Tuesday, September 1, 2015

New Article w Tips for Supporting Better

Just released to the publisher! Geek Speak!

Monday, August 10, 2015

New Article: On Making Difficult Decisions

Sometimes we’re faced with having to make a difficult decision, where every option has a significant downside. How should we process those? And how do we handle the aftermath?

I wrote a brief article that may be helpful! Click here to read a free advance copy!

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

New Article: Disaster Recovery & Business Continuity

Most in IT recognize the importance of data backups, but there’s more to a good disaster recovery and business continuity strategy than having backups. What are those additional elements, and how do you set an appropriate budget to accomplish them?

I just released an article to the publisher on this important-- make that essential topic. You can read a free advance copy by clicking here!

Monday, June 29, 2015

New Article: Freedom!

Have you noticed that many in church IT are frustrated because they don't feel their leadership's support? I just released an article for publication that addresses this. If you'd like to read a free advance copy, click here!

Monday, June 8, 2015

New Article: OS Version Update: Windows, OSX, Android, & iOS

I just released an article to the publisher about these operating systems. I include a brief introduction to our thinking about Windows 10 too! If you'd like to read a free pre-release version on MBS' website, click here!

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

New Article: A Surprising Discussion on Email to Staff in their Off-Hours

I just released this new article to the publisher; here's the opening:
Ministry staff is mobile, and most on the team feel called to their role. It makes sense, then, to make ministry email available to staff on their mobile devices so they can access it when not at work, right? Well, surprisingly, not always!
This will impact almost every ministry, and it's needed information! Here's a link to the free copy we posted on our website:  http://www.mbsinc.com/email-to-staff-in-their-off-hours/ .

Thursday, March 19, 2015

iOS Hotspot Issue Could Cost You!

We noticed in the last few months extra charges on our cellular bills-- more than $200!-- for excessive data usage. In looking into the cause, we found that it was because we had apparently overused our data plan by leaving our iPhone Personal Hotspots on. Or so we thought.

The first time it happened we paid the bill and said, "Shame on us. Everybody remember to turn your Personal Hotspot off when it's not needed." Then it happened again. To me! And I've been very intentional about only turning that feature on when I need it, and turning it off when I don't.

Here's what I've learned: if you have devices that have the same AppleID as your iPhone, they can turn the Personal Hotspot on without you even knowing it! This is true for iPads, Macs, and more!

Imagine the scenario:
You're walking through a park where there's no public WiFi. Your iPhone is in your pocket, and you're carrying your WiFi-only iPad. Because the iPad can't find a WiFi to connect to, it automatically tries to connect to your iPhone, turning on the Personal Hotspot without you even knowing it! And it does not turn off the hotspot when it's done. And that's where the potential data overuse fees can kick in.
Talking with Apple engineering, these are currently the only ways to prevent that from happening; do one of the following:
  1. Turn off Bluetooth on your devices (other than the iPhone) and WiFi on your Macs, or
  2. Sign out of iCloud on your devices and Macs, or
  3. Have your devices and Macs forget the network password for your iPhone hotspot.
The problems with those are, respectively:
  1.  If you use Bluetooth on your devices (like your iPad), you will need to manually turn it on to do so and then must remember to turn it off when done. But what if you forget to turn off your iPad's Bluetooth?
  2. If your devices get lost or stolen you won't be able to use 'Find My Device'.
  3. If you use a strong password for your hotspot, remembering and entering the password is cumbersome at best.
What Apple agreed was that the best solution would be to add a control to iPhone iOS where the default setting would be to not allow other devices to automatically turn on the hotspot, but allow the user to change that if desired. If the user changes that setting, the liability for cost would be on the consumer.

What started out as a great idea by Apple needs just a little tweaking-- hopefully soon-- to make it truly good. If I were an attorney and discovered this issue, I would be seeing dollar signs and think class action lawsuit, which only the attorneys really benefit from.