Chariot the private bus startup for commuters to shutter operations

first_imgChariot has operations in 10 US cities and in London. Ford Chariot, the private bus startup, is going out of business.On Thursday, CEO Dan Grossman announced Chariot will cease all operations by the end of the March. The decision to close the service was made after “significant consideration,” he wrote in a blog post. It appears the company’s business model wasn’t viable.”It has become clear — through many indicators such as ridership — that the mobility services delivered by Chariot over the past five years will not be a sustainable solution going forward,” a Chariot spokeswoman said in an email.Chariot’s goal was to provide an alternative to public transportation for a slightly higher fee — usually between $1.50 to $3 more per ride. The service launched in San Francisco in April 2014 and has since spread to nine other US cities and to London. Ford acquired Chariot for $65 million in September 2016.The company focused on shuttling commuters from outer neighborhoods to downtown areas and financial districts using midsized vans. Grossman said Chariot provided more than 3 million rides over the past five years. Some urban planners have criticized the company for catering to affluent clientele and unfairly competing with cities’ public transit systems.The startup tussled with the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency last year for running routes along city bus lines, according to the San Francisco Examiner. This caused the city agency to establish new regulations that barred Chariot from creating any more routes that mirrored public transit lines. “We are going to continue to do our work to provide and improve Muni [public transit] service for more than 730,000 riders a day across the city,” SFMTA spokesman Paul Rose said of Chariot’s closure. “We will continue working to ensure that our service is easy, convenient and affordable for all San Franciscans across the city.”Chariot isn’t the only private shuttle startup to end operations. Competitor Leap, which launched a luxury bus service (complete with Blue Bottle coffee and cold-pressed juices) in San Francisco in 2014, also closed. Leap was forced to shut down in 2015 after not securing proper operating permits from the state of California.Grossman said Chariot will halt all of its bus routes in the UK on Jan. 25, followed by a US shutdown of service on Feb. 1. All other operations at the company will terminate by the end of March.First published Jan. 10, 3:21 p.m. PT. Update, 5:12 p.m.: Adds comment from a Chariot spokeswoman and from SFMTA spokesman Paul Rose.CNET Magazine: Check out a sampling of the stories you’ll find in CNET’s newsstand edition.The Smartest Stuff: Innovators are thinking up new ways to make you, and the things around you, smarter. Share your voice Tags 1center_img Comment Mobile Roadshowlast_img read more

Mattis makes surprise Afghanistan visit

first_imgIn this file photo taken on 9 November, 2017 US defence minister James Mattis delivers a press conference during the second day of a defence ministers meeting at NATO headquarters in Brussels. Photo: AFPUS defence secretary Jim Mattis met with top Afghan leaders during an unannounced visit to Kabul on Friday, adding his weight to a flurry of diplomatic efforts to bring the Taliban to the negotiating table.His trip comes a little more than a year after president Donald Trump unveiled a revamped strategy for Afghanistan that saw him commit thousands of additional US forces to the war-torn country on an open-ended basis.Mattis, on his fourth visit to Afghanistan since becoming defence chief in January 2017, has met with president Ashraf Ghani and the new US commander for American and NATO forces, general Scott Miller.His arrival in Kabul comes at a sensitive time in the 17-year war.The grinding conflict has seen little progress by Afghan or US forces against the Taliban, the country’s largest militant group.Six US soldiers have been killed in Afghanistan so far this year, the most recent happening on Monday in an apparent insider attack.Ghani told Mattis that preventing so-called “green-on-blue” attacks, in which Afghan soldiers turn their weapons on international troops with whom they are working, was a “top national priority”.They also discussed other issues including the peace process, security reforms, upcoming parliamentary and presidential elections, and Pakistan, according to a statement from the presidential palace.Afghan and international players have been ratcheting up efforts to hold peace talks with the Taliban, which was toppled from power by US-led forces in 2001.An unprecedented ceasefire in June followed by talks between US officials and Taliban representatives in Qatar in July fuelled hopes that negotiations could bring an end to the fighting.Battlefield setbacksBut a recent spate of attacks by the Taliban and the smaller but potent Islamic State group that left hundreds of people dead has severely dented that optimism.A twin bomb attack on a wrestling club in a Shiite neighbourhood of Kabul on Wednesday was just the latest in a long line of devastating assaults, killing at least 26 people and wounding 91.The attack underscored the challenges facing Afghanistan’s beleaguered security forces, which have been beset by corruption and low morale.Trump’s strategy, announced in August 2017, increased the US troop presence in the country and now includes a renewed push to bring the Taliban to the negotiating table.Speaking to reporters as he headed to Asia this week, Mattis said he had reason to hope the Taliban may be ready for talks.There’s “still hard fighting, but right now we have more indications that reconciliation is… no longer just a mirage”, he said, adding that Afghan security forces were now taking the fight to the enemy.But there are fears that Trump is growing frustrated with the pace of progress in the country, spurring US diplomats and other officials to intensify their efforts.The Taliban have long insisted on direct talks with Washington and refused to negotiate with the Afghan government, which they see as illegitimate.There is speculation that another meeting between US and Taliban representatives could be held this month.US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo visited Islamabad on Wednesday where he said he was “hopeful” of resetting the troubled relationship with Pakistan, a key player in the Afghan conflict.He made the remarks after confirming that Zalmay Khalilzad, a high-profile former US ambassador to Kabul, Baghdad and the United Nations, would be appointed to lead peace efforts in Afghanistan.Miller, who took command of US and NATO forces at a handover ceremony in Kabul on Sunday, replaces General John Nicholson, who rotated out of the role after a more than two-year deployment.Nicholson told reporters last month that the warring parties now had an “unprecedented” opportunity for peace, and insisted Trump’s strategy for the country was working.But his positive outlook belied recent setbacks on the battlefield, including last month’s extraordinary raid by the Taliban on the provincial capital of Ghazni-just a two-hour drive from Kabul.Militants held large parts of the city for days and Afghan forces needed US air power to push them back.last_img read more

Protester dies during curfew in Kashmir

first_imgIn this picture taken on 6 August 2019 security personnel stand guard on a street in Srinagar. Photo: AFPA protester died after being chased by police during a curfew in Kashmir’s main city, left in turmoil by an Indian government move to tighten control over the restive region, a police official said Wednesday.The death was confirmed by police after the government passed a presidential decree on Monday stripping the Muslim majority state of its longstanding semi-autonomous privileges.Despite a paralysing curfew, imposed to head off unrest, sporadic protests have been reported by residents in the main city Srinagar.A police official, speaking on condition of anonymity, told AFP that in one incident a youth being chased by police “jumped into the Jhelum river and died.”The incident happened in Srinagar’s old town which has become a hotbed of anti-India protests during the three decade-long insurgency in Kashmir that has left tens of thousands dead.A source told AFP that at least six people have been admitted to hospital in Srinagar with gunshot wounds and other injuries from protests.Indian police insist that Kashmir, which is also claimed by Pakistan, has been mainly peaceful since the curfew was imposed at midnight Sunday.last_img read more

Special Election for Uresti State Senate Seat Underway

first_imgThe winner of the special election will finish Uresti’s term, which ends January 2021.Voters can use to find out if they’re registered and their polling location options on the Bexar County election page.MORE | Voter turnout during early voting DAVID MARTIN DAVIES / TEXAS PUBLIC RADIOA special election for a seat in the Texas Senate is Tuesday.Eight candidates are vying to replace San Antonio Democrat Carlos Uresti, who resigned last month after being convicted of 11 felonies, in state Senate District 19.MAP | Texas Senate District 19 Sharecenter_img The Democratic-leaning district, which includes parts of Bexar County and covers more than 400 miles of the U.S.-Mexico border, is facing challenges from top Texas Republicans, including Pete Flores, who ran against and lost to Uresti in 2016 but earned 40 percent of the vote.Gov. Greg Abbott endorsed the retired game warden Sunday. On the Democratic side, the two highest-profile candidates are state Rep. Roland Gutierrez and former Congressman Pete Gallego. The two other Democrats are attorney Charlie Urbina Jones, and Carlos Uresti’s brother, outgoing state Rep. Tomas Uresti, D-San Antonio.VIEW | Sample ballotlast_img read more

Several Thousand Migrant Children In US Custody Could Be Released Before Christmas

first_imgBrynn Anderson/APMigrant children run around a track outside at the Homestead Temporary Shelter for Unaccompanied Children in Homestead, Fla. Shelters that house these children are reaching capacity and the federal government is now working to speed releases to sponsors.Updated at 4:59 pm ETThe Department of Health and Human Services is changing the ways it conducts background checks on sponsors of migrant children, a surprise move that will mean the release of hundreds of such children from controversial government-contracted shelters across the country.The Trump administration had come under fire for holding nearly 15,000 migrant children in 137 shelters. The vast majority of the children are “unaccompanied alien children” who crossed the border without parents or legal guardians. The administration has been criticized for long delays in releasing them to live with sponsors while their asylum cases are pending in immigration court. In a turnabout, the government now agrees the vetting of sponsors — usually a parent or family member — was taking too long.“The children should be home with their parents. The government makes lousy parents,” said Lynn Johnson, assistant secretary at Health and Human Services’ Administration for Children and Families, in an interview with NPR.“We’re finding [the extra screening] is not adding anything to the protection or the safety of the children,” she added.To speed the release of children, HHS has decided to drop a requirement, put into place just six months ago, that everyone in a sponsor’s household be fingerprinted and receive an extensive criminal background check. That extra vetting had slowed down the process. Starting immediately, only the sponsors will continue to be fingerprinted and run through FBI and state databases and through Department of Homeland Security records.A source familiar with the operation of the sprawling tent camp in Tornillo, Texas, said children in that facility had waited 50 days, even after all the vetting was completed. He said there are 1,300 children ready to be discharged.Johnson said there are about 2,000 children in the shelter system who are ready to be released to already vetted parents in the next four to five days.“I don’t want to cause any additional harm by keeping kids in care any longer than they need to when they have a thoroughly vetted parent waiting for them,” she said.On Tuesday, there were 14,600 children in a system whose capacity is 16,000. At 91 percent capacity, the government has to either add beds or release children. The number of children in the government’s care has doubled since March, as more Central American teenagers are crossing the border without their parents, and the wait time in shelters has lengthened.HHS has already spent $144 million on the Tornillo facility, where it employs some 2,000 employees to care for 2,800 children. The nonprofit that operates Tornillo has stressed how it strives to make the children as comfortable and happy as possible, but child welfare experts say detention is simply wrong for children.“This is really an extraordinary development, and one that should dramatically reduce the number of children in federal immigration custody,” said Neha Desai, senior attorney at the National Center for Youth Law. This group and others filed a lawsuit last month challenging the extra background checks that were prolonging children’s stay in shelters.“The new policy should never have been enacted in the first place,” she said, “but I’m truly thrilled that the government has finally acknowledged its deeply flawed approach and chosen to correct course.”Johnson said the rule change would not affect an agreement whereby HHS shares sponsor information with Immigration and Customs and Enforcement. Critics have warned that some potential sponsors are reluctant to come forward knowing that they are possibly making themselves targets of deportation agents. So far, ICE has arrested 170 immigrants who applied with HHS to sponsor children but are in the country unlawfully. Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org. Sharelast_img read more

Governors Volunteer Appreciation Day at the Maryland State Fair

first_imgGov. Martin O’Malley extends an invitation to all Marylanders involved in volunteer service to spend a fun-filled Sunday at the Maryland State Fair on August 24. The Governor’s Volunteer Appreciation Day is presented by the Governor’s office on Service and Volunteerism and the Maryland State Fair.“Each year Maryland’s volunteers give over 190 million hours of their time to our communities and we thank them for their service,” said Gov. O’Malley in a statement. “I invite every volunteer in the State to come to the Maryland State Fair on August 24 to celebrate the 2014 Governor’s Volunteer Appreciation Day.”To thank Maryland’s volunteers for their countless hours of service, Gov. O’Malley is offering them  discounted admission, $2, to the Maryland State Fair on August 24. Each pass allows admission of up to five (5) people who have volunteered in Maryland during the past year. The pass will also entitle the patron to discounts on the purchase of food tickets and ride packages from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on August 24 only. The discounted food and ride passes will be good until closing. In case of inclement weather that forces the closing of the Fair on that date, the Governor’s discounts will be honored on August 31. To request passes, visit www.GOSV.maryland.gov.last_img read more

Netflix Gives Second Season to Indian Crime Series Sacred Games

first_imgKashyap will continue directing Gaitonde’s track, while Neeraj Ghaywan (“Masaan”) will take over Singh’s plot. Motwane and Varun Grover will continue their roles as showrunner and lead writer, respectively.“We’ve been thrilled by the response to ‘Sacred Games’ from fans worldwide, and especially in India,” said Erik Barmack, VP, International Originals at Netflix. Global streaming giant, Netflix has ordered a second season of crime series “Sacred Games.” The Hindi- and English-language show was Netflix’s first Original series made in India.The Mumbai-set show explores the city’s web of organized crime, corruption, politics and espionage that lie beneath India’s economic renaissance, and pits a jaded cop against India’s most wanted gangster and is based on Vikram Chandra’s best-selling novel. Production is by Netflix and Phantom Films, a directors’ collective formed by Vikas Bahl, Anurag Kashyap, Vikramaditya Motwane and Madhu Mantena in 2011.“The second season picks up from Sartaj Singh (played by Saif Ali Khan) pursuing his relentless battle of saving the city and Ganesh Gaitonde (Nawazuddin Siddiqui) facing bigger challenges to retain his position as the legendary kingpin of Mumbai. The intriguing Guruji (Pankaj Tripathi), introduced in season one as Gaitonde’s third father, plays a pivotal role in unfolding a chain of events that shape the next season,” Netflix said. Production in India and abroad is scheduled later this year. ×Actors Reveal Their Favorite Disney PrincessesSeveral actors, like Daisy Ridley, Awkwafina, Jeff Goldblum and Gina Rodriguez, reveal their favorite Disney princesses. Rapunzel, Mulan, Ariel,Tiana, Sleeping Beauty and Jasmine all got some love from the Disney stars.More VideosVolume 0%Press shift question mark to access a list of keyboard shortcutsKeyboard Shortcutsplay/pauseincrease volumedecrease volumeseek forwardsseek backwardstoggle captionstoggle fullscreenmute/unmuteseek to %SPACE↑↓→←cfm0-9Next UpJennifer Lopez Shares How She Became a Mogul04:350.5x1x1.25×1.5x2xLive00:0002:1502:15center_img Popular on Variety last_img read more

Measuring metabolism in dolphins to calculate their caloric needs

first_img © 2018 Phys.org Virus cause of more than 170 dolphin deaths in Brazil Explore further Climate change is expected to have an impact on wildlife across the globe. As temperatures creep upward, researchers study various species to better understand how this might affect them. In this new effort, the researchers sought to learn more about the food intake needs of bottlenose dolphins living off the coast of Florida in Sarasota Bay.To understand how much food a wild dolphin requires to live, the team looked at ocean temperatures, various states of dolphin activity and most particularly at the dolphins themselves. They noted that dolphins, like other mammals, require energy to fuel brain activity and to keep up with busy muscles—and also to keep warm. Because of this, they require different amounts of food depending on how active they are and how cold the water is.To calculate the caloric needs of the dolphins, the researchers started with data from prior studies, which have shown that the daily metabolic rate for many species averages out to approximately three to six times that of their resting rate. For the dolphins, that meant capturing several specimens and measuring their metabolic rate while they were kept at rest and then multiplying by three to six to get their average rates.The team reports that they found that the dolphins under study (with an average weight of 200 kg) required approximately 16,500 to 33,000 calories each day, which they further note translated to approximately 10 to 25 kg of fish each day. As part of the study, the group also tested lung function in the dolphins, which has been found to be a marker of environmental health in marine species.The researchers suggest studies like theirs will help with conservation efforts as the planet changes—if dolphins begin to require less food, for example, due to warmer water, that could lead to an increase in fish populations. More information: A. Fahlman et al. Field energetics and lung function in wild bottlenose dolphins, Tursiops truncatus , in Sarasota Bay Florida, Royal Society Open Science (2018). DOI: 10.1098/rsos.171280AbstractWe measured respiratory flow rates, and expired O2 in 32 (2–34 years, body mass [Mb] range: 73–291 kg) common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) during voluntary breaths on land or in water (between 2014 and 2017). The data were used to measure the resting O2 consumption rate (V˙O2V˙O2, range: 0.76–9.45 ml O2 min−1 kg−1) and tidal volume (VT, range: 2.2–10.4 l) during rest. For adult dolphins, the resting VT, but not V˙O2V˙O2, correlated with body mass (Mb, range: 141–291 kg) with an allometric mass-exponent of 0.41. These data suggest that the mass-specific VT of larger dolphins decreases considerably more than that of terrestrial mammals (mass-exponent: 1.03). The average resting sV˙O2sV˙O2 was similar to previously published metabolic measurements from the same species. Our data indicate that the resting metabolic rate for a 150 kg dolphin would be 3.9 ml O2 min−1 kg−1, and the metabolic rate for active animals, assuming a multiplier of 3–6, would range from 11.7 to 23.4 ml O2 min−1 kg−1.absbreak Our measurements provide novel data for resting energy use and respiratory physiology in wild cetaceans, which may have significant value for conservation efforts and for understanding the bioenergetic requirements of this species. Citation: Measuring metabolism in dolphins to calculate their caloric needs (2018, January 17) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-01-metabolism-dolphins-caloric.htmlcenter_img Bottlenose Dolphin – Tursiops truncatus. A dolphin surfs the wake of a research boat on the Banana River – near the Kennedy Space Center. Credit: Public Domain A team of researchers from several institutions in the U.S. and one in Spain has measured the metabolism of wild bottlenose dolphins in an effort to better understand their caloric needs. In their paper published in the journal Royal Society Open Science, the group describes measuring the dolphins, what they found, and explain how their findings can help with conservation efforts. Journal information: Royal Society Open Science This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

Petrol pump manager shot at Rs 12 lakh looted

first_imgKolkata: A gang of miscreants looted Rs 12 lakh from a petrol pump manager at Hooghly’s Balagarh when he was going to a nearby branch of a nationlised bank to deposit the amount. The incident took place on broad day light on Moday. The victim manager, Bikash Das sustained bullet injuries when he refused to let go of the bag containing cash. He has been undergoing treatment at Calcutta Medical College and Hospital. His condition is stated to be serious. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifePolice said the victim was going to deposit the amount in the bank at around 10.30 am when motorcycle borne miscreants stopped his way near Balagarh.They asked him to hand over the bag. As he refused to do so, one of the miscreants took out a gun and shot at him. The accused snatched the bag from the victim and fledthe spot.According to police, the manager was riding his motorcycle when the incident took place. Das fell on the road after receiving bullet injuries on his left hand. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedA local who came to his rescue was threatened with dire consequences.The miscreants fired in the air to terrorise locals while fleeing the spot.The locals later rescued the injured person and took him to hospital. As his health condition deteriorated, Das was shifted to Calcutta Medical College and Hospital on Monday afternoon. The incident triggered tension in Balagarh area. After being informed, police reached the spot and started a probe. According to the preliminary investigation, police suspect that the miscreants followed the manager from the petrol pump itself. Locals said a similar incident had taken place in Balagarh two years ago. Raids are being conducted to nab the culprits.last_img read more

Excess or poor sleep may up heart disease

first_imgToo much or too little sleep can increase the risk of cardiovascular disease and early death, according to a study of over 116,000 people from across the world published recently. The researchers found that people who slept for longer than the recommended duration of six to eight hours a day had an increased risk of early death or developing diseases of the heart or blood vessels in the brain. Compared to people who slept for the recommended time, those who slept a total of eight to nine hours a day had a five Also Read – Add new books to your shelf per cent increased risk; people sleeping between nine and ten hours a day had an increased risk of 17 per cent and those sleeping more than ten hours a day had a 41 per cent increased risk. They also found a nine per cent increased risk for people who slept a total of six or fewer hours, but this finding was not statistically significant. Before adjusting for factors that might affect the results, the researchers found that for every 1,000 people sleeping six or fewer hours a night, 9.4 developed cardiovascular disease (CVD) or died per year. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveThis occurred in 7.8 of those sleeping six to eight hours, 8.4 of those sleeping eight to nine hours, 10.4 of those sleeping nine to ten hours and 14.8 of those sleeping more than ten hours. “Our study shows that the optimal duration of estimated sleep is six to eight hours per day for adults,” said Chuangshi Wang, a PhD student at McMaster University in Canada. “Given that this is an observational study that can only show an association rather than proving a causal relationship, we cannot say that too much sleep per se causes cardiovascular diseases,” Wang said, lead author of the study published in the European Heart Journal. “However, too little sleep could be an underlying contributor to death and cases of cardiovascular disease, and too much sleep may indicate underlying conditions that increase risk,” she said. Associations between sleep and death or cardiovascular and other diseases have been suggested by other studies, but results have been contradictory. In addition, they tended to look at particular populations and did not necessarily take account of the fact that in some countries daytime napping can be common and considered healthy. The study looked at a total of 116,632 adults aged between 35 and 70 years in 21 countries with different income levels in seven geographic regions (North America and Europe, South America, the Middle East, South Asia, Southeast Asia, China and Africa). During an average (median) follow-up time of nearly eight years, 4,381 people died and 4,365 suffered a major cardiovascular problem such as a heart attack or stroke. Researchers found that regular daytime naps were more common in the Middle East, China, Southeast Asia and South America. The duration of daytime naps varied mainly from 30 to 60 minutes. People who slept six or fewer hours at night, but took a daytime nap, and so slept an average of 6.4 hours a day in total, had a slightly increased risk compared to those who slept between six and eight hours at night without a daytime nap, but this finding was not statistically significant. “Although daytime napping was associated with higher risks of death or cardiovascular problems in those with sufficient or longer sleep at night, this was not the case in people who slept under six hours at night,” Wang said. “In these individuals, a daytime nap seemed to compensate for the lack of sleep at night and to mitigate the risks,” she further added.last_img read more

12 Tech MustHaves

first_imgJune 14, 2010 6 min read Register Now » This story appears in the June 2010 issue of Entrepreneurs StartUps Magazine. Subscribe » 9. Verizon MiFi 2200 Intelligent Mobile Hotspot ($50)Staying connected to the Web on the road can be obscenely expensive: Expect to part with north of $700 for year-long data access fees. But relying on third-party hotspots and hotel WiFi is a recipe for disaster. So bite the bullet and get a mobile data plan. But instead of going with an old-school USB or modem card to get online, use this slick portable hotspot from Verizon. The MiFi takes cellular access and makes it into a local WiFi hotspot you can share. Though other carriers like Sprint have similar mobile offerings, Verizon can sell you mobile data by the week or month, which really takes out the sting of access fees. TIP: Look for promising contacts in airports and be generous: offer to share your access.10. Ultimate Ears MetroFi 170vi headphones ($60)No matter what mobile phone you get, first-quality, old-school wired ear buds and a mic are the single best thing you can get to improve voice quality, hear your tunes as they were recorded and otherwise do your best to avoid brain cancer. The pick right now for in-ear headphones is the Ultimate Ears MetroFi 170svi. The most rewarding $60 you’ll probably ever spend.11. Clickfree C2 Portable BackUp 250 GB ($120)Fail to back up your data at your own peril. Considering how idiot-proof hardware like Clickfree makes backing up your stuff, there is just no excuse for going unprotected. Simply plug in this small portable device to your computer, do what it tells you to do and repeat every week or so. Trust us, you’ll save yourself a world of hurt.12. WowWee Cinemin Swivel Pico Projector ($260)Every dreamer needs a great way to sell that dream. This is it. Turn it on, jack it into the output of your new laptop, iPhone or BlackBerry, and project your Powerpoint, video presentation or stills on any wall. Yup, that means the office wall, bar wall or elevator wall become your own private sales zone. And how cool to show up for the big pitch without having to mess with that clunky, old projector. Pulling this out of your pocket–it’s about the size of a cigarette pack–is a stylish and effective way to get your message across. 8. Apple iPhone 3G ($99) or BlackBerry Bold 9700 Refurb (free)If your business life is all about the app-based product, by all means Go iPhone. Nobody, not Android or Windows 7, can touch that. But if yours is a text-oriented, keyboard shop, you want BlackBerry–specifically, the Bold 9700. It’s big, fast and works with everything. The great part is, you can make this call at one store: AT&T. The old Ma Bell sells both the iPhone and is offering a great small-biz deal: refurbished 9700’s for the price of a contract. Try them both. See what feels best and go with it. 3. Google Apps and OpenOffice productivity software suites (free)Google Apps and OpenOffice do not come anywhere near Microsoft Office in terms of features–Excel devotees, in particular, will lose their minds on Google Docs Spreadsheets. But when combined, these two programs have many virtues. They offer powerful collaboration tools and get your shop working on the Internet cloud. Be sure to allow some training time: Some things, like document collaboration, are better done with Google; others, like document layout and tricky calculations, are more suited on OpenOffice. There is no better deal in small business tech right now.4. Acer X203H 20 Inch Wide Monitor ($120)Why pay a lot for idiot-proof stuff like monitors? No need. For a measly $120 you get a legit 20-inch imaging device that plugs right into your new Dell. Your new big screen eases eye strain, improves posture and, alas, lengthens your work day.5. Epson WorkForce 610 All-In-One Printer ($199)For the full on, max sense of the absurd value in today’s tech dollar, look no further than desktop imaging. Makers like HP, Brother and Samsung all offer great, low cost products, but for the startup, we give the nod to Epson. Not only fast and cheap, Epson excels in image quality on the printed page. For about the price of taking the family out for a ballgame, you get a near-professional-quality printing, scanning, faxing and copying device. And with a bit of trial and error you really can create business-quality cards, envelopes and brochures. Ridiculously powerful. Caveat: Watch your ink consumption. Replacement cartridges will kill you.6 &7. Microsoft Arc Keyboard ($60) and Gyration Air Mouse ($80)Your spiffy office would not be complete without a quality keyboard/mouse combo that reduces hand strain, increases productivity and lets you wow ’em come presentation time. Though it gets no street cred, Microsoft is doing sterling work with its comfy Arc keyboards. And Gyration is the leader in air mouses that need no desk (just point it at the screen). You’ll grow to love it.center_img 1. Humanscale Diffrient World Mesh Back Task Chair (starting at $600)New York-based Humanscale, a high-end maker of office products, has worked hard to bring some of its best chairs within reach of small budgets. For our money–and yours, considering how much time you will spend in that command position– the Diffrient World line (named for designer Nils Diffrient) is the right balance of ergonomics, good looks and value. At this price, it’s a bargain. And your back will thank us. 2. Dell Vostro 1015 Notebook PC ($450)Fear not, Mac heads: You will get your Steve Jobs style points when we get to smart phones; but the fact is, burning three quarters of your budget on a MacBook makes no sense, when a mere $450 buys an awesome notebook from Dell–a basic black, 15-inch Dell Vostro running Windows 7 Home Premium. Skip the Microsoft Office software and instead get a free Google Apps account (more on that later). And stay away from fancy memory upgrades, beefier processors or extended service plans. Eventually, you will need to upgrade to a better PC and Microsoft Office as you grow. But for now keep it cheap, fast and simple. Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Global Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. Welcome to the golden age of small business technology. If the grueling Great Recession has a silver lining, it’s this: Tech vendors are innovating and discounting. From furnishings to computers to mobile devices, consumer electronics have never offered the start-up enterprise more for less. What it used to cost for a computer, printer and some software will now get the savvy entrepreneur an entire office. So if you’re ready to start that business, you owe it to yourself to check out these 12 essentials, all for about two grand.last_img read more

Polish cable operator Multimedia Polska has launch

first_imgPolish cable operator Multimedia Polska has launched a new MaxBox package and renamed its existing packages MiniBox and SuperBox, adding more channels.MiniBox now offers 78 channels, 13 more than the old basic digital package, including six HD service for PLN49 (€12). SuperBox now includes 108 channels, as opposed to 95 in the previous Comfort package, including nin HD services for PLN59.The all-new MaxBox package comprises 127 channels including 13 HD channels and a range of kids, movie, TV and sports services for PLN69. A full multi-play package of MaxBox with DVR, internet and telephony will cost PLN120.Basic, Family and Comfort packages will continue to be made available to analogue customers.last_img read more