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Want To Enjoy More Family Bonding? Install A Home Theater In The Basement

Posted by on Nov 29, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Between work, school, homework, sleep, and cooking, you may find it challenging to set aside enough time to truly bond with your family. Sitting at the dinner table together might be something, but you may be interested in doing something more, and your house may not make it easy to accomplish this goal. Knowing that your family wants to bond with each other more is an incredible start. Then, you can follow up with installing a home theater in the basement, which can open up lots of bonding opportunities. Perfect Place to Look Back at Old Family Photos and Videos Almost every family has photos and videos to enjoy from years ago, and a home theater is the perfect place to share them. It might be necessary to transfer your old photos to a computer by scanning them or hiring a professional to do it all for you by putting the collection on a CD and flash drive. This allows you to easily transfer the photos to your computer or access them directly from your home theater TV. Going through history in comfortable seats and with an HDTV can certainly add to the experience. Gather for New Movies or Television Series It is typically easy for almost anyone to meet common ground through movies and television series. One person might not love a series, but they may like it and appreciate it for what it is. Your family may be able to agree on a certain genre of movies or a particular television series to watch together. A home theater is a little different in that it is a truly dedicated experience just for enjoying media. TV series are fun to keep up with because you can get excited about the new episodes with your family each week. Movies are also great because you can finish a whole story in one sitting and discuss it afterwards. Get Immersed into Yearly Events Another way that a home theater can benefit your family is with yearly events. Things like the Superbowl, Thanksgiving Day Parade, and the NBA Finals are some examples. Then, you also have events that do not happen each year, but are equally if not more crucial, such as the Olympics and the FIFA World Cup. It is easier to get fully immersed when you are comfortable and looking at an HDTV all the while listening to high-quality sound from a surround sound speaker system that you had installed by professionals. The basement is an ideal place for a new addition that can help with family...

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Scanner Maintenance Tips

Posted by on Oct 21, 2016 in Uncategorized |

The office scanner may compete with the copier as most important piece of communal office equipment because a scanner makes quick work of scanning and uploading documents for digital access, future printing, or copying. Some scanners can even serve multiple functions if they have a built-in fax machine. Properly maintaining an office scanner is a must to ensure continued useful service. The following tips can help. Clean the glass daily Dirty glass is the most common reason for poor scanner quality. Even small fingerprints or pieces of dust can lead to unattractive spots and smudges on the scanned image. An alcohol-based glass or lens cleaner works well for removing all spots without leaving behind any streaks. Apply the cleaner to a lint-free cloth reserved specifically for this use, then wipe down the scanner glass quickly before the cleaner evaporates from the cloth. Repeat until the glass is perfectly clean. This should be done at the end of each business day, as well as throughout the day as needed. Remove dust from inside the glass Sometimes dust will build up on the inside of the glass due to the static inside the machine. This is especially true if your scanner has an integrated printer or scan feeder, since paper dust can be an issue. Open the scanner top as indicated for your model (usually the top will lift for access). Then, use your glass cleaner to carefully wipe down the inside of the glass, taking care not to get alcohol on any other parts inside the scanner. You can then wipe down the glass with an anti-static pad to cut down on dust buildup. This task is required daily in heavily used scanners or as needed for those that are only lightly utilized. Check the feeder assembly If your scanner feeds paper through for printing or scanning, then you need to make sure the rollers are working properly. With the scanner open, check for any unnecessary paper dust or torn pieces of paper in the rollers. Remove these by hand or blow them out carefully with canned air. Wipe down the entire roller with a static-free cloth to remove any remaining paper residue. This only needs done weekly or if the scanner begins to experience paper jamming. If your scanner is experiencing other problems, contact a scanner and copier supplier for more help in properly maintaining this necessary piece of office...

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How To Avoid Common Cloud Services Security Mistakes

Posted by on Sep 15, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Cloud services have expanded the abilities of computer users in an undeniable way. They are now required in our society. But there are some mistakes that people commonly make when trying to navigate these services. Here are a few examples of mistakes people make in keeping data secure in the cloud, including options for making sure you don’t do the same. Failing to Read the Service Agreement There’s no doubt that this can be a lot of words and trying to read. But it really does make a difference to at least skim over the agreement before considering a cloud service provider in order to make sure there’s nothing that you don’t expect. You will likely be glad that you did so later when there are any questions about security for that service. This sort of thing does happen. Being Lazy About Passwords Sure, coming up with passwords can be a hassle. It’s not just coming up with them initially, it’s also remembering them apart from one another in the long term. Plus, on top of that, you also have to remember to change them every once in a while. It’s understandable to be frustrated. But in a world that’s becoming increasingly digitized, password security is now essential. This is especially the case when it comes to cloud services since those passwords often lead to a wealth of information about you. Making sure your passwords are secure will help you feel more secure in the long run. Not Considering Encryption As secure as you can make your passwords, you’ll still be a lot more secure if you use encryption on files you want to store before uploading them to the cloud. That way, you’re not completely and totally reliant on the security of the cloud company. You put some of this control back into your own hands. There are a number of different ways you can do this. An example is archive software like B1 Free Archiver. You can also use TrueCrypt encryption or any number of other options. Ideally, you should just memorize the password and not write it down anywhere, because that will ensure that there are never any mistakes or vulnerabilities. Only someone with the password—in this case, yourself—will be able to access the cloud files, no matter what mistakes you make with passwords or any other potential issues. It’s important to have options. The more levels of protection you have for your cloud files, the better. Contact a company like New York IT Service Inc. for more...

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3 Tips To Make Data Easier To Understand At Employee Meetings

Posted by on Aug 15, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Hosting employee meetings and showing your employees the real numbers about how your business is doing can be helpful in bringing the team together and getting everyone focused on the same goals. However, it can be easy for employees to “zone out” and not really understand what they are hearing or looking at when the numbers get too complicated. Luckily, there are ways that you can make data easier to understand at employee meetings so that everyone is on the same page. 1. Break it Up Don’t offer too many statistics at one time — it can be too easy for the numbers to run together and become confusing for your employees, and it can make for a really boring meeting, too. Instead, try breaking up bigger chunks of information into smaller statistics, and weave these numbers in in-between other data. For example, on a PowerPoint presentation, you might only want to show statistics every few slides, with bullet points and other easy-to-digest information in-between. This can help prevent a data overload. 2. Use Visually Appealing Charts and Graphs Don’t just spout out too many numbers; instead, use visually appealing charts and graphs to make numbers easier for employees to understand. You can use research project data visualization software to create attractive pie charts, graphs and more that are easy to look at and easy to understand. Not only can this software make the numbers easier for your employees to understand, but it can make data easier for you to understand, too. 3. Send Employees Off With Their Own Copy Even if all of the information is shared in a meeting, it can be helpful to send employees off with their own copy of the numbers. Then, they can look over them later if there is something that they missed, and they’ll have a document to refer to if they forget something. You can hand out printed sheets, but if you are concerned about waste, sending this information to everyone in a group email can work just fine, too. The truth is that sharing statistics and numbers with your employees is important if you want to keep them focused on performance and if you want to give them an idea of how your team is doing. However, if you’re worried that these numbers might be a bit confusing, overwhelming or downright boring, following these tips can help make them a whole lot easier to understand. This can make for better employee meetings all...

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Three Tips for Getting the Most From Your Home’s Security System

Posted by on Jul 15, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Ensuring that your home is as safe as possible is a critical task. Yet, you may not have the experience of owning one of these systems, which can make it difficult for you to be informed about residential security systems. To help you be better prepared to decide if one of these systems will be right for your home’s needs, it might be beneficial to use the following security-system tips to ensure you get the most from this investment in your house. Opt for a System That Is Monitored It can be tempting for a homeowner to opt for the cheapest security system available. While this may save some money in the short term, it can compromise the overall performance of your home security. Monitored security systems will typically have a higher initial cost, and they will require a monthly fee. However, these systems will allow the monitoring company to alert the police or fire department of any unsafe situations, which may help to limit the damage to the property by ensuring that there is a prompt response. Install a Backup Battery In order to function, your security system will need a stable source of electricity. However, power outages can be a common problem that may result in your system failing to function. In making sure that your security system is able to function during these outages, you should make it a point to install a battery backup for your security system. These batteries will activate when a power outage is detected, which will ensure that your security system continues to function. Once the power is restored, the battery will recharge itself. The size of the battery that your system needs will vary based on the energy needs of the security system. For this reason, you should consult with a security-system installation professional because they will be able to quickly determine the energy needs of the system so that you can choose the perfect battery backup for your home’s security system. Have the Alarm System Serviced and Calibrated Once the alarm system has been installed, some homeowners may make the mistake of failing to properly maintain it. A poorly maintained alarm system can experience a number of performance-compromising issues. For example, the sensors may not be properly calibrated, which can make them more likely to issue a false alarm. To ensure that your security system works as efficiently as possible, you should make sure to have the alarm system professionally serviced each year. These service visits will allow the alarm system’s sensors to be tested and calibrated. While this may seem inconvenient, it can be essential for ensuring that your security system is able to effectively keep the house safe. If you would like to know more about home security, check it out by visiting the sites and stores of various...

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Common Questions About Dedicated IP Addresses Answered

Posted by on Jun 7, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Meeting the technological needs of a growing company can be a challenging task for business owners. This is especially true for those that have a limited background in technology. In particular, internet networking is a critical area for many businesses. However, internet networking requires the use of internet protocol addresses, and if you are unfamiliar with this technology, you might benefit from having the following questions about IP addresses answered.    What Is The Purpose Of Having A Dedicated IP Address? When your computer connects to the internet, it is assigned a number that serves as its identifier. In order for another computer to communicate with yours, it will need to know your computer’s IP address to connect to it. Unfortunately, internet service providers only assign temporary addresses. For applications and networks, a changing IP address can be unacceptable because it can make it impossible for other computers to know where to find the server on the internet. By investing in a dedicated IP address, you can ensure that the applications that drive your company are always able to find your server. Is A Dedicated IP Address Safe? The fear of hackers and other criminals is very real, and you may be concerned about the safety of dedicated IP addresses. However, you should be relieved to learn that it is possible to configure your network to use encryption over these connections, and you can install a firewall on your server to further control the types of connections your server will accept. While these steps may seem inconvenient, they are essential for protecting any network that is connected to the internet and do not reflect a particular weakness of using a dedicated IP address. If your company does not have a network security employee on staff, it is possible to hire consultants to review your current configuration and provide recommendations for enhancing your security.    What If You Do Not Want To Buy This Address? There is a limited number of IP addresses available, which means that they can be rather expensive to buy. For small and medium-sized companies, this expense can prove prohibitive. However, there are options available to help companies have access to dedicated IP addresses without having to actually buy them. This is done through leasing agreements. When leasing an IP address, you will pay a monthly, quarterly or yearly fee for control of the address. Additionally, there may be bandwidth limitations, which may require paying an additional fee to lift. Contact a local broker, such as one...

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When Seeking Telecommunications Vendors, What Should You Include In Your Request For Proposals?

Posted by on Apr 29, 2016 in Uncategorized |

If you are looking for an assessment and a suitable update to your company’s telecommunications system, putting out a request for proposals (commonly referred to as a RFP) can help you to assemble a group of vendors that are eager to provide you with solutions. However, in order to attract the right vendors and encourage proposals you can use, it’s important to include the following things in your RFP. Your Company’s Goals and Terms When you have specific company goals in mind and include those goals in your RFP, you deter proposals from those who cannot do the job. For instance, if your phone system needs to be modernized because you have older phones, companies who no longer offer landline phone assistance will not bother to submit a proposal. Including specific goals and tasks you want to see completed also allows vendors to include information in their proposals that can address your company’s specific needs instead of only providing a mere overview. You must also think about the terms and conditions you want to set for the vendor that is finally awarded the job.  For example, if you want a vendor who will overhaul your email system, are you okay with having a subcontractor of their choice step in to perform that aspect of the work? If you are updating your telephones, do you prefer a specific brand? Setting terms and conditions that you plan to observe can give different vendors the opportunity to back out if they cannot or aren’t willing to meet all of the terms you have in mind. Contact Information for One Person To make sure that all proposals are considered, it is vital to include contact information for one “point person” in your company that all the vendors will deal with. One entire department might be ultimately responsible for selecting the vendor your company will use, but if vendors are giving proposals to any number of people, proposals might become lost or misplaced. To avoid confusion, make sure that anyone responding to your RFP knows that there is a specific person to address and send materials to. When you use the suggestions in this article, you may find that you get proposals that are well-suited to your company’s telecommunications needs. For even more help with this situation, it may be a smart idea to enlist the help of a telecommunications consultant that can help you craft your RFP and assist you in choosing among the responses. Contact a business, such as Blue Stream Communications, for more...

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Success With Dating Apps: 3 Ways To Make Your Profile Stand Out

Posted by on Mar 15, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Finding love online or your next relationship on your phone is not as far-fetched of an idea anymore with so many dating apps popping up like daisies. With 9% of American adults having already used and tried a mobile dating app, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t give it a try. With so many other profiles out there, here are 3 ways you can make your profile stand out. Use an “Action” Photograph of Yourself Let’s face it. Other people who are using the same app will want to have a good idea of how you look before they decide whether or not they are interested in sending you a message. If you want your profile to stand out, don’t put up a stock image or a photograph that hides your face. On the same note, a selfie can also be rather boring. Make your profile picture speak for itself by choosing a photograph of yourself immersed in a hobby you enjoy. For example, if you like to play the guitar, choose a photograph where you are pouring your heart and soul out into the music. A good photograph will not only clearly show others how you look, but will also give them a good idea of what you like to do in your spare time. Include Your Hobbies and Interests Your profile picture should give other users a sense of what you’re like, but it doesn’t give them the full picture. Almost all mobile dating apps will have an “about me” section where you can write anything you want. Don’t waste this space and leave it blank. You definitely want to fill it up by listing your hobbies and interests. You might even want to include other quirky personal information or details about yourself, like how much you love superheroes or how you won the national swimming competition last year. The goal is to provide enough information that someone else can relate to you. Don’t forget to use emoticons to lighten up the mood. If you’re a funny person, feel free to add a joke somewhere in there as well. Be Upfront with What You’re Looking For Not everyone using a mobile dating app is looking for the same thing. Some users are looking to find their true love whereas others might be looking for just a casual hook-up. You definitely don’t want to give anyone the wrong impression of what you’re looking for, so be upfront with what you want. In fact, don’t hesitate to spell what type of relationship you’re looking for loud and clear in your “about me” section. Conclusion Mobile dating apps are able to connect hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of Americans with one another. With so many people using mobile dating apps nowadays, there’s a good chance that you’ll find who you’re looking for on there. Don’t hesitate to create a profile. If you ever feel uncomfortable, you can simply delete the entire dating app from your phone....

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Two Frequently Asked Questions About Using Remote Computer Repair Services

Posted by on Jan 25, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Computer problems can cause major disruptions to your daily life, and they can lead to the loss of data and hardware damage. Unfortunately, you may not have much experience with addressing these problems, which can make you poorly equipped to handle this type of issue. Luckily, there are remote computer repair services that may be able to help you quickly restore your computer’s functionality. If you have never used these services in the past, having the following couple of answers might help you to make an informed decision when deciding whether to use these services. How Do Remote Computer Repair Services Work? When you use these services, a trained technician will remotely access your computer in order to determine the cause of the problem that you are experiencing. While they are connected to your computer, they will have full administrator control. Once the problem has been identified, the technician will inform you of the problem and the steps needed to correct it. You will have to give permission for any changes made to the computer, and while the technician will explain any consequences of the repair, you should make sure to ask any questions you have before agreeing so that you are not taken by surprise if there is data lost. How Can You Prevent Unauthorized Access Of Your Computer? You may be concerned about giving another person so much control over your computer. While these individuals are professionals that will not compromise your security, you should be relieved to learn that there are additional steps you can take to help ensure that any privacy or security concerns you have are addressed. Before these individuals can access your computer, they will need to be given permission and the password for the computer. At the end of the session, you can simply change the password to prevent future access. Also, you should make sure to have a strong antivirus program with robust firewall support. This will help prevent unauthorized computers from accessing yours. Remote computer repair services can be an excellent option for having many software issues quickly addressed by trained professionals. However, it is common for people to be unfamiliar with these services, which can make them unsure of whether or not they should use them. By making sure that you understand how these remote repair services work along with the steps you can take to stop unauthorized access of your machine in the future will help you to better appreciate this...

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How To Determine If Your Dog Is Pregnant

Posted by on Dec 2, 2015 in Uncategorized |

Whether you’re attempting to breed your dog with another dog or your dog simply hasn’t been spayed yet, it’s important to know how to determine if your dog is pregnant. There are a few ways to help determine if your dog is pregnant at home, as well as at the vet’s office; this guide will explain how to examine your dog and what the vet may do to check your dog out. When You Can’t Tell If your dog has mated, or you suspect that she’s mated, it will be a while before you can find out if she’s pregnant. Don’t be surprised if there aren’t any significant changes in her behavior or appearance for the first few weeks after mating. For the first three weeks after mating, even a veterinarian won’t be able to determine whether a dog has become pregnant. However, taking your dog to a vet after about 4 weeks is your best bet to know for sure. Vets can use an ultrasound machine to look for fetuses and find out for sure if your dog is pregnant. Initial Changes After the first few weeks, dogs who become pregnant go through some initial bodily changes as their bodies become ready to get puppies through the gestational period and the rearing period afterwards. Dogs who are pregnant may experience a reduced or increased appetite, and their nipples will become ready for nursing by becoming more pronounced and changing from gray to pink. Palpation At Home While vets have the experience to more easily detect if your dog is pregnant, you can attempt to palpate her yourself to see if she’s pregnant. This step works the best during and directly after the 4-week mark of pregnancy, but waiting much longer than that can make it more difficult, so don’t delay. At this phase, puppies will feel no larger than walnuts; place your thumb and forefinger over the uterus and gently palpate your dog to look for any kind of walnut-shaped swelling. If you can’t tell, go to a vet instead of trying to palpate your dog more aggressively. You could end up harming the puppies or your dog, and a vet can show you exactly how to perform a palpation. The Most Reliable Way Seeing your vet is the most reliable way to find out if your dog is pregnant, and an ultrasound is the safest way to do it. Ultrasounds don’t expose your dog to any kind of radiation or physical manipulation, and can quickly show on a live feed whether your dog has puppies in her womb. If you intend for your dog to rear puppies, you should work with a vet to monitor the health of both the mother and the puppies. If you determine that your dog is pregnant at home, make an appointment with your vet to make sure that your dog is healthy enough to carry the puppies to term and care for her general...

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Tips For Better Data Center Maintenance

Posted by on Sep 22, 2015 in Uncategorized |

Keeping everything working smoothly in your small business’s data center room is a must. This room houses both the expensive hardware and the electronic files that allow your business to run smoothly. The following tips can help you avoid issues with your data center, no matter how large or how small it is. Tip #1: Temperature Management A room filled with computers, servers, and other tech equipment is going to naturally be a warm and stuffy place unless you make the effort to manage the temperature and air flow. Stagnant air can lead to dust, which stresses tech equipment. Warm temperatures are also hard on electronics. You will need to make sure that the room is on its own cooling system so you can provide more cooling and air flow than you do in the rest of the building. This system should also include filters in all air vents so that dust is kept at a minimum. Tip #2: Consider Dividers Hardware cabinets are designed to allow optimum air flow around the electronics while still providing protection from outside damage and dust. You can use shelf dividers that allow you to stack equipment without impeding air flow, which helps you maximize the space in a small data center. Some cabinets and dividers are designed to work with the cooling system in the room, so they will help shunt warm air away from servers and computers while allowing cool air to take its place. Tip #3: Avoid Overcrowding As stated previously, air flow is king. For this reason, you don’t want to overcrowd your data center. Make sure that the equipment is spaced correctly to allow for sufficient air flow and to prevent overheating. Working with a data center maintenance company can be a major help here – they can help maximize the use of a minimal amount of equipment, and then arrange it in such a way so that your current cooling and air flow room systems are sufficient. Tip #4: Update Responsibly Finally, what goes on in the equipment is just as important as what goes on around it. Never set up your systems to update automatically. Not all updates are fully tested before they are sent out, or an update may destroy your necessary data if it isn’t installed manually. If possible, hire a dedicated IT professional to maintain the system and manually inspect and install the updates. If this isn’t possible, consider contracting with an outside management company to handle these...

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