Posts filed under ‘technology’

Top 5 Reasons the Used Technology Industry is Evolving

car salesBuying used products often comes with a negative connotation.  For example, used car sales  are often seen as a ‘shady’ way of purchasing a reliable vehicle. Horror stories of rip-offs, unanswered calls and pressure cooker sales techniques are abound in the used product industry.

The public outlook on used products is currently in a state of flux though.  Buying used is fast becoming a valid alternative to expensive new purchases during these trim economic times.  Not only are used products a cost-saving alternative, they also are more reliable than ever as online resellers establish customer friendly reputations.  I’d like to take this opportunity to expound on the ‘Top 5’ changing reasons to utilize a used product reseller, specifically in the information technology sector.

1.  Cost

Companies across the board need to save every extra dime nowadays.  Many businesses are trimming their overhead by cutting jobs and concentrating on core  services.  Another way companies can drastically reduce their costs is by purchasing used network hardware for their IT infrastructure. Buying a used router, switch or server can often mean the difference in thousands of dollars.

2.  Rising Quality

The days of shady resellers are over.  Many current online technology resellers are gaining great reputations for good return policies, great customer service and incredible prices.   Resellers also have larger product inventories than ever before, matching many straight-from-the-source stores in both quantity and quality.

Resellers understand that there is a large existing consumer market that wants both affordability and quality.  This combo of traits used to be unheard of.  However, cutting edge processing techniques now allow resellers to provide top notch products at great prices.

3.  Eco-Friendly

Buying used saves our environment. The constant need to upgrade to the newest and best technology has been putting a strain on our environment as old equipment is constantly trashed.

The re-use of technology equipment prevents the unnecessary and costly disposal of used hardware, which often ends up in our country’s landfills.  The ‘green’ way of doing things involves recycling used hardware and re-using it in an efficient and responsible manner.

4.  Evolving Market

The advent of the internet has given the resale market the tools to collaborate, organize and become ‘official.’  Various collective organizations, such as Uneda, for the used network hardware industry, provide oversight, ensure the highest in product quality, and prevent instances of counterfeit and fraud.

These alliances create a safe and efficient environment for used hardware customers to make a purchase.  They are helping eradicate the dark days of resale, wrought with ‘used car salesman’ horror stories.

5.  Customer Service

Several years ago,  online stores in general were renowned for their horrible customer service, perhaps only overshadowed by the telecom companies.  The recent popularity and security imbued to online purchases have created a rising need for good customer service.

Many online technology resellers now provide top notch customer help: utilizing expert engineers and Q/A technicians to work out every customer’s needs.  Whether a customer wants to chat online, email or phone in, a new age of ‘getting it worked out’ is upon us.

August 27, 2009 at 5:43 pm Leave a comment

The Word As We Knew It

darwin chatOver time, the definitions of words have evolved and adapted to their environments.  Much as Darwin’s theory of evolution postulates a survival of the fittest for species within a given environment, language also seems to have its own breed of natural selection.

Certain words and meanings become extinct- in modern day America the ‘rad’ and ‘righteous’ slang of the 1960s has all but died off. Other words evolve and continue to take on new meanings as they are placed under different societal pressures.  For example, the word ‘computer’ in the 17th century referred to a person who performs mathematical calculations.  Today, ‘computer’ has clearly evolved into a word with a completely different set of meanings and connotations.  Circuits, bits, robots, mechanics, PCs, networks and the internet are all associations that easily come to our minds, but would baffle any 17th century citizen.

The internet and its unique ability to rapidly share information across the planet has created a sort of ‘hot-bed’ for the evolution of language.  New phrases, words, acronyms and slangs have been given the ability to virally evolve and disseminate to new populations within a matter of days.  Definitions are born, morph, and die based on the evolving collective consciousness of humanity.

Take the slang word ‘Photoshopped.’  This word has evolved based on the popularity of the Adobe photo-editing application, Photoshop.  When it first emerged as a new word, it was simply taken to be the utilization of a specific software solution to modify or edit a photo.  It then evolved to encompass a new set of societal conditions.   Print magazine models were said to be ‘Photoshopped’ due to the high occurrence of airbrushing and re-touching work that went into their shots.   More recently, ‘Photoshopped’ can even refer to something non-digital that is unlikely to be true or may be an illusion.

Another word that has undertaken similar stages of mutation is ‘router.’  The original definition was a person who routed items from one location to another- a sort of latter-day postal service employee.  Technological innovation once again selected for the dominant meaning when Standford’s William Yeager designed the first router to distribute packets of information across a network of computers.   As consumer and enterprise networking-use exploded over the next 3 decades, the definition of the router once again evolved.

No longer is a router simply a piece of network hardware that routes packets of information from one location to another.  Today, a ‘router’ encompasses a slew of different pieces of network equipment, from VPNs and Firewalls to Blade Servers.  Solutions such as Cisco’s Integrated Service Router are melding multiple functions into all-in-one solutions in order to make networking more seamless.  We once used router to refer to a singular device, wheras we now may be referring to a number of devices daisy-chained together.

Technology’s impact on the evolution of language cannot be understated.   The internet is not only a pressure cooker for the new meanings of old words, but also a breeding ground for new sorts of language all together.  Although considered primarily the ammunition of text-messaging teenagers, abbreviations (lol, rotfl, wtf, brb, gtg, etc.) are becoming more than meets the eye.  ‘LOL’ possesses a completely different meaning than the words ‘Laugh out Loud’ written fully.   In fact, ‘Laugh out Loud’ written in full could either be interpreted as sarcasm or the product of an out-of-fashion text message.

This exponential burst in language evolution due to technological progress poses several interesting questions.  Will the internet’s ability to disperse and disseminate meaning eventually create more language sub-sets?  Will it work  as a sort of ‘meme drift’ that isolates specific groups to only communicate with one another?  Or will the internet’s access to information act as a ‘Rosetta Stone,’ and create a larger set of universal words that can be spoken across various cultures?

Citations:

Network World, ‘What is a Router?’:  http://www.networkworld.com/news/2009/061709-what-is-a-router.html

Princenton Wordnet:   wordnet.princeton.edu/perl/webwn

Wikipedia, ‘William Yeager’: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Yeager

June 17, 2009 at 10:46 pm 2 comments


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