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In an era where the web has invaded into all dimensions of life, understanding the language of the web has become important for people to actively participate in shaping the digital world, to change from passive viewers to “webmakers”. This idea led Mozilla to develop three different tools, The Popcorn Maker to “supercharge web video” (read our review), Thimble to “Make and share your own web page” and X-Ray Goggles to “Explore and remix any web page”.
Of these the tools, Thimble and X – Ray Goggles were developed with the purpose of helping aspiring “webmakers” familiarize themselves with the language of the web. Let’s take a look
Dominder is a very specific app that does one thing: manage your domains. Website owners often own more than one domain, and some of us own or have to keep track of twenty or more. While domain registrars will notify you of renewal time, they don’t check for downtime or make sure your domain hasn’t been blacklisted.
That is where Dominder comes in. Let’s see if Dominder is the “all-in-one solution to manage websites” it claims to be.
Most sites these days are powered by a CMS, and hand-coding a site from plain HTML files would seem terribly archaic. And yet, for most sites, the average CMS is a huge overkill. There’s so much to them, it’s sometimes hard to change the tiniest thing. And rich editing … well, for the most part, the world would be better off without it.
There’s been a recent rise of simple CMSes, ones that use just plain text files with Markdown files to make a full website. As a writer who writes in Markdown, those are terribly interesting to me. One in particular stood out to me as a simple yet powerful flat-file option, and it was so nice that instead of just trying it out, I switched my entire site to it, and still use it months later.
Over the past few years as a Software Engineer, I’ve worked on several Enterprise grade projects. That means tight, ridiculous deadlines on our part. When that happens, no one, QA leads included, cares about quality as long as your code is in the code base on time. No, the regret comes later when all hell break loose.
Once I worked with a guy who checked in some half-cooked code just to close the issue for then before it sets the alarm bell ringing within. However, that particular piece of code completely went on to run for hours and blew up in our face when the app went live. By then a slew of modules were built over this, and we (cough I cough) had to revisit it later on, make numerous changes to the design before that flow was usable. In this process we wasted several thousand dollars which could have been avoided if we had some sort of process in place. Sadly, most of the software world works the same way.
Big Deal! Hire a performance guy and optimize the DB performance, some might suggest. As valid as the idea is, not all bottlenecks are I/O related, though traditionally this is where most applications fail. It could be due to a poor coding as well or lack of sufficient hardware power. NewRelic is a service which analyses these issues and help you optimize your product. Does it work? Join me after the jump to find out.
Have you ever wanted to use a character or symbol in a document or program, but not known what it’s called or how to find it? You could trawl through a list or chart, trying to recognize it among hundreds or thousands of others. Or you could point your web browser to Shapecatcher.com.
Few single-purpose web apps are as elegant and useful as Shapecatcher. It takes your hand — or mouse — drawn approximation of the character in question, then spits out a list of possible matches. It’ll save you time, make this one little aspect of your life so much easier, and wow you with its ability to recognize the crudest of drawings.
Running a website which is making money is hard. While trying to manage products, prices and profit you also need to look at specific orders which are going to be most beneficial towards your business’ revenue. However, normal forms seem to only allow customers to tell you small amounts of information.
Expanding this form further and giving customers the ability to personalize their needs to you would be something which is highly beneficial. This in turn would allow you to prioritize these certain customers and maximize your profit. Convertable is a web app which achieves this difficult task in a simple and reasonably priced package.
Website heatmaps have revolutionised how major companies, particularly the ones trying to sell you something, design their website. For those of us unfamiliar with heatmaps they’re graphical overlays which demonstrate ‘high’ usage parts of a webpage.
In the early days of the Internet such information seemed unnecessary. But now, people click a lot faster than before with most webpages only open for a matter of seconds. This is thanks to both increased user browsing ability and faster connections.
So with the likes of Amazon making use of ‘Big Data’ to capture your every twitch of the mouse how can us little guys still make a buck from our website. Well MouseStats claim that they offer highly accurate heatmaps to small users. But I was sceptical. Heatmaps have been reserved for larger companies involving expensive software packages. If MouseStats actually can offer heatmaps for your website are they any use to small businesses?
Having a website is an obvious must for any business these days, but for small companies, even basic shared hosting can seem expensive for a basic site. Of course you can sign up for an EC2 account and host your website there for free if your bandwidth and storage requirements are low, but one has to deal with a myriad of configurations to even get started. When all you were looking to do was host a simple site online, the initial learning curve of just hosting your site can be maddening.
Enter Dropbox. Wait, Dropbox? Yup, you heard that right. Allow me to demonstrate how to turn your Dropbox account into a static web host, using Site44.
Wireframing and mockups have become the de rigeur in today’s world of web and app development — it’s a process that keeps communication clear and helps everyone (clients, designers, developers, and even UX folks) get on the same page on a project. One of the best tools for the job is Balsamiq, a suite of apps and plugins that encourage rapid yet detailed wireframe creation, sharing and collaboration.
Today we’ll take a look at the suite’s newest app, a web app named myBalsamiq. It’s packed with features that not only make prototyping easy for designers, but also allow coworkers and clients to share feedback and discuss ideas effortlessly. And hey, it looks like it might even be fun to use. Let’s sign up for an account and see how it works.