By Katie Smith
We’re constantly on the lookout for simple ways to make your life easier using technology. One way that few people utilize is right there within Microsoft Outlook: the “To-Do Bar.” The To-Do Bar is the panel on the right side of Outlook that shows you upcoming appointments, your calendar, and your unified task list. The task list contains:
Flagged messages that require a response
Contacts you need to call (flagged)
Tasks that come up spontaneously
We hear questions like this frequently when talking with people who want to operate at the highest level in their business. So I sat down with Dan Thompson, Manager of Product Development at Claris Networks, to pick his brain.
“Traditionally, when the cloud first came out, a user had to have a developer on hand to write special programs that live in the cloud. Now, that is not necessary. The user can take any application today, run it through Citrix and it will work. It may not be the optimum performance but it will get the job done.
Claris team members typically stick around for a long time, so when someone does head on to another green pasture, it’s a big deal. Brian Strong has been a part of our family for a long time, and this month is leaving Claris to start a business of his own. He is now CEO of Vendor Registry, a web-based software startup company. And (like any good, supportive family), we’re celebrating his success and encouraging his passion…even though it means we don’t get to hang out with him as much.
Brian came to Claris in 2005 after an interesting history selling salvaged train materials. “It was funny to go from selling one of the country’s oldest technologies to one of its most advanced.” His quiet charisma and genuine interest in others helped develop Claris into one of the country’s premier cloud computing and IT services company.
-By Philip Icuss
Analysts are expecting lackluster performance from Windows 8, Microsoft’s next operating system. In turn, Windows stock is expected to drop some now and when the system launches in October or November of this year.
Windows 8 is potentially Microsoft’s last attempt to squeeze back into a computing market that is changing and in which it is becoming increasingly irrelevant. Apple and Android dominate the mobile sphere, and Windows 8 is Microsoft’s desperate attempt to join the party.
Ironically, a prominent reason many small and medium-sized business are joining the cloud is the same reason many are hesitant to: security. A common myth is that as a company transitions to a cloud solution, they take a hit in the security of their data assets. In fact, the opposite is true. It’s a simple economies of scale argument: a specialized IT provider has more resources to devote to security than a small business. Instead of a single IT guy/Jack-of-all-trades-master-of-none, your business receives a team of masters.
A September article
in the Wall Street Journal points to other reasons for the transition. “Basic security tasks that often don't get done at a small enterprise—updating antivirus programs or applying patches to software—are usually part of the plain-vanilla package in the cloud.”