Stories by Robert Strohmeyer

myBantu brings social productivity to Android and iOS

The concept of social productivity is gaining momentum, and I've covered some prominent social productivity tools previously on this blog. As a general sort of thing, social productivity sounds like a good idea. It makes work collaborative, emphasizes communication, and keeps everyone informed of a project's status. In practice, however, it's often noisy, kludgy, haphazard, and annoying. But after taking a look at new mobile apps from a service called myBantu yesterday, I'm a little more open to the notion of this kind of social work.

5 more PC upgrade mistakes (and how to avoid them)

As PCs get more powerful and easier to use, the challenges involved with upgrading them have remained about the same. For the novice, a hard drive upgrade can appear downright daunting. For more experienced tinkerers, the upgrade itself may be easy, but it's easier still to overlook factors that could streamline the whole process and better protect both the hardware and the data stored on it.

Cloud storage services keep data safe and accessible

Your PC's hard drive may have half a terabyte of data on its platters, and you might not remember the last time you backed any of it up. In all likelihood, though, you use only a few gigabytes' worth of files on a regular basis. With a combination of cloud-storage services, you can keep that data backed up and synced among all of your computers automatically, and access your most essential files whenever you want.

Three great mobile mind mapping apps

All this week, I've been talking about how amazingly useful mind-mapping is for a variety of creative and business tasks. In my last post, I looked at a few of the best mind-mapping tools for Windows. Today we'll check out some of the coolest mind mappers for smartphones and tablets.

Smartphone notifications are key to productivity

When you're on the go, your phone is your lifeline to the connected world. It doesn't just deliver your messages and make calls. It also tells you what you're supposed to be doing and when, and keeps you updated on all the moving variables in your world, from social media interactions to important news. So choosing a phone that handles notifications in a clear, flexible way can be vital to your daily effectiveness.

Leaving your job? Take your data with you

Nothing lasts forever, and in the 21st century, most people's employment is anything but guaranteed. What should have some permanence, however, is our digital footprint -- the body of data that constitutes the true center of our professional lives. In this article, I'll explain how to protect the integrity of your most valuable business data as you make the transition from one job to another, or from job to jobless.

9 awesome mobile must-haves

Secure phones: Smartphones are notoriously vulnerable to data-security and privacy breaches. Lookout Mobile Security locks down your Android, BlackBerry, or Windows Mobile phone to keep malware and other threats from invading.

6 sensational storage essentials

All-purpose undeletion: If you ever delete a file and later wish you hadn't, Piriform's Recuva could be a crucial weapon in your arsenal. This simple tool scours the sectors of your hard drive, memory card, media player, or other connected storage device to locate lost data in the underlying file structure.

Gets serious with tablets, 4G, NAS, pocket projectors

CES 2011 has plenty to offer the consumer world, but increasingly it brings major business tech advances, too. This year, we're seeing a flood of new offerings that will make doing business on the road easier, more engaging, and a whole lot more productive. Thanks to a host of new tablets, a flurry of 4G wireless offerings, some cool new networked storage options, and a bunch of itty bitty projectors, this CES is shaping up to be a road warrior's fantasy.

Master your e-mail (so it doesn’t master you)

I've seen a few reports that say kids these days think e-mail is passé. Heh. That may be, but for people who have actual work to do, the inbox remains the center of the universe. And I have some tricks to help you take that universe in the palm of your hand and utterly dominate it -- you know, just in case e-mail doesn't go the way of the telegraph anytime soon.

Root Google Android the easy way

Google's Android operating system is riding a wave of popularity that has rapidly eclipsed Apple's iOS, and by the end of 2010 it's expected to overtake RIM's BlackBerry as the world's leading smartphone platform. However, despite the relative openness and flexibility of the OS, your Android phone still isn't as powerful and customizable as it could be. To unlock all of your phone's potential, you'll need to root it.

12 amazing productivity boosters

It's official: I can no longer think of a single person I know (unless, of course, you count my two-year-old) who doesn't have more work on their to-do list than any human being can reasonably be expected to handle. If you're like everyone I know, chances are you could use a few new tools to help you manage your priorities, simplify your life, and accomplish more. This guide is for you.

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