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It’s time for another “Ask the Editor” post today. Thanks to everyone who sent in their questions; keep sending them in (via form at the end). It’s great getting the opportunity to help out with your web-related queries.

Some of the topics covered this week include protecting the data you store in web apps from potential loss by either app developer mistakes or closure of the app, task management apps and how to retain users for developers.

Read on for plenty of handy web knowledge; hopefully you’ll find most of it useful for your own situation as well!

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We’d like to say a big thank you to this month’s Web.AppStorm sponsors, and the great software they create! If you’re interested in advertising, you can order a slot through BuySellAds.

You might also consider a Quick Look submission, an easy way to showcase your app to all our readers.

Paymo Time Tracker – Paymo is a time tracking and online invoicing tool that can be used online or on your desktop. Paymo offers you a clear picture of how time is spent in your organization.

TaskAnt – TaskAnt saves your time and your team’s time on project and task management. Especially for assigning, tracking and searching tasks.

dashboard – dashboard is a powerful lead management system.

Alertful – Alertful reminds you of important events by email.

GetApp.com – Review, Compare and Evaluate business applications. In Getapp.com you will find enterprise software, SaaS and Cloud Computing solutions with user reviews.

Media Temple – Media Temple hosts websites. Big and Small. For years they’ve taken complex technology and simplified it for the everyday website owner. Their products are designed to be powerful, affordable and relevant.

Dealy – Dealy lets website owners create and distribute their deals of the days across the internet, facebook, twitter, SMS text, email and their websites.

Intervals – Intervals is web-based time tracking, task management, and project management for small businesses that need to know where all of their time is going. Includes workflow, timesheets, reporting, document storage, and invoicing.

JotForm – First Web Based WYSIWYG Form Builder. Create and publish web forms using your browser. Get responses via E-mail.

FusionCharts – Animated & Interactive Flash Charts, Graphs and Maps for web applications. Offers 75 chart types and 530 maps that can be used with any script and database. A complete reporting experience with drill-down, AJAX-enabled charts and one-click chart export.

Mozilla’s Paul Rouget made a splash on the web this week with the question, “Is IE9 a modern browser?” and a most definitive answer, “NO”. The post makes a great argument as to why IE9 is “more modern, but not really modern.”

And of course the post’s accompanying infographic is well worth checking out for a more visual perspective on the subject. Microsoft responded with several valid points of their own on the subject, adding more heat to the continual browser wars.

Many of us are biased for one reason or another, while it’s difficult for others to really say what a “modern browser” is since it isn’t clearly defined. Personally, I’m biased and don’t believe IE9 will be a “modern”, competitive browser for any other reason than it’s what has been used for so long, by so many, but IE — I can only hope — will continue it’s market share decline.

What do you think? Is IE9 a modern browser? Once fully released, do you think it will compete with Chrome, Safari or Firefox?

Killer invoicing app Ronin has released an HTML5-built iPhone app for users to track time on the go and sync with their Ronin account. Because the app is built with HTML5, an Android version will be a relatively simple addition, though with a UI tweaked for the different screen sizes.

If you aren’t familiar with Ronin, be sure to give our review a look: Smooth & Customizable Invoicing With Ronin. The app received a fantastic 9/10 rating, so be sure to give it a look.

Read on for more iPhone app and lifetime Solo Plan giveaway details. Updated: Giveaway winners announced!

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We’re kicking off another new post series today, called “Ask the Editor”. This is a great way for you to ask questions about Web software (or related hardware) and AppStorm and I will share my responses. Whether you’re dying to know where you should store your photos, are seeking the best of the best apps, or you want to know how to accomplish something with a web app, I’m here to help!

I’ve had some great questions submitted this week, so read on to find out what my responses are (and how you can submit your own questions for the next article!)

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It’s true; a picture is worth a thousand words. That’s the reason there are so many screenshots in AppStorm articles AppStorm and across the Tuts+ network. To keep your audience engaged, your presentation has to be visually appealing. Once you grab the audience with a striking visual, you can connect with them on an emotional level.

These days I get questions from people who want to move from Microsoft PowerPoint just because it doesn’t do justice to the content on their slides. One of my recommendations to them is SlideRocket. Today SlideRocket has introduced a few new tools to its already well stacked visual arsenal.

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If you haven’t noticed (or don’t visit the sites), Gawker launched an all new design across their sites (Gizmodo, Lifehacker, etc) that’s quite different. Many people think it’s terrible and a poor decision. I can’t help but see various similarities between the new design and designs you’ll see on tablets such as the iPad.

Gizmodo

Gizmodo

Performance issues aside (which are being worked out by their staff), the new design’s usability makes more sense for tablet-type devices than the prior blog style design. Personally, I like the new design more than the prior one, even on my desktop. It makes more sense from a usability standpoint; no new page loads or tabs when navigating to a post, a quick overview of recent or popular posts, etc.

The question, though, is whether or not people really want mobile web UX when they’re on their desktop computer? I think the web and computer technology is slowly evolving into more dynamic, interactive and “go anywhere” hardware and software, so I see designs such as Gawker’s as an expected step across all platforms.

As you can tell, I clearly prefer the newer design and the idea of mobile web UX making its way onto the desktop, replacing our older viewing methods. What do you think? Do you prefer iPad-type web designs over their desktop counterparts while on the desktop? Or do you think desktop web UX will, and should, always be different than other platforms?

We’d like to say a big thank you to this month’s Web.AppStorm sponsors, and the great software they create! If you’re interested in advertising, you can order a slot through BuySellAds.

You might also consider a Quick Look submission, an easy way to showcase your app to all our readers.

Paymo Time Tracker – Paymo is a time tracking and online invoicing tool that can be used online or on your desktop. Paymo offers you a clear picture of how time is spent in your organization.

TaskAnt – TaskAnt saves your time and your team’s time on project and task management. Especially for assigning, tracking and searching tasks.

dashboard – dashboard is a powerful lead management system.

YaRooms – Yarooms web application offers meeting & conference room scheduling with functional booking system for rooms, management of room reservations and much more.

GetApp.com – Review, Compare and Evaluate business applications. In Getapp.com you will find enterprise software, SaaS and Cloud Computing solutions with user reviews.

Media Temple – Media Temple hosts websites. Big and Small. For years they’ve taken complex technology and simplified it for the everyday website owner. Their products are designed to be powerful, affordable and relevant.

Dealy – Dealy lets website owners create and distribute their deals of the days across the internet, facebook, twitter, SMS text, email and their websites.

Intervals – Intervals is web-based time tracking, task management, and project management for small businesses that need to know where all of their time is going. Includes workflow, timesheets, reporting, document storage, and invoicing.

JotForm – First Web Based WYSIWYG Form Builder. Create and publish web forms using your browser. Get responses via E-mail.

FusionCharts – Animated & Interactive Flash Charts, Graphs and Maps for web applications. Offers 75 chart types and 530 maps that can be used with any script and database. A complete reporting experience with drill-down, AJAX-enabled charts and one-click chart export.

We’re going to be kicking off a new series next week, called “Ask the Editor”. This will run a few times each month, and give you a chance to submit questions to be answered by our editorial team (and a few expert writers, if we need some assistance!)

Whether you have a question related to web apps, browsers, or Web.AppStorm in general, I’d really love to hear it! I’ll do my best to answer a series of diverse questions that will be interesting for everyone.

Without further ado, here’s a quick form to submit your question for next week’s post. Hopefully you’ll be seeing my response up on AppStorm soon. Thanks for contributing!


I love Gmail, as do many others. The other day I found myself asking the question, “Would I pay for this app? And if so, how much would I be willing to pay?” I’ve recently been going through the many internet apps I pay for, asking myself whether the the cost warrants the value I get out of the app. Several app subscriptions have since been canceled.

Going through the many apps I pay for monthly (and some yearly) got me wondering which apps are absolutely vital to my day-to-day tasks. Gmail (well, Google Apps & Gmail) is one of them. For the most part though, we’ve all grown accustomed to free email services and many other web apps on a freemium basis. But should we always continue to expect that?

I’m curious as to how many of you would be willing to pay a monthly, or perhaps yearly, fee for Gmail. Or would you simply switch to another email provider? If you would pay, how much would you be willing to fork over?

Personally, I would pay in a heartbeat. I’ve yet to find an email app I prefer more than Gmail and it has definitely rooted itself quite deeply into my daily workflow and online life. As for how much, that’s hard to say.

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