Planning on using Cloud Technology? Check out this  
Cloud technology is well worth adopting to boost your business. It eliminates costly physical storage space for your data, frees up your document movement and allows you keep all your interested parties in the data loop with no delays.
It also allows you to stay flexible, supporting a more mobile workforce, while automatic software updates make sure you are never lagging behind. It's also more sustainable, cutting down on your usage of consumables such as paper and toner, which is good news for the environment and your budget.
There are, however, certain things you have to keep in mind before you commit completely to cloud services. Here are three all-important tips to follow.
You still have to back up
Regardless of what kind of company you run and what kind of data you are storing, it must be backed up and backed up again. Cloud services are reliable but that does not make them infallible. Not only should you be backing up your data as often as possible, you should be testing your back ups too.
In terms of back up locations, ensure that these are stored in different locations than the data source.
Your web server will go down one day
Do not assume your web server will never fail you. In fact, keep in mind that it is an inevitability of running an IT network that it will go down and probably more than once. It's never a good thing when this happens but it can be a somewhat less debilitating and disastrous thing if you have planned for the worst ahead of time.
Use a number of different data locations (known as availability zones) and even the worst server failure will not set you too far back. The more regions your information is saved in the better.
Double up on cloud services
Obviously this will depend on what you can afford, but it's a very good plan to add more than one cloud provider to your infrastructure. This means even more tools to help you regain your data if one service goes down.
Bill Gates Quotes about technology and business  
For anybody that wants to know about how technology can be turned into business and how technology can power business, there is one man you simply have to listen too: Bill Gates. The chairman of Microsoft not only redefined technology in his incredible career but also did more to bring hardware and software into the business mainstream.
Here are a few of his most telling, wise and intelligent quotes.
Technology is just a tool. In terms of getting the kids working together and motivating them, the teacher is the most important.
The first rule of any technology used in a business is that automation applied to an efficient operation will magnify the efficiency. The second is that automation applied to an inefficient operation will magnify the inefficiency.
I think it's fair to say that personal computers have become the most empowering tool we've ever created. They're tools of communication, they're tools of creativity, and they can be shaped by their user.
At Microsoft there are lots of brilliant ideas but the image is that they all come from the top - I'm afraid that's not quite right.
Information technology and business are becoming inextricably interwoven. I don't think anybody can talk meaningfully about one without the talking about the other.
Intellectual property has the shelf life of a banana.
People always fear change. People feared electricity when it was invented, didn't they? People feared coal, they feared gas-powered engines... There will always be ignorance, and ignorance leads to fear. But with time, people will come to accept their silicon masters.
The Internet is becoming the town square for the global village of tomorrow.
This is a fantastic time to be entering the business world, because business is going to change more in the next 10 years than it has in the last 50.
Whether it's Google or Apple or free software, we've got some fantastic competitors and it keeps us on our toes.
There are people who don't like capitalism, and people who don't like PCs. But there's no-one who likes the PC who doesn't like Microsoft.
The advance of technology is based on making it fit in so that you don't really even notice it, so it's part of everyday life.
How does 3D printing work?  

The dominant story of this year's technology headlines has, undoubtedly, been the rise of 3D printing to the public conscience. From the speeches of Barack Obama to the rantings of the web's least popular tech blogs, everybody has been talking about it. Yet, for many, many people, the question of what exactly it is and how it actually works remains unanswered.
3D printing, also known as additive manufacturing, is a process of creating objects, in which layers of material are placed on top of one another until the item is complete. This differs from the traditional subtractive modes of manufacturing, in which a large piece of material is whittled down into the desired shape.
To achieve this, 3D printers extrude filament through a nozzle above a heated building platform below. The movement of the nozzle and pace at which the filament is extruded is controlled by a Computer Aided Design file of the intended object.
So, if you want to print a cup, for example, you would first create design for your cup on a CAD programme then save it as an STL file and send it to your 3D printer. The printer would then manufacture it in a series of passes over the platform, one layer at a time.
The possibilities of this process are endless. So far, everything from machine components to furniture to clothes to guns to medical items have come out of 3D printers. The upside of the process is customisability – you can literally make everything to your specifications. Also there is speed and, in some cases, cost. For example, prosthetic eyes for patients traditionally take weeks to create and come at a cost of around 3000 pounds. With 3D printing they can be made in about an hour for around 150 pounds.
On the other hand, however, there are some downsides. Firstly, it is not exactly sustainable. None of the main filaments being used in consumer 3D printing are particularly environmentally friendly. Secondly, it is far from perfected. While the day may come where everybody in the country is printing off their own products at home on a 3D printer, that will not happen until the process becomes faster and more user friendly.
So, while 3D printing may be the future, it is not quite the present just yet.

How to stay secure when online  
Whether you run a large business or are a personal user, securing your hardware and online platforms should be a huge priority. In an age where access to somebody's online profile could lead to major identity theft, it is of paramount performance that you take this issue seriously. Here are a few tips on adding muscle to the safety of your online data.
Take your password seriously
We have all heard the advice regarding passwords: it should include letters and numbers, it should not contain any clear English words, it should be longer than 6 characters and it should be different for every single one of your online profiles. The big question is how do you satisfy all of those criteria and still come up with passwords that you can remember every time you log on to a system.
One good tip is to think of a famous phrase (say, your favourite line from a movie) and reduce it to the first letter of each word before adding a couple of memorable numbers at the end (perhaps a loved one's birthday). This will make no sense as a sentence but will be easy to remember for you.
Look out for dodgy online shops
While most online sales platforms are trustworthy, there are plenty that are not. Spotting a dodgy shop takes a bit of attention but there are some tell-tale signs for which you should look out. Any site that only accepts cash, cheque or virtual payments are almost certainly not to be trusted. You are much safer paying by credit card.
Also, look for a physical address and contact details for those that run the site.
Avoid bogus security companies
Be wary of any ‘security expert' that contacts you unsolicited to tell you have a virus on your computer. In reality, this will be a company asking you to pay them a fee to eliminate a virus you do not have. They are working off a list and, somehow, you have made it on. Ignore them completely and do not download anything that they have to offer.
Starting a new business? Here's some technol...  
Find out what you need
The first step when you open up a new company and start sourcing technology is to find out what you need. Simple, right? Not always. Technology changes rapidly and the needs of your company can change not just week to week but day to day. Get more than one expert opinion on the type and quality of hardware and software required to get you off the ground. Plus, do not try to cut corners when it comes to buying the technology either. It pays to invest in the top of the line; it costs to pick up the cheapest kit.
Pay attention to your website
The days of a basic website with a phone number, a few images and a contact us page are dead and gone. Nowadays, your website will be as crucial as point of contact as your main location. Ensure that it is visually impressive, easy to navigate, informative, friendly and that is comes with an effective data capture form. Invest in a web-team if you don't have the ability to do it yourself.
Take advantage of the cloud
Whether you like it or not, you are about to open a business in the era of Big Data. 90% of the world's data was created in the last 10 years and this figure will be bigger 10 years from now. You simply have to have all the tools you possibly can get to control and use this data to your advantage. Do not drown in a sea of information. Utilise cloud storage to back up all that crucial company info.
Get mobile
These days, every customer expects any product or service they buy to be flexible and easy to use. Mobile working is a big part of how you can provide it. To keep up with the pace, kit your workforce with tablets and Smartphones. This way everybody stays in the data loop at all times.
Security, security, security
Is there anything more important these days then the safety of your information? Adopt a strong password policy throughout your whole workforce, ensure your information is backed up and install the most airtight security solutions to your hardware.
Surprising facts about technology  

If you feel your eyes getting heavy next time you are staring at the computer monitor then that's because they are being put under more than twice the strain as usual. You blink roughly 7 times a minute while working on a laptop, PC or tablet, while the normal rate is 20 blinks per minute.
If your fingers are getting tired at the same time, that's probably because your typing. The average typist's fingers travel 12.6 miles every day.
We all know Apple like to make the inside of their hardware as beautiful as possible. If you crack open the original Macintosh, released in 1982, you will find 47 autographs from the Mac division of the company.
The first ever computer mouse was made from wood by Doug Engelbert all the way back in 1962.
We all know the web is getting bigger and bigger, but did you know that more than one million domain names are registered every single month.
The first ever banner ad was placed in 1994. Now over 5.3 trillion of these ads were placed online in the US alone last year. Typically, an internet user will see about 1,707 of these ads every month, though click through rates stand at just 0.1%. Plus, it's only a few people doing the clicking: 85% of all banner clicks are done by the same 8% of internet users. It's also worth noting that banner ads don't really get much sympathy, as just 15% of people trust them to be advertising what they claim to be advertising.
Technology is now a huge part of how human relationships both begin and end. 40 million of the 50 million single people in the United States have tried online dating at some point, while one in eight of all the marriages that began last year began online.
While you might assume the popular QWERTY keyboard is the most efficient way to type, the DVORAK keyboard has proven to be twenty times quicker on average. This is due to the fact that QWERTY was designed with typewriters in mind, while the DVORAK model was meant for the modern, computer based typist.

Technology innovations that will help your busines  
With all the technological innovations that come down the pipeline these days, it's no wonder so many business people are confused as to which they should adopt and which they should avoid. This guide will highlight three excellent recently released pieces of technology that can really add something to your company's set-up.
The Wall Street Scanner
Considering the sheer speed with which data moves in the modern business world, any app, device or software that helps you keep in touch with crucial information as it becomes available is a must-get for the modern company. The Wall Street Scanner is an iPhone app that keeps you and your office connected to the latest economic happenings, regardless of where you are located.
By scanning social networks, tracking corporate sites and checking the stock market minute by minute, this app delivers simple, logically laid out graphs and forecasts regarding all the latest stock trends. This is one of the best ways to get a simple reading of today's economic climate.
The last thing you want to worry about as a company owner or office administrator is new technology that ends up slowing you down. What you are looking for is technology that simplifies what you do, without sacrificing any productivity. Connected HQ is a great example of that latter concept in action.
An intuitive, logically laid out dashboard interface, this brings together all your social media onto a single space. For just $10 per month, you get a brilliantly simplified gateway to your email, Twitter, Facebook and Linkedin profiles, plus whatever other profiles you utilise to boost your business. Perfect for the company that does not have time to mess around, logging in and out of platforms.
It's likely you are already signed up for a service that allows you to keep all your files on a cloud-based platform. Soonr does this too, but comes with the advantage of being optimised for workgroup projects.
If your business runs on collaboration, then Soonr will be ideal. It configures alerts so all the team is kept in the data loop at all times, while projects can easily be assigned across your workforce from a single, centralised space.
Three technologies that might change the world  
The utterly unprecedented leaps forward in technology that have made the last five years so exciting will almost certainly continue for many years to come. Every week it appears a new story hits the headlines, announcing the latest mind-bending breakthrough that will change planet earth as we know it. Though it is difficult to predict which of these will actually make good on the praise, here are three of our favourites from recent times.
Leap Motion
Dragging desktop technology into the future is Leap Motion – a system that allows the user to control what's on their screen by hand, without touching a controller or touching the monitor. The user merely moves their hands above the motion sensor, sending their commands to the device. It's already being incorporated into many games but Leap Motion also allows you to scroll through the web, zoom into maps or images or sign online documents.
Key to its success is the fact that it is both smoother and more responsive than previous attempts at this kind of technology.
The Driverless Card
Sounds crazy, possibly is crazy but, apparently, it's true. Boffins at Google have developed artificial intelligence that allows cars to be driven without any human input. It works off a system of video cameras and sensors within the vehicle and has already driven 1609 kilometres on its own.
Though the ins-and-outs of the technology are being tightly guarded, Google believes driverless cars will be available to the public within the next decade.
Firefox OS
Mozilla's decision to build a brand new mobile operating system from scratch was a bold but smart move. While iOS and Android worked great individually, they came with their own systems and made cross platform development tricky.
So, Firefox OS and its focus upon openness and user choice makes it an ideal solution. Built upon Gonk, Gaia and Gecko software layers, this is open sourced and carries HTML5 and CSS3. The good news for developers is that they can create and share apps with real simplicity, while the good news for users is that they can customise the interface without the previous blockages.
What you need to know about wearable technology  
Wearable technology is being massively touted as the future for communication, entertainment and personal computing and, certainly, that would seem to follow all recent trends. Since the 1980s, technology has become smaller and smaller and, so, the idea of having all your contacts and communication ability stuck to your body is an obvious next move. Whether it be Google Glasses, the Pebble or the Smart Shirt, all of these items will need to share a number of common principles if they are to be a success and understanding these will be key to understanding this hardware trend.
They all solve a recurring problem
Basically, wearable technology has to be useful. Nobody wants a piece of technology weighing down their wrist or wrapped around their face unless there is a good reason for it. Practicality is everything.
Does not take the wearer out of the world
Many people's first reactions to Google Glasses was appalled shock, with the assumption that any wearer would, essentially, be living inside a computer, never actually interacting with the world around them. In reality, for wearable technology to be a success, it needs to help the wearer interact with the world as opposed to distracting them from it.
Focus on the person
Any truly popular wearable technology will have to be human-centric, not machine-focused. Rather than hardware companies taking a piece of technology and thinking ‘how can we get people to use this?' it must begin with a human requirement that makes researchers think ‘how can technology address this?'
Solve more problems than it creates
Of course, there are going to be some issues with wearable technologies. Google Glasses poses the obvious one: does anybody with perfect vision really want to wear glasses? The answer is only positive if the glasses bring more advantages to the table than disadvantages.
Take advantage of existing behaviour
What it will all come down to is how much these devices feel like natural extensions of normal human behaviour as opposed to catalysts for new behaviour. In reality, they should not change the wearer's behaviour much at all, just make doing the things they already do either easier or more enjoyable.
Your guide to consumer 3D printer filament  
3D printing has never been far from the tech headlines this year. If you want to get involved with the additive manufacturing revolution, you will have to learn a few things about the process. One of the most important things to understand is the difference between different types of filament.
This is the material that runs through the nozzle and forms the object on the building platform below. The consumer level machines generally specialise in two types of filaments: ABS and PLA. Both of these materials have their own advantages and disadvantages and are suited to different things and knowing about this will be crucial to getting your 3D objects printed properly.
Also known as Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene, ABS is a petroleum based material that is perfect for durable, tough objects. The cheaper of the two filaments, its flame resistant toughness makes it a great choice for protective clothing, pipes, appliances and car or machine parts. Objects can be sanded down post print, so getting a nice smooth finish is possible.
ABS does, however, come with certain issues. First off, it doesn't smell great while being extruded so you will need a well ventilated area to work in. It's toxic too, so can't used for any kind of food container. It doesn't biodegrade either, though certain machines are being developed that might allow you to recycle old ABS objects.
Polylactic Acid or PLA is made from corn starch, sugar cane, tapioca roots and potato starch. This means it comes with a pleasant smell, biodegrades and can be used for food packaging or utensils. Yet it is also somewhat brittle when cooled and takes a long period of time to cool down.
This means using it for machine components that will be put under a heavy amount of pressure or in a high temperature is not really possible. Also, sanding it down post printing is not really possible.
It is, however, good for medical implants as it degrades eventually within the body. Disposable clothing or any hygiene related products is also printable with PLA.
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