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Rick Delgado

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I've been blessed to have a successful career and have recently taken a step back to pursue my passion of freelance writing. I love to write about new technologies and keeping ourselves secure in a changing digital landscape. I occasionally write articles for several companies, including Dell.

What We Can Learn From Apps that Make Money

What We Can Learn From Apps that Make Money
What makes an app sell? Everyone that has ever owned a smartphone has imagined an app idea at one point. The truth is apps are a dime-a-dozen. There are over 2 million apps on the smartphone market. The revenue is right around 10 billion a year, meaning most apps don't make money. The good news is we can learn from the apps that are making money. They really are great examples of 'what to do' when considering an app idea. Here are 10 must-have apps that do a lot of things right: They satisfy a popular need. They offer free and paid versions with extra value. They have clean, minimal screen designs that make them easier to navigate. They do something different that adds meaning for users. They allow customization. They're generally multi-purpose. Why do we love these organization apps?1. The Evernote app is a great example of good, free software that almost always leads to a paid upgrade in order to access all your notes offline too. You can take notes in nearly every way possible -- through web clips, typing, uploading photos from your camera that you can annotate -- and you can search for any keywords on any of these...
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Products That Can Easily Be Converted Into Apps

Products That Can Easily Be Converted Into Apps
Smartphone technology is really creeping its way into product marketing and this is a great thing and we need more of it. One example of this is the GoPro camera. The GoPro camera offers an app for smartphone users where you can now take photos and record videos with your GoPro that might be a hundred feet away. This makes the product more innovative. It's the direction of most digital products, but it should be the case with non-digital products.Another example would be QR codes. QR codes are on most popular products today just in case you want to learn more from your tablet. Smartphone technology is really creeping its way into product marketing and this is giving the user a better experience. I did my research and I believe this should be on more products. Here are 7 of my ideas. Analyzing Your Energy CostsCurrently, residents may purchase sensors that can be attached to most electronics, and these gadgets will consistently send information about each device's consumption of energy to a software program. Consequently, web designers can create an app that automatically monitors the electricity, the water and the gas that a household uses.Finding Inexpensive AutomobilesDevelopers may design an app that automatically...
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8 Billion Dollar Companies that Display Great Examples of Web Design and Marketing Principles

8 Billion Dollar Companies that Display Great Examples of Web Design and Marketing Principles
Looking for inspiration for your website design or redesign? Maybe even a few more conversions or just a better user experience for your traffic? Where better to turn than to the websites of today's most successful corporations. Billion-dollar companies have the means and resources to stay on top of today's best web design and marketing principles. Luckily, your company doesn't have to be raking in billions per year to take advantage of them. If you ever need help or have any questions about what you should do for your website, analyzing companies who did it right is a great way to get started. Billion dollar companies will still have flaws and weaknesses. They aren't perfect, but they do some things really good and that's how they get to where they are today. Pay attention to these 8 companies and maybe you'll understand! Walmart.com - No matter which page you're on while visiting Walmart's website, you can always find your way back to the shopping cart. Just click on the shopping cart icon on the header at the top. A prominent shopping cart reduces confusion and helps move people along through the shopping process. Walmart has a very impressive search engine built into their website,...
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Taking to the Cloud: A Look at the Future of Cloud Computing

Taking to the Cloud: A Look at the Future of Cloud Computing
Cloud computing has gone far beyond an inevitability or trend; the cloud is a reality now, a business tool that many companies have been using for years. The recent explosion is just the latest in a series of developments that have seen many businesses adopting the cloud and making it a regular part of their operations. According to a recent study, 58% of businesses spend more than 10% of their yearly budgets on cloud services. There’s little debate that cloud computing is sweeping through the business world, but what does the future hold? A close look at current trends and movements reveals details that could shed some light on what awaits the cloud in the years to come. New Applications & Services Cloud providers are always looking for ways to stand out from the rest of the pack, and the best way to do that is through developing the latest innovative applications. In most cases, the innovations will come from already existing providers or those businesses that are already using cloud computing. It is this added experience that can be a driving force for new solutions and applications in the cloud community. Existing services can also be expected to get better,...
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Endpoint Devices with the Highest Security Risk and Why It's So Hard to Manage Them

Endpoint Devices with the Highest Security Risk and Why It's So Hard to Manage Them
One of the prevailing fears of businesses all over the world is the potential for cyber attacks to hit their networks and steal valuable company data or damage infrastructure. There’s good reason for these fears. The number of attacks against companies have increased this year, and security risks are bigger than ever before. A recent survey from the Ponemon Institute shows that the explosion of personal mobile devices in the workplace, along with expansions in cloud computing, have increased the number of security risks. If that weren’t disconcerting enough, the same survey showed IT departments were having a much more difficult time managing these new technologies and risks. As companies prepare to head into the future, they’ll need to come up with the right strategies for dealing with these new threats and shoring up endpoint security. (Tweet This: A recent survey shows more mobile devices in the workplace has led to increased security risks. #security #byod) Security risks have always been a problem for companies, but only recently has it grown dramatically. The same survey from the Ponemon Institute compares the recent numbers with the previous year, and nearly every category has seen an increase. Endpoint devices are the primary concern,...
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Marketing Trends Every Entrepreneur should Know

Marketing Trends Every Entrepreneur should Know
Big Data is changing the small business world. Small businesses are doing things never previously imagined, and because of that they are finding ways to thrive and compete while battling competition with greater resources and size. The increased ability to make the most of money and resources provided by big data offerings such as Hadoop as a service is a driving force behind this. Big data is making an especially big impact in small business marketing. Traditionally this has been an extremely important, yet difficult area, for small businesses to thrive. It can determine success or failure depending on how well it’s done. Big data should be behind everything these companies do. In the past, big data was only feasible for big companies with large amounts of liquid capital necessary for installing enormous infrastructure, equipment and software. With big data services in the cloud, any size business can now take advantage. With affordable prices and low upfront costs, small businesses can scale the data to whatever size they need. Additionally, with many companies that provide cloud as a service you only pay for what you use. There’s no worry about wasting money on packages and services that go unused. An important...
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How to Stop Cyber Criminals in Their Tracks

How to Stop Cyber Criminals in Their Tracks
It’s no easy task to face cyber crime head on and try to stop it. Businesses all over the world are coming to realize just how dangerous the cyber world can be. Data is more valuable than ever before, but it’s also quite vulnerable to attacks. Big businesses have had to deal with this unfortunate reality for years, but small businesses are certainly not immune either. Recent research shows that in the U.K. alone, small businesses lose the equivalent of about $1.3 billion each year due to cyber crime. Needless to say, while big businesses may have the big bucks, small businesses don’t have the same resources to protect themselves, making them prime targets. Whether big or small, companies can take a number of steps to prevent cyber criminals before they leave lasting damage to their organizations.   Understanding Tactics   Beating prospective attackers often requires business leaders to know exactly how they work. Most cyber attacks can be broken down into four steps. The first one is reconnaissance, where the attackers probe networks and systems, finding any vulnerabilities they can exploit. The second is intrusion, the step where attackers actually penetrate and gain access to the system. The third step...
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5 Apps That Can Make BYOD More Effective

5 Apps That Can Make BYOD More Effective
Talk to any business leader about the advantages of bring your own device (BYOD) policies, and almost every one of them will say the same thing: BYOD has the potential to help employees be more productive. By using personal devices they’re familiar with, employees, in theory, will be able to get more work done and be more organized. But oftentimes, mobile devices are only as good as the apps that are installed on them, and in the case of BYOD, apps can play a major role in having an effective and successful policy. With so many issues surrounding BYOD, there are many apps available that can make a difference. Here are just a few apps that all BYOD companies and employees should check out that go beyond well-known ones like Dropbox and Evernote. Contacts+ When in a business setting, your contacts are of extreme importance. Finding ways to organize all those contacts, however, can be a challenging task. With the Contacts+ app, organizing your contacts is made a lot easier. The apps takes the phone numbers, social media accounts, and email addresses on the device and organizes the contacts based on those categories. When selecting a contact, you also have the...
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Clear Skies: How Cloud Computing Helps the Environment

Clear Skies: How Cloud Computing Helps the Environment
Lots of people these days are doing their part to live a “greener” lifestyle. There’s certainly an effort to use more sustainable forms of energy as a way to protect the environment, and businesses in general are no different. It just so happens that taking more environmentally friendly measures also leads to cost savings in the long run. Perhaps one of the most impactful and promising ways companies are protecting the environment is through the widespread adoption of cloud computing. Whether intentional or not, cloud computing has the potential to really cut down on greenhouse gas emissions and help the planet out in multiple ways. And for those businesses without an environmental focus, saving some money doesn’t sound like a bad idea either. Numerous studies have been conducted in recent years that take a look at the impact cloud computing has on the environment. One study done by the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory along with Northwestern University is perhaps the most cited about the subject. In the study, researchers looked at the effects of moving fairly common business applications like email, CRM software, and productivity software like spreadsheets and word processing to the cloud. The results are striking. If all businesses...
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Coping with Data Loss: 5 Lessons from Recent Security Disasters

Coping with Data Loss: 5 Lessons from Recent Security Disasters
It’s sadly become a fact of life that security breaches happen with alarming frequency. Hackers have been trying to get at valuable data for decades, but only in recent years have data breaches reached monumental proportions. During the 2013 holiday season, Target experienced a massive breach where 40 million debit and credit card numbers were stolen with other effects reaching up to 110 million customers. eBay more recently was the victim of a security breach where a database holding user passwords was infiltrated, giving attackers access to around 145 million records. Other breaches have hit Coca-Cola, Neiman Marcus, SnapChat, Michaels and even institutions of higher learning. (Tweet This) From these incidents, customers and businesses are quickly realizing cyberattacks are almost an expected occurrence, but there are also a number of important lessons that can be learned to prevent future problems or at least minimize the damage done. 1. Communication is Key If there’s a problem, companies need to communicate that to their customers as soon as possible. Bad communication can sometimes make a problem worse or ruin a company’s reputation. Target unfortunately didn’t alert customers until days after news outlets had already been running the story. In SnapChat’s case, months passed...
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How Big Data can Transform Content Marketing

How Big Data can Transform Content Marketing
The massive influx of data has opened up an incredible number of opportunities for businesses all across the globe. The downside of all this big data, however, is the amount of adapting companies need to do to make use of it. This adoption process requires significant time and resources, but it also can lead to major changes in how businesses operate. One result of the big data revolution is that businesses are placing a greater emphasis on content marketing. The reason for this is that many companies believe content marketing, driven by data, can give them a competitive advantage. As big data becomes more commonplace, it’s easy to see that they could very well be correct as content marketing prepares to make the leap into this growing movement. The impact big data has had on content marketing is still being felt, and its effects may not be fully known for some time to come. As mentioned above, more and more businesses see data-driven marketing practices as a valuable asset, one which can give them the edge over competitors. One report appears to demonstrate just how excited business leaders are about the possibilities of content marketing when utilizing big data. In the...
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How Bring Your Own Device Fosters Trust in the Workplace

How Bring Your Own Device Fosters Trust in the Workplace
Business leaders are always looking for ways to increase employee satisfaction and productivity. This, of course, can be done in a number of ways and each company has it’s own unique approach. One approach that all companies should be considering adding to the list is “bring your own device,” more commonly referred to as BYOD. This term refers to the practice of allowing employees to use their own personal devices at work, for work. BYOD has received a fair amount of criticism in the media for its potential dangers, and rightfully so. It isn’t a perfect system and still has several issues to work out. However, companies are also finding it extremely beneficial for a number of reasons. One in particular is the environment of trust it tends to foster. Why trust matters? First it’s important to establish why trust even matters. After all, shouldn't employees be able to punch the clock and work hard without feeling like their co-workers are their best friends? The reality is that the most successful companies are built on an environment of trust. Trust allows employees to communicate their honest thoughts and concerns, without the fear of rebuke. It opens lines of communication between leaders...
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The Realities of Employee Compliance with BYOD Rules

The Realities of Employee Compliance with BYOD Rules
Bring your own device (BYOD) has been growing in popularity in recent years. In the workplace, BYOD essentially allows employees to use personal devices for company purposes. This practice has become so widespread that some even predict it will become mandatory by approximately half of employers by the year 2017. This is especially true for midsize and larger enterprises (2,500-5,000 employees) where the practice is more prevalent. While many point to the benefits of such a system, which include greater employee freedom and potential reduces cost to the company, others emphasize the risks, mainly in the realm of security. Much of the success of a BYOD system lies in the hands of the employees themselves. If employees are careful and diligent in following rules that minimize risk, security becomes less of a problem. However, there is evidence to suggest that many employees may not be willing to comply. Young people don’t follow the rules Recent research shows that the younger generation of employees (age 21 to 32), including those who are now just entering the workforce, are resistant to BYOD security policies. Researchers took a survey of 3,200 employees at this age and found that 51 percent were willing to ignore...
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Bring Your Own App: The Benefits and Challenges of a New Trend

Bring Your Own App: The Benefits and Challenges of a New Trend
A big change is already taking place for businesses across the world as the proliferation of mobile technology rapidly advances. For years, companies have been trying to keep up as Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) has become commonplace in the work environment. Another similar trend is emerging, one taking advantage of the innovations of programmers and entrepreneurs. It’s called Bring Your Own Application (BYOA), and some experts are predicting it will surpass BYOD as the dominant movement in the office. Whereas BYOD is when employees bring their personal devices (tablets, smartphones, laptops) in to work to perform their duties, BYOA is where employees utilize their own chosen apps that are downloaded onto their devices. The two trends are similar in nature in that employees are choosing for themselves how best to do their jobs by using the latest technology. Both strategies carry significant benefits, but they also come with potential concerns that IT departments must address. BYOA is a result of employees looking for the right tools to get the job done in the most efficient way possible. One recent study found 37% of employees who already use apps for work are likely to spend their own money downloading apps in...
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Big Data: The Key to More Effective Mobile Marketing

Big Data: The Key to More Effective Mobile Marketing
The mobile explosion is on. According to Forrester Research, 93 percent of adults in the U.S. who go online own a mobile phone and 19 percent own a tablet. At that rate mobile Internet will surpass desktop usage in 2014. What this means for business is that the era of mobile marketing has arrived. By utilizing Big Data analytics, companies can leverage the mountains of data that consumers are generating on mobile devices to gain insights and create more targeted and personal advertising. Here’s a look at why Big Data is the key to more effective mobile marketing. Hyper-localized marketing – Although online shopping has long been predicted to dominate brick and mortar shopping, a majority of shoppers still like to buy things in person. In fact statistics show that most shopping takes place within a 10-mile radius of the home. The challenge for marketers then is to find better ways to deliver more relevant messages to local shoppers at a granular level. To meet this challenge, marketers are using IP geolocation technologies. With the ability to locally target customers via IP geolocation, merchants can get information about discount coupons and banner ads directly in front of the right shoppers at...
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The Explosive Growth of Flash Storage in 2013

The Explosive Growth of Flash Storage in 2013
In 2013, enterprises around the globe have made flash standard equipment for their storage arrays.  As the end of the calendar year is only days away, it is difficult to foresee a new enterprise-class storage array being developed and deployed without incorporating flash in one form or another. Flash memory has taken the staid storage industry by storm.  First utilized in consumer products, such as the iPod, flash storage has now become the new star of enterprise IT.  A primary reason for this is speed. At speeds of up to 400 times faster than standard rotating disks, flash-based solid state disks, or SSDs, are capable of proficiently handling the growing storage needs of today’s evolving enterprise IT.  When comparing flash storage vs SSD, the speed differential becomes apparent in no time at all. As an established mainstay in enterprise environments, flash array storage is a significant driver of faster system responses and communication channels.  Through the use of flash storage, social networking companies, such as Facebook, are able to better respond to increased traffic burdens.  Flash storage is also behind numerous new cloud-based services.  This new technology is creating a rising demand for enterprise-level storage and digital content distribution.  The demand...
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Creating an IT Policy for BYOD

Creating an IT Policy for BYOD
Technology has maneuvered its way into almost all aspects of people's lives. From shopping to staying connected with loved ones to helping businesses flourish, there is no denying the technological area of the 21st century is booming now more than ever. So, what exactly does this mean for small businesses and large corporations? Does it mean every employee now needs a handheld mobile device? Many business experts say yes to this question, and they believe a great way to go about doing this is by implementing a bring your own device (BYOD) policy. What Exactly is BYOD? Through a BYOD security policy, workers are allowed to bring their own devices to work and use them for business-related purposes. This of course means it is the responsibility of the workers to provide their selves with such devices. Because of this, lower-level workers tend to have cheaper equipment, while high-earning salary workers take advantage of today's most modern devices. No matter the devices used, there are benefits gained. From increased productivity to enhanced worker satisfaction, the benefits of BYOD are far and wide, and more importantly, BYOD is helping businesses to increase their profit levels. Creating a BYOD Policy When companies choose to...
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Applications of Flash Storage for the Enterprise

Applications of Flash Storage for the Enterprise
There are numerous devices that use flash storage for memory such as cell phones, USB drives and portable media players. Recently, flash storage has begun to be incorporated into data storage applications for enterprise. Some may ask, “What is flash storage?” Flash storage is similar to random access memory (RAM) in a computer except that the information it stores is retained when the computer is powered off. Information stored in RAM is lost when the computer is powered down. In addition, the data recorded on a flash memory is accomplished electronically and stored magnetically rather than mechanically as with ROM or hard drives. Flash memory incorporates floating gate MOSFET transistors that are positioned on a grid. Traditional transistors have only one gate but MOSFETs have two, referred to as NAND gates. These two gates allow a voltage to be stored between them. The voltage stored on the chip represents information, and it will be retained for several years unless erased. Flash storage offers several advantages over traditional hard drives. Flash based memory has no mechanical parts that may be subject to wear or damage. Furthermore, the processing speed of storage disks that incorporate mechanical parts is significantly less than that of...
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5 Predicted Cyber Security Trends for 2014

5 Predicted Cyber Security Trends for 2014
As disturbing details regarding the depth and breadth of Target’s security breach continue to surface, the clear message is that organizations need to implement greater cyber security safeguards to prevent future breaches from occurring. For as the Target attack shows, such breaches of personal data not only pose financial risks, they also put the company’s reputation at risk and open the doors for legal retaliation. In the interest of creating better safeguards against cyber attacks going forward, here is a look at 5 predicted cyber security trends for 2014. Greater adherence to NIST standards and guidelines Under the Executive Order “Improving Critical Infrastructure Cybersecurity," President Obama has directed the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) to work with organizations on developing — as stated on nist.gov — a “framework of standards, guidelines and best practices to promote the protection of critical infrastructure.” While developing this framework has been considered a “voluntary” practice on the part of organizations thus far, heightened scrutiny of security practices by the FTC and other regulators will force organizations to more strictly adhere to NIST standards and best practices with regard to cyber security in 2014 and beyond. Otherwise, in the event of a security breach,...
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Problems with Traditional Data Back-up Methods

Problems with Traditional Data Back-up Methods
The world of enterprise is becoming increasingly reliant on data. Data archives allow companies to make smart financial and marketing decisions as well as provide companies with information on where a company is headed. According to the International Data Corporation (IDC) the world’s data will grow by 50x in the next decade. So where will all this data be stored? Enterprises are starting to realize that traditional methods of storage will not be sufficient. Traditional methods generally include hard disk or tape media. A new method known as flash storage has been growing in popularity. Flash memory uses electricity rather than mechanical parts and only consumes 20% of the power used by traditional methods. The following are problems associated with traditional methods of storage and reasons flash memory is becoming more common in enterprise. Damage to Magnetic Media The traditional backup tapes that many enterprises still use today are built with magnetic media. This makes them extremely susceptible to corruption. Despite the fact that tapes are built with a mechanism that can detect potential problems, all it takes is something like a fingerprint or exposure to certain elements and the data on the tape is essentially destroyed. While many enterprises assume...
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