What to do with all of those RSS feeds? How about a Widget Creation tool?

For any business that has found itself with many RSS feeds from a single site or through many sites and had no way to share these feeds with visitors in a cohesive, useful way, we built the RSS Widget Creation Tool. It originated with a major book publisher that had an incredibly popular blog with many categories of information (each with it's own RSS feed), and an enormous catalog of titles with new releases being added each day (again with each category having it's own RSS feed). Bloggers, … [Read more...]

Computer Science Education Week & The Hour of Code

Today is the kick off of the 2013 Computer Science Education Week and this year the big push if behind the "Hour of Code" initiative.  The idea is to get students to go hands on writing some code. As a guy that does this work for a living, I think it's great to expose kids creating with computers.  It's funny when I talk with my peers, without fail there's a story of when they were 10 or 12 years old and got their first computer. … [Read more...]

Not Knowing Really Isn’t Okay Anymore

After reading Clay Shirky's post regarding the Healthcare.gov failed rollout, the idea that it was still okay for management not to understand technology kept popping up. This is something I've been thinking about for a few years, so maybe that's why certain parts were so prominent to me. Lines like: Then I saw the look on their faces as they considered the programmer’s offer. The look … [Read more...]

I’d bet Mozart wouldn’t have been a ‘Code – Save – Refresh’ guy

When building a website and especially (for me) while trying to tune in a particular style with CSS, the "command-s" and "command-r" keys, by all rights, should be worn off of my notebook. See, these are the 'quick keys' for Save and Refresh. Here's the drill... Change the style, save it, and refresh the web page to see what it looks like. Just as Mozart didn't need an orchestra in front of him to play the parts before … [Read more...]

Painless Facelifts

One of my favorite things about Wordpress is the ability to quickly change the look of the site while all of the content just pops into place.  Recently we updated 6 sites for John Wiley & Sons.  They wanted the color scheme changed from green to blue with a new logo added.  A few of the sites had hundreds of articles already produced, so in the old days, this would have been a long process. But by changing a few things in the Wordpress theme CSS, we updated all the sites in no time.  I … [Read more...]

CollegeHumor Founder Has Advice

In the latest newsletter from the University of Richmond, they include a quick profile of Josh Abramson, the co-starter of CollegeHumor.com. At the end of the interview he gives some advice to students: "Students need to learn how to build websites — it's probably the most coveted skill in New York City right now,” he said. “If you have the business and the technical savvy, you'll be incredibly well positioned.” This isn't great advice for just students, … [Read more...]

Become a Publishing Powerhouse

So you've had a book idea on your mind for months (maybe years) but never followed through because you couldn't find an interested publisher (and, well, writing a book is hard work!).  Well, now, with a little elbow grease, you can get distribution to millions of readers, publish on your own terms, and even have complete control of the finished product!  Yesterday, Amazon.com announced their new tool set for building books in their new KF8 (Kindle Format 8 ) standard.  Here's a clip from the … [Read more...]

FileMaker & MySQL are an Awesome Combination

Late last year we went live with a website that was fundamentally a big database that was accessed and maintained through a browser. It was fantastic because it was secure, easy to design around, flexible to port the data to other websites for other purposes, and maybe most importantly - accessible to anyone in the office that had an Internet connection and a web browser. At home, at work, on the beach, where ever - as long as they were connected to the web, they were connected to their live … [Read more...]