Communication 101

Hot Disks

New and Notable Software

  • Update AnyWare: Software programs that have been on your hard drive for a while can be out of date. Similarly, drivers (the programs that help run the hardware attached to your machine) can also get outmoded. That's why there are programs like Update AnyWare from GreenTree Technologies. Update AnyWare will automatically detect out-of-date software or drivers on a PC by profiling the PC to see what's installed and then comparing those versions to the most current versions stored on its database. If updates are available, Update AnyWare lists products or patches that can be downloaded from the Web. Users can also receive automatic e-mail notification of new software updates as soon as they're available. Update AnyWare is available in stores or via It costs $29.95 and requires a $19.95 annual renewal fee. Call (800) 257-7708 for more information.
  • Virtual Operator: Voice-recognition technology has made great strides in the past few years. See for yourself by checking out the Virtual Operator from Registry Magic, which works in conjunction with your company's telephone system. This call-routing system understands natural speech and routes calls to the correct extensions simply by hearing phrases such as "I'd like to speak to the sales department, please," or "Can you connect me to Mr. Smith?" That means your customers don't have to get lost in the labyrinth of voice mail. The virtual operator handles up to 12 calls at one time; it also works within your organization, letting users say the name of the person they wish to speak with rather than dialing the extension. For more information, call (888) RMAGIC-8 or visit
  • Area Code Update: If you hadn't noticed, area codes around the country are changing virtually every day. For those of you who have experienced the dreaded "the area code you have dialed has been changed" message, you'll appreciate this program from Information Technology Group. Designed to help manage and maintain accurate records within large databases, Area Code Update scans and replaces outdated North American area codes with accurate ones. There are 45 area code changes scheduled this year alone; with Area Code Update, you'll save the time it takes to update your records and the hassle of redialing out-of-date numbers. A single-user version costs $179; call (877) 228-3283 or visit for more information.

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This article was originally published in the August 1998 print edition of Entrepreneur with the headline: Communication 101.

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