It’s amazing how cheap data storage is these days. Ten years ago I received a 64mb thumbdrive from my boss for Christmas. They were fairly new at the time, so it was a really big deal. It was a pretty cool little device to save a few files on. lol. Nowadays, thumbdrive sizes are in gigabytes rather than megabytes.
I have a 250gb external hard drive that I need to upgrade someday, since you can now buy one with available space in terabytes.
Cloud storage is a great storage option since you don’t have to worry about having a physical device to store the data on. You can also access the data from any computer, provided you have an internet connection. There are quite a few web sites out there that offer a certain amount of free cloud storage. Amazon even offers 5gb of free cloud storage.
There is a company called Nexsan that offer huge amounts of high end storage. They sell Flexible Storage Platform systems which may contain between 14 and 60 drives and can be expanded with additional units. The NEXSAN E5000 family of data storage systems can hold up to 720tb. That’s a lot of data. Drives use Nexsan’s anti-vibration design, cool drive technology and active drawer technology.
Nexsan also offers web-based storage system software with features such as disk provisioning, RAID hardware management, host data path services and automatic RAID set rebuild.
Nexsan’s storage application software includes features such as file services, snapshot, replication and archiving to storage system hardware. Archiving services id files for integrity, store two copies for added protection, continuously repair files, use WORM on disk, and provide data encryption and key management.
Nexsan was formed in 1999 and are based in Thousand Oaks, California.
Back up’s are really important. You never know when a disaster might happen and your data will be wiped out.
The other day I was working on a file in PHP. An example file I was following contained a call to unlink. Unlink was an unfamiliar function to me, but I found out the hard way what it does. Since the example file I was using called it, I included it in my test file. I ran my test file, and it suddenly disappeared. Yeah, unlink deletes a file. Luckily I was able to recreate my test file without too much trouble. I also downloaded an application called Recuva. After doing a deep scan and running all day, Recuva found the unlinked file, and I was able to restore it.
Craft fairs are very popular in my area of upstate New York during the summer time. You can buy a lot of very nice handmade items ranging from towels to large wooden furniture. Crafters set up booths at county and state fairs, and fairs featuring crafters only. At the county and state fairs you can also find trade show booths set up. Some of the trade show booths involve politicians trying to get your vote, companies advertising their products or non-profit organizations advertising their cause. The trade show and craft booths are the only part of fairs I like. A lot of times you can pick up a bunch of free things too. Pencils are a big item. Last year I picked up a nice ruler with photos of all of the past presidents along with their names and years. I also picked up a notepad of pre-filled forms to use for child school absences. With the large crowds that fairs draw, setting up a booth to get your message out is a great way to advertise.
There is a company called Post-Up Stand that sells Trade Show Displays. They sell curved and straight trade show displays. The curved trade show display has three or four panels that piece together to form a curved display. The straight trade show display has three or four panels that piece together to form a large straight display. Prices for both the curved and straight trade show displays range from $980 to $1440. Trade show displays include a frame, three printed banners, two halogen lights and a hard shipping case. The displays are easy to set up.
Post-Up Stand also sells Vinyl Banners. A lot of the trade show booths also have these attached to tables or hanging up at the back of their booths to advertise who they are. Vinyl banners are also great for restaurants, lobbies, school events or to hang outside your business to advertise a big sale. Prices range from $12 for a 2’x2′ banner to $192 for an 8’x8′ banner. Grommets and sewing are included. Banner stands and table top displays are also available from Post-Up Stand.
Post-Up Stand is located in Cleveland, Ohio. They offer a 48 hour turnaround for custom banner stands, trade show displays, and vinyl banners. Orders are shipped via FedEx and UPS.
My real world job is as a software developer, an applications software developer. I develop applications for the desktop computer using programming languages such as C, C++ and Java. For the majority of the past year, I have been gaining experience in web development using PHP and MySQL. It is very interesting. With HTML5 you can do just about anything in your web browser that you can do with a desktop application. Mobile development is another direction I would like to move in. Learning to develop a mobile application is my goal for next year. I’m going to start out with Android, since the Java based sdk is free.
I prefer to write programs that perform a specific task. That is why I am an applications programmer. Another avenue of programming is systems programming. Systems programmers write programs to maintain and control computer systems software, such as operating systems, networking or compilers.
Cyber-security software is a hot area where I live in upstate New York. Local colleges offer degrees geared towards cyber-security development. Many of the companies in this area also specialize in cyber-security. It is not really an area I am interested in. However, the safety of your computers and networks is very important. With the increase in mobile internet usage, cyber-security is becoming even more important.
There is a company called Milestone Systems, Inc. that specializes in network security. They offer project consulting, installation and implementation, staffing, operational training, renewals service, and managed services.
One of their product partners is called F5 networks. F5 Application Delivery Controllers ensure that your application will not encounter downtime or loss of productivity. One service offered is F5 auditing to ensure all F5 devices in your network are running smoothly and efficiently. If any problems are discovered, Milestone Systems, Inc. will offer a solution.
Another product partner is Cisco IronPort. Cisco IronPort offers email security. It helps protect your network from within. You control access to networks, servers and applications based on certain criteria such as machine and user identities, while Cisco IronPort reports all successful access attempts.
Milestone Systems, Inc also offers many training courses, including many different F5 training courses, such as F5 Networks Global Traffic Manager, F5 Big-IP Essentials and F5 Networks Troubleshooting Big-IP LTM. Cisco IronPort training courses are also offered. Some of these courses include Securing Your Web with Cisco IronPort S-Series, Securing Email w/ Cisco Ironport C-Series Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3, Virtual Securing Your Web with Cisco IronPort and Cisco Advanced SSL VPN Administration.
If you are in need of systems software, Milestone Systems, Inc might be worth a look.
I’ve been doing just about all of my Christmas shopping online. Orders I have placed have been mainly from Amazon and Walmart. When I order from Amazon, I prefer to order new items from Amazon themselves. They sell a lot of items from third party retailers. Sometimes the price is a little cheaper. I picked up a Star Wars Clone Trooper laptop for my seven year old for $26 through a third party retailer. Normally it sells for around $40. It was too good of a deal to pass up. I know my Star Wars fan will like it, so I took a chance and bought it from a third party dealer.
A few things to note when ordering from Amazon. If the description says “Ships from and sold by xxxxxx”, the third party retailer sells and ships the item. They are just using Amazon as a platform to sell their product. If the description says “Sold by xxxxxx and Fulfilled by Amazon”, the third party retailer sells the item, but has Amazon ship it. They have shipped the item to Amazon, who stores it for the third party in their warehouse. I discovered that when I clicked on the ‘have one to sell’ button.
I went through the process of listing an item, but didn’t submit it. It seems like Amazon charges pretty high fees. I think you pay less fees selling on ebay. Amazon takes out .99 per item sold, a referral fee which is a percentage of the sale price based on what the item is, and a variable closing fee which is based on the referral fee. If I sell an item for $27, I will end up with $26.63 minus what it will cost me to ship the item. In the end what you make turns out to be slightly less than the sale price, plus whatever it costs you for shipping.
With their own inventory and inventory from third party retailers, Amazon must have quite a system of storing items. I’ve ordered from them for years and have only had one order with a problem. They sent the right item, but the wrong invoice. They must have some sort of warehouse management software that they use to keep track of all the inventory. One such third party logistics software is from a company called 3pl. They provide web-based warehouse management software to companies to help them run more efficiently. Since it is web-based, there are no installation fees, no software upgrades, no new hardware and no consultants. The software helps provide customers with real time information. Profits are increased thanks to the automated process. Billing is more accurate. The 3pl software costs less than $500 per month. You can pay for what you use with no long-term contracts. You can also add and inactivate customers and warehouses as needed. The software can be customized to use your company logo.
Even though I will be sticking with ebay for selling, I still prefer to buy from Amazon.
This time of year, all the retailers are trying to get your business. They are offering lots of sales. Many online retailers are also offering free shipping. I picked up seven bottles of cabernet at wine.com for $78 with shipping/handling fees of a penny.
I picked up the Samsung Stratosphere for free during Best Buy’s Black Friday sale. My contract expired the day before, but I was going to wait until 4G is available in my area before upgrading to a new phone. Free was too good of a deal though, so I went with it. It would have cost me $149 to order the same phone from Verizon. The Stratosphere is Verizon’s only smartphone with a physical keyboard. At the moment, that’s a requirement for me. The virtual keyboard is ok, but the keys are kind of close together, so it’s easy to tap the wrong key.
Another retailer called Cymax is offering a month long holiday sale of up to 50% off with free shipping and no sales tax (except VA). They sell furniture and home decor. They have been in business since 2004. In 2010, they broke the $100 million sales mark and were officially listed as one of the world’s Top 500 online businesses by Internet Retailer. They pride themselves on offering great customer service, a wide variety of items, and low prices. They carry only brand-new merchandise from top manufacturers. All brands carry a full manufacturers warranty.
There is a company called InnaLabs headquartered in Dublin, Ireland that develops inertial navigation systems. At their research and design lab in the Ukraine, high performance inertial sensors are developed. InnaLabs produces high end, cutting edge accelerometers and gyroscopes. They are used in several industries for many different purposes, including aerospace and commercial aircraft, marine and land, oil exploration and energy, automation and robots as well as transportation markets.
Accelerometers are developed for use in inertial navigation systems, orientation, and stabilization systems. Accelerometers are used in aircrafts and unmanned vehicles, naval vehicles, and ships and orientation systems for the oil drilling industry.
Coriolis vibratory gyroscopes are available as 1, 2, or 3 axis gyroscope sensors. They use a vibrating quartz technology that uses the coriolis effect to measure the angular rotation rate. They are used for things such as platform stabilization, positioning and stabilized pointing, gyro-stabilized balls, railway tilt systems, sonar stabilization and autopilot sensing and control. They are also used in various unmanned vehicles such as automated guided vehicles, unmanned underwater vehicles, unmanned aerial vehicles and remotely operated underwater vehicles.
A single quartz gyrospcope uses a monolithic quartz sensing element. It has internal power regulation and is used by original equipment manufacturers. They are used for antenna and platform stabilization, robotics and vehicle control and stabilization, low-cost inertial systems, such as inertial navigation systems and for measurement purposes in precision farming, factory automation, medical, and orthopedic areas.
We are lucking out weather wise this weekend in upstate New York. The past few days have been very early fall like. The sun is out and it’s warm as in about 60 degrees. It is a welcome relief from all the rain we have had this fall. Unfortunately, the weather man thinks we may have a cold and snowy winter. The calm before the storm I guess.
I really hate the cold weather. It’s a good thing we have a high efficiency furnace. It is almost nine years old. We had a few minor problems last year, so this year I will probably have it serviced to make sure it is in good running order. It is an oil furnace. Someday I would like to upgrade it to a more greener method. We also heat with a woodstove located in the basement. The basement is the warmest place in the house during the winter. The woodstove really does cut down on the fuel bill, which is great. I also try to cut down on the oil bill by keeping the temperature around 67 – 68 degrees. If it gets too cold, we just put on a sweatshirt. My grandparents keep their house at about 65 degrees. Now that I have to buy oil, I can see why. Any way to cut down on the dependency of buying oil is welcome.
Photograph and video technology has really come a long way. Twenty years ago, I got my first camera as a Christmas gift. It was a Kodak disc camera. I took lots of pictures with that, so I have a bunch of photo albums in storage along with a bunch of negatives. Photo scanning is a time consuming process I don’t have time for right now.
There is a website called ScanDigital.com that offers photo scanning services. They will take those old photos and negatives and convert them to digital images. They first clean and prepare the photos with compressed air and a lint free cloth. Each picture is then scanned. Technicians will then repair each image by cropping, rotating, correcting the color and removing red eye. The photos are then put on a cd, dvd or external Hard Drive for you to enjoy. Using a photos to cd process protects your photos against dust, scratches, etc. You can also make extra back up copies and store them off site, so they will be safe.
ScanDigital.com also offers a video service. They will take old video tapes and put them on DVD. Formats they can convert include VHS, VHS-C, BetaMax, Hi8, MiniDV and Digital 8. That is a great service since VCR’s are hard to find. I have a few old players, but the tapes usually play back all fuzzy. I’ve tried cleaning the heads, but that hasn’t helped. DVD players are very reasonably priced nowadays. I have a few old VHS tapes from when I was in elementary school. Putting them on a DVD might be a good idea.
For both services ScanDigital.com has the following start to finish process in place once you place an order:
1. Your photos are sent to ScanDigital.com via UPS, which they monitor using tracking info
2. Once the order is received, they check it in and enter all contents into their system.
3. Orders are stored in labeled and sealed containers while waiting to be scanned.
4. Each photo is scanned.
5. Scans are reviewed for quality.
6. Editing staff optimizes each photo.
7. Editors review their work for quality.
8. A separate, third editor reviews the digital images for quality.
9. Files are copied onto a CD, DVD, or external hard drive.
10. Orders are finalized and billed.
11. Original photos, digital images and receipt are shipped to you.
12. Order is uploaded to an online gallery for sharing.
13. You receive your order.
Sounds like a great service that I may have to look into.
For a few years now I have been wanting to buy the object oriented book “Design Patterns: Elements of Reusable Object-Oriented Software” by Erich Gamma, Richard Helm, Ralph Johnson and John Vlissides. It’s one of those must have books for any software developer. It’s pretty expensive though. A new copy is almost $50. The Kindle version is even $27. Used copies also average around $25. I did a search on Google to see if there are any free copies out there.
Yes, there are!!!! Go to 4shared.com. It’s a file sharing site. First you have to download and install the software, which is free. Once installed, run the software and search for design patterns gamma. A list of available files comes up, select one and download. Apparently the hardcopy of the book is now available on cd, which is where the downloaded file came from. It seems to contain the full book, which I am now in the process of reading.
In college, I majored in math. When I graduated, I had no idea what I wanted to do. I took a year off to do nothing, but work at a mindless job and relax. After the year was up, I sent out resumes and ended up with a job as a software developer, a perfect fit for me.
Computers are great, software developing is great, but the hardware aspect is beyond me. Taking apart the insides of a computer is not something I can do. All the little pieces inside look the same to me.
If you are gifted with understanding computer hardware, you might be interested in a company called Finpo. They sell printed circuit boards, PCBs. They are of high quality at a low cost. PCB supplies and services are also offered. Online instant quotes are available. Finpo offers rigid boards, flexible boards, MCPCB, rigid-flex boards and HDI boards with blind/buried vias. Specialized PCB’s include probe card, load board, interposer (substrate), and burn-in boards. PCB production is strictly controlled under ISO9001:2008. Software is also used in the production process to ensure the highest quality PCB is produced.
A minimum of five panels is required for an order.
Damaged boards which are the fault of Finpo will be replaced. Refunds minus a non-refundable fifty dollar surcharge fee are available for orders cancelled before a confirmation is received. After confirmation is received, a non-refundable fifty dollar surcharge fee is available if the difference of the initial and final quote is greater than 20%.
Finpo has 33 years of experience in the PCB industry. Industries that use their products include the communications, industrial computer application and automobile industries.