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When you walk down the street, more than half of the people are fiddling with their cell phones. Hop on the city bus, and the majority of the commuters are listening to their favorite bands via their brightly colored MP3 players. Texting has become so popular that people have actually walked right into poles or walls because they were so preoccupied by it. Technology is running - and some might argue, coming close to ruining - our personal and business lives.

Technology is not a bad thing, or a good thing. It just is. Technology and science is whatever the person using it makes of it. For things like medicine and personal improvement, science and technology can prove to be a Godsend. But with technology and science comes the threat of nuclear warfare, and cyber-hacking.

Yet despite all of the many disadvantageous and inadvertent effects of technology, it has its uses. And the men and women who immerse themselves in the advancement of the field have brought technology a long way since its origin. So, which country is the most technologically advanced?

Well, according to the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) and IBM, who teamed up to rank the “e-readiness” of 69 nations, the top twenty most technologically advanced nations (in terms of their consumer, business, and government’s ability to use ICT) as follows:

1.      Denmark

2.      United States of America

3.      Sweden

4.      Hong Kong

5.      Switzerland

6.      Singapore

7.      United Kingdom

8.      Netherlands

9.      Australia

10.  Finland

11.  Austria

12.  Norway

13.  Canada

14.  New Zealand

15.  Bermuda

16.  South Korea

17.  Taiwan

18.  Japan

19.  Germany

20.  Belgium

However, deciding which nation is the most scientifically advanced depends upon the person asking the question. For some people, countries like Japan would be the most technologically advanced because so many of the citizens make use of personal gadgets, such as iPads, and smartphones.

But, if you were to ask that question in terms of military innovation, the answer would lie with countries like our own United States of America. We have certainly made progress in terms of disaster recovery software.

If you were speaking strictly about medicinal advances, Australia, Italy, the United Kingdom, and the United States have all made great strides. From stem cell research to things like cloning and organ transplants, medical science has benefited greatly from the research contributed by many nations.

And let’s not forget the necessity of newly developed energy sources and agricultural techniques being contributed from the likes of Sweden, Israel, and France. Sweden’s environmentally friendly energy resource technology may prove to be invaluable. The Contributions to soil science being made by the Israelites will allow for agricultural advances for years to come, and the aviation and railway science innovations being contributed by the French could great impact modern transportation.

The answer to which nation is advancing the most in terms of technology varies. The fact remains, however, that the world is moving forward. From big innovations like cancer treatments to things like robots and disaster recovery software, there is no limit to how greatly technology may impact our lives.

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Owning a small business is hard work. The hours are long, the extra details that come with managing a company are endless, and it often seems as though you will never be able to catch up. In the end, though, all of the negative aspects of running your own business are overlooked because you get to do what you love. But that certainly does not mean that you would turn down any extra help if someone offered it to you.

One thing that small business owners can do that is sure to help them save time and hassle is opening a Checking Account MA. Here are five ways that opening a business checking account can benefit you: 

    A business checking account allows small business owners to keep their personal finances separate from their business finances. Not only will this make dealing with things like budgets and payroll much simpler, it will also help you out when it comes time to deal with your taxes. Keeping your business income separate from your personal income will make your financial matter much easier.

  1. A business account proves to other people—also known as “potential customers”—that you are serious. A business account tells your prospective clients that your company means so much to you that you have created a whole financial structure for it.

  2. When open up a checking account MA for your business, you will be able to give your employees ATM/debit cards. This way, if they ever need to make a purchase for your company they can do so without having to go through you. This will save you time that you would much rather be spending managing your company. 

  3. Opening a checking account for your company is convenient, but it will also help boost your credibility with your bank. Why is this important? Because at
    some point down the line, you will find yourself in need of a small business loan. If you ever want to expand your company—which, as a small business owner, of course you will—holding a business account will allow you to become acquainted with your financial institution. When they know how good of a client you are, they will be more eager to lend to you.

  4. Once you open a checking account for your company, the word will spread. Especially if you take your business to a community bank that relies upon
    small businesses to continue to operate. A community bank that will succeed when you do will help broaden your customer base ensuring that your company grows, and reaches its fullest potential. 

You work hard to manage your business, and you want to do everything that you can to see it succeed. Opening a checking account is by far the simplest and most effective thing that you can do for your company. Shop around with local financial institutions to see what account options they have to offer for small business owners like you.

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Avoiding your bank’s fees should be a priority for you as this can save you a lot of money over a long period of time. Avoid overdrafts and keep a minimum amount within your account in order to stay away from as many of these fees as possible. When all else fails, you can always ask the bank to drop fees for you. The worst that can happen is they say no.

There are a lot of bank fees out there, and you will want to avoid as many of these as possible. With the right bank, you can make a lot of fees simply disappear. This can be most easily accomplished with an online checking account. The internet has made our lives easier in so many respects and banking is one of the biggest areas of improvement. Giving yourself more power over your money is important and if you can make your banking life easier by doing this, you definitely should.

An online checking account is helpful because it gives you an ease of access toward managing your money. For example, if you overdraw your checking account, you can be alerted of this via email, if you wish, and then log online into your banking account and transfer funds electronically. This can help you to avoid an overdraft fee without the hassle of having to go into your banking branch and filling out paperwork. Online banking can be a big help in this respect as it makes things much more accessible to you and lets you fix banking problems on your own time.

Another thing is that many banks offer better interest rates on online savings accounts. The thing to remember with this is that there are sometimes regulations on how many transactions you can have per month on some of these accounts. By having a strictly online savings account, you are giving yourself a big advantage in other areas, too. You will get more interest, yes, but you are also increasing the ease with which you can view and manage your account. You don’t have to drive into the bank for your savings deposits, you can simply transfer money between your various online accounts.

Many banks also will apply fees if your account falls below a certain minimum balance. With online banking, you can see exactly where your balance currently is without the guesswork of keeping a checkbook or going into the bank branch itself. Keeping enough money in your account is a great way to avoid fees and oftentimes this fee is very avoidable. Just by staying constantly updated and aware of things, you can avoid some of the fees you might incur.

Ideally, you should never pay fees. In a perfect world, you would always have free checking and you would never overdraw your account. If you do overdraw your account though, sometimes your bank’s customer service department can reverse these charges. This is not an option you will want to abuse, but if you are only rarely making this banking mistake, your bank’s friendly customer service staff might be willing to occasionally wave such a fee. Even if they say no, it can’t hurt to ask about this. Just remember, you want your banking relationship to be advantageous to you; you don’t want to abuse this relationship so don’t ask for fee reversals on a regular basis. Still, you can’t get fees reversed if you don’t ask, so don’t be afraid to stick up for yourself when you can.

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There are six steps to the Electronic Discovery Reference Model. This is an explanation of the entire process.

As the world moves into the digital age, the dependance on hard copies of files on paper has diminished greatly, especially for correspondence. Memos to employees and owners of a company have been replaced by mass emails and rarely will you find an inbox or outbox on an office desk that isn't digitally represented on their computer. Records, both official and unofficial can be replicated an infinite number of times by scanning to electronic files and sent literally across the world in seconds. These factors have lead to the rather expansive, but still growing and somewhat mysterious world of electronic discoveryA method that has replaced regular discovery in the legal world, it is also known as ediscovery or e-discovery and is the process by which researchers gather evidence in electronic communication for the purposes of using it in litigation.

For those who aren't very experienced at e-discovery, George Socha Jr,. founder of Socha Consulting LLC in St. Paul, Minnesota, and Tom Gelbmann, managing director of Gelbmann & Associates in Roseville, Minnesota, developed a six step process called the Electronic Discovery Reference Model or EDRM for short. The six areas of EDRM are information management, identification, preservation/collection, processing/review/analysis, production and presentation and each are explained within the reference model.

The first step, information management, deals largely with how information is stored and whether it is stored securely. E-mail archiving plays a big part in this and there are very stringent rules that a company must instill in order to make the e-discovery process successful. The process also has to do with records management and content management and once all of this information is stored, retention is a vital component.

Next, identification is the method by which the company establishes just how much information there is to deal with in litigation and what needs to be done to include more if necessary. Common, every day search engines can handle the job in some instances, while still other instances may require a third party to identify specific files.

Preservation/collection is the next and very vital step in the Electronic Discovery Reference Model, and must be performed to exact specifications. It involves the process of properly protecting the necessary information that has been collected for litigation.

After preservation/collection, the information must be processed with just as much precision, as this step is heavily audited for accuracy. The information must be recorded in the exact state that it was found prior to processing and then sifted through to ensure that only the correct and most relevant information is used in litigation. Information can arrive to the processing team in a number of different formats and must be recorded properly.

Review is the step where the lawyer's strategies can start to take shape as this is where they determine what is privileged information to be kept out of the litigation process and what data can be used to develop the case. The step of Analysis happens throughout the e-discovery process and is represented by the Analysis Phase Diagram which outlines just how analysis can and should be performed at each stage.

After the guidelines for e-discovery have been set, the production and presentation are the final steps. Electronically stored information must be assessed to reduce cost, maintain efficiency and ensure accuracy of processing.

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A good investment advisor will always have your interests in mind, and will always explain their decisions and recommendations to you in terms that you can understand. If you don’t trust your advisor, you will have some serious problems, and this is obviously a scenario that you'll want to avoid.

With Raymond James financial services, you never need to worry about whether you should be trusting your investment advisor or not. They have only the very best advisors in their ranks, and this quality will carry over into their ability to effectively manage and expand your money. Ideally, you want an advisor who is looking out for your best interests, but also has the financial know how to make you as much money as possible in a safe manner. At Raymond James, you can experience all of these things.

Your local bank might offer some financial services, and this can certainly be convenient for you, but you need to ask yourself whether your banker has the requisite knowledge to manage your money to the degree that you deserve. It's almost always a better choice to put your money somewhere where you have a lot of confidence in how it will be managed. Your local bank is a very good place to keep money for your checking and savings purposes, but if you're not one hundred percent confident in their investment services, going with an outside source is a good idea. Raymond James would be honored to be that source for you.

A good investment advisor should have a few characteristics that you can easily see in how they treat you. For instance, a good advisor will never just assume that you want your money in a certain allocation, even if they think it is the best option for you. Your advisor should never make these assumptions, and should always get your opinion on these things. They should also always fully explain to you their decision making process. A good advisor will never take it for granted that you know all the reasons why an investment is a good or a bad idea. Your advisor should be able to always explain these things to you clearly and completely.

Additionally, your investment advisor should also always have choices for you. Even if they think that going in a certain direction with your money is the best choice, ultimately, it is not their decision to make. Your money is yours, so the decision making should ultimately be left up to you. If you feel that your investment specialist is pushing you hard in a certain direction, you might want to ask yourself why this is. Do they really feel that this is the best choice for you, or do you think that they will be getting an extra commission off of it? These questions should always be in your mind, and you should always be looking out for yourself. A good investment advisor will never push you in a certain direction just because it makes them more money.

If you are looking for a new investment advisor, make sure you do your research and choose the best one. You'll want to have many choices available to you,  and you'll want someone that offers you flexibility. Your needs will change over time, remember. You want your advisor to acknowledge this.

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