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Westminster, MD

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Five ways to trick out your work station


If you’re going to be behind a desk for eight hours or more a day, you may as well make the space your own. In fact, one of the best things about being an entrepreneur or start-up hero is that you’re not bound to the cube life and you can create a personalized, unconventional space. Here are a few tech and life hacks to trick out your workstation.

Five messenger apps for business that improve email

messenger apps

Messenger apps for business communication

Today’s small businesses and entrepreneurs need communications tools that can keep up.

Email and cluttered inboxes are out and streamlined, secure messenger and chat services are in. Where email fails, messenger apps pickup so that businesses can stay connected, collaborate and work efficiently. They also provide affordable, high-tech options that can better serve today’s advanced business culture.

Let’s explore a few messaging apps that enhance communications and help you succeed at work in the digital age.

How fiber optics work: getting down to fiber basics

How fiber optics work

Learning how fiber optics work

To those of us who are perhaps less familiar with the practical applications of communicating with light, it can seem almost like magic how fiber optics work. Pictures, videos, emails, phone calls and more, traveling through glass fibers as thin as human hair, all at the speed of light. Fiber optics technology is a marvel of human ingenuity, not to mention physics and design, and with it comes high-capacity digital communications for a modern age.

Historically, copper was used to wire homes to telecommunications networks, mostly for the use of telephones. In many ways, copper was suited for voice signal. However, with the advent of the Internet, copper’s time had come. As with all major technological shifts though, especially when there’s infrastructure involved, the change doesn’t happen overnight. Fiber is the infrastructure that will meet our massive and growing digital needs.

If you’re curious about how fiber optics work on a smaller scale (with big implications), read on. This post will cover how optically pure glass strands are used to transmit information as light as compared with copper, that transmits information as electrical signals.

College basketball streaming: a cord cutter’s guide

college basketball streaming

Watching college basketball online and over the air

The 2017 college basketball season is now here and watching as a cord cutter is easier than ever!

We’ve put together a helpful guide to watching college basketball without the high cost and long-term contracts of cable TV. Between over-the-air channels you can receive with an antenna to multiple online streaming services, including some free options, you won’t miss a thing.

Faster Internet service for the Franzese family

Guest writer

Michael Nepini joins us from McDaniel College where he’s double-majoring in Accounting Economics and Business Administration.

Internet service

Meet the Franzeses

The Franzeses came to us during Fallfest to tell us about how much they love their new Ting Internet service. They have been Ting customers since the day Ting came to their neighborhood in August of 2017. They use the Internet for a wide variety of activities, from gaming to streaming and programming. They love that everyone can use the Internet at the same time without their connection slowing down.

Why they switched

Nanci told us they switched because they were exasperated with their prior service provider. With their old service, they routinely experienced speeds almost as slow as dial-up. Frustrated, they called their service provider, hoping for a solution. Their service provider told them that they were actually getting a higher speed than they were supposed to, and that they were going to be slowed down even further. Nanci told them, “oh no you don’t, this is not going to happen, my whole house is going to explode. Just forget I called, and I’ll let you know Ting is coming to our neighborhood and we’re just going to switch!”

That’s precisely what they did.

A typical day of Internet usage

Nanci runs a daycare out of their home. She likes to share special moments with the children’s parents, so she posts lots of pictures of them and keeps updates of what’s going on. Her husband, Robert, is a programmer who’s also a computer technology professor at Carroll Community College. He uses the Internet every day to grade assignments and keep in touch with his students. He also does some programming as a side job, so fast Internet helps him keep up with his work. Nanci and Robert’s children enjoy playing online multiplayer games with their friends. They like to stream music and use the Internet to keep up with their schoolwork. The whole family likes to watch streaming movies together now, which is something they couldn’t do with their old Internet service.

“Ting Internet saved my family.”

Nanci told us that Ting Internet saved her family. Because their old service was so slow, Nanci’s children would change the password so she and Robert couldn’t get online. They would argue with their children to get the password, but as soon as they had it, another one would change it again. The constant struggle for bandwidth caused many arguments and frustration in their home. She said now her family is getting along much better since everyone can use the Internet at the same time.

Ting’s crazy fast fiber Internet helps the Franzeses keep up with their busy lives without dealing with all the annoyances of a slow Internet connection. They are able to use all the technology they want now that their Internet service can keep up.

The Westminster Oyster Stroll and winners of the Oyster Dish Design Challenge

Guest writer

Michael Nepini joins us from McDaniel College where he’s double-majoring in Accounting Economics and Business Administration.

Oyster Stroll

Westminster’s annual Oyster Stroll

This weekend, we set up a booth at the 2017 Westminster Oyster Stroll. It was a great day of music, food, and fun for the community. The Oyster Stroll was designed to raise awareness about Chesapeake farm-raised oysters and show how our local community is working to restore wild oysters back into the Bay.

All day Saturday, Main Street was filled with vendors serving oysters in a variety of different ways, from raw to steamed and even grilled. There were fun and educational activities for the whole family. Kids could enjoy the free face painting and a story with crafts hosted by the Westminster library. Adults could enjoy the three bands playing music up and down Main Street, as well as various demonstrations about oyster shucking and conservation efforts.

The event served as a way to bring awareness to the important role oysters play in cleaning the Chesapeake. The Coastal Conservation Association of Maryland hosted a demonstration on oyster filtration in the water. Another group demonstrated how to make concrete reef balls that help reinforce oyster populations.