Groupware and Online Collaboration: Collaboration Series #4
This article is the fourth of a series of articles exploring specific aspects of groupware. The brief informational articles in this series discuss some of the technologies associated with groupware, as well as some of the characteristics of groupware. Some of these characteristics may go hand in hand with business collaborative needs. Other characteristics go beyond what some groupware providers have to offer. The purpose of these articles is to equip the groupware user or investigator with helpful knowledge about the product in order to enable more effective use or to lead the investigator to the groupware service he or she is looking for. This fourth article explores the ability of groupware to facilitate online collaboration.
Fast Car Knoppix
Small can be beautiful! Working with Knoppix for the past two years has been a joy. Two terms to describe this distribution, simple, elegance. See Knoppix is one of the many operating systems that runs from the CD, so it doesn?t have the hardware conflicts associated with many instruction sets between hardware and software.
Linux Dual Boot-How To Format
Just the thought of a duel-boot scares many people away, but over the years it?s developed into an easier process. Most people are running Windows, so I?m assuming it?s your choice of preference:
Linux ? Keyboard Or Mouse
Just stress testing one of the latest Linux distributions. Been testing it for about two months. You know, Linux has advanced some distance since 1992-1993. It looks great! Because Linux is customizable, I decided to change a few of the resident commands. These were not wholesale changes and everything worked out o.k. So I started thinking again. You know, that can lead to solutions you can?t get out of. In this instance, everything worked like a trusty timepiece.
The Religion And Philosophy Of Small Internet Business
I have always had a tendency to focus on the positive. We, all of us, know the negative details in society and governments. So why not focus on solutions? Most self-actualized grownups even solve problems in this manner.
Chances are we'll always have the mammoth corporations. Large corporations have their good and bad points. Click? Want to strike back at the aristocracy? Develop and advertise a business website. And it does not matter what country you are from either. Advertise your specialty 24-7-12.
Think Of This
Think of this, first we had the HAM Radio, then the bbs and now the Internet. Linux and the various other x systems are the next evolutionary step toward enhancing Global 2-way communications. And the best part, its virtually free!
Microsoft CRM for Large Corporation ? Security
Microsoft Business Solutions CRM proved to be reliable solution in the whole spectrum of industries and market niches: transportation & logistics, education, recruiting & placement, supply chain management, pharmaceutical, oil & gas, aerospace & defense, manufacturing, wholesale & retail. When corporation is looking into CRM application to choose from ? one of the fist questions is security. In this small article we?ll try to give you the highlights on the most typical questions we are receiving in the security area.
Exactly What Does FTP Stand for and What Can it do for Me?
FTP stands for "file transfer protocol". FTP is basically a way of sending files over the Internet.
My Experience - Making a Vision into Reality
Disclaimer: All the thoughts expressed are my views only! Your perception might differ...
Microsoft Great Plains & CRM in Transportation & Logistics ? Overview
Microsoft Business Solutions Great Plains and MS CRM (client relation management system) are very popular in various industries and market niches. In previous article we described Microsoft Great Plains implementation for transportation & logistics company. Having more material, we would like to share with you how you can leverage Microsoft Business Solutions products to automate your business. We?ll try to be both technical and business processes specific and be laconic to comply the rules of tiny article.
Did You Ever Want to Completely Erase Everything on Your Computer?
Did you ever want to erase everything on your computer? This is a program I found that does that for you quickly and easily.
Online PowerPoint Presentation ? Convert PowerPoint to Flash
Although we don?t know whether Microsoft ever envisioned such a big market about PowerPoint on its first release. Today this software is impacting profoundly on education and corporation?s activities in the way that nobody could ignore. With a wealth of visual and audio effects people rely on it to express their ideas, plans more intuitively with more effective communication outcomes.
The Hidden Power of Online Manual
Writing software manuals is boring, isn?t it? We often think: ?My software is easy to use. The user interface is intuitive. Why should I waste so much time for writing the document which nobody reads anyway?? Sometimes it?s true ? I?ve never read the WinZip or Internet Explorer manuals ? everything seems clear without explanations. Nevertheless, even if your manual doesn?t help to your software users, it may help to you. Publish your manual online and turn its hidden power into the real benefits for your business.
Online Manual Makes Your Web Site Visible
User manual is a huge bunch of words, the highly targeted words, which are specific for your software market. For instance, if you develop a database management system, its user guide will certainly contain such words as ?database?, ?query?, ?transaction?, ?table?, ?record?, and etc. On the other hand, people use these words in their queries when they are looking for a database management solution on the Google, Yahoo, or other search engine. Let the interested people to find your web site and your product. Upload your manual on your web server and make it available for indexing by search engine spiders. This area specific content will make your web site and your software more visible to potential customers. Making the user guide available online will increase your web site rank in relevant search results and will bring highly targeted traffic to web your site. Let the manual to work not only for your users, but for you as well.
Online Manual Saves Your Time
A picture worth a hundred words. Those who are engaged in user support know this for sure. When replying to user concerns, very often we have to write sentences like this ?Open the Document settings dialog. Choose the External modules tab. Select the ?ABC Spell Checker? in the module list. Enter your registration key and verification code in the corresponding text fields which will appear at the bottom of the window. Then, press Activate?. If your application is simple the user will likely understand you right and will do everything as you have explained. However, if your application is a complex system with lots of setting windows which behave differently in various modes, the user may be puzzled which window and which fields do you mean. In this case you risk getting into a long conversation by repeatedly explaining the same things again and again.
The screenshot could be a very helpful illustration of your explanations. You may run your application, go to the certain window, open that tab page, activate the corresponding item in the list. Then make the screenshot of the window by using Alt+PrtSc key combination or another screen capture tool, save the picture in a file, and finally attach it to your message. Sometimes it?s also necessary to add callouts, annotations and other enlightenments to the screenshot picture. Thus, you have to launch your image editor and to manually draw all the elements required. As you see, it may takes up to a half hour to reply to a single message only. And how many messages are yet in the queue?
Having the screenshots prepared is a good approach which may save your time. But having screenshots already prepared together with callouts, explanations, and annotations is a great approach which will save you much more time. Most likely, you have all that stuff prepared in your software manual but it?s not very polite to reply to the user: ?Read that fantastic manual?. User may have no idea where the manual is on the PC and on what page is the looked-for solution located. On the other hand, you may also have no time to manually cut particular pages with screenshots and related instructions from the manual and to attach them to each support message.
The solution is easy. Put your manual on your web site in the form of HTML pages. Make all the pictures, screenshots with callouts, descriptions, and instructions accessible for every user. When you are processing another support request, simply insert an URL link to the appropriate page of your online manual and add just a few clarification words ? more words and pictures are already on that page. You will save much time and nerves because you will be sure that the user is looking at the same thing which you are describing. At the same time, the user will get a fast solution which is supported by clear pictures and neat instructions.
Online Manual Makes Your Products Trustworthy
Besides the users get the faster and more helpful support, they also see that you did this tedious job ? writing the handy and well structured manual with great screenshots and clear explanations. They know that this job is boring and developers don?t like to do it. Therefore, if you did it and if you did it perfectly, it means that you respect your customers, not only their money. Good manual means that you consider your business and product seriously yourself. This helps your business to look more credible and serious. So, make your manual available online and prove your respect to your existing and prospective users. Make them trusting in you and in your product before they even download a demo copy of it.
Online Manual Brings Sales
As we see, the software manual which is a part of your web site generates a targeted traffic. The people may easily find your product because online help makes your web site more visible in relevant search results on the search engines. Those new visitors get more loyal when they see a well done help system. Also, if a prospect experiences difficulties with your software and asks for technical support, you may easily resolve the issue by referring the user to a certain page of your online help. With just a one click the user will see screenshots and explanations which will help them to settle the case. So, you have a motivated and targeted visitor, who feels loyal to your company and products, and whom you can easily help in case of a technical problem. The probability of such visitor ordering a license is several times higher than of the average one.
Microsoft CRM for Corporate Business ? Working Offline
If your company has regional and worldwide operations, you might already realized that it is very hard to get decent internet connection in your remote locations. In this small article we will try to give you highlights on how to implement Microsoft Business Solutions CRM for worldwide operations with restricted internet connection.
Microsoft CRM USA Nationwide Remote Support
Remember old good days when your company probably had Great Plains Dynamics? If you are in San Francisco Bay Area ? you had local Great Plains Software partner consulting company, who served you basically coming onsite and charging you four hours minimum, even if the problem deserved 5-min fix? This was at the end of 20th century and remote support technologies were not very advanced ? Citrix was making good progress and taking market over from Symantec PCAnywhere. Today, when Microsoft Terminal Server and Citrix are remote support standards and IT department uses them to host application server for nation-wide and world-wide users, you should probably be thinking of getting remote support for your ERP and CRM systems. In this small article we?ll take a look at Microsoft CRM remote support, customization, reporting, implementation and integration.
More Articles from Software Information:
Huddle Up; Groupware on Three
It could just be me, but my experiences with document collaboration remind me of a football game. It sounds crazy, I know, but working with a group and sending emails off to other members of the group caries with it that familiar uneasy sensation of Thanksgiving Day football games, where I often play quarterback and just as often wonder whether members of my family will catch the pass, and if they do, what they will do with the ball. Using groupware in document collaboration is similar to having a game plan that separates the "Turkey Bowl" family football team from the real competitors.
Ukraine IT Myths Dispersed
While Ukraine is becoming a new popular IT outsourcing destination, there are still many myths about it and no clear understanding of the opportunities outsourcing to Ukraine can present. Let us look closely at some of those myths and find out whether there is any truth behind them.
Microsoft CRM Integration with Microsoft Retail Management System (RMS) ? Overview
Microsoft Client Relation Management system (Microsoft CRM) and Microsoft RMS are both Microsoft SQL Server based applications, however historically Microsoft was purchasing industry leading software applications, such as QuickSell which is now Microsoft RMS. So, RMS design fundamentals were minted a long time before Microsoft CRM. But, still integration between the two is straightforward and what you need is consultant, who is familiar with both systems structures and customization scenarios. Microsoft CRM is currently integrated with Microsoft Great Plains and will be integrated with Microsoft Navision in the close future, RMS integration is not planned to our knowledge, so you should seek third party solutions or create your own integration. We see the need for such the integration when you sell on account in RMS and have customer support call center automated with Microsoft CRM. Let us give you highlights:
The Bluebird Project
The objective for Zandi Digital is to make available clever programs to end-users that want and need something more diverse. Bluebird is the current application being developed by Zandi Digital. Bluebird will have the ability to compress multimedia(image, audio, or video) and text into one single file and later opened for reading or editing with Bluebird on Microsoft Windows® operating systems. A illustration is at http://www.videonotepad.net
Microsoft Great Plains customization ? Freight Forwarding/Transportation industry example
Microsoft Business Solutions Great Plains version 8.5, 8.0, 7.5, Great Plains eEnterprise/Dynamics 7.0, 6.0, Dynamics C/S+ 5.5 and 5.0 serve USA, UK, South Africa, Australia, Middle East horizontal market. As being relatively inexpensive solution, it is reasonably open to be customizable to fit specific industry niche. In this small article we'll give you highlight on how Great Plains could serve specific vertical demands of transportation and freight forwarding industry
Begun, The Browser Wars Have
As Mozilla Firefox nears 10% market share, with well over 25 million downloads direct from the makers website, and goodness knows how many through other sources, Microsoft announces that it will be releasing IE 7 ahead of schedule. Originally scheduled for release with Microsoft's new Longhorn operating system in 2006, it seems that Microsoft are reacting to the run away success that Firefox has had over the last few months. But is Microsoft's announcement just a response to Firefox's success, or is it truly a commitment by the software giant to improve the browsing experience of the masses?
Oracle Development: JDeveloper 10G ? Java, J2EE, EJB, MVC, XML - Overview For Programmer
In 2004 Oracle, Inc. made its new step toward J2EE application development simplification, releasing new RAD Oracle JDeveloper 10G. First of all JDeveloper 10G is targeted to rapid web application building, utilizing all the achievements of J2EE World: web service, EJB, MVC frameworks, XML, etc. Oracle JDeveloper 10G allows you to conduct all full development cycle for complex system ? from UML diagram-based concept to debugging, profiling and deployment.
Microsoft CRM ? Typical Customizations
Microsoft CRM was designed to be easily customizable. Microsoft CRM Software Development Kit (MS CRM SDK) which you can download from Microsoft website contains descriptions of the objects or classes, exposed for customization. It has sample code in C# and partially in VB.Net. In Visual Studio.Net you can analyze all the classes, used by Microsoft developers to create MS CRM - you will discover that most of them are not documented in MS CRM SDK. Microsoft will not support your customization if you use undocumented class or do direct SQL access to CRM database.
Groupware: Avoid the Ad Hoc Shuffle
Free PDF Publishing Software
In a previous article, I wrote about OpenOffice which an excellent suite of Free Office software which is in the Public Domain.
CROOK: A Methodology for the Refinement of Forward-Error Correction
Table of Contents
New Web-Based HR Tool is Max From NAS, Hannibal, and InfoLink
Three highly respected names in Human Resources have joined forces to provide companies with a revolutionary blend of services that make the hiring process more efficient and effective. The partnership joins three companies: NAS Recruitment Communications, a recognized leader in the specialized field of human resource communications, Hannibal, Inc., a software development firm specializing in recruiting automation solutions, and InfoLink Screening Services, Inc., a nationwide leader in employment background screening, drug testing and physical exam services.
Microsoft Great Plains e-Commerce ? additional considerations for programmer
Microsoft Great Plains, designed back in 1990th as database transferable and graphical platform independent ERP application ? Great Plains Dynamics/Dynamics C/S+/eEnterprise. For eCommerce developer the most important is to understand Great Plains tables structure and business processes in Sales Order Processing, Accounts Receivables, Inventory Control (inventory items allocation, backordering, etc), posting to Bank Reconciliation and General Ledger. And this is where Great Plains structure seems to be not transparent. Let's give you highlights:
Not All Project Management Software is Created Equal
The purpose of Project Management Software is to provide an environment in which a group of people can work together on joint projects. Most projects involve the development and implementation of new ideas, and these ideas have to be presented, evaluated, and revised.
Cisco Certification: Introduction To ISDN, Part V
The major reason I recommend getting your hands on real Cisco equipment rather than a simulator is that real Cisco routers give you the chance to practice and learn show and debug commands.
Microsoft Great Plains Accounting/ERP Implementation ? Finance Industry Customization Example
Microsoft Business Solutions Great Plains is very generic accounting application out of the box and has multiple modules to address specific horizontal or vertical market requirements. At the same time Great Plains, now being moved on MS SQL Server platform allows you to deploy standard tools to customize and fit to these requirements, when you don't need rich custom functionality, just few touches. In this small article let's take a look at finance industry.
Microsoft Small Business Manager Customization Options - Overview
Microsoft Business Solutions Small Business Manager is Great Plains Dexterity based application and successor and small business market niche version of Microsoft Great Plains. Microsoft Great Plains itself has variety of customization and integration tools: Integration Manager, VBA/Modifier, Great Plains Dexterity, SQL Server stored procedures to name a few. By one reason or another MBS decided to restrict Small Business Manager and do not provide VBA/Modifier, restricted Great Plains ReportWriter version and didn't include Great Plains Dexterity IDE installer on SBM CD.
Navision Attain Database access via C/ODBC in ASP.NET Application
Navision Software was purchased by Microsoft and now it is supported by Microsoft Business Solutions together with Microsoft Great Plains, Axapta, Solomon, Microsoft Retail Management System and Microsoft CRM. Navision has extremely strong position on mid-size European and US markets, plus it has excellent manufacturing solution. Our goal is to help IT departments to support and tune Navision with in-house expertise and skills.
The topic of this article is Navision database access from ASP.NET application via C/ODBC interface. Our goal will be ASPX page accessing Navision Customers.
A Symons Mark II Function Point Counting Example
I provide, here clear explanations and a count of function points, using the Symons Mark II method.
Software Companies: Generate New Revenue Streams and Decrease Costs with Custom e-Learning Content
It's no secret that software companies operate in a very competitive space where rivalry is increasingly fierce and where profit margins can be razor thin. New, smaller software companies are sprouting up each month and the leading software companies continually make strong advancements forward leveraging massive cash flow reserves. This cycle makes it difficult for the mid-sized software company to compete because (a) they don't typically have the cash flow necessary to take giant leaps forward in the industry and (b) because they need to continually move forward to stay ahead of the smaller software companies that are vying for their slot in the marketplace. Consequently, making the jump from an unknown to a mainstream brand can prove to be very difficult for the mid-sized software company.