Archive for the ‘Intern Insights’ Category

Fairware Supplier Crush – ETS Express Line

December 6, 2012
ETS water bottles

Ever wonder how your artwork gets printed onto drinkware? I mean really, how do you get a logo on a curved surface?

ETS Express Line, our fabulous drink-ware supplier, takes us on a tour of their production offices with this great video introduction on their exceptional products and in-house screen printing capabilities. It’s like magic.

They’re our supplier crush of the month – we adore them because:

  •  They focus on providing innovative and fashion forward products, which keeps them at the forefront of the drink-ware industry.
  •  Their printing quality is exceptional, we’ve seen some of the most complex logos reproduced with precision on their products.
  •  They have a great team! From JB (our stellar sales rep) to Mike Williams (VP of Sales) to the beloved Leeton Lee (who works tirelessly to ensure global standards are met for quality, safety; social responsibility; supply-chain security; and environmental stewardship, they’re stars.

Ok, now check out how the magic happens… and then call us 1.866.606.3247 or email

Intern Insights: Part 6

September 7, 2010

Wow, the summer flew by! This fact became clear when our summer intern Emily wrapped up her time with us last week. We already miss her. She was truly fantastic.

Thankfully a few days before she left Emily started a Twitter account (@emily_wan) so we can all keep updated on what she’s up to. Emily also promised to drop by for future Salad Club and Fun Friday events. (See you soon Emily!)

In this entry Emily the Intern provides her final insight.

Emily the Intern

A Slice of Fairware: Promoting Change

Contrary to my previous posts, my actual work at Fairware involves more than blogging about cool stuff and productivity tools on the internet. (Although the presentation video below was made with a very cool tool called Prezi)

One of my key projects involved an in-depth analysis into Fairware’s business position to facilitate decision-making. To change up the pace of Intern Insights this week, we present an inside scoop and a slice into the business of Fairware. Click on the image below to view a short presentation.

Intern Insights: Part 5

August 20, 2010

Flickr / comedy_nose

This week Emily the intern shows us how to master Gmail.

Be a Gmail Genius
Remember when Gmail shook up the world of webmail with its near unlimited storage space, collapsed conversation threads and revolutionary email “labels” instead of trying to sort mail into inflexible email folders? In case you are behind on the times, since its launch in 2004, Gmail has developed even more features to keep you productive.

Keyboard Shortcuts
I am an advocate of avoiding use of a mouse. These shortcuts are guaranteed to make answering and organizing emails more efficient.

NOTE: To turn these case-sensitive shortcuts on or off, click Settings, and then pick an option next to Keyboard shortcuts once you’re logged into your account.

g then i Refreshes or returns you back to your inbox
c Composes new email
r Reply
a Reply all
f Forward
l Adds a label to the selected mail conversation
Shift then i Mark as “read”
Shift then u Mark as “unread”

For a full list of shortcuts, click HERE.

Multiple Inboxes
Have multiple addresses feeding into your Gmail? Want to see all your categorized mail in a “dashboard” type view? This function (accessible through Settings in Labs) splits your regular inbox into multiple customizable panes. Each pane can display mail of a particular category, such as starred or a specific label. It can gather all the to do lists you email to yourself, eBay item alert emails or any search category you can imagine. I split my inbox to show all “starred” emails at the top, like a running to do list, so I know which emails to take action on right away.

Gmail Offline
Yes, you read that right. Webmail OFFLINE. The requirement of needing an internet connection to access your email is no longer a crippling factor for Gmail. You can work on replies to email that will be sent off the next time you become connected to the internet again. For times when you need to buckle down and clear off a backlog of email, Gmail Offline will let you turn off your wireless and work in peace, without arrival of new email taking your focus away from the task at hand.

Intern Insights: Part 4

August 5, 2010

YES! Opportunity to post a shark picture taken! (Flickr/hermanusbackpackers)

Emily the intern is back from a month long vacation. “What?!? Interns get vacations?” you’re asking. I know! Geez.

Anyway, Emily’s back at Fairware and well-rested. She has a new intern insight for this week focused on free music on the internet. Read on.

Grooveshark gives itunes a run for its money

If you’ve been relying on YouTube to get your music fix, it is time to start swimming with Grooveshark.

Grooveshark in three words? Sharp. Clean. Impressive.

The music streaming website focus on music is spot on with its ocean-predator namesake. It will no doubt get you groovin’ quickly with its “millions of songs” and savable playlists. And yes – it’s free.

Although free online music streaming sites like Pandora or Slacker have been around for a while, Grooveshark’s interface is much more intuitive and straight to the point. There is no need to search for genre “stations” or spend a lot of time customizing to get to the specific songs you like. The genius of the site is that, you can start playing songs right away, even without registration. It allows detailed search of songs or albums by the same artist. You can drag and drop to reorder songs and modify playlists. iTunes enthusiasts will find the similarity useful.

For the music experience connoisseur, the automatic “radio” option is available, allowing Grooveshark to create a playlist for you based on similarities to music you like.

Although free, Grooveshark is not bogged down with clunky ads asking you to go premium and you barely notice the banner ad on the far right of the music player.

The music database is powered by users uploading their own music on to the online library and allowing other users to stream it.

Share links to your playlists with your friends via email/facebook/twitter with no requirements for them to sign up. You can also create a music widget on your website from your Grooveshark playlist. Additional options for paid premium VIP users can stream for free with the smartphone Grooveshark app, as well as a quick launch desktop version ($3/month).

Drawbacks: Few, if any. The only issue is if Grooveshark will face any legal issues in the near future. Unfortunately, like much of the nifty free content on the internet, if you want your songs offline, it is back to the download route.

Yay sharks! (Flickr / Erik Charlton)

Grooveshark gaives iTunes a run for its mone

Intern Insights: Part 3

July 5, 2010

Flickr / meddygarnet

Time is money – How to get rid of timesuckers and be more productive

Last post we talked about saving money, but let’s face it, nothing is more valuable than your time. With Google at your fingertips (Ctrl+E in Firefox by the way for even quicker access to the quick search box!), it is easy to waste half a day accomplishing nothing online instead of researching a report.

Enter Leechblock, your new best friend against internet procrastination.

Your Leechblock friend will hold you where self-control fails, no matter what your addiction is, be it celebrity gossip on Perez Hilton, political blogs on Politico or “Will it Blend” videos on YouTube. And friends definitely don’t let friends Facebook stalk elementary school crushes for 2 hours.

After you enable this Firefox add-on, you can specify which sites to block and customize when you block them. For example, if your personal poison is going on during work, you can block the site from 9am – 5pm, Mon to Fri, and let loose on weekends. Or you can establish time limits, such as only being allowed on Facebook 10 minutes a day. If you try to access specific sites during the block period, or if you have used up your time limit, Leechblock will prevent you from accessing the site, no matter how many times you futilely refresh the page. Conversely, you can also restrict yourself to task-related sites only. Further customization allows “Lockdowns” for 24 hours or more when it becomes mission critical to avoid internet procrastination at all costs. When it comes to staying on task – Leechblock really means business.

Drawback: For the cheaters, you can workaround the Leechblock by disabling it through Firefox options. But then don’t complain about not having enough time – you deserve the stress of procrastination purgatory! Regrettably, this is only for your Firefox. For highly addictive episodes of True Blood or Glee, I wish you good luck. It takes real willpower to tear away from vampires and show choirs.

Until next time,

Emily the Interm

Intern Insights: Part 2

June 23, 2010

Flickr / kevindooley

Emily the intern is back with more cool stuff on the internet and free tools that can make your life easier. Read on.

Where did all my money go?! Personal finance minus the spreadsheet

For a business major, I am notoriously bad at keeping track of receipts. My bill envelopes at the end of the month are like Kinder chocolate eggs – guaranteed to come with a surprise inside.

The headache ends here. For those Excel-allergic, PayPass flashing, too busy wheeling and dealing to manage your wallet individuals – the solution is Money Strands.

Money Strands

Money Strands is a free personal finance site that makes it easy to enter your expenses. You can also enable it to automatically pull records from your bank, credit card and mortgage accounts, or upload digital bills yourself. If you mostly use credit or debit cards and use online banking, you will avoid the whole mundane process of data entry. Set up filters to automatically categorize your spending into Groceries, Car Repairs, Bills, Vacation and everything in between. Nifty analytic tools show you pie charts as well as cash flow patterns. Not sure where you’re at before splurging on the new iPhone? Check your budget balances and receive text message alerts. The site will also analyze your demographic and compare your spending patterns with people like you. It may or may not make you feel better about your quarter-life/mid-life crisis shopping sprees.

Money saved from not having to purchase software: $44.99 (Intuit Quicken)

More time to spend doing fun things instead of entering expenses and juggling budgets at the end of the month? Priceless!

Drawback: Uploading financial information on a third party website makes some people nervous. Many banks are launching their own apps within their online banking sites. Integration with smartphones is still buggy, so entering expenses on the go can still be improved.

For something a little more fun, but equally wallet-friendly, check out Groupon

Groupon has been big in the States for a while and recently hopped over to Canada. Use the power of the crowd to get you deals like $20 for $40 of seafood at A Kettle of Fish or half price annual membership to your favorite gym. Deal-hunting just got a lot savvier.

Until next time,

Emily the Intern

Intern Insights: Part 1

June 14, 2010

Meet Emily, Faiware’s first intern. Never having had an intern, we expected coffee runs, data entry, and mad photocopying and filing skills. It turns out Emily doesn’t do any of these things. Instead we’ve found Emily has a lot of opinions and ideas, and we’ve found many of these really useful. So we’re giving her a weekly post on the Fairware blog. She’s bringing us a seven part series on cool stuff on the internet and free tools that can make your life easier. We’re all going to learn something, so stay tuned.

This week, a lesson in keeping your electronic files and internet finds organized.

Ready, Set, Sync! Never be without your files again.

USB drives beware – having files on the go has a whole new meaning.


Evernote is a dream for anyone who has a million ideas and to do lists going at once. Tired of digging through millions of Word documents? Can’t find that action item written down in your paper notebook? Evernote is like an electronic portfolio/clipboard that allows you to pull all the bits and pieces of your multitasking life together. Create tags and search all your notes at once. Clip and upload everything from documents, handwritten to do lists to cool stuff and media online. The best thing about Evernote is that it requires no software, and is completely online-based, so you can always access your notes, even on your smartphone. And it’s free!


Dropbox is like having your own network and online backup. Forget setting up FTP folders or using file upload sites with links that expire – create your own Dropbox. Drag and drop files from your desktop into the Dropbox folder and have them instantly synced and accessible anywhere online. You can access the files on your smartphone and share them with your contacts. Laptop stolen? Virus? No problem, because Dropbox has your files, photos and everything else backed up.


For both these apps, you’re out of luck if outside the internet grid (this is where USB drives come in handy again).

Until next time,
Emily the Intern

About the Intern:

BCom from UBC. Experience with conference and event planning (and ordering swag!). Strong believer in combining business with social responsibility and a real world idealist. On weekends, volunteers and leads outdoor programs for youth with Scouts Canada. Loves travelling, quirky movies, TED talks, finding what is up-and-coming in the city and people who frequently burst into song. Needless to say – is thrilled to be working with the fantastic Fairware team this summer.

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