Fun with OpenSource

In General, Open Source, Software by Michael SheehanLeave a Comment

Some interesting opensource items that I have been playing with:

  • JitterBit Integration Server – pretty nice stand alone integration server with various types of hooks
  • activeCollab – a flat out opensource “attack” at BaseCamp
  • SugarCRM – an extremely solid implementation of a CRM solution (although I’m slammed with a upgrade error due to my hosting provider having an old version of mySQL)
  • Cerberus Helpdesk – very nice HelpDesk solutions. Great for a small biz (free license). I use it
  • Owl KnowledgeBase – nice document management system but I need to dig down on its features more
  • KnowledgebasePublisher – great KnowledgeBase app…very simple and it works well
  • PHPSurveyor – online survey like surveymonkey. haven’t visited in a while.

I frankly think that there is a lot of value in understanding some of the established and new releases of opensource software. I find that frequently, companies throw big money at expensive solutions, when there are opensource solutions available that can do just as good of a job at a fraction of the price. The only drawbacks are the fact that if you want an end-to-end solution for something, you might be at a loss. Some things can be patched or strung together. My goal is not to look for huge enterprise solutions for large corporations, but rather, understand how opensource or paid-for opensource can be used to acheive a solution or success.

I think that a lot of people look at the software first and then see if it will fit, instead of trying to understand what the issue(s) is(are) and then work to identifying a solution. E.g. “PeopleSoft will solve all of your needs” … when it should be, what truly is the issue, are there other smaller packages that can acheive the same result without having the mass expenditure to only use a fraction of the product, or, getting hammered as well on the hidden costs of upgrading supporting applications or technology as well as integration with legacy systems.

Read More

Trying to re-engage…

In General by Michael Sheehan2 Comments

I’m trying to see if I can get back to doing more things with this blog…life always throws you in different directions. Since the last post about Anti-Spyware software, I have been busy evaluating all sorts of different technologies and software (including the fact that I’m using a Firefox Extension called Performancing to post to this blog).
Stay tuned…more fun to come!!!

Anti-Spyware Tools (recommended)

In General, Security, Software by Michael SheehanLeave a Comment

There are two anti-spyware tools that are free that I recommend all Windows users install:

Both of these tools are free, however, you need to be diligent in terms of updating their “definitions” regularly (part of the price of using “freeware” tools).

I usually go to one of my favorite Windows program sites called MajorGeeks to get the latest versions of Shareware/Commercial/Freeware programs. I have linked the two programs above to their associated listings on MajorGeeks (if the links do not work, just go to MajorGeeks and search for those programs).

Read More

Bringing life to an old laptop

In General, Hardware by Michael Sheehan6 Comments

More fun in techdom. My wife’s laptop hard drive was filling up…becoming more fragmented…and therefore, slowing down. I decided to give it the gift of a new life. I purchased a 100gig hard drive with a 16mb cache. Installing on a dell is a snap…sorta. My problem was, I didn’t see the adapter that was attached to the old drive, so when I installed it, the system kept saying that there was no drive…grrr.

Read More

The blame game

In Apple, Gadgets, General, Software by Michael SheehanLeave a Comment

Macs rule! Simple, elegant and the stuff just works.

Prime example: new digital camera.

After our old digital camera died and we purchased a new one, we, of course, wanted to see how well it worked. The test: take a picture and get it off the camera and on to a computer.

For the Mac: a matter of minutes with zero configuration needed. iPhoto did it all perfectly

Read More