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How to get a designer's best work for a logo, website, ad - anything

How to get a designer's best work for a logo, website, ad - anything
0 May 12, 2014

A long time ago, I had to learn from scratch how to manage visual designers, after having started out as a composer and audio producer, with no training in graphic arts -- back then I thought of it as "the blind leading the deaf." Luckily, I found that most of the skills I'd developed while working with sound carried over to other disciplines, too. There's one skill above all that I believe managers need to master in order to get the best work from a designer, or any creative professional: Talk about why, not how.

Four short links: 12 December 2013

By Nat Torkington
December 12, 2013

iBeacons — Bluetooth LE enabling tighter coupling of physical world with digital. I’m enamoured with the interaction possibilities: The latest Apple TV software brought a fantastically clever workaround. You just tap your iPhone to the Apple TV itself, and it …

Transformative Programming

By Simon St. Laurent
October 16, 2013

“Small pieces loosely joined,” David Weinberger’s appealing theory of the Web, has much to say to programmers as well. It always inspires me to reduce the size of individual code components. The hard part, though, is rarely the “small” – …

Four short links: 5 September 2013

By Nat Torkington
September 5, 2013

Bezos at the Post (Washington Post) — “All businesses need to be young forever. If your customer base ages with you, you’re Woolworth’s,” added Bezos.[...] “The number one rule has to be: Don’t be boring.” (via Julie Starr) How Carnegie-Mellon …

The demise of Google Reader: Stability as a service

By Mike Loukides
March 21, 2013

Om Malik’s brief post on the demise of Google Reader raises a good point: If we can’t trust Google to keep successful applications around, why should we bother trying to use their new applications, such as Google Keep? Given the …

Instagram: On being the product

By Mike Loukides
December 18, 2012

Let me start by saying that I’m not an Instagram user, and never have been. So I thought I could be somewhat dispassionate. But I’m finding that hard. The latest change to their terms of service is outrageous: their statement …

Four short links: 22 November 2012

By Nat Torkington
November 22, 2012

Mark Your Territory — Urine integration for Foursquare. (via Beta Knowledge) TL;DR — news summaries. Finally. Zombie Ideas and Online Instruction — The repeated return of mistaken ideas captures well my experiences with technologies in schools and what I have …

Strata Week: AWS and Rackspace, compared

By Jenn Webb
November 2, 2012

Here are a few stories from the data space that caught my attention this week. Rackspace vs Amazon As Rackspace continues to ramp up its services to compete with Amazon Web Services (AWS) — this week, announcing a partnership with …

Why StreetEasy rolled its own maps

Why StreetEasy rolled its own maps
By David Sims
March 19, 2012

Google's decision to start charging for its Maps API is leading some companies to mull other options. In this interview, StreetEasy's Sebastian Delmont explains why and how his team made a change.

Why Uber's data fascinates a neuroscientist

By David Sims
March 6, 2012

Neuroscientist Bradley Voytek's interest in networks and nodes goes beyond the human brain. Here, he discusses the data generated by car-service company Uber and how the company has influenced his research.

Why Uber's data fascinates a neuroscientist

Why Uber's data fascinates a neuroscientist
By David Sims
March 6, 2012

Neuroscientist Bradley Voytek's interest in networks and nodes goes beyond the human brain. Here, he discusses the data generated by car-service company Uber and how the company has influenced his research.

Four short links: 24 October 2011

By Nat Torkington
October 24, 2011

Tangle -- open source Javascript library for creating slider-type widgets in web pages, with built-in updating of other web elements. This is fantastic for exploring "what-if" scenarios. Check out the demos. Location-Based Security -- The researchers have created a customized version of Android controlled by a “policy engine” on a server. The Android devices use Bluetooth and near-field communications...

API Versioning

By George Reese
October 12, 2011

API versioning is something a lot of API designers don't worry about until the second version of their API. API versioning, however, is a controversial subject with strong opinions on both version representation and behavior.

New tools and techniques for applying climate data

By Michael Ferrari
August 31, 2011

Climate cycles, machine learning and improved models were all part of the discussions at the first New York Academy of Sciences Workshop on Climate Informatics.

New tools and techniques for applying climate data

By Michael Ferrari
August 31, 2011

Climate cycles, machine learning and improved models were all part of the discussions at the first New York Academy of Sciences Workshop on Climate Informatics.

Apple and a web-free cloud

Apple and a web-free cloud
By Alasdair Allan
June 16, 2011

From custom chips, to the data centers backing its new iCloud effort, Apple is committed to controlling the end-user experience. The web has no place in their vision.

Challenges aired at Health Data Initiative Forum

By Andy Oram
June 10, 2011

A major bash by the Department of Health and Human Services and the Institute of Medicine--together with the NIH, EPA, and others--drew hundreds of people yesterday in Washington, DC to discuss the use of government data in health care. Some of the interesting apps on display, and a look toward next steps.

Challenges aired at Health Data Initiative Forum

By Andy Oram
June 10, 2011

A major bash by the Department of Health and Human Services and the Institute of Medicine--together with the NIH, EPA, and others--drew hundreds of people yesterday in Washington, DC to discuss the use of government data in health care. Some of the interesting apps on display, and a look toward next steps.

3 big challenges in location development

3 big challenges in location development
By Bruce Stewart
April 14, 2011

With the goal of indexing the entire web by location, Fwix founder Darian Shirazi has had to dig in deep to location-based development issues. In this interview, Shirazi discusses challenges he sees in location and how Fwix is addressing them.

Why location data is a mess, and what can be done about it

Why location data is a mess, and what can be done about it
By Bruce Stewart
March 9, 2011

Usage restrictions and ever-expanding datasets make location data hard to manage. In the following interview, SimpleGeo's Chris Hutchins explains how companies and developers can address the location mess.

Four short links: 8 December 2010

By Nat Torkington
December 8, 2010

Send Us Your Thoughts (YouTube) -- from the excellent British comedians Mitchell and Webb comes this take on viewer comments in the news. (via Steve Buttry's News Foo writeup) Amazon proves that REST doesn’t matter for Cloud APIs -- with the death of WS-* and their prolix overbearing complexity, the difference between REST and basic XML RPC is almost...

Four short links: 5 November 2010

By Nat Torkington
November 5, 2010

S4 -- S4 is a general-purpose, distributed, scalable, partially fault-tolerant, pluggable platform that allows programmers to easily develop applications for processing continuous unbounded streams of data. Open-sourced (Apache license) by Yahoo!. RDF and Semantic Web: Can We Reach Escape Velocity? (PDF) -- spot-on presentation from the data.gov.uk linked data advisor. It nails, clearly and in only 12 slides, why...

Four short links: 15 October 2010

By Nat Torkington
October 15, 2010

Mechanical Turk Requester Activity: The Insignificance of the Long Tail -- For Wikipedia we have the 1% rule, where 1% of the contributors (this is 0.003% of the users) contribute two thirds of the content. In the Causes application on Facebook, there are 25 million users, but only 1% of them contribute a donation. [...] The lognormal distribution of...

The potential of Healthcare.gov

By Andy Oram
July 1, 2010

Healthcare.gov from the Department of Health and Human Services provides an example of the goals behind opening up data--not data for data's sake, but data as a tool people can use to get more involved in policy, have an impact on civic life, and hopefully make their own lives better along the way.

Mårten Mickos discusses the strategy at Eucalyptus Systems

Mårten Mickos discusses the strategy at Eucalyptus Systems
By Andy Oram
June 22, 2010

Mickos responds to such questions as whether private clouds are needed, whether they are too hard to manage, and whether the Amazon API is the best foundation for Eucalyptus.

European Union starts project about economic effects of open government data

By Andy Oram
June 11, 2010

Open source advocate Marco Fioretti has just announced the start of a study on open data for the European Union, with a focus on economic benefits for local businesses. Related surveys are also mentioned.

Benefits and Impediments to Health IT

By Sarah Sorensen
June 2, 2010

HealthIT can help broaden the reach of medical expertise and care to rural areas. It can support skill building and improve access to information and resources for medical professionals to better equip them to diagnose and treat those who walk through their clinic's door...

Consumer-Driven Schematron Schemas

By Rick Jelliffe
April 3, 2010

Ian Robinson has a great 2008 article Service-Oriented Development with Consumer-Driven Contracts and a follow-up A Contract Vocabulary that turns normal thinking about schemas on its head. His idea, in the context of SOA systems with a limited number of...

Flash Platform Services: Social Service

By Russ Ferguson
March 25, 2010

More frequently clients want to add social networking capability to projects. For example, using a persons Twitter or MySpace account for authentication. Or to have the application update a persons status and email a friend. All of these features are...

YQL and Flash Platform Services' Distribution Service

By Russ Ferguson
March 22, 2010

The concept of an item online going "viral" is one that clients, developers and advertisers alike would love to hear about a project they are working on. In the case that something does become popular, how easy would it be...

Principles for Standardized REST Authentication

By George Reese
December 26, 2009

I'm tired of wasting brain cycles figuring out whether a given vendor requires you to sign your query before or after you URL encode your parameters and I am fed up with vendors who insist on using interactive user credentials to authenticate API calls. Here's a set of standards that I think should be in place for any REST authentication scheme.

Managed Services Means Never Having To Say You're Sorry

By Chris Josephes
October 13, 2009

Hopefully, you weren't stuck in a New Zealand airport with a T-Mobile Sidekick.

Adobe Announces "Flash Platform Services"

By Andrew Trice
September 22, 2009

Today, Adobe made the announcement of "Flash Platform Services", a suite a services that enable developers to easily create, scale, and monetize their applications. This includes 3 components: Distribution, Collaboration, and Social.

Cloud API Wars - Where is the security arsenal?

By Subra Kumaraswamy
September 11, 2009

Last week was an exciting week for the Virtualization and Cloud customers and potential adopters. During VMWorld 2009, a handful of announcements by the cloud computing "picks" and "shovel" providers marked the beginning of the "Cloud API War" -...

Data chef: SPSS Tripe Consommé

By Uche Ogbuji
May 1, 2009

The data chef discusses translation of data from SPSS format, for those who don't have a licensed copy at hand.

Flex 101: RPC Basics

By Andrew Trice
May 1, 2009

When building Flex applications, it is important to understand how to get data into and out of your applications and remote procedure calls (rpc). In this post, I'll try to shed some light on HTTPService, WebService, and RemoteObject classes and their usage.

Demystifying Web Services

By Amy Blankenship
April 15, 2009

I had my first encounter with web services about two years ago. I was contracting at the time, and Adobe had just announced the end of development of the software where I had most of my reputation, Authorware.  I needed to retool my skills to Adobe Flex, and I needed to convey to potential clients what kind of skills they could expect as I was retooling.  I decided I wanted my company website to reflect the bleeding edge of what I was doing. But I was also devoting a lot of time to blogging and participating in online newsgroups to try to spread the word, and I just didn't have time to manually update my site as often as I felt I needed to.

Using the Cloud for Disaster Recovery

By George Reese
April 12, 2009

Few companies have a solid disaster recovery plan and fewer companies actually verify their DR plans are working. One of the often missed benefits of cloud computing is that it makes rapid disaster recovery with minimal data loss extremely cost effective and enables the automation of those processes that can be tested often using automated tools.

[AWS:ElasticMapReduce] Google-sized Parallel Computing on a You-sized Budget

By M. David Peterson
April 2, 2009

@ http://aws.amazon.com/elasticmapreduce/ you'll find an interesting new entry into Amazon's utility-based web service offerings: Elastic MapReduce.

eGov Watch: The Importance of Data.Gov

eGov Watch: The Importance of Data.Gov
By Kurt Cagle
March 26, 2009

The Illinois River is a slow moving, meandering waterway that originates out of Lake Michigan, flows beneath downtown Chicago, then cuts through the rich Illinois topsoil as it wends its way to Peoria (giving the area its distinctive river bluffs formation) then through the middle of the state until it finally meets the Mississippi river at Alton, Illinois, on the Missouri border. Given where it begins and ends, the Illinois sees a lot of river traffic, from barges laden with grain to shipping containers to steam-powered paddle-wheel boats that evoke the memories of Mark Twain.

Blame the Credit Card Franchise: Criminals on Amazon's EC2 (Elastic Compute) Cloud

By Nitesh Dhanjani
March 11, 2009

Amazon EC2 is an extraordinarily powerful infrastructure available to anyone with a stolen credit card. Even if someone is able to use the EC2 platform for a few hours with a stolen credit card, he or she will be able to initiate a vicious cycle that may become impossible to halt.

Developing Mashup Air Apps: Yahoo Maps Web Services

By Marco Casario
March 10, 2009

Excerpted from Chapter 18 of the Adobe AIR 1.5 Cookbook. Mashup applications are based on the possibility of consuming remote data sources, and to create one, you need a good understanding of the APIs available. AIR offers even greater possibilities for creating mashup applications and widgets. With AIR, you can go beyond all the sandbox security of the browser and add advanced features to the application to interact with the file system or local storage with SQLite. This chapter demonstrates how to integrate the Flickr, Yahoo Maps, and Twitter web services to create desktop mashup applications with AIR.

Developing Mashup Air Apps: Consuming Flickr Web Services

By Marco Casario
March 10, 2009

Excerpted from Chapter 18 of the Adobe AIR 1.5 Cookbook. Mashup applications are based on the possibility of consuming remote data sources, and to create one, you need a good understanding of the APIs available. AIR offers even greater possibilities for creating mashup applications and widgets. With AIR, you can go beyond all the sandbox security of the browser and add advanced features to the application to interact with the file system or local storage with SQLite. This chapter demonstrates how to integrate the Flickr, Yahoo Maps, and Twitter web services to create desktop mashup applications with AIR.

Flex 101: Accessing A Web Service

By Andrew Trice
March 6, 2009

For this post, I decided to change things up a bit. Rather than go explore complex application patterns or data visualization, we're going back to basics. We will be covering how to make a basic application that makes a call to a web service and retrieves data.

Service Communications with Silverlight

By John Papa
March 1, 2009

Silverlight can talk to a number of types of web services using REST or SOAP, returning JSON or XML, or even communicating with RSS feeds. Its important to evaluate the type of service you need before developing it.

Getting Started with Silverlight 2

Getting Started with Silverlight 2
By Kathryn Barrett
February 18, 2009

You've learned how Silverlight can produce stylish interfaces and highly interactive applications in a variety of browsers, and now you want to build a Silverlight application. Not just a bouncing ball, an embedded video, or a spiffy-looking series of buttons, but a walking, talking, fully functional line-of-business application. Of course, you still want the snazzy interface, too. The good news is that you can have it all with Silverlight 2. The following excerpt is from John Papa's new book, Data-Driven Services with Silverlight 2.

Building RESTful Services with XQuery and XRX

By Kurt Cagle
January 24, 2009

I've been banging on the RESTful services/XRX bandwagon for a while now, and the good folks at O'Reilly have kindly consented to let me get out the entire trap drum set for an O'Reilly Webinar entitled "Building RESTful Services with XQuery and XRX".

SOA is Dead? It's About Time!

By Kurt Cagle
January 13, 2009

Anne Thomas Manes of the Burton Group raised quite a few hackles in the IT press yesterday when she asserted that SOA is Dead. Anne has the chops to talk on the subject - beyond her respectable career as an SOA Analyst for the Burton Group, she was also a former CTO of Systinet, an SOA governance company that eventually was bought up by Hewlett Packard, and was one of the early architects of the WS-* architecture ... so when she says "It's dead, Jim", people listen.

Why the AWS Console is Good for Cloud Tool Vendors

By George Reese
January 9, 2009

The release of the Amazon Web Services console has had a number of people predicting doom for cloud tools providers. On the contrary, by removing a barrier to experimentation that has kept people out of the cloud, the Amazon Web Services console should bring more people in the cloud and benefit tools providers whose value propositions are beyond Amazon's core value proposition.

SOA Still Alive and Well--Sell it to the Business

By David A. Chappell
January 8, 2009

In case you need to catch up, Anne Thomas Manes of Burton Group declared that "SOA met its demise on January 1, 2009, when it was wiped out by the catastrophic impact of the economic recession!".


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