About Mary Hester

Ms. Hester is the CEO of LAN Systems, which provides IT solutions in the Greater Metro Atlanta Area. You can contact Mary at mary@lansystems.com">

Why do engineers confuse Halloween and Christmas?

This puzzle/joke has exploded this year.  I have seen it on Twitter, Facebook and many blogs.  Could it mean that engineering is really catching hold in Social Media circles?  I hope so! The answer:  Because Oct 31 = Dec 25 or octal (base 8) 31 = decimal (base 10) 25 It is a mathematical equation for number systems in base 8 and base 10.  We are most familiar with base 10 or decimal because we use it all the time. The penny, dime, dollar or 1, 10, 100 system.  Octal is not used very often, but it is built on the same principle where 8 is the base.  We use 8 digits (0-7) in octal, just like we use 10 digits (0-9) in decimal. Here's the conversion: 25 decimal is  8x3 (24) plus 1 or octal 31.  It takes a little practice but once you get it - you'll always have it - just like riding a bike. Here's a link to a converter! Need help?  Have a good math puzzle?  Leave a comment or … [Read more...]

Do women like technology?

Of course they do!  Why don't more women work in technology?  It's complicated. As a women engineer (electrical), I ponder this question quite often. I just finished reading an article "Women Engineers Trace Tech Gender Gap to Childhood" that has some good points.  Being the oldest sister of three brothers and the mother of two daughters (one is an engineer), I have a theory based on my many hours of observation. First, engineering and technical studies are designed for concentration not discussion. As a child, learning the laws of physics requires trial and error and lots of concentration. Especially with girls, it is important to discuss what is happening and why.  My girls never spent much time throwing a ball. In contrast, my brothers spent hours pitching a baseball to each other.  They pitched just about every day, whatever the weather.  They did this mostly without … [Read more...]

LAN Systems CEO Among Finalists for WIT Women of the Year

October 8 – Women in Technology (WIT) yesterday announced the nine finalists for its 2014 WIT Women of the Year in Technology Awards. Mary Hester, CEO, was selected as one of the top three nominees in the Small/Emerging Organization category. Mary Hester is the CEO of LAN Systems which provides IT solutions in the Greater Metro Atlanta Area. LAN Systems is dedicated to providing business technology that makes businesses more competitive and solutions that work for people. Mary brings extensive experience managing a support and service group renowned for its “Best in the Industry” rating and standards. She is an expert in customer loyalty and retention. She has designed and delivered numerous training courses and workshops on a variety of topics. Mary is an Electrical Engineer that believes her greatest strength is her ability to connect with people and understand their unique … [Read more...]

CryptoLocker – Finally some good news

  CryptoLocker has been causing havoc with computer users across the globe.  It infects your computer, encrypts your files and then demands money to unlock them. Paying the ransom is never recommended, but many paid because they had no way to restore their irreplaceable files. Of course, the best defense is a good backup.  Have to say it again - you should have a good offline, offsite backup. (See the next article for an easy-to-implement backup strategy.) It is the best defense for all types of disasters. But if you didn't have a backup you either paid the ransom or suffered without your files. Today, there is hope.  The incredibly smart and dedicated folks at FireEye and FoxIT have a decryption tool. The tool runs at the DOS prompt, so you have to have some understanding of syntax to execute.  We downloaded the tool and successfully unencrypted an entire filesystem that … [Read more...]

Best Places to Work LAN Systems named #3

2014 Best Places to Work No. 3 Small employer in Atlanta is LAN Systems in the Atlanta Business Chronicle's  Sep 12, 2014   Allison Shirreffs, Contributing Writer, Atlanta Business Chronicle Every two weeks, LAN Systems CEO Mary Hester hands out payroll checks to her employees, even though almost everybody has direct deposit. The reason? It’s a chance to say, “Thank you,” she said. Prior to this year, Hester had considered entering Atlanta Business Chronicle’s Best Places To Work contest, but hadn’t pulled the trigger. This year she did, and doing so paid off: LAN Systems finished third in the small employer category. LAN Systems provides information technology services for small to midsized businesses, and helps them choose the best services to fuel growth — including setting up cloud-based systems for ... Read full article.   … [Read more...]