital: Web Tools for Every Business” for even more recommendations.
When searching for a reliable app, first take a look at how you do business. What tasks or areas are you slowing down? Once you pinpoint the areas where you need to save time and money, the answer is just an Internet search away. It’s hard for a good app to stay a secret for long. Reviews from users and business publications will give you a good idea if a tool has the right features for you.
Here are a few common issues apps solve:
“I’m always late.”
Platform: iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch
Benefit: Analyzes your schedule to provide timely reminders to keep you on schedule.
How It Works: OnTime syncs with your existing calendar and takes into account your current location, the location of your next appointment, and traffic patterns to provide accurate alerts to keep you on time. It will even alert your next appointment if you are running late. Perfect for busy individuals who complain about time getting away from them.
“My team works remotely and has trouble staying on the same page.”
Platform: Web, Desktop (Mac), and iPhone
Price: Free app ($9 monthly service fee / $99 yearly)
Benefit: A central location to create and delegate project tasks and keep project updates from being overlooked in e-mail.
How It Works: Flow is an online collaboration platform. Invite contacts to join a task or project list whether they have an account or not and you can tackle projects as a team regardless of location. The app allows you to delegate tasks, keep track of each team members’ progress, as well as discuss and collaborate issues in real-time. Payment options are available on a yearly basis or month-to-month for special projects.
“My team wastes time tracking me or a client down to sign off on documents.”
Solution: DocuSign Ink
Platform: Android, iPhone, iPad
Price: Free (paid version $14.99 and up)
Benefit: Send, sign and save documents anywhere, on any device.
How It Works: DocuSign is the most widely used eSignature software and provides extra document encryption, authentication of signers’ identities, and tracking of who signed, when, and where. The paid version offers additional features including sending documents to multiple parties and creating reminders.
“We have so much paperwork to keep track of, our filing system takes up too much time.”
Benefit: Turns your iPhone into a multipage scanner.
How It Works: Don’t waste time looking for paperwork. Take a picture of documents, receipts, notes, whiteboards, or other text and TurboScan will generate a high quality PDF or JPEG file that be stored and shared easily. All processing happens on your iPhone, so there’s no need to worry about your confidentiality being compromised.
“I have too many small tasks to keep track of; I feel like I’m always forgetting something.”
Platform: Web, Desktop (Windows and Mac), Android, iPhone, and iPad
Benefit: The classic to-do list, updated with the functionality and portability of modern technology.
How It Works: Wunderlist manages whatever needs to be done, from shopping list, to projects, to to-dos. Unlike a conventional to-do list, you don’t have to keep track of a piece of paper. Wunderlist syncs your lists across platforms, allows you to set reminders or notifications, and lets you share your list via email, Facebook, or Twitter. It’s one of the more elegantly designed to-do list apps on the market.
“I haven’t perfected setting hourly rates for my clients; I think I’m under-billing.”
Benefit: Especially helpful for new freelancers and contractors who aren’t sure where to begin when setting prices.
How It Works: The app helps you calculate rates for a project based on the tools, help, and supplies you will need. Just plug in what you’ll need to get the job done. The app will calculate how much you should charge to turn a profit. MyPrice is also beneficial in helping business owners think critically about the resources and expenses at their disposal for a given project.
Do you have any apps that your business swears by? Help out your fellow entrepreneurs and share them in the comment section.
In today’s world, earning a college degree can be done through a variety of ways. Some students will attend regular brick and mortar classes while others may enroll in hybrid classes that are a mixture of online and in-class work. However, a large percentage of college students nowadays are earning their college degree online. Online schooling is widely praised and attracts many due to the fact that it is convenient and offers more flexibility than normal classes. With online school you can do your work wherever you have a computer and an internet connection.
Though online schooling is much more convenient for those of us with busy schedules, flexibility doesn’t mean that earning a degree online is any less demanding; in fact many would say it’s just the opposite. Online college students have to be extremely self-motivated and organized in order to be prepared for online discussions, homework, as well as tests. Here are seven tips that will be helpful in assuring you are successful at earning a degree online:
Current Occupation: Software Engineer
Recent read: EntreLeadership by Dave Ramsey. The Hunger Games trilogy by Suzanne Collins.
Twitter handle: @commandmobile is the Twitter handle
Welcome to another installment of “Behind the Click” where I bring you a look at today’s African-American female movers and shakers in the tech world. This time, I had an opportunity to connect with DeAnna Davidson who is President and CEO of Tracen Technologies. Tracen specializes in enterprise mobile software applications, integrated mobile and web solutions, and IT Program Management support for commercial and government customers. If it sounds heavy duty, it’s because it is. DeAnna is quite an achiever and has an impressive background in the realm of math & sciences. This is my first look at someone quite like DeAnna so I think you will find her background and current responsibilities nothing if not inspiring. Here we go!
LdC: So I read that you attended North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics? How did you decide on that school?
DD: The first time I heard about NCSSM was at a summer program at Wake Forest University the summer before 9th grade. As soon as I heard about it, I was hooked. It seemed like a challenge, something rare in my academic career, and it seemed like a great opportunity to be exposed to so much more academically than was available at my local high school.
LdC: What was it like for you in North Carolina?
DD: I was in academically gifted classes from sixth grade on. That meant that all through middle school and early high school I was either the only African American student (male or female) in most of my classes or one of the very few. Programs like the Awards Committee for Education, Duke University’s Talent Identification Program and the option of attending NCSSM were excellent opportunities for a student like me. In many ways, I was very fortunate to have grown up in NC and have those resources available to me.
LdC: What led you to pursue an MBA?
DD: My husband and I started Tracen, a technology company, in 2000. With an undergraduate degree in Computer Engineering, I felt very confident about my technical ability and wanted to have the same confidence in my business acumen. So, an MBA seemed like a good idea.
LdC: Tell me more about Tracen?
DD: My husband and I founded Tracen in 2000. While working for a government contractor developing mobile software applications back in 1998, way before everybody had a gadget in their pocket, I got really passionate about the advantages mobile technologies could bring to any industry. When we started Tracen, we knew we wanted mobile technologies to be a focus area for the company. We also felt very strongly that we could create a company that would be a great place for developers and technologists to work and feel valued and be treated well.
Most entrepreneurs start with an idea, or a love a particular industry. Having relied on their bosses to focus on the details of keeping their place of employment in order, many are at a loss when setting up their own companies. Bryan Janczko understands this scenario completely. As a small business owner who has started more than one enterprise and sold one for millions, his latest firm Wicked Start aims to transfer his wisdom to new entrepreneurs. Based on his own personal experience and that gained by answering many questions as a speaker on the small business lecture circuit, Janczko has formulated Wicked Start — a structured system to make starting a firm more manageable. The New York Times details how Wicked Start works:
The heart of Wicked Start is a series of customizable templates for each of 10 steps in starting up a business, running from producing a business plan to raising money to building the company’s infrastructure to marketing, and more. The site automatically tailors the templates to any of several industries, such as brick-and-mortar retail, e-commerce, consulting or food services, covering about 70 percent of start-ups, according to Mr. Janeczko, and users can further customize as needed. Each template lays out action items, including pinning down your business idea and creating PowerPoint presentations to hit up friends and relatives for financing. It goes on to help with taking on partners, setting up a marketing plan and signing a lease. The items prompt you to set deadlines and to create e-mail reminders to nudge you to stay on track. In a sense, it’s a project management tool that’s been thoroughly adapted to the project of getting a company off the ground.
Janczko stresses that Wicked Start does not have to be followed exactly to be helpful. While the program provides timelines and reminders in addition to forms, what sets it apart is its component of built-in inspiration. Wicked Start’s community features, how-to videos, and educational articles guide participants every step of the way with a human element that is missing from similar online tools.
Speaking of similar tools, The Times also recommends BizTree as an essential element for any start-up’s success. While a bit pricey at almost $250, BizTree grants access to over 1,500 downloadable documents that assist sole proprietors with forms for things like hiring employees and setting employee policies. Definitely a time and money saver for a small business.
The plethora of small business tools available online makes it easier than ever to get an idea off the ground and manage the process efficiently. Although capital, talent and drive are key, don’t underestimate the power of technology to fuel your new venture’s success.
In US Senate Race, Florida’s ‘First Black Governor’ Faces History [ENTREZ]
Sheriff: Timbaland Did Not Attempt Suicide [ENTREZ]
Police Officer Sentenced To 10 Years After Shooting Unarmed Man On Motorcycle [ENTREZ]
Software Predicts Who Will Commit Crime [ENTREZ]
How Did I Have a Stroke in My 20s? [ENTREZ]
(Read Write Web) — In my previous few articles, I’ve explored the potential impact of sensors on the Internet. Soon there will be a trillion sensors connected to the Web, which will result in an explosion of online data. How will this mass of new and mostly real-time data be processed and analyzed? Will current data analytics software be able to cope? The short answer is, no it won’t. New types of analytics software will be required, together with much more powerful computers. During my visit to HP Labs last month, I sat down with Meichun Hsu – director of the Intelligent Information Management Lab at Hewlett Packard – to discuss this issue. Hsu has been researching new real-time, sensor analytics solutions for the coming Internet of Things era.