Turning Off the Technology: How a tech unplugs



Being a tech is hard on the mind and the body.  A majority of the job keeps you connected the computer for a large portion of your day. Whether it is working issues or researching more about an industry that is ever-changing and evolving every week, being so connected is a blessing and a curse. Keeping up with technology is like trying to win a marathon on a treadmill.  You are definitely making progress on improving yourself, but it is a race that has no end.  Living in world full of social media websites, blogs from all your favorite personalities, or just finding that next cat video to share with your office, it can easily turn from a way to pass the time into a routine that you don’t even know you have.

Until you miss a few days.

I often find it beneficial to “disconnect,” a term I mean to be synonymous with turning off your gadgets, disconnecting from the internet, and looking out a window instead of a pc monitor.  Otherwise, eventually, you will get burned out.


I enjoy hiking, camping, and just working up a sweat in the mountains.  My personal disconnect is going backpacking.  Backpacking is essentially just planning a hike that will take days, weeks, or even months to finish.  I am still very new to it, but it is quickly turning into a well-looked-forward-to event every year.


James, standing – third from left, with fellow hikers on a 4-day/25-mile/tech-free hike in July 2014. The only electronics they bring on these trips are a gps and walkie talkie for emergencies and a flashlight.

Ironically, the guys I plan the trip with are also in tech fields. They are just as eager to wander around in the woods as I am. There is just something about staring at the stars from the tops of mountains that can really re-align you. Looking around at the world (instead of at your mobile every minute to check your emails, text, and notification) is jarring and strange at first for the tech junkie, but a few days into it you could care less.


That is just my way of disconnecting.  Yours doesn’t have to be as drastic, by any means.  Small things count, too. Plan to take a walk or run around a lake once a week, maybe even  twice a month have a “No Power” family day where you turn off the mobiles, televisions, computer and play board games.  Reclaim your imagination!


Remove yourself from the internet with Just Delete Me


Social media, gaming hubs and other internet websites come and go.  Its very easy to forget to remove your accounts from websites that you don’t use anymore.  Just Delete Me is a site that provides you with direct links to doing just that.

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Just Delete Me is website that is dedicated to you.  They are providing the links and step by step processes to remove personal accounts.  Each one is color coded. Green is easy, yellow is medium, red is difficult, and black is impossible.

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Clicking on the page will take you to the sign in page, that will allow to you to remove your account so there is no searching for it.

Just Delete Me

The Power of Social Media: What Not To Do!


It’s probably safe to say most small business owners understand the importance of having a presence on the web. Perhaps you have a company site, Facebook, Linked In, YouTube, Twitter, or all of the above. If done right, you have an opportunity to find customers and promote your business literally at your fingertips. Great ideas or products from even a small business can quickly spread like wildfire on social media.

One family owned restaurant in Arizona recently was on Gordon Ramsey’s Kitchen Nightmares. Essentially, the show comes in and points out flaws with the intention to give the business feedback to improve while trying to make an entertaining television show. Having an opportunity to get on TV would be a great way to get your business exposure. Unfortunately for the couple who owns this restaurant they were called out on some questionable practices and did not take criticism well. The show recently aired and naturally some people on social media criticized their business practices further.

This provoked the owners to start lashing out at everyone openly on their Facebook page. Word of this spread quickly to other social media sites and started drawing masses of people to their page to see what the commotion was about. The insults and threats only continued from the owners in multiple posts further hurting their business. While watching this drama play out may be entertaining to some, it’s important to remember how quickly things can spread: either good or bad. Forbes has created a good article on tips regarding use of social media in light of this.


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Draw on your screen in Firefox





Have you ever had those days when your trying to explain something to someone and wished you could draw on the computer screen? Or maybe you are like me and give computer support, where being able to draw on the screen can make things clearer for the people we are trying to help. Then there are times when you would like to add comments to the screen and save the results, for reference in the future? If you use the Firefox browser, there is a free add-on that lets you draw or type on any web page and save the screen as a JPG or PNG if you wish.

It’s called Screen Draw and is available at this Mozilla link. When installed it adds a pencil icon to your Firefox toolbar. Clicking the icon opens the toolbar shown on the left.

The toolbar has the functions Clear, Save, Text, Erase, and Brush. There is also a slider to adjust the size of text or of the drawing brush. Configuring of colors and font can be done from the Firefox Add-Ons Manager with the dialog shown in the figure below.

Screen Draw may have fewer features than some commercial programs but it is free and sufficient for situations where you want a simple way to draw or to place comments on a Firefox page.

How to help your online “presence”.


These days, here in 2012, we do not use pickets and radio advertisement as much as we do online advertising.  So how is the best way to create and “online presence” as a small to medium business and be as effective as the large corporations?  This blog will give you some quick ideas that will help you get your name out there.

With social media being a huge part of people’s lives these days, we have to adapt and get on that level as well.  Creating a Facebook Fan Page is a great way to build a relationship and stay in constant touch with your customers.  Unlike going to a webpage where viewers can see it and close out of the browser, posting feeds within Facebook is going to show up in your fans’ feeds whenever you post them.

With social media, a ton of companies these days or using it, but are they doing it correctly and in the most effective ways?  I know that I am constantly seeing signs saying “Follow us on Facebook or Twitter” and I think to myself, “Is this the best way to handle this?” For some Facebook is going to be a better route to take and Twitter may be more suited for following your favorite trending topic or celebrity.  If your business is involved with a hot trending topic however, Twitter can be wildly beneficial.

Another way to get your WWW presence higher and your name more known is to advertise!  People tend to think that those ads on the sides of Google pages are annoying and they never click them, but this is actually not the case. Last year, Google made approximately $40 Billion in revenue by people clicking on these ads. So does this seem like advertisement that does not work?

Blog, blog blog!  People respond to content and items that they enjoy or are interested in.  An easy way to build a relationship with your customers is to have them enjoy visiting your site by reading subjects and content that is worth their time.  More Enjoyable=Likeliness to Return!

There are many other tips, tricks, and strategies to help your reach in this dog-eat-dog world of business, and more may be more suitable to your situation, so feel free to comment on this blog and help pass along your success stories!