Monday, April 28, 2008

E-Commerce Report




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April 28, 2008

Users Demand Expertise at How-To Web Sites
By BOB TEDESCHI

IF the Internet can make anyone a star, can it turn Barnes & Noble into one, too?

The bookseller has taken another step beyond its traditional business into the online publishing world, recently introducing Quamut.com, a site that teaches Web users things as diverse as the basics of football and how to build a Web site.

“Building a how-to Web site” is not on the list, but judging from the number of such sites in existence, it may be easier to do than follow a football game.

Quamut is the latest brand to capitalize on what company executives said is a growing disinclination among Web users for amateur how-to advice. Whether that distaste can support a departure from Barnes & Noble’s core business is a question investors will be considering.

“I think it’s an interesting experiment,” said Sameet Sinha, an Internet analyst with the JMP Group, an investment firm. “But Quamut will have to show up very well in searches, and doing that will not be easy.”

Quamut differentiates itself from the long list of how-to sites like eHow, HowStuffWorks.com and, to a lesser degree, About.com (which is owned by The New York Times Company), with a somewhat novel twist: selling downloadable documents of its otherwise free content.

For instance, users who want to know how to make sushi can browse through 15 pages of information, like “how to make sushi rice,” or can copy and print the information themselves. But Quamut sells a more polished version in a six-page color document for about $3. The document, in PDF, is without ads “and all the junk on the sides,” said Daniel Weiss, Quamut’s publisher and managing director.

“We think these will be a very big hit,” Mr. Weiss added. “We’ve seen some evidence of that already. People often need that physical reference.”

This is far from the first online publishing initiative for Barnes & Noble, Mr. Weiss said. Among other efforts, the company in 2001 bought SparkNotes, an online study guide series, and helped oversee the expansion . . .


http://topics.nytimes.com/top/reference/timestopics/people/b/victoria_beckham/index.html?inline=nyt-per

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Article

Kylie bombs in the US


SMH Australia: April 11, 2008

Kylie Minogue has bombed in the US. The Australian pop princess hoped to score big on the American music charts with the release of her latest album X last week, but when the numbers were released today she only managed to sell a paltry 5500 copies.

The poor sales meant X debuted on America’s Billboard charts at a lowly 139.

The US market, unlike Australia, Europe and Asia where she has dominated, has again proved elusive.

Minogue, 39, appeared to do everything right to promote the album.

She performed two songs in front of almost 30 million US TV viewers on America’s Dancing with the Stars and in an interview on Ellen DeGeneres’ talkshow she dropped a bombshell when she revealed for the first time a doctor had initially misdiagnosed her breast cancer.

There were also appearances on NBC’s top-rating US morning TV news-entertainment program, Today, and a late night spot on the CBS talkshow hosted by comedian Craig Ferguson.

Some critics say Minogue and her handlers picked the wrong single to perform on the talkshows, the slower tempo All I See.

Minogue was well aware of how hard the US market was to crack with her style of pop music.

“It’s a notoriously difficult market,” Minogue said in her interview on Today.

“You have so many denominations with radio.

“To know where I fit within that market is sometimes difficult.”

AAP

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Wellbutrin


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Review of Therapeutic Equivalence
Generic Bupropion XL 300 mg and Wellbutrin XL 300 mg


Between January 1 and June 30, 2007, FDA received 85 post-marketing reports in which patients who switched from Wellbutrin XL 300 mg to Teva’s bupropion formulation (Budeprion XL 300 mg) experienced an undesirable effect. Specifically, in 78 of these cases, there was a reported loss of antidepressant effect following a switch from the branded to generic product. In addition to the loss of effect, a number of cases also reported the new onset or worsening of side effects. The reported side effects were consistent with the adverse effects in labeling for bupropion products. More than half of the patients who switched back to Wellbutrin XL 300 mg reported improvement of depression and/or abatement of side effects.

Given the temporal relationship between the switch to the generic product and the recurrence of depression and/or onset of side effects, these patients and physicians attributed these effects to poor performance of the generic product. These reported cases occurred at a time when sales data suggest that hundreds of thousands of patients using Wellbutrin XL were switched to the newly available Teva bupropion XL. The question is whether the reported lack of efficacy and/or new onset side effects in these patients who switched suggest a problem with the generic product, i.e., lack of bioequivalence to the branded product, or have some other explanation.

In order to evaluate this series of post-marketing reports, we have re-examined both the data on the bioequivalence of the two products (Wellbutrin XL and Teva's bupropion XL) and what is known about the natural history of treated depression.
What is the regulatory history of Wellbutrin and generic buproprion?

Bupropion hydrochloride is a drug used to treat Major Depressive Disorder (MDD). For many years bupropion was available only under the brand name Wellbutrin. It was first approved in 1985 as an immediate release (IR) tablet (Wellbutrin-IR) taken three times a day. In 1996, FDA approved a sustained-release tablet of bupropion (Wellbutrin SR), allowing twice a day dosing. In 2003, FDA approved an extended-release tablet of bupropion (Wellbutrin XL), allowing once a day dosing. Wellbutrin SR and Wellbutrin XL were approved based on the similarity of plasma levels of bupropion produced by these longer-acting products taken once or twice a day to the immediate-release product taken three times a day. The antidepressant effect of this drug does not appear for several weeks after initiation of treatment, and the effect is, in large part, related to long-acting metabolites. Therefore, no clinical effectiveness studies were considered necessary or required for the approval of Wellbutrin SR or Wellbutrin XL. Wellbutrin is owned by Smith Kline Beecham, a division of GlaxoSmithKline, and is manufactured by Biovail.

The law requires that generic drugs approved by FDA have the same active ingredient, dosage form, route of administration, and labeling as the branded product, and that the generic and branded drug be bioequivalent. The law also requires that generic drug applicants ensure the identity, quality, strength, and purity of their drug products. Bioequivalence means the generic drug's rate and extent of absorption do not show a significant difference from the branded drug's rate and extent of absorption. Statistics are used to analyze whether differences are considered significant. Generic drug products approved by FDA are therapeutically equivalent to the branded product. Therapeutically equivalent drugs generally may be substituted for each other with the expectation that the substituted product will produce the same clinical effect and safety profile when used according to the labeling.

In 2006, a generic XL version of bupropion, marketed as Budeprion XL, was approved by FDA. This generic formulation is manufactured by Impax Laboratories and distributed by Teva Pharmaceuticals. FDA approved this generic . . .
more

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

[D]evolution of library and information services


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Managing the evolution of library and information services


Pre-order your copy today and save $200...

Library and information services have gone through a rapid period of transformation. Technology advances have radically altered both people’s understanding of what constitutes information as well as how it is accessed and used. This has created a gulf between the old library set-up and practices, and how end users now expect to interact with the information available to them.

Not only do librarians and information professionals need to rapidly revise their roles in this new technologically-enabled landscape, but they also need to collaborate with other business support functions like never before. This will enable them to deliver not only the value expected of them on an internal level, but also to the business’s external clients.

Against this more challenging background, however, library and information services are also faced the increasing prospect of budgetary and staff cuts. Never before has the role of the librarian been so questioned or undervalued. However, it is perhaps today – through the innovative and collaborative use of technology, as well as a more strategic business outlook – that library and information services can really make a crucial difference to how businesses operate.

In this new Ark Group report, Managing the evolution of library and information services, will explore this changing landscape and what it means for library and information service professionals. This report will cover topics including:

- How is information defined in the modern business age?
- How has technology impacted the way people interact with and use information?
- What impact has this had on the traditional idea of library and information services?
- How successfully have libraries so far evolved to meet the new expectations of information end users?
- What is the changing role of the librarian today?
- How can librarians become more efficient and valued despite budgetary cuts?
- Collaboration: the way forward for library and information services?
- Where next for library and information services?

Managing the evolution of library and information services includes expert contributions from a wide variety of businesses and professionals operating in this field, including:

- Borden Ladner Gervais LLP
- Dechert LLP
- BP America
- Dickstein Shapiro LLP
- Adobe Systems
- Proskauer Rose LLP
- McDonalds
- Duane Morris LLP
- Dorsey & Whitney LLP
- Xerox
- Weaton Franciscan Healthcare

For librarians and information professionals that are ahead of their game, the new landscape offers a wealth of opportunities for development and success. This in-depth report will provide not only the insights necessary to evolve in changing times, but will also allow you to learn from your peers who are tackling and overcoming the same challenges you face on a day-to-day level.

Managing the evolution of library and information services will be available at the end April; however you can preorder your copy today.

To take advantage of an exclusive $200 pre-publication discount, making your copy only $345 – simply place your order before April 15th.

To order your copy/copies, simply contact Michelle Elam at melam@ark-group.com or +1 309 681 0960 with your details and place your order quoting the code MP-LIB1

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Institutional holdings


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MFFAIS - Mutual Fund Facts About Individual Stocks

It started with simple curiosity ... Are top mutual funds taking similar positions on a specific stock?
Why can't we find more then the top 10 holders?
What is the current value of a mutual funds reported holdings?
Which mutual funds has the best Performance base on reported holdings?
What is the most dumped stock by mutual funds?
What is the most added stock by mutual funds?
How can we compare mutual fund holdings, seeing overlaps and direction?


We've discovered ... We can determine exactly Who bought or sold What
We can compare to previous filings, to see activity type, amount and results.
All the "major" financial web portals obtain their limited information from the same source.
Everyone lists the top 10 stock holders, because they public companies are required to.
With only 2 exceptions, no one even tries to list beyond the top 10 and "total cash" inflows/outflow
All other "counts" are 13F's - which is limited to large orginizations/institutions with investment discretion over 100 million or more 13F securites.
There is a "list of 13F securities" - which all have CUSIPs (U.S. listed and doesn't include all public companies).
The 13F forms are easily computer processed with the ability to match exactly which stock is being referenced thanks to CUSIPs.
Did we mentioned it is only 13F securities by large institutions and "totaled". It does not break down to individual funds, or even "smaller" funds.
Mutual Funds who reported their holdings in quarterly and semi-annual basis don't use CUSIPs, the use whatever name and format they want - making it alot of work to process the holdings!
Mutual Funds merge,close and change names very often!
By correlating this information, we can try to determine similar actions or patterns.


Which funds are buying/selling/holding similar stocks?
We answer that question!



We invite you to join us ... Although the information is not in "real time", it is"objective".
What is meant by "objective"? Simply, no opinions, just the facts.
Money talks, by seeing where fund managers are putting their money (or taking money away) gives individual investors another unique prospective.
Unlike analysts, market gurus, friends, etc.. Fund managers results are verifiable and obtainable.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Fair Use Project


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Go to story to follow good embedded links.

Harry Potter Opens Today!


No, it's not another Harry Potter movie that opens today. Rather, it's the first day of trial in a copryight infringement suit brought by "Harry Potter" author J.K. Rowling and her publisher, Warner Bros. against RDR Books, publisher of Steve Vander Ark's 400 page reference book, the Harry Potter Lexicon, based on the online version. Rowling and Warner claim that the Lexicon is a derivative work that infringes Rowling's copyright and interferes with Rowling's plans to write her own Harry Potter encyclopedia.


Stanford Law School's Fair Use Project is defending RDR books, along with outside counsel, New York attorney, David Hammer. In a press release issued on the lawsuit, Anthony Falzone, executive director of the Fair Use Project (and also counsel in the case) stated:


The right to create literary reference guides like the Lexicon has remained nearly unquestioned for hundreds of years. The Lexicon is a valuable resource that helps people better understand and enjoy the Harry Potter books. It's exactly what copyright law should encourage, not suppress.

Dan Slater at WSJ Law Blog is observing the trial; his dispatch from this morning's trial proceedings is posted at the WSJ Law Blog. According to Slater, Dale Cendali, who represents Rowling and Warner, emphasized during her opening that the Lexicon "takes too much and does too little." Cendali's point is that the Lexicon merely copies Rowling's work without any original, value-added content that might qualify as new art. In response, Anthony Falzone asserted in his opening statement that the "the public will lose out if publication of the Lexicon is enjoined."


If you're interested in further analysis of some of the issues in the case, check out this lengthy post by copyright guru William Patry and this post by Mike Madison of Madisonian.net.

Sphere: Related Content
Posted by Carolyn Elefant on April 14, 2008 at 01:48 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Friday, April 11, 2008

Schaeffer's Daily Market Blog


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Friday, April 11, 2008
TiVo (TIVO) Rallies on Federal Appeals Decision
4/11/2008 3:15 PM
Keywords: TIVO

Shares of TV time-shifting guru TiVo (TIVO: sentiment, chart, options) are up more than 1.5% in late trading after the company said that a recent federal appeal against Echostar Holding (DISH) reaffirms the strength of the company's "Time Warp" patent. The ruling denied Echostar's appeal of a lower court's judgment of about $74 million in damages awarded to Tivo.

Technically, the shares are up more than 5% on a year-to-date basis, largely due to the court ruling. However, TIVO hasn't managed to parlay this recent strength into a convincing move above long-term resistance at the 9 level. In fact, the equity has not closed a week above this region since April 2004.

On the sentiment front, investors are trying to call a top to the stock's run higher. TIVO's Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) of 0.48 ranks above 82% of all those taken during the past year, while more than 20% of its float is sold short. Meanwhile, Zacks.com reports that 7 of the 13 analysts following TIVO rate the shares a "hold" or worse. If the equity can break out above resistance at the 9 level, it could prompt a sharp unwinding of this heavy-handed bearish sentiment, thus sending the stock sharply higher.



-Posted by Joseph Hargett (jhargett@sir-inc.com)

20 minutes a day to Nirvanic health


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Br J Sports Med. Published Online First: 10 April 2008. doi:10.1136/bjsm.2008.046243
Copyright © 2008 BMJ Publishing Group Ltd & British Association of Sport and Exercise Medicine
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Paper


Dose response relationship between physical activity and mental health: The Scottish Health Survey
Mark Hamer 1*, Emmanual Stamatakis 1 and Andrew Steptoe 1

1 University College London, United Kingdom



* To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: m.hamer@ucl.ac.uk.

Accepted 15 February 2008


Abstract


Objectives: Regular physical activity is thought to be associated with better mental health, although there is lack of consensus regarding the optimal amount and type of activity to achieve these benefits. We examined the association between mental health and physical activity behaviours among a representative sample of men and women from the Scottish Health Surveys. Methods: Self reported physical activity was measured and the General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-12) was administered in order to obtain information on current mental health. Participants were 19 842 men and women. We calculated risk estimates per category of physical activity sessions per week using logistic regression models. Results: Psychological distress (based on a score of 4 or more on the GHQ-12) was evident in 3200 participants. Any form of daily physical activity was associated with a lower risk of psychological distress after adjustment for age, gender, social economic group, marital status, body mass index, long standing illness, smoking, and survey year (OR = 0.59, 95% CI, 0.52-0.66, P < 0.001). A dose-response relationship was apparent, with moderate reductions in psychological distress with less frequent activity (OR = 0.67, 0.61-0.75). Different types of activities including domestic (housework and gardening), walking, and sports were all independently associated with lower odds of psychological distress, although the strongest effects were observed for sports (OR=0.67, 0.54-0.82). Conclusion: Mental health benefits were observed at a minimal level of at least 20 minutes per week of any physical activity, although a dose-response pattern was demonstrated with greater risk reduction for activity at a higher volume and/or intensity.

Suicide and the internet


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BMJ 2008;336:800-802 (12 April), doi:10.1136/bmj.39525.442674.AD

Feature
Public Health

Lucy Biddle, research fellow1, Jenny Donovan, professor of social medicine1, Keith Hawton, professor of psychiatry2, Navneet Kapur, reader in psychiatry3, David Gunnell, professor of epidemiology1

1 Department of Social Medicine, University of Bristol, Bristol BS8 2PR, 2 Centre for Suicide Research, University of Oxford Department of Psychiatry, Warneford Hospital, Oxford OX3 7JX, 3 Centre for Suicide Prevention, University of Manchester, Manchester M13 9PL

Correspondence to: D Gunnell d.j.gunnell@bristol.ac.uk

Recent reports of suicide by young people have highlighted the possible influence of internet sites. Lucy Biddle and colleagues investigate what a web search is likely to find

Media reporting of suicide and its fictional portrayal on television are known to influence suicidal behaviour, particularly the choice of method used.1 2 3 Indeed, epidemics of suicides using particular methods have occurred after media portrayal of their use.3 4 5 As some methods of suicide are more likely to cause death than others,6 such influences may affect the outcome of suicide attempts and national suicide rates.7

The influence of the internet on suicidal behaviour is less well understood, although it is an increasingly popular source of information, especially for people confronting embarrassing issues such as mental illness, and concerns have been raised about the existence of sites that promote suicide.8 9 Some people report being encouraged to use suicide as a problem solving strategy by suicide web forums8 and cases of cybersuicide—attempted or completed suicide influenced by the internet—have been published in the popular and academic press.9 10 11 12 Suicide sites are also claimed to have facilitated suicide pacts among strangers who have met and then planned their suicide through the internet.11

Despite recent controversy, no one knows how easy it is to find sites relating to suicide on the internet and what sort of information they contain. Recent studies of internet search behaviour suggest that most people use search engines, that queries are broad—mostly composed of a few words and rarely including Boolean operators . . .

PDF version

Worth Testing this system


Will advise and post findings







Monday, April 07, 2008

Worth seeing...


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The Rolling Stones perform "Jumping Jack Flash" in the Martin Scorsese movie, "Shine A Light" live from the Beacon Theater in New York City in the fall of 2006.

Saw it yesterday at the IMAX theater. Definately the best concert firm ever.

Thank you, Marty

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Kids are Quick




TEACHER: Maria, go to the map and find North America .

MARIA: Here it is.

TEACHER: Correct. Now class, who discovered America ?

CLASS: Maria.

____________________________________


TEACHER: John, why are you doing your math multiplication on the floor?

JOHN: You told me to do it without using tables.

__________________________________________


TEACHER: Glenn, how do you spell 'crocodile?'

GLENN: K-R-O-K-O-D-I-A-L'

TEACHER: No, that's wrong

GLENN: Maybe it is wrong, but you asked me how I spell it.

____________________________________________

TEACHER: Donald, what is the chemical formula for water?

DONALD: H I J K L M N O.

TEACHER: What are you talking about?

DONALD: Yesterday you said it's H to O.

__________________________________

TEACHER: Winnie, name one important thing we have today that we didn't have ten years ago.

WINNIE: Me!

__________________________________________

TEACHER: Glen, why do you always get so dirty?

GLEN: Well, I'm a lot closer to the ground than you are.

_______________________________________


TEACHER: Millie, give me a sentence starting with 'I.'

MILLIE: I is...

TEACHER: No, Millie..... Always say, 'I am.'

MILLIE: All right... 'I am the ninth letter of the alphabet.'

_________________________________

TEACHER: George Washington not only chopped down his father's cherry tree, but also admitted it. Now, Louie, do you know why his father didn't punish him?

LOUIS: Because George still had the ax in his hand.

_____________________________________


TEACHER: Now, Simon, tell me frankly, do you say prayers before eating?


SIMON: No sir, I don't have to, my Mom is a good cook.

______________________________


TEACHER: Clyde , your composition on 'My Dog' is exactly the same as your brother's. Did you copy his?

CLYDE : No, it's the same dog.

___________________________________

TEACHER: Harold, what do you call a person who keeps on talking when people are no longer interested?

HAROLD: A teacher

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Bedoins


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A New Workforce is Brewing
By Daniel Casciato

February 26, 2008


Who needs an office when you've got a cafe? A new wave of employees and entrepreneurs are using Wi-Fi to re-invent what it means to go to work.


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Since 1989, Andy Abramson has been working on the road. He was one of the first virtual account managers in the ad world after his agency equipped him with a fax machine and credit card to work from a small desk in his bedroom.

Today, Abramson still works virtually, relying mainly on Wi-Fi networks in caf├ęs, hotel lobbies, airline clubs, and even wine bars, to run his marketing communications agency, Comunicano, "based" in Del Mar, Calif.


================================\


Taking it to the Streets: Run Your Business from the Road
By Daniel Casciato




By relying on Wi-Fi connectivity at RV campgrounds and other hotspots around the country, one entrepreneurial couple from Maine has taken their Internet-based business on the road so they can enjoy everything America has to offer.



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With Wi-Fi hotpots proliferating in cities and towns everywhere, a new class of workers has emerged. Today, more people are running their professional lives from cafes and hotspots as neo-bedouins—named after Arab nomads who wander the desert. Unlike many of their itinerant counterparts, Richard and Angela Hoy of Bangor, Maine, exemplify how a bedouin lifestyle truly should be lived—on the road.

In March 2004, Hoy and his wife were searching for the most economical way for their family of six to visit relatives in Wisconsin and Texas.

"Flying is cumbersome, not to mention expensive, with that many people," said Hoy who discussed several options with his wife, including buying an RV. "Buying an RV made the most sense because at least we'd actually have some equity in something rather than just paying it out to an airline."

The Hoys planned to buy an RV to travel the country when they retired anyway.

"We were itching to get on the road and were about 20 years from retirement," said Hoy. "Everyone we ever talked to about full-time RVing told us that they regret not doing it sooner. You wouldn't believe how many times we heard, 'My wife/husband and I were planning to travel around the country in our RV, but then he or she died.' Or, 'he/she got sick before we could see everything.' We decided that life is too short."

Because their print-on-demand publishing company, Booklocker.com, is Internet-based, the Hoys could hit the road and bring the business along for the ride.

"It didn't really matter where we were," said Hoy. "Our business is entirely online. As long as we have a connection, we could run the business. Even when we were exclusively flying or driving in our van, we always had our computers, cell phones, and assorted business-related gadgets. We've automated many of our business processes, and since it is Web-based, we just need to monitor everything and respond to customer e-mails."

In 1999, Hoy's wife launched a Web site for freelance writers, WritersWeekly.com, after both of their previous jobs with Internet start-ups went belly-up during the dot-com bust in the late 1990s.

"Soon after, we decided to branch out into publishing," said Hoy. "We started publishing e-books and Angie put some of her e-books on a site called Booklocker.com, one of the few places selling e-books at the time. It did really well. Eventually, the owner wanted out of the business and agreed to sell the site to us."

After a year of selling e-books, the Hoys expanded into print-on-demand publishing, manufacturing books at the time a customer orders it. Currently, 1,500 authors use Booklocker.com.

"We provide a turnkey system for people who want to self publish to get a book into the marketplace. We take the manuscript and turn it into a finished book or product," said Hoy.

"But instead of doing what other print-on-demand publishers were doing—publishing any manuscript—we try to find books that are fairly marketable to maintain some quality control with our material."

Knowing that this business model would continue to prosper on the road, the only hurdle remaining for the Hoys was how to educate their children (four at the time, now five). Three of the children were school-aged at the time.

"We obviously couldn't take them out of public school for extended periods," said Hoy. "We started researching options on how to homeschool when we came across Oak Meadow, an accredited institution based in Vermont with an online-based curriculum. It was perfect for us and has worked out well."

With everything finally . . .

==================================
Save the Planet, Work Remotely
By Naomi Graychase

March 18, 2008


Aruba and Avaya team up to provide secure enterprise-quality voice and data applications to remote workers--and reduce greenhouse gases while they're at it.



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Aruba Networks announced today that it has teamed up with Avaya to provide a “green” voice and data access solution for teleworkers. In a press release, Aruba said it was motivated by “the need to reduce CO2 emissions,” as well as market trends that “favor mobile workforces.”

According to Aruba, a telecommuter traveling 45 miles—roughly the distance between San Jos