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Corny Technology: Welcome to Innovative Iowa

By Steven Shepard, Contributing Columnist

A couple of weeks ago I was in the bustling metropolis of Stanton, Iowa (population: 714), one of the most charming towns I have ever had the pleasure to visit. It is the home town of Mrs. Olson, the iconic figure in Folger’s Coffee commercials — which is why their water towers look so unique (see the photo insert below).

I was working with an independent telephone company client, one of about 1,300 in the U.S. — 250 of which are in Iowa. These independents are typically smaller phone companies, often family-owned, and almost always technologically-advanced.

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Höganäs North America chooses Cisco over Motorola, Nortel, Avaya, and others – Part 1

Don’t you just hate it when you drop your phone and it just stops working? My last phone fell out of my top pocket when I leaned over our pool and even though I got it out in less than 10 seconds and tried to dry it out, it was toast. Well, soggy toast I suppose.

There are times when you need something more. If you’re a manufacturer and you need some ruggedization then you might find it advantageous to look at the Cisco offerings. There are rugged versions of several products: switches, wireless access points and IP phone handsets to name just three. In the video I talk about one of them, the 7925G-EX handset that has been available for a short while now, and is being increasingly adopted by customers.  Read More »

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How to Create Secure and Meaningful Passwords

Shore up your organization’s password security by following these easy guidelines

Dozens of times every day, your employees perform a simple, yet crucial, task: They enter their passwords to log in to their computers, your local network, and the Internet. Just a few brief keystrokes stand between your company’s network and cybercriminals, identity thieves, and disgruntled employees. Unless employees’ passwords are complex, they’re easily guessed by experienced attackers or by their password-breaking computers. Creating meaningful and secure passwords isn’t as difficult as many people think, and it’s critical to the security of your small business network.

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Build a Wireless Network in Four Easy Steps

A wireless LAN is cost-effective, scales easily, and gives users freedom for increased productivity

Today, many small businesses don’t even bother running network cables throughout their office space. Instead of wiring a network jack for every computer on the network, companies simply install a few additional pieces of wireless networking gear to provide ubiquitous wireless connectivity. After the basic network is in place, namely the switch and the router, it’s a matter of taking four basic steps to build a wireless local area network (WLAN) to connect your users to the Internet.

A wireless network offers many benefits to the small business. It’s easier to set up and access than a wired network, and it scales more simply and quickly when adding new users. Wireless LANs also give employees more flexibility to stay online while moving throughout the office, and guest users can connect to the Internet immediately with just a password. Choosing the best wireless LAN solutions for your business is key to building the right network.

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Free Your Customers from Network Tyranny with the Right Network

Error messages. Network outages. Photocopiers that spew toner in your face. These are the things that a bad day at work are made of.

But what happens when one employee has had enough and channels his inner William Wallace? Find out if he frees his fellow co-workers from the tyranny of a network gone bad. Will he enable his team to experience the freedom and enhanced business productivity that a robust network can provide? Read More »

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