Newsletter 10th February 2011

We’re playing catch-up this week as Real Life got in the way of producing the newsletter on Monday. We’re sure you understand – real life has a habit of biting us all on the bum now and again.

Do you travel for work?
Shrewsbury or San Francisco, Glasgow or Geneva, near or far you’ll still want access to your usual online ports of call. The beauty of web-based services is that with access to a browser (whether via your phone, laptop, hotel lobby or internet cafe) you can keep as up to date as you need to. Of course now Blackberries and smart phones have made remote email access a cinch, but there are plenty of other online services you might want to connect to – social media accounts, shared document services, website or blog admin, to name just the most popular. We can explain these, set them all up, give you a trial run and tailor them to your needs and those of your colleagues. A client currently hopping around America (well not literally but you get the idea – that would just be exhausting) is very pleased with Zimbra in particular, and its versatility in allowing her to connect to her email in the various ways that her various surroundings allow. Would you like a free trial of Zimbra or any other remote service we offer? Email us now and we’ll sort it all out for you in the blink of an eye.

Competitive advantage – what’s not to like?
Research from Gartner discussed here by Linux for Devices tells us that companies are turning to open source software to gain competitive advantage, ie not just because of the money savings, but because the software itself allows them to gain an edge on their competitors. Research Director at Gartner Laurie Wurster said that these companies view open source as “having much greater value than simply getting something for free,” and this is a very important point. The money savings can be very significant and quite a lure, but that’s not really the point of open source – the freedom and flexibility it offers, together with the quality of the programs and the excellent and highly responsive support offered by the community (which we digest and turn into a swift response to our clients should a problem arise) make it a very attractive proposition. Nearly a quarter of Gartner’s respondents used open source across all departments, and that number is surely set to rise. Would you like to try out open source, or expand your repertoire? If you’d like to get in touch we can help you decide which programs would work for you, and then if you’d like us to we can do the techy bit for you.

Other bits and pieces that have caught our eye this week include:

  • *This Dell article about the pros and cons of desktops vs laptops – watch out for out blog article on this, coming soon
  • * We’ve signed up to, a new portal helping people setting up in business. We’ve signed up as business helpers. Look, that’s our logo there, right next to Dell!
  • * We’ve also pledged our support to Business in Bloom, a campaign to get HALF A MILLION new businesses started this year. Sorry to shout, but that’s an awful lot of new businesses. Can you offer support to new businesses?
  • * Are you coming to Herefordshire Open Source Day? You can read the official press release via that link, but in a nutshell it’s an opportunity to come along to Hereford town centre on Saturday 26th March and poke and prod open source software for yourself and learn a bit more about it. Our technical director Kevin Dontenville will be there flying the company flag. Please come along and support the event, and leave with a few freebies.

And finally:

Confess via iPhone – the Catholic Church gives its blessing to The Confession program, which does what it says on the tin. £1.19 through iTunes.

and a Twitter joke via @markblundellF1
A man comes to doctor: “I am addicted to Twitter”, he says. Doctor says: “I am sorry, I don’t follow you”. Groan.

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