Browsing Posts published by Bob

Our last regular Lunchinar talked about Windows 10 and how to prepare for it.  If you’re waxing nostalgic, here’s the online version:


The Quartet

Joseph J Ellis

In 1776 we signed the Declaration of Independence.  Then we won the Revolutionary War.  Then we became a Democracy.  Then the Civil War happened.

To a large degree I confess to being mostly ignorant of what happened immediately following the Revolutionary War.  Like most folks, I bought into the Founding Fathers worked together and figured out how to create this new Democratic Republic pretty seamlessly.

Boy, was I wrong.  This is actually one of the better history books I’ve ready in a while.  I illustrates the disconnect between the ineffective national government (which was truly more of a Confederacy of States than a Federal Government) and the all-powerful State governments.

For those of you who think the Founding Fathers could do no wrong and had singular goals and objectives in mind, read this book.  You’ll also realize that much of the mindset was based on compromise (especially dealing with Federal versus State powers).  And that much happened not because it was what all parties wanted, but what was politically doable.

The book focuses primarily on what the author sees as the four men most responsible for the creation of the constitution.  George Washington, John Jay, Alexander Hamilton and James Madison take up a good share of the narrative.  But there’s a decent amount of attention spent on the political issues of the day as well.

A great read.

Simplex-IT welcomes Microsoft (with Windows 10), the City of Hudson (with more fiber!) and the Malted Meeple (now with more…um…Meeple).

Ok, hopefully you’ve heard about our 8th annual picnic this month (Wednesday August 19th from 4:30-8pm).

(click here to RSVP)

And you know that we always put out some good food, play some strange games and show off some new technology.

This year we’re taking it a step further.  This year you can talk with:

Folks from the Microsoft Store in Beachwood will be joining us with a number of Windows devices (can you say xBox?) to show how the stuff all connects together.  Not dog and pony show, but you’ll get a chance to play with it yourself.

We’ll also be joined by the City of Hudson (not the whole city, not enough room) who will be on hand to talk about the new high-speed fiber initiative (which Simplex-IT has a role, no surprise I’m sure).  If you’re a business owner in Hudson (especially downtown) you’ll want this informal chance to ask questions.

Finally we’re outsourcing our games.  Our neighbors from down the street (The Malted Meeple) will be on hand with some quick games for those so inclined.

Let me stress:

  • No sales pitches
  • No strong arm tactics
  • You don’t have to play if you don’t want to
  • We won’t kick you out if you have an Apple tattoo.

We usually have about 60 or so people attending.  With the additional activities, here’s hoping we attract a lot more!

Invite your family, friends, co-workers, neighbors, kids and that one guy who works down the hall from you.  He’s bored.

Of course this is free, like everything else we do here at Simplex-IT.

Fiber comes to the City of Hudson, courtesy of…The City of Hudson!

The City of Hudson (home of Simplex-IT) last month announced plans to implement fiber-based high-speed internet connectivity, starting with the downtown area (yes, for those who have not wandered through our fair city we do have a very nice downtown).

Fiber is not only good for your diet and digestion, but also leads to extremely fast internet speeds.  And the price is usually pretty good.

Of course this won’t be implemented overnight, but soon.  As in you’ll have fingers let over if you count down the months on your hands soon.  And it will be phased in (which makes sense) based on geographical areas.

So does Simplex-IT play a part in this?  What do you think?

Join Simplex-IT and some folks from City Hall at our picnic this month.  We’ll be happy to answer questions about the fiber initiative.

If you want to see the announcement, check out this video:


“The Post-American World Release 2.0” by Fareed Zakaria

I confess…I like Fareed Zakaria.  He’s a host over at CNN, and he’s a columnist for both Time and the Washington Post.  Yup, he’s got an agenda, but for the most part I like his reasoning and his ability to see the interplay of trends and processes.

The original Post American World was written in 2008.  It was updated in 2011 to include some thoughts about the wonderful financial call-it-what-you-will that happened soon after.

It’s an interesting premise.  The 21st century is going to see a lot of changes.  Not all of them are doom and gloom.  But the positioning of the United States is going to be significantly different at the end of the century versus the beginning.  “Developing” countries such as Brazil, India, Russia and China are hardly worthy of the term “developing” any more.  And the relative importance of the US in terms of economic dominance is going to change.  Not because of trouble in the US, but because of prosperity elsewhere.

On the surface, that actually sounds pretty cool.  The free market system is…wait for it…working!  For the most part that brings stability, opportunity and relative peace.  It’s not perfect by a long shot.

But that means that the relative differences in terms of economic, social and political prominence between the US and these other prosperous countries will have to adjust.  We’re going to have to get used to not being the be-all and end-all in terms of the world.

Fareed lays the discussion out with what I think is a thoughtful discourse.  It’s actually a pretty easy read, and although it includes a lot of facts and statistics, the narrative is pretty smooth.

The one complaint is I do think he’s not considering the impact that technology will have in the next 2-3 decades.  The increase in job displacement I think will be significant, and have an impact worldwide.  But you don’t hear a lot of folks talking about that directly.

I recommend this book highly if you’re interested in a great perspective of where this world is heading.

Our 8th Annual Picnic (now with Microsoft and…Meeples?)

Simplex-IT started in August 2007.  In 2008 we celebrated our new offices with a picnic.  And we haven’t looked back (except to see who’s been following us).

We just like to get together with folks and have a good relaxing time.  We usually have some technology out to play with, a couple of games…that sort of thing.  No big deal.

And we’re going to do this again…except different.  We’re bringing in some friends to help us celebrate.

RSVP by clicking here

First of all, Microsoft.  Some folks from the Microsoft Store up in Beachwood are going to bring some toys so we can show off “The Windows Experience.”  It’s hard to realize just the level of integration Microsoft is bringing with Windows 10 (including non-Microsoft devices) without seeing them together.

“Sooooo….is this going to be a Microsoft love-fest, where all is wonderful, and all that?” I hear you cry.

C’mon, you know us better than that.  We only talk the reality of stuff.

So maybe you don’t want to talk tech.  Ok, then.  Games.  Our new friends over at The Malted Meeple (just down the street from us) will be joining us and bringing some interesting games for the willing to try out.  As in board games.  Without consoles, joysticks, wifi or electricity.

Simplex-IT picnic 2013

Simplex-IT’s 6th Annual Community Appreciation Picnic

Don’t want to do that?  Cool.  Just relax, have some burgers and/or brats, and have a good time.

Join us Wednesday, August 19th from 4:30-8pm

RSVP by clicking here

Windows 10.  Let the hoopla begin.  July 29th is the release date.  Obviously Microsoft was looking for just the right way to celebrate “National Lasagna Day.”

And the upgrade will be free!  Well, free to a lot of people.  Windows 7, 8.1?  Yup.  Well, except for Enterprise users.  Unless you have Software Assurance.

And of course you need to Reserve your upgrade.

Does that include Windows Phone?  Well, of course.  If the phone OEM isn’t blocking it.  And depending on your carrier.

Are you the IT guy for your company?  It’d be kind of funny if you came in the next day to a lot of workstations upgrading to Windows 10.  Well, funny to us, anyway.

Join us for the last regularly scheduled Lunchinar for Simplex-IT.  Help us say goodbye to an era of bad jokes, ok pizza, decent giveaways and bad PowerPoint slides.

We’re not going to talk about Windows 10 (we’ve already had 2 lunchinars on that).  We’re going to talk about the process of getting Windows 10.

  • When:  Wednesday, July 15th
  • Time:  11:30-1pm (Eastern)
  • Where:  Courtyard by Marriott in Stow (or online)

Click here for more information and to RSVP


We first started the monthly Lunchinar concept back in January of 2009.  A simple idea, we’d just invite people to the Simplex-IT office, get some pizza, share some ideas about what’s going on in IT.  No sales pitch, nothing fancy.

Within the first six months, we outgrew the office, and found a great home the Hattie Larlham’s Café in Hudson.

We’ve shown Windows 7, Windows 8, 8.1 and 10.  All months before their release.  Google Glass, cloud servers, various versions of Office.  Business Continuity, Social Media for small to medium businesses.

3 years ago we started the “Geek Raffle” which raised funds for Hattie Larlham in December.

Then we started videotaping the event, and editing them for posting on YouTube.  John Harrow took care of that.

Fast forward to 2015.  We’ve added several webinars each month.  Although we’ve continued the lunchinars, the attendance has lowered to about the same as our webinars.

But the cost in terms of time and money is significantly higher for the Lunchinar.

So I’ve made the decision to put an end to the Lunchinar.


July’s Lunchinar will be the last of the regularly scheduled Lunchinar.  But we’ll have some additional events on the 3rd Wednesday of each month moving forward.

August will be our annual picnic (that ain’t going away).

September will be an online event (more details to follow).

October will be Simplex-IT’s first field trip (yup, I kid you not).

November will be an online event (more details to follow)

December will still be our Geek raffle (although some details might change from prior years).

January will be our annual “IT Trends for 2016.”

Each week the Cleveland Plain Dealer selects a person and promotes their business and career.

On Sunday they hit a new low and selected me.

Click here to read their folly.

MicrosoftDeals on various Microsoft products expire on June 30th!

Microsoft’s fiscal year ends on June 30th.  Because of this, Microsoft always has promotions and deals for their licensing that expires on June 30th.  This year is no exception.

Offers on:

  • Office 365
  • Project Online
  • Microsoft Azure
  • Microsoft Licensing
  • Migration Costs
  • Open Value Subscription
  • Software Assurance

These offers differ from product line to product line, but they usually end up somewhere between 10-30% off what you would pay throughout the rest of the year.  And many of these offers are limited to only if you purchase the product through a Microsoft Partner (that would be someone like us).

Also, Microsoft has quietly announced that some products will actually see a price increase after June 30th.

So…act now, save money.  Wait until after, price increase.


Click us at, or call us at 234.380.1277.  And you know we don’t do the whole high-pressure approach.  We’ll help you determine the product and licensing plan that’s best for you and your organization (even if it’s not with us).