Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Say Hello to Success with Thermal Barcode Labels in Ann Arbor

The Basics: Thermal Barcode Labels in Ann Arbor
Learn the basics about thermal barcodes labels and be prepared when success arrives!

What is a barcode? 
Products are assigned a unique number.  This number is translated into a scan-able code. Barcodes may be 1D, organized horizontally, or 2D, organized horizontally and vertically. 2D barcodes, being multidimensional, can hold a much higher quantity of data.

How do I print and scan barcodes?
Both types of labels will come on a roll.  To print your own - you will need a printer and barcode label design software.  Barcode labels may be printed on a laser, inkjet, or dot matrix printer, but a thermal printer is designed to produce a high-quality image for labeling needs.  1D barcodes may be scanned with a laser scanner, but a 2D barcode requires an imaging scanner.

What is a thermal barcode label? 
There are two types of thermal barcode labels, direct thermal and thermal transfer. The difference is in the type of printer and the type of label they're printed on.
  • Direct Thermal - No ink is used to produce the image.  An image is burned into a heat sensitive layer of the paper.  This type of label will fade over time (1 year) and is not recommended for use in high temperatures or when there is exposure to sunlight.
  • Thermal Transfer - A heated ribbon is used to print onto a label.  The image produced is long-lasting and durable. 
Choose to excel both at what you do and at your inventory management.  Read more!



Thursday, February 8, 2018

3 Ways to Grow Your Business with Custom Labels


Why not take advantage of the benefits that custom labels can provide for you and your staff? Custom labels are hugely helpful when you run and market a local business. They can perform functions, go places, and make connections that may not otherwise be possible. 

1. Inventory management with bar codes - How do you manage your inventory?  If you were asked how much of a specific product you have in stock, could you respond quickly, or would you need to go to your warehouse and manually count? When you make a sale, is your inventory updated immediately, or do you need to regroup each day to figure out what needs to be ordered or produced? Are you losing out on sales due to poor inventory management? Bar code labels are an important part of an inventory management system and allow you to scan your SKU numbers rather than manually entering each item number, saving you time and money.

2. Product labels – Who are you and who are you trying to reach?  Are your product labels attracting your target customers? Do you have a logo?  With the dizzying array of products and services available, you want your product to stand out.  A well-designed product label can catch the eye of and appeal to your target customers.

3. Promotional items – Where are you? Are you visible in places that your target customers frequently visit?  This can be just about anywhere! Get your business visible in more places with unique stickers, signs, and decals.

No storage space for inventory?  Our customers love our on-demand delivery for their custom label stock.  We store your inventory of blank or custom printed labels and provide what you need when you need it. Read more here!
  

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Grow your Local Business with Custom Labels


“If only there were more hours in a day!”

Your time is valuable. Why not take advantage of the benefits that custom labels can provide for you and your staff? Custom labels are hugely helpful when you run and market a local business. They can perform functions, go places, and make connections that may not otherwise be possible. 

Lights. Camera. Action! Let’s get those labels to work!

·       Manage your inventory with custom barcode labels, including thermal barcode labels.
·       Market your product with professional custom product labels and stickers.
·       Highlight your service with unique stickers, custom signs, and decals.
·       Create unique labels with round labels, water bottle labels, and wine labels.
·       Complete the sale with easy to read signage and barcode labels.

Imagine what could happen if you put labels to work and place more of your own focus on your customers?  You might just get a more professional presence and efficient operation that customers notice, buy, and refer to others.  Read more!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

"Can you believe that 6 out of every 10 seniors use the internet?"

When you hear the words “senior citizen” and “technology” what do you envision?

Someone with white hair pounding on a keyboard with a puzzled look on his or her face?

Surprisingly, senior citizens are becoming more tech savvy, especially with tablets and smart phones, sometimes more so than middle-aged people!   In fact, six out of every ten seniors use the internet.  

Aaron Smith wrote an article based on a study by Pew Internet and American Life Project.  The study identifies two main groups of seniors divided by education and socio-economic levels.  For instance, 90% of seniors with an annual household income of at least $75,000 go online.  Comparatively, only 39% of seniors who earn less than $30,000 annually go online.  When it comes to education, 87% of seniors with a college degree go online, with only 40% of seniors with a high school diploma or less are active online.

Barriers

The study found that internet use typically diminishes after age 75.  They propose a few barriers that could be the cause. 

  1. Physical limitations – poor eyesight, arthritic hands, or a chronic disease.
  2. Learning discomfort – 77% of seniors admit to needing someone to walk them through how to use new technology.
  3. Skeptical attitudes – many seniors aren’t convinced that they’re missing any information or socializing if they remain offline.  
It’s interesting that seniors aren’t as intimidated by tablets or e-readers, like a Kindle.  An estimated 27% of seniors own a tablet, an e-book reader, or both.  It may because there are very few buttons, making them less likely to make a mistake.  For anyone who has a laptop or a desktop computer, it can be frustrating when you can’t get it to work.  That’s why we offer the friendliest computer repair in Ann Arbor

Social Aspects

Many seniors admit to embracing technology to increase their communication with their children, grandchildren, or great-grandchildren.  What teenager doesn’t text these days?  More than half of Americans have a smart phone, and only 18% of them are older adults.  This statistic has risen slightly from 11% in 2011. 

Seniors are still more likely to socialize offline than younger people.  81% of seniors who use social networking sites claim they socialize with others in person or via the telephone almost every day.  Interestingly enough, the seniors who use social networking sites are much more likely to socialize off-line compared to the seniors who are not online at all.  Only 63% of off-line seniors claim to socialize with others on a regular basis. 

A Helping Hand


If you have a senior in your life, whether it’s your boss, family member, or friend, try to offer them help if they are trying a new technology.  Encourage them to learn more through lifelong learning classes offered by many community colleges.  These classes are designed to help adults and seniors get up to speed with computers, phones, tablets, and cameras.  We’re also here as a resource if you have questions about your computer or printer.  We have some of the friendliest staff in town to help you with your computer repair in Ann Arbor and the surrounding areas. 

Contact us today (734) 213-5400 – we can help you with all of your computer and printer needs!  

“Our customers have been extremely loyal to us through the years and we are extremely loyal to them. All of our employees contribute to this by doing their best with incredibly positive attitudes. Life is so precious. Thankfully, our business is not a life threatening one; however, we treat every customer's needs as if it were. We are grateful to have rewarding jobs and customers who are a pleasure to work with.”

Chris Brooks, President

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Revolutionary 3-D Printers! “Will We All Have One at Home?” Michigan Computer Supplies Weighs In!

You’ve probably seen it in Star Trek or another science-fiction movie – a piece of equipment that can reproduce or clone an object with just the touch of a button.  You may think it will be hundreds of years before we can achieve that technology.  Well, we’re here to tell you that if you haven’t yet heard of 3-D printing, prepare to have your mind blown! 

3-D printers use plastic, metal, or other materials, such as paper, to build layers upon layers to create 3-D objects.  The technology has been developing for almost thirty years and is currently exploding into many industries: medical, manufacturing, architecture, fashion, aeronautics, food, toys, and more.

It’s gaining ground in the medical field.  In fact, a news story from March 2014 lauded the efforts of Dr. Glenn Green and Scott Hollister, a biomedical engineer, both with the University of Michigan.  They teamed up to create a device that holds open an infant’s windpipe to help him breathe. The device used was 3-D printed with a polymer that is gentle on the body and dissolves within two to three years.  Scientists are using 3-D printing to build more body parts including noses, ears, blood vessels, skin, organs, and more. 

Last fall, the first 3-D printed, fully-functional, metal gun made news and caused a big stir.  Several Lawmakers proposed that the government may need to control public purchase of 3-D printers.  Highly skilled engineers designed the gun and created it with a 3-D printer typically used for manufacturing aerospace equipment and medical devices.   A similar working gun would be extremely difficult to make with a consumer grade 3-D printer

Something sweet is also coming from 3-D printers.  Manufacturers are using 3-D printers that extrude chocolate and sugar into intricately shaped candy.  Picture an edible cake topper or custom designed chocolates that resemble the guest-of-honor at your next party! 

Do you need to find a gift for that “hard to buy for” person?  Everyone loves to see themselves in photos, but how about their image on a doll or action figure?  At just $69.99 + taxes and shipping, you can upload a photo of someone and cubify.com will send you a realistic a mini figurine with their face!  In addition, cubify.com shows examples of creating jewelry, home decorations, shoes, and more.  You may not need your own 3-D printer because the service may be available soon from the company Mcor Technologies, who is teaming up with Staples to develop an in-store printing service.  Mcor Technologies uses a paper-based process to create photo-realistic colored objects.

We may not yet carry 3-D printers, but we are the place to call when you need a friendly, knowledgeable person to repair your printer in Ann Arbor, Ypsilanti, Saline, Dexter and the surrounding areas.  We’re also happy to get you a price on replacing your existing printer, computer, and peripherals.  We may be small, but we’re pretty competitive with the big box stores.  Contact us today!  Call us at 734-213-5400
and we can discuss meeting all your computer supply needs.

By the way, if you have a few extra thousand dollars to spend, you can purchase your own 3-D printer!  Watch Christopher Barnatt, the futurist, and voice of explainingthefuture.com share a breakdown of his choices for the “Top 10 Consumer Grade 3-D Printers.” 

So, with 3-D printing gaining popularity, what’s on the horizon now?  Teleporting?  It sure would make the commute to work go a lot faster!


Resources:

http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2014/03/17/289042381/doctors-use-3-d-printing-to-help-a-baby-breathe

http://techland.time.com/2013/05/23/an-airway-created-with-a-3d-printer-saved-this-babys-life/

http://spectrum.ieee.org/tech-talk/at-work/innovation/ces-2014-trends-the-3-d-printing-industry-is-poised-to-explode

http://spectrum.ieee.org/tech-talk/robotics/industrial-robots/first-3dprinted-metal-gun-shows-tech-maturity

http://www.shapeways.com/miniatures/figurines?li=category-miniatures-memorabilia


Friday, March 21, 2014

Michigan Computer Supplies Top Rated Virus Control…and it’s FREE!


Drew Bedsole, Michigan Computer Supplies’ resident expert on computer repair in Ann Arbor and beyond, offers up his view on virus control.

“First off, any kind of virus protection is better than nothing!” Drew stresses.   There are many options available to keep your computer and your personal information safer from viruses and hackers.  According to the Microsoft Security Intelligence Report, there are a reported 16 million US households that have had a serious virus problem within the past few years.  They estimate that viruses, spyware, and phishing scams cost American’s over $ 4 billion a year!  Panda Security states that 32% of the world’s computers are infected with viruses and malware. 

Drew suggests using AVG, which he has been using for about six years.  He says that in his experience AVG has caught a lot of viruses before they become a major problem.  Drew also prefers AVG because they offer a free version and it is not “bulky” (doesn’t take a lot of your computer’s memory nor slow it down).   The free AVG version is a download, and you don’t need to worry about purchasing a new license every year. 

If you want a little more security against nasty bugs and viruses, Drew recommends ESET, which Michigan Computer Supplies runs on their network server.  ESET is more robust than AVG, yet still has a small footprint.  http://www.eset.com/us/  They offer both home and business products.

If you think your computer may have picked up a bug or virus, it’s best to get help before it causes irreparable harm.  Please call us! We’re not just the best place to get your toner cartridges and printer supplies, we also offer a variety of services including the friendliest computer repair in Ann Arbor.



Check out our tips to decrease the chance of your computer picking up a bug that may cause a major problem.

We promise this link is secure!  It’s not a trick to give you a virus! 

Monday, February 17, 2014

Michigan Computer Supplies: "One of the friendliest places for computer repair Ann Arbor has to offer!"

How to make friends with your I.T. guy or gal!

Have you had to call your company’s I.T. help-line before?

Does the genius who answers the phone ever seem annoyed with you or your problem?

Computers are necessary to almost everything we do, especially at work.  When our computers are on the fritz we tend to get stressed or frustrated.  Then we take it out on the I.T. staff, or so-called “Computer Geeks.”  It’s really helpful to keep these “Geeks” on your side, because they’re generally the experts at solving problems for you!

Here are a few tips to keep in mind when communicating with I.T. staff:

  1. Try to remain calm.  If you say mean or negative things to the I.T. guy or gal, they may not be as quick to help you.
  2. Make sure your power is working.  If your computer and monitor come on, but you can’t type or move the cursor around, you may just need to replace the batteries in your wireless mouse and keyboard.
  3. Try to be specific when describing the problem.  If you say “My computer’s not working,” that doesn’t really help them know what the issue is.  A few better examples might be: “My computer won’t turn on.” “My screen goes black ten minutes after I restart.” or “It’s making an odd noise and it smells hot.” 
  4. If you receive an error message, write it down and share it with your technician.
  5. Make note of when the problem started.  Does it occur every time you open a specific program?  Try to indicate when it happens and how often.   
  6. If you’ve been having issues with your computer or printer, try to contact I.T. soon and don’t wait until you’re in a time crunch.  
  7. Remember to say “Thank You” and show your appreciation.  Many I.T. workers feel blamed for problems that are out of their control.
Did you know that Michigan Computer Supplies is one of the friendliest places for computer repair Ann Arbor has available? 

We’re so lucky to have Drew Bedsole on our team.  Drew is highly skilled at repairing computer problems and custom computer builds to meet your business needs. 

Whether you have a computer or printer issue, we can help you troubleshoot and decide the best course of action.  Don’t hesitate to call us today, because we’re the friendliest place for computer repair Ann Arbor has to offer. 
734-213-5400