Tag Archives: Internet

Get Firefox Home on Your iPhone!

Firefox Home, a free application, is now available for download on your iPhone or iPod Touch.

Firefox Home provides access to your Firefox desktop history, bookmarks and open tabs on your iPhone. Get up and go and have exactly what you are looking for on the Web on your iPhone or iPod Touch. Firefox Home uses your browser data, securely synced from Firefox on your desktop to the cloud, to let you search and browse quickly and efficiently. You can view the sites you want directly in Firefox Home, open them in Mobile Safari or share them with friends via email. Your Firefox data is private and only you have access to it.

Quick Start:

If you have Firefox Sync on your desktop, skip to step #3.

  1. Install Firefox Sync, a free add-on for Firefox, on your desktop.
  2. Restart Firefox and follow prompts to create an account with both a password and a secret phrase.
  3. Go the App Store on your iPhone and search for “Firefox Home” or install it directly from iTunes.
  4. Launch Firefox Home on your iPhone. You’ll be prompted to enter your Firefox Sync account info. Enter your username, password and Secret Phrase and tap “Done.”
  5. Enjoy!

More detailed set-up instructions are available, as well as a answers to frequently asked questions.

ChromeVis a new Chrome Extension for Users with low Vision

From text that is too small to read, to user interfaces that do not offer keyboard navigation options, users with special needs face a lot of challenges when trying to access websites they are interested in. Google Chrome team believe that extensions can complement the work the team is  doing to make Google Chrome more accessible and can help users with disabilities turn the web from an often unwelcoming place to an environment they can truly enjoy.

Today Google is  launching a new category of featured extensions under the name “Accessibility”. On this page you’ll find ChromeVis a brand new extension from Google that allows users with low vision to magnify and change the color of selected text. You will also find extensions like Chrome Daltonize that can help color blind users to see more details in web pages or gleeBox that provides alternatives to actions traditionally performed via the mouse such as clicking, scrolling and selecting text fields.

All users can benefit from these extensions – not just users with disabilities. To encourage more developers to incorporate best practices in accessibility when designing extensions, Google’ve open sourced the code behind Chrome Vis and created relevant documentation. You can get more information in the Chromium blog.

One can develop a lot of great extensions to benefit users with special needs. Google plan to release a few more in the next months so stay tuned for more updates.

Google Chrome now support Adobe Flash Player

In Google’s most recent stable release of Google Chrome, they talked about beta-testing Adobe Flash Player integration into Chrome. They’ve enable this integration by default in the stable channel of Chrome. To read more about this integration, check out the Chromium blog.

In testing Flash Player integration into Chrome, the Chrome team admittedly spent many, many fun hours with a few of our favorite Flash-based indie games. So as a side project, they teamed up with a few creative folks to build Chrome FastBall, a Flash-based game built on top of the YouTube platform.

If you’re using Chrome, your browser should be automatically updated with Flash Player integration as of this week. And if you haven’t yet tried Chrome, download this newest stable release of the browser at google.com/chrome and take it for a test drive!

Firefox to implement calc() in CSS3

I’ve just read last week that Firefox would implement calc() in their new version of Firefox. It’s not out in any publicly released version yet but it is coming as they talked about it on their developers blog.

Why should you care?

Ever had an element that needed to have a percentage width with padding? Up until now, because of the way the box model works in modern browsers, you had to wrap the content in a container to which you’d apply the padding. That’s because when you define padding to an element the value is added to the width, which is the proper way of doing it.

Now the thing is that percentage width don’t mix well with fixed padding values, that where calc() comes into play.

Lets say you have a box with the following css rules:

#box {
padding: 20px;
width: 60%;
}

If that box is in a container 1000 pixels wide, the box would be 640 pixels wide total, that’s not what you want, that’s not 60% wide! You coud use calc() to achieve the desired result:

#box {
width: -moz-calc(60% - 40px);
}

You can even be wild and do basic calculations in there:

#box {
width: -moz-calc(60% - 2 * 20px);
}

Taking it further

What would be even cooler is if you could get the actual padding values as a variable in calc(). Something like:

#box {
width: -moz-calc(60% - (padding-left + padding-right));
}

This way you could even forget about updating your width value when you play with your padding.

Oh well, one day maybe, now let’s just see if other browser vendors implement something of the like. Let’s not forget this is not part of the W3C CSS3 specs.

Is it a feature you were waiting for?

Evolving from beta to stable with a faster version of Chrome

After a bit of evolution and lots of work by the Google team, they thrilled the world by introducing a new stable version of Chrome for Windows, Mac and Linux. Since last December, they’ve been chipping away at bugs and building in new features to get the Mac and Linux versions caught up with the Windows version, and now they finally announce that the Mac and Linux versions are ready for prime time.

Google Chrome for Windows

Google Chrome for Mac

Google Chrome for Linux

The performance bar for all three versions keeps getting higher: today’s new stable release for Windows, Mac and Linux is our fastest yet, incorporating one of Google’s most significant speed improvements to date. Chrome is  improved by213 percent and 305 percent in Javascript performance by the V8 and SunSpider benchmarks since their very first beta, back in Chrome’s Cretaceous period (September 2008). To mark these speed improvements, Google also released a series of three unconventional speed tests for the browser:

(If you’re interested in how Google pitted Chrome against the forces of a potato gun, lightning, and the speed of sound, take a look behind-the-scenes in this video, or read the full technical details in the video’s description drop-down in YouTube).

You may also notice that today’s new stable release comes with a few new features, including the ability to synchronize browser preferences across computers, new HTML5 capabilities and a revamped bookmark manager. For more details, read on in the Google Chrome Blog.

If you haven’t tried Google Chrome since the stone age, check out this brand new stable release. If you’re already using Chrome, you’ll be automatically updated to this new version soon. To try it right away, download the latest version at google.com/chrome.

5 Ways to get your website noticed

Your website is just one of the billion sites parked on the World Wide Web. Chances are, you don’t think yours will ever get noticed.
We hear your cries for cyber attention. Here are five ways to get people clicking on to your site.

1.) Make sure it’s professional looking.
No one likes looking at website that reminds them of a book report they wrote back in school. Invest in learning a good web design program (Dreamweaver MX and Microsoft Frontpage are good picks), and let your creative juices flow. Make sure it’s compelling, well-designed, and organized. People don’t exactly find it fun to weed through haystacks of cyber files to get the information that they want.
On that note, don’t make it a heavy site. Putting up some flash intros may be great eye candy, but the average internet surfer only waits 10 seconds for a page to load, and then they’re off to the next.

2.) Put your URL on every search engine possible.
Putting your URL on business cards and bugging your family and friends to check out your site won’t exactly increase traffic. Submitting it to search engines will make it easier for people to find you, provided that your web page carries the topics they’re looking for. To understand how a search engine works, think of it as a “spider”: it crawls through your website, picking up words and information which would later be indexed in the search engine’s database. So make sure you pepper your site with keywords you think are relevant to what people are looking for. Web directories, like Yahoo!, are operated by humans who actually categorize the websites themselves.
If you don’t feel like submitting your website to numerous directories, consider subscribing to sites like www.submit-it.com, who, for a fee, will automatically submit your site to search engines and directories for you.

3.) Link everywhere.
Find other sites that carry similar content as yours and ask to exchange links. Create banners to be placed on other peoples’ websites, and offer to the same for them on your site. Add your URL on your e-mail signature. Join webrings if you must—there’s nothing like strength in numbers.

4.) Advertise offline.
The world of cyberspace isn’t enough to get you noticed. Write up press releases and send them to local newspapers and magazines. Print out fliers to be distributed. Just make sure that your site is already up and running to avoid giving people a bad impression (no one likes getting pumped up for something only to get disappointed).

5.) Interact with your readers.

Put up forums or message boards for your visitors to interact with each other. Chat rooms are often time-consuming for some, while message boards allows them to check back every so often for replies. Create an e-mail list so you can update your visitors about new developments, and always be open to feedback—that’s what will make your site even better.

10 Tips For Web Success

The webmaster’s biggest job is to get their traffic up and keep customers/visitors coming back. Building the site is one thing, but simply building and posting a website does not guarantee traffic. In fact, a website could be beautiful and an example of all the latest technology and still not attract a single visitor if not promoted correctly. Here are 10 tips to guide you to success with your website.

(1) The internet is a new medium.

At least compared to print, it is. A website is a waste if it simply re-hashes something which could easily be put into print. Don’t have the site be just an online brochure. Put up features which take advantage of the internet as a medium of communication. Filter information for them. Provide search capability. Provide interactivity with features like forums, quizzes and tools. Web visitors like to interact.

(2) Treat the Customer’s Time as Valuable.
When a person visits your website, you have their attention for that point in time. You either need to use it or you will lose it – fast. Most visitors have short attention spans, what you need to design your site homepage so that it grabs their attention and provides what they are looking for right away. Its like walking into a restaurant. If you walk in and just stand there and nobody comes to greet you, you might wonder what is happening. But, if the hostess comes and greets you right away and walks you to a table, then you will be there for awhile and eat. The same analogy goes for websites. Don’t over complicate your website homepage. Best results will be obtained if you make it very clear where to click to find what they need.

(3) Design the site for customers, not the company.
Your site needs to satisfy the needs of customers, not the company. So, don’t post content which is not really useful to the site’s customer. And avoid over-flattering marketing hype about the company. It inflates the ego of the company more than it helps your customer.

(4) Involve the Visitor.
Keep the visitor involved and make them feel like a valuable contributor. Actively ask for the feedback and suggestions. Ask for communication from your visitors and answer that communication swiftly. When getting that communication, capture their email address. This will allow you to communicate with them long after they have moved on and forgotten about you.

(5) Keep it Current.

You need to have content on your website which is timely and relevant to the customer’s life. Posting month-old news is not interesting. Posting dry product information which never changes is not interesting. Yes, you need to have product information and other information on your site that won’t change much, but you can also post more timely content. You can, for example, post content about how your products can be used in certain situations in life. Provide tips and techniques – things which are immediately applicable and solve a problem.

(6) Pay Attention to Form/Design.

Some sites simply over-do it on the eye-candy. Big graphics just for the sake of graphics often impress the site’s designer more than the visitor. Do not use graphics that are large and purposeless. Remember, some visitors may still be accessing your website via dial-up. Your site needs to load up quickly for all users. A slow website will cause your users to leave quickly. Also, pay attention to graphic and design size. Many web designers operate on fairly large screen resolutions and sometimes forget that even though a graphic looks great to you, it will appear enormous to somebody on a smaller resolution. On the flip side, don’t go too light on graphics. A site which is poorly designed and using the default font and no color is not very aesthetically pleasing. Any web visitor, whether they admit it or not, judges your company by your website unless they have something else to go on. A well-designed site communicates professionalism. A poor design makes the site seem like an afterthought.

(7) Promote.
When a visitor communicates to you via email, it is best to use a web form. not only will this keep your email address from being picked up by spammers, it will also allow you to ask your customers for their email address and then store that address for later use. Employ the “push/pull” marketing strategy. A visitor coming to your website is the pull, but later you want to push content back to them in the form of a newsletter or other promotional material. Start a mailing list and use it. Invite visitors to sign up. Promotion makes or breaks a business, and as long as you respect the ethical considerations of your mailing list, you should use it.

(8) Don’t Operate in a Cocoon.
The internet is a medium which is shared by millions. When you set up your website, don’t operate as if you are a self-contained island. Get out there and keep in tune with what is happening on other websites related to your own. Participate in forums. Post links to other websites and ask for a link in return. Form partnerships with other sites if it is appropriate. When it comes to communication, people like personal contacts. Hiding behind general email address like “sales” and “info” is OK as long as there is a way to also email you directly. A company site which allows email direct to the management is good. Just remember how much you hate calling a company and getting stuck in their phone system. Sometimes you just want to talk to somebody. Give your visitors that ability.

(9) Have a Plan to Attract Repeat Traffic.

Use newsletters, out-going email, contests, forums, clubs, auctions – anything that will cause people to return to your website. When posting links to other websites, don’t just send your visitors somewhere else. They may never return. Provide them an exit page. Give them a pop-up when they try to leave your site. Or at the very least make external links open in a new window.

(10) Track Your Visitors
Pay attention to your site’s statistics and react accordingly. What are people reading? How are they finding you? Do they just come and leave right from your homepage? How long as they are on your website? Do they return? This data is immensely valuable in fine-tuning your website based on customer needs and wants. Remember, the biggest mistake of any webmaster is designing the site for what THEY want. A successful website is designed for the target audience, not to impress the site’s owner.

What Is Electronic-Data-Interchange?

Electronic-Data-Interchange, or EDI is a method of computer to computer exchange of various types of information. While many people know of the internet and the World Wide Web as communication methods, the electronic-data-interchange is much similar. It allows the transfer of data from one place to the next with very minimal need for people to get involved.

Today, the Electronic-Data-Interchange is regulated. It offers specific interchange methods that transpire overseas and nationally as standard bodies when it comes to moving information and business transactions from one place to the next. For example, this is the most common form of communication in the process of purchasing goods and services. Communication for the location to the financial institution to deliver a message of the amount of funds required, in this case, is what data will be transferred.

In most cases, the information that is transmitted in an electronic data interchange is done so that companies can communicate. They can provide information to allow business transactions or the passage of very important information. For example, in the healthcare industry they can be used to help communicate through the network about a patient allowing for a faster method of receiving information. This technology is still being developed in many areas, though.

In fact, more and more so, people are turning to Electronic-Data-Interchange as their means of communication especially with more people turning to the Internet. The Electronic-Data-Interchange allows for networks of all sorts to communicate and this is helping ecommerce as a great way for companies to buy, sell or trade information and services. In fact, ANSI has just approved a set of Electronic-Data-Interchange standards. They are known as the X12 standards. Nonetheless, you will see more and more people using them because more and more people are getting online to do just these things.

Installing A Link Directory

If you have a website and want more people to link to you, installing a link directory is the right means for you to generate targeted Internet traffic. Indeed installing a link directory is a great way to get the trade links noticed on the Internet .

For a basic rendezvous with the concept of link directory and its installation, read on the article till the end. I am sure, once you finish reading this web page you would not ask any questions as you would be busy installing a link directory. So read on.

What is a Link Directory?
Link Directory is a platform on the Internet where various webmasters submit their links for free. The other webmasters can also exchange or trade links between them on a link directory. It is an effective and easy way to increase your search engine rankings. And that too for free!

In other words, you can also say that a link directory is a systematic record of resource links on a website. The links on a website are categorized according to their purpose. A website may support hundreds of links on its link page.

Why do people install a link directory?
Every webmaster wishes to get the target audience on their websites. installing a link directory is appropriate way to get the desired traffic and attention to the link sites. A number of people make use of web directories to find out the related links for their websites. This makes the job of online searching quite easy for them. Each and every link directory has categories and sub categories links.

How to go about installing a link directory?
You need to meet certain requirements for installing a link directory.

First of all you have to categorize your link directory. Your computer should have the definite script to run your link directory on a web server. The PHP scripting language is the best one to run your script on the Windows operating system. Other scripts like CGI are also used extensively for installing a link directory. The script can be purchased from any software store. The right script will make your installation easier. Some PHP scripts in the market are very powerful. They allow you to add as many categories in the link directory as possible. For installing such a link directory you must have a Linux operating system.

Also there are some scripts in the market that allow you to install the link directory on any of the operating system like Windows, UNIX and Linux. For installing any link directory, you should have a free space on your computer system. You may require 250 MB or more free space to install link directory software. Also you need to have a particular type of IP address for installation. If you do not have the right IP address, the Domain Name Server registrations may be lost and may result in the failure of the installation process.

Make one thing absolutely sure that the installation of your directory may be interrupted if the network is not properly connected. If you receive the connection errors such as “the link directory installation failed” or “error in installation”, check the network cable connection.

The domain name is the most important part of your link directory. Your link directory is installed with a particular domain name. Remember that the domain name should not be single. Create a domain name that suggests that the directory is a part of your organization. If your website domain name is “xyz.com”, the domain name of your directory must be some what like “ab.xyz.com”.

Keeping these things in your mind, installing a link directory would not have remained a task for you. Isn’t?

Multiple Website Hosting – Subdomains are the Answer!

Many business owners find themselves in a quandary over the ways to make the most of their company’s web site. This is especially true of those who have the need to maintain more than one web site but do not wish to pay for multiple hosting accounts. If this is you, a sub-domain may be the answer.

Sub-domains are sort of a site within a site. They are not, however, simply additional pages of an existing web site. The sub-domain can have a web site all its own, completely separate from the site located at the main domain name.

To understand the use and purpose of sub-domains, it may be necessary to first understand the concept of an internet domain name. Every web site that is active on the internet (and there are literally billions of them now – it was estimated as long ago as 1996 that there were more web pages in existence than there were people on Earth) has a unique domain name. There can be only one Ebay dot com, for example, on the entire internet. The domain name, however, is really just a way for humans to relate to the site. Internet servers see web site names as unique I.P. addresses. It is the domain name server that translates those numbers into names and back again.

A sub-domain is simply an offshoot of your web site’s domain. In terms of the way it appears on the server, the sub-domain is simply a folder or a sub directory located within your domain’s root directory. Any sub directory can serve as a sub domain. For example, if your web site is “www.mycompany.com” and you store the images for your site in a directory called “images,” then you could, if you wished, create a sub-domain at “images.mycompany.com”. As long as you put an “index.html” page in the folder you should be able to pull it up in a web browser that way. In most cases you will create a new sub directory to be associated with a sub-domain and some web hosts do not support sub-domains on their servers or put a limit on the number of sub-domains you may associate with your site.

The benefits of using sub-domains as opposed to opening multiple hosting accounts are twofold. First, you get the obvious benefit of only having to pay for one hosting account. You also benefit from being able to have a completely separate web site, but one that your customers will easily recognize as being associated in some way with your business. Some companies will set up sub-domains for various divisions (xyz.com may also have sales.xyz.com or support.xyz.com) and some will use sub-domains for various businesses that are all offshoots of the same parent company.

That association could be a downside to using sub-domains as well. If you want to keep the relationship between your companies under wraps (like Disney tried so hard to do with Touchstone Pictures so many years ago), you may want to use multiple accounts rather than subdomains. The web address clandestineproducts.megamall.com would clearly betray that there was some connection between Clandestine Products and Megamall, whether you wanted that information to be known or not.