Adobe Labs Logo
By Darryl K. Taft on 2011-03-11

Adobe Labs is the home for experimental and early-stage projects where developers and designers can experience and evaluate new and emerging innovations, technologies and products from Adobe engineers.

Adobe Labs fosters a collaborative software development process, allowing users to become productive with new products and technologies faster and allowing the Adobe development teams to respond and react to early feedback to shape the software to meet the needs and expectations of the community. At Adobe Labs, visitors get access to resources such as prerelease software and technologies; code samples and best practices to accelerate the users’ learning curve; early versions of product and technical documentation; and forums, wiki-based content and other collaborative resources to help them interact with other developers and Adobe.

Recently Adobe came up with a new Flash-to-HTML5 tool, known as “Wallaby,” that enables Flash developers to build apps with greater reach. Adobe introduced Wallaby in a demo at the Adobe MAX 2010 conference in October and released it on the Adobe Labs site March 8 as an experimental technology for developers to try out. Adobe customers called for a closer look at the technology following that MAX demo.

Wallaby is an Adobe AIR application that allows designers and developers to convert Adobe Flash Professional files into HTML5 with a simple drag and drop of the mouse, quickly expanding the distribution of creative content across platforms.

Full article at URL below.

Source eWeek.com : http://www.eweek.com/c/a/Application-Development/Adobe-Labs-The-10-Hottest-Projects-in-the-Works-140393

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“Design, according to industrial designer Victor Papanek, is the conscious and intuitive effort to impose meaningful order. We propose a somewhat more detailed definition of human-oriented design activities:

  • Understanding users’ desires, needs, motivations, and contexts
  • Understanding business, technical, and domain opportunities, requirements, and constraints
  • Using this knowledge as a foundation for plans to create products whose form, content, and behavior is useful, usable, and desirable, as well as economically viable and technically feasible

This definition is useful for many design disciplines, although the precise focus on form, content, and behavior will vary depending on what is being designed. For example, an informational Web site may require particular attention to content, whereas the design of a chair is primarily concerned with form. As we discussed in the Introduction, interactive digital products are uniquely imbued with complex behavior.

When performed using the appropriate methods, design can provide the missing human connection in technological products.”

Credits:

text: About Face, The Essentials of Interaction Design 3
image:
Bill Verplank’s sketch-lecture to CCRMA HCI Technology course, Stanford University, 2000.

Adobe s Flash coming to Honeycomb tablets... One distinction that tablets running Google’s Android OS will have over the iPad is the capability to play Flash content. Adobe says it will launch support soon.

Article By: Dan Nystedt — 2/22/2011 9:13:00 AM

Adobe says Flash support for tablets based on Google’s upcoming “Honeycomb” version of the Android operating system will be available “within a few weeks”.

Honeycomb is the first version of Android designed for tablet PCs and is eagerly anticipated. Motorola’s Xoom tablet will launch on Thursday as the first to run the software, but initial versions won’t come with flash support. Verizon, which is putting it on sale, previously said Flash would be available in “spring 2011.”

The vague time reference had people fearing flash wouldn’t be available until the end of the season, but a posting on Adobe’s blog points to a slightly earlier release.

“Consumers are clearly asking for Flash support on tablet devices and the good news is that they won’t have to wait long. We are aware of over 50 tablets that will ship in 2011 supporting a full web experience (including Flash support) and Xoom users will be among the first to enjoy this benefit,” wrote Matt Rozen, on Adobe’s Flash Platform Blog.

Adobe said version 10.2 of its flash player will be offered as a download or preinstalled on some tablets launching later in 2011. Adobe has said that Flash Player 10.2 will offer users of dual-core tablets and smartphones HD Flash video and up to 30 frames per second video performance.

The blog posting appears to be aimed at a number of critics who have recently suggested it might put people off buying them.

Daniel Ionescu at PC World, for example, noted the Motorola Xoom is seen by many as the first real rival to Apple’s iPad, yet it may be a “hard sell” due to its hefty $800 price tag and lack of Flash.
Support for Adobe Flash Player software is seen as a major advantage for rivals to Apple’s iPad because Apple has eschewed the technology, which has found widespread use as a video streaming format.

Steve Jobs listed several reasons why Apple does not allow Flash on iPods, iPhones or iPads in a public posting last April, including a drain on battery life and that more modern offerings work better.

Adobe defended itself by posting data of its own and taking out full page ads in major newspapers.

Adobe expects to see Flash installed on over 132 million devices by the end of this year, he added, saying the company had raised its estimates for 2011.

Source: http://www.itbusiness.ca/it/client/en/home/News.asp?id=61392

LinkedIn Image

 

Smartly executed self-promotion is the key to career advancement, and in our hyper-connected days, LinkedIn is one of the best tools to help you do this. The question isn`t whether you should be on LinkedIn, the mega-popular professional networking service, but rather, how to best take advantage of this powerful medium to separate you from the pack. After all, with more than 80 million registered LinkedIn users, standing out among your peers can be a daunting consideration.

“Not doing something with LinkedIn is like leaving money on the table,” says Debra Forman, a certified executive coach in Toronto, Ontario. “You don’t need to pay for the upgrade — the free service is all you need — but the key is getting people to land on your page.”

To get the right people to view your profile and to wow them while they`re there, consider these tactics:

  1. Get connected. “The key to LinkedIn is being found and being fabulous,” says Irene Koehler, a social media consultant in San Francisco. Koehler says the first step is to make relevant connections. “Understand that the number of connections you have directly impacts how easily you can be found,” explains Koehler. Forman agrees but believes there should be quality along with quantity: Don`t add more connections than you can keep up with, she says.
  2. Say something. Take advantage of the “Share” tab on your profile page, which lets you share insights, a website link or other information with your community. “Draw people into whatever you’re doing, and it’ll go out to all of your connections,” says Forman, who promotes a monthly video in this fashion. “Remember, you might only have, say, 100 people in your network, but you could reach millions because every one of those connections has connections who can see what you’re up to as well.” Using the “Share” tab is a good way to be proactive in the search process, as if raising a hand above the crowd. Another way to be heard is to regularly answer questions in the question/answer component of LinkedIn, establishing your expert voice.
  3. Be a joiner. Belonging to a LinkedIn group that’s relevant to your expertise opens up new opportunities, says Forman. “The beauty of groups is you can promote yourself, get work and be noticed.”
  4. Be a wordsmith. “Unless you optimize your profile, which includes using good keywords, you’ll be the world’s best-kept secret,” says Koehler. “Understand which keywords are best to use, which speak to who you are and who you’re trying to attract. Use the terms employers are using, says Koehler. “For example, if you’re a Web designer, you’ll want to use searchable words like ‘web,’ ‘html,’ ‘graphics,’ ‘design,’ ‘designer’ and so on. The top key words should be in the summary section of your profile page.”
  5. Show, don`t tell. Aim for compelling text on your profile page, such as, “You’ve only got that one moment to impress them,” says Koehler. Your profile should not look like a resume with bullet points; instead, potential employers should hear your voice and understand how you approach this job differently than the next person, she adds. Include links to your work-related blog and import feeds from Twitter if you offer commentary on IT issues.

It`s not just what you have to say, however. Recommendations from others who know your work in IT are important too, says Koehler. “We all think we’re fabulous, sure, but it’s more powerful to have others offer their perspective.”

article by Elizabeth Wasserman

Article Source: http://mediadesigner.digitalmedianet.com/articles/viewarticle.jsp?id=1314546

20 eventsToday we all use our smartphones and our broadband-equipped home and work PCs and tablets to instantly access information and data on just about any topic via the Internet. But have you ever taken a few moments to realize how far we’ve come since our first forays online?

by Todd R. Weiss

article here: http://www.itbusiness.ca/IT/client/en/slideshow/20-Internet-Events/index.asp

Abstract Pic of the Wordl Wide Web

“… people in the newspaper industry saw the web as a newspaper. People in TV saw the web as TV, and people in book publishing saw it as a weird kind of potential book. But the web is not just some kind of magic all-absorbing meta-medium. It’s its own thing.”

Paul Ford

In Star Trek, the Holodeck is a seemingly impossible place that can create environments, objects and people out of photons and force fields. Now researchers tasked with creating a haptic holographic prototype may bring that Sci-Fi imagining one step closer to reality.
1/17/2011 6:00:00 AM By: Brian Jackson

Source: http://www.itbusiness.ca/it/client/en/home/News.asp?id=60900

 Holodeck  prototype project gets government funding article

A project that seeks to combine digital holography with haptic feedback – meaning you could actually feel interactions with the holograms – has received funding from the federal government alongside 11 other projects affiliated with OCAD University.

The description of the technology sounds like a prototype for Star Trek’s Holodeck – a space where space travelers on the Sci-fi show can recreate any setting, object or person and interact with them as though they are real. Toronto’s OCAD will provide the visual technology, auto-stereoscopic that project 3D images without requiring the viewer to wear glasses, and Waterloo, Ont.-based Entact Robotics will provide the haptic feedback technology.

“The kind of holography we’re working with is technology most people haven’t seen yet,” says Michael Page, assistant professor in OCAD’s faculty of art and the academic partner on the project. “It’s a hologram that you can feel.”

OCAD hologram
An example of work done in OCAD’s holography lab. Courtesy of Lisamorgan via Flickr.

Page Navigation
1) Goal to combine two existing technologies into one. – Page 1
2) Funding designed to fuel commercialization. – Page 2
3) Hologram prototype goal of research project. – Page 3

Related Story: Thought-controlled computing no longer Star Trek fiction

RoadMap

Keeping connected while on the road. – Page 1

Picture this: You’re sitting down in between meetings on a business trip, and you need to send a few quick e-mail messages and an image or two. You pull out your handy-dandy USB 3G Internet dongle, but no luck.

Undaunted, you start looking around for an open Wi-Fi network, but no dice. Even your smartphone Internet is mysteriously down. Is this a nightmare? Nope–just another day for a business traveler lost in the wilds of mobile Internet.

Don’t let this happen to you. Check out our road-tested tips for getting your work done by any Internet connection necessary.

Slow mobile broadband? Try switching spots–even if you’re getting a great signal

Getting five bars on your mobile-broadband signal doesn’t necessarily mean that you’ll get the best data speeds, especially if you’re in an area with lots of cellular-network traffic. Although the signal-strength indicator does tell you how strong your connection is to the nearest signal tower, it doesn’t tell you how busy that tower is.

That means that you (and everyone else in the area) could have a splendid connection to a tower that is so overloaded it can’t send data along the network fast enough. Oddly, sometimes your signal strength will be worse, but your overall speeds will be better since you’re connecting to a tower that’s less busy overall.

Bring your own gear for hotel-room Wi-Fi

Hotels love to advertise their free in-room Wi-Fi. However, the mere existence of Wi-Fi doesn’t guarantee that it will work at the level you need it to. If you want to ensure that your room is covered, you’ll need to bring your own Wi-Fi router and insist on a room at a hotel that is wired for ethernet. Don’t forget the power strip, too, or else you might have to choose between wireless Internet access and your room’s lighting.

Travel with a WiFi router. – Page 2

If you’re leery about lugging all of that gear around, remember this: Your room’s ethernet could be a 1-foot-long cable sticking out of the landline phone. You might be able to get your work done with your laptop on your bedside table, but your back will never forgive you.
Test your speed before uploading large files

If you need to send a few large files back to home base, try out a few different services before starting the upload in earnest. After all, your mobile ISP or hotel IT administrator might have blocked or throttled certain services. Another concern: What seems like the most direct file-transfer method (uploading to your company’s FTP server, for example) might actually be bogged down with unnecessary intermediaries such as a VPN connection that could reduce the overall speed.

While uploading a video file from a hotel ethernet connection, I found that I got only 20 kilobits per second from our FTP server, while Dropbox bumped me up to 50 kbps and MediaFire managed 80 kbps. Even though I wasn’t directly transferring the video to the home office, using MediaFire instead of our in-house FTP saved time for everyone involved.

Use protection on open Wi-Fi hotspots

The time you save by logging in to the first unencrypted Wi-Fi hotspot you encounter doesn’t compare to the risk you take if someone shady sniffs your password or hijacks your Gmail session and steals all your personal info. You can reduce your risk by using utilities such as Hotspot Shield and configuring your Web apps to use HTTPS whenever possible, but you need to take those steps before you log in to the unprotected Wi-Fi spot.

Come down from the cloud

It’s easier than ever to keep your work in the cloud without disrupting a traditional work environment–that is, until someone pulls the plug. Make sure to have a solid set of offline tools so that you can still work when you’re disconnected, and keep local copies of anything business-critical (your schedule, for example). Maintaining a record can be as simple as saving a Google Doc as a Word doc, or taking a quick screenshot of your to-do list on your smartphone before you head to the airport.

You can still use Google Gears. – Page 3

If you depend on Google services, grab Google Gears. Even though Google effectively abandoned it more than a year ago, it still allows you to access your Google Docs, Gmail, Google Calendar, and a few third-party apps like Remember the Milk without an Internet connection. It’s already built into Chrome, but it also supports Firefox and Internet Explorer in Windows, and Firefox in OS X.

Bring a better Wi-Fi stumbler

Still using Windows’ built-in Wi-Fi panel in the taskbar? Before you hit the road, pick up a more powerful utility such as NetStumbler or InSSIDer. Unlike Windows’ built-in Wi-Fi signal meter, these apps will give you a good look at which networks have a consistently strong signal over time, which networks are on overlapping channels, and so on. This information is particularly useful when several usable networks are in the area and you want to know which one will give you the best reception without having to try them all out one by one.

Try to find the Wi-Fi access point

Even the fastest Wi-Fi cards can’t help you if you’re too far from the access point itself. Try to find the actual hardware access point itself, and sit near it. In public spaces, check near any labeled “charging station” areas and scan the ceiling for any boxes labeled with networking equipment brands (Cisco, D-Link, Netgear, and so on). Coffee shops often have them in plain view near any phone/ethernet wiring. If you can’t find it, you can use the Wi-Fi scanners mentioned above to check your signal strength while walking around the room, though you’ll look like you’re using your PC to dowse for water.

Plan your trip with Internet in mind

An easy way to avoid getting stuck without Internet access: Do your homework. Don’t book your hotel reservation without checking the HotelChatter blog’s most recent Annual Hotel Wi-Fi Report, which provides listings of free, paid, and free-with-membership hotel Wi-Fi access. Kayak also has airline, airport, and hotel Wi-Fi comparisons. Plan your trip right, and you’ll be able to work from everywhere after the TSA checkpoint.

Starbucks is your best friend

Regardless of what you think about the chain’s coffee, you’ll be elated to find a Starbucks when you’re desperately hunting for Internet access. The same goes for McDonald’s, Panera, and pretty much any hotel lobby. Even public libraries usually have free Wi-Fi–whether they’re open or not. You can check out free Wi-Fi databases such as OpenWiFiSpots.com before you leave for your trip, but the listings aren’t always accurate or up-to-date, so you’re probably better off just noting where your coffee-shops-of-last-resort are. If you’re really worried, invest in a membership with some of the more common Wi-Fi providers, such as T-Mobile HotSpot.

Have your own tips for disconnected road warriors? Share them in the comments!

Source: PCworld.com

1/14/2011 6:00:00 AM By: Patrick Miller

URL of Article : http://www.itbusiness.ca/it/client/en/home/News.asp?id=60881&PageMem=1

from Website Magazine…

Opening quotation marks imageAs 2010 draws to a close, it’s time to turn our attention to another year. Another decade, actually, that will bring new challenges and new opportunities. Here are five important trends you can expect to see in 2011 and a few ideas to get you started on the right foot. Happy New Year.

Security. Consumers are worried about online security, and for good reason. Increasingly, security is an issue not just on our own websites but wherever our brands can be found on the Web. As we increase visibility across properties – mobile, Facebook and Twitter, online forums, location-based apps like Foursquare – and encourage our users to share information with us on those sites, we increase the risk of losing control over sensitive data.

McAfee reports that mobile will be a big target for cyber criminals in 2011. The increase in usage, combined with “historically fragile cellular infrastructure and slow strides toward encryption”, will put user data on mobile phones at high risk for an attack. McAfee Labs says that Google’s Android, Apple’s iPhone, Foursquare, Google TV and the Mac OS X platform, are all expected to be targets in the New Year. Also reported is that URL-shortening services will be a significant target in 2011.

Take these threats seriously and make security – both for users and internally – a top priority. Also, make sure your users know that their safety is a top concern. Make privacy policies and security measures easy to locate on your website.

images showing mobile phone evolution (larger to smaller)Mobile. I think it’s safe to say that “the year of mobile” was finally realized in 2010. And it won’t slow down in 2011. Every business must have a mobile strategy in 2011, no matter how small it might seem. That could range from a mobile-friendly website or mobile app to simply advertising on mobile devices for lead generation or SMS campaigns.

But use caution – not every mobile strategy will work for every business. Mobile apps are expensive to produce and maintain and should be developed only when research has been done and you can really bring something useful to the table.

Understand your mobile audience. For example, a recent article by Kathryn Koegel states, “Who knew that the BlackBerry Curve and Pearl are hot phones among girl teens? Kind of counterintuitive, but when you realize that their parents are on BlackBerries, BlackBerry gave them a sweet deal to add on to their own plans and those girls, they do like to text on buttons…”

Groupon.com LogoDigital Couponing. One of the biggest stories of the year was Groupon turning down Google’s $6 billion buyout offer. Groupon is officially the Internet’s fastest growing company in history, but online couponing is not limited to Groupon; not in any sense. Local newspapers are in on the action and even very small websites are pairing up with local businesses to offer targeted coupons to their users. Get in.

Learn How Groupon Works!

Learn How Groupon Works!

The Groupon Business Model

Of course, nobody wants to give away the store. The good news is that you don’t have to. While the current environment has trained consumers to expect a deal on almost anything, that “anything” is flexible. Think about coupons as an upsell more than a discount. Offer add-ins when spending thresholds are met, for example. Whatever your strategy, these coupons are here to stay for the foreseeable future and it’s important that your customers feel they are getting in on the deal.

search-engines-imageSearch Remains Universal. Of all the headline-grabbing material in 2010, search was not one of them. However, search is still a major factor of every online business. Take a look at any website, and you’ll find a search bar – even Facebook and Twitter have prominent search bars at the top of their pages.

Google still rules search but understand that search happens everywhere and for different reasons. That means optimizing for search on different formats and for different keywords, depending on the venue. A mobile search, for example, could lean toward location (the nearest coffee shop – for which you would optimize using location keywords and parameters) while a desktop search might be for product images. Social search will increase in relevancy for users, meaning that your social graph – your connections to consumers and other businesses, and the information you share and publish on these networks – will become a form of SEO in its own right. Stay relevant.

Expanding Business Models. Finally, think beyond your current business offerings for 2011. The online business world is more competitive than ever. Very few businesses can thrive with the same model or the same product year after year – especially pure-play online businesses.

One of the great advantages of doing business on the Web is its speed and flexibility. As quickly as an idea arrives it can be placed and promoted on the Web. And just as quickly, websites can be shut down or sold. Ideally, you would like to open new opportunities related to your current business. Think value-added for your current customers. But don’t be afraid to develop something completely outside the box – that’s why microsites exist.

Web 2.0 Business Models – A quick survey

Keyword Research and Quote Marks -How to reign over the SERPS
By Affiliate Buddy

keyword analysis - Magnifying Glass + word (keyword)

Keyword research and quotation marks are two linked subjects that confuse many online (including me when I began). In fact – I get asked about these two things on almost a day-to-day basis.

The question generally goes something like this: ‘Why should I use quote marks (“”) when performing keyword research – because nobody uses “” when searching on the internet.’

Great question! Here’s the answer! The inverted commas are really only there for YOU – to help with your research. That is the ONLY reason!

Please allow me to me explain: The quotes allow you to ascertain your competition. This is the SECRET that no one explains! When you conduct a search at Google WITHOUT the quotes – you get results that contain your keywords IN ANY COMBINATION. But… when you conduct a search at Google WITH the quotes – you get results that only include pages that contain your EXACT keyword phrase.

Do you see the difference? A lot of people don’t at first.

Let me give you an example: Say you looked at the keyword “lose weight for summer holiday”. Lets imagine the results are 767,000 searches without quotes – and 1,000 with quotes. You may want to consider using this as a key phrase because using the exact term you are only competing with 1,000 pages – not 767,000.

Does that makes sense? I know at first it takes a few moments to see the difference – it took me weeks!

When people type in a search in Google WITHOUT quotes, they will get ANY site that uses that keyword in their articles, webpage etc. Plus, without quotes the keyword won’t necessarily be the ‘exact’ keyword. It could be broken up.

An example of this is – if your keyword is “fastest way to build credit”, Google will pick up sites that might include “fastest” and “build credit”, but not necessarily in that order (or even grouped together).

But using the quotation marks for your keyword research – you will bring up sites/articles who are specifically optimising for the keywords you are targeting.

Do you see?

Keyword Research in Quotation Marks gives you an idea of the TRUE competition you are up against.

When you use quotes, it brings up your most prominent competition. In other words, people who know a bit about what they are doing to rank for those keywords. Using keywords in quotation marks just tells you more precisely who you are competing against. It’s true most people never use quotes when they are doing a search for something – but if you do – this will give you an idea how many pages you are competing with for your keywords.

Using “” is just a tool to give you an edge on your competition.

Understanding Keyword Research and Quotation Marks is a powerful technique to to beat your competitors – and to get to the top of the Search Engines.

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