Monday, November 3, 2014

Through the Keyhole - November

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     NOVEMBER 2014 turnkey-color-logo-white 7
Through the Keyhole

Informative & Interesting... not your everyday company newsletter.
Don't Pardon that Turkey.

The reason why I like Thanksgiving so much is that it is the one Holiday that we can all agree on in America.  That is, it is not centered around any one ethnicity, religion or belief.  We, as Americans, celebrate being thankful with family and friends.  It's that simple.

As the cold weather sets in and we are all reminded that the days are short and the season long, it is time to take pause and be thankful.  For we only have two seasons in Chicago - Winter and Construction.  Last year's winter was so bad I looked into a pothole and saw the Great Wall of China...  Here's to hoping this year will not be anywhere as bad as last where officially we received over 80 inches of the white stuff.

For those of you who are wondering, the chili cookoff results are as follows:
First Place: Jennifer Winikates
Second Place: Lauren Gabler
The winning recipe is posted below.
Congratulations to all for a wonderful cookoff where we had over 50 people in attendance and 12 chilis represented.  Thanks for the participation.

Things we should all be thankful for EVERY DAY:



Indoor Plumbing

Our American Armed Forces


Freedom of Religion

The Internet (sometimes)

Clean Water

Freedom to express yourself as you please

Did you know?

The Wampanoag Indians were the people who taught the Pilgrims how to cultivate the land.

The Pilgrim leader, Governor William Bradford, had organized the first Thanksgiving feast in 1621.

He invited the neighboring Wampanoag Indians to the feast.

The first Thanksgiving celebration lasted three days.

Lobster, rabbit, chicken, fish, squashes, beans, chestnuts, hickory nuts, onions, leeks, dried fruits, maple syrup and honey, radishes, cabbage, carrots, eggs, and goat cheese are thought to have made up the first Thanksgiving feast.

The pilgrims didn't use forks; they ate with spoons, knives, and their fingers.

  • In the US, about 280 million turkeys are sold for the Thanksgiving celebrations.

  • Each year, the average American eats somewhere between 16 - 18 pounds of turkey.

  • Californians are the largest consumers of turkey in the United States.

  • Thanksgiving Day is celebrated on the fourth Thursday in November in the United States.

  • >>>>

    Last month's winner of the "guess the location" game was Tom Davia by guessing The Pumpkin Festival of Highwood. Good guessing as you have won three carved pumpkins from the festival. Contact us for how to arrange delivery... More about the location below.

    And now for a new picture above- Can you guess where it is by looking through the keyhole? "This "diamond" of a break is the largest one in the world.  People from all over learn how to surf here more than anywhere else.  Eddie would go."

    Correct answers will be given recognition but half the fun is trying to figure it out.  The correct answer will be revealed in the subsequent issue.  Good luck and have fun.

    If you like this newsletter, forward it to someone else or
    sign them up HERE.

    As always, send any items you think are newsworthy, interesting or just plain odd to

    The Great Highwood Pumpkin Festival - Keyhole Answer

    oct 2
    "This event happens every year in this local town. The three day festival brings carvers from all over and helps carve out hope and possibilities for the more than 50,000 individuals impacted by Autism in Illinois."

    Festival Facts

    The festival is held during the month of October with the goal of carving and lighting a pumpkin representing each individual impacted by Autism in Illinois.

    Pet Costume Contest, Light Up the Night Parade, 5K Pumpkin Run, Walk & Kids’ Dash, onsite carving, nightly
    pumpkin wall lighting ceremonies, hay rides, pumpkin bowling, pony rides, petting zoo, carnival rides, kids crafts, live entertainment, pumpkin beer tasting, and seasonal food and beverage vendors galore.

    $2 admission plus $10 unlimited kid activity wrist band

    You go with your family, carve a pumpkin, have a beer, listen to some music, donate to a great cause.

    It's a great fall festival.  Try to make a stop next year.  It's really cool...





    TURNkey IT Launches new CRM on November 1st

    images8FQBBRHM 2It is time to ask for your patience as we begin the next chapter in TURNkey's 19th year of business.  We are changing our internal systems in a BIG way and just like anyone, change does not come easy. 

    Customer relationship management (CRM) is a system for managing a company's interactions with current and future customers.  After agonizing over which way to shift the core software of our business operations, TURNkey has decided to use Microsoft Dynamics CRM.

    The software will be hosted in the cloud (Office 365) and will give TURNkey IT employees and customers a unique system that will enhance business interaction.

    Some of the things we integrated:
    1) Better overall process organization and management
    2) Auto-case creation when email is sent to
    3) Customer facing portal where you can see case progress, case history, log new cases and pay invoices
    4) QuickBooks integration
    5) Case prioritization and faster throughput
    6) Business intelligence with meaningful metrics
    7) Increased efficiency
    8) Project management
    9) SharePoint (the ability to share files in the cloud)

    There is so much to this system it makes my head ache. It may take a few months to get all modules online so I kindly ask your patience as we put in all in motion.  By the time you have received this transmission we should have a few days under our belt. 

    Thanks also to the folks at Penrod software for customizing this monolithic software offering.

    Cheers to a new, sweeping change!

    You SHOULD be concerned about Hackers.


    Fact 1: It's not just big businesses like JPMorgan Chase, Target and Home Depot that get hacked. Small companies suffer from intrusions into their computer systems, too.

    Fact 2: The costs associated with computer and website attacks can run well into the thousands and even millions of dollars for a small company.

    Fact 3: Many small businesses have been attacked — 44%, according to a 2013 survey by the National Small Business Association, an advocacy group. Those companies had costs averaging $8,700.

    Typically, businesses must use a company like TURNkey IT to find the source of the attack and systems have to be purged of harmful software like viruses. When websites are shut down revenue can be lost.

    Making matters worse, if customer data was breached, companies often must pay to notify each person or business affected. In some states, they're encouraged to pay for credit report monitoring for customers, says Matt Donovan, head of technology insurance underwriting for the insurer Hiscox USA.

    Small businesses are particularly vulnerable to attacks because many owners believe they don't have the time and money to invest in software programs or consulting services to make systems more secure.

    "They don't know what they don't know. They don't understand the sophistication of these attacks," Foresman says.

    What can you do?

    Have TURNkey IT come into your network to evaluate computers and websites and suggest ways to protect them.

    Buy insurance to cover financial losses. Premiums can be as low as $1,000 a year for $1 million in coverage.

    Make sure email is secure by using an email provider that has proper security systems (TURNkey customers already do this).

    Avoid having customers' credit card information stolen by using a separate company to process orders. The company should guarantee that its systems are secure.







    Are you loading your dishwasher right?


    Consumer reports bets that you are.  I think that I do it right because my wife is a stickler about this and I really try hard to ensure I don't get in trouble.  After reading this, I think I'm ok.

    I am also one of those guys who washes the dishes before putting them in the dishwasher (not with soap - but I get all of the grime off).  It works for me.

    Consumer reports recommendations:

    1. Large items should be put on the sides and back so that they don't block the spray in the middle.

    2. Don't turn dishes away from that middle spray, and don't let them rest on top of each other.

    3. Put dirtier dishes on the bottom, facedown, so they get the full brunt of the spray.

    4. Place silverware handles down, except knives, to keep them from nesting. I personally don't care about the handles...

    5. Fragile items should go on the top rack.

    6. Don't crowd.

    Life Hacks




    Healthy Fast Food?  No such thing?


    Burger King


    • Salad with chicken, black beans, fajita vegetables, and vinaigrette
    • 600 calories



    The Starbucks website provides a convenient list of 20 original drinks, all of which have fewer than 200 calories. We’ve chosen a few highlights.
    • Hot or iced coffee
    • Approximately zero calories
    • Nonfat iced caramel macchiato
    • 140 calories
    • Soy Tazo chai tea latte
    • 180 calories


  • Taco Bell

  • Funny


    Product of the month - Hoverboard

    This is NOT an outtake from Back to the Future Part II. 
    Remember this?

    The hoverboard just got real. The magic behind the hoverboard lies in its four disc-shaped hover engines. These create a special magnetic field which literally pushes against itself, generating the lift which levitates our board off the ground.

    On Kickstarter today.  Maybe on the driveway tomorrow...

    Endangered Jobs Threatened by Technology

    deer caution 2 2Technology has put a lot of people out of work from travel agents to bank tellers but there may be many more people left out in the cold.  Although I do not believe that all of these jobs will go away, it is interesting to see what some are prognosticating in the not so distant future.

    Here is a list of possible casualties:
    Computers are basically fancy calculators, and the smarter they get about complex decision-making, the more accounting work they’ll be able to do.

    Software is already used to generate crowd scenes in movies. “Software agents will work their way up … to smaller speaking roles, and eventually to fully automated ‘live’ films,” one expert predicted in the Pew study.

    Administrative assistants.
    Siri, or her descendants, will answer phones, schedule appointments and manage the office. The boss might still need a trusted aide to help with delicate workplace situations.

    Bus, train and taxi drivers.
    Automakers are already experimenting with self-driving cars, with the technology likely to arrive in public transportation eventually. What’s not clear is whether passengers will be comfortable if there’s no human at the helm.

    Parking lot attendants.
    Once cars are self-driving, they’ll also be self-parking (although tight lots in places like New York City might keep attendants employed longer than elsewhere).

    Checkout clerks.
    If anybody still shops in stores in 2025, they’ll pay an automated attendant that knows how to package purchases.

    Cops and firefighters.
    "Robocop" wasn’t just a movie. Automated public safety bots make sense for dangerous situations and routine matters such as traffic stops.

    Robots can already vacuum, so mopping a floor can’t be far behind.

    Customer service reps.
    You’ll yearn for that faceless person in Omaha or Bangalore when computers start fielding every complaint.

    A robot called “doc-in-a-box” could help diagnose routine medical problems in rural areas, while other machines will perform surgeries and other procedures. We’ll still need real docs to oversee and manage healthcare decisions.

    Medical technicians.
    Computers will be able to diagnose test results as well as people.

    Personal care aides.
    They may not show empathy, but robots will be able to do many other things needed to care for sick or elderly patients.

    “Predictive coding algorithms” are already able to do much of the legal research lawyers do. Before long, “there will be many thousands of lawyers out of work,” one legal expert told Pew. Don’t all weep at once.

    Garbage collectors.
    Once trucks can drive themselves, watch for robots able to load them with garbage.

    Securities traders.
    Computers already execute about half the trades on exchanges. Flash boys will eventually become flash bots.

    Investment advisors.
    Algorithms will be able to provide investing options for people with typical and even sophisticated financial planning needs.

    Pilots and ship captains.
    Computers already do most of the navigational work, anyway.

    Passport checkers at border control.
    Automated gates could handle most travelers. Live agents would still be needed to address security issues.

    Teachers and librarians.
    Some technologists regard them as “low-level information workers” who do routine work computers could replicate. (Sorry.)

    Ticket clerks at movie theaters.
    Checking tickets and tearing them in half is so 20th-century.

    Software is getting P.D.G. at understanding dialects and linguistic quirks.

    Warehouse workers.
    Smart machines will pack, sort and transport packages, a boon for retailers such as Amazon (AMZN) eager to squeeze every penny of cost from their operations.

    Yard workers.
    Suburbanites will worship the robotic lawnmower.

    If this list seems depressing, keep in mind that an army of new workers will be needed to design, build, test, refine, maintain and dispose of all the robots that will be at our service in the future. So far, robots don’t know how to design themselves.

    Colgate Ad.  Look Closely.




    How well did you do?
    Did you see that in the first picture, there is a phantom hand on the man's shoulder?  How about in number two where the man is missing his right ear? Or in the last one where the woman has 6 digits on her left hand?  Probably not. 

    Food in your teeth is more distracting than not having an ear.  Next time you see someone that needs some help, be kind and point it out.

    Some old, kind of ominous photos...


    The Ford Theater, where Abraham Lincoln was assassinated.


    The original Ronald clown of McDonald's in 1963.


     Abraham Lincoln's funeral procession.


    A Mother and her son watch the mushroom cloud after an atomic test 75 miles away in Las Vegas, 1953.

    Apollo I crew members rehearsing their water landing in 1966.


    Unpacking the head of the Statue of Liberty.  Delivered June 17, 1885.


    The arm and torch of the Statue of Liberty in Madison Square Park, New York.  These portions of the Statue were exhibited to raise funds for the completion of the project.
    7 2

    Windows 10.  What is it?


    Why is it Windows 10? What happened to 9? Making sense of the Windows naming sequence is like solving one of those Mensa “What’s the pattern?” puzzles. So far, we have this: Windows 1, 2, 3, 95, 98, 2000, ME, XP, Vista, 7, 8, 10. OK, whatever.

    Windows 8, as the world now knows, was a superimposed mishmash of two operating systems. There was the touchscreen-friendly TileWorld interface, as I called it. (Microsoft, at various times, called it Modern or Metro; it has officially retired both of those terms and replaced them with nothing.)

    Microsoft believed at the time (2012) that the world was going touchscreen crazy. That, sooner or later, every PC would have a touchscreen.

    It bet wrong. Most computers still don’t have touchscreens. Windows 8 was a massive flop with critics. “Windows 8 is a failure — an awkward mishmash that pulls the user in two directions at once,”

    The start menu is now clearly back and so is the "metro" interface (just in case you are running a touchscreen).  Read More

    Easy Tomato Sauce


    2 Tbsp. olive oil
    1 large onion, finely chopped
    1½ Tbsp. minced garlic
    1 28-oz. can of diced tomatoes
    1 7-oz. can tomato paste
    3 28-oz. cans tomato sauce (Redpack is my favorite brand of canned tomatoes: well-balanced flavor, on sale about every two weeks)
    1 Tbsp. dried basil
    1 Tbso. dried oregano 

    In a large pot on medium-low heat, warm the olive oil. Add onions and garlic, and cook, stirring, until the onions are tranlucent, about 3 minutes.

    Add the tomato paste and diced tomatoes and stir to combine. Add tomato sauce and herbs, stirring so the vegetables and herbs are evenly distributed.

    Increase the heat to bring sauce to a boil. Lower the heat, cover the pot and simmer sauce for about an hour, stirring occasionally.

    Kids Say the Darndest Things...

    A little girl in after-school care once asked me if I wanted to know what she was thinking about. When I said yes, she calmly said, "Dolphins," and walked away. - Ray Altmann

    [My son] asked where my wienie was as I got out of the shower one day. I said, "Well, Mommies have a different kind of wienie than Daddies." So we get to the store later that day and he informs the cashier, "My Mommy has a different kind of wienie." Awesome. --Tiffini 
    Grocery store experience: my kid screamed, "PIRATE!!!" at a man wearing an eye patch. -- Cora
    My 4-year-old son felt the need to warn "old" people they will die ... he told a lady in the grocery, "Old people die ... and you don’t look so good" -- Edna   
    Saying our dinner prayer with the family, my 5-year-old wanted to say the prayer. So being that he wanted to be the big boy, we said sure. He says: God is Great, Beer is Good, and People are Crazy! -- Lena 
    Walking by the wine section of Whole Foods: "Mommy! Look at all this mommy juice! Look! Mommy juice everywhere!" I got more than a few snickers. -- Emily 
    My husband took my 4-year-old son to his uncle's funeral. When they were bringing the casket in or out of somewhere, my son said (pretty loudly), "What's in the box?" Luckily it got a few laughs, but ohhhh that was not one of his finest moments! -- Christina 
    My son pointed at a guy playing basketball, who had a prosthetic leg, and shouted, "Look mom! He's a cyborg!" I dragged him away quickly. He's totally into robots and all that, so it was a huge compliment coming from my son! -- Carissa 
    When I quit smoking, my 5-year-old at the time (she's 23 now) told her kindergarten teacher that she was so proud of me because I quit drugs. -- Erin
    Just a few weeks ago, my son was in the bath and declared, "I just have a kid-sized penis because I'm a kid. Not Daddy, though. He's a grownup, so he has a big penis. Daddy, your penis is THIS big" [said while holding his hands quite a wide distance apart].   -- Dorothy
    ‎My 3-year-old daughter was out with her grandma, and the lady in front of them in line was writing a check without ID and generally being irritating. At the top of her lungs, she sighs and says, "Grandma, this is taking FOREVER. It takes daddy less time to poop and he's in there long enough to play a world of Angry Birds!" -- Jane    


    Cleavage is like the sun. You can look but you cannot stare, unless you are wearing sunglasses...

    Bill Clinton

    The future may contain windowless airplanes


    Would you fly in a windowless plane? It sounds like a claustrophobic nightmare, but it’s not what you think.

    Instead of windows, designers from Technicon Design used flexible screens to cover the walls and ceilings of the cabin in their windowless jet concept. Those screens can display panoramic exterior views in real time using fuselage and wing mounted cameras. Essentially, you can see outside without actually seeing outside.

    "Pepper Spray" Winning Chili20120126-vegan-chili-1
    TURNkey IT’s 2014 Chili Cook Off 1st Place Winning Recipe J

    1 lb Bacon

    1 lb Ground Round

    2 lbs Ground Pork

    2 Green Bell Peppers, diced

    2 Yellow Onions, diced

    1 small can Diced JalapeƱos (not pickled)

    3 Serrano Peppers, diced

    3 Poblano Peppers, diced

    2 Cloves Garlic, minced

    1- ½ Tablespoons Ground Cumin

    2 Tablespoons Tastefully Simple Wahoo Chili Seasoning

    ½ Tablespoon Red Pepper Flakes

    2 Tablespoons Beef Bouillon Granules

    1 28 oz can Crushed Tomatoes

    1 16 oz Can Whole Peeled Tomatoes, drained

    2 16 oz cans Chili Beans (Medium)

    1 Bottle of Beer of your Choice (I used Revolution Anti-Hero IPA)

    6 oz Can Contadina Tomato Paste with Pesto

    1 oz Chili Paste

    1 cup water

    Place bacon in large soup pot and brown.  Remove bacon, leaving grease.  Brown ground round and ground pork in bacon grease.  When nicely browned, transfer to crock pot and add chopped bacon, bell pepper, onion, jalapeƱo peppers, Serrano peppers, Poblano peppers, garlic, cumin, red pepper flakes, Wahoo Chili Mix, bullion, crushed tomatoes, whole peeled tomatoes, beer, tomato paste, chili paste and water.  Cook on low for 7-10 hours. Just before serving, remove the whole tomatoes.  Garnish as desired.

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    Wheeling, Illinois 60090
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