Jana Technology Services Blog

March 7, 2011

Removing Actions from Service System Preferences on a Mac OSX

Filed under: Mac,Technology — janats @ 3:56 pm

Removing an Action from the System Preferences->KeyBoard->Services on the Mac is a dark art. Numerous web searches were of no help. As we finally figured out how to do this, I thought that we would share this.

1. Step one is to open Terminal and enter:

/System/Library/Frameworks/CoreServices.framework/Versions/A/Frameworks/LaunchServices.framework/Versions/A/Support/lsregister -dump > services.txt

2. This will create a text file called services.txt in whatever directory you executed it from.

3. Now edit this files and search for the action you wish to remove

4. Once you find it look for the ‘path’ that is referenced. This is the App that is keeping the Action visible. If you no longer require the App then locate it and delete it.

5. Next empty trash

Now, if you relaunch the System preferences and navigate to Keyboard->Services and check the actions, you should see the actions have been removed for the Apps you deleted.

August 30, 2010

RFP’s a waste of time?

Filed under: Sales and Business Development — janats @ 11:42 am
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We know many organisations that use Technology RFP’s. Personally we’ve always found them very limiting and often impose fixed rules that make a mockery of attaining value as it is hard to nake them generic enough to satisfy all vendors that are being invited to submit them. Interesting to see this blog post which is of the same opinion.

March 2, 2010

Using Google Docs with Windows Virtual Drive and Sync

Like everyone else we were pretty please that when Google Docs announced that they would support the uploading of any file. We use Google Docs a lot and being able to use this as our Storage Cloud for everything made perfect sense. What we would have liked to see is more default windows integration or even the famed GDrive that has been for so long bandied about.

Luckily we discovered SMEStorage.com who now support Google Docs (amongst other clouds, including SkyDrive – more of that later). Using the full version of their windows tools we were able to get some tight integration with Google Docs on Windows.

Firstly, after registering for the Google Docs beta on the SMEStorage website, and syncing our account we were setup to access our Google Docs file through the SMEStorage platform.  This involves us providing our Google Docs authentication details but this can be done on a per session basis if you worry about security (although the site says all authentication held is encrypted).

Installing the full version of the windows tools (which you need to pay ($29.99 for) is straightforward but note that if you are installing on Windows 7 you should install as Administrator.

Once this is done you have several new tools. The first is the infamous GDrive, except it is called the SMEStorage Drive. Note in the picture below I dragged a shortcut to the desktop

Double clicking on this enables you to access all the files you have stored on Google Docs in a folder / file view exactly like you have on normal windows files. You are able to drag and drop and launch files here exactly as you would with other files, albeit slightly slower given you really have a view on files that are held remotely, so in reality files are being uploaded and downloaded, but it works well.

Another tool that you get is a dedicated explorer for the files which resides in the taskbar until you click it. This has lots of options including creating of Winamp playlists for MP3 files that you may store, streaming videos directly from the GDocs cloud, the ability to share files, encrypt files, and lots more.

More features are enabled depending on your account. SMEStorage enables you to have more than one storage cloud in a virtual view, so you can have folders that say “My Google Docs files”, “My SkyDrive files” etc. Anything you upload in these folders is automatically added to that particular underlying storage cloud which is pretty neat. In fact, you can add a lot of Cloud Storage this way. Microsoft SkyDrive has 25GB free storage, and the SMEStorage Lifetime Cloud package, which is what you need to purchase to get the full version of the windows tools, lets you add up to 10 storage clouds to your package. These can be the same instance of the same cloud, so you could add 10 Google Docs accounts for example, or 10 SkyDrive accounts, giving you 250GB of accessible storage !

We chose to have Google Docs, SkyDrive, and GMail. SMEStorage also lets you treat GMail as a storage cloud, and it seems to work pretty well. Given that GMail has 10 GB storage it is a nice addition when using Google Docs and files can easily be opened in Google Docs from GMail.

Sync is also another tool that you get with the windows tools. This enables you to sync any file or folder with your Google Docs account. In SMEStorage these files reside under a folder called My Syncs, but in Google Docs they are just in the root of the account.

There is also shell integration which enables you to right click on any file in the normal windows explorer and upload it to SMEStorage, and thereby your underlying Google Docs Cloud. Once the file is uploaded a TinyURL is copied to the windows clipboard giving you a unique url for the file which is useful if you want to instantly send out a link for the file you just uploaded. You can also right click on any folder and choose to add it to Sync.

There is also integration with Microsoft Office, OpenOffice, and Microsoft Outlook. In Microsoft Office you get a new cloud toolbar which enables you to open files directly from Google Docs and save them back. Any files saved back seem to be automatically versioned if the file name is the same without having to do anything. I presume OpenOffice works the same way.  Microsoft Outlook is integrated in a couple of ways. firstly there is an integration that enables you to backup your email straight to your nominated cloud, and secondly, when in the dedicated cloud explorer that you can launch from the taskbar, you can choose to backup your outlook contacts to the cloud. All of these features can be enabled from the SMEStorage control panel.

There are many other features that we’ve into touched upon but you should get the general gist and important stuff of how this works.

February 25, 2010

Blog is back on the regular WordPress site

Filed under: Pure Jana — janats @ 3:56 pm

Our Blog is back on the regular wordpress site. Our blogging host was here one minute and gone the next !

Seriously though, it does show how outsourcing of infrastructure is great but that it can still lead to outages downtime and in some cases loss of data. Thankfuly we had all our posts backed up and whilst some of them were point in time posts that we won’t seek to add here, others we will repost as they are genuinely useful given the feedback we have received on them (and the emails asking us where they had gone !).

November 2, 2007

UK government sites suffer cyber-terrorism

Filed under: Technology — janats @ 5:50 pm
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Officials from the UK government have confirmed that various departments had suffered cyber attacks which are thought to originate from China. This has accelerated fears that the Chinese authorities are looking at ways to use the Internet to destabilize governments.

SAP Acquire Business Objects

Filed under: Sales and Business Development — janats @ 5:47 pm
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SAP agreed to acquire Business Objects for $6.8 billion.  This is SAP’s largest acquisition.  SAP has promised an updated product roadmap soon.

October 8, 2007

John Freeland leaves Salesforce.com

Filed under: Executive Movements,SAAS — janats @ 2:04 pm

According to an 8-K filed by Salesforce.com, John Freeland has resigned from Salesforce.com effective September 28, 2007. Freeland was hired as President, Worldwide Operations.Read the complete filing here.

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September 27, 2007

Enterprise Mashups Hurtle Toward Mainstream

Filed under: Web 2.0 Apps — janats @ 4:01 pm

Enterprise mashups have reached the peak of their hype cycle and are on their way to popping up in the enterprise.ADVERTISEMENTMany companies looking to cull data from multiple sources to help their employees do their jobs better are seeking mashups as an answer, said Anthony Bradley, a Gartner analyst, Sept. 21 at the Gartner Web Innovation Summit 2007 here.

Mashups are applications that pull data from multiple sources, often applications, to fortify the value of the information the software yields. Calling mashups a Frankenstein of sorts, Gartner analyst Bradley said mashups don’t own their own data. Rather, data and business logic are sourced externally.

As with many Internet-driven technologies, mashups got their wings in the consumer space, with enterprising programmers splicing Google Maps with retail information or some such configuration.But Bradley said businesses are increasingly using mashups to improve workflow efficiencies at a time when knowledge workers are looking to get information faster. The major benefit of mashups is rapid application development, he said.

Enterprise Mashups Hurtle Toward Mainstream

We’re not surprise to to see this at all.  It makes a lot of sense for all sizes of business to take advantage of Mashups to make access to no only make working with inter-related data easier, but also to build new applications that can help their business or which they can use to promote their business.

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September 22, 2007

Finance crisis ‘will hurt IT contractors’

Filed under: Sales and Business Development,Technology — janats @ 1:34 pm

The number of IT contractor roles in Britain’s finance industry will inevitably decline amid jitters from the Northern Rock credit crisis, a leading IT jobs agency said yesterday.

A management expert also said shock waves from the lender’s implosion will shake the finance jobs market for at least the next 18 months, with IT staff budgets among the hardest hit.But global IT recruitment firm Hudson says demand for financial IT experts could slump as early as this year, causing pay rates to plateau, before they further depress into 2008.

A slowdown in temporary IT jobs looks like an inevitability, the firm said.Economic pressure on IT staff budgets would revert market status to five years ago, when contractors were mainly hired for niche roles, rather than to fill headcount.But for now, there is no evidence that end users facing the shaken finance industry are cutting their spending on IT contractors, consultants or freelancers.

Similarly, contractors themselves aren’t refusing IT roles with financers, but they are asking questions about how these companies responded to the turmoil, Hudson added.Another IT recruitment agency, CV Screen, doesn’t foresee Britain’s financial woes as having a “sudden impact” on permanent or contract IT recruitment.Its managing director, Matthew Iveson, said: “It would be naïve to think that the current credit crunch will not have some impact on the employment market.“But the current signs are that organisations are still feeling bullish and have not put [IT] projects on hold. We are continuing to field enquiries from both existing and new clients.”Positively for the economy, management and IT consultants are yet to be bitten by Britain’s banking crisis, hailed as the most embarrassing for over a decade.

Fiona Czerniawska, director of a thinktank for the Management Consultancies Association, which represents 70 per cent of the UK consulting industry, said confidence among members remains high.“Capital markets is quite a niche segment,” for UK-based consultants, she added, “much smaller than banking and insurance, so it’s unlikely firms would be heavily exposed here.“Longer-term, however, it’s clearly a situation we need to keep an eye on, as it might be the first sign that the recent boom in consulting may have peaked.”

Finance crisis ‘will hurt IT contractors’ :: Contractor UK

We’ve heard comments from numerous consultancy firms that they expect to see a glut of contractors released onto the market that in January and result in better choice for agencies and lower rates…..

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Wikipedia policed by WikiScanner

Filed under: Technology — janats @ 12:13 pm

WikiScanner is a new tool that effectively polices the entries on Wikipedia.  The tool simply looks at the millions of edits made on the online encyclopedia and then matches the original IP address of the editor to check whether any entries were “massaged”.

Not surprisingly a minority showed signs of being massaged, in particular there were changes made to the entry for ExxonMobile the global oil company,  The edits tried to play down the impact of the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil disaster.  Other changes that were linked back to corporate IP addresses were Wal-Mart, who edit made salary information look more favourable, and links critical of Starbucks, the coffee shop, disappearing.

Fact – never believe what you read online – always double or even triple check the source…..

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