Tips to Save Money on Laptop Rental

Many businesses round the world, both small and large, rent laptops for special occasions, business travel, seminars or conferences. Laptop rental can serve as a great money saving option especially for the smaller businesses that just can not afford to stock their offices with laptops. Moreover, Laptop rental also helps in cutting down the overhead costs including updating and maintenance charges.

However, when it comes to renting laptops for an event or the office, several factors need to be taken into strong consideration to be able to make the most out of the deal. Focus on money saving alternatives like free set up, lower shipping costs and flexible lease policies. Some expenses may appear to be more than what you are planning to invest initially, but in most cases they are going to help you save a big bag of money later in the long run. Here are a few effective tips that should hopefully help you to understand the basics of Laptop Rental better:

Research various options, applications and expenses: Laptops can be rented both for private purposes and for temporary events or offices. Rental policies vary from place to place and there before it's extremely vital that you do some basic research to get a fair impression of what's being offered. Some companies rent laptops directly whereas a few others serve as convention centers acting as a third party mediator between rental companies and the clients. In case you are renting laptops for official purposes, try to find the companies that provide total installation and maintenance at minimum or no extra price.

Beware of hidden charges: With the number of laptop rental companies rising steeply with time, some agencies are claiming to be renting laptops at amazing discounts. However, from business point of view, it is pretty obvious that they would keep a profit percentage for themselves. Before, before renting, try to make sure you are fully aware of the total rental expenses including handling and the shipping charges. Most of the reputed laptop rental companies offer minimum or no shipping cost.

Insure your Laptop Rental: Try to look for the laptop rental companies that offer leases that include laptop insurance at an affordable cost. Search for the companies that provide proper protection options to the users while traveling with the rented laptops.

Check the Software Specifications: Seek complete details regarding the system requirements in terms of hard drives, base software and operating system. If you need a custom software application that the company does not offer, ask them to provide a test machine well in advance so that you can load the software and check if it's functioning properly without any technical glitches. Apart from this, ask the rental company to arrange for someone who can test the laptops prior to the commencement of the event.

Allianz – Reasons for Computer Insurance

Nearly every business relies on computers to run its operations which means that events such as data loss, corruption of data, or a cyber-attack can result in both operational and reputational loss. Despite this, many businesses do not have appropriate cover in place. Watch our video to learn how a computer policy can offer peace of mind and protection, reducing the exposure to such risks.

School News | News |

>> The Centennial Board of Education will meet at 8 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 14.

>> First day of classes at Centennial will be on Wednesday, Aug. 16.

>> Sixth grade orientation at Cross County School will be Thursday, Aug. 10, at 6 p.m. Remember to bring signed computer papers and laptop insurance money. Forms can be downloaded from the school website.

>> Cross County School will host a back-to-school open house on Tuesday, Aug. 15, from 5:30-7 p.m. A free hamburger meal will be served. Kids can find their classrooms and say hello to their teachers.

Laptop deployment for grades 7-12 will be held Tuesday, Aug. 15 from 5:30-6:30 p.m. Parents and students will begin in the east gym. Paperwork can be downloaded ahead of time from the school website. They are asked to bring $35 or proof of insurance. Open paperwork and insurance is covered, they will receive a ticket to take to the library to pick up the laptops.

>> The first day of classes at Cross County will be on Wednesday, Aug. 16.

>> Cross County will have its team camp fundraiser, “Cash For Camps” on Aug. 18. This will help defray team camp costs for parents. Starting at 6:30 p.m., following sports scrimmages, there will be a meal, along with silent and live auctions. Guest speaker will be Sean Callahan. There are tickets available for attending the speaker’s presentation only, without the meal. Tickets are now on sale. Call 402-764-5521 or go to The public is welcome.

>> The Exeter-Milligan Boosters will meet on Tuesday, Aug. 8 at 7 p.m. in the music room at the Milligan site. This meeting is open to all Exeter-Milligan parents and patrons.

>> Exeter-Milligan will hold their open house on Thursday, Aug. 10 from 5 – 7 p.m. Grades K-2 and 7-12 will be at the Exeter site while Grades 3-6 will be at the Milligan site. Parents can meet the teachers, finalize schedules and tour the facility. Elementary parents may bring their child’s school supplies on this day to put in their desks. Parent informational packs will be distributed at this time.

>> Exeter-Milligan will hold their Lap Top Rollout on the first day of school, Tuesday, Aug. 15. Students should bring their completed laptop paperwork and the appropriate laptop deployment payment.

>> The first day of classes at Exeter-Milligan will be Tuesday, Aug. 15. School will dismiss at 2:20 p.m.

>> The Exeter-Milligan Boosters will hold their annual Tailgate Party on Friday, Sept. 8 during the Exeter-Milligan vs. Pawnee City football game.

>> Fillmore Central will hold their Fall Sports Night meeting at the high school on Sunday, July 30 starting at 5:45 p.m.

>> Fillmore Central will hold a FCCLA Officer Planning meeting on Wednesday, Aug. 9 at 6 p.m.

>> Fillmore Central FBLA Parli-Pro will meet at York College on Friday, Aug. 11.

>> Fillmore Central will hold an FBLA Officer meeting on Friday, Aug. 11 at 10 a.m. at the high school.

>> Fillmore Central will hold their Elementary Open House on Monday, Aug. 14 from 4:30 – 6 p.m.

>> Fillmore Central will hold their 9th Grade/New Student Orientation on Tuesday, Aug. 15 from 12 – 3:45 p.m.

>> Fillmore Central will hold a Middle School Pool Bash in Fairmont on Tuesday, Aug. 15 starting at 3 p.m.

>> Fillmore Central will hold their Middle School Open House on Tuesday, Aug. 15 from 4:30 – 6 p.m. in Fairmont.

>> The first day of classes at Fillmore Central will be on Wednesday, Aug. 16. Classes will dismiss at 1:10/1:30 p.m.

>> Heartland will host 7th Grade/New Student Orientation on Tuesday, Aug. 1 at 6 p.m. in the theater.

>> Heartland will hold their Sports Information Meeting on Tuesday, Aug. 1 in the theater. If you student in grades 7-12 plans on participating in a sport a parent/guardian needs to attend this meeting.

>> Computers will be distributed to Grades 7-12 on Aug. 8, 9 and 10 from 11:30 a.m. until 6 p.m. each day. Accounts need to be up to date and $30 will be needed for insurance. Parents and students need to sigh the user agreement form.

>> Heartland will hold their Elementary Open House on Tuesday, Aug. 15 from 7 – 8 p.m.

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>> First day of classes at Heartland will be on Wednesday, Aug. 16.

>> One Act Camp will be held at High Plains from Aug. 1-4 from 4 – 7 p.m. each day.

>> Fall sports practices will begin at High Plains on Monday, Aug. 7.

>> The High Plains Board of Education will meet at 7 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 14 in Clarks.

>> The first day of classes at High Plains will be held on Tuesday, Aug. 15. Classes will dismiss at 1 p.m.

>> Fall sports practices will begin on Monday, Aug. 7 at McCool.

>> McCool will hold an FFA Kickoff Party on Sunday, Aug. 13 from 4 – 8 p.m.

>> The McCool Board of Education will meet at 7:30 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 14.

>> McCool K-6 grade students will be able to meet their teachers on Tuesday, Aug. 15 from 5:30 – 7 p.m.

>> The first day of classes at McCool will be on Wednesday, Aug. 16. Classes will dismiss at 1:30 p.m.

>> Nebraska Lutheran High School will be hosting a Solar Eclipse Bash on Monday, Aug. 21 from 11 a.m. until 1:30 p.m. Guest speaker Earl Heidtke from Martin Luther College will present a fund and educational explanation of the total solar eclipse in the Nebraska Lutheran gym at 11 a.m. Doors will open at 10:30 a.m. At 11:30 a.m. a Grill Out will be held. Hamburgers, beans and watermelon will be served on the football field. A free will donation will be taken. Starting at 12 p.m. yard games such as kickball, tag and other games will held on the football field and will be organized by the Nebraska Lutheran Honor Society. And finally at 1 p.m. the eclipse will take place. Complimentary eclipse viewing glasses will be handed out on the football field for your safety. Come and view the total solar eclipse with us right in the path of totality in Waco. Open to the public and all ages.

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Cool Devices You Can Get for Your Laptop –

When a bigger part of the day is now spent with gadgets that entertain, track your health, tell you what to do, where to go, and manage your time, it is now almost impossible to live without them—and they are becoming even better and cooler. It really doesn’t matter if today you own a Mac or have Window, these tech gadgets will work to add value to your laptop. They not only make you more professional, but make your device laptop look awesome too.

Privacy Screen

If when commuting to different locations you often use your laptop then you need a privacy screen. When accessing your private information, perhaps at the bank hall, you can never know who is peeping. With a privacy screen, only the person sitting in front of the laptop can see what is on the screen, and that is you.

Media Slingbox/TV Flash Stick

Free yourself from being enslaved to endlessly trying to loop onto the solitary TV CNN feed when at the airport lounge. Get the Media Slingbox and tune into any TV programming by tuning in to your home cable box. This gadget connects to both your home broadband connection and your cable box, intercepting whatever is going through the cable box and then “slings” it onto your laptop, no matter the location.

For a student, the more cost-effective USB powered TV flash stick may do just as well. It enables watching and recording of digital TV on your student laptop!

Cable Lock

This is a good compromise between portability and security. It attaches your device to the table or desk securely. This is a great theft deterrent that not only protects your valuable data but also prevents your laptop from getting stolen. When you are leaving the coffee shop or any other public place, simply coil your cable and stow it away in the accompanying travel pouch. Some providers of laptop insurance may lower your premiums when your laptop has this gadget.

Chill Mat

It’s no secret that laptops overheat, and that may be good on a chilly day with the device sitting on your knees. However, when having the laptop as your personal heater is not your goal a Chill Mat may be the ideal accessory for reducing the heat and cooling down your laptop. Most Chill Mats have an ergonomic design that makes typing easier too.


If you don’t have a navigation device on the dashboard of your car or a handy 3G iPhone, it is still possible to obtain GPS by transforming your laptop into a useful navigation tool. With the CoPilot Live, you will not need to install any hardware. Rather, a small and convenient GPS receiver will sit on your car dash, relaying GPS info to your laptop via Bluetooth. Your car’s GPS position is continuously plotted on the maps as you drive. If you don’t have Bluetooth, a USB option is also available.


Whether your laptop is for personal use, business or for gaming, these are some of the latest must-have cool gadgets that will add value to your work, making your laptop easier to use, safer and generally better. With these gadgets, you’ll not only be better equipped, more tech-savvy but also have colleagues at the office green with envy.

Plaid puts out a ‘request for startups’ in nine underserved fintech sectors

Plaid wants to make it easier for financial services companies to serve consumers and businesses, but it also sees significant holes in the fintech ecosystem. As a result, the company has issued a Y Combinator-like “request for startups” to tackle particular issues where it believes significant innovation is lacking.

In case you don’t know, Plaid is a kind of picks-and-shovels tool provider for the fintech developer community. Like Yodlee before it, Plaid enables startups and other tech companies to more easily connect with banks, credit card companies and other financial institutions, both to authenticate consumer accounts and access their financial data.

Basically, if you’ve ever used a third-party mobile app to analyze or manage your personal finances, chances are good that it was using Plaid to make that connection.

This means Plaid’s RFS is not an entirely altruistic proposal for the betterment of the fintech community — it’s also a not-so-subtle call for companies it doesn’t already know about to use its products.

That said, because Plaid has such a broad view of the fintech ecosystem — every company I’ve ever mentioned to the founders was already a customer — it also has a pretty good idea of what is missing. And that’s part of what’s driving the call for startups in these areas.

Borrowing from Y Combinator, which has published and updated its own “request for startups” list for several years, Plaid has put out a call for companies going after specific problems. But while YC has published its list as a way to funnel startups into its accelerator, Plaid is still working out what it will do with those companies once it finds them. According to founder and CEO Zach Perret, Plaid is still figuring out how it can help companies that fit into these categories the most.

“We think these things have a lot of opportunity and these are areas where we’d love to see new things exist,” Perret said. “We want to help build a community and lay the blueprint for what we think could be good businesses, or find out more about businesses that already exist.”

It’s probably also worth noting that the RFS is not just Plaid’s wish list. In coming up with its nine emerging sectors, Perret said the company consulted with other fintech entrepreneurs, investors and bankers to find out where they thought innovation was lacking in the financial services industry.

So what kinds of companies is Plaid looking for? Its list, and a description of companies in each sub-sector it’s looking for, is below:

Better bills. Bills are often made to be opaque and unengaging, perhaps with the hope that consumers will “set it and forget it”. Tools that allow consumers to actively monitor, better understand, and easily update their bills are much needed. Likewise, bill / rate benchmarking services and simple credit products to avoid overdrafts or missed payments could also drive great consumer value.

Consumer-centric loan servicing. Once most loans in the United States are issued, they are immediately passed off to a servicer, who is responsible for collecting (“servicing”) the loan until it’s been fully paid off. This is generally an impersonal relationship, and in the event a loan reaches collections, it’s often dehumanizing. There is significant opportunity to create a consumer-centric loan servicing model that helps coach consumers out of debt and — ideally — helps them to build good credit.

Hardware + software for branches. In-branch banking is waning, but a significant portion of our banking interactions still occur in-person. 80% of mortgages are still issued in-person. Though the trend towards digital, asynchronous banking continues, it could take decades. In the meantime, there is significant opportunity to digitize the in-branch experience, for lending, account opening, Know Your Customer (KYC), and much more.

Tax preparation. Despite being a relatively straightforward problem to solve, there are few startups are focused on tax preparation. Digitizing the U.S. federal + state tax codes would for a great open-source project, and doing so could enable many new entrants.

Mobile bank account opening. Opening a new account is the entry point to working with a bank, yet doing so is a cumbersome process that still often requires in-person branch visits, phone calls, and multi-day wait times. There is a significant opportunity for an SDK that can be embedded in existing mobile banking applications to enable bank account opening on mobile devices.

Abstractions from the core. Almost every bank in the United States relies on a mainframe-based “core” banking platform, predominantly built by a few long-tenured providers (Fiserv, FIS, Jack Henry). Interfacing with these proprietary “core” systems is incredibly difficult (and often requires the cooperation of the core providers themselves), meaning that many banks cannot build new features or functionalities for their users. Creating an abstraction layer on top of the core to allow banks to innovate more quickly could have massive value.

Brokerage-as-a-Service. To build an investing or robo-advising application, developers must work with a clearing broker that executes trades and holds shares on behalf of an individual. As investing applications continue to grow, there is opportunity to build a modern back-end clearing service that brokerage and investment applications can be built upon.

“Exotic” insurance. There is increasing interest in non-traditional property and casualty insurance, particularly around short-term policies that cover specific items. For example, laptop insurance for a trip abroad, or bicycle insurance for just a few hours. As data becomes more plentiful, accurately pricing these policies will become more practical.

Compliance-as-a-Service. Regulatory and payments compliance is difficult for startups, yet more and more must figure it out every year. There could be opportunity for plug-and-play compliance programs and platforms for early stage companies to help satisfy requirements for KYC, AML, BSA, etc.

Get it right together – how parents can help pick the right university | Education

What to study and where is the first big decision that many young people have to make in their lives. It’s a choice that could shape their future career prospects, their friendship groups and their interests, so naturally they turn to their parents for advice.

Luckily, there is plenty of information for parents who want to support their children. So where to start? The course is number one. “My advice would be to encourage students to do what they love,” says computer science student Norah Lovelock, who chose the “wrong” subject and will swap to English literature next year. “They can always do other things to enhance their career prospects, such as volunteering or gaining work experience.”

Parents can help by teasing out what their sons or daughters really enjoy and even act as an antidote to teachers who are so passionate about their subject that they want all their star students to choose it. There are over 50,000 courses, covering a far broader scope than A-level subjects, but many students find out about them too late. Even within a subject there can be enormous variations between universities, says psychology student Jan Feeley, 19, who has just completed the first year of his degree at the University of Southampton. “I am the academic representative for my course and take feedback from students. One thing I have found is that a lot of people didn’t really look at what the course includes. It’s very important to research the individual modules,” he says.

Choosing a course that best suits a student’s interests helps with the personal statement on the application form, which is a chance for them to “sell” themselves. It has to be in their own words and not those of a parent or teacher, but it’s important to look at the guidance from Ucas and individual universities about what they like and what they don’t like to see in it.

Open days are an opportunity for students to get a feel for a place and find out more about the course, accommodation and surrounding area. “One thing I think people should definitely do is go online and get an idea of which halls they would be interested in before they arrive – and then visit them, because there are very different locations and buildings,” says Finn Hambly, a first-year student of natural sciences at the University of York.

“I went to lots of open days. My parents didn’t try and push me in one direction or another. To be honest, at times I wished they would just tell me what to do, but they asked questions and left the decision to me. In the end, I chose a brand new course,” says Hambly, from East Sussex.

His mother, Frances, found the open days fascinating. “I tended to look at everything with a critical eye but try not to say anything,” she says. “I went to one university and I really, really didn’t like it, but I just bit my lip because you try not to impart your feelings. Luckily, Finn didn’t think it was right for him. He told me his thoughts and I agreed.”

Once the decision is made and the packing starts, there’s an equally big role for parents. Small things, such as a plug extension lead or soft pillows, can make the transition easier – and a refresher course on food hygiene, cooking and laundry is invaluable.

Of course, it can be a traumatic when your child leaves home, but the good thing about university is that it is a half-way house – halls are well regulated and there are staff on hand to help and advise the students. And it won’t be long before they are back for Christmas, more grown up and, usually, more appreciative of you and home comforts.

Big steps – preparing your child for university

  • Reassure them they will have a great time but that you are only a text or phone call away if they get homesick.
  • Prepare a “university” kit of things they will find useful and help them choose nice things to personalise their room.
  • Check the household insurance to see if they are covered. If not, think about mobile phone and laptop insurance.
  • A quick course or refresher on food hygiene, cooking and laundry will definitely come in handy – plus advice on setting and keeping to a budget.
  • Talk about the difference between school and university. Lectures are just one small part of a degree – they will need to do independent study and plan their workload.

4 ways to improve SEO with schema and structured data

The Web is getting more complex, which means good SEO is getting harder and harder. While Google’s crawlers are getting more advanced, they’re still not perfect and sometimes have trouble deciphering information they discover on the Web.

This is where schema comes in. is a collaboration by the major search engines to create a consistent language that helps them understand entities and their relationship to one another. Structured data is one of the best ways for you to communicate important information about your website to Google.

At it’s essence, schema is code typically written in HTML or JSON (I prefer JSON) that helps Google better understand the data on your website. Google has attempted to incentivise the use of schema by displaying rich snippets for domains that use them. These rich snippets are essentially additional text or images that will result in a user being more likely to click on your result. No matter what industry you’re in, you can utilize website schema to help Google better understand your website’s information and improve your SEO.

Organization Schema

Official Documentation:

Even if you are brand new to the concepts of SEO and structured data as a whole, Organization schema is fairly straightforward and easy to wrap your head around. No matter what industry you belong to, as long as you are a business that sells products or services, Organization schema can be used on your website.

So what is Organization schema? Essentially, what this markup will do is signal to Google crucial information about your website. Within this structured data you can include business information such as your name, address, phone number and associated social profiles (Wikipedia, Facebook, Twitter, etc).

Organization schema can help your website in a number of ways. It can send clearer information about your business to Google. This is especially crucial for Local SEO where it’s important that your name, address and phone number are consistent across the Web. As well, Organization schema improves your chances of receiving a Knowledge Panel. Here it will be especially important to use same properties to associate your Wikipedia page and social profiles.

If you’re nervous about editing the HTML of your website, fear not! I would recommend using a schema generator to get started and then implementing it through Google Tag Manager.  

Industry-Specific LocalBusiness Schema

Official Documentation:

For some industries, you can make your structured data a little more specific than the Organization schema above. Instead of simply telling Google: “I am a general organization with the following information”, you can give the search engines more detailed data on what your business does. So what kind of industries have LocalBusiness schema available to them?

Doctors? Check

Lawyers? Check

Insurance Agents? Check

Your local mechanic? Check

Whatever broad category defines your industry, try Googling “[Your Profession] Schema” and see if any results come back. If you find one that fits your business, you should use that in place of the Organization schema to be more specific.

Once again this will help Google get a better understanding of your business. As well, in the future, Google could very well offer some sort of rich snippet for your particular industry. If this occurs, you will be well set up for any algorithm changes that may occur.

BreadcrumbList Schema

Official Documentation:

If you’re not using a breadcrumb on your website, I would recommend you consider doing so. Breadcrumbs can be a great way to improve the user experience of a website as they will allow users to navigate through the different page levels with little effort. As well, they can also improve the internal linking structure which is crucial for better distributing link equity throughout your site.

If you’re using a breadcrumb, great! Now it’s time to mark up it up with BreadcrumbList structured data. The BreadcrumbList schema will define each URL in the breadcrumb to Google. This can be beneficial because you can generate a clean looking breadcrumb rich snippet in the search results.

More importantly, you will be giving Google detailed information about the structure of your website. This may not have tremendous advantages if you manage a small ten page website. However, if you have a large eCommerce store, this is extremely useful information to pass along. Google’s crawlers often have a difficult time crawling these large websites and they can potentially spend a lot of time looking at pages they shouldn’t.

However, by implementing the BreadcrumbList schema, you will be giving Google clear information about the hierarchy of your website. This will give it better guidance on how to crawl and discover the pages on your domain. In my experience, if you can make Google’s job easier, this is likely to have a positive impact on rankings.

AggregateRating Schema

Official Documentation:

Of all of the structured data on this list, AggregateRating schema probably has the most tangible results. If implemented correctly, this type of structured data rewards websites with bright yellow stars that appear in the search results. The final outcome is that search results that display these stars typically end up with higher click through rates. Higher click through rates obviously leads to more organic traffic.

Not surprisingly, this type of schema is extremely popular amongst eCommerce stores as specific product queries typically trigger results with review star rich snippets. For product-centric websites, implementing this type of schema is an absolute must as Google is either already displaying review stars for your target queries or could possibly show them in the future.

However, even if your website isn’t eCommerce, it could still be worth exploring the possibility of implementing AggregateRating schema. There are many examples where websites with non-physical products or services could benefit from this structured data. For instance, after performing a search for “laptop insurance” I can see that Google is displaying review star snippets for the query:

To find an example of review stars, I had to navigate all the way to the fourth page of the search results. None of the websites on the first page have these review stars displaying. This presents a good opportunity for the company to first implement AggregateRating schema on their landing page.

At the end of the day, schema is going to help take your SEO to the next level. As companies invest more and more into in-house and SEO agencies, it’s getting increasingly more difficult to compete in the limited real estate of the organic search results. Implementing good schema will help give your website an additional competitive advantage and can result in Google being more likely to rank your key landing pages.

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