Environ

Celebrating Earth Day

It’s Earth Day again! Time to recommit ourselves to doing what is right for the planet and our future generations. At my household, we are working hard to grow some of our own vegetables and fruits this year. Growing some of your own food, as well as buying from local farmers, is a great way to reduce your carbon footprint, while improving the nutrition content of your diet. And besides, gardening is fun and good exercise.

We’ve got lettuce and spinach growing in an Earth Box on the deck. IMG_0243

Just finished building the gardens around the Pole Barn where we get tons of sun. We were able to have 30ft on one side and 40ft on the other. What a great use of otherwise wasted space. Sure beat digging up the lawn. Special shout out to my buddy Russell Brooks for his help getting those in.

At one end of the garden we will be putting in berries and rhubarb. At the other end, we’ll put in tomatoes, cucumbers and peppers of various sorts. Some of which we’ve started already. The weather is looking unfavorable for planting until early May.

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Finally, we added a new Purple Martin house to the property. Putting that together was…fun. Hopefully we’ll get some residents soon!

That’s what we are doing in celebration of our environment. What are you up to?

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Simplify Backup

It’s spring and time to do all those fun cleaning projects. Some of us also like to so a spring cleaning of our computer. Many times this leads us to making decisions about what files to keep and what is just not worth wasting space over.

While doing these spring cleaning duties, something we all tend to forget about is backing up our important files. Often we don’t even consider what to do until disaster strikes. Fortunately, modern operating systems like Windows or OS X come complete with simple utilities to create backups from your local machine to local storage.

But is a local backup enough? Are you even doing one? When was the last time you tested a file recovery? What happens if your backup drive fails or if you have a natural disaster at your home? Fortunately, there is an excellent solution for handling all of these situations and more.

Simplify Backup, from Tricerat Inc., is a cloud based solution. The product is powered by Mozy Pro, a Division of EMC Corp, the storage giant. The primary advantage here is that your backups are being stored in EMC’s cloud. From there, these files can be instantly recovered and downloaded back to your computer.

Setting up Simplify Backup is a breeze. There is a small app that runs on your Windows or OS X machine. It is from this app that you control what files are to be backed up and over what time frame. It is important to note that backup speeds are affected by outbound bandwidth. So, if you are tight on bandwidth, it is best to schedule your backups for off-peak hours.

Mozy OS X Client

Once the app is installed and you’ve selected your files, the app will start the backup process to the cloud. The time it takes for the first backup depends strictly on the number and size of your files as well as your upload speed. I was able to backup several gigabytes of files in one business day, on a fairly heavily used internet connection.

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A really cool feature of the product is the Mozy Client app for iOS and Android. This free app allows mobile access to all of your backed up files. Right from this app you can see the files that have been archived and you can read documents, look at pictures, play videos, etc. It’s like taking your hard drive with you on your phone. Very convenient.

Here’s a short video of the Simplify Backup mobile client operating on an iPhone 6 Plus:

Looking for a simple to use,  yet very powerful and inexpensive way to protect your files? Try Simplify Backup from Tricerat Inc. You’ll feel better! Really, you will!