Travel agents, tourism board representatives, airline executives, meeting planners and other travel industry professionals will be gathering in Newport Beach, Calif., early next year to discuss green travel strategies. The Green Travel Summit, to be held March 23-24, offers discussions on how to merge environmental initiatives with efficient business.

Among other topics, the two-day event will address principles and priorities required for a green business strategy, green meeting guidelines, and potential risks involved with promoting green practices.

An early registration fee of $650 is available for companies that sign on before the end of the year. The fee rises to $775 with a Feb. 20 deadline or to $895 after the date, and includes two days of sessions, a networking reception, two breakfasts and a luncheon.

To register and to get more information, go to

IT Support

IBM and Persystent recently launched new products geared for smaller businesses. While the IBM Lotus Foundations Start is designed to replace onsite IT support teams, Persystent Edge offers automatic scans of potential computer problems every time a system boots up.

IBM Lotus Foundations is a self-configuring system that uses integrated disk backup technology to protect company without the need for routine maintenance. The plug-and-play system combines software and hardware to facilitate the setup process. Built around a 100 megabyte Linux kernel, it automatically downloads the latest operating system whenever a new one is available, while automatic backups are performed every 15 minutes.

For a free, 30-day trial, go here.

Persystent Edge is designed for companies with 50-500 PC uses and is installed through a compact configuration. The tool complements the Persystent Suite, a system that fixes problems in a PC operating systems and applications every time a computer is switched on -- even if a virus has already caused damages.

Pricing starts at $4995. Go here for more information.


Office Depot's charitable foundation is teaming up with SCORE, a Washington-based entrepreneurship resource group, to offer free reprints of Business Planning Tools for Nonprofits, a booklet that outlines key strategies for businesses in the nonprofit sector.

The foundation will also sponsor the Disaster Prep and Relief section on SCORE's website that includes tips on how to insure your business, avert a disaster, protect your data, and reach out to the SBA, U.S. Chamber, the IRS and FEMA for help.