Keeping Up Appearances

In the world of business, as in life, itself, appearances can be deceptively important. Appearances can express much more quickly than words, or even actions, what you, or business, is about, and so great care must be taken to cultivate that appearance. Your outward appearance needs to project trustworthiness and competence to your clients or customers in order to make your business thrive, so here are a few tips to reach that lofty goal.

First and foremost, your business, itself, may need a facelift of sorts. All advertising, whether on or off site, needs to be inviting and informative. You want your clients or customers to feel like they can approach you, while simultaneously making it crystal clear what products you produce or what services you provide. Even your company’s name, logo, and slogan must get across to your customer base what it is you do and that you’re worth trusting with that task.

If you’re running a business, you ought to look like it. The head of a company should be dressed as such, and that means a suit or, in a more casual business environment, a dress shirt and slacks. This is the creme de la creme of business attire, after all. Your suit, or slacks, need to be a neutral color, such as black, dark blue, brown, or grey, as anything to vibrant may send the wrong message to potential customers and clients.

Lastly, your employees should be expected to adhere to a dress code. While your first impulse is going to be businesswear, this may not be the best fit. Something more casual will create a more relaxed environment, and relaxation means productivity, so consider something a bit less stuffy, like the offerings of Ann Taylor, to keep it classy without feeling restrictive and hurting morale.

Choose the Best Professional for Your IT Needs

The security and overall processing of your website is too important to trust to just anyone. You must invest time in finding the best professional to assist you. The wrong IT consulting company can cost you too much money and allow security breaches to happen. They can cause you lower sales too if your website is down or it doesn’t allow a customer to checkout correctly.

Overall Experience

Find out about the IT consulting company and their overall level of experience. How long have they been in business? What types of benefits and services do they provide? Do they have up to date tools and techniques to assist you? If it is a large company, how will you know the person you work with has the right skills? Will you work with a team or with an individual?

Ask about education and other work they have performed. Do they have long term customers? How many customers do they take care of right now? You want a solid IT consulting company with plenty to offer. However, you don’t want to work with one that has so many clients it can’t give your business the attention it deserves.

Communication skills have to be high on that list of experience and expertise too. They have to be able to successful share with you what they have found out. They need to be good at evaluating data and also at listening to your needs and requests.

Customised Offers

Will the IT consulting company take the time to create a customised offer for you? This includes security that covers your issues and your needs? Avoid those that use a blanket type of process for all of their customers. While there can be some benefits to what they deliver, it leaves too many pieces uncovered due to the differences between businesses.

The IT consulting company should be able to take a close look at the ins and outs of your business. From there, they can help you to determine next steps. They may be able to identify security problems that are a huge risk that you don’t have covered. They may be able to tell you about upcoming methods that will provide you better overall protection.

There is always going to be some risk, even when you have a great consultant on your side. How are they able to help you reduce risks? Part of what they offer should be to help you foresee any possible risks. Then solution can be put in motion to offset them before any damages to the company have been done.

Fees

Behind the scenes, a quality IT consulting company is very busy and they are collecting information. They are evaluating data and making sure the information they share is credible and current. They are on top of the IT world and all that goes on there. They realise the current problems, challenges, and they find solutions.

All of this takes time and resources and they get paid well for what they can deliver. Make sure you understand how the fee structure will work. You don’t want to be upset when you get a bill from them for services rendered. Try to get a fee scale that is based on them delivering information to fulfil certain objectives.

Other providers will bill you hourly or monthly depending on the level of services they offer to you. They may be hired for a one time job or kept on and accessed at regular intervals for your business. Talk to them about the options and decide what is the best fit for the needs of your business.

Tips To Mind Map in Software Testing

A lot of experts believe that visualization is the best method to understand, analyze, and remember any desirable or important information. Thereafter, there is such technique, called Mind Mapping, can be also used in IT.

Mind Map is the way to clear and graphically represent somebody’s conceptions and thoughts, using different symbols, words, colors, images, and lines. Performing either manual testing or automated testing, the specialist of QA area should firstly figure out the specification and essence of test process. The Mind Map may really assist in this.

Software product testing or mobile testing, being a creative and complex procedure, often requires from testers and developers unusual and specific way of thinking. Such useful technique of brain enhancement as Mind Mapping will significantly simplify the whole deal.

Why Is the Mind Mapping Technique Required in Software Testing?

  • It ensures test coverage.
  • It helps to easily present the management procedure.
  • It improves creativity thinking.
  • It is able to present all information at one location.
  • It is simple way to represent the desired data in an interesting manner.
  • It assists in distinguishing various fields in more attractive way.
  • It is an easy and low-cost operating model for representing a huge amount of data.

The beauty of this technique is that it is not monotonous and always suggests new fresh solutions for, seemingly, traditional test procedures. This model can be applied in order to increase a test team ambition, cope with the daily challenges, improve team planning and structural representations, and represent the huge scope of data in a most effective and understandable way.

How to Use Mind Mapping

  • Define the Release Data and invent the name of the future map.
  • Put together all related to the project requirements and specified information.
  • Select all names of the development team.
  • Select all names of the test team members, as well.
  • Prepare all necessary details which were received through the analyzing.
  • Collect the details and data of the test run.
  • Gather access details, such as credentials and links.

Thus, the mind map may be also represented in an interactive way and significantly help as at the very beginning of the test procedure (e.g., test planning), as at the last stages. Fortunately, today there is a great number of open sources where everyone interested may find different mind mapping tools.

The software testing company encourages such kind of techniques. So, software product testing may be diversified with the creative activity.

To perform mobile testing, desktop testing or web site testing efficiently these methods should be adjusted for each company and each project. QATestLab is independent, offshore software testing company located in Kiev, Ukraine. QATestLab performs testing of products on each stage of software development cycle.

Tips For for Successful Automated Testing

Many experts believe that manual testing is the best way to check the product and detect all errors. However, today this approach is not enough, because of the fast-changing IT solutions and new, more complex systems.

Usually, a lot of time should be spent in order to remove the bugs and errors, hidden in the PHP code. In this case, automated testing may become a real rescue for a tester or programmer who wants to fully debug the system.

Modern methods of the code writing presuppose that a developer plays the role of a tester and execute software testing after each written lines. This is a good practice, especially, when it comes to a large programming project when there is no room for error. Nowadays the developers, before starting to write the system code, create the test code in order to check whether the system operates correctly. This may significantly save both time and money which will be further spent during the development cycle.

There are two popular approaches which are applied during automated testing:

  1. TDD (Test-Driven Development) – involves standard PHP code and requires programming skills;
  2. BDD (Behavior-Driven Development) – presupposes application of the lexical representation of data, understandable for any person.

BDD is intended to check the expected result of the unimplemented functionality, while TDD only shows what should be tested. BDD is useful when the client wants to “join” the development process and check the progress.

Undoubtedly, automated testing has a considerable amount of assistive testing frameworks. Let us consider some of them.

What Are the Frameworks for Successful Automated Testing?

  • Codeception – has a peculiarity to integrate with the development frameworks, such as the Zend Framework, Yii or Symfony2 and allows writing functional, acceptance and unit tests.
  • PHPUnit – ensures the TDD approach through the command line and handy TestCase class and unit testing.
  • PHPSpec – a good example of the BDD approach execution which presupposes writing documentation before proceeding to the test process.
  • Peridot – a plain framework, equipped with the reporters and plugins, includes message-driven architecture.
  • Kahlan – with a small code base, it enables a tester to easily write the unit tests via describe-it syntax.
  • Selenium – a very useful framework for acceptance testing as it may check the system entirely. Also, it may fully simulate the real user behavior.

Finally, it is important to note that, despite the obvious advantages of automation, its application does not mean beta testing replacement.

To perform mobile testing, desktop testing or web site testing efficiently these methods should be adjusted for each company and each project. QATestLab is independent, offshore software testing company located in Kiev, Ukraine. QATestLab performs testing of products on each stage of software development cycle.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles

Things That Every Architect Should Have

Individuals that are just beginning their education in the architect field can easily feel like there a million things that they need to know, and a million more things that they should have ready in their own personal tool bag by the time that they get a job. Overall, it can be a bit overwhelming. That’s why the most experienced architects shortened that list down a bit, providing up and coming architects with the five most important things that they need to have handy in their own personal tool bag.

Free Cad Design Software

Anyone that is in this business has more than likely worked with CAD design software. Those that have a free version have the upper hand on those that do not. The key is to find a company that offers free cad design software that can be used indefinitely. This will guarantee that the cad design software is ready to go anytime that it is needed.

Camera

In addition to free cad design software, every architect needs a good camera. This camera will be used to take inspirational pictures as architects’ travel. Those inspirational pictures can then be used when they need a creative burst. A good camera will also make taking pictures of up and coming projects that are still in the works much easier, and it will give a better quality picture than a smart phone.

Smart Phone

Every architect needs a smart phone. These handy little devices may not be able to replace that amazing free cad design software, but they can do quite a few other things. If the camera needs charged, a smart phone will work in a pinch. If a calculator is lost, there is one on the smart phone.

Smart phones can also help architects find the inspiration that they need to get started on a big project, make communication easier, and they can help give a nice creative outlet thanks to all the fun apps that can be downloaded.

Calculator

Even if you have a smart phone, it’s a good idea to have a good old-fashioned calculator to use. Smart phones can die if they are used and not charged all day, hence why it is not a great idea to depend on a smart phone for everything. Calculations can easily be done in a person’s head, but one slight miscalculation can be a costly mistake, and, for new architects, it can cost them their first job. It’s much easier to simply pick up a calculator to make calculations on.

Scales

It is simply not possible for an architect to have too many scales. Different units of measurement will be needed for different projects, and, over time, some scales may wind up lost or borrowed out. Instead of waiting until the need arises, it is always a great idea to have more than enough scales handy to make sure that there is never a situation where someone in the office needs one and does not have one to use.

Being an architect is a fun, and very rewarding job. These five basic tools are a necessity to every single architect, whether they are just starting out or have been an architect for years and are in the process of upgrading their own personal tool bag.

In addition to these tools, most architects would include things like pens, pencils, tracing paper and a desk that has plenty of space. The large desk is to make sure that there is plenty of room to lay out a project on the desk, and there will still be room to work around it. As time goes on, every architect will discover the perfect tool kit for them, but these five things are a great place to start.

All about Android TV Box

Getting your first Android box is a very exciting moment. If you are like us and enjoy watching the best Movies, TV shows, and video clips, until you get an Android box, you have no idea what you are missing out on.

Being able to open Netflix to catch up on your favorite show, then pause to open a browser and look at the latest football scores is just so cool. An Android TV box in the UK also gives you an option for watching live TV such as the BBC and ITV using free to view services which can be setup via Kodi XBMC.

Not only can you use your Android TV box in the UK but it’s so compact you can take it abroad with you. Having access to your favorite Movies and shows whilst you are away is just another great reason for owning an Android TV box with XBMC.

People of all ages benefit from the options that an Android box opens up. Downloading and playing the latest Android games for kids, or following awesome content for Mum on Pinterest, it has it all.

Another great feature is being able to wipe the box down and start again in the space of few minutes. Updating the box also usually happens automatically with many of the better brands having OTA update service, downloading the latest firmware build directly from their own servers.

Imagine a system where your kids can play angry birds on your TV, you and your friends can watch the latest film and for dinner parties, you can play your favorite Spotify playlists directly from you home theater speakers, all remotely controlled from your connected smartphone!

Once you use an Android TV box in the UK it becomes pretty apparent that you no longer need to rely on owning a DVD player, a TV subscription box or any other type of player to get the content you need. With pretty much every Movie and TV show every created either available from an affordable subscription service or via one of the hundreds of add-ons in Kodi XBMC, owning other equipment becomes unnecessary. This gives you the chance to have your TV area clutter free, with just one Android box sitting nicely ready to play.

Almost all Android TV boxes come with some sort of audio output too. And some great models have Optical Audio out. Having this means you can enjoy superb cinema sound when hooked up to your existing home theater system. Dolby DTS and 5.1 are all supported by the inbuilt Kodi media system.

So, the benefits of owning an Android TV box are huge. More TV, more Movies, all the latest social media apps. Music streaming services, internet browsing, and even Skype voice calling. Take the plunge today and bring your front room into the future of TV, with just one little, awesome box!

How to Implement a Voice Assistant

Siri and Google Now have been in the wild for a while now and Microsoft recently came out with its own take on a personal voice assistant – Cortana. While these digital assistants are useful sometimes it is undeniable that voice isn’t the most convenient way to interact with your phone. Digital assistants have largely remained a fancy gimmick on high-end phones.

There are two primary reasons digital assistants haven’t taken off on mobile platforms –

  • Using voice commands is just plain awkward in public places and public places is where people mostly use their phone.
  • If one were to pull their phone and push a button before they can talk to their phone, they might as well push that extra button and see what is on the calendar instead of asking the assistant.

Amazon, a company which largely played a ‘me-too’ role in consumer product space had a totally different take on voice assistants. They dreamed of and came up with a new product category altogether when they launched Echo – an always on, cloud powered voice assistant for home.

Echo (also called Alexa) was designed by Amazon to be a product that stays at home because Amazon figured that voice assistants are best suited for home usage. This is evident by the fact that they didn’t even bother to put a battery in it which is a bold move in today’s world of mobile gadgets. Then they made it insanely easy to get Echo’s attention. You just wake her up with a wake word (Alexa or Amazon are the only supported wake words for now) and then issue whatever command you want. Echo comes with seven sensitive microphones and can hear you from more than 10 feet away even in a noisy room. It can hear you even when it is playing music or talking to you. By removing the two major hurdles listed above, Amazon created a voice assistant that is actually useful and fun to use.

Like a phone that can do a whole bunch of things by installing apps, Echo can be used for many purposes too. It can play music, answer trivia, control smart devices, set alarms, manage calendars etc. I often hear people questioning the utility of Echo because their phone can do pretty much everything Echo can do. That was my first reaction to the product too but once I started using Echo, it slowly got on to me. I understood the power of an always connected voice assistant that I can just talk to from anywhere in the house without having to push any buttons.

Take setting a timer while cooking, for example. Previously, I would have to wash my hands, dry them, pull my phone, activate Siri and ask her to set a timer. She would do it and when the timer goes off, I would hear a faint sound on my iPhone’s tiny speakers. Compare that to the convenience of just saying ‘Alexa, set a timer for 30 seconds’ and getting a notification that can be heard all over the house (yes, Echo comes with very good speakers). Once you get used to the freedom and convenience Echo offers, using a smart phone feels like an ordeal and every other digital assistant feels like they are from 1970s.

This is not to say Echo is the dream AI product from the future. It does manage to annoy you quite a bit sometimes by not being able to answer basic questions and not responding to you in a loud room. Echo’s ability to answer general trivia questions is fairly limited.

To conclude, I think Amazon finally figured out how to make digital assistants useful and if you are one of those people who are skeptical about its usefulness, I would strongly recommend trying Echo for a little while and you would realize how inferior every other digital assistant is. Sure it can annoy you once in a while but you would eventually learn to start living with her. In fact, I liked mine so much that I bought a second Echo for my bed room.

Tips To Keep The Life Of Your Electronics

Maybe you’ve searched for a long time for a good cleaning agent for your electronics. You want something that is chemical-free and non-toxic, something that’s non-abrasive and that will last a long time. That might seem like a tall order, and perhaps you’ve thought you need to find several different cleaners that will fit your needs. You’ll be happy to know that one product can do everything you need it to do while keeping your electronics’ screens looking brand new.

Screen Cleaners Extend The Life Of Your Electronics

Regardless of whether you have cell phones, iPads, TVs, or laptop computers, or all the devices under the sun, you have spent a lot of your hard-earned money on these devices. You want to keep them looking sharp and operating as long as possible. Replacing them can be very expensive. Some electronics need to be replaced sooner than normal because of lack of care and upkeep.

A very simple way to keep your devices lasting longer is to clean them regularly with products like screen cleaners, eliminating not only dust and grime, but also germs and bacteria.

Other Ways To Extend The Life Of Your Electronics

– turn them off when you aren’t using them

– don’t leave your electronics by something extremely hot, like a furnace

– don’t leave your electronics by something freezing, like a freezer

– don’t leave your electronics exposed to the elements, like in the sun or on a patio or deck

– don’t leave your devices in the car

– take advantage of the cases and protectors that are on the market

– keep them ventilated, especially laptops and gaming consoles

– with Apple products, make sure the device says it’s ready to be unplugged before you disconnect any cables

– keep your device protection up to date (antivirus, firewalls, etcetera)

– don’t keep your electronics on dirty surfaces, like the floor

– dust off your electronics once a month or so and then try to do a deep clean once every three to six months or so

– a more advanced tactic is to take apart your device for a deep clean, like taking the battery out of a phone and cleaning the connectors, but that’s solely up to personal comfort level

– don’t overcharge or abuse your devices, stick to only using what you need or charging what you need

– don’t cheap out too much, studies have shown that if you buy too cheap you end up paying more in the long run when you have to replace the device at triple the frequency

The Pristine Screen Solution

Our screen cleaners offer you the perfect solution if you’re looking for a way to clean the screens of your electronics in a way that’s non-toxic, non-abrasive and long-lasting. This ensures that the screens of your electronics are being cleaned in a way that is safe for you and your family, as well as safe for your equipment.

Cute Names and Passwords for Your WiFi

Your home WiFi network can be an opportunity to show your personality and get creative. When neighbors and their visitors search for wireless connections in the area, they’ll see the name that you have chosen. Sure, it’s not as obvious to passersby as the exterior paint or landscaping, but it’s definitely a part of how you are perceived by neighbors. If you live in a crowded apartment complex, you may be known only by your music volume and your WiFi name. A creative password is also essential to make sure that your connection is safe and private. Follow these tips for setting up an epic local network connection.

Get creative with the name.
Please don’t leave the default string of letters and numbers. While it may feel like you’re keeping the connection anonymous, anybody who looks at the signal strength on their device can make a good guess. Walk down the street with your phone searching for connections, and you can reliably identify most of the homes on the block, just by the signal strength as it peaks and fades. Like the email address you first made in middle school, the wireless router is an opportunity for unprofessional flourishes of creativity. Even if you just want to make a pair of breasts with parentheses and periods, only the neighbors can judge you. Consider referencing pop culture or your favorite book series, and you may become the coolest person at the next neighborhood block party.

Some people use their network name as a way to send messages to neighbors, which can come off as passive aggressive. “PickUpYourDogPoo” may get a laugh from neighbors who share your frustration, but someone who takes offense could respond unpredictably. To get a more consistently positive response, stick to puns and pop culture like “Hide Yo Kids Hide Yo WiFi.”

Get creative (in the right way) with the password.
When making passwords for your different online accounts, you often have to include capital letters, numbers, and symbols. The result is that people have been trained to think of passwords as variations on single words. Substituting an “at sign” for the letter “a,” however, doesn’t make a password significantly more secure. Similarly, it’s usually the first letter of a password that we capitalize. These passwords are also tedious to explain to guests, since you have to explain all the substitutions and which letters are capitalized. Instead of depending on numbers and symbols, think of a string of three random words. Unrelated words are much harder to guess than the usual substitutions and password variations. Ideally, your WiFi password should be very difficult to guess and very easy to explain to guests.

Keep theses tips in mind when setting up your home wireless network, and your connection can give you a feeling of warmth and accomplishment every time you sign on. The clever handle that you haven’t used since AIM can give your entire neighborhood a chuckle of enjoyment. When you know you have a winning combo, get an extra antenna to boost the signal strength throughout your home and further down the street.

The Reason IT Education Solutions Are Important

Technology affects all aspects of our lives nowadays, from the work we do right through to the way we do it. So much has changed in recent decades that generations at school today are far more adept at using these technological features than preceding age groups, and this trend is set to continue.

In education today, IT education is not only about teaching students and pupils what they need to learn to advance in the modern world, but is also about how various tools and techniques can help them learn more efficiently. Here are some of the main reasons why IT education solutions are so important.

Firstly, it is important to put in place an IT solution for schools as it can help students get the most out of learning. With many classes today utilising various devices and technologies to learn, ensuring that these are being used in the most efficient way possible to maximise the learning experience is very important.

Devices such as smart boards and tablets all have their role in the classroom, but being set up with right software and cloud computing options can make the difference between implementing new technology just for the sake of it – and often to great expense – and implementing it cost effectively and for maximum impact.

With more and more young people being extremely adept at using technology in the first place, having a solution that can meet their expectations can also make a huge difference for an educational institution. Whether primary, secondary or higher education, students can become more engaged in lessons where technology is used correctly and in an engaging, modern way.

The importance of great IT education solutions also rolls over into the independent research and leisure time of pupils or students at an educational institution. Although many devices used in the classroom can enhance learning, having great software and cloud computing options in place to facilitate independent study and research is extremely beneficial.

This can enhance learning in many ways and help the school meet its targets in many different areas of learning. Again, this can help encourage curiosity and motivation to learn for a technology-orientated generation.

The next way that IT education solutions are so important is for the impact that they have on teachers and other staff at school, improving their ways of working. Schools and educational institutions are busy, creative and constantly-evolving organisms, and any IT solution needs to be able to adapt along with the institution’s changing needs.

Tools such as Google for Schools mean that not only can students take advantage of the benefits of technology in the classroom, but so can the staff. This can assist the ease of lesson preparation for teachers, coordination of lesson plans between teachers managing the same classrooms, and accurate records for attendance and pupil performance maintained by staff at the school.

Many modern cloud based tools are extremely collaborative and facilitate greater information sharing and record keeping. For institutions looking to improve efficiency in the workplace for the benefit of the institution as a whole – students, staff and results – then implementing these solutions can make a huge defence.

IT education solutions have a huge role to play in modern education, and finding a service provider that can deliver these can make all the difference for an institution. For schools looking to make a huge difference for their staff and their learns, time should be spent looking for a company that is dedicated to helping your institution take advantage of all that technology has to offer.

This could include new devices, a new IT infrastructure and the integration of cloud computing into the everyday lives of students and staff. As technology and innovation constantly moves forward, this can help any institution reap great rewards in the present and in the future.