February 2013

In this issue. . .

~ Introducing the New Office
~ Cloud Infrastructure
~ Twitter Hacked

Twitter Hacked

Twitter confirmed Friday that it got hacked and that the attackers may have gained access to 250,000 user accounts. the attackers may have stolen user names, email addresses and encrypted passwords belonging to 250,000 users. Twitter reset the passwords to the compromised accounts and sent emails advising affected users. Just another reminder that it's prudent to have complex passwords and to change them frequently.

Monthly Quote

“You can buy a person's hands but you can't buy his heart. His heart is where his enthusiasm, his loyalty is.”

~Stephen Covey

Follow Us!

Microsoft has just released their new Office software. We've been test-driving it for you and have found some really cool new features we'd like to share with you.

Word: The new Word has the capability to edit PDFs!! Word now lets you open a PDF the same as if you were opening a .docx file, make changes to it, then save it again back to PDF format (or, if you prefer, something else). It's unbelievably handy, whether for making changes to a contract, filling in a form, or recreating a document.

Excel: New features allow you to easily visualize and analyze your data. There's a "quick analysis" button that surfaces when you highlight a group of cells that shows how your data would look in a graph or chart - hover over that option and the chart is instantly displayed. Another time-saving feature is "flash fill" - Excel will notice if you're doing the same thing repeatedly on a worksheet - like cutting and pasting elements of a single cell into multiple cells. You can use it to have Excel automatically fill in, or repeat this action throughout the sheet.

Outlook: Outlook Charms - Along the margin in Outlook 2013 are icons for email, calendar, contacts and task list. They let you toggle between these programs. The best part is, they let you hover and peek, similar to the "quick analysis" feature in Excel. Say you are in email, deciding whether to accept an invitation to an event. Instead of going back and forth between the email and calendar apps, you can hover over the calendar icon to peek at the calendar without leaving the email.

PowerPoint: "Presenter View" is by far the best new feature of PowerPoint. Why didn't they think of this before? The new mode shows what's being projected on the big screen, the next slide and has a field for notes so you know what to say during each slide. You can also zoom into a slide, and use a computer's camera to record practice sessions. It also has a timer to keep you focused during your presentation.

Leveraging Economy of Scale: How Cloud Infrastructure can provide long-term savings

Many, if not most, small businesses, non-profits and local government agencies find themselves having to balance the need to secure their networks and their data with the reality of a limited budget. While the first generation of Infrastructure As A Service (IaaS) cloud computing did little more than rent you virtual machines, competition is driving newer players into providing higher levels of functionality.

A cloud IaaS service provides a large environment where the vendor can procure best-of-breed tools, installed and maintained per best practices, and then license your use of only the portions you need. The economy of scale driven by the larger environment can, under the right circumstances, allow an IaaS vendor to buy these tools, ‘rent’ them to you at a profit, and still cost you less over time than it would have cost you to achieve comparable levels of protection or functionality.

High availability, long term archiving, content filtering and blocking, intrusion detection, edge virus and malware removal, enterprise firewall and VPN functionality; with our NetCloud IaaS service, these tools can all centrally managed and maintained with no capital expenditure and with little to no overhead over and above the cost of licensing.

Is your network a good candidate for going to the cloud? We can help you find out.