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. . . But No Minnie: Don't waste any more time and money waiting to have your computing questions answered by tech support. Instead, try a service from Computer Pundits Corp. (CPC) in Bloomington, Minnesota, called Goofyguys.com. The service lets anyone-especially companies lacking large internal IT staffs-the opportunity to get free, expert computing advice online. The site offers a searchable FAQ tech database and allows users to submit their questions online to be answered by one of the Goofyguys technical experts. The service covers multiple hardware and software platforms, including Unix, Windows NT, Novell networks, Microsoft BackOffice, Exchange and Proxy Server. For details, visit www.goofyguys.comor call (888) 786-3487.
One-Stop Shop: A variety of companies now offer e-commerce services, and one to check out is Wells Fargo. The financial services giant has teamed up with e-commerce and payment-services company First Data Corp. in Atlanta to offer an e-commerce solution for small and midsized businesses called One-Stop eStore. Here's how it works: Wells Fargo provides the tools businesses need to create virtual storefronts-from Web design to payment processing and traffic building. The One-Stop eStore is based on a solutions platform developed by First Data and privately branded by Wells Fargo. The cost to get a Web site up and running starts at $45 per month. For more information, call (800) 262-2893.
Taxing Taxes: Stop worrying about how much sales tax to charge at your Web site: Vertex Inc. in Berwyn, Pennsylvania, sells a software product, eQuantum for Sales and Use Tax, that calculates taxes on e-commerce transactions. The system accepts data from a host application-via Java Objects or XML documents-and then provides a sales tax quote and/or final tax amount to the online customer. The system also figures out taxing jurisdictions; tax rates; and all customer-, product- or jurisdiction-based exceptions. The amount is then sent back to the host application and recorded in a database for tax-reporting purposes. Base price for the system starts at less than $10,000. For details, visit www.vertexinc.com, which also includes a special section on taxes and e-commerce.
Melissa Campanelli is a technology writer in Brooklyn, New York, who has covered technology for Mobile Computing & Communications and Sales & Marketing Management magazines. You can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.