Chromebook vs MacBook
This past week Matt Novak posted an article on Gizmodo on, "Why I bought a Chromebook Instead of a Mac." Apparently Matt was a long time Macintosh user that switch to Chromebook because it was cheaper than getting a new MacBook.
Couple of quotes from the article:
"When all was said and done, even the cheapest Mac laptop was going to set me back about $1,300 after taxes and AppleCare. And the siren song of a computer under $200 was calling my name."
Later on he writes...
"I rarely have to edit video and my photo manipulation needs are minimal. So when I walk down to the coffee shop to work, what the hell do I need doing that can't be done on a Chromebook? Nothing is the answer."
Why even bother with a Chromebook? He should have just gotten a Kindle and a Bluetooth keyboard for a lot less than the $200.
Should Apple be Worried?
Apple isn't a bit worried about the "cheaper" laptop trends. Steve Jobs actually address this issue back in 2003 at the closing statements at MacWorld:
These are very challenging times across the whole economy - particularly in our industry.
Our competitors are laying off thousands of people and there is certainly a cause for despair
if you believe that the personal computer is basically something that you spreadsheets and word processes on and HTML terminal for the internet
if that all you think it is then there is cause for despair.
That not what we think.
We think different.
WE believe that the personal computer is undergoing a rapid evolution at the center of our digital lives.
We have never been more excited about this stuff.
We are investing
We are going to innovate through this downturn
like the product you see here today and more coming.
and when this thing turns around, we are going to be in a great place....
Hear him on a recent SoundCloud posting:
In addition, this issue was addressed many years earlier. In 1996, when Network computers were all the rage in Silicon Valley. There was a lot of talk about how some engineers were going to feel about doing their work on the "cheaper computers."
When putting together this post, I was looking for a great quote about it. I can't seem to find it. When I do, I'll be sure to update this post.
The net/net is that the MacBook offers a lot of functionality than the cheaper computers. If your going to depend on the cheaper computers, your not getting the full use of the applications.
Sam Adams Donation Pickup
Sam Adams Brewery supports the local community. Whenever they encounter a worthwhile charitable organization, they will donate some beer to the organization to be used at their charitable event.
If your in charge of the beer donation pickup, here's some general information that will make pickup easier.
Obviously before you go, make sure to have enough room in the vehicle for the boxes. Each box holds 24 bottles of Sam Adams Beer.
Next to the Sam Adams tour center is a business office, and just outside of the office is a small white sign with the following text:
Looking to pick up a beer donation?
Continue to drive around the building past the main entrance and make three left turns. You will see a big red warehouse. Pull into the parking lot and knock on the door next to the loading dock. Someone will be there to help you! The address for the GPS is: 187 Boylston Street, Jamaica Plain MA 02130.
So set your GPS to 187 Boylston Street, Jamaica Plain MA 02130 and not 30 Germania St, Boston MA 02130. ( A number of streets around Sam Adams are one way, make sure to pay attention to where your going as you get closer to the brewery.)
When you arrive at the big red warehouse, you will need to find a spot to park. Park near the far left. (See the map above)
The sign says, "knock on the door next to the loading dock" - problem is that there's two doors next to the loading dock. You should knock on the door to the right, here's a picture of the door. There is a call box next to the door, I decided it didn't hurt to push the 'ring' button.
When the door opens, the person inside will ask for the organization that you are picking up for.
After they verify your organization, you will have to sign two forms, and you keep one for your organization records.
The person that opened the door will help load the cases in your vehicle. They have a dolly that will bring the cases to your car, so you don't have to park too close to the door.
Thanks Sam Adams!
Thank you Sam Adams for your donation! We appreciate your contribution to the community!
Do you ever wonder how much a business invests in new tech, to deliver the most sophisticated image to their customers? How many times, as a consumer, have you visited multiple businesses, and can clearly note the differences between newer office spaces that include the top gadgets, and older, less technologically-driven businesses?
If we stop to consider these differences, we should also consider our buying decisions, and influences on our decision to make a purchase. Generally, if the two businesses both offer similar prices, most will decide to conduct business with the organization featuring the latest technology.
Businesses that feature newer monitors, flat screen televisions, and gadgets that are up to date make an overall better first impression on a potential customer. It lets the buyer know that the businesses cares about its image to the public, and wants to make a good first impression on those visiting their office.
Additionally, newer technology can help to retain customer satisfaction levels. When visiting an office, customers want to engage with tech that makes their lives easier. Using touch-enabled screens to present your product to a consumer allows for ease of use, and sophistication. Additionally, using devices like iPads and tablets can help show your customer that you have an overarching appreciation for staying on top of devices that can help make their experience more pleasant. Plus, who doesn't like to use a nifty iPad from time to time?
Technology can also help to show an organization's level of engagement with the customer. As a business, it's important to show your support for a cause, and become involved in your community. Not only does becoming involved with your community help your image as a small business, but it helps others to become passionate about your business and join with you in supporting causes you believe in.
Additionally, supporting various organizations and groups within your town or city can help you to build community links to your website. Though it may be overlooked, building links to your organization's site can greatly affect your presence online, and can boost your profits in the long run.
Technology can also have many long-term benefits that can have an impact on your organization. With cloud storage and easy sharing with others, customer information contained on devices can be easily shared with others down the road. Technology has proven to be a great source for storing information that can be accessed in the future.
Again, technology can also drive potential customers to conduct business with your organization, because of the sophisticated image it helps you to present. As its always known, word of mouth marketing is one of the best ways that a business can grow. By utilizing the latest technology, you will open the doors for newer customers as your businesses image is discussed among others.
What are some of the best technologies utilized by some of the most successful organizations today?
Balloons at Wegmans
The nearest Wegmans to our house is about 20 minutes away in Westborough, Massachusetts. To put it in perspective, we have to drive by two Stop and Shops just to get to Wegmans. The fact that we are going out of our way to shop at Wegmans should immediately tell you it must be a special place.
We like the food selection and prices are very reasonable. In addition, they have a large well stocked gluten free selection.
My 5 year old daughter likes shopping here because she knows that she gets a special surprise if she is really good while we are at the store.
That's the topic of today's post:
Did you know that you can get a single blow up balloon at Wegmans?
Wegman will actually blow up one balloon any time that you need one. While I am sure other stores offer similar services, the service people at Wegman makes it a pleasant experience. Every time we ask for a balloon they interact with my daughter. They don't grunt or complain about taking time out of their tasks to blow up a single balloon.
Wegmans has a great color selection with matching strings giving my daughter the power to pick a color - kids like having to make their own choices. Sometimes she surprise me and get a pink balloon with a purple string, because that what she felt like doing on that day.
Most times when we go there's nobody at the balloon stand, so we have to push a notification button. Actually, it's my daughter that gets to push the button, she likes to have that responsibility.
Next time you're at Wegmans, ask for the Balloon booth and treat your child with an extra special balloon. Incidental they aren't free, they cost .99 - which is not a bad price to pay for some well behave time.
It gets my daughter to be excited to go shopping and behave herself to get a nice treat.
What works for you?
Utilitech Digital Timer
There's a trick to get the Digital Timer from Utilitech to work. This trick works for the Model #TM-108, but is probably true if you're using any Utilitech Digital Timer.
Key thing to get the timer to work for the first time is to make sure that the timer start time isn't before the current time. Basically, you want to follow the directions and make sure that the start time is in the future.
If you don't do this, when you set the timer you will have to wait 24 hours to make sure that it works.
When I initially set this up, I expected that the outside lights to be working since the start time have passed. For a moment, I thought that the timer was defective. The next day, I reset the timer to the exact time and waited 20 minutes to see the light went on. That's when I realized what happened.
So just remember to set the timer to go on later than the current time.
Pot Luck Food Ideas
Every year we have a company pot luck and celebrate the season by sharing some of our favorite foods with our co-workers.
This year Pot Luck was a huge success because organizers decided to assign categories by company departments. Engineering was responsible for sides and main dish, while other teams had deserts and appetizers etc. This ensured that there was plenty of coverage in different areas. (You don't want the case of everyone bringing pies.)
The dish size people prepare or purchase is big enough for a large family gathering. People will take small portions of your offering. Example: For a company with 100 employees, you should make enough as if your serving for 20 people.
If your looking for some ideas of what to bring to a Pot Luck, here is a list of some of foods that people have brought in the various pot lucks that I have attended in the past:
- 5 layer dip with chips
- Baked Asparagus Fries
- Braised Brussels Sprouts
- Buffalo Chicken Dip with chips
- Cheese plate
- Guacamole, salsa, chips
- Jalapeno Cornbread
- Pumpkin kugel cupcakes
- Pumpkin spice muffins
- Spinach Balls
- Spinach Dip
- Artichoke Dip
- Buffalo Chicken Dip
- Caramelized Onion Dip
- Ecuadorian chicken & rice soup
- Ecuadorian chicken & rice soup
- Some breads
- Spicy pigs in a blanket
- Spinach Dip
- Sweet Potato Pecan Scuffle
- Sweet sweet potatoes
- Blackbottom Cupcakes
- Chai spice mini cupcakes
- Cinnamon Cake
- Ice Cream-filled Cupcakes
- Ginger cookies
- Peanut Butter Lava cookies
- Peanut Butter Lava Cookies
- Pecan Pie
- pumpkin cheesecake
- Pumpkin Pie Cupcakes
- Seasonal Cupcakes
- Toffee caramel cookies
- Toffee chocolate caramel cookies
- Apple Cider
- Mix Soda (Season Favorite)
Don't forget to bring any display dishes or utensils. (Bring along extra in case other's forget!) Make a small sign to display in front of your dish with any special information, such as 'Gluten Free' or 'A favorite from Ireland.'
Children & Elders: Benefits of Relationships
If you have fond memories of frequent visits with your grandparents or even living in the same town as your grandparents, you may one of the lucky few. While many of today's families are multigenerational and live under the same roof, some children don't know their grandparents very well due to long distances or may not have a grandmother or grandfather. Elderly individuals don't need to be biologically related to act as a mentor or a positive influence in a child's life. Many elders act as "honorary" grandparents for children of all ages. If your child doesn't have a close relationship with a grandparent or you want him or her to have more interaction with an older population, contact a nursing home in your local area; many places are more than happy to have visitors of all ages.
Why Intergenerational Relationships Matter
Creating a healthy and strong relationship with someone of a different generation is beneficial for everyone. Some children, who don't have frequent interactions with elders, may be afraid of older individuals. Similarly, elders who don't have regular interaction with younger people may have inaccurate assumptions about younger populations. While intergenerational relationships benefit individuals differently, here are a few benefits based on programs involving youth and elders:
- Increase Understanding of Aging: Interacting with an elderly population helps children understand the aging process (how people slow down or how memories can change).
- Improved Socialization: Children that interact with elders are more likely to have better social skills. Rather than socializing with individuals only within their peer group, they learn how to adapt (such as speaking loud/soft, articulately). They may also exhibit and have a better understanding of manners and overall respect.
- Having Purpose: Both young individuals and the elderly may feel as if they have a purpose as they build their relationship. Children may notice they make an elder smile upon each visit and the elder may see that he or she has made a friend.
- Increasing Wellness: Sadly, in some nursing homes across the country, some elders feel unsafe and are unhappy. Having visitors of all ages can improve moods, which as a result can improve the overall health and wellbeing of a nursing home resident.
What Can You Do?
If you want to participate in creating a healthy relationship with an elder, you don't need to be part of an official organization or class. Consider making holiday cards for elders or plan an activity (such as a game) that could include children and adults. Always call the nursing home ahead of time and communicate with the employees in charge; tell them what activities you have planned. Additionally, once you've created a schedule, stick to the plan as young and old depend on consistency.
Search Google for 'iPhone Screen Cleaner' and see how Google basically nullify Windex's Ad:
Global Organization for Health Improvement
Today I got this awesome spam email. I am guessing spammers are trying to be tricky. My email client easily identified this email as Spam and places it in the correct circular file:
My name is Dr.Susan Patrick. I work with the Global Organization for Health Improvement (GOHI), California LA, USA. We are cordially inviting you to the forth coming global conference on Eradicating Malaria 2015, which will be held from 14th to 18th December 2015 at the Clarence Brown Conference center Located at Cartersville, Atlanta GA, USA.
If you are interested to participate and want to represent your country, you may contact the conference secretariat for more information regarding the conference. You should inform them that you were invited by Dr.Susan Patrick who is affiliated with Lutheran Medical Center and a member of Global Organization for Health Improvement.
The benevolent donors of the Organizing Committee will provide round trip Air tickets to all invited/registered participants. Registered delegates will only be responsible for their hotel booking in Atlanta where the conference will be held. If you are a holder of an international passport that may require visa to enter the United States, You should inform the secretariat as the conference organizing committee is responsible for all registered delegates visa arrangements. You may Contact the Conference secretariat with the address below for detailed information regarding the conference.
The email concludes with some contact information. Sorry Dr. Susan Patrick, I won't be going to your conference. I checked out the conference event calendar and there is nothing scheduled for December. You can let the benevolent donors know of my plans.
Watch out if your downloading anything from Download.com! You may end up changing some browser settings and be downloading some spyware.
I was testing out TotalTerminal application when I saw it on CNet's download.com. I have downloaded files from their site in the past, so I thought it would be safe to download it.
Turns out that you can't just directly download the file. You have to download an installer which will download the file. The installer is where it get's tricky because there's a screen that ask if you want to change your Browsers to Yahoo Search. Well they don't exactly put it that way, they use the term "Search Offer."
What's buried in the Download.com 'Acceptance of Terms' is that you'll also be installing an 'eBay Shopping Assistant,' 'SearchMe' and a 'Domain Error Assistant' browser extension.
What's worst is that you can't copy the 'Acceptance of Terms' text to another file to search for it. Download.com anticipate that you'll just click 'Yes' and not read what your really signing up for.
I would follow the advice of iowacitytechnologyservices.com and not download anything from download.com.