6 Conventional Office Items Your Remote Employees Need

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As businesses continue to see the benefits of telecommuting, more employees are taking advantage of these policies to work from home. In fact, a Gallup poll reveals that 37 percent of workers in the United States say they have telecommuted, which is up 7 percent from just a decade ago. Even though you might have employees who work from home, they still need some of the following conventional office items to help them get their job done.

Business Cards

Image via Flickr by VFS Digital Design

From attending meetings to signing contracts, much of our business today is conducted electronically. Yet a simple business card is still a necessary item for your remote employees. If your remote workers tend to do a lot of traveling for your company, having business cards they can hand out is an excellent form of marketing. Additionally, business cards are tangible items that are always accessible and viewable. If you'd like your business cards to stay current with technology, you can always incorporate a QR code that will direct recipients to your business homepage.

Ergonomic Chair

While remote employees aren't tied to your office space, it's likely they'll still be doing most of their work from a desk at home. Before you think that just any chair will suffice for your home office worker, consider the benefits of an ergonomic office chair. These are designed specifically for shoulder and pelvis balance to keep workers comfortable when they're typing on a computer. This helps your employees actually get work done instead of using an uncomfortable dining chair and focusing on how much their back hurts, or even worse, sitting on the couch in front of the tempting television.

High-Quality Headphones

Between conferences with co-workers and meetings with clients, your remote employees will spend a lot of time conversing with others online. Unfortunately, with speakers or a poor set of headphones, a lot of these conversations can become frustrating if static and feedback constantly interrupt. Make sure your remote employees always have crystal-clear communication by investing in high-quality headphones that include a microphone.

Nice Laptop Bag

Whether your remote employees are leaving their home office because of a business trip or simply because they're going to their local coffee shop for a change of atmosphere, a high-quality laptop bag will make traveling from place to place a lot easier. Better yet, a laptop bag with pockets for documents, legal size paper, pens, and personal items will also help your remote employees stay organized when they're traveling.

Professional Voicemail

Just like traditional office employees will occasionally miss a phone call, remote employees won't always be able to answer every call they receive. Whether they're already on the line or they step away from their desk, they'll need a professional voicemail to catch the calls they miss.
Whether they have a separate phone line for their professional work or they just use their personal phones, your remote employees can use basic voicemail instructions from phone providers such as T-Mobile to set up their professional voicemail in just minutes. When your employees do this, you can feel confident knowing they're always showing a professional side even when they miss a call.

Copy of the Employee Handbook

If you don't have an electronic copy of your employee handbook available for your remote employees to use when they need it, you should provide a hard copy that they can keep at home. You should also make sure your work policies include guidelines for remote workers.

For example, your handbook should cover what expenses are reimbursable and how employees should claim them. Your policies should also cover whether your remote employees need homeowner's insurance that includes using their home as an office and who will pay for this expense. Finally, your handbook should include information about the type of equipment your remote employees will need, how it should be used, and who is responsible for purchasing this equipment.
While some remote employees have requirements that are different from office employees, they also need these conventional office items to stay organized, efficient, and comfortable.


Migrate SQL Server Database to PostgreSQL

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Both MS SQL and PostgreSQL are popular modern DBMS with powerful capabilities. They also provide high quality administration tools and programming APIs. However, everyone who compares license terms and conditions of these systems will find that Microsoft SQL is more restrictive and has higher cost of ownership than PostgreSQL. Therefore, it is not a surprise that many businesses and organizations migrate their databases to PostgreSQL server.

In order to migrate database between two DBMS the following steps must be taken:
-          table definitions must be exported from the source database as DDL statements
-          those DDL statements must be converted into the destination format and then loaded into the destination database
-          extract data from Microsoft SQL database into comma separated values (csv) format
-          convert the data into PostgreSQL format and import it into the target database
-          extract other database objects like views, stored procedures and triggers in form of SQL statements and source code

-          transform it into PostgreSQL format and load into the destination database
Let us now consider each of these steps in details. This is how to export MS SQL table definitions into DLL statements:
-          in SQL Server 2008 and earlier right-click on database in Management Studio and select pop-up menu Tasks, item Generate Scripts. Go through the wizard and make sure to select "data" checkbox which that is set to false by default
-          in SQL 2012 and later right-click on database in Management Studio and select pop-up menu Tasks, item Generate Scripts. On the "Set scripting options" tab click on Advanced, then select "data only", or "data and schema" for "Types of data to script" (in the General section)
The resulting script must be transformed according to PostgreSQL syntax before loading to the destination database.
-          remove MS SQL specific syntax patterns such as "SET ANSI_NULLS ON", "SET QUOTED_IDENTIFIER ON", "SET ANSI_PADDING ON", etc
-          replace square brackets around names by double quotes and remove them around types
-          replace default SQL Server schema "dbo" by PostgreSQL equivalent "public"
-          remove all optional keywords that are not supported by PostgreSQL such as "WITH NOCHECK", "CLUSTERED", etc
-          update types that are not supported by PostgreSQL: "INT IDENTITY(...)" by "SERIAL", "DATETIME" by "TIMESTAMP", "MONEY" by “NUMERIC(19,4)”, etc
-          replace the Microsoft SQL query terminator "GO" by PostgreSQL equivalent ";"
Now it is time to transform MS SQL data. This procedure is also handled by Microsoft SQL Management Studio: right-click on database, select pop-up menu Tasks > Export Data. Go through the wizard and specify data source "Microsoft OLE DB Provider for SQL Server" and destination "Flat File Destination". All data will be exported into the specified csv file.
This approach may not work for table containing binary data and the workaround is required. On the wizard page "Specify Table Copy or Query" select option "Write a query to specify the data to transfer". On the next page called "Provide a Source Query" write the query casting every binary column to varchar(max) as follows:
select <field 1>, …, cast(master.sys.fn_varbintohexstr(cast(<binary field > as varbinary(max))) as varchar(max)) as <new field name> from <table name>;
The output csv file may be imported into PostgreSQL table through "COPY" command:
COPY <table name> FROM <path to csv file> DELIMITER ',' CSV;
This brief guide indicates that migrating database from MS SQL to PostgreSQL is a complicated and tedious procedure that is hard to be done manually. However, database migration becomes easy and automatic with the special software solutions.

MS SQL to PostgreSQL developed by Intelligent Converters is one of such tools. It provides great performance of the conversion process and combines easy-to-use interface with wide range of capabilities:
-          all versions of Microsoft SQL and PostgreSQL are supported (including Azure, Heroku and other cloud solutions);
-          option to automate, script and schedule conversion via command line version of the product;
-          MS SQL data can be merged into existing PostgreSQL database;
-          option to export data from SQL Server database into PostgreSQL script (for those cases when direct connection to PostgreSQL server is not available);
-          support for Unicode;
-          option to convert result of SELECT-query as a regular table;
-          option to change column attributes or exclude particular columns from conversion

As every product developed by Intelligent Converters, SQL to PostgreSQL converter has free version with limited features for trial purpose. Registered version of the product comes with 1 year subscription for updates and unlimited support. 


Remote Control Bumper Cars TG637 - Bump 'n Eject Bumper Cars By ThinkGizmos

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Remote control bumper cars

Remote control toy

This number of 2 futuristic looking handy remote control bumper cars with controllers is very much fun for those family. Battle against eachother to see that's the ultimate bumper car driver!

Comes with everything required in the rest so you don't have to buy additional batteries. Just grab an isolated and get ready to rumble.

Fun Toy.

Interactive eyeball to eyeball fun. If you hit your opponent’s bumper car on it’s side it can eject his driver therefore you win! Each car is approximately 6” long.

Fun, safe (Non-Toxic Recyclable ABS Plastic), detailed bumper car game toy set for kids Aged 6 years+. This is a quality ThinkGizmos branded toy protected by international trademarks.

These remote control bumper cars are available in a well-designed box with user manual contained in the following languages (English, Spanish, German, French, Italian)

Robot Kit For Kids – Ingenious Machines Remote Control Toy Building Kit

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Construction toy

build your own robot

Buy this handheld remote control toy building kit and unleash your child’s creativity. Provides kids confidence into their achievement. This robot toy kit for youngsters contains 237 construction pieces and a handheld control. Comes with a bundle of fun!

The building set included an individual manual has easy to understand instructions with diagrams of how to create the 4 robots / machines. Kids love messing around with this construction toy all day on end (no soldering required).

Each construction toy model takes from between 35 minutes to a number exceeding 2 hours to develop, this will keep the cleverest Children occupied and focussed. After gaining experience kids might try to make their own machines.

Construction kit

After assembling each model, their creation can come to life with the included handheld control. All parts are constructed from safe, non-toxic materials: Certified for that Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) and HR4040.

This toy as awesome educational value, improving patience, concentration kit and cognitive skills. Improves kid’s minds when they are having fun, makes this of the best gifts you'll be able to give any child.


Best Home Ice Maker Machine

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Residential Ice Maker

Portable Ice Maker

Top rated residential ice maker machine
Quality steel and ABS housing means this ice maker looks stunning
Makes batches of ice cubes within 6 minutes 
26 lbs of ice per day

Select from 3 different ice cube sizes (S/M/L) through the front selection panel 
Large ice bucket holds approximately 2.2 lbs of ice
Very convenient to use, this portable ice maker machine requires no plumbing in 
Just turn on to mains and add water
This TG22 ice machine was made to last are available with a 1 year warranty with home ice maker