KeepFeature2

Google who? It’s very likely this is the first time you hear about Google Keep. As many of Google’s apps and services, unless you go deep in Google’s portfolio page (which is hidden beneath a few layers itself), it can easily go unnoticed. The purpose of the app is to “Keep” notes, as simple as that. Even though there are dozens of apps out there built for that same purpose, personally, I believe that Google Keep does it like no other. Let me explain myself.

Many of these apps designed for taking notes at some point evolve into something more complex. They become a kind of text editor app, with so many options and features that makes taking notes a task far more complicated than it should be.

Google “Keep”, on the other hand, is a light, simple, and easy to use “notes” app. It does the job without all the gimmicks.

Screenshot_2016-01-12-12-13-04

Google keep sample screen.

 

The following is my Google Keep review:

WHO IS IT FOR?
Google Keep, in my opinion, is intended for someone who needs to take quick notes on the go. Small pieces of information that you’ll use later. It could be an address, a short shopping list, some instructions, etc. I often find myself using it also to create checklists for recurrent tasks. For example a checklist of things to include on a blog post, a checklist of things that I can’t forget before going on a trip, or a checklist of things to do at work, etc.

WHY THIS APP
Like I said, there are several options for note taking apps out there, but one of the things that separates this one from the pack is its simplicity. When you want to write down a quick note, you really don’t care about the font type, color, size, or any of those type of features. You just want to write it down as fast as possible and have it a few swipes away when you need that info again. That’s where Google Keep shines over other apps.

Also the way this app displays the notes makes them very accessible to you. Instead of going through several steps of navigation, all of your notes are on the main screen at the very moment you open the app. If you want to find one note you just need to scroll/swipe down to locate it.

One of the few but powerful and extremely useful features the app has is the ability to assign a color to each note. That makes it  easy to spot categories for your notes.

Another great feature is the fact that your notes synchronize between your phone, tablet and desktop. That means your notes are always at your fingertips no matter what device you are using, and since the app is super light you can access them in no time.

The rest of the few features the app has are those you would expect from a “notes” app: attachments, tags, drawings, reminders and sharing capabilities, all packed in a simple light interface.

KEY POINTS
Simple, efficient, synchronizes through all of your devices, fast and easy to use.

Google Keep has become one of my most used apps. If you give it a try, it might surprise you.

You can download Google Keep here: Android | Apple

 

Campaign is a new startup out of California that is trying to change the way we buy, build, and move furniture.  Its founder points to the high cost of furniture shipping as an issue for the average consumer.  If you ordered a sofa online, for example, you can expect to pay on average between $100 and $250 on shipping costs.  Campaign includes the cost of shipping in every piece it sells, which they believe makes their modern furniture a good deal.

The furniture’s construction and packability set it apart from the average low-cost furniture suppliers.  Every mover is familiar with flat-pack IKEA furniture.  Campaign’s furniture comes in a similar packaging through Fed-Ex.  However, no screwdrivers are required for this one.  All of the pieces have a modular quality allowing the consumer to pop the pieces together quickly.  Fast Company has a cool time-lapse video that shows an arm chair being put together in under 3 minutes:

How does this impact moving?  From all reports the materials are sturdier than the average IKEA product.  Rather than particle board, Campaign has used steel to construct their frames.  And they are just as easy to put together as they are to take apart.  Meaning that consumers (and movers) will be able to deconstruct the couch before moving it down a 5-story walk-up.

Couches, love seats, and arm chairs can be pre-ordered now.

Electric-Industry

21st of October 2015, the date in which Marty McFly and Doc Brown travel into the future in Back to the Future 2. That day we probably thought of all the cool stuff we expected from the future back in 1989, when that movie blew us away with hover boards, self-lacing shoes, cool TVs (now called smart TVs), drones, flying cars… it was simply fascinating.

Let us pull a “Back to the Future” on the Moving industry. Can you imagine what the Moving Industry will be like in 10,15 or 20 years? Do you imagine the type of technology we will have access to at that point? Maybe surveys will be made by small drones that will quickly explore the house and create an estimate for the customer, while uploading data and video instantly. Maybe trucks will be filled with some sort of foam (eco friendly, of course) to prevent damages and then will evaporate once you reach your destination. Maybe you will be able to magnetically tag every box which then will guide the crew unloading truck directly to the correct room. Maybe crews will have Exo-suits that will allow them to carry heavy items easily. Fully electric trucks, autonomous trucks, exotic packing materials… OK, I think I got carried away.

The truth is that we are not that far from some of those “predictions” to become real. For example, a while ago we did a post on the first autonomous truck, amazing stuff. Self-driving technology is only getting better and better. Companies like, Google, FreightLiner and Tesla are doing huge improvements on this front.

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fight

Your business’ online reputation may soon get a bigger footprint.  Google recently launched beta testing of AdWords Express home services ads in the San Francisco area.  This first test release only includes “plumbers, locksmiths, house cleaners, and handymen”, however, it’s likely Google will expand these home services ads to any local service provider when the system goes wide.

What does this mean for moving businesses?  Well, that remains to be seen.  But there are a couple things we can count on if this feature is expanded to movers.  First, plan to increase your marketing and AdWords budget to participate.  This will help you show up at the top of the search list for your local customers.

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GOgistiX Mobile

As promised, we launched our suite of mobile applications called GOgistiX® Mobile at this year’s IAM annual meeting in San Diego. We chose that event for the launch because it represents one of the highlights of the year for the Moving Industry and that’s exactly  how we feel about our apps.

The path that has led us to the final release was quite entertaining and full of challenges. Being our first native apps, there was a learning curve we needed to tackle and our outstanding developers did it fast and accurately. After the first prototype was completed and we sat down with our beta testers, we realized we could do better. So we did it, we decided to start the whole project again, from scratch, zero, nada. From that point on, everything went straight forward. Our sweat paid off and now the GOgistiX® Mobile suite has 5 great apps: Survey, Estimate, Inventory, Dashboard and Repair. That is just the beginning, as I am typing, more apps are in the oven.

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IAM Dunk booth - San Diego

IAM’s annual meetings are always fun to attend. You have all kinds of activities to learn, network, do business  and even have fun with your fellow movers, but this year’s FUND night was something else. Is not everyday you can drop a bucket of cold water onto your boss. Did I say that out loud? I’m sorry, let me try that again. Is not everyday you can do something good like donate to the Alan F. Wohlstetter Scholarship Fund…  and drop a bucket of cold water onto your boss.

Some of the players were throwing those balls with such intensity it felt like one of the Royals – Metz games. I remember seeing a glare of joy in some of them, but let’s not get into that.

All jokes aside, it was a FUN-D night. Kudos to IAM for having this great idea and to the dunk-volunteers for being good sports, based on their faces we could tell that water was cold.

If you ask me, sponsoring this event was money well spent, because of our contribution to the Alan F. Wohlstetter Scholarship Fund of course.

Let me share the image of our fearless boss under the cold shower and of our VP of Software Development having the time of his life.

 

FINAL-BLOG-1

No more meetings, gatherings, panels or exhibits hours left. With your room’s key card in your back pocket while you wait at the airport for your flight to depart, you suddenly start thinking about what you are going to do the day after tomorrow when you get back at the office. Some of you who travel to lands far from San Diego, requiring to take several flights, will have to wait more time just to get home. If you decided to drive to San Diego from the East Coast, the wait will be even longer, but who would do that, right?

In any case, one thing is for sure, you will have a deck of business cards so big you could host the next World Series of Poker tournament. Some cards will have some sort of note you quickly scribbled on the back to remind you who that contact is. Some cards will have no note at all, but you think to remember they are important. Finally you’ll have the cards you have no idea why you have them and that don’t seem to represent a real business opportunity. How do you manage all these types of cards efficiently so that you do not risk losing a business opportunity?

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Visit us at booth 500.

This year’s IAM conference is around the corner. Excitement keeps growing, and we want to give it a boost. We know, we know, it’s hard to top Terry Head being plunged in the dunk tank but keep reading and you’ll see what we are talking about.

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MOVESTAR-Release

Customer Relations Manager, Cindy Railine, sent an email last week about some new updates to EDC-MoveStar. Here’s a brief summary:

  • Now it’s easier to send GSA data to the government with an updated EDI functionality
  • The tariff module has been expanded to support multiple branches, labor costs, packing and service types
  • We made improvements to the dispatch module and capacity calendar screens
  • There were some tweaks to the estimator calendar section in the Leads module to make it easier to schedule sales appointments
  • We created more in-depth lead conversion reporting to track your sales staff’s performance
  • There is a new integration to Moving.com to bring more leads into your system
  • And a lot more

The complete set of release note details is available under the Support tab of your EDC-MoveStar software. You can also find instructions there for how to use these updated features.

As always, if you have any questions or need assistance, users can contact us with the support center tab in EDC-MoveStar. And, of course, if you aren’t an EDC-MoveStar user but would like to learn more, please email us at sales@edcus.com to schedule an online demonstration.

Yesterday, Microsoft released a security patch for Windows, and we are urging all our customers to update immediately.  At the risk of frightening anyone before they have had their morning coffee, you should know this is a pretty big deal.

Without the patch, your Windows PC contains a security flaw that could give attackers full access to your computer.  By exploiting a vulnerability in OpenType fonts, if you visit a compromised website or open an unsafe document, an attacker can essentially stroll right into your computer.  This flaw affects Windows Vista, Windows 2008, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1, Windows Server 2012, Windows RT, and Windows RT 8.1.   Unfortunately, if you are running the Windows 10 Insider Preview, you are also at risk.

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