Archive for July 10th, 2012

Choose the correct Network Cabling Installation Company

If you are planning to move your business in a new location or update the data and voice network in the existing facility then it is very necessary to choose and work with the right structured cabling contractor. In case of any business arrangement, you will surely want the best outcome of the business operation. If you want your voice and data network to go for at least four to five years in a good way before another update is required then it is important to choose the right voice and data cabling contractor. You must take some time to learn a little about each and every structured cabling contractor you are starting to evaluate in the area. The most important thing you need to know is the longevity in business of each of the voice and data contractor that means how long each of them has been in the business. If a company is in the business for several years then it is quite natural to say that it is obviously doing something right and you can look after it a little more closely. Though longevity is the good indication of quality work but don’t rely on only this factor, it is also necessary to know about the experience of the owner. You will find out some voice and data cabling contractor that may only a couple of years old but is owned and controlled by some impressive amount of experienced people in the industry.
Get some idea about how each of the structured cabling installation contractor works because it will help you to shorten the list of candidates. The company must start with some sort of introducing measurement of the facility and communication needs for your business, if they don’t then take it as a warning sign. These types of pre-fielding measurements are very essential in order to build up a plan that gets your data and voice network up and operating quickly with lowest disruption in the business function. The measurement will help you to see the way of collecting information of the different structured cabling contractors according to your cabling needs. Some contractors will nod their heads and promise you to stay in touch but that are not your need. You have to give a focused attention on the structured cabling contractors who evaluates physical aspects of the facility, ask questions about your company’s voice and data communications and then carefully listen to their responses.
You always want the best quality voice and data network in the lowest possible price. After identifying the potential structured cabling installation contractors, it is time to invite the reasonable candidates to submit their formal proposal. Make a RFP or Request for Proposal with all the specific questions you want to ask, include the breakdown on the pricing and surely a set a due date for submission. If any proposal comes after the due date then do not accept it. Carefully check all the contents of the proposals given by the contractors, verify all the information for every question, check whether there is a complete breakdown on the costs and other information that will help you to make the decision. Remember that the cheapest price is not always the best choice. Sometimes it is beneficial to spend a little more money if want the best cabling network for your business that will serve well for several years.
David has worked with many wiring and cabling companies, and has experience of working with various types of cable such as Cat6 Cable, Cat5e Patch Cable, network cables etc.

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Can Smartphone Apps Help You Increase Your Fitness Level?

Our smart phones can do many different things these days, but one thing that most people don’t think about is their ability to help you stay fit. In an age when technology appears to be making us more sedentary, there is actually much to praise in the app industry as regards tools for fitness! Here is a list of a few free, or at least very cheap, apps that I highly recommend for you to consider:

1. Garmin Fit: This app is at the number one place for a reason. Garmin Fit allows you to keep track of all the logistics of your workout, such as distance, elevation, heart rate, route traveled, and number of calories you burned in the process. This app then processes that information, allowing you to observe your growth, improvement, and general trends. On top of all that, it helps you choose a good workout playlist. This data is stored at the Garmin Connect Website so that you can review it at any time and scan your development over the course of long periods. Anyone who has struggled with maintaining a long term routine knows how difficult it is to keep up a strong vision for fitness when you don’t keep track of your progress. This app does just that, and more!

2. Get Running (Couch to 5k): Get Running is perfect for those would-be runners who have the desire, but perhaps lack the know how and motivation to lace up the shoes and head out the door. The app acts as a sort of personal running coach and offers a 9-week training program to get you going “from couch to 5k.” Many runners say that the most difficult phase in a runner’s journey is building from zero stamina to being able to run for 30 minutes without stopping. Get Running targets this period of a runner’s journey and has helped numerous people get out on the trail. Get Running also helps you record your progress and even offers to post your newest data on Facebook and Twitter for your friends and relatives to keep up with your journey to becoming a runner.

3. All-In Fitness: I’m pretty excited about this app. What do you think is the main reason people choose not to start working out? It’s actually the fact that they don’t know what to do! This great app takes all the guess work out of starting a routine. With All-In Fitness, your phone will contain 1,000 exercises all featured in HD videos, 100 complete workouts, and input from real personal trainers to offer you the full introduction to fitness straight from your phone! If you are a longtime fitness guru, however, the sheer volume of available exercises is sure to beef up your repertoire and help you keep your body guessing.

4. Strava: Strava is like a social network for your training partners and competitors. We all know that competition makes exercise more fun, and with this app, you can create a virtual record board for your local trail, circuit, or track. You can upload your newest bests, and challenge your friends to step up to the plate! Strava includes multiple metric devises to record your essential information as well, such as: elevation, heart-rate, distance covered, and calories burned.

5. Calorie Counter and Diet Tracker: MyFitnessPal has created a great product that allows you to manage the half of fitness training and weight loss that most people ignore: your diet! Calorie Counter enables you to scan barcodes to download nutritional info, record your recent meals and intake, and keep yourself accountable for what you decide to indulge in. Any exercise system that says you can eat whatever you want is a scam, but that doesn’t mean that you have to spend hours every day crunching numbers and obsessing over calories. This app does it all for you!
Author Bio: Zachary James writes for www.BoxFitUK.com, a boxing gear site for both the boxing and health enthusiast.

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How Twitter can boost your business

There are various ways Twitter can be used for business. It’s a great platform for potential customers to learn about new products and your business. People all over the world can have access to your tweets and interact with your account. It’s a great free tool that can be your business’ publicity and advertisement assistant. Twitter can make your company grow in popularity and success but it all depends on the way it is made use of.

People who are popular, authoritative and influential have more followers on Twitter. By having a high amount of followers, people will respect your opinion more. People’s perception of your company will be highly different if a customer sees you have a thousand followers compared to, say, fifty. The fact of having more followers will make you seem more reliable and attract more attention to your account. What you tweet may grow in impact and validation due to the assumption people have of your account based on its fan base.

A company’s presence on Twitter shows how popular they really are with customers. One of the easiest ways to grow in presence is by having a good profile with a clear picture and a personal description. This allows potential followers to know what your business does. Users can easily identify the company when they see it outside of Twitter and know who they are. This can lead to a sale when a customer goes to a store and chooses your company’s product over a competitor since they are familiar with your brand.

Twitter is especially valuable when launching a new product. Tweets that promote contests or special access of a product can create great publicity. This can lead to more potential sales by users that become invested in tweeting about a product. The product can be a success way before its release based solely on how people are responding to it on Twitter.

Active use of Twitter is vital to keep a company engaged with users. The more people you tweet and have conversations with will assist your growth in contacts and your reach in getting more people to hear you on Twitter. Having conversations with users on the public timeline instead of direct messages allows others to join in. Make your tweets re-tweetable so others can share them with friends. Always re-tweet a user when they mention the company or its products. This shows followers that you are aware of their presence and value their opinions.

In this week’s episode of “The Future of Engagement,” Murray Newlands talks about ways businesses can grow by using Twitter and how to go about growing your Twitter fan base.

Highlights:

  • Gaining more followers on Twitter using simple methods.
  • Interacting with users daily helps a company’s online presence.
  • Businesses can create buzz for products by interacting with followers.

Click on the free white paper here to get some information on how a business can increase their Twitter presence.

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Intel funds next-gen chipmaking, buys into ASML for $4.1 bn

SAN FRANCISCO: Intel Corp will spend more than $4 billion to buy a stake in ASML and bankroll its research into costly next-generation chipmaking technology, a major vote of confidence in the Dutch company that sent its US shares soaring 6 per cent on Monday.

Intel hopes to speed the adoption of the next generation of chip manufacturing processes from ASML by as much as two years. That will require intensive capital investment, but delivers billions of savings in future, analysts said.

ASML, the world’s largest maker of machines that etch circuits onto silicon wafers and a barometer for the chip sector, may want to spread the risk of developing cutting-edge chipmaking equipment, based on 450-millimeter wafer sizes and “extreme-ultraviolet” or EUV lithography.

Intel will acquire an initial 10 per cent stake in its European supplier and add another 5 per cent pending shareholders’ approval, for a total of about $3.1 billion. It also benefits by being able to move on to larger wafer sizes.

“The transition from one wafer size to the next has historically delivered a 30 to 40 per cent reduction in die cost,” Chief Operating Officer Brian Krzanich said in a statement. “The faster we do this, the sooner we can gain the benefit of productivity improvements.”

RBC Capital analyst Doug Freedman estimates Intel can save about $2 billion a year on 450mm processes, versus the current standard of 300mm. Larger silicon wafers lower production costs because more chips can be sliced off them.

Under the agreement, Intel gains no exclusive rights to future ASML products. But Freedman said Intel, as the sector leader, stands to gain if the overall industry benefits.

“I was a little surprised that ASML did not offer exclusivity or preferential access,” Freedman said. But “if in fact they’re lowering the cost of technology in emerging markets, you’re opening markets as well.”

MARKET SLOWING Intel and other chipmakers are grappling with slowing demand as consumers shift to mobile devices, and economic growth in Europe and even emerging markets is weakening. On Monday, Advanced Micro Devices warned its second-quarter revenue may slide 11 per cent, blaming disappointing demand from China and Europe.

A shift to cutting-edge EUV helps also push the natural progression of semiconductor technology advancement known as “Moore’s Law”, which posits that the average number of transistors packed on a chip doubles every 18 months.

The world’s top chipmaker will also help finance $1 billion of research into 450mm and extreme-ultraviolet chipmaking, both cutting-edge technologies that had been expected to emerge in the decade’s second half.

While many semiconductor companies outsource the fabrication of actual chips to third-party “foundries,” Intel is among the last remaining chipmakers that build and operate their own network of multibillion dollar production facilities, or “fabs”.

“If Intel is able to ramp 450mm production ahead of the world’s fabs such as TSMC or Global Foundries et al, it may yet prove that real men have fabs,” said John Jackson from CCS Insight. “There are signs that the global semiconductor fabrication sector is poised to realign.”

Intel is the first major chipmaker to sign up for ASML’s “customer investment” program, under which it hopes to enlist partners to fund expensive research into 450mm wafer technology, a more economical chipmaking process.

Under their agreement, Intel will pay 1.7 billion euros ($2.1 billion) for the initial 10 per cent slice of ASML, and a preliminary 553 million euros for research.

The pact also involves advance orders of next-generation ASML chipmaking gear, strengthening the Dutch firm’s assurance to move ahead in developing the technology.

Intel shares slid about 1 per cent to $25.87 after hours, from a close of $26.17 on Nasdaq. ASML shot up 6.3 per cent to $51.53 from a close of $48.46.

ASML competes with Japanese groups Canon and Nikon. Its clients include Intel and Samsung Electronics. ($1 = 0.8130 euros)

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SQL Star to acquire Mindlogicx in all-share deal

MUMBAI: Software training company SQL Star International today said it will acquire IT education firm Mindlogicx in an all-share deal.

“Post merger of SQL Star with Mindlogicx, there will be capital restructuring where we have agreed on equity swap ratio of four Mindlogicx share for five SQL Star share,” SQL Star Managing Director Sunil Gupta said.

The company in a BSE filing said its board has approved amalgamation of Mindlogicx with it.

Gupta said post this merger, SQL will absorb over 400 existing employees of Mindlogicx.

“The joint workforce of SQL will be 800 after restructuring,” he said.

At present, SQL Star offers its services through eight training centers located at Hyderabad, Kolkata, Chennai, Bangalore, Mumbai, Delhi and Pune and has a clientele which includes Oracle, TCS, Infosys, Wipro, Accenture, Metro Rail, Schneider, among others.

Shares of SQL Star closed higher by 3.64 per cent at Rs 5.70 on the BSE.

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Startup to bring real-money bets to social games

WASHINGTON: Online social games could get a shot of real money with a new platform launched by a startup on Monday.

The new platform to allow real-money bets on almost any online game is coming from Betable, a London-headquartered company with a British gambling license, and working in California with US game developers.

“This is the first and only platform to allow any game developer to allow real-money gambling,” said Christopher Griffin, chief executive of Betable.

Griffin told AFP the new system will allow players outside the United States and other jurisdictions where online gambling is legal to place real-money wagers.

He said this combines the experience of social games with the thrills of real betting. It can be offered on computers and a variety of mobile devices.

“Social game developers have all the ingredients that the gambling guys are missing,” Griffin said.

“They have good user experiences. They have a huge install base of a billion players, but they don’t have access to monetization.”

Betable has not announced any specific contracts, but said the platform could be used by the popular Facebook or social games like Zynga’s Farmville.

“We can turn the harvesting of crops into a slot machine,” said Griffin.

“You could add a slot machine, you could buy the corn with real money. The cool thing is you can build traditional casino games or invent totally new mechanics.”

Griffin said the problem with social games is that despite their popularity, developers have few opportunities to make money. Only a small number of players pay for “premium” games, and advertising revenues are limited.

Betable has a British gaming license which allows bets to be placed from any jurisdiction in the world where online gambling is legal. This means US players are excluded because of a ban on Internet gambling in the United States.

“At Betable, we’re unlocking real-money gaming for developers who can innovate in what up until now has been a massively impenetrable space,” said Griffin.

“Our partners and investors believe that Betable represents the largest opportunity for innovation and monetization for game developers in years.”

The company has not released details of its funding, but said it has “more than 25 investors” and “one of 2012’s largest seed rounds of funding.”

Those investing include venture capital groups Greylock Discovery Fund and FF Angel LLC, True Ventures, along with Facebook launch team member Dave Morin and Russian billionaire Yuri Milner, an early Facebook investor.

“We believe real-money gaming will make the social games industry more successful and has the potential to catapult games that offer it to the top of every app store on the planet,” said Tony Conrad, partner at True Ventures.

“While awaiting the US legalization of online gambling which could take years, the overseas markets represent billions of dollars in opportunity for developers located anywhere in the world.”

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