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More SMB Tech Opinion

  • Opinion: Vault Brings eDiscovery Tools to Google Apps

    Businesses generate and consume massive amounts of email and instant messaging communications. For many businesses, all of that data has to be preserved, and produced on demand in the event of litigation. Google has introduced Google Apps Vault--a new service for Google Apps for Business customers that promises streamlined data retention and e-discovery.

  • Opinion: How to Start a New Business on the Cheap, Part 2

    Earlier this week I gave you three keys to starting a business on a tiny budget. That first post focused on planning, fundraising, and office space. Now let's look at the second half of the equation: marketing the new venture and operating it on the cheap.

  • Opinion: Cut Down Your Social-Network Notification E-Mails

    Just the other day, Mrs. Hassle-Free PC was bemoaning the flood of notification e-mails she gets from Facebook. "Every time someone mentions me or shares a photo of me, I hear about it in my inbox!"

  • Opinion: Can I Safely Open Suspected Spam?

    C. Corder asked if it's safe to open an email that landed in the spam folder.

  • Opinion: Google Docs Gets Better at Spell-Check

    Bad spelling reflects badly on you. Doesn't matter if it appears in a product brief or a presentation; if you write "it's" when you should have used "its" or accidentally type "loose" in place of "lose," you're going to come off looking, well, not too bright.

  • Opinion: Social Collaboration and the Asynchronous Workplace

    Whether your company is a small shop of just a few intensely hard-working pros or a large venture with hundreds of workers, good communication is critical to your success. And by "good communication," I mean communication that works. With the right collaboration tools and a little operational discipline, you can overcome any communications challenge and get your teams in sync.

  • Opinion: International Travel and Your Laptop

    Shanta Hasan asked me for advice about traveling internationally with a laptop.

  • Opinion: Track Billable Hours (On the Cheap) With TogglDesktop

    Tracking time spent and billable hours doesn't have to be difficult, even if you work for multiple clients and not all of your working time is spent in front of a computer. Toggl (free; $5/month plan offers more features)) is a Web-based time tracking system with a downloadable client for Windows, Mac OS X and Linux as well as mobile applications for Android and iOS.

  • Opinion: We Saw Where You Went: App Traces Workers' Steps Abroad

    Apparently the news that people don't like having their whereabouts known, tracked, and compiled hasn't reached all corners. Over the past year, Google and Apple have come under governmental scrutiny for collecting users' location information, and the topic was hot last weekend at the South By Southwest confab in Austin, Texas.

  • Opinion: Hot Apps and Web Services of SXSW

    Here at SXSW this week I've spotted plenty of buzz-about products and tech, but when it comes to apps and Web services five firms stand out. Offerings from Sonar, Vox.io, Personal, Correlate and BrandYourself.com each impressed me for having just the right mix of relevance and usefulness in my life and offered an innovative approach at solving everyday problems of tech professionals.

  • Opinion: Database System GS-Base Is Easy as a Spreadsheet--And the Price is a Steal

    At $20, GS-Base 9 is very inexpensive and requires virtually no prior database knowledge to use. Furthermore, it uses a number of metaphors and options which should be very familiar to those comfortable with spreadsheets, a fact that makes it useful to a large set of business users who rarely venture away from Excel. Indeed, it shares many of the functions and syntax found in Citadel's inexpensive, but functional, GS-Calc spreadsheet program.

  • Opinion: Lost Smartphone? Don't Plan On Seeing It Again

    You know that sinking feeling in your stomach when you realize you don't know where your smartphone is? Thankfully, every time I have experienced that I have been able to resolve it by simply calling it and following the rings to find out what couch cushion it fell behind. But, what happens when you really lose your smartphone--like leaving it in a taxi, or at a restaurant?

  • Opinion: Polycom's RealPresence Video Conference App Comes to iPhone 4S

    Polycom’s video conferencing and collaboration app for the iPad and Android tablets is now heading to your phone. The RealPresence app is a secure, high-quality HD video collaboration app that lets you meet with your coworkers no matter where you are. The app is now available for the iPhone 4S with other Android Ice Cream Sandwich phones to follow.

  • Opinion: "Do Not Track" Has It Backwards

    Google is doing its part for Internet privacy by adding a Do Not Track feature to its Chrome Web browser. The move is admirable, and Do Not Track may be better than nothing, but why should users have to opt out of having their online actions monitored?

  • Opinion: Giving the Consumer Privacy Bill of Rights Some Teeth

    President Obama unveiled a blueprint for a Consumer Privacy Bill of Rights. The initiative is long overdue, and has been received favorably, but protecting consumer privacy may take more than a framework of principles for companies to voluntarily follow.

  • Opinion: Deliver E-Mail Messages at Scheduled Times with Right Inbox

    I can think of about a dozen instances when it would be useful to send e-mail at a designated time, rather than at the moment you click Send.

  • Opinion: Office for iPad Not Happening? Don't Believe the Naysayers, Claims Site that Leaked Image

    PCWorld's Damon Brown says yesterday's Office for iPad tease by The Daily is probably just hype, and he's in good company -- Microsoft itself said in a recent New York Times story that the purported screenshot was bunkum. But The Daily's tech editor, Peter Ha, has fired back on Twitter, claiming the screenshot's the real deal.

  • Opinion: Open Web Links Right Inside Thunderbird

    Reader Dan subscribes to various e-mail lists, and each e-mail he receives contains multiple Web links. Here's his dilemma:

  • Opinion: Thunderbird Tips: IMAP Subscriptions, Email Replies

    Recently I shared a Thunderbird tip on how to mark a message as read when you reply. See, I'm test-driving Thunderbird as a potential replacement for Microsoft Outlook. It's getting the job done, but I occasionally find myself grumbling about settings that should be easy to find--but aren't.

  • Opinion: Google Privacy Fiasco Lesson: There Is No Privacy

    Google is in some hot water for bypassing privacy controls on the Safari Web browser in iOS devices--and allegedly on Internet Explorer as well--to surreptitiously track users' online activities. While Google deals with the backlash and regulatory scrutiny from the FTC, there is an important lesson to be learned: privacy is dead.



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