Showing posts with label Technology. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Technology. Show all posts

Thursday, August 23, 2012

What does Kansas City have that most cities would love to have?

What title does Kansas City have that most cities would love to have?

Some people would say "Best Barbecue". And most would agree that Kansas City is #1 here.

Others would say "Most Fountains". Outside of Rome, Kansas City is #1 with the most fountains. 

If you said "Best Architecture Firms". You wouldn't be far off. Did you know that some of the most sought after architecture firms are from Kansas City?

If you're an outdoor lover, you would say "Most Parks". The fact is Kansas City developed the first master-plan city park system. Kansas City is full of parks and still boasts one of the largest parks in the nation.

If you're an entrepreneur you would probably say, "Its entrepreneurial spirit." The late Ewing Marion Kauffman not only brought Major League Baseball to Kansas City, but he also started the Kauffman Foundation. The Kauffman Foundation is often referred as the "World's Largest Foundation Devoted to Entrepreneurship".

If you have read a recent government report you would probably say that Kansas City boast one of the "most productive work forces in the nation".

Many people would argue that Kansas City is the "Best Little Big City" in the nation. 
Kansas City has a NASCAR race track.
A pro football team.
A pro baseball team.
A pro soccer team
A top notch performing arts venue like the Kauffam Center for Preforming Arts
A World Class Museum like the Nelson Atkins Museum.
And an improved zoo.

I don't think you would be off if you even said that most would love to be like Kansas City because we're in the "Center of the U.S.", our "Rich History", our "Jazz and Blues", or our "Sweet Personality of its Residents". 

You could find some great data supporting all of these claims and titles.

These are all great answers.

If you have said anyone of these answers you would probably be correct most of the time.

But none of those are the #1 title that most cities would love to have. Any more guesses? 

So what is the #1 title that Kansas City has that most cities would love to have, you ask?

The world would love to have the "Technology War Title". Yep, if you didn't know it, there is a technology war going on here in our backyards.

Think about it. We once had one large mobile phone company in Kansas City called Sprint. In fact, it was headquartered in a large nearly 4 million square foot office park. Supposedly the largest single company office park in the nation.

Then Kansas City had a couple companies called Garmin and Cerner pop up. 

Now we have the big tech companies in our backyards. That is right. Apple, Microsoft and Google have all decided to have a physical presence in Kansas City and I don't mean just selling us Kansas Citians products over the internet or through a Best Buy or Microcenter store. I mean they have actually opened up stores. How many cities can say that they have all three of the power technology companies in their cities?

Apple opened a store. Then another store. Yep, we have two stores in Kansas City. A few cities can say they have an Apple store, but few can say they have two Apple stores.
Apple Store 

Training Room in the Microsoft Store at the Oak Park Mall
Located in a suburban Kansas City mall, Microsoft opened its 20th store in the nation in the biggest and probably best shopping mall outside of the Mall of America. With 23 stores nationwide, Kansas City is in a lucky group.

Sure, Apple and Microsoft having a presence in the same city is a big deal, but add Google into the picture and this is truly amazing.

Not to be outdone, Google chose Kansas City out of 19,429 U.S. cities to to install their first Google Fiber service. That is like you personally winning a 300 million dollar power ball ticket. Not only is the Google Fiber service amazing, it will be delivered to households at a very reasonable price. Like a third of the cost of Verizon's fiber with like 3 times more service.

The service is so amazing I have seen representatives from Microsoft, Apple, Verizon, Comcast, Time Warner; as well as, a host of other technology companies at technology conferences hosted by Google. These reps are BUG EYED as they learn about Google's plans for Kansas City. 

The tech world and people outside of Kansas City would really like to have the tech battle that is brewing in Kansas City in their backyards. I hope the people from Kansas City, Kansas and Missouri understand how big this is before the September 9th deadline comes. 

Kansas City is changing and making some history. Will you be a part of it?

If you live in the Kansas City Metropolitan area, you need to see what all of the talk is about. 
Checkout Google Fiber.

Lets do this for Kansas City.

Don't worry if you live in the suburbs like me, if it catches on, it will get to us.

If you would like to see how Google can help your business, consider attending the next Google Business Seminar.

In the meantime, I'll post more about the technology war in future post. I

RE/MAX sells more homes than any other real estate company.
For a reason...should we talk?

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Comments are appreciated! Go ahead and add your 2 cents . . .

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Google Plus is a Hit in my Book! Checkout these 14 Google+ Resources

I have been using Google Plus for a few days now and really like the direction of Google +. It is kinda a cross between Facebook and Twitter. Although many people have said that it is competing against Facebook, I think it will give Twitter more competition at the beginning. 

Although the Google Plus creators have said that the business edition will be coming out this fall, I think it will be out much earlier. The applications for being included in the business edition stopped yesterday.

Google Plus will be very beneficial for sales people whether you're a Business to Business or Business to Consumer salesperson. I look forward to the exciting changes that have been added the past week; as well as, the changes being planned for the near future.

Conclusion: Google Plus is a bold and dramatic attempt at social. The ability to view updates from specific groups started with Facebook but has been perfected with this Google project. That is right, project. Google calls Google Plus a “project” rather than a “product” because it is a work in progress — they don’t want users to think that they just released a final product. 
Overall, Google+ is solid and I really like its speed. It is NOT a Facebook killer or a game-changer, yet! I think Google learned a lesson with Google Wave and is releasing Google Plus like they did Gmail.
The winner of the Google, Facebook and Twitter war will be who can keep users coming back everyday for the months ahead. We know Facebook can do. Does Google have the project to do it? I think so. 
If you're just starting with Google Plus, start slow. You may have made some mistakes with Facebook and Twitter. This is your time to start new groups, interact with new people and create a social media plan that works for your business.

If you're lucky enough to get an invite, checkout these resources to help get you started.

1) Add a Google Plus profile picture
2) Add a Google Plus Badge on your website or blog (Make sure you add your profile url)
3) Checkout the Mashable Google Plus Guide
4) View and print the Google Cheat Sheet
5) Read the Google Plus Unofficial Blog
6) Read the Google Plus Official Blog
7) Get started with Google Plus Circles
8) Why Google Plus will never replace your blog, by Chris Brogan
9) Ideas on how to use Google Plus to Blog, by Chris Brogan
10) If you have a Wordpress blog, use this to add a Google Plus button
11) Here are some FAQ and answers in laymen terms about Google Plus
12) Why Google Plus is going to change the web, by Tech Republic
13) 61 Google Plus Tips and Tricks, kind of like a cheat sheet
14) 15 Google Plus Chrome Add-ons for Newbies

If you're not lucky enough to get an invite, visit my Facebook Page and request an invite on my profile or send me an email with the email address you want to be signed up on Google Plus. 

FYI: Invites have been faster with gmail addresses. I have even heard invites have not been arriving to people not using gmail addresses.

Lets connect on Google Plus and share some great ideas! My user profile is:

RE/MAX sells more homes than any other real estate company.
For a reason...should we talk?

Blog post written by the Dowell Taggart Team of RE/MAX Premier Realty

Comments are appreciated! Go ahead and add your 2 cents . . .
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Dowell Taggart Team Kansas City Real Estate Network

Thursday, March 17, 2011

I wonder if the new Logitech customer service is winning customers - I don't think so!

I have been an avid fan of Logitech. I have multiple headsets including the 7-1 surround sound headsets. I have multiple keyboards. Oh, I even have multiple internet cameras including the orbital camera.

Lately though, I haven't been impressed with their customer service. My kids got one of the Logitech Google TV systems. The remote control works great on the internet. The problem is the remote control doesn't perform the tv functions as advertised.

After having my teenage high tech straight A kids play around with hooking the remote control and contacting Logitech customer service, I decided to get involved. My kids said, "Good Luck."

Now I understand what they are talking about. After calling the Logitech customer service 4 or 5 times and getting switched to the tech support I got the same result. I got hung up on every time.  Now remember, Logitech is supposed to be a high tech company, so I'm assuming I didn't get accidently disconnected every time.

I'll keep buying Logitech hardware. I just might not rush out and buy the next Logitech product. I'll wait and read the reviews before I'll decide my next Logitech purchase.

Not sure this is the kind of customer service that a high tech company is looking to strive for in this new decade. What do you think? What kind of customer service have you had with Logitech? What kind of customer service do you expect?

RE/MAX sells more homes than any other real estate company.

For a reason...should we talk?

Let us know what you think or add to our blog by writing a comment. Do you have a real estate question for the Real Estate Wizards? Email us at

Blog post written by the Dowell Taggart Team of RE/MAX Best Associates

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

The Top 13 Kansas City Social Media And Technology Trend Predictions For 2011

The Top 13 Kansas City Social Media And Technology Trend Predictions For 2011

This is always an exciting time of the year. We just celebrated Christmas, Hanukkah and of course New Years. You may have just gotten back from visiting family and now you’re planning a Colorado ski trip or a sunny vacation in Texas or Florida.

Now we’re into 2011 and you’re wondering what the new years will hold for you? What will be the major social media and technology trends to look out for? And how will this whole social media thing play out?

Here’s a few things we do know.

The rate at which technology is changing our online world is pretty awe inspiring. The changes we see almost daily on our social media sites are an indication of that. I have been monitoring some important blogs and I have been noticing many changes being announced about social media.

If you haven’t realized, you need to realize that the online world that we operate in today will look vastly different in just 6 months from now, let alone a few years.

If you’re ready to accept this and be open to this continual change, then you’re in a great position to capitalize on the Top 13 Kansas City Social Media and Technology Trends for 2011.

1. More Social Media adaptation in Kansas City

If you’ve been using the Top 5 social media sites for more than few years – Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube and a blog, then you’re considered an early adopter. Slowly the rest of Kansas City is catching on.

When Harvard and Browns Universities started teaching Social Media classes, you knew this `stuff’ was important and no longer just a fad.

Does Google have social media figured out? Not completely. Google has many of the spokes mastered like Youtube and Gmail. Now they are working on their masterpiece, Google Me. Google Me was anticipated to be released by December of 2010. Now the rumours are that Google Me will be released in the spring of 2011.

Prediction: More people in Kansas City will adopt social media as their key platform of personal and professional communication, networking, branding, marketing and sales. It’s here to stay. Yes, my prediction is social media will grow. My measuring stick for full acceptance is when my parents start using any of the top social media sites. I also look for Google Me to really change the social media landscape and more people to jump onto the social media bandwagon..

2. Single User Access to Multiple sites in Kansas City

We already know that Facebook Connect has been widely adopted by individuals and businesses alike in Kansas City. It makes sense to make it as easy as pie for people to connect with you on your website using one of the largest social media sites as your login credentials. Plus it spreads the word further by ensuring every action they take on your site is shared on Facebook.

YouTube was smart to allow Google Connect on their site, so that you could use your Gmail login to access our account.

Prediction: More social media sites will allow for this single access sign-on using one main login credential in Kansas City. Perhaps even merging – i.e using your Facebook login for Twitter or vice versa too. This will make it far more likely that people will interact across the platforms on a more regular basis. At the same time their online footprint will be available on more sites and also their information….

3. New laws on privacy

We all want the scoop on the next big fad, but we’d like to share as little as possible about ourselves....The battle between privacy and secrecy will rage on, with the side of the fence you're on depending in large part on your age.The trend away from privacy concerns many of us. We understand the desire for transparency, but when is enough, enough? Who currently holds the power? Is it the Mark Zuckerbergs’ of this world who have virtually all your personal information at their fingertips? Or the governments who can shut down such a social media site at will on one hand, and demand access to your information on the other?

A great example of this was China’s government banning Google earlier this year and the power battles that ensued. I know we’re not in China and Kansas City isn’t under a communist regime, but have you really read the privacy statements that social media sites have? Surprise yourself, get informed.

Prediction: Ongoing privacy issues will lead to a tightening up on the key social media sites and a universal legislation developed. This will primarily deal with the increasing attacks on our privacy due to the amount of information we’re putting out and who owns this. The information as always been there, it is just easier for unwanted people to get to it. Look for universal legislation to address online privacy.

4. Social Media TV in Kansas City

Twitter has already stated they want to be the real-time TV channel of the decade. They showed it at the MTV Awards earlier this year. By allowing TV fans watching to interact by tweeting, they bridged a connection of the online world to the offline world in real time.

It’s getting easier and easier to make and produce videos and more personalities are tending towards creating their own `free’ TV channels that will compete with mass media. Gary Vaynerchuk’s Wine Library TV is a great example of this.

Google has gone to the next level and have joined Apple in producing TV access to the internet. If you haven’t checked it out, head over to a friends house who has it or over to Best Buy. It is really cool. Google has even produced TV access to the Android operating software.

Prediction: Major networks will look to host online channels with free and paid for access to content in real-time. They will seek to partner with influential individuals creating great TV content through social networks. Look for more TV access to your TV and phone. With 4G access, this will grow..

5. Merging of the big names with the upstarts

It’s not just the big companies like Google and Microsoft that acquire startups with new technology. Some of the main social media sites have done a great job at acquiring companies that have built valuable applications and plugins to extend their platforms.

6 weeks ago I was reading about an awesome startup on a blog post. When I started surfing for the company, I found out that the recent success and publicity of the startup led it to be acquired by another company.

Prediction: Smaller social media sites and services will look to merge to become a larger entity able to compete on a bigger stage, along with LinkedIn and Facebook. It wouldn’t come as a surprise if MySpace became integrated with YouTube to enhance its dying service in a unique creative spin-off merging a site with a local TV network.

6. Online marketing spending will increase

It’s been baffling to read reports of the continual spending on traditional forms of marketing such as magazines, billboards, TV ads and print fliers. Especially when the figures clearly show that it’s becoming way less effective in a world dominated by online users. I can understand 15 years ago when 85% of a companies marketing budget was spent on traditional marketing. We’re in a new decade. Hopefully more Kansas City companies will get wiser.

Newsflash- we don’t look up from our laptops, netbooks, smartphones or tablets to read that billboards anymore (ok slight exaggeration but you’re nodding your heads in agreement). Look at what has happened to the Kansas City Star over the last 15 years. If you’re going to sell an old unwanted item in your home, would you go to the Kansas City Star or Craiglist in Kansas City?

Prediction: Finally this ridiculous activity of spending huge amounts of money on traditional forms of advertising will shift towards spending online. Companies will recognize the value of the potential audiences they can reach for far less and much more quickly and invest in social media as a delivery vehicle. Look for ads on Google, Facebook and maybe someday, Twitter, to increase because of their targeted traffic.

7. Smartphone dominance in Kansas City

First, I’m going to start with, 4G is in Kansas City. Yes, you read that right. Most of the major cell phone carriers have installed or retrofitted their cell towers to carry the fast 4G service. If you think it is a fad. You’re thinking wrong. 4G service is much faster than 3G service.

Why is this important? With over 70% of the world having mobile access now it’s only time before many of those become smartphones. Imagine what this means for us as individuals, but more importantly businesses seeking a global audience.

Prediction: Look for more people to access the internet with their cell phones in 2011.

8. Kansas City will expand to the International communities

The above prediction means of course that Kansas City businesses will go more global. The fact that China’s social network is larger than Facebook and Brazil’s is close on its heels means there’s a wide audience not dominated by the western world.

Prediction: The ability to start a Kansas City business and go online with international partners and offerings will become far easier. New services will be catering to language barriers and payments to ensure this trend becomes mainstream.

9. Women power

The recent report put out by Intuit shows that over the next decade, women around the world will enter the workforce at an unprecedented rate.  Close to 1 billion women, who had not previously participated in the mainstream global economy will do so by 2020. This includes the women of Kansas City.

The fastest growing demographic of Facebook users are currently 55 year old plus women. We are creating a She-conomy. Plus women are naturally more social so it makes sense that we are adapting well to the social media sites.

Prediction: Look for more Kansas City businesses recognizing the growth in usage by women and starting to create customized products and services online to cater to them.

10. Consumers shape the online marketplace

Thanks to the number of amazing tools and services we have out our disposal these days it’s starting to transform the communities we build and the relationships we make online and offline.

Recent results have shown that nontraditional influencers, such as bloggers and social network contacts are the key people we turn to before making a purchasing decision. It makes sense really, you generally buy on recommendations from friends, right?

Now you have these social networks where you’re exposed to your friend’s friends’ too and their influence will continue to expand.

Prediction: Kansas City businesses are going to be forced to step up and take on multiple, inter-connected approaches to reach new customers, most of whom are hanging out on the web. Look for more Kansas City businesses to find influencers and have them starting to give recommendation about their products or services.  We will see more companies using their customers as the face of their business – either by sponsoring bloggers or highlighting top customers in their online campaigns.

11. Look for more Android Tablets to hit the Kansas City market

Over the course of 2010 the rumours circulated the technology market that tablets will hit the holiday season and compete with the Apple IPad. The only 2 big players who had tablets in Kansas City for the holidays were Viewsonic and Samsung. Both of them had many limitations and they were no IPad. They don’t operate like an oversized phone because the operating software, Android, was developed for a small mobile phone screen.

It only makes sense for the Android Tablets to grow. Look at how fast the Android App market is growing. In 45 days over 100,000 Android Apps were added to the Android market place. Until new Android software gets developed to use on tablets, I wouldn’t upgrade or go out and grab a tablet yet.

Prediction: The rumours are that Google is about to release a new update to the Android operating software in the next month and that it will work on tablets much easier. Kansas City retailers should start getting the new tablets that are hitting the retail market in the next 60 days. Tablets are fun and I see them really picking up in sales in Kansas City by the summer of 2011.

12. Which Social Media Club should I join?

That is a million dollar question. What disturbs me is that I have heard rumours that the metropolitan Kansas City area is not big enough for multiple social media groups. That is bogus! Just as people are different, so are social media media groups in Kansas City. Kansas City is a big city and can support multiple social media groups.

Prediction: I  look for more social media groups to grow in Kansas City. I predict that the current social media groups to form more of an identity and work to encourage more people to use social media. I also predict that the current groups will work together to promote tweetups, mashups and conferences.

13. Mobile applications replace traditional web applications

The smart phones have now become the web in your hand. This has emerged in just the last 3 years with the introduction of the Apple iPhone leading the charge with a design that took technology from the geeks by designing interfaces that are natural  and intuitive with a usable interface that put technology power in the hands of the masses. The high speed mobile and wireless networks have also evolved to provide the backbone to distribute the data including video and images. It is transforming industries such as music, book publishing, online shopping and newspapers. Mobile makes it even easier to share with your friends with Facebook and Twitter apps at your fingertips.

Prediction: If you can’t carry it with you, you’re wasting your time. If you don’t advertise via mobile enabled apps, you’re wasting our time. Look at even faster 4G speeds to help increase mobile applications.

These are just some of the trends that 2011 holds. Do you think I’m right on or I’ve gone raving mad? Do you have some more to add? Let’s hear em!

RE/MAX sells more homes than any other real estate company.

For a reason...should we talk?

Let us know what you think or add to our blog by writing a comment. Do you have a real estate question for the Real Estate Wizards? Email us at

Blog post written by the Dowell Taggart Team of RE/MAX Best Associates

Saturday, August 21, 2010

How to Search Kansas City Homes for Sale from Your Mobile Smart Phone - It's Free!

The Dowell Taggart Team is pleased to announce  . . .

Search Kansas City Homes for Sale from Your Mobile Smart Phone. All you need is the ability to get on the internet. 

Now you can find out the price and general information of any listing you drive by.

All you need is internet capabilities. Here is what you do . . .

1) 1st Way is to input in your mobile browser. You'll go straight to a page that you can search Kansas City homes for sale. You can search by address, City & State, or by features.

2) 2nd way is input - in the address bar. This feature is similar to the the search above.

3) Look up a Kansas listing for sale by inputting - in the browser. This feature works for all homes for sale in the local Kansas City MLS. You can virtually drive by any real estate sign and search the data on the home on your web enabled phone.

Let us know what you think or add to our blog by writing a comment.

Blog post written by the Dowell Taggart Team of RE/MAX Best Associates

Find out why you should contact the Dowell Taggart Team for your Kansas City real estate needs . . . .
     We can help you with online real estate tools that less than 10 Kansas City REALTORS use
     Search 21,000 homes for sale in Kansas City including foreclosures, short sales, luxury homes and more . . .
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Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Top 12 Free Wifi Spots in Olathe, Kansas

Top 12 Free Wifi Spots in Olathe, Kansas

1) Panera Restaurant on 119th & Blackbob (by Dick's Sport Goods) This place gets crowded.
2) Panera Restaurant on 151st & I-35 (by Home Depot) - you can typically find a seat.
3) First Watch on 120th & Blacbob - Food is awesome, only a few spots have outlets.
4) Starbucks Coffee  on 119th & Ridgeview (by Bass Pro) - You should find seats easily.
5) Starbucks Coffee on 119th & Blackbob (by Marshalls) - Seats fill up fast.
6) Starbucks Coffee on 151st & Blackbob - Should be able to find seats fast.
7) McDonald's on 121st & Stang Line Rd - Mealtimes can get crowded.
8) McDonald's on Santa Fe & Mur-Len - Mealtimes can get crowded.
9) McDonald's on 151st & I-35 - Mealtimes can get crowded.
10) Austin's on 151st & Mur-len - Verified with manager. Worked 2 out of 3 times. Good food!
11) Olathe Libaray on 129th & Blackbob - Not the fastest connection.
12) Olathe Library on 210 E. Park Street - I haven't used this connection much.

During my research I found many places that claimed they had free wifi, but once I tried them out their wifi didn't work. There were a few places that I went back to several times over a month and their wifi still didn't work.

Starbuck's wifi works a little different. First you must use a card 5 times before the wifi is free.

Let us know what you think or add to our blog by writing a comment.

Blog post written by the Dowell Taggart Team of RE/MAX Best Associates

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