Top 10 Reasons Yahoo Employees Can No Longer Work From Home


Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer is putting an end to Yahoo employees working from home as part of her heroic effort to turn around the struggling company.  As best we can tell, here are the top 10 reasons why employees can no longer work from home.

10:  Sitting in Bay Area traffic for hours each day is more productive than working at home

9:  Forcing employees to pay more for gas, commuter rail, and child care will help the economy

8:  Employees that struggle to balance work and family are happier, more productive, and fiercely loyal to their employer

7: Employees that come to the office get cool benefits like free gourmet food, laundry service, exercise classes, and massages.  Oh, wait, that’s Google

6:  Marissa Mayer has always wanted to appear in a Dilbert cartoon

5:  Talent and results are meaningless unless you work in a cubicle

4:  The Internet is a fad and should not be used for business

3: Sharing documents with real-time collaborative editing and managed revisions, instantly  messaging teammates, and working together are all less productive than waiting for an available conference room

2:  Interactive meetings using Hangouts, with multi-party voice and video conferencing, desktop sharing, and real-time collaboration is just science fiction

And the Number One reason Yahoo employees can no longer work from home ….

Without Google Apps For Business, we cannot Work in the Future


Cumulus Global Partners with 4th Bin for e-Waste Services

4th_bin_logoCumulus Global announced today a strategic alliance with The 4th Bin for Responsible e-Waste services.  Through the alliance, Cumulus Global will offer e-Steward certified recycling services to customers in and around New York, along with secure data storage destruction services to customer nation-wide.  In addition to e-Steward Certification, the 4th Bin has attained ISO 14001 and R2 Certification, reinforcing the company’s commitment to responsible recycling and customer solutions.

“As we move companies into cloud-based solutions, they are reducing their on-premise technology footprints,” noted Allen Falcon, CEO of Cumulus Global.  “By offering a means for customers to recycle equipment and destroy sensitive data, we can help customers avoid near- and long-term liability issues.”

For businesses in New York City, The 4th Bin provides convenient pickup services.  The 4th Bin collects all types of electronics, including computers, printers, phone systems, storage arrays … anything that has a battery or plugs in.  Cumulus Global and The 4th Bin will processes data storage media for secure, verified destruction from anywhere in the continental United States.

About The 4th Bin

The 4th Bin is a leading provider of ethical electronic waste rescue and recycling solutions, serving both residences and commercial businesses with door-to-door pick-up of all electronics. With a commitment to the highest ethical standards in respect to e-waste recycling, The 4th Bin has created a simple and inexpensive way for consumers and companies to recycle or reuse their electronics, while working together to manage the NYC e-waste problem. By also delivering secure, on-site data destruction services and IT asset management and disposition, The 4th Bin is your complete e-waste partner.



Who Will Use the Chromebook Pixel? Maybe You!

Chromebook PixelLast week, Google announced the Chromebook Pixel, a high end laptop running Chrome OS and designed for users that work in the cloud.  The unit is HD audio and video, a dual-core Celeron i5 processor, and up to 32 GB of solid state storage.  The 12.86″ touchscreen has an unusual, but very useful, 3:2 aspect ratio, which beats Apple’s Retina displays in terms of pixel density.

At $1,299 for a WiFi model and $1,499 for the LTE version, some in the tech press  question who would buy the Pixel.  Others, like us, see the value proposition.

We see the LTE model as extremely useful, particularly given the 1TB of free Google Drive space you get for 3 years with the system.   Why?  The aggregation of features make this device a perfect replacement for professionals and other knowledge workers that live and work via the web — in the cloud.


According to Ookla, my 4G LTE smartphone gets 30 Mbps on download and 18 Mbps on the upload.  That’s almost identical to the 35 Mbps symmetric FIOS line that serves an office of eight web-heavy users.  The Pixel LTE gives you high-speed, ubiquitous access to the Internet so you can work in the cloud without working about hot spots and performance.


With QuickOffice installed, you can bring in, access, and edit your legacy MS Office applications without blinking an eye.  The “hurdle” of moving away from MS Office just dropped to the ground.


The LTE model has 64 GB of local storage — plenty of capacity for working off-line when cellular service is blocked and WiFi is not available (planes, trains, etc).  And, unless you are streaming videos or playing on-line games, the battery should give you about 5 hours of useful work (enough to cross the country).


With 1TB of Google Drive storage per device/user, the Chromebook Pixel provides enough storage for most small and mid-size businesses.  And, with Google Apps as its base, you can integrate your business applications and tools to ensure your data is protected and secure.

If you still need access to Windows-only legacy apps, we can provide you a virtual desktop that runs in a Chrome tab.

If you …

  • Work in the cloud
  • Leverage the capabilities of Google Apps
  • Use web-based and cloud applications to run your business

… the Chromebook Pixel may be right for you.


Cloud Solutions Drive Rapid Growth for Cumulus Global

Cumulus Global today announced revenue growth exceeding 300% for 2012 as the company’s cloud solutions business continues to expand. Sales for 2012 surpassed $3.3 million dollars compared to $972,000 in 2011. Net income before taxes jumped over 400%, to more than $200,000 for 2012. This growth reflects increasing demand from Cumulus Global’s core small and mid-size business markets, as well as the company’s expansion into new market segments.

“In the last 18 months, we have helped more than 120 school districts migrate to Google Apps for Education, deploy Chromebooks for Education, and protect their networks and in-house data,” noted Allen Falcon, CEO and co-founder. “We see increasing opportunity in the educational market.”

The company also sees increasing demand from local, municipal, and county governments and agencies throughout New England and nationally. Falcon expects revenues from Google Apps for Government and related services to “more than triple over the next twelve to eighteen months.” Falcon attributes this growth to the migration, education, and support services offered, including the company’s participation in the FCC E-Rate program for schools and libraries.

Serving the needs of small and mid-size businesses, those with 1 to 1000 employees, remains a core market for Cumulus Global. According to Falcon, “Our core SMB market grew by more than 30% last year and we see that rate of growth accelerating.” Falcon attributes this growth to the company’s focus on solutions rather than technology.

“We do not sell hype or technology,” stated Falcon. “We work with our customers to identify if and how cloud solutions can improve efficiency, expand services, drive revenue, and lower costs. We bundle products and services that overcome challenges and enable growth.” Partnering with more than a dozen ISVs and solution providers, Cumulus Global can meet customers’ regulatory compliance, security, data management, and IT administration needs.

For companies, non-profits, government agencies, and schools interested in learning more, Cumulus Global conducts regular webcasts and Q&A sessions.


Helpful Hint: Modern Preview in Google Drive


In the beginning, seeing a preview of documents in Google Drive meant clicking an link and waiting for a new browser window or browser tab to open up.  Your preview would appear, if the file type was compatible, surrounded by all the menu bars and trappings of a Google Doc screen.

All that is changing.Google Drive Preview

Google is rolling out a new preview for files in Google Drive, starting now.

Google Drive will let you quickly preview more than 30 file types and quickly flip between files until you find the one you want.  You’ll see the new preview automatically if you open a photo, video, or PDF. To see a preview of a Google document, right-click on the file name and select “preview.”

Once the preview window is open, you can …

  • Click on the arrows on either side to flip to other files.
  • Watch video files or scroll through multi-page documents.
  • Select and copy text from the preview — even for a PDF or Microsoft Word document
  • Use the zoom buttons to see a file in more detail.

Each file preview also gives you one-click access to share, download, print or open a file for editing. 

Data Loss and Recovery Are Still a Growing Concern


With all of the industry focus on data loss and disaster recovery, you may be surprised at the state of affairs.

  • 53% of businesses experienced data loss within the past 12 months; up from 31% in the prior year (EVault 2012 Survey)
    • 24% of IT Managers admit to not telling their CIOs that some data is not backed up, including data on mobile devices
    • 38% of IT managers worry about the security and effectiveness of their backup solutions
  • 58% of downtime and data loss was caused by storage problems or failures (Continuity Risk Benchmark)
  • 86% of companies experienced unplanned downtime last year (Acronis Disaster Recovery Index Survey)
  • 60% of companies identify human error as the most common cause of downtime and data loss (Acronis Disaster Recovery Index Survey)

What does this mean?

Whether  running systems in-house or in the cloud, businesses MUST understand the risks to their data and system, and have reasonable protections and responses in place.  Solutions that focus on addressing hardware and software errors may not protect you from user mistakes and missteps.

False Sense of Security in the Cloud

When moving to the cloud, businesses must remember that while good cloud infrastructures provide protection from hardware/software type failures, your data is still susceptible to user error.  Backup/recovery services offer protection for cloud-based data that rivals services available for in-house solutions.

Want More Info?

Please contact us if you would like to discuss your needs and available options.


Creative Solutions Help Schools Deploy Chromebooks and Google Apps

Schools looking to engage students and deploy one-to-one technology programs face many challenges, including limited budgets, annual budget cycles, and the need to select technologies and services that integrate with curriculum goals and objectives. To overcome these challenges, schools are turning to creative funding solutions like those offered by Cumulus Global through its strategic partnership with First American Education Finance. By offering deferred initial payments, flexible payment schedules, short term rentals, and lease rates as low as 0%, the newly announced alliance offers schools more ways to fit Chromebooks, Google Apps for Education deployments, and related services into their curriculum and their budgets.

“Chromebooks make a great choice for student computing as they enable web-based learning and enhance student-teacher interaction,” notes Allen Falcon, CEO of Cumulus Global. “Chromebooks also work well for schools as they cost half to a third of laptops and tablets, and as much as 80% less for administration, management, and support.”

Adding value beyond traditional financing services, First American Education Finance provides a web-based asset management system that reduces a school’s cost of tracking and managing devices, device assignments, and refresh cycles. Cumulus Global and First American Education Finance will also help schools dispose of older technology, applying funds to new purchases and lease payments.

“We are uniquely positioned to help schools acquire and deploy Chromebooks while saving them time, effort, and money,” added Falcon. “Schools can obtain equipment now, and pay for it as their budget cycle allows.”

Chad Wiedenhofer of First American Education Finance echoed Falcon’s statements. “As a finance company committed to the education community, we are excited to make Chromebooks more easily available to Cumulus Global customers. We are committed to developing innovative finance solutions that help schools to acquire leading classroom technology.”

Schools interested in Chromebooks for Education and financing options can contact Cumulus Global for more information at

About First American Education Finance
First American Education Finance is dedicated to bettering your student’s lives by providing your school with the resources to succeed. First American provides competitive leasing, financing and asset management solutions that help schools budget and manage new technologies. First American is a City National Bank Company.

About Cumulus Global
Cumulus Global ( is Cloud Solutions Provider and a Google Apps Premier SMB Reseller helping small and mid-size businesses, non-profits, governments, and educational institutions move from in-house systems to cloud computing solutions. We align technology with our clients’ goals, objectives, and bottom lines. In addition to Google Apps, Cumulus Global offers a range of cloud-based security, storage, and server solutions.

On-Premise IT: The Bad, The Good, and the Ugly

We do not hate or dislike Microsoft.  But, looking at the company and its products, Microsoft often provides us great examples for some of the issues with in-house systems for small and mid-size enterprises.

Case in Point: According to ComputerWorld, Microsoft will issue 12 security updates for 57 vulnerabilities across Windows, Office, and Exchange.  In an extremely unusual move, 2 of the updates are for Internet Explorer (IE) from version IE6 through IE10.

The Bad:  The scope and severity of these updates are the largest since April, 2011:

  • 5 of the updates are “critical”, the rest are “important”.
  • The vulnerabilities addressed are in every version of Windows from XP Service Pack 3 and Vista through Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows RT.
  • Updates are needed for all current versions of MS Office and for MS Exchange.

The Good:  Microsoft is able to fix the vulnerabilities found, even though some of their products continue to fail security tests.

The Ugly:  While these updates make on-premise IT environments more secure, they come at a huge cost, particularly small and mid-size businesses.  Applying these updates means touching every server, workstation, terminal server, and Windows RT tablet — some more than once.   While larger companies may use images to update workstations, applying these updates still requires building and testing the image before distribution. Hours of work and multiple reboots mean time and money — even if the work is done after hours.

Perspective:  One of the major drawbacks of on-premise IT solutions for small and mid-size enterprises is exactly this kind of maintenance.  For hosted and cloud solutions designed for large-scale multi-tenancy, like Google Apps and others, pushing out updates is automated, fast, reliable.  And, these updates rarely if ever require local updates.

Moving to a cloud or hybrid computing environment can save you time, money, and aggravation, while providing a more secure, more reliable system.

Interested in learning more, read what companies that have moved to the cloud and Google Apps have to say in this white paper.

Cloud Security Focus Shifts to Data Protection

This blog post is the first in a series on Data Protection issues and practical solutions.

When companies began moving to cloud computing solution, a great deal of time and anxiety was spent on security.  For most considering the move, the questions were basic: Will my vendor access my data?  Will my vendor prevent unauthorized access to my data? How secure is my connection to my data? With the maturing of security standards (SSAE-16, ISO 27001, FISMA, and others), these fundamental questions are less of a concern to most businesses.  Top tier providers not only create secure infrastructures, but build commitments to customer data security and integrity into their contracts, Terms of Service, and Service Level Agreements, or SLAs. That said, security in the cloud requires thought and planning.  In addition to basic access concerns, organizations need to be as vigilant with cloud-based data as they are with in-house data when it comes to data integrity, exposure, and loss prevention.  Holistically, the focus should be “Data Protection”. As we look at Data Protection in this blog series, we will focus on the areas of greatest risk to your data:

  • User Identity and Account Security
  • User Actions — accidental and malicious
  • Data Leaks /Permission Errors
  • Mal-ware
  • Rogue Applications

For each of these issues, we will look at how the risks change (or not) when data is in a public cloud service, as well as practical solutions for mitigating the risks.