Friday, May 31, 2013

How Social Media Has Changed the Face of Business


Businesses have always used many different ways to get their messages out to the general public. In the past, companies had to rely on marketing methods like television, radio and print ads. In today's world, social media has revolutionized the way businesses interact with their customers. Social media has changed the face of business and it continues to alter the way companies engage.

Direct Contact
One way that social media has changed business is by providing a more direct way for customers to get in contact. In the past, it was basically a one-way means of communication. Companies would send out their messages and then hope that people listened to them. Now, with social media, customers can actually respond back to companies. When a message is sent out, they can respond directly to the company easily through their social media profiles. This makes it a two-way conversation between marketer and customer.

Cut Down on Costs
One of the advantages of using social media for business is that it cuts down on costs. Instead of having to pay large sums of money to get a message out, the company could potentially send a message out for free through social media. Once the social media profile has many contacts associated with it, it can reach a large number of people without any investment. While it does take some time to build up a large number of friends or followers, once the numbers are up there, it can be a very powerful tool for a business to use.

Building Relationships
Another way that a company can benefit from social media marketing is that it helps them build relationships. In the past, it was difficult for companies to really get to know their customers and build relationships with them. This would have been the case for a company such as
Zivelo Kiosks. With the help of social media, they can stay in constant contact with their customers. This helps create some brand loyalty so that customers will keep coming back when they need what the company has to offer.

Content
Because of the influence of social media, more companies are the focus on creating unique content that can be shared. For example, they may put an emphasis on creating quality videos that are likely to go viral. They may write content for blogs or offer free promotions to attract attention. The way that they market has changed because of the ability to share content through social media outlets.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Spam Battle Slows Down Entire Internet


A major spamming battle between rival websites has reduced some of the internet and email services across the world to a crawl.

This so called battle between the anti spamming websites and the web hosting company has resulted in 300gb of data a second being released across the internet.

Among some of the sites was the video streaming service Netflix but, with just a mere 50gb of data enough to crash a banks servers, there were fears that this problem could escalate and become much bigger than first though.

An experienced IT security consultant said that the attackers were beginning to threaten the crucial domain name system which holds up the whole internet. He then added if they are able to direct too much traffic through the DNS then it could bring down the whole internet meaning losses for everyone.

The target of the week long attach is Spamhaus, it is a not-for-profit organisation based in London and Geneva. It says that it is retaliation for blacklisting Dutch company, Cyberbunker, which is based in a former NATO bunker.

Spamhaus has claimed that the attack that has been widely acknowledged as the largest of its type ever seen, it was the work of an alliance of hackivists and cyber criminals.

On Tuesday experts had warned that the assault could go as far as to impact on banking and personal email accounts, Spamhaus keeps a database of web servers which are known to be used for malicious purposes, such as sending spam mail for bogus products and earlier this month they added Cyberbunker.

They have said that Cyberbunker has launched a huge ‘denial of service’ (DDoS) attack in relation by flooding its servers with internet traffic. This is like jamming a mailbox with hundreds of letters at the same time, or getting a thousand texts all at the same time your phone will crash because it cannot cope like the internet will eventually crash if it carries on.

Author Bio:
Jake currently writes for Dial Up 247, an internet company that provides pay as you go dial up.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Internet Options


The growth of technology can be a difficult thing to follow, particularly the internet as it is changing and advancing almost constantly, however many of the older technologies that lead to the technologies we know now still exist and are still used. This means rather than replacing the things we need to know, technology is  just adding to them, and not only do we need to know what they are but what their order is in terms of how recent they are and how advanced they are. Thankfully when it comes to internet technologies this is fairly easy to follow based on price alone.

First is the PCI modem, better known as dial-up. This is often free, requiring only that you purchase a modem (this in itself is usually very cheap and can be purchased for around £10, depending what you buy and where you buy it from. This is usually the slowest type of internet connection and is the oldest, predating Google. This uses your phone line to connect you to the internet, which means that so long as you’re paying your phone bill you’re paying for your internet. This is the cheapest option and is considered to be highly economic as a choice. However because the internet is using your phone line you phone will be unavailable while you are online. Dial up is a great option for someone who wants but does not need internet – if you want to have access to the net but don’t want to be paying for what you aren’t using.

The second is DSL, this uses the same basic technology as Dial-up, given that it still uses your phone line however it will not keep your phone line engaged. This is sometimes known as the ‘always on’ connection and is for anyone who needs a more reliable internet connection. This is an asymmetric option, meaning that it supports different upload and download rates, at home you may know it better as ADSL (asymmetric digital subscriber line). This supports speeds in the region of 10MB download speed and is one of the most reliable connections available. If you care more about having a constant connection than speed and want something cost effective this is an ideal option.

The third is cable, though there are two types of cable. First there is coaxial; this is what you commonly see used by cable TV and is a very popular choice for data communications. This is a flexible option that can be designed to suit the individual needs of the user, as the features of the cable will be impacted by the materials used to construct the cable. This is a mid-priced option as well as a reliable one, generally using a copper wire surrounded by copper mesh conductor to transmit data. This is a very efficient method for data transfer across distances at higher speeds (making it a good choice for businesses). There is also fibre-optic, a much more recent addition to the cable options. An optic fibre connection uses specially designed material in strands as thin as human hair to communicate data, this is using optical signals rather than electrical signals which allows for much higher speeds. This is ideal for high speed connections particularly over long distances and is becoming a much more cost effective option.

The fourth option is wireless, because of portability, speed and reliability this is one of the most popular options. Wireless uses radio frequency to transmit data and can be accessed from anywhere so long as there is a WiFi adaptor located within a network coverage area and attached to your device. This is the technology that most already know about and are familiar with due to its current popularity. 

Monday, May 27, 2013

10 Best off-page SEO practices to boost your website rankings

Off-Page SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is one aspect of your SEO that you do not have direct control over. However, you can still influence your off-page SEO, and sometimes you can affect it directly. Here are ten ways that you can affect your off-page SEO in order to help rank your website a little higher in the search engine results pages.

1 - Add your link to suitable comment sections

There are still comment sections out there that will allow you to link from them, and the links are still indexed by Google so they have a good affect on your websites SEO. It may take a little bit of searching and research, but it is a solid method for getting more links to your website.

2 - Find suitable link partners

It is very easy to find link partners, but finding suitable ones is difficult. Some people have lots of websites and blogs that are spread across different domains and have different IP addresses. If you are in a similar position, then you can become a link partner with this person and start swapping reciprocal links between your sites. You can do this an awful lot because your activity does not look suspicious. You avoid suspicion by not reciprocally linking two sites directly. For example, if you have website A B and C, and your partner has website 1 2 and 3, you link A to 1, but link 1 to B, and B to 2 and 2 to A or C. The more websites you have then the more convoluted you can make the process in order to gain more links.

3 - Don’t neglect social media

Social media is now used by the search engines in order to rank your website. It is a good idea to create a few profiles and try to create a bit of a buzz on there. Try to get a few links from social media, and try to get a few mentions on there too.

4 - Reciprocal links are good if you keep them secret

Do not ask people to link to you reciprocally, as the search engines will identify your request and punish your website. You should set up reciprocal links, but try to arrange them in secret. Do it over email or the private messaging system on social media. Reciprocal links are a good way of building links, just so long as you do not do it too often. Ask people if they would like to swap links so that you can both enjoy an SEO benefit.

5 - Link from guest blog posts

You are often able to upload guest posts onto other people’s blogs. You need to ask their permission first, but some mainstream blogs have systems in place so that you can put in a request to upload and article/post, and then submit it with a link to your website.

6 - The IP and domain popularity

The IP and domain popularity are important. You want a link from a popular domain and not a link from a website that is associated with a blacklisted or red-flagged IP address.

The wider the variety of people that link to your site, the more likely it is that your content is of high quality. Different IPs are also to be considered something important, as several domains can be hosted on the same IP. Therefore, as part of a successful offsite optimization campaign, it is important that you have a number of links coming from different IP addresses and domains.

7 - Link from blogs that you have started yourself

Why not start a few blogs and update them yourself. You can write content that is relevant to your website and then link to it. If you gain links to your blog from other website, then the popularity of your blogs will positively affect the quality of the links you create within it.

8 - Link text and title attribute of the link

Another quality criterion is the link text and title attribute of the link. Suppose that your site deals with the topic shoes. Popular keywords may then be sneakers and leather shoes. If the site that links to you has titles such as "a fluffy kitten", "Cheese for the businessman", or link text (anchor text) such as "My grandpas website", etc, then a search engine will not recognize link between your site and the linking site. The title and anchor text are not related to your website, so the link from that site will be of a low quality. If the titles were about fashion, and the anchor text mentioned shoes, the link would be a good one.

9 - Consider links from forum websites

There are not many forum websites these days, and the ones that exist are highly administered. This does not mean that they all refuse links to other sites. Some of them are poorly administered so your link will slip the net, and others just require that you jump through a few hoops first before you are able to post a working link onto the forum.

10 - High quality backlinks

Basically, every link to your homepage is positive. However, what is important is not the quantity but the quality and naturalness of the links. The quality of a link is based on various factors. This begins with the linking page itself, as the higher the PageRank, then the stronger the link is. Remember that your website needs to offer something special to be linked from another important page. The topic of the linking page needs to be similar to your website. If the link appear higher up in the content, then it is all the better.

Bio: Kate Funk is an expert in coaching individuals in SEO and business networking skills at tutorleader.com .


Sunday, May 26, 2013

New and advanced curing agents show high performance


The new and advanced curing agents in USA are showing high performance.

There are several epoxy manufacturers USA and it is important to call for the right one and there are guidelines to assist. CCC is very popular. There are several bodies to provide us with the epoxy manufacturing in USA. There are waterborne curing agents and waterborne polyurethane dispersions. The products are globally in demand. It is because it is high in its performance rate. They are sold to the manufacturers who make coatings, adhesives, sealants and elastomers. The companies are expanding its branches often in other countries because of the heavy demand.

Resin System is a high quality resin. It is popular for lamination with fiberglass, carbon fiber, Kevlar or any type of other related uses. The syrup-like consistency has the quality to wet out fast. Its application is also very easy calling for more of use in the global market.

There are some tips to remember before we choose the best of the epoxy manufacturers along with their products. It is important to choose the hardener below based on the temperature, curing thickness, desired working time and certainly the time to dry them after any sort of application.

This Resin System produces a low viscosity, semi-clear, low smell epoxy. It is ideal for the layup use. It is also used as a good sealer of the porous substance like that of the wood. It is because it has a good penetrating power. It is not very difficult to make an adhesive or putty or filler if it is combined with the resin system with the good quality powder fillers.

Solvents may be present in the epoxy resin system or may be used to clean up equipment and spills in areas where epoxies are handled. Commonly used solvents include acetone, methyl ethyl ketone, toluene, xylene, glycol ethers, and alcohols.

The various multinational manufacturers of epoxy products centering from USA are many. They are involved in new construction and industrial maintenance and repairing work. They are often well-known for its quality. It has trained and qualified staff chemists to deal with these. They specifically contribute in customizing the formulate products. Many of its products have been developed through its experience in supplying epoxies to the flooring.

Anti-corrosion in the fields of coating became an important requirement in the global industries. It was possible with the rust stabilizing coal tar epoxy formula that became the foundation for state-of-the-art. It has been proven anti-corrosion coating systems.

Corrosion control coatings or the CCC coatings are ideal for use in most environments. To be specific it is very useful in the chemical and marine applications. It is helpful because it can withstand the extreme environmental conditions found in the North Sea and the Middle East.

The total effective control of substrate corrosion and protection against external factors are such as water, hydro-carbons, chemicals, salt and pollution. Control is achieved by using Corrode less Epoxy Rust Stabilizers, Reinforced Epoxy Rust Stabilizers and Reinforced Finishes. This is very useful in the pipelines as well where rust can be checked.

Guest Blog from : Satadal Basak

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Technological Improvements to Lead to LED Bulb Dominance


Improvements in the production process of LED bulbs looks set to guarantee the product the Lion’s share of the lighting market. As production techniques are perfected, the costs are falling as are the asking prices. The LED bulb has long been recognized as a more effective, cost efficient and energy efficient alternative to its lighting predecessors, but its higher price has often put off customers. Now however, with the perfected technology an ex CEO of Phillips Lighting has predicted that the LED bulb will hold an 80% market share by 2020.

Former CEO of Phillips Lighting, Ludo Carnotensis suggested that the 80% market share was ‘in the cards’. This would represent a dramatic increase for a product that only held a 12% share in 2012 and is predicted to hold a quarter by 2014.

Many current ambassadors for LED lighting are already enjoying the long-term financial gains from implementing the product. The higher energy efficiency means that electricity bills may decrease significantly. The higher initial cost has many balking and ignoring the eventual return. This may be completely reversed as the prices continue to drop.

The lighting market has been a relatively stable one for nearly a century with minimal revolutions, breakthroughs and innovations. Large companies like Phillips and Osram have been able to dominate the marketplace and make it difficult for new pretenders to throw their hat into the ring. This is partially due to the necessity of specially crafted and expensive glass furnaces in the production process. However, it is possible for new entrants to mass produce LED bulbs in a cost effective and competitive manner.

The current CEO of Phillips Lighting North America, Ed Crawford, has described this revelation as a ‘paradigm shift’. The lighting industry has a major new player for the first time in a century.

The increased competition naturally leads to higher quality products and greater variety. The vast majority of fittings now accept LED bulbs like old friends. Properties can benefit from LED downlights now just as readily as public areas can be lit by a host of specially rendered LED floodlights. The aforementioned energy efficiency is even more apparent when halogen bulbs are replaced by their LED brethren en masse.

The United States’ LED bulb industry reached a pivotal point this year as manufacturer Cree released a bulb for less than $10 and was winning the battle with superpower Phillips for shelf space at home ware mega-store Home Depot.

This could be the start of the death march for the halogen bulb as its boisterous younger brother takes the reigns.

Guest Blog from Chris Balme

Friday, May 24, 2013

How to Email Market Well


Avoid Spamming:
One of the worst things you can do in email marketing is spam your customers, this is exactly what you do not want to do. It has been knows in the past for businesses to spam their customers resulting in them destroying the loyalty they once gained. Spamming was a huge problem that email service providers introduced filters to get rid of the spam. To avoid spamming issues make sure that when you send out an email you ask your customers permission to send more. You can offer your customers discounts and coupons to keep them interested in your services and products.

You’re Objectives:
Before starting your email campaign make sure that you know exactly what you want to achieve from it. There are a number of things you can achieve through email marketing including customer loyalty, ongoing relationships and direct responses. In order to achieve all of this you need to plan ahead and set yourself clear goals.

You’re Message:
The message within your email is the most important part of the campaign. It is therefore important that you think about it carefully if you want to draw in your audience. Some points to remember when writing your email are listed below.

·         The subject line is one of the most important parts of your email determining whether or not the reader will open it up or not. You should make sure that it is catchy, interesting and straight to the point.

·         Make sure that the content within your email is easy to read, clear and doesn't waffle on.

·         Any important information that you want to share should be written at the beginning of the email followed by the less important information.

·         Keep your email short and to the point so that readers are able to see clearly what it is that you are advertising.

·         Your email should be signed off with a signature including your personal and company details. You should also include an opt out link.

Test Your Message:
Before sending out your email to potential customers you should make sure that you test it. You can do this by experimenting with the font, layout, images and links to see what looks good where.  Experimenting like this will allow you to see what looks good and what doesn't.

The Recipients:
When carrying out an email marketing strategy it is a good idea to make sure that you have a good email list. This will allow you to target the correct people your products are for. Once you begin sending out emails it will be clear to you after a few months those who are non-responsive.  You should remove these people from the list so that it remains up to date. 

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Slid.es

This is a very neat application. I love the fact that I don't need to install anything or load any software. It is a very powerful and feature rich web application that you can access from any device (thank you responsive development). 
The Slides editor is available right in your browser. All of your work is stored securely on our servers, accessible wherever you are.
 Here is an example I made in 15 minutes:


Slides was founded to allow anyone with a web browser create and share beautiful presentations for free. ~ http://slid.es/
This is way better than power point and the application is as fluid as the top rated apps on the marketplace. I loved that you can embed it just like a youtube video. It is so simple - there was no learning curve for me. Reveal.js does an excellent job in the animation department bringing presentations to life. You no longer need to have a boring fade in and fade out action on each slide.

What are you waiting for? It's free!

Building up a cost effective virtual team for Localization


Taking a product into global market and selling the product in just a single language can lead to loss nowadays. In order to attain a good position and reputation in market a product needs to be localized in ample number of languages so that it is adapted across the world. Localization testing of such localized products plays an acute role in the product's success. With emerging technologies day by day outsourcing is gaining heights in the testing field. A cost effective virtual team for localization testing can be thought in order to maintain a good product quality. A virtual team consisting of localization testing experts worldwide aiming for the same objective can prove to be effective. Virtual team members from different locations can contact each other through web conferencing, instant messaging, E-mails or Skype. The major advantages of setting up a virtual team are that a project can become a 24hr project, time differences can lead to involvement of testers 24 hrs on a product. Diversity in testers can be seen in outsourcing, every person from different country will have a unique mind-set and multiple points of view. Also, we can have expert suggestions of the translations and characters usage in various languages. In house virtual team will prove to be more cost effective. So the wise idea will be to start building a virtual team for outsourcing.

In this competitive market, building a team’s always a challenging task however it’s not impossible. This can be achieved in more cost effective way by making a virtual team. Productivity will get increased (may move to twice) team will perform testing day and night due to time zone differences. Less overhead on employees as they can work from Home. Experts from different nationalities can be hired at lower cost i.e. one can make a low budget team with higher expertise. There will always Bandwidth available for Meeting, Build scheduling and ready to perform testing at any point of time regardless of time. Multiple points of views will help to tackle problem.QA Testing will become much more easier after making a virtual team as there will always higher efforts at low cost.

In localization testing the selection of virtual team is very effective. The virtual team means a group of members working in different locations. In localization testing team we require multi language experts. If we want that our team will have multi language experts than it costs higher. So it is better to go for virtual team. The virtual team for localization testing comprises of below features:

-- Team should have good understanding of destination language.

-- Team must be aware of Operating System, Keyboards functionalities, Hot keys, Upper and Lower case conversions features etc.

-- QA Testing Team should have good knowledge of computer functionalities.

-- Team should comprise of multi language experts.

-- Team should be ready for flexible schedule.

Summary:
In localization testing the selection of virtual team is very effective. QA Testing will become much more easier after making a virtual team as there will always higher efforts at low cost.


Author:
Knowledge Sharing Team at QA InfoTech is responsible for research on new tools & technologies for effective software quality assurance and testing services across all industry verticals. QA InfoTech (an ISO 9001:2008 & CMMI III certified) is one of the leading Localization Testing Companies with five testing “Centers of Excellence” in the United States and India.  It offers end to end QA testing services.



Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Is SEO Something Your Company Should Be Doing?

Ever since the Google Panda and Farmer updates of 2011, many companies seem afraid to talk about search engine optimization (SEO). Some websites took SEO too far and were punished for it; now others are now reluctant to consider SEO all. This is a huge mistake. Attracting new prospects with search-engine-optimized content is an extremely cost-effective, long-term marketing strategy.

Consumers today count on the search engines as a starting point when they begin research into products and services. Sometimes, these consumers do not even realize they have begun a journey towards a purchase; they have simply searched for a solution to a problem and will need time to understand what product or service they should buy.

Consumers in the research phase can be converted to sales over time, but your company must connect with them early to build brand awareness and begin educating for the sale. Optimized content on your website can address problems and questions that are common for those who fit your ideal customer profile. If this content ranks well in the search engines, you will have a chance to find new prospects early and develop them into advocates for your brand.

For example, an office manager in a medical practice may struggle with scheduling issues for years before coming to grips with the fact that better
medical office software can be purchased to solve these issues.
When that office manager is ready to buy, she may have already formed a relationship with a specific brand, and she will be less susceptible to considering another brand's offers.

In order to ensure your company appears high in the results for a particular search query, you need to apply the right SEO on your web pages. SEO strategies make it clear to the search bots which questions your site answers for searchers. This involves putting the right tags on various page elements and providing a sitemap that makes it easy for the search bots to find how all the content is connected.

SEO never neglects the needs of human searchers. The search engines have become more sophisticated about how they evaluate websites, and they look at visitor behavior to determine whether a site truly adds value. If your site covers questions searchers ask with good information in an engaging manner, visitors will respond to your content in ways that convince the search engines that your site has value. When other sites start linking into your site, the search engines will take notice, and your pages will appear higher in the search results.

Your SEO content on your website will persist for years. As long as the information is useful for searchers, the search engines will keep sending traffic. This traffic will be highly focused on your offers. With a good funnel in place on your site, you will have a system that keeps generating new customers for years to come.

Facebook Forgot Their Stylesheet



Monday, May 20, 2013

Backup your data


Data is a vital part in ensuring a business’s success, so it is extremely important that you make sure you have it stored some place safe in case you suffer from data loss. If you do suffer from data loss and you have not had any backup system in place it could cost your business both time and money.

The process of backing up your information is simply to copy and archive the data from your computer so that it is able to be restored back in its original state should you lose it.

Ways of backing up your information include magnetic tape, hard disk, cloud, optical storage, solid state storage, remote backup service, onsite backup and offsite backup. The two that are going to be concentrated on in this article are onsite and offsite backup.

Onsite backup:
Onsite backup involves having a software company install their software onto your IT systems so that you can then backup your data onto their system. The software is extremely reliable and secure so you need have no worries. The backup software will be arranged and set up so that any computer within the building is able to backup information to the system. It is extremely easy to use and highly efficient. Onsite backup in generally the most preferred method to be used by businesses and individuals.

Offsite backup:
Offsite backup makes sure that you are covered for business continuity, data archiving and disaster recovery. The system works via an internet connection that automatically backs up any data that has been stored on your computer. The data is then stored in a data centre situated away from your own business organisation. Even with your data stored away from your business you are still able to gain access to the data. Most software companies will use your organisations internet connection so that there is no need to install any new hardware. Some companies will even store your data in two separate locations a long way from each other for that added security measure. Generally you will have all your data restored back to you within 24 hours.
It is important that you choose a backup system that will suit both you and your business so consider your options and take it from there.

Author Bio:
Katy is a UK based writer and lives on the internet, when she is not browsing she is writing about it. Katy currently writes for a dial up internet site so understands the need to back up your data, there is nothing worse than losing connection right in the middle of something!

Google Monthly Analytics Update - May

This month’s Google Analytics updates include an invitation to try a new tool providing insights into the customer journey, announcement of Premium availability globally, improvements to Dashboards and ideas for using Universal Analytics. Access Analytics »
Better Understand the Customer Journey to Online Purchase
Savvy marketers understand that you don’t always seal the deal with a single tactic. A user may see a display ad, click on a link from a friend, or do a search before buying something from your site. To help you better understand the increasingly-complex customer journey, we’ve created a tool that lets you explore online buying behavior and see how different marketing interactions affect business success. Learn More.
Google Analytics Premium Expands into Europe
We have recently expanded Google Analytics Premium to France, Germany and Spain. Google Analytics Premium is all the power and ease you expect from Google Analytics standard, plus extras that help larger businesses get the most from its robust capabilities. Many brands in these regions are already putting Google Analytics Premium to great use.Learn More.
Real-Time Widgets Now Available in Dashboards
Google Analytics Dashboards give you a simple way to arrange a set of related custom widgets into a report you look at frequently (see dashboards for a variety of use cases in our Solutions Gallery). We have recently expanded dashboards’ functionality with four new real-time widgets that you can plug into any dashboard (new or existing) of your choosing. Learn More.
Ideas For Using Universal Analytics for Business
Universal Analytics introduces a new set of Google Analytics features allowing businesses to gain a deeper and more strategic understanding of what’s capturing the attention of customers as they move from online to offline. So how can Universal Analytics help businesses turn customer data into sales? Google Analytics Certified Partner Loves Data designed a simple experiment to find out.Learn More.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Electronic Cigarette Technology Develops as the Industry Booms


Like with all industries, the added interest in and popularity of electronic cigarettes has led to an increased level of innovations. As the product proves to be more than a simple fad, new businesses and manufacturers are joining the marketplace. This has led to numerous breakthroughs and technological developments.

The electronic cigarette is used as an alternative to the traditional cigarette in a high percentage of cases. As such, there are a number of parameters by which vapers (the aficionados of e cigs) judge their electronic cigarette:

  •          The lower cost of using the electronic cigarette
  •          The perceived health benefits
  •          The efficiency of being able to vape almost anywhere
  •          The environmental benefits

It is important for electronic cigarette manufacturers to take advantage of these benefits and maximize their effects.

Intelligent electronic cigarettes can be completely customized by their users to prolong their lifespan and efficiency. This increased efficiency and longer lifespan can significantly reduce replacement costs and thus reduce the total expenditure. The customization allows the vaper to use the e cig the exact amount that they desire.

A number of large tobacco companies are investing heavily in electronic cigarette manufacturing. As such, their research and development teams of consistently new ways to improve the quality of all e cig components. Cartomizers, batteries and e liquids are being constantly revamped and improved for longer life and improved usage.

Due to the industry’s relative infancy; electronic cigarettes are yet to plateau as new production techniques are being devised and revised. Only when the product’s optimum efficiency is reached will the speed of innovation slow and halt, much like the computer console industry wherein innovation is slowing as a plateau is reached. The technologies are similar in the regard that both can be updated by the user without reinvestment.

Furthermore, the technological advances allow the electronic cigarette to be more environmentally friendly than the traditional cigarette could ever be. The average electronic cigarette is almost completely recyclable now whereas the tobacco cigarette takes upwards of 26 years to decompose, clogging up public areas and bodies of water for decades.

The only revelation that is working counter to the popularity of the electronic cigarette is the prohibition of their use in various public places. Whilst there are no legal reasons for public places to outlaw the use of the e cig, some establishments have banned them in their individual regulations. Despite this detracting fact, the e cig can be used in far more places than its older but not necessarily wiser tobacco brother.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Before Meets After: The Importance of Being Current


Trends come and go. And just like we adjust our hairstyles and clothing to stay with the times, so should a company adjust their branding.

When Maloney & Porcelli was launched in 1996, it became the after-work watering hole for Midtown businessmen looking to charge $50 steaks to their expense accounts. Over the years, the heat of M&P has cooled significantly, and according to the NY Times, M&P will be the next NYC restaurant to take the plunge into a re-design. The restaurant has always had the look and feel of an old Manhattan club, and has attracted a crowd of investment bankers with Ivy legacies. And while this look seemed all too fitting in the economic growth and subsequent “golden age” of the 90′s, it’s become a bit outdated in 2012, especially when the trend now is modern and minimal. Father and son duo, Alan and Michael Stillman, are taking the restaurant into the 21st century and updating it with a “Mad-Men” feel that is ever so appropriate, considering the restaurant’s proximity to so many Madison Ave. agencies. M&P’s massive pork shanks came to signify 90′s excess, and while the pork shanks remain, not much about the restaurant is the same. The design is fresh and sleek, and still feels the same as the original M&P. The trick here is updating, not changing. Instead of redoing the interior entirely, a few changes in d├ęcor (as well as a greatly updated menu) would suffice. Only time will tell if the Stillman’s are able to return M&P to it’s 90′s glory, but we’re really liking what we have seen of the re-design so far.

The aim of a successful re-brand is to adapt to meet a changing world, not to completely redo your image. A subtle facelift of a brand is necessary every 5 to 10 years if you wish to remain current, and is to be expected of most companies. However, a major overhaul of a brand can result in one of two things: either your brand is viewed in a completely new light by customers and business flourishes, or  you create an image that is unrecognizable to your customers and you return to the initial logo.

Unfortunately, this was the case for The Gap, who fell victim to the latter of these two instances when their logo appeared in Helvetica with a blue box in the upper right corner. The logo was a flop, primarily because of the poor design, but also because there was nothing recognizable about the logo. Albeit, the box in the corner was a nod to the original “GAP in the box”, but the shade of blue used in the re-design didn’t even match the former logo and was completely off-brand. Naturally, this re-design was met with a tremendous amount of backlash from the design community and The Gap promptly returned to their old logo. To create a happy medium, their old logo, which has become iconic in its simplicity, now appears in conjunction with Helvetica signage, keeping with the visual language of their “1969″ line, but still maintaining the original look and feel of Gap stores.

In most instances, a complete re-design is not necessary, as is the case for Starbucks, Mercedes, and Apple. For these companies, a simple logo change and typeface adjustment every 10 years is sufficient to remain relevant in a competitive market. But that is largely because these brands are already so iconic and relevant (not to mention successful) that a complete image revamp isn’t necessary.
A perfect example of a subtle re-design would be MTV’s logo, which, aside from a few minor changes here and there, has remained pretty much the same since it was created. The logo as it appears now is a cropped version of the original, appearing usually with video playing in the letter M, and TV is in knockout white. Very on trend and very modern. The outline was removed around the outer edge of the letter V, which made the logo feel light and airy. Because the name MTV is so iconic (and because MTV no longer actually plays music videos), it only seemed logical to remove the words “Music Television” from the bottom of the logo. This re-design is so successful because it is more relevant and modern, without any real changes to the logo.
When 2010 arrived, Comedy Central realized how outdated, and well… 90′s, their logo looked compared to the recently updated logos of the other TV networks. As a result, they completely scrapped their old design for a more modern, typographic interpretation of the Comedy Central brand. The “little c within a big C”  was a really fresh departure, but forms the same circular shape as the globe in the former logo. They chose a completely new typeface, and flipped “CENTRAL” upside down, probably alluding to the twisted nature of the comedy featured on the network. The logo was met with some criticism, but overall the transition from the old aesthetic to the new one did not affect them adversely, and has garnered a lot of positive feedback.

The lesson to be learned here is again, less is more, and that subtle changes to existing branding may be all that is necessary to update a company’s look. The goal of a re-design is to freshen a look, not to completely change it. In many cases, new branding may go practically unnoticed. And always remember: a re-design should always capture the feel of your brand.

Studio K&M is a full-service design and concept firm based in New York, skilled in graphic and web design, art direction, identity development, usability and social media. This article was mentioned on the New York Times website in their “What We’re Reading” column. You can can follow Studio K&M on Twitter @StudioKandM.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

CSS 3 Full Screen Page Transitions

While doing my research on cool CSS3 properties and new ideas, I ran across a website called Cod Drops. They have some really cool tutorials and inventions on their site. One of my favorite inventions that they had come up with was to make a website feel more like software. I think our goal for every project is to take the user experience to the next level which requires a more cohesive design and a smooth experience that makes you feel like you are having an experience rather than point and clicking on a website.


When closing the current view, it will move back to the initial position while the other boxes come back up again. Another type of page transition can be seen on the works section where we will show a portfolio item by sliding in a panel from the bottom. The current view gets scaled down and disappears in the back.
All effects are done with CSS transitions and controlled by applying classes with JavaScript. The whole layout is flexible and some media queries are added to size down things for smaller screens. 

If you feel like you are trapped, use the 'escape' key to get back to the homepage.

This is my variation of the CSS 3 Fullscreen Page Transitions.

For example - this is how I would display the work panel on click:
  z-index: 1000; 
 opacity: 1; 
 -webkit-transform: translateY(-100%); 
 -webkit-transition: -webkit-transform 0.5s ease-in-out;
 -moz-transform: translateY(-100%); 
 -moz-transition: -moz-transform 0.5s ease-in-out; 
 transform: translateY(-100%); 
 transition: transform 0.5s ease-in-out; 
 -ms-transform: translateY(-100%); 

This is how I would hide that work panel upon close:
  opacity: 0; 
 -webkit-transition: -webkit-transform 0.5s ease-in-out, opacity 0.5s ease-in-out; 
 -webkit-transform: translateY(-100%) scale(0.5); 
 -moz-transition: -moz-transform 0.5s ease-in-out, opacity 0.5s ease-in-out; 
 -moz-transform: translateY(-100%) scale(0.5); 
 transition: transform 0.5s ease-in-out, opacity 0.5s ease-in-out; 
 transform: translateY(-100%) scale(0.5); 
 -ms-transform: translateY(-100%) scale(0.5); 
 z-index: 0; 

All of the transformations occur with valid css, but the actions are triggered by basic javascript functions. The functions are kept in a separate JS file just for the ease of visualizing how the triggers work. You might have an easier time viewing the actual source once you check out the live demo.

Few Information About Ethical Hackers and Courses


Ethical hacking is the new term in the field of information technology. Ever since the Internet has evolved as the integral part of our life, the hacking and hackers have become a critical aspect of IT security. Basically hacking is the procedure to find out the vulnerability present in the system. This entire task is explicitly performed by the technically sound personnel called hackers. However the purpose of hacking may vary from person to person. Some can take advantage of the procedure to steal confidential data from the system and others can only work to explore the in-depth details of the system. Based on these factors we can say that hacking can be both ethical and unethical and so are the hackers.

The ethical hackers are real programmers who have completed their ethical hacking training along with have thorough technical knowledge. Various institutes offer courses for ethical hacking for those who are interested to work in this field. In these institutes they are taught how to use their hacking skills to penetrate into the system and identify the loopholes present in the system and also fix the issues.

It is truly said that the ethical hackers need to think alike the intruders while exposing the vulnerabilities. They are the only one who can track the move of an unethical hacker and knows how the hackers can obtain the data illegally from the system. Thus the ethical hackers work to expose four main facts. They first identify the weakness of the system that the intruders can gain access to. Then they try to understand what the intruders could do with that data once gained. They will then alert the employee or staffs about the loopholes present in the system. Lastly they will patch the system and hence protect the system from any malicious attack. However the difference between the legal hackers and intruders is legal hackers report the issues to their client instead of taking advantages of them. In other word one can say ethical hacking benefits the system by protecting it from unethical hackers and thus increases the defense of the system.

Certified ethical hacking course helps an IT professional to set apart from the crowd. By learning the skills of ethical hacking you are able to use your power for good reasons. Ethical hacking as a career option is in great demand. A certified ethical hacker can rise above the tradition designation and can enjoy a successful and satisfying career.

Author Bio:- Kylie Taylor is an ex - IT security professional. He has gathered lots of experience throughout his career as an expertise in this field. Hence he has deliberately chosen the option to write so that he can share his knowledge on Certified ethical hackingcourse and let people know the role of ethical hacking training in IT field.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Microsoft simplifies IE testing with modern.ie


In the past, this may have involved some legally questionable installations of Windows XP to test in IE6, but thankfully those days are at an end with Microsoft’s modern.ie site. By heading over to the site’s virtualisation tools page, devs are able to download virtual machines that run IE6 through to IE10 across a combination of Windows XP, Vista, Windows 7, and Windows 8.
Windows images for Linux users — for real.
The best part of this site is that it is not limited to Windows only users; Mac and Linux users are able to grab VM images for their platforms, too.

My Cousin Kills it on Jimi Hendrix - Voodoo Child Slide

How to Make Your Website Social Media Friendly


Have you wondered why every business uses social media to market itself? Social media has emerged to be one of the most significant and cost effective ways to market and build a brand. It is therefore only wise to invest some money into your website so that it is social media friendly and therefore accessible to a larger audience. Here are 5 things you can do:

Fresh & Quality Content
High quality content attracts readers and thinkers who refer to your content on various other platforms. If you have interesting, fresh, relevant and high quality, it is more likely to be shared on various social media channels. You could use your own knowledge to build content on your website, or hire professionals who will do it for you. A lot of people invite highly qualified guests to write for them. This not only contributes to higher quality content and more visibility on social media, but also builds credibility of the brand among readers.

Easy to Share
The easier your content is to share, the more likely it is to be shared. When creating interesting content for your website, ensure you also have easy to use accessibility and sharing options installed on your page. Buttons for sharing the content on different social media channels should be installed on every page of your website so that every time a reader comes across something interesting, they can easily share it in their social circles.

Comments Reviews & Ratings Functionalities
Enable comments on your websites, wherever you feel the content can generate a meaningful discussion. The best thing about this is that you get instant feedback. You can always moderate the comments section to ensure that the discussions remain civil and inoffensive. You can also allow your readers to review your content, thoughts, products and brands in various sections of your website. Additionally, a rating functionality on each page can also help you get instant feedback from your readers. These are all very easy to do, and therefore should be a part of your website right from the planning stages.

RSS Syndication
RSS syndication is often considered a very powerful tool for marketing. It enables people to subscribe to your posts and comments so that every time your website is updated, they get a notification in their mails. This helps them follow the content they deem interesting, credible and readable. RSS content is usually read using special software known as RSS reader. The readers who use RSS syndication usually have this software installed. However, it is important for you to give them the option to subscribe to your feeds.  

Integrate Facebook and Twitter Feeds
Facebook and twitter have both come up as the most used social media channels. Therefore it is important to use both of them to promote your website. Integrating the Facebook and Twitter feeds with your website help you publish to your social media pages directly from your website. Every time you publish new content, it will be automatically published to your profiles on Facebook and twitter. You can select which content you want to publish on your social media profiles. This makes it even more powerful.

Author Bio
Richard enjoys writing about website design and online marketing. Over the last 4 years, he has published numerous articles in various technology blogs. Richard is a Magento web design specialist with over 4 years experience helping businesses increase their online presence.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

No URLs in Search Results from Google

Google is testing yet another user interface change – this time by not showing the URL of the search results for SEO, search engine optimization, on the results page.

The snapshot is from search engine land.

google-search-results-no-url

I feel that this would be detrimental to the current efforts Google is making. I understand the concept of not showing the URL means that someone won't be influenced by a URL which makes the content more valuable, but my problem is a lot of crap is on the internet (about.com, ehow.com) when SOME of those articles, NOT all, need a serious re-vamping. I would much rather look at someone's website where they have personal exp. or at least relevant to the year, over a mass out-dated wiki. This would hurt SEO on many levels. I want my site optimized for search engines, but I want my branding recognized more.

Responses from LinkedIn

Rob S:

As with many of Google’s updates relating to what the user gets from using Google search - I don’t like it and am almost to the point of routing for a competitor to make some serious inroads to Google’s commanding lead in the search engine market. I’m not a Google hater, rather a frustrated lover. For so many years Google has been so awesome and earned the position of most used engine due to its delivery of such great products and ideas. 

To the point of this post - So Google has been great at giving tons of information to its users over the years. However, since 2011(?) When citations where hidden from Google Places results, then the Place Owner’s “other information” was hidden, then huge chunks of reviews hidden all in the name of ‘cleaning up the page’… Now Places is no longer and option in the “More” drop-down and the “See more places” has been removed from the bottom of the local search ‘packs’… Now the hiding of the actual URL you’re about to go to is being considered for removal. So, I guess it’s not important for us to know where we’re going on the web, just trust Google that it’s going to be fine… 

Ok, so the more savvy user know they can still take a peek at where they are about to go by using the status bar and hovering over the link (relating to what Bob said - the popup functionality is actually already there, just not as apparent as a popup bubble on the spot that Bob suggested). But, many people don’t even realize what the status bar is for. In addition, I was just watching a news spot on how to use a computer safely, for the novice user, and one recommendation the speaker made was that novices and experts alike to run the risk of going to a bad site by simply using the address bar to type in the address of where they want to go and making a typo… His solution was to avoid typing the web address in the address bar (which is now the search bar too) and use search all the time to get where you want to go. His reasoning was that by seeing search results and looking at the green text of the URL, one can be sure they are going to the place they intended. 

Taking Google’s side for a moment - perhaps Google is trying to continue ‘cleaning up the page’ by taking away ‘unnecessary’ elements… If that is the case, I can see that taking away the URL line will reduce the average search result from 4 lines down to 3 which opens up room for 25% more white space or room for other information. If this is the case - is it reasonable? I guess it depends on what is done with the extra space.. 

Maybe I’m to cynical, but for me, the bottom line is that I don’t care for the reduction of information I get from Google. I don’t feel that Google is ‘looking out for me, or making my life easier’ by eliminating information they deem ‘unnecessary’. I know, Google is owned by Google and they have a right to do whatever they want with their products. But, users also have the right to use whatever search products they want - insinuation intended.

Daniel S:

This is probably a stupid question, and I can see why domain owners and domain SEO people would be upset about it, but mightn't this be part of a turn toward the idea i heard a while back that actual websites or domains are to someday be a thing of the past? I mean, when i intentionally vaguely ask people (to see what they think), users I mean, my friends for example in the lower fields I have worked in, construction, etc, about the usefulness/need of a certain kind of web page, they tell me as they mostly use their phones for the web, that websites aren't the thing anymore, that everyone only uses apps?

Bob P:

Perhaps Google is trying to de-value exact-match-domain names a little more, and along with it exact-match file and folder names. IMHO it is a good thing. 

The URL is not needed as long as clicking on the title in the listing takes you to the site, which it does. I think that removing the URLs reduces clutter and makes the search results page cleaner. 

On the other hand, I sometimes look for specific URLs in search results. For example, if I want to buy something I might be drawn more strongly to the URL of a known merchant. It might be a good thing if Google allows the URL to be displayed on mouseover.

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