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Category Archives: Small Business Advice

Browser Madness!

UNTIL RECENTLY, SURFING THE INTERNET MEANT TYPING in cryptic commands and wading through screens of monotonous text. The advent of the World Wide Web means the Net is no longer quite so frustrating and incomprehensible. With navigation as easy as pointing and clicking your mouse, you’ll find the Web’s individual electronic pages are filled with text, graphics, and even snazzy videos and sound files for downloading. Imagine taking a guided tour of the White House, searching a directory of 800 numbers, or checking your stock portfolio, all using the Web’s visual and intuitive navigation system. That’s how simple the Web is–just click on whatever interests you and you’re immediately transported to places all over the world, no computerese required.

mybrowseThere are two main

Keeping Your Data In Check

ktdicYOU’RE ON THE PHONE WITH A PROSPECTIVE CLIENT. IN the course of a few minutes you learn that she wants to see your brochure, she’d like you to call again in a few weeks, she just got a new e-mail address, and she’s expecting a baby in three months (and can’t wait to take the little tyke to his or her first Detroit Tigers game). A PIM (personal information manager) could leave you scrambling to find places to transcribe this vital information. A contact manager, on the other hand, will simply absorb the details into the client’s record in an instant. The results: a ready-made cover letter to accompany your brochure; a follow-up call you’ll be reminded to make; a record of

Bumps In The Road And The Techies That Help Us

Don’t you absolutely hate it when you are just about once a website and you discover your hard drive clicking? I can’t believe the timing of things in life, sometimes. I was trying to get the site launched before I finished my thesis, but of course I had a massive hard drive crash in my raid array. I truly believe that this is one of those things that really make you think about disasters and how they can happen at any second. A lot of people talk about how you can be hit by a bus one day, and let’s just say that when you have a full on raid failure, is pretty much the technological equivalent of that.

funnyI think probably …

Getting Your Business Smokin’ On The Web

gsotwAs unlikely as it seems, Steve Seiller and his wife, Catherine, aren’t the only folks using the Internet to sell hay for pet rabbits. You can buy a mini-bale from the Web site they run out of their home in the Seattle area, and that scrumptious bundle of grass is a good buy at $3.99, Steve promises. But don’t think Bunny Bytes has no competition. The Seillers know of at least two other online outlets that serve up similar fodder.

All across the Web, businesses like Bunny Bytes are pushing home-business Web sites beyond the usual brochure-ware. Air-Fun Kites  is a family-run operation based in West Chester, Ohio, selling kites that are a whole lot fancier (and pricier) than paper kites of yore;

LAN Building Much Easier Than It Used To Be

lbmeMost people approach the installation of a local area network (LAN) with the same enthusiasm they reserve for IRS audits and root canals. First, there’s all that confusing terminology: Ethernet, 10BaseT, hub, router, and so on. Then there’s the labor: opening the computers to install special cards, running cables all over the place, messing with the operating system to enable its networking capabilities. Pretty daunting stuff.

But no more. Today, new networking solutions and improvements to existing technologies have taken the ability to connect computers out of the hands of brainy geeks and into yours. You might think that setting up a LAN requires a lot of time and expertise, and you’d be right–if the year were 1995. But thanks to a new

Talking Scalability

In the deployment of a web content management system, scalability can be anything from a nonissue to a major concern.

On most corporate intranets, where as many as 1,000 simultaneous hits are rare, a single Web server running a content management application can easily serve the entire intranet. In such a setting, the capacity of the Web content management application is generally a much smaller concern than its stability.

Scalability is a primary concern, however, when a firm deploys content management on a Web site, particularly an e-commerce site. I have seen several cases where sites either crashed completely or selectively lost content because of problems with their content management systems.

There are several steps site managers can take to ensure that systems