Kate Ross

  • Issues with Cell Networks during Crisis

    August 25, 2011 - Leave a Comment

        Whether it is a medical information, or safety emergency, I want my cell phone close by.   Kennesaw State University, where I am currently a senior, relies on the cell phone network to inform students of pertinent information regarding campus.  For example, last year while sitting through a lecture all of the students phones started to vibrate.  I picked up my phone to see that the university was informing us we were on lockdown due to an escaped convict who had been spotted in one of the university buildings.  This example is only one way that the university system uses cell phones in cases of emergencies.  This is also an example of how we all rely on our cell phones to keep us and others informed.

    A time that the cell phone service was overloaded and down was during September 11th in NYC.  As the east coast experienced a 5.9 magnitude earth quake people swarmed the streets and began taking to their cell phones.  Because of the volume of cell traffic, it managed to clog the wireless networks in the Washington D.C. area.  Foxnews reports that this example is a large reminder about not only the shortcomings of our emergency communication, but also the lack of work that has been done to fix this problem.

    Read more:  http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2011/08/24/quake-exposes-cracks-in-cell-phone-coverage-emergency-response/#ixzz1W3iJNuMg

  • Cell Phone User Statistics

    August 16, 2011 - Leave a Comment

    The Pew Research Center has released a new report titled Americans and Their Cell Phones.  With cell phone use and ownership continually rising, the survey finds a topic that applies to all of us.  Whether you are guilty of sending and receiving text, pictures, or video messages or just using your phone to avoid an awkward interaction with others, this report offers a statistic for all of these aspects of cell phone use.  A few of the stats really caught my eye as a smart phone user.

    • 42% of cell owners used their phone for entertainment when they were bored.  I am guilty of using my smart phone as entertainment while I’m waiting in line, listening to a particularly boring lecture, or when there is nothing on TV.
    •  20% of cell owners experienced frustration because their phone was taking too long to download something.
    • 51% of adult cell owners have used their phone at least one time to get information they needed immediately.   Let us not forget about those heated family or friend debates!  You need facts to help prove your side of the argument, or even just to squash that family quarrel between your mother and brother.

    I do not have to worry about the frustration of cell phone ownership because of my zBoost cell phone signal booster.  My zBoost has helped me in every one of these scenarios from boredom to frustration!  Not only does it relieve me from upload and download delays, but I never have to worry about not receiving or dropping important calls.

    To read Americans and Their Cell Phones in its entirety for all cell phone stats click here.

  • 10 Organization Tips

    August 8, 2011 - Leave a Comment

    How important is being able to organize well in your daily life?  The importance will vary depending on a person’s personality and life involvement.  As a university student who is carrying a full course load and interning with Wi-Ex, organization is a must!  Between due dates for school papers or projects and deadlines at work, I have to be organized to keep it all straight.  We all know that person, whether it be a fellow classmate, teammate, or coworker, that seems to wait until the last minute because “they forgot” or “lost track of the work”.  We also all know that person where everything has to be “perfect” all the time.  Both of these personalities can be exhausting!  We all need to find that balance between perfection and disorganization in order to navigate work and life efficiently and with minimal stress.  Oprah.com listed the “10 habits of highly organized people” to help us all work towards or achieve that perfect balance to keeping on track in life.

    (Oprah.com) – To read full article click here.
    1. Walk away from bargains

    2. Make peace with imperfection
    Oprah.com : How to stop being perfect all the time

    3. Never label anything "miscellaneous"

    4. Schedule regular decluttering sessions
    Oprah.com: Peter Walsh's 3 rules for getting organized this summer

    5. Stick with what works

    6. Create a dump zone

    7. Ask for help
    Oprah.com: When to ask for help -- and how to do it

    8. Separate emotions from possessions

    9. Foresee (and avoid) problems

    10. Know where to donate

    To read the full article click here.

  • Google+ Boom

    August 2, 2011 - Leave a Comment

    As a Senior at Kennesaw State University I am always looking at the new technology especially social media.  I am always looking for ways to integrate my social media with my studies.  Whether it be adding new friends from classes, getting homework, or even just answers to general questions from classmates when professors are unavailable.  I'm proud to say that I think I have discovered the best way for me as a student to integrate my social media and university requirements.  I have been exploring and learning about Google+. It seems to have taken the best of all social media’s and combined them into one. There are two aspects of Google+ that I use the most for University. They are Google+ Hangouts and Huddles. The hangouts are used through Google+ on your computer creating video conferencing/chat rooms and the Google+ Huddles are used through the mobile app creating group texting / chat rooms.

    Google+ Hangouts make virtual video conference and chat accessible for all. Every Google+ member is able to enter the Hangout even if their computer or laptop is not equipped with video or microphones. The members of the Hangout that do not have video or microphone can still see and hear the hangout and are able to participate by typing in the chat section of the hangout. This option has changed the need for group meetings. Every student understands the difficulty of finding a time that every member of your team or group can meet. Some student’s work, some don’t, someone may have class during a time no one else does, well the Google+ Hangouts make finding that time easier. It eliminates the need for everyone to drive to a location to meet. With the Hangouts we can all jump online from home or any other location.

    The Google+ Huddles also help ease the difficulty with group meetings/projects. The user on the mobile app is able to create a group like “school project” and invite the specific users into the Huddle. Whenever a new message is created all other members get a notification to their cell phones, similar to a SMS text, keeping all members current on the conversation involving the projects.
    I currently use a zBoost to guarantee that I always have signal for my phone and computer. The zBoost makes sure that I am always connected on my DroidX and my laptop aircard to participate in the Huddles. Because of the zBoost I know I will always be able to participate and complete my work.

  • zBoost Your Data Cards!

    November 12, 2010 - Leave a Comment

    I was flipping through the channels last Saturday evening and could not find anything to watch!!  I had gone through all the movie channels and normal cable stations.  I finally settled on the idea that I would stream a movie onto my computer from Netflix.  As I was browsing through all of the categories of movies, I was reminded that I could connect my laptop to my TV to get a bigger picture.  I was pleasantly surprised by how many different movie selections were available to stream into my laptop, and I finally settled on watching District 9.

    Well I do not have the traditional internet service at my home.  I use the data card from my wireless provider.  Once I selected my movie Netflix froze while “checking link speed”.  I knew that something was wrong, and started to get a little worried.  I had never had an issue with my internet because we have a zBoost in our home.  I decided to investigate why my signal was so low.  I went into our office where I keep our YX545 SOHO.  Someone had unplugged my trusty zBoost SOHO. I plugged it back in and went to go try again.

    I went back into my living room and tried to start the movie back up.  Netflix sped through the “checking link speed” and immediately started the movie!  It was amazing!  I couldn’t tell the difference watching District 9 through Netflix online or one of my DVD’s I had at home.  I now can watch ANY movie offered through Netflix and couldn’t be happier.  Once again the zBoost has changed my life!  Not only does it help with my cell and not dropping calls, but now I can get movies ON DEMAND.  I never have to worry about nothing being on TV on those Saturday nights I want to spend at home.

  • Fantasy Football

    October 15, 2010 - Leave a Comment

    It's that time of year again, the time when the men in your life will spend countless hours sitting in front of the TV on Saturday and Sunday screaming.  That's right it's football season ladies!  If the man in your life is anything like mine then you know from September to February on the weekends he is already fully committed to the teams in his life.  Not only is he glued to the TV during these wonderful fall weekends, but I have a new bone to pick and it is will fantasy football.  If it wasn't bad enough with them glued to the TV now they are also glued to their computers checking on how the fantasy team is doing!!  It is quite amazing how large fantasy football has become!  Not only do I hear boyfriend and his friends talking about it but I have heard the newscasters for ESPN talk about their fantasy teams, but more shocking is when the local news sports anchor talks about his team! 

    Well this past weekend I thought I would try and run interference.  I unplugged the cable to the router.  That's right I stooped that low, but hey I figured if I could at least eliminate the fantasy football checking then I would get some sort of interaction with him during commercials. =)  Then it happened when he couldn't get the computer to work he pulled out his cell phone.  I thought to myself there is no way he can do this on his phone, but low and behold I found out that you can now check fantasy football scores on your cell phone browser!  I decided to question my boyfriend as to when he learned that he could access his fantasy team through his phone.  He went on to explain to me how yes he can do it through his phone but only because we had zBoost by Wi-Ex.  Since the zBoost allows us to have best possible signal in our home his phone is able to download and upload data for his fantasy team.  Without the zBoost he said it would have taken too long to download his fantasy team's page.  The zBoost saved his Sunday as he was able to make changes to his fantasy team after hearing a report about one of his players for Monday night's game had been injured.  He never has to worry about his cell phone signal being so low he cannot access his fantasy team as long as we have the zBoost.

  • zBoost your 3G wireless air cards!

    August 27, 2010 - Leave a Comment

    Hello bloggers and other humans!  My name is Jack and I am 1 ½  year old Giant Schnauzer.  I currently reside in Atlanta, Georgia with my humans.  I am SO thankful that my humans are up to date on the latest technology!  Not only have they gotten rid of the pesky landline, but they also make sure that our 3G data air card for wireless internet is running at its full potential with zBoost.

    I was at home alone the other night; my humans had left to go feed themselves at one of those restaurants that doesn’t allow dogs, so I decided to kill time by checking my Dogbook!  I went to sign on to see if I had any new friends request from my admirers (my humans’ friends) or the new special lady friends from the dog park.  Then it happened….I couldn’t find the signal ANYWHERE!!  I tried the bathroom, the bedroom and the laundry room, but I couldn’t get connected!  As everyone knows I was unable to go outside by myself because I do not have thumbs and cannot open doors.  Luckily my humans came home and tried to connect to the internet.  They went outside to research on how they can get better signal inside since there was none.  They were able to find something called a zBoost. 

    The zBoost showed up at the house by that dreaded man who puts stuff in the box at the end of the driveway, so my humans set it up!  WE HAVE SIGNAL….I was able to get onto my Dogbook and check my friends requests!!  Luckily I only had a little bit of explaining to do to the ladies back at the dog park.  They understood why it took me so long to accept their requests and that I was not ignoring them. (Sometimes it’s tough being such a ladies’ man!!)  Then my special lady friends asked me to send them information on the zBoost, because their humans ALSO had signal issues with their air cards.  I was happy to oblige and sent them a link to www.wi-ex.com.  Now that they have zBoost as well, we can all chat uninterrupted by spotty signal!!  (Sometimes I’m even talking to more than one special lady friend, but let’s keep that secret between you and me.)  So if your humans are having trouble with their signal, send them to get a zBoost!

    The zBoost gets 4 paws up from me!! (and my lady friends)

  • A Cautionary Note For Mobile App Users

    July 30, 2010 - Leave a Comment

    With the increasing demand for instant information, cell phone apps have become the instant answer providers.  Cell phone apps have even started invade schools.  I attended a seminar at my school, Kennesaw State University, on the 10 must have apps to graduate.  So now, not only can apps be used for games and social reasons, but they are also used as helpful tools for students at all levels of education.  All of this made me wonder….how safe is it to download all these apps?  Well, I came across this article in PC World which address some of my concerns.

    Android App Data Theft: Advantage Apple?

    Mobile security firm Lookout embarrassed Android by revealing that a popular wallpaper app was sending sensitive user data to a mysterious Website in China.

    The discovery, on its face, looks like an argument for Apple's restrictive phone App Store. Certainly, the store's approval process has an extra layer of security that the Android Market does not, even if it means that some desirable apps aren't allowed because Apple says so. Still, the advantage for Apple is not so clear-cut.

    First, a little background: The Android wallpaper app comes from Jackeey Wallpaper, includes popular brands such as My Little Pony and Star Wars, and was downloaded between 1.1 million and 4.6 million times, VentureBeat reports. Jackeey Wallpaper apps collected browsing history, text messages, SIM card numbers, subscriber identification, and voicemail passwords, and sent the data to www.imnet.us, a domain registered in Shenzhen, China.

    Your browser may not support display of this image. Ostensibly, an iPhone App Store reviewer would see this kind of activity in an app and disapprove, but it doesn't always work that way. Last December, Nicholas Seriot, a Swiss iPhone developer, described a proof-of-concept app that could mine contact information, GPS locations, web searches and everything you type except for passwords. Apple would normally reject an app like that, but a malicious developer could try fooling reviewers with changes at runtime, or other delayed trickery.

    Android has a different way of protecting users. When you download an Android app, it tells you what kinds of information will be accessed, so if a video game announces it will read your text messages, users can see that and determine something shady is going on. Apple, by comparison, guards the apps themselves more closely, but doesn't tell users what kind of data is accessed.

    But Android's system isn't perfect either, as shown by Lookout. Jackeey Wallpaper apps, when downloaded, only say they're collecting "phone info," which doesn't really mean anything.

    Your browser may not support display of this image. Both the iPhone and Android also face issues with third-party software, Lookout explained. Third-party code is generally used for advertising or analytics, but can access data in ways that users or even developers who implement the code don't know about. Apple recently banned the collection of iPhone data by third-parties for analytics or advertising, but that was intended more to stop groups like Flurry from spilling the beans on new Apple products.

    Lookout did commend both Android and the iPhone for keeping blatant malware out of their stores. Their message in the end was a word of caution to developers and users about the software they use. So I don't think there's a huge cause for alarm, nor do I think Apple's app security approach is indisputably safer than Android's, or vice versa.

  • zPocket Saves the Day for Wi-Ex Intern!

    July 23, 2010 - Leave a Comment

     In addition to taking classes this summer at my university, I decided to start expanding my business resume by applying for internships in marketing.   I figured I wasn’t  busy enough this summer and should add more to my plate.=)  The opportunity I have with my internship at Wi-Ex has really begun to show me the ropes of what is needed for good marketing plan.  Being a young professional, who is glued to my Smartphone for work and social purposes, I found it very cool that the product they manufacturer is a cell phone signal booster, to help improve voice and data transmission.

    As some of you may know, being an intern means there are a lot of different people to report to which means a lot of work on a lot of different projects.  I have become increasingly reliant on my cell phone this summer to stay in touch with work.  There’s always a last minute errand that I need to run, a deadline that snuck up on someone and they need help, or just your average intern tasks.  I’m lucky that I live in Atlanta which has great cell phone coverage so I can take all these calls!  However, this past weekend I was able to get a little time off, so I decided it would be a good time to go to the beach.  I headed down to the beach promising to work be available if there was an emergency.  If there was ever a time to be completely reliant on my cell phone it was this week. 

    I arrived at the beach, checked into the condo, and headed down to the pool drink in hand.  I was ready to begin rest and relaxation.  Then it happened…..my cell rang, it was the office and it was an emergency.  Our team was heading out next week and they needed research done on how our wireless signal booster can be marketed to the other company’s sales team.  As I walked into the condo I lost the call!!  As I looked at my phone I had no signal.  Luckily I was prepared because I had brought my zPocket with me.  I unpacked it from my bag, attached the base to the window, put my phone in the holder and I had signal again!!  I grabbed my Bluetooth and called back into the office to get the rest of my task.  I was able to complete and turn in my research never loosing connection to the office again.  Thank goodness for my Wi-Ex zPocket! Otherwise I wouldn’t have been able to complete my work and head back out to enjoy the rest of my vacation!!

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