Why You Shouldn’t Use Rice to Dry Your Wet iPhone

Posted by on Nov 22, 2016 in Feat, Gadgets, Phone, Tech | Comments Off on Why You Shouldn’t Use Rice to Dry Your Wet iPhone

Why You Shouldn’t Use Rice to Dry Your Wet iPhone

“Help I’ve dropped my iPhone in water!”

Ouch. It sounds painful doesn’t it? If you have dropped your iPhone into a pool of water (sink, toilet, pool, pond), it can be difficult to know what to do next. Most people turn to Google and search ‘what to do if you’ve dropped your iPhone in water’. Doing this will bring up a multitude of articles (including this one) that tell you how to treat a water damaged iPhone – this is good. You’ll find that 90% of them suggest placing the iPhone into a container filled with uncooked rice to dry overnight – this is bad.

Why would drying your phone in a bowl of rice do it any harm? Here are 4 reasons why you should not use rice to dry a wet iPhone.

phone-in-water

1. Don’t believe the hype

Uncooked rice is not that good an absorbent. In a study completed by Gazelle, different household products were tested against each other to see which was best at absorbing water. They compared seven different absorbing agents:

  • Uncooked rice
  • Instant rice
  • Crystal cat litter
  • Silica gel packets
  • Instant oatmeal
  • Classic oatmeal
  • Couscous

Uncooked rice was actually found to be the worst agent for absorbing moisture. It absorbed the least amount of water in a 24-hour period, thus trumping the myth that uncooked rice is a good desiccant.

2. A false sense of security

All the rice method does is delay proper treatment. While your wet phone is submerged under a bed of rice, water will dry on the electrical board inside leaving residue around the connectors. This will cause lasting damage to the phone if left untreated and puts your data at risk. Even if the phone turns on after 24-72 hours in the rice, the damage will still be there. Lasting water damage in your iPhone will shorten its life expectancy and cause it to perform poorly after about four to six months.

3. Those grains get everywhere!

rice-in-your-phone

Many users have found problems with faulty headphone and charger ports after drying their phone in rice (seriously, it happens more than you’d think). Many times, grains or even fragments of grains can get caught in these ports, or around the microphone. It’s extremely difficult to remove rice from inside an iPhone without damaging other components. Fixing it could actually harm the port and cost you quite a bit to repair. Your iPhone’s warranty does not cover external objects that get stuck inside your iPhone.

4. Things rice won’t fix

As mentioned before, the rice doesn’t absorb the water on the inside of the phone and that’s where the real problem lies. The real aim when drying your iPhone is to displace the water from the board, so that is doesn’t touch the electrical components inside. Water damage causes staining and corrosion. This can be fixed only when you take the phone apart and clean the internals. Isopropyl alcohol can be used to do this (more details on this below).

The Right Way to Save a Wet iPhone or Android

So now that you know what not to do when you drop your smartphone in water, let us tell you how to go about fixing it the right way!

Don’t let it drown

It’s vitally important to remove the phone from water as soon as you can! Most times the amount of damage the phone attains, really does depend on the amount of time it spent in water.

While this may be a more frightening task for those of you that dropped your phone it the toilet, it’s necessary if you have any hope of saving your phone and it’s data.

Don’t let it fry

burned-phone

This is important – don’t turn it on and do not charge it. As you know, water and electricals are, and always will be mortal enemies. If your phone falls into water while it is switched on, it can short circuit. That being said, once you retrieve it from the water, turn it off right away. If the power button is broken or it’s a black screen and the lock button isn’t working, have no fear. There are many ways you can quickly turn off your phone to avoid causing more damage.

Trust the experts

While there are a lot of quick fix options out there, you should really get your phone to a professional right away and get it expertly treated. The methods you can find online can help in the interim (and some help you complete the task just like the experts), but it’s always better to be safe than sorry, in my opinion. Taking it to an expert can make sure all of the water is gone and your data is safe.

If you are not 100% sure the water is completely out of your phone, it will have a shorter life expectancy, and will not be able to withstand any physical knocks or little bumps months down the line.

Give it a try?

Fancy a challenge? If you would like to fix your water damaged iPhone yourself, I commend you my friend as I am not the DIY type (I’m sure it’s not as hard as I think it is). As previously mentioned, there are a lot of great sites out there that will help you fix your water damaged phone, but these from Gazelle and iFixit are two of the best. After running their tests to determine which household product absorbs the most water, Gazelle determined that the first thing someone should do is to shake out the phone to remove some of the water. Then, to make sure the water doesn’t ruin the phone from the inside, opening up the phone and leaving it in front of a fan is the best way. iFixit’s article takes things a little further to ensure you can save your phone. Spoilers – you will need a Philips screwdriver, a toothbrush and isopropyl alcohol.

The Backup Plan

phone-covered-in-water

While methods you can find online may work perfectly fine and experts can bring almost everything back from the brink of the technology graveyard, a backup plan is never a bad idea. If you dropped your phone in the ocean, didn’t save your phone quick enough, couldn’t bare to reach into the toilet to save your tie to the rest of the world, or the phone saving methods just didn’t work for you; have no fear! If Facebook and Snapchat have taught us anything it’s that data is never completely gone.

If you lost your phone or it’s water damaged beyond repair, you can still access your data. There are many data recovery tools out there that can help you in this moment of crisis. Your pictures, videos, texts, WhatsApp messages and so many other file types are not lost forever. Without your phone you can extract your data from backup files, and if you have your phone you can use the software to extract your data from the device (just make sure it’s dry first).

Some recovery tools offer software that you need to buy, but there are also many free options as well. Just remember – while smartphones are pricey, they can be replaced. Your memories are priceless (and can be saved)!

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Techie Tips: 3 Computing Technologies for Ecommerce

Posted by on Nov 11, 2016 in Branding, Computing, Feat | Comments Off on Techie Tips: 3 Computing Technologies for Ecommerce

Techie Tips: 3 Computing Technologies for Ecommerce

As the trend of various businesses moves towards offering their products and services online, electronic commerce, or more simply known as ecommerce, is making an impact that is felt in virtually all industries. Not only has it shaped a new landscape in regard to how transactions and trade are performed, but it is continuing to be one of the most convenient approaches to taking away the ‘distance’ factor for businesses.

ecommerce-possibilities

Truly, it can be confidently said that it is the future of the economy. For this reason, many businessmen are finding themselves riding a new trend, as a significant number of companies have already migrated online and are now reaping all the benefits.

Then again, with all these great perks and advantages, a revolutionary digital tool has presented a much more demanding and competitive market in all industries it has touched. As such, small and medium enterprises (SME’s) have taken the risk and have jumped on the bandwagon together with much bigger businesses towards a much more expansive online arena.

In this business playing field, any player who is brave enough can learn, earn and grow as they present their products and services through the internet. Nowadays, it is just a matter of who makes the important steps to achieve more traction and audience. While technology remains the key in practically all business, ecommerce serves as that one big step to the next level. In this regard, it is important to take note of these three computing technologies that can and will raise the bar for ecommerce in the global market.

Good CMS, Better Business

Most guides would declare that any aspiring ecommerce business should first create a limited liability company or LLC. As the name implies, an LLC provides a business with limited liability in case the owner is sued. Unlike a sole proprietorship, an LLC is a legal entity separate from the business owner. In other words, if someone sues the business, or one of the employees, the owner’s personal assets are protected.

volusion-vs-shopify

The next step is to set-up the business as usual. Setting up the paper work such as opening a business checking account, putting a trademark on one’s intellectual property and getting tax permits get the ball rolling. After that, it is integral to check the competition and produce new ideas to be something newer and more different.

The last important step is to tap into the virtual market through online tools, such as creating a virtual presence with a website. In this regard, choosing the right content management system or CMS is the best way to go.

A content management system or CMS is a software application or set of related programs that are used to create and manage digital content. CMS’s are typically used for enterprise content management (ECM) and web content management (WCM). In other words, a CMS is an ecommerce solution that helps ecommerce businesses expand their audience by tools such as social media integration and SEO tools.

Content management systems are intended to help one’s business expand and grow to the upper niche. While simple web creation software can help an owner get a quick, informational site up, CMS software helps business owners to incorporate important eCommerce tools, such as shopping carts and point-of-sale systems.

One can also incorporate a customized help desk, live chat and inventory management. The best content management systems can track affiliate income including ad clicks on the site and third-party vendors that sell products.

The most prominent names in the CMS department only come down to two, namely: volusion and Shopify.

This volusion vs shopify era has been a game changer for ecommerce because they always aim to provide the better services and add-ons to their patrons. As such , it is important that an owner be informed on what factors should be noted of.

Looks Sell: Webmaster Coding and Design

One of the primary functions of content management software is basic web creation. Most CMS programs come with traditional web-building tools and features, traditionally known as add-ons, so an owner can quickly upload a professional, working webpage, then develop it with more in-depth functions and tools later. Some features that are important for a CMS to include are a blog, wiki, discussion forms and other user-contribution features.

Although CMS’s already provide templates and utilities in which an owner can design his or her website, it is imperative that ecommerce professionals up the ante with regard to the appearance of their sites. The golden rule of business and advertising is that looks sell. In the online business world, one’s website represents the owner’s character and professionalism, whether people would trust him or her with their purchases. More often than not, the one that looks better sells more.

super-technology

For this reason, it is important for business owners to acknowledge the need for professional expertise in this matter. One significant step towards achieving a good presence online is by hiring an expert coder or web designer. These professionals are equipped with the right programming knowledge that can help owners to customize their websites according to their preferences. In this way, businesspeople are more hands-on with their business, setting up their websites in a way that not only pleases their customers, but also pleases themselves.

Overall, web code experts or webmasters are very specific in giving customers a good experience in the site by following specific goals and guidelines. They recognize that it is extremely important to keep usability in mind and not sacrifice it just for the sake of appearance.

Add Sales with Online Ads

CMS also gives patrons a valuable amount of add-ons with regard to advertising tools, such as social media viewership and Search Engine Optimization. However, the bigger question lies whether it is sufficient to get a wider audience. Stepping up in using online advertising is a viable option to do just that. Online advertising is one of the most effective ways for businesses of all sizes to expand their reach, find new customers, and diversify their revenue streams.

With so many options available – from PPC and social media boosts to webpage ad display and in-app ads – online advertising can be intimidating to newcomers, but it does not have to be. Many establishments now offer services to boost online presence and sell more. Paid search – also known as pay-per-click advertising or PPC – is one of the most common and effective types of online advertising.

online-advertising

Paid search allows one to bid on relevant terms and phrases that may cause text-based ads to be displayed to users when they enter specific search queries into search engines. These terms and phrases are known as keywords, and they form the basis of PPC advertising. Advertisers bid on keywords as part of an ad auction. This ensures that all advertisers have a fair chance of their ads being displayed to users, rather than those with the biggest advertising budgets.

Keywords should be highly relevant to the owner’s business, organized and structured into logical ad groups separated by campaign type, and aligned with the correct match type in order to be displayed to the right visitors, at the right time, for the right campaign.

While paid search may have transformed internet advertising, paid social is transforming the web of tomorrow. Social networking remains the most popular virtual hub for adults all over the world, and advertisers have evolved their strategies to target consumers where they spend their time, namely on social networks such as Facebook and Twitter. Paid social advertising functions similarly to paid search, with the notable exception that advertisers, not users, take the initiative – advertisers must “search” for users, rather than the other way around.

One of the greatest strengths of paid social advertising is the granularity with which advertisers can target prospective customers, and this principle underpins many social advertising platforms and products. Advertisers can target users with hundreds of parameters, from demographic data (such as age, gender, income, level of education, and marital status) to browsing preferences and social behavior.

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7 Early Warning Signs of Low Testosterone

Posted by on Nov 11, 2016 in Feat, Fitness, Health, Medical gadgets | Comments Off on 7 Early Warning Signs of Low Testosterone

7 Early Warning Signs of Low Testosterone

Having low testosterone is not something men should just shrug off. The problem is that most people can’t easily determine or simply just don’t initially care enough to have themselves checked for testosterone deficiency.

The most well-known and most drastic effect of low testosterone – or low T – is lack of sex drive in men. However, having low testosterone doesn’t only affect your sex drive and your ability to give a satisfactory performance during sex: it can have other serious physiological and psychological effects as well.

strong-vs-weak

Ultimately, having low T serves as a factor in developing high risk medical conditions like diabetes, obesity, and high blood pressure.

As such, it is imperative to take time and have your testosterone levels checked. To know more how your body relates to testosterone deficiency, here are the most common early warning signs of low testosterone that you should be mindful of:

Low Sex Drive

Naturally produced by the body, testosterone is a hormone that helps build muscle and bone mass. Predominantly found in men, it stimulates sperm production, and increases a man’s libido. That being said, the most adverse symptom of having deficiency in testosterone is the drop in one’s sexual drives.

low-sex-drive

Testosterone plays a key role in libido (sex drive) in both men and women. By nature, men may experience some decline in sex drive as they age. However, someone with low T can likely experience a more drastic drop in his desire to have sex at a much earlier age. Low T can also decrease the sex drive in women, along with other factors, such as other hormonal and mood changes.

Difficulty in Having an Erection

Apart from the psychological sex drive, low testosterone also affects the physical manifestations of sex drive as it decreases the ability for erection. In essence, testosterone alone doesn’t cause an erection, but it stimulates receptors in the brain to produce nitric oxide — a molecule that helps trigger an erection.

When testosterone levels are too low, a man may have difficulty achieving an erection prior to sex or experience spontaneous erections (for example, during sleep). Then again, other health problems can influence erectile function, so it is important to determine whether low T is causing this symptom.

Decreased Volume of Semen Production

Testosterone also plays a huge role in the production of semen – motility of one’s sperm is highly dependent in the production of semen.

The more testosterone a man has, the more semen he produces. Men with low T may notice a decrease in the volume of their semen production during ejaculation. When this happens, it is important to check if the condition is testosterone-related or a result of other serious condition.

Hair Loss

Aside from the aspects of sexuality such as sex drive and erection, testosterone also has its contributions in other bodily functions and that includes hair production. Balding is a natural part of aging for many men, but men with low T may experience a loss of body and facial hair.

Male pattern hair loss is caused by three things: genes, hormones, and age. Roughly one-third of the male population starts to lose hair by the age of 45. By the time retirement rolls around, nearly all men have some degree of hair loss. However, if you are not old enough to be balding but are experiencing loss of hair nonetheless, you might just have testosterone deficiency.

hair-loss

Fatigue & Lack of Energy

Extreme fatigue is another symptom of having low T in men, especially when there’s a noticeable decrease in energy levels. If you feel that your energy level is unusually low despite having nutrition or proper rest, having low T might be a factor. You might be experiencing symptoms of low T if you are tired all of the time, despite getting plenty of sleep, or if you are finding it harder to get motivated to hit the gym or exercise.

It’s absolutely normal to experience dips in energy at points in the day. However, being tired all the time or tiring easily when you exercise could indicate something worse than needing more caffeine. In a study of men and women over the age of 65, scientists found that those with low testosterone easily felt exhausted, weren’t able to walk as fast as their peers with normal testosterone levels, and weren’t as active.

sleepy

Fatigue and lack of energy can consequently cause a lot more problems for people with low T, since they won’t be able to maintain the best lifestyle – for example, they find it hard to do their usual routine like working out, jogging or walking around the block because of their lack of energy.

For men, the doctors say that the best course of action is to look for the natural sources of testosterone such as highly-nutritious food and some organic supplements. There’s also some organically made supplements – you may want to check out the best natural testosterone booster reviews for reference.

Increase in Body Fat

Physically and physiologically, low testosterone aids in an increase in body fat. Physically, men with low T can experience fatigue or low energy, which means that they can’t work out (as previously mentioned). Physiologically, men with low T may also experience increase in body fat. Sometimes, they can develop “gynecomastia”, a condition in which they develop enlarged breasts.

Consequently, patients may experience a struggle to lose weight (especially belly fat). Basically, testosterone helps regulate the placement of muscle and fat in your body, and a lack of this hormone shifts the balance in favor of fat, especially around your middle.

Furthermore, not only does low testosterone keep fat on your body, it also affects your ability to build muscle and can even make you lose the muscle you already have. When researchers measured testosterone levels and muscle density in 430 Japanese women, ages 40 to 79, researchers found low testosterone was associated with loss of muscle in their arms and legs over time.

Depression

Lack of testosterone can also give out signs of depression in men, as testosterone naturally aids in boosting the mood in general.

Researchers have found out that testosterone is significantly effective for boosting mood and treating depression in men with low baseline testosterone levels. In their study, testosterone has worked best in men with minor depression or dysthymia, a subtype of depression that is characterized by less severe but longer-lasting symptoms. On the other hand, the hormone has also proved to be helpful in men with more severe depression, but the effect is not as strong.

depression

A clinical trial looking at testosterone’s effects on depressive symptoms was wrapping up around the same time the St. Louis researchers completed their study. The results of this six-month trial, published in the medical journal “Comprehensive evaluation of androgen replacement therapy in aging Japanese men with late-onset hypogonadism” by Keisuke Okada were consistent with previous studies in showing that testosterone replacement therapy effectively treats depression in men with low testosterone.

This study looked at 50 men with an average age of 57 who had low testosterone and were treated by urologists at the Kobe University Graduate School of Medicine in Japan. Thirty of the men were diagnosed with depression at the beginning of the study. For those men, depression symptoms significantly decreased by month 6, and only 11 of the 30 (36.7%) were still suffering from some depression after testosterone therapy.

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Office Worker Back Problems and How to Solve Them

Posted by on Sep 26, 2016 in Feat, Fitness, Gadgets, Health | Comments Off on Office Worker Back Problems and How to Solve Them

Office Worker Back Problems and How to Solve Them

Human bodies are not designed for a sedentary lifestyle.

However, in this technologically driven society, people often feel there is no choice but to spend generous portions of the day sitting in one spot. The age of computers has brought about a surplus of a lot of office-based jobs that requires employees to sit in front of a desk for at least eight hours a day!

back-pain-in-chair

At this rate, even the average healthy person’s back can take a beating from this low-energy lifestyle. Typically, this lifestyle leads to increased pain, stiffness and long-term problems. Science shows that the body is naturally designed to be active, and sedentary positions cause back muscles to tense up from supporting the rest of the body in a single stance for too long. In turn, the spine is also adversely affected.

Back Pain

Back pain is one of the most common work-related injuries. More often than not, back pain is caused by accumulation of stress from ordinary work activities such as sitting in an office chair or heavy lifting. There are generally two types of back pain:

  • Non-accidental injury, where pain arises as a result of normal activities and requirements of the task. Poor body mechanics (such as slouching in an office chair), prolonged inactivity, repetitive motions, and fatigue are major contributors to these injuries. This may occur from sitting in an office chair or standing for too long in one position.
  • Accidental injury results when an unexpected event triggers injury during the task. A load that slips or shifts as it is being lifted, or hitting one’s head on a cabinet door are typical office-related examples. These accidents can jolt the neck, back, and other joints with resulting muscle strain or tearing of soft tissues in the back.

experiencing-back-pain

The non-accidental type of injury is what kills our backs. Surely, a few minutes of slouching may not cause a huge back pain, but after having a hundred few minutes accumulated after a week’s worth of poor body mechanics, anyone can definitely feel the back pain kick in.

The easy-access solution for this is ergonomics. Applying ergonomic principles – the study of the workplace as it relates to the worker – can help prevent work-related back pain and back injury, and help maintain a healthy back. The goal of an ergonomics program in industry is to adapt the workplace to a specific worker, depending on the job description, required tasks, and physical makeup of the employee performing those tasks. These, can then be applied to the office equipment, such as the chair or computer keyboard.

However, despite many companies promoting ergonomic working conditions, countless employees still continue to practice poor posture at their desk, even outside the office. Aside from sitting all day at the office, people also tend to sit awkwardly in heavy traffic during daily commute, while eating lunch or during coffee breaks. All this just adds to the stress on the back, which could lead to long-term (and oftentimes permanent) damage to the lower back’s ligaments.

Additionally, living a sedentary lifestyle in general contributes to obesity. This is another cause which can consequently lead to undue strain on the back. The joints and muscles are not designed to endure extra weight as the years go by, and as the bodies are aging and growing frailer, people still tend to demand that they can take on more work. It’s a vicious cycle that is detrimental to the whole body.

And it all starts in the back.

The Macro-level Solution

To treat back problems before they even come, there are ways to strengthen them. Looking at the big picture, strengthening the back requires these basic steps:

slouching-at-desk

  • Stay active. This is the most important thing one can do to prevent and/or relieve back pain. If possible, take frequent breaks at work and walk/jog during lunch hour. Once at home, overcome end-of-day fatigue by hitting the gym or walking the dog. In other words, avoid the TV and Internet!

Engaging in exercise and fitness activities helps keep the back healthy by allowing discs to exchange fluids which is how the disc receives its nutrition. A healthy disc swells with water and squeeze it out, similar to the action of a sponge. This sponge action distributes nutrients to the disc.

Exercising the back also reduces stiffness by keeping the connective fibers of ligaments and tendons flexible. Improved mobility through back exercise helps prevent the connective fibers from tearing under stress, which in turn prevents injury and back pains.

  • Have a discussion with the employer about minimal adjustments that can be done to reduce chronic pain:

This could include getting a chair specifically designed to alleviate back pain or an adjusted schedule to allow for stretches and an active breather from the cubicle.

Also, go out and make a personal effort to find ways to deal with back pain. If people can go out shopping for the best Trench Coats 2016 and the White Coat Black Friday Sale, surely you should be able to find a good deal on an ergonomic chair. Now, if it’s for the relief of back pains, it is important to be mindful of the best market for the best deal on ergonomic furniture, supported attachments and other back pain comforters in the market.

  • When pain is exceptionally bad, call a doctor. While rare, back pain can be a sign of something more serious. If your desk job causes serious damage to the back, it could be causing more damage to other parts of the body as well.

The Micro-level Solution

Here are the most important guidelines from Spine-health.com to help make sure that the office chair and work area are as comfortable as possible, and cause the least amount of stress to the spine:

stretching-in-chair

  • Elbow measure: First, begin by sitting comfortably as close as possible to the desk so that the upper arms are parallel to the spine. Rest hands on the work surface (e.g. desktop, computer keyboard). If the elbows are not at a 90-degree angle, adjust the office chair height either up or down.
  • Thigh measure: Check that the fingers can easily slide under the thigh at the leading edge of the office chair. If it is too tight, the feet should be propped up with an adjustable footrest. For taller people, the desk or work surface may need to be raised to give room for adjustment of the office chair.
  • Calf measure: With the back pushed all the way against the back of the chair, try to pass a clenched fist between the back of the calf and the front of the office chair. If this can’t be done easily, the office chair may be too deep. In this case, the backrest must be adjusted forward. If all else fails, insert a low back support (such as a lumbar support cushion, a pillow or rolled up towel), or just get a new office chair.
  • Low back support: With the back pushed all the ways against the back of the chair, there should be a cushion that causes the lower back to arch slightly so that the body won’t slump forward or slouch down in the chair. This low back support in the office chair is essential to minimize the load (strain) on the back. Never slump or slouch forward in the office chair, as that places extra stress on the structures in the low back, and in particular, on the lumbar discs.

happy-worker

  • Armrest: Adjust the armrest of the office chair so that it just slightly lifts the arms at the shoulders. Use of an armrest on the office chair is important to take some of the strain off the upper spine and shoulders, and it should make one less likely to slouch forward in the chair.
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How faxing plays a vital role in POS-dependent Businesses

Posted by on Aug 16, 2016 in Feat, Gadgets | Comments Off on How faxing plays a vital role in POS-dependent Businesses

How faxing plays a vital role in POS-dependent Businesses

Faxing – particularly faxing through email – is a technology that is here to stay for a long while. Riding the technological revolution, the olden service has taken a new innovative twist to help both old and new enterprises manage their paperwork.

For instance, POS (Point of Sale)-dependent businesses like restaurants and boutiques keep track of orders and sales and have to ensure the security and viability of written documents. These integral logistic elements require a quick, reliable and effective tool to get the job done. In this case, faxing serves as a good option most of the time.

hand faxing

There are many ways that faxing is still a part of many businesses, and this just keeps the technology alive and kicking today’s advancements. With the rise of trendy businesses that help bridge past technologies to recent, faxing continues to survive.

The Power of Point of Sale Systems

POS systems are defined as “A computerized network operated by a main computer and linked to several checkout terminals”.

POS system

Basically, these systems allow you to monitor your business much easier. Inventory software programs that are currently in the market let you track usage, monitor changes in unit dollar costs, calculate when you need to reorder, and analyze inventory levels on an item-by-item basis. You can even control inventory right at the cash register with point-of-sale (POS) software systems.

POS software records each sale when it happens. This, in turn, makes sure that your inventory records are always up-to-date. Because of how intricate the POS systems are, users can get much more information about the sale than you could gather with a manual system. This is a highly regarded feature, since through running reports based on this information, you can make better decisions about ordering and merchandising.

POS systems are famous for allowing the analysis of sales data that you (as the owner and user) can figure out how well all the items on your shelves sell, and adjust purchasing levels accordingly. You can also maintain a sales history to help adjust your buying decisions for seasonal purchasing trends. Furthermore, you can improve pricing accuracy by integrating bar-code scanners and credit card authorization ability with the POS system.

There are plenty of popular POS software systems that enable you to use add-on devices at your checkout stations, including electronic cash drawers, bar-code scanners, credit card readers, and receipt or invoice printers. POS packages frequently come with integrated accounting modules, including general ledger, accounts receivable, accounts payable, purchasing, and inventory control systems. In essence, a POS system is an all-in-one way to keep track of your business’s cash flow.

cash register

POS system providers easily evolved to added services, and ultimately helped a lot of other businesses to grow as the technology advanced. For example, Ordersnapp provides services that can help restaurants sell their products somewhere else.

Evolution of Faxing

It’s safe to assume that people would always prefer the latest technology. Ron Resnick, Ordersnapp President, said that some clients prefer email, and some would rather get push notifications through their phones. However, a substantial number of OrderSnapp clients —somewhere between 30 and 40 percent, as Resnick estimated — prefer to have their customers’ web and app orders delivered through a technology that has been rumored to be extinct.

Yes, a lot of clients still prefer faxing documents.

Resnick said, “A lot of the smaller, family-owned or individually owned restaurants, there’s a lot of them that still don’t have Internet access.” Because most of these businesses are not exactly well-versed with the internet, or they never thought about having internet access, these small enterprises would choose faxing printed documents like receipts rather than starting out electronic in the first place.

hand faxing

Like many older industries – from law firms to medical labs – fax machines aren’t seen as “a blast from the past” but as an efficient, reliable, and mostly secure way to communicate. “Faxing has been there for so long, and they’re so used to it,” added Resnick. “It doesn’t cost them anything extra. It’s still a very good success rate with it, as far as them going through.”

Thankfully there are technological heroes in this time period. These are those programmers that respect the value of the previous technologies and gave extra sweat in merging the past into the future. Developers now aimed to bridge the gap between the era of faxing and the era of paperless documentation.

Thus, the birth of Phaxio, dubbed as “faxing for developers”. It’s one of several cloud-based faxing providers whose APIs make it possible to send and receive faxes without ever worrying about loading paper and toner into a traditional fax machine.

Phaxio lets its customers build faxing into their apps and websites with the same kind of APIs they’d use to integrate 21st-century services like posting tweets or sending email confirmations, without needing to think about the phone lines and screeching modems that make it all happen.

Think of it as a way for other people to have a head start in developing software, apps or programs that can further improve the quality of email faxing.

Moving Forward

As the bridge has been set for the previous technology to the present one, it is just a matter of time when the past one dies out. If not, the present one becomes much more favored.

fax buttons

Some of Phaxio’s customers are established companies looking to phase out their physical fax machines, and some are startups like OrderSnapp looking to work with clients in fax-dominated industries, says Phaxio cofounder Howard Avner.

Nonetheless, Phaxio’s customers don’t want to worry about the gory details of busy signals, line noise, and quirky old fax machines so they can focus on their core businesses. The company advertises simple pricing — 7 cents per minute for faxing to and from the U.S. and Canada, 10 cents for other countries — and volume discounts for users with more than 50,000 faxes sent and received per day.

Phaxio is just one of the few (and currently growing) companies that aim to bridge the gap between the modern Internet and the old fax machines. Hellofax offers the ability to send and receive faxes through the web, via email or from cloud services like Dropbox and Google Drive.

Gmail Fax through http://www.gmailfaxhelp.com/tutorials/google-fax-number/ allows users to use something as simple as your Gmail address to fax in just a few minutes. A valuable solution that Gmail Fax pioneered is allowing the bypassing of complicated installations and even eliminating the need of a dedicated fax line. Instead, a Google fax number is created instantly online and helps a lot in the easier access of many documents.

Faxage.com lets users send and receive faxes by email, through its website or using its API. Faxage claims that it processes more than 11 million minutes of fax transmissions every month. “Faxage measures and bills usage in minutes to make price comparisons with traditional phone plans simpler,” says EC Data Systems’ (EC Data System manages Faxage) President Christian Watts.

Many people have argued for years that fax has already overstayed its welcome. They claim that its continued prevalence is just the result of typical enterprise conservatism and older generations’ enthusiasm for the printed word and signatures inked on the proverbial dotted line. Then again, those in the digital fax industry point out that even businesses that have largely migrated records away from paper and aren’t otherwise tech-averse still find value in fax. “Companies don’t just keep sending and receiving all those faxes out of pure inertia,” says Faxage’s Watts.

As long as businesses grow and become more complex, fax is here to stay.

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How your hardware fairs with Google Fax Online

Posted by on Aug 16, 2016 in Feat, Gadgets | Comments Off on How your hardware fairs with Google Fax Online

How your hardware fairs with Google Fax Online

Communication has gone to a whole new niche considering the trending approaches provided by technological innovations. Your once big and bulky computer and telephone is now reduced in size and fused into a handy yet powerful Smartphone. It not only enables you to talk and text, but to also utilize the power of the internet on demand, rendering your craggy modem practically unnecessary.

The change brought about by technology is as constant and as frequent as every passing day. True enough, as time passes, the better it gets. This is further highlighted when major players in the world of technology such as Google provides pathways for a more efficient method in communication.

man trying to fax

Faxing. And the ease it brings is as astounding as it gets.

The manual faxing techniques have been improved with the advent of the internet. Ergo, online faxing services. This surprisingly unique service permits clients to oversee both outbound and inbound transmission of information, documents and records through fax. As such, the service has become more popular in the most recent couple of years, turning into the favored approach to sending and getting faxes online without any difficulty.

Gmail has made faxing accessible to be people with means of an affordable, faster, and easier way to send and receive faxes that reduce the machine related problems such as the jamming of the papers and a busy line. This communication evolution has various features that support the fax service, ensuring that it is beneficial for both business and personal correspondence.

With Google Fax, you are only required to have one account and an email fax service that will enable you to create the connection between your email and the fax server. This entails a virtual fax number that will enable you to receive your faxes via Gmail. This alternative mean to send out and receive important documents via Gmail has been considered to have numerous benefits in different industries through various vehicles.

gmail faxing

If you take a closer look, the method of online faxing is easy. You just have to follow simple steps like establishing your email account and finding your service provider to guide you through the process. Visit http://www.gmailfaxhelp.com/tutorials/google-fax-number/ to get a guide on how you can get your Google fax number out to get you going.

Now, just like with any means of communication, one important question remains – what gadgets CAN you actually use when you opt for Google Faxing? Here is a rundown of how the current technologies on gadgets and devices match up with the service:

Printer/Fax Machine is the real deal

The ultimate device that fits for the job is its hardware grandfather – the fax machine. The ones which have been tested through time may not be used in this type of service though, simply because the processing requirements do not match.

A drawback of the use of old fax machines is the crudeness of faxed documents. Breaking down the science behind the olden device, a fax machine senses areas of black and white by shining a bright light onto the page it’s transmitting and using photocells (light-sensitive electronic components) to measure the light reflected back again.

fax machine

The photocells transmit when they see white areas and don’t transmit when they see black. In other words, they can’t distinguish shades of gray (or “half-tones”). That means a photograph or artwork sent by fax will lose much of its detail and may even become completely unrecognizable at the other end.

There are modern fax machines which are continually being marketed since most of these devices are built for multiple purposes such as printing and copying as well scanning. HP Officejet offers these utilities in one device, not to mention its industrial-level durability. For a cheaper machine, the Epson WorkForce 3620 provides high-quality printing with inkjet technology assimilated by wireless technology.

Comfort at home with your Personal Computer

Gmail faxing makes it a point to provide comfort and ease to every one of its users. Where else is more comfortable than using your desktop or laptop at home?

Fax solutions let you send faxes anytime you’re at your computer desktop, using any email programs or web-based email services, as well as from applications that can send its documents as email attachments. You can also create individualized fax broadcasts, sending one document to tens, hundreds, or thousands of fax recipients. Furthermore, when you’re away from your desktop, you can send your faxes through a convenient online form.

types of faxing

The easiest way to configure your desktop as a fax machine is to connect a phone line to your PC. Some PCs – especially older PCs – have a phone jack port built-in. This is to provide wired internet access in case wireless internet isn’t available. However, you can also use that jack to connect a phone line to your PC and use it as a fax machine.

If you don’t see a phone jack port on your PC, then you can purchase an external fax modem. External fax modems connect to your computer’s USB port and feature a phone jack port. They allow you to turn just about any PC into a virtual fax machine. Modems range in price from $20 to $80.

If you have an active phone line, then using your PC as a fax machine is free and easy. All Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7, and Windows 8 PCs have a built-in fax program called Windows Fax and Scan that lets you quickly and easily send faxes around the world.

Faxing can also be done in Apple devices. In fact, when it comes to online fax services, the majority of services work with an Apple computer. However, there are still ones (specifically with advanced features that require a user to download software) that may not have all the features enabled.

Connected fax and multifunction printer options that are compatible with OS X have become very popular – while Mac compatibility is better today than it ever has been. Users should check to make sure that any advanced features that are important to them are also available on the Mac version. Also, the general advice for people using Mac is to use email and browser services only such as those provided by Google.

Make it Easy with your Mobile

The most simple yet most wondrous device you can use when utilizing Google fax is through mobile devices such as your Smartphone and tablets. Why? Not only does it offer on the option to work while on-the-go, the applications in mobile devices pack up a lot of powerful functions and flexible features.

mobile faxing

In fact, there is a wide array of compatible choices of applications in mobile devices. In Android, Popcompanion is available on Marketplace for free. What’s more is that there is free trial! If you need to send faxes from Android regularly or receive faxes to your personal fax number, just like any other application, you need to upgrade in for more flexibility in its functions.

Another example is the eFax which offers a “free fax app” for subscribers that actually require a $14-$17 per month subscription. If you actually need to send quite a few faxes, this may be a good option.

On the other hand, iPhone users get to enjoy the same amazing applications. When you search for “fax” on the App Store, you can find quite a few options. At best, you can find apps that offer a total of five free faxed pages before they want money. Fax Burner , the top app for “fax” on the iOS app store, offers five pages to fax, all for free.

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The Unsung Benefits of Faxing to the Healthcare Industry

Posted by on Aug 16, 2016 in Feat, Trends | Comments Off on The Unsung Benefits of Faxing to the Healthcare Industry

The Unsung Benefits of Faxing to the Healthcare Industry

Faxing is still a viable tool for communication, and it’s still important today. There’s more to faxing scanned documents through email than what you might think.

The world is on a fast track in terms of technological advancement – more and more facets of our daily lives have been (and are still being) transformed into electronics. With it comes many paperless transactions, where the transfer of information is faster, more efficient, and cheaper in different ways.

nursing

These advancements have not excluded various documentation that activities that different businesses entail – from financial statements to legal documents, even newsletters. It only takes a matter of time when more sensitive facets such as healthcare gets affected. Though it is far beneficial and more cost-effective, the electronic database of health records faced a grueling challenge when files from the past had to be studied to help the present.

This is now when the power of fax comes into play.

Government regulations are driving healthcare organizations to adopt electronic health records (EHR) systems. When many labs, pharmacies, doctors’ practices and insurance companies still rely on faxed documents, many platforms such as GFI.com and the more generic – but still extremely reliable – Gmail through http://www.gmailfaxhelp.com/tutorials/google-fax-number/ started to resurface.

Their aim? Make faxing a better experience.

The Push to EHR

Most healthcare organizations are being driven by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) to adopt EHR and electronic medical records (EMR) systems, which requires them to store and transmit health information electronically.

HIPAA

Another push is resulting from the Meaningful Use provisions of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, which offers financial incentives to healthcare providers that not only implement EHR technology, but also demonstrate the use of EHR technology in quantifiable or qualitative ways.

Behind both these initiatives is the goal of reducing errors, making data and records more readily available, providing improved doctor-specialist-patient collaboration, and automating processes such as e-prescribing to reduce costs and time.

The Challenge to Faxing

Despite the practical and financial benefits of moving to e-records, some healthcare organizations are still facing a lot of challenges. Whether due to size, cost or resource limitations, transitioning from hard copy to soft copy is still a struggle. For instance, a general practitioner’s office may be able to electronically send patient data from their office to a specialist doctor’s practice, but their software does not enable them to transmit a patient’s prescription to the pharmacy except via printing.

In addition, some organizations believe it is too costly to integrate modern technological advancements into their office processes and systems. The perception is that they lack not only the financial resources but also the IT staff to implement this technology.

The reverse holds true as well; many organizations have gone paperless, but they deal with other medical providers who still require faxed documents. For example, some small pharmacies require a hard copy of medical prescriptions, or an insurance billing department may request that a doctor show a black-and-white copy of medical records for reimbursement purposes.

All these things considered, the bridge of the past technology into the modern advancement is as simple as faxing.

nurse faxin

No matter where your healthcare organization is in terms of moving away from paper documents, it’s important to address these challenges. As the push to e-records continues, how do healthcare organizations actually collaborate with other health providers without a flexible, integrated, electronic system?

Advancement in Faxing as well

Fortunately, faxing has also upped its game so it can keep pace with today’s technology. Many applications, providers (such as Gmail), and even dedicated fax servers are already in existence.

As such, GFI faxmaker enables users to quickly and easily send, receive and manage fax communications from their desktops. With faxes composed in a word processor (or other application) or created via email (commonly known as “email-to-fax”), numbers can be selected from the email client’s address list or entered manually. As a result, end-to-end fax communication process is shorter, more efficient and more organized.

man and woman nurs

The most significant benefit of a fax solution is the ability to electronically transmit documents, and hence comply with HIPAA and qualify for incentives stipulated under the Recovery Act. With the right solution, healthcare organizations can finally, and truly, go paperless – cost-effectively and effortlessly.

An integrated fax server enables an organization to send faxes from any application that has a print function, without any customization necessary. Instead of physically printing a prescription for a patient, a doctor can click print-to-fax and have the Rx transmitted through their fax server.

In addition, an integrated solution can route incoming faxes to one or several folders on the organization’s network, from which they can be imported into EHR applications. A perfect example of this integration is when an orthopedist sends an X-ray image to the patient’s primary care physician; it arrives in a network folder or email inbox in electronic format, such as a PDF or TIF. In the end, it can then be transferred or appended into the patient’s record.

Medical practices, lab offices, and other healthcare organizations can also save costs. An integrated solution reduces the need to print on paper, which in turn reduces toner and machine maintenance costs. Also, the reduction of paper can also save real-estate space, in terms of the need for stored documents.

A less tangible yet substantial form of savings is the increase in productivity. The need for more printing, punching in fax numbers, waiting to see if the fax goes through, or walking away from the fax only to find later the document was never sent have all been eliminated by the technology.

The Ease of Faxing Today

Nowadays, you can send fax from providers such as GFI Faxmaker or the easier-to-access and freeware Google Mail. Thanks to third party services that link your account to a virtual number, you can turn your computer or smartphone into a digital fax machine.  These “email fax services” let you send a fax as if it was an email, making it very easy to make the jump to online faxing.

 

Through Gmail, faxing is a very simple process. As a matter of fact, it is very similar to traditional emailing but with a few differences, mainly that: a.) The fax number is entered on the TO field, b.) the fax contents are attached to the email, c.) The MESSAGE field is the cover page.

All you need to start faxing is to scan a document, go to gmail.com and follow these steps by GmailFaxPro.com (http://www.gmailfaxpro.com/tutorials/how-to-send-a-fax-from-gmail/):

STEP 1.  Enter your Gmail account, and click on the COMPOSE button to start creating a new email.

STEP 2.  On the TO field, enter the desired fax number followed by “@faxprovider.com”.  Here, replace faxprovider.com with the domain given by your fax provider.  As an example, you would send a fax using eFax like this: faxnumber@efax.com.

Please refer to your service’s welcome email or Help section to learn which domain to use.

STEP 3.  Enter the message you want to appear on the cover page using either the SUBJECT or the MESSAGE field.

STEP 4.  Attach the document you wish to fax.  You can pick from different common file types such as DOC, TXT, XLS, JPG, BMP and TIFF.  Some services provide a wider range of file compatibility than others.

 

You can either upload these documents from your computer or pull them directly from your Google Drive account, using the Drive icon located next to the paper clip.

STEP 5.  Now your fax is composed and ready to be sent.  To complete the process just press the SEND button.

If faxing was easy before, it is a lot easier now. As everyone face the halfway point where the past and the future technology meets, the way for the much-valued hard copies of the past can now transcend into the more reliable soft copies of the future.

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