Posts Tagged:Internet

rfp-robotRFP ROBOT: Website Request for Proposal Generator

The time has come for a new website (or website redesign), which means you need to write a website request for proposal or web RFP. A Google search produces a few examples, but they vary wildly and don’t seem to speak really to your goals for developing or redesigning a new website. You need to write a website RFP that will clearly articulate your needs and generate responses from the best website designers and developers out there. But how?

Have no fear, RFP Robot is here. He will walk you through a step-by-step process to help you work through the details of your project and create a PDF formatted website design RFP that will provide the information vendors need to write an accurate bid. RFP Robot will tell you what info you should include, point out pitfalls, and give examples.


Make It Rain

https://medium.com/media/e049c1d99323c5afa8e5d8a327472f1a/hrefMatt Stock is a business owner who loves marketing and has embraced the unglamorous job of selling a pretty mundane service: basement waterproofing. He’s tried everything from Yellow Pages to billboards to Internet advertising at U.S. Waterproofing, his 60-year-old family business. But Matt faced one of his greatest challenges as a business owner and a marketer in 2012, when Illinois was hit with a drought.https://medium.com/media/13eca3d7857d9c22d0646d2a6d6cee24/hrefIllustration by Nate OttoTranscript[SOUND OF RAIN]MATT STOCK: Music to our ears is when rain occurs. I was hoping on your way over here there’d be a raincloud follow you. My name’s Matthew Stock. I am the president of U.S. Waterproofing.When there’s water in a basement, unless someone has prior experience, it’s not easy to diagnose it. Even for us when we come there, we’re not there the second it rains, we have to ask a lot of questions, use a certain process to figure out where it’s coming from.…

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What Not to Wearable: Part 1

With every advance in connected technology, potential new features abound. Sensors monitor your fitness performance or sleep quality. Haptic vibrations in insoles guide you to take a left or a right, allowing you to navigate without looking at a screen. NFC technology in a ring allows you to pay for a purchase without fumbling around in a bag or combing through pockets. These technologies allow our accessories to become devices for input and output. All this sounds exciting, freeing even. These innovations could allow us to turn our focus away from screens and back to the material world, to be simultaneously connected to technology while also present in the moment. And that’s incredible. However, this also presents new challenges. Besides the multitude of complex technical problems we must address, from charging and battery life to data networks and security, we will also have to solve some key strategic and design problems. When Fashion and Tech Collide Connected technology has migrated from appliances,…

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Searching for Clean(er) Searches

Inspired Magazine Inspired Magazine – creativity & inspiration daily If there is one year for positive change, look no further, it’s 2017. Because there’s no better time than now to do something, but also because this world, on so many levels (well, you know, you’ve been there too) was seriously derailed in the past couple of years. You are probably involved already, struggling with small or large steps to make a difference in the world, to have a positive impact, minimize your carbon footprint, leave the air breathable and the water drinkable for your kids and their kids. You probably cycle, volunteer, decided to run for office (yay!), sign petitions, enjoy the outdoors. But by the end of your life you will still have spent a few good years staring into a screen. Due to nature of work or for entertainment only, it’s gonna be years, trust me. They add…

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Debugging Tips and Tricks

Writing code is only one small piece of being a developer. In order to be efficient and capable at our jobs, we must also excel at debugging. When I dedicate some time to learning new debugging skills, I often find I can move much quicker, and add more value to the teams I work on. I have a few tips and tricks I rely on pretty heavily and found that I give the same advice again and again during workshops, so here’s a compilation of some of them, as well as some from the community. We’ll start with some core tenants and then drill down to more specific examples. Main Concepts Isolate the Problem Isolation is possibly the strongest core tenant in all of debugging. Our codebases can be sprawling, with different libraries, frameworks, and they can include many contributors, even people who aren’t working on the project anymore. Isolating…

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3 Viral UX Trends To Define 2017

We are living in an age when digital technology has taken over daily human life. Gone are the days when we feel like new technology came from aliens – these days, tech breakthroughs are things that we have come to embrace as they make our lives easier. Part of this evolving industry is the emergence of user experience (UX) and the rise of UX trends. If you are old enough to remember a popular animated TV show back in the day called “The Jetsons”, then take a moment to realize how technology has developed. For instance, talking appliances that were considered fiction back then are now becoming more real, thanks to the Internet of things. In fact, the race is on for whoever gets the brightest ideas in coming up with things that make life easier. Aside from developing outstanding gadgets and tech-upgraded things, user experience always comes up as…

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Achieve & Acquia Spark Conversation around Machine Learning and Healthcare

For more than ten years, Achieve, an Acquia partner, has been bringing innovative portal solutions to healthcare providers with a user-centered focus. They make the most complex web development projects possible for companies like Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, Universal Music Group, Dexcom, The Recording Academy, and Scripps Translational Science Institute. Achieve sought out Acquia to participate in their latest Digital Health Innovations (DHI) event because of Acquia’s involvement with technical trends like machine learning that are currently impacting the healthcare industry. Katherine Bailey, Principal Data Scientist at Acquia, was the featured speaker at the event. Like past DHI events, this one continued Achieve’s aim of bringing the San Diego tech, healthcare, and life science communities together through thought leadership. Katherine Bailey taking questions from the audience at DHI Machine Learning Today The emergence of touch points in our digital world including the Internet of Things (IoT), the multitude of devices…

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5 Basic Design Strategies To Create An Effective Voice User Interface

It was in the early 2000s when interactive voice response (IVR) became popular. It all started with a touch-tone/voice hybrid, which was quite primitive back then. In this article, we will talk about IVR and how to use this technology to improve the voice user interface for your business. What is IVR? IVR provides a means of communication for many companies. The technology makes it possible for people to book flights, get stock quotes, transfer money, and receive traffic information. Think of it as the automated voice prompts when you call a hotline, but with a more engaging and interactive interface. The IVR came about as a result of increased volume of calls received by businesses that wanted to devise a way to handle the increasing traffic of calls. Today, there are over 2.5 million IVR ports servicing businesses. On the average, 15 percent of inbound calls use self-service menus.…

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A Life without Twitter

Can you imagine a life without Twitter? I can. I’m not sure I could have said that just a few years ago but it’s becoming easier and easier to not only imagine it but also, perhaps, desire it. I was a little late to the game when I first joined Twitter but I wasn’t the first one in my social network to try leaving it all behind. I’ve taken extended breaks from the network and even quit a handful of times, always to come back. But now, it feels like the next time I quit will be my last. Twitter, as a social device, died a long time ago. Now it’s just a cheap utility. And, unfortunately for Twitter, it’s not a fundamental utility either. What it feels like is one of the tack-on services that cable companies try to opt you in for when you sign-up for basic home service.…

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Personalizing Healthcare: How Omni-Channel Solutions Can Transform the Patient Experience (VIDEO)

Healthcare is the ultimate service industry. But rapid advances in digital technology combined with patients expecting online experiences that are on par with their other brand interactions, have caused healthcare providers to reassess how to better meet patient expectations in the digital age. If you are one of those healthcare providers, don’t panic. There are some fairly simple things you can do to address this evolution. But it is important to note that data from the Pew Research Center shows that the percentage of Americans who use the internet shot up by 105% between 2010-2015. This includes an influx of tech-savvy baby boomers whose medical needs will only increase, and younger generations who have come to expect personalized digital experiences from all their service providers, including healthcare. An incredible 81% of patients report dissatisfaction with the healthcare services they receive, and only 34% feel like their healthcare providers understand their…

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Shame the Confirmshamers

When you deactivate your Facebook account, you aren’t politely bid adieu. Instead, you’re shown pictures of yourself with all of the people who will “miss” you now that you’re no longer sharing your life with them on Facebook. Putting aside the plain presumption of this tactic (BethAnne, shown in the fourth image, then my girlfriend and now my wife, most certainly saw more of me after I deactivated my account), what fascinates me about this screen is the same thing that prompted me to leave Facebook in the first place: the system understands “friendship” only in terms of the digital information provided to it. If I am no longer an entity in the system, my “friends” in the system will no longer be connected to me. I’ll no longer be able “send BethAnne a message.” This is a screenshot of Facebook’s account deactivation screen in 2011 (a friend who recently…

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Looking Back at SXSW 2017 with Viget

If you were in Austin last week, you may have seen us running around, giving workshops, or enjoying some local eats. SXSW 2017 was a blast, and we were able to catch up with friends and the latest tech. Here’s a quick teaser of our trip: Themes We arrived on the festival’s first day to fantastic weather and the smell of delicious tacos. There were thousands of talks during the interactive segment, covering many different topics. However, there were a few popular themes that stood out: Virtual, Augmented, and Mixed Reality (VR/AR/MR) Last year, we said Virtual, Augmented, and Mixed Reality would blow up, and we saw some ingenious uses of these technologies. Related products were highlights of the expo, and many speakers focused on the intersection of immersive storytelling and VR/AR/MR. Innovators are now using this technology to sell homes, share immersive journalism, enhance music experiences, explore space, and…

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Avoidable Design Flaws That Can Hurt Your Site

Inspired Magazine Inspired Magazine – creativity & inspiration daily The web was supposed to get better,  that was the promise.  And you’d think it would have, with all the increased awareness of accessibility and usability considerations.  But strangely enough, we’re more than 25 years in, and things are actually getting worse in general.  How could this be so? It can’t be blamed on education.  Every course in Internet Design and Development worth its salt covers the fundamentals of good design principles, usability, and accessibility.  It can’t be blamed on the engineering standards, because the W3C guidelines are stricter and more clearly defined than ever before.  Nor can it be blamed on technology, because the technology is more supportive of developing high quality sites, not less. No, the answer to this paradox is actually quite simple.  It’s because designers have had their power stripped away by the demands of marketers and…

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YouTube and Trolls

Simply because I’ve been spending time uploading at least one new video to YouTube a day I’ve now had the distinct pleasure of having internet trolls spend time commenting on them. Strangely, unlike my previous social networks or digital properties my reaction has been distinctly different! Instead of getting upset or annoyed I’m actually pleased. Typical. I think this is because of the fact that I’ve simply grown accustomed to this behavior on the internet. The longer I remain a committed and consistent netizen I will encounter folks who have no problem voicing their opinion, however rude and ridiculous it might be. This is just how it is. My instinct is to immediately wonder if they would have said the exact same thing to me if we were sharing a table in the meatspace, but, it’s a hopeless mental exercise. I bet some of them would. But in regards to YouTube, a…

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Parents: YouTube

There are a lot of things I don’t like about this article, mostly because it feels a bit more political than it needs to be, but, that’s probably my insecurity with such things. But, it was these few things that really caused me to pause for a moment and consider my own decisions as a parent: As events like this underscore, you can’t trust a YouTube channel about games is merely a YouTube channel about games. In the personality-based Internet, politics can be fair game. And… There are no easy answers. If anything, they’re going to get more complicated. If Jafari’s racist comments happen on Twitter, does that mean my daughter shouldn’t watch his YouTube videos? Can I be fully confident he’s not slipping that rhetoric, however subtle, in there? My gut tells me it’d be time to move on—or, at least, to pay closer attention and engage with her about what’s…

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19 Amazing Native Advertising Ad Examples

It’s easy to hear the phrase “native advertising” and think, “Psh.” Native advertising can sometimes get a bad reputation, especially when advertisers (or publishers) make big mistakes with how and what kind of content they present. Case in point: The Atlantic being forced to eat crow and repent after publishing an editorial that appeared like it was written by the Atlantic editorial team, but in reality came from the Church of Scientology. Certainly bad PR, but it did inspire some good spinoffs. Now there are reports that the FTC plans to force publishers to explicitly signpost when native advertisements exist alongside normal content. #FakeNews is the mantra of the day. Despite this, there’s still one very good reason to not give up on native ads. Why people are wrong about native advertisements One of the big criticisms of native ads hinges on the fact that they “look” like normal content…

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2 Years, 9K Posts, and 7M Views Later…

2 years ago, yesterday, I booted up another experimental property to test a number of different hypotheses. I didn’t have any expectations but, like most things, I hoped that the results would be net-positive. A year ago I shared the results from the first 365 days in which I was able to publish over 5,000 blog posts and achieve over 1,000,000 pageviews. What would the next year bring? I’ll cut to the chase and get to the top-level details, right? So, here you go: Lifetime # of Posts Published: 9,070 Lifetime Views: ~7,000,000 Oh yeah. Yikes. Actually, to be fair, I always run at least 2 analytics packages and Google Analytics shows 6.7M while WordPress’ Jetpack shows a little over 7M (achieved just a few days ago!). And, per usual, I want to provide some evidence, so, here you go – the actual screenshots from both analytics systems: Google Analytics: All Time Views…

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Designing a website with your customer service in mind

Ways to design a website with your customers in mindAny designer who is creating a website for a business needs to have customer experience in mind. A website is never going to be successful if users cannot find the information they need, or if the content is not engaging. If you are creating a website for your business you need to put yourself in the customer’s head space and think about what they need you to provide. In this article, we are going to talk about some of the features that you can include on your website, in order to ensure it provides the best possible customer experience, Enabling customers to help themselvesPeople visiting your website are bound to have questions from time to time. They may want to know about your returns policy, or they may want to check if they can use an online wallet such as PayPal…

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SXSW 2017 Sessions You Shouldn’t Miss

While the world is plenty occupied with current events of a political nature, members of the tech community await this weekend’s SXSW. And like any good Viget tradition, we’ll be sending our own small contingent to give talks, attend panels, conduct workshops, and administer high fives. In addition to highlighting our very self-promoted talks, here are 7 panels / talks we are targeting for 2017: Cozy with Cookies: Our Brain & Behavioral Targeting Recommended by: Ben Travis When: Saturday, March 11, 12:30PM – 1:30PM Where: Hyatt Regency Austin, Zilker Ballroom 3-4, 208 Barton Springs Rd. Cookies are crumbs of information that we leave behind on the internet. According to a study published in the JCR, Oxford University Press, behavioral targeting can affect our sense of worth. Cookies act like comfort food for our brain. We can have a cozy relationship with our cookies in our little bubbles inside the Internet.…

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Copywriting Q&A: How to Find the Time to Learn Copywriting

One of the biggest obstacles to making a significant change in your life is finding the time to do it. Today, we’re going to break down exactly how to learn copywriting and build your copywriting career. Today’s question comes from May G., who asks, “I really want to learn copywriting. I think it could be a great career for me. But I work full-time, I’m raising two kids, and I still need to sleep! How can I make the time to learn copywriting? Or am I just a lost cause?” Finding the time to do anything is, first, a matter of priorities. (And, please understand, this is coming from someone who definitely does not always master her priorities.) If you want to make something happen, you have to make it a priority, plain and simple. You have to choose it above other things. When it’s between spending time watching NCIS and…

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