(405) 523-2162

Joshua S. Williams

United Systems has been serving the Oklahoma City area since 1984, providing IT Support such as technical helpdesk support, computer support, and consulting to small and medium-sized businesses.

Joshua joined United Systems in 2011 as an account manager, serving select education and enterprise customers in Oklahoma and Arkansas. A self-described "recovering engineer," he enjoys applying a deep understanding of both technical and business problems to create unique and powerful solutions for his customers.

Co-Managed Services Can Help Build a Better Business

Co-Managed Services Can Help Build a Better Business

Managed IT
Every business decision is made based on available capital. IT professionals--the good ones--can cost a lot of money, prompting many organizations to cut costs by simply going without hiring IT professionals. This presents another assortment of problems, as there is an inherent risk associated with not taking proper care of your technology assets. It also makes technology deployment considerably more difficult, if not impossible.

One-way organizations can take advantage of IT services without having a full-fledged IT department is through a managed service provider, or MSP. MSPs provide many services for a fraction of the cost of an internal IT department, including monitoring and maintaining your network and computing infrastructure. Furthermore, you can trust that they will adhere to industry best practices, as when you succeed, they succeed as well. Through preventative care, MSPs help your business find value in one of the most costly parts of operation: your IT.

Co-Managed IT
Even if your business would rather have an internal IT department, you can still benefit greatly from outsourcing at least a portion of their responsibilities to a MSP. This is called co-managed IT, where your business still maintains an on-site IT staff while outsourcing the remainder of its responsibilities to a managed service provider. This solves a number of issues related to having an on-site IT department.

For example, the IT department of a small business is likely to have issues keeping up with maintenance, helping those in need of assistance, and implementing major projects. There’s just not enough time in the day to make all of this happen regularly. Through co-managed IT, you can outsource specific roles to United Systems to ensure it all goes off without a hitch. The end result is a more focused in-house team that can handle their primary responsibilities while the rest is handled by trusted IT experts. To learn more, reach out to us at (405) 523-2162.

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Tip of the Week: Easy to Remember Tricks for Windows 10

Tip of the Week: Easy to Remember Tricks for Windows 10

Restoring Closed Tabs
Accidentally closing a tab can be annoying--especially if you can’t remember how you got there. Thankfully, there is a shortcut you can use to get back to where you were. This shortcut is Ctrl + Shift + T, which will reopen a recently closed tab.

Close a Window or Tab
If you are ready to close your window or tab, you can use the keyboard shortcut Ctrl + W to close it quickly.

Spacebar Scroll
If you don’t want to use your mouse wheel to scroll down a page, you can instead use the spacebar. If you hold down the Shift key and tap Space, your screen will jump down in full-screen increments rather than the slow crawl from just the arrow key.

Mousewheel Functions
You can use your mouse scroll wheel to perform various tasks. One of them involves quickly opening a link in a new tab. You can do this by clicking on it with the mouse scroll wheel (yes, there is a button under it). This saves you the trouble of going through multiple clicks with your mouse.

What are your favorite computer tips and tricks? Now’s your chance to share them in the comments.

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OLED Is Changing the Way We Look at Things

OLED Is Changing the Way We Look at Things

What is OLED?
OLED stands for Organic Light Emitting Diodes, which is similar to normal LED technology. Light emitting diodes, or LED, are a semiconducting light source that produces light through moving electrons into defined spots with a screen’s emissive layer. It basically transforms electricity into light. OLED uses practically the same concept, but rather than involving individual LED bulbs lighting up, OLED uses light emitting films. This gives the OLED display the ability to produce higher contrast images. In other words, the lights are lighter and the darks are darker. This is due to the makeup of the OLED film (hydrocarbon chains rather than semiconductors), which also means that they consume less energy (electricity).

How Does It Work
An OLED panel contains several layers. The substrate layer acts as a structural framework; the anode, a film that draws electrons; the cathode, a film that provides the electrons; and the organic layer between them. The organic layer also contains two layers: the conducting layer that has holes, and the emissive layer where light is produced.

Types of OLED
The various types of OLED displays are used by different types of devices. Passive-matrix OLED has a slower refresh rate, which results in them being used on devices that have more static images. Active-matrix OLED devices have a faster refresh rate, making them ideal for devices like televisions, smartphones, and other displays that are always changing.

What are the Benefits?
OLEDs operate as both a light source and color simultaneously, which can create several benefits over your standard LED displays. Here are just a few of them:

  • Reduced power consumption: An OLED display doesn’t need any of the electronics used to power the back light that were needed for traditional LED displays. Therefore, it uses less power.
  • Improved picture quality: OLED uses color filters that can produce warmer colors and darker blacks. Additionally, OLED displays don’t have shutter arrays, meaning they can be produced with a higher refresh rate, as well as better viewing angles.
  • Lightweight durability: Since OLED displays don’t have the backlight and shutter array technology found in ordinary LED displays, OLED devices are generally much lighter and flexible. A new innovation called inkjet-based printable OLED displays can reduce the nitrogen volume in a display and enhance the thermal uniformity of the display. This enables manufacturers to make more malleable displays, like wallpaper-like screens.
  • Lower costs: Like any kind of technology, the more it’s used, the less costly it becomes to make. This drives down prices and makes them more affordable for everyone.

OLED displays are showing up all over the place, and they are only going to grow in popularity. How can your business benefit from this new technology? Find out by giving us a call at (405) 523-2162.

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Investigating the Value of Managed IT Services

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Amazon’s Alexa Is Entering the Workplace

Amazon’s Alexa Is Entering the Workplace

Every business executive wants an office assistant that can help with the everyday “grunt work.” These office assistants handle a lot of work that the busy business owner simply doesn’t have time for. Unfortunately, small businesses are working with a limited budget, making the odds of affording extra help slim to none. Can Amazon’s Alexa offer an alternative to this dilemma?

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Your Business Needs To Manage Mobile Devices For The Sake Of Its Security

Your Business Needs To Manage Mobile Devices For The Sake Of Its Security

Businesses can benefit from the use of personal mobile devices in the workplace, yet there are also potential dangers in allowing mobile and Internet of Things devices to access your network. In order to reduce these dangers, you need to put some limits and guidelines on the use of such devices in the workplace.

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Tip of the Week: 6 PC Troubleshooting Guidelines that Every User Should Know

Tip of the Week: 6 PC Troubleshooting Guidelines that Every User Should Know

When was the last time that you ran into a problem that was easily solvable, simply by restarting your computer or unplugging a device from the wall, then plugging it back in? Often times, simple troubleshooting tactics can be enough to resolve a problem, but more often than not, there are issues that can’t be easily resolved. It’s these ones that hold businesses back, and we’re here to help.

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These guidelines are quite helpful for users of computer systems and enable them to get rid from occurred problems. People earn mo... Read More
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Outsource Your IT to the Pros and Stop Doing IT the Hard Way

Outsource Your IT to the Pros and Stop Doing IT the Hard Way

How often does your technology experience trouble? If your business is constantly dealing with technical hiccups, your assets that are meant to be a boon to your organization, can quickly become a nuisance that holds you back. How can you take better care of your technology, and use it to usher in a new era of productivity?

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This Breakthrough By MIT Will Propel Artificial Intelligence to New Heights

This Breakthrough By MIT Will Propel Artificial Intelligence to New Heights

No security solution is perfect. Each one has its own set of pros and cons. For example, relying completely on an automated solution is thorough, but it will flag plenty of threats that aren’t really threats (aka, false positives). Meanwhile, a human overseeing security is great for spotting worrisome trends, but a human can’t possibly catch every single attack. With this dynamic in mind, a team of researchers from MIT has successfully blended the two.


The team, hailing from MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, developed a security platform combining the strength of human involvement with the effectiveness of artificial intelligence. Given the name A.I.², this new platform is capable of detecting 85 percent of incoming attacks while reducing reported false positives by 20 percent.

How A.I.² combines AI and human involvement is actually quite genius. To begin, the “untrained” machine reports a sample set of results to a human expert. These results are informed by machine learning and are checked against the 200 most important problems. The human expert then checks over and corrects the machine’s work, with the intention of finding mistakes and false positives. Subsequently, the human-checked results are inputted to A.I.², the machine learns, and the next set of tests will have fewer errors. This process is then repeated with the security platform adapting each time to look for what its human teacher looks for.

In a paper presented at the IEEE International Conference on Big Data Security, research scientist Kalyan Veeramachianeni summarized, "You can think about the system as a virtual analyst. It continuously generates new models that it can refine in as little as a few hours, meaning it can improve its detection rates significantly and rapidly."

Of course, the precedent of effectiveness set here by combining human expertise and oversight with A.I. has far-reaching ramifications for other A.I. initiatives currently in development; initiatives that have both humanity’s best and worst interests in mind. Although, for now, those of us in the IT world are celebrating this A.I.-enabled technology for being one giant leap forward in security analysis accuracy.

It’s important to keep in mind that a platform like A.I.² is still years away from being available to the average business. Therefore, we recommend that you stay on top of your network security by following best practices, which combines automated software solutions and human vigilance in order to combat the latest threats. United Systems is standing by to assist you with all of your company’s network security needs. To equip your business with the most comprehensive IT security solutions on the market, call us today at (405) 523-2162.

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How a Phishing Scam Works and What You Can Do to Protect Yourself

b2ap3_thumbnail_social_engineering_magnet_400.jpgMost hacking attacks are the result of a flaw or vulnerability found within the code of a program or operating system, but we rarely take into account the ones that don’t. Hackers often take advantage of the human side of hacking as well, a process known as “social engineering.” This is usually the act of conning users into handing over personal information of their own free will, and it’s surprisingly effective.

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Tip of the Week: How to Prevent Your Mobile Data from Leaking Away

b2ap3_thumbnail_mobile_data_eats_money_400.jpgWith more businesses moving toward Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) than ever before, the workforce grows more mobile by the day. These workers generally need a network connection in order to access important data and applications that are crucial to their day-to-day responsibilities. One way to do this is to use your service provider’s mobile data plan, but this can be both expensive and draining when used excessively.

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The Key Difference Between In-House and Hosted VoIP Solutions

b2ap3_thumbnail_voip_for_business_400.jpgCommunications solutions are vital to the functionality of your organization. Among several other necessities, your telephony solution stands head and shoulders above the rest as one of the most important. Are you still using a legacy phone system? If so, you should consider switching to a VoIP system.

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Disaster Recovery and Why it Matters to Oklahoma Businesses

3492566759 23f1ca345cWhen you mention the term 'disaster recovery,' most people think about the big ground-shattering events like tornados, fires, floods, ice storms, etc. In fact, the Washington Post reported in April that Oklahoma has been more susceptible to weather related calamities than any other state in recent years. While these natural events are certainly disasters and devastating in their own right, smaller things can constitute as a disaster for your business, and they aren't seasonal.

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5 Tips for Saving Money on your IT

Saving a little on your technology can go a long ways, but cutting too many corners can lead to additional problems and expensive downtime. Here are a few ways you can cut costs without creating long term issues.

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Slow Computer? Increase your memory to boost computer Speeds

Sometimes when your workstation feels bogged down, a relatively cheap and simply hardware update can make a huge difference in performance. Adding more RAM (Random Access Memory, often just referred to as memory) can be a game changer for your bogged down PC.

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What is your Identity Worth to You?

Your identity has quite a lot of value, especially in the wrong hands. Security firm ZoneAlarm put together some numbers in 2011 concerning identity fraud, and it even shocked us. Let's talk about a few of these statistics and what it means.

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Let's Talk Tablets

Tablets are definitely becoming a staple in the consumer electronics world. For the longest time, the tablet PC was an expensive, clunky device that just didn't wow consumers. Some businesses had adopted tablets back in the day, but they were difficult to use, hard to support, and they simply didn't perform for the price tag. However, like many consumer electronics, Apple reinvigorated the tablet market with the original iPad, and now it would seem tablets are here to stay. The question is, are they right for businesses?

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How Safe is Your Email?

 

Email is (and has been) a prime method of communication for businesses of all sizes. With email comes a whole slew of issues that are essentially synonymous with the technology; spam, information overload, phishing, and information privacy. Even Oklahoma small businesses that only do business locally are at risk of these issues. Personal email accounts are equally at risk. Employing proper precautions and practices whenever communicating via email is very important to prevent the risk of security compromises, monetary loss, and even legality issues.

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