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Notes from An Event Apart Boston 2012 I had a great time at An Event Apart Boston, 2012. Ill post some photos soon. The conference avoided deep dives into code in favor of showing WHY you would do reactive design. As Eric Meyer said "My...

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Judging the CT Student Innovation Exposition (E-Commerce)... Want to know what the next 10 years will look like? Ask a high school student. Their creativity isnt limited by their knowledge of what we currently call technological limitations. They have a vision of...

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The Value of Feeling Appreciated as an Employee in... Whether you’re a new employee or the vice president of the company, everyone wants to feel valued, even appreciated, in the workplace. Not only does it improve morale and make the workplace a more pleasant...

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The difference between classic and motion tweens in... Here it is: If you're used to doing things "the cs3 way" then you can continue to do so with the classic tween tool. It works the same way as you remember, using key frames as normal, but you cannot...

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PHP: If (equal to AND not equal) - eliminate form spam... Just learned a great function of PHP thats already made my forms a lot better. A while back I wrote an article about eliminating form spam without captchas by using css to hide a text input box for bots...

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Worst Host Ive ever encountered: Yahoo Small Business

Category : General Web Info, Technology

Yahoo Small Business – If you have a single web minded person in your company do them a favor and DO NOT use yahoo small business. Their backend panel is an absolute mess.

I’m pretty savy with DNS, .htacess, and server side redirects; some of the people working in the tech center trying to guide me through their backend are definitely not.

I’ve got two domains, one is on Yahoo as a merchant account, and the other is on go daddy. We want to mask forward the godaddy account to yahoo. No problem. The problem starts when I want to forward the yahoo url to the same name as the account on go daddy. With another mask forward we create an infinity loop. No good.

My next thought was to mask forward godaddy to yahoo and create a .htaccess file for both URLS to be forwarded to a directory in the root folder say /siteName/. BUT yahoo does not support .htaccess. I asked about IS redirects, but was told this is not a good solution as it does not always work.

The third solution I came up with was to transfer the domain to yahoo and work the files and DNS from there. Not that I thought this would help, as anything I can do from one registrar I ought to be able to do on the next with the right DNS/cname/aname settings. NO DICE! Yahoo cannot accept incoming transfer domains until later this year.

So in closing, wtf do I do to get the client’s website displaying correctly with the proper url in the address bar? The only solution left it to cancel the yahoo account and start again on a new server. This has got to be the worst option available as it means data entry, a second host account, and a waste of my client’s money due to yahoos inability to support effective DNS management.

If anyone has a solution to this issue – I am all ears.
Thank you in advance.

Effective CEO blogging is what counts

Category : SEO / SEM, Technology

I was asked this the other day. My immediate response was something a kin to “everyone should blog if they have something interesting and relevant to say”. Seth Godin makes a pretty good case against CEO blogging saying

Here’s the problem. Blogs work when they are based on:
Candor
Urgency
Timeliness
Pithiness and
Controversy
(maybe Utility if you want six).

Does this sound like a CEO to you?

Short and sweet, folks: If you can’t be at least four of the five things listed above, please don’t bother. People have a choice (4.5 million choices, in fact) and nobody is going to read your blog, link to your blog or quote your blog unless there’s something in it for them.

Save the fluff for the annual report.

I don’t think its that cut and dry. It depends on your expectations and the goals you set out to accomplish by writing the blog. If you wanted a huge audience to raise brand awareness then that’s going to be a very different blog then one written to get the attention of a niche provider market.

This is the new Guttenberg Press for anyone who wants to use it. Never before has the top of the company been able to communicate in a two way conversation with everyone else involved in the co-creation process. A confident CEO can and should regard a blog as an opportunity akin to television, but with the benefit of backtalk. That backtalk can be scanned, summarized and focused by staff, if need be. Staff writers could even write most of the content leaving only monthly or weekly posts for the ceo.

This doesn’t mean that they plug only their own products or services. A blog should not be created if the main intended purpose is becoming an advertisement. People won’t subscribe to it and you’ll be wasting your time, but who better than the ceo to give guidance on new technology issues or new brand strategy? Nobody. That’s who.

Praise for IKEA and a review of page turning flash software

Category : General Web Info, Social, Technology

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In the process of researching another article I stumbled on a very clean and functional page turning script being used by IKEA to show their mammoth catalog. Wow! A clean interface and new functionality? ZMags, the company that provides the script and backend content controls, did an amazing job with this.

It provides a whole list of new functionality in flash applications. You can search the zine’s content, zoom in on pages with a really interesting real-time transition, and see thumbnail previews of the previous, next, or any of the preview images on the bottom. It’s a super easy interface for large catalogs with lots of scanable content.

I called to enquire about pricing and found it to be pretty reasonable, given the amount of backend support and tracking that’s built into the application. I don’t think flash can do everything that analytics can just yet, but they boasted as if it was pretty close.

Other notable mentions for clean design include JFK Magazine: a euro GQ, which has a really interesting page flip script that’s second to none at showing high res images. The zoom and pan feature is not as intuitive as maybe I’d like, but extra functionality is for me a welcome problem to overcome.

Both of the above scripts are sold as license agreements; you don’t own the script and so you can’t develop off them or use them once your contract with whoever expires. The alternative is to buy the scripts and develop the functionality yourself. PageFlip Developed by 2advanced, a sick nasty studio in their own right, is an economical package (under $30) and has everything you need to get started working with the raw component objects in a .fla file. A working knowledge of action script is all you really need as there is a thick help file, lots of commented code, and tons of examples of it working to pull apart.