Businesses helped neighbors with Internet access and mobile device charge-ups during Sandra. Following that example, enterprises should consider preparing Internet disaster plans to help the public during disasters.
In my video I discussed how enterprises could help during disasters, not just with charging stations but also by providing free WiFi. If WiFi is available, Chromebooks will work. Sure, a handful of Internet sites went down because of Sandy, but "the Internet" was alive and well.
Also, there are hundreds of Web apps with offline features. Check out my ThinkerNET blog this coming Monday about the newest, cheapest... Chromebook!
Moreover, during disasters, the Internet's most important value isn't the ability to work on, say, a standalone Excel spreadsheet or Word document. As I noted, during Sandy people wanted -- needed -- the Internet for finding the condition of their friends and relatives, searching for gas stations and grocery stores, looking for a place to stay, etc.
Granted, to keep kids occupied, preloaded games, music and videos are useful. And once the necessities are taken care of, it's important to work. But there are relatively few businesses that can't accomplish many tasks via the Internet, which is where Chromebooks and other computers/tablets come in.
Would Chromebooks really be good for this kind of thing given that the Internet is going to be inherently unreliable during a disaster? Would companies be better off with devices that do not require Internet connections to function?
Many enterprises view high-speed broadband connections as ubiquitous. Yet in about 20 percent of the country, businesses and their employees do not have access to even DSL connections. This shortcoming diminishes enterprises' ability to support their employees.
A survey by JD Powers found that customer interest in product features is lessening as phones evolve. Rather than features, price is driving purchases, and that change could have a dramatic impact on how IT departments secure these devices.
A recent release of the popular TweetDeck app for Twitter power-users gives new life to software that had previously taken a wrong turn. Here's a quick walk-through of the new TweetDeck, to show you why it should be at the top of your Twitter toolkit.
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