Comment

Wag! Los Angeles Dog Walking & Dog Sitting. Great Idea or Shady Business Model?

Wag is an app that allows you to get your dog walked by people from the internet. Another gig Economy style startup. As a walker you really have liability but what about the dog owner? More importantly the home owner.

This Wag reviewer had this to say about their experience.

"My Wag walker stole food and beverage from me (essentially raided the fridge). Even stole a frozen package of bacon hoping I wouldn't notice because I shop Costco and had 2 other frozen packages. They admitted to taking food and beverage but said I told them it was okay to. I am not at all a generous person so that is very out of character of me to offer food for a 30 minute walk. What is weird about the situation is that I got a notification from the app that they would arrive at 7:30. It was 7:50 and I did not get an update so I logged into my IP camera to see what was up. My dog was sitting in his bed, no sign of the walker. Then as I turned the camera my walker must have heard the noise and immediately peaked around the corner. Right then I got a notification that she had arrived and the walk was started. Very odd, it was almost like she was surprised by my presence. The way I see it, she arrived on time but did not log in so she could raid my fridge then when she realized I had a camera and was using it she immediately started the walk. If my camera was angled at the fridge this would be case closed. She also left my door unlocked even though we agreed on placing them in the lock box Wag provided.

They claim they are insured and bonded but that is only when it comes to your pet. If you used this app and the person robbed you blind Wag would tell you to have a nice day and they have no responsibility. Your renters or home owners insurance would say "sorry can't help you" because you allowed this person to enter your house and therefore aren't covered.

It is pointless to use this app if you as the customer are taking such large risks. I am lucky enough to lose out on under $20 but I want to warn others not to use this app until they create reasonable insurance to cover your potential loss as the customer. Extremely poor business model and basically using a grey area in the law. SCAM. Please learn from my mistake. If I get another Wag walk I will be home when they arrive which really defeats the purpose."

 

Going through their sign up is asking for a three references and some some simple questions about dogs. Which anyone can find the answers using google since the application is not timed. 

It seems like Wag is a good concept but a liability for the home owner. With some work on the legal side and responsibilty side for the Dog Owner is improved this could be a great way to earn extra money.

Comment

Comment

Drone Photography Is The Anti-Selfie (And That’s Why It Is So Good) A new book celebrates the beauty of drone photography, from aerial landscape shots to wedding portraits.

Contrary to popular belief, drones aren’t primarily used for deliveries (yet) or spying on your neighbors (that’s illegal). They’re mostly used for photography–and they’ve got their own version of Instagram to boot.

It’s called Dronestagram, and since the website was started in 2013 it’s become a hub for drone photographers and the thousands who flock to the site to check out their work. And now, the best of Dronestagram has been immortalized in a new book called Dronescapes, edited by longtime journalism photo editor Ayperi Karabuda Ecer.

 

Guararapes, BrazilMarcio Ogura. [Photo: © 2017 The Photographers of Dronestagram]

The book catalogs the current landscape of drone photography, from “dronies” (drone enthusiasts’ code for selfies taken by drone) to more traditional aerial landscape shots, to photographs of monuments, cities, animals, sporting events, and even weddings–all seen from above. Ecer also profiles some of the field’s more prominent photographers, including the mother-daughter-duo Kim and Makayla Wheeler, who have been using drones since 2013 to take photographs, primarily of the landscape and wildlife around their home in Florida.

 

But what makes a drone photograph particularly compelling? “A really good drone photograph is one you can only shoot with a drone,” Ecer says. Some of Dronescapes‘s photos of nature in particular could never have been shot with a human present. One striking closeup image of an eagle was captured because the eagle started chasing the drone, thinking it was a fellow eagle. In another shot taken in New Zealand, hundreds of sheep waiting to be shorn stare directly into the camera.

Part of the appeal of drone photography, Ecer explains, is that it has made aerial photography accessible to a much broader number of people. Before drones, you needed a lot of high-tech equipment–and a helicopter. “Now practically anyone can shoot from the sky,” Ecer says. “The sky has become a new territory for photography.”

In Dronescapes, photographers capture well-known monuments, like the Statue of Liberty or Rio’s Christ the Redeemer, from directly atop the statues. Even office buildings take on new depth when captured in an unexpected way. Other photographers look for patterns they can spot from above, turning roads, fields, docks, and even junkyards into almost abstract pieces of art. The book also highlights some of the photographers using drones to document climate change and environmental disasters–a topic often explored by artists working with satellite images.

Perhaps the best photos in the book though, are the so-called “dronies.” In a section entitled “Drones Are Us,” Ecer gathers photographs of people who are really excited about their new photography toy. In one, a man lies down in a big grassy field, drone controller in hand. In another aerial shot, the photographer stands on the beach, casting a long shadow across the sand. In a third, the photographer stands atop a hill, hands triumphantly cast upward. “They’re like the anti-selfie,” Ecer says. “In drone photography it’s actually about putting the individual in scale with the environment. The individual is always tiny tiny, and then you have these big mountains or big city around.”

On par with the dronies are the wedding photographs–which aren’t just replicas of classic shots of the bride and groom from above. In one, a bride floats in the middle of a shallow sea, her groom standing next to her. In another, the bride and her friends mimic the throwing of the bouquet–all while lying on the ground.

Ecer included a section on this because she was fascinated with how the technology is changing people’s perceptions of portraits. “You always have this idea of family images in albums and your family watching you from a picture on the piano or something,” she says. “But now you have people looking up into the sky. It changes the whole feeling about what intimacy is.”

Despite the rise of the art form, privacy remains a hot topic when it comes to drones. It’s regulated differently in every country, but Ecer say the general trend is toward allowing them, rather than clamping down on privacy. As drones continue to invade the skies, it’s worth remembering how they can be an instrument for art and beauty, not just surveillance.

Comment

Comment

10 Squarespace Photography Designs.

10 of the Most Beautiful Photography Templates: What Sets Them Apart?

 

 

The visual nature of the Internet makes it the ideal format for getting a photography portfolio in front of a wide audience. The problem that many photographers face, though, is finding a template that is eye-catching and easy to work with.
 

Fortunately, there are numerous examples of photography templates that offer the perfect blend of aesthetics and user friendliness. By taking a closer look at some of the most beautiful Squarespace photography templates available, you can learn what sets these options apart from a crowded sea of websites filled with images.

1. Forte

 

Going bold can be truly attention-grabbing, as the Forte template highlights. This is an ideal choice for photographers who have large scale imagery that contains visual contrast and compelling lines. Providing such a big example of the photographer’s work makes it easier for visitors to fully appreciate it. Having a subtle menu at the top right helps keeps people around without being so distracting that it detracts from the initial image.

2. Wexley

 

The ultimate goal of any photography website is to get people to look through the photographer’s portfolio. With Wexley’s clean, fluid design, this is exactly what’s going to happen. As each visitor scrolls down the page, they are greeted by two new images at a time. If they hover their cursor over any picture, an overlay appears that includes the name of the photo. After clicking on their photograph of choice, visitors will be taken to a larger version so that they can see the finer details.

3. Ishimoto

 

Large scale photos are quite simply the most appealing because they quickly draw people in. Ishimoto provides more of a traditional top menu than the Forte photography template, but it still provides a huge viewing area that helps landscape photos pop! The inclusion of the scrolling arrow to the right of the screen keeps people looking through a slideshow instead of scrolling to the bottom of the page. Internet users have gotten used to looking at images in a slideshow format, so this can work to the photographer’s advantage.

4. Wells

 

Something as simple as moving the website’s menu can offer a completely new look. In the Wells photography template, the menu stays fixed on the left side as visitors scroll through the photos. There are two nice things about this approach. First, the images stand out because of their placement. Additionally, the fixed menu offers quick access to everything else the website has to offer. Most photography templates don’t have a fixed menu, which means people have to scroll back to the top to navigate to another page. Removing this step is virtually certain to reduce bounce rates.

5. Tudor

 

Although this isn’t exclusively a photography template, Tudor works very nicely as a showcase for a photographer’s blog. The layout is very scrollable, and it includes a fixed top menu that follows people down the page. There’s plenty of room to include a photograph with each blog post, and photographers can say as much, or as little, as they’d like in the rest of each entry. This is a good way to put recent work on display while simultaneously offering tips or adding keywords for SEO purposes. An online portfolio is necessary, but keep in mind that people want to see current work. A blog helps photographers accomplish this with ease.

6. Momentum

 

Momentum is another side-scrolling slideshow, but it has a few nice perks that make it stand apart from the crowd. For example, the cucumber shown in the screenshot usually takes up the entire screen above the menu. Clicking on the “I” button on the righthand side opens up an information box and resizes the image appropriately. This is a great way to share important details about each featured image, and it also gets people to take more of an active role by clicking on multiple things instead of merely making their way through the slideshow. The addition of the bottom menu makes this necessary piece unobtrusive to the imagery, which is very helpful considering the main goal is to put the photography on display.

7. Haute

 

The Haute template features large clickable imagery that can go to blog posts or a sales page for each photograph. The template alternates between a large horizontal space followed by two smaller spaces, and this format continues all the way down the page. This offers photographers the ability to properly show off their best portrait and landscape imagery in one convenient location. Varying between the two styles also provides visitors with some much-needed visual contrast, and it makes it easier to display the versatility within a photographer’s portfolio.

8. York

 

When people think of a photography website, the first thing that comes to mind is, naturally, photographs. But the truth is that’s only half of the package. As anyone who has ever hired a wedding photographer without ensuring their personality meshed well with the couple can tell you, it’s imperative to hire someone who the subjects will get along with.
The York template enables the photographer to include an introductory tagline, which is followed by space for several images in different sizes. Each photo can also feature a title that appears when a visitor hovers their cursor over it. A large tagline may not seem like a beautiful design element, but the impact it has on potential clients is definitely a thing of beauty.

9. Lange

 

The Lange template is a wise selection for landscape and documentarian style photographers. Each image box has the same dimensions, but clicking on one opens up a new page that has plenty of room for additional photos of all shapes and sizes. There’s also room to describe what visitors are seeing, and the slick design makes images appear to come from out of nowhere as people scroll through these interior pages. That’s a handy photographic template technique because it will encourage visitors to keep looking.

10. Mojave

 

Bold and modern design choices can keep people scrolling through the homepage when they would have normally bounced almost instantly. Mojave has a very responsive design that makes large format images and words appear to go on top of each other as visitors work their way down the homepage. This provides the perfect blend between images, necessary information and personality.

Making the Right Choice

Ultimately, each photographer needs to ensure that the template they choose works well as a showcase for their portfolio. Using modern elements, large scale imagery, a blog, fluid movement and the addition of hidden but easily accessible information will help photographers connect with a diverse audience.

Remember, the most important thing to consider is whether or not the template is flattering to the images in question. With Squarespace’s award-winning, all-in-one designs and long list of options, though, it’s easier than ever to achieve stunning, professional looking results. The addition of helpful tools such as 24/7 customer service, SEO help, social media integration and Squarespace’s guide to building a photographer site make the process easy for everyone.

Comment

Comment

Snapchat's pitch to media: We'll make fickle millennials your loyal fans

Snapchat's pitch to big brands has been the same for a while — the opportunity not just to reach its coveted, young audience but to also boost viewership on other platforms.

 

New data shows that Snapchat's claims could be true, though the situation opens up a traditionally thorny issue for marketers around causation and correlation. 

The Nielsen-commissioned data, released by Snap and first reported by Axios, shows that media companies that partnered on Snapchat's Discover platform also saw a 16 percent increase in TV "reach" (if they have a TV channel). Publishers without a Snapchat Discover channel saw a 5 percent decline in "reach" — which is something like average monthly viewers. 

Could it be that Snapchat users are more likely to be watching those channels already? Maybe. But Snapchat would rather lean toward the narrative that its platform serves as something of a marketing opportunity that helps brands elsewhere. 

SEE ALSO: Snapchat Stories search is here, will deluge you with puppy videos

Snapchat's magic also reaches beyond TV, according to Nielsen. For Discover partners on desktop, Snapchat supported a 20 percent increase in average monthly reach. The average monthly desktop audience had decreased by 1 percent if you compare the first six months of the Snapchat partnership to the prior six months. 

What Snapchat is trying to show is that it's not simply pulling eyes away from TV or away from mobile websites. It's finding a way to support the growth of brands across their networks. Becoming a Snapchat partner, it seems, creates success across devices. 

 

 

IMAGE: SNAP INC.

Obviously, you can't say Snapchat is everything for these brands and the growth they experienced over that six months period, as Nielsen confirmed. 

"It's not necessarily a causation story. Causation is a very loaded meaning in the industry, but it is like a correlation approach," said Ronjan Sikdar, Nielsen's VP of client consulting.

The methodology for Nielsen involved analyzing Snapchat users and non-Snapchat users, ages 18 to 34, from July 2014 to September 2016. 

Nielsen studied how these Snapchat users interacted with 15 Discover partners by using its fancy technology called Nielsen Total Media Fusion, including the Nielsen Online Panel for desktop, the Nielsen Electronic Mobile Meter Panel for mobile and the Nielsen People Meter for TV measurement. 

Nielsen and Snap declined to disclose the names of the partners. It did include media companies that have a presence on TV, digital and/or mobile. It also declined to reveal more information about the users surveyed, but said their usage varied. 

"Why the story is so interesting is it wasn’t a filtered group of heavy Snapchat user. It was anyone who's used Discover," Sikdar said. 

Snapchat also boosted reach of Discover partner's mobile audience, with a 23 percent increase over the six months prior and only a 4 percent increase in the six months prior to the partnership, according to the Nielsen study. 

For Snap, this study provides evidence to their big strategy that they are one of the most publisher-friendly platforms (quite unlike Facebook). The Discover network is rather exclusive, with about 60 partners on it, versus being a free-for-all, like on Facebook, Twitter and Google. 

Snap isn't just about creating a new mobile TV but about growing brands, no matter what platform they choose to be on. Snap's Chief Strategy Officer Imran Khan discussed its future in TV-like content during Advertising Week last year. His presentation included a video of NBC's new exclusive content from The Voice and The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon.

"Just like television," Khan said after a clip aired. 

Beyond digital media partners like Mashable, Snap works many major TV networks, including NBC, ESPN, Turner, ABC, BBC, A+E Networks, Discovery, VICE, MGM Television and Vertical Networks. Many of these partners have been locked down in the last year. 

Comment

1 Comment

Snapchat’s new 3D filters will blow your mind

Snap, the parent company of Snapchat, launched new three-dimensional lenses on Tuesday. When taking a photo or video with the rear-facing camera on a smartphone, users can tap the screen to see new 3D filters including a sparkling rainbow, a field of blooming flowers, and floating phrases like “OMG” and “Cute.”

The new lenses will be updated daily, Snap said. The app’s existing lenses — like flower crowns and animal ears — are swapped out regularly, with new filters added to the list and old options disappearing or reappearing over time.

Snapchat launched lenses about 18 months ago, offering filters that turn users into puppies and puking rainbow faces.

Last month, the company made “Stories” — photo and video posts shared by users that disappear after 24 hours — searchable. The move came after Facebook launched Snapchat copycat features, like short visual stories and disappearing messages.

Facebook-owned Instagram already includes quite similar features, which have been growing in popularity.

Last week, Facebook said more than 200 million people use Instagram Stories every day, which is more than Snapchat’s 161 million daily users.

 

1 Comment

Comment

How Dove Is ‘Hacking’ Photography to Change the Way Advertising Depicts Women

In college, we were charged with digging through magazines to find ads that depicted either minorities or women in a non-stereotypical (read: not sexy or homemaking) way. It was hard. For every 20 ads with an impossibly contorted white woman, we found maybe one with a minority—never mind a woman looking empowered, or even doing something normal like reading a newspaper … or welding, Flashdance-style.

At the time, we were told this isn’t the industry’s fault; it’s drawing from what the market wants. The subtext was that if we wanted to change norms in advertising, we’d have to change ourselves first.

On some level, this is true. But anyone who actually works in advertising recognizes that our relationship with society is more symbiotic than that. If we always waited for people to be ready, or tell us what they wanted, we’d never have gotten smartphones.

And there are costs to the norms we help perpetuate, both social and economic. Per Dove’s Global Beauty and Confidence Report from 2016, 68 percent of women can’t identify with the images they see in ads. This doesn’t just affect how women see themselves; it hurts margins, too.

Mindshare in Denmark wanted to do something about this. The result is “Image_Hack,” a Dove-branded effort to take the industry on through a common tool—Shutterstock.

After observing terms like “beautiful woman” and “real woman” mostly yield the same ol’ same, “we collaborated with some of the biggest photographers in the industry and took pictures of strong, independent and original women in non-stereotypical settings,” Mindshare creative director Kenneth Kaadtmann told AdFreak.

“The pictures were uploaded to stock sites and tagged to alter [their] algorithms, giving anyone who searches the site a realistic picture of women in today’s society. Then we encouraged agencies and advertisers to use these images to portray women equally in their ads.”

“The inspiration came out of a search on a stock site, where we had to browse through several pages until we found an image that was actually not in some way offensive,” Kaadtmann goes on. “That led to the question, ‘What if we could hack this site?’ which led to ‘What if we could hack this site, legally?’ That was how the idea was born.”

In the video, the agency claims it used a “back door” to upload and tag thousands of photos, but let’s get down to brass tacks—you don’t really need to “hack” Shutterstock to upload anything. It’s easy to become a contributor, and it’s in the site’s interest to let as many photographers as possible build out its database.

Kaatdtmann alludes to this when he talks about the idea of “legal” hacking, which for many might sound like an oxymoron. Still, the use of “hack” still applies—just not for Shutterstock. As the narrator explains, “By hacking the industry from the inside, we can hack women’s self-image.”

First, though, it “hacked” agencies and brands.

“We narrowed it down to two target groups—advertisers and advertising/media agencies,” Kaatdmann says. “One group we needed to inspire to brief differently, and one group we need to inspire to recommend differently.”

The images were uploaded onto Shutterstock around Jan. 18. The site, ImageHack.org, went live in February. And on March 8, International Women’s Day, a series of outdoor ads appeared outside major agencies in Denmark, encouraging them to use these new images and jump aboard the transformation train.

 

 

“Whether we accomplished the mission, only the future will tell. We can tell you that we do get a lot of downloads and can only assume that a lot of brands are using some of these pictures,” says Kaatdmann.

Specifically, 1,729 images have been downloaded, per the video, which was published a week ago. Advertisers and agencies from all over Denmark scooped the photos up and used them in their own advertising—42 brands in all, including Ford, Frisko, GFB Pension, Panorm and IT firm any.mac.

All that with just $10,000 in media spend.

 

 

 

 

Those are some cool results. Dove was impressed, too.

“Dove loved the idea when presented, and we quickly found a way to extend the campaign in a more consumer-oriented angle, [using] some of the models from ‘Image_Hack’ in its regular advertising,” Kaatdmann says. “For Dove, it has never been about Dove; it’s about making an actual difference to society. Great brands hold great power, and therefore great responsibilities.”

The only real critique we can offer “Image_Hack” is that there’s little ethnic diversity in the examples given. Also, the brands shown all tagged their ads with hashtag #equalwomen, which suggests their use of the photos may be exceptional and not a new norm.

But maybe that will change along with stock photo sites. Speaking of, here’s how our Shutterstock looks when we look up “beautiful woman”:

 

Results for “real woman” are somewhat better, as you start to see variance in ethnicity and age:

 

Don’t get us started on results filtered under “New” instead of “Popular.” There’s still a long way to go.

Kaadtmann, though, seems up to the challenge: “The campaign is still running and hopefully it will continue to do so, until the entire media landscape has been unstereotyped worldwide.”

That’s a tall order!

“We all have a responsibility for portraying women the way we do in advertising—by portraying the stereotypical beauty ideals,” adds Mindshare strategist Mette Bierbum Bacher. “If we, as an industry, change the way we portray women, we can be a part of changing women’s self-image.”

Comment

Comment

McDonald’s Taps Snapchat to Recruit New Employees

McDonald’s Taps Snapchat to Recruit New Employees

McDonald's is using a new, social method for attracting employees.

The global fast-food titan has started a new "Snaplications" campaign in Australia that uses Snap's Snapchat (SNAP, +1.22%) app to attract applicants. According to Australian news site News.com.au, which earlier reported on the feature, applicants send a 10-second video to McDonald's , which functions as a preliminary application. McDonald's (MCD, -0.15%) then reviews the video and sends the person a link to the company's careers page, where he or she can fill out an application form.

“We think this is actually a world first. Snaplications is basically a Snapchat ‘lens’ that gives users the ability to apply for a job —or at least commence that process—by sending a 10-second snap," McDonald's Australia chief operating officer Shaun Ruming told the Australian outlet.

Get Data SheetFortune’s technology newsletter

The Snapchat lens also lets applicants place virtual hats and nametags on their heads and chests to digitally see what it might look like to be one of the company's 106,000 Australian employees.

With more than 160 million active users around the world, Snapchat has become one of the more popular apps for users to share photos and videos with others. Snap, which went public last month and has yet to generate a profit, has been eyeing ways to boost the company's advertising appeal with big brands. Part of that effort has centered on attracting companies to the service's relatively young audience.

Since McDonald's still sends applicants to a traditional application form, the Snapchat integration is little more than a different take on a branding campaign aimed at finding younger employees. Ruming, in fact, said that McDonald's is looking for "new and innovative ways" to find employees and decided to start with Snap's social app. McDonald's hasn't disclosed how much it paid for the Snaplications campaign and whether a similar application process might come to other countries around the world.

 

 

Comment

Comment

Uber Partners with Snapchat

Uber now lets you select custom filters during your rides. Riders can access exclusive filters made just for Uber that are designed to be shared. So if you’re running late and want to send an estimated time of arrival, or you just want to show how baller you are in an Uber, pop open the Uber app for the option to post to Snapchat. Find the Snap card in the Uber app, select the type of filter you want to use, and swipe right. To make things more interesting, you can apply a standard Snapchat filter on top of the special Uber options.

Traditionally, we’ve used Uber to get from one address to another. But what about when we’re more interested in the people we’re meeting, and the place itself can be fluid?

Comment

Comment

New iPad and iPhone Launch Do Little to Quell Apple Rumors

New iPad and iPhone Launch Do Little to Quell Apple Rumors

 

At long last, Apple this week showcased some new hardware.

Apple on Tuesday unveiled a new iPhone version, called (PRODUCT)RED iPhone 7, that comes in red and benefits the Global Fund, which aims to eradicate AIDS. Additionally, Apple unveiled its long-awaited iPad update, and even showcased some a new, upcoming video-sharing app called Clips that looks striking similar to Snapchat's own video feature.

 

Still, Apple's announcements were notable in how small the updates were. And now there's widespread speculation that Apple will be holding an event sometime soon where it showcase some big iPad enhancements. Meanwhile, iPhone rumors continue to run rampant.

But it wasn't just about hardware this week. Apple also found itself the subject of a WikiLeaks data dump on CIA spying and was said to be investing heavily in a new technology.

Read on for this week's Apple news roundup:

  1. Apple made a splash on Tuesday with the announcement of a new (PRODUCT)RED iPhone 7. The device has the same processor and features in other iPhone 7 models, but comes with a new red finish. A portion of the (PRODUCT)RED iPhone 7 sales proceeds will go towards the Global Fund to fight AIDS. The handset starts at $749.
  2. Apple has officially discontinued the iPad Air line and is now offering, simply, the iPad. The tablet comes with a 9.7-inch Retina screen and Apple's A9 processor, which should work just fine for sophisticated apps. But perhaps most importantly, iPad features a $329 starting price, making it the cheapest Retina display-equipped iPad of all time. Both the iPhone and iPad are available now to order. For more on the iPad and its sales decline, click here.
  3. Apple raised some eyebrows on Tuesday with the announcement of a new video app it's calling Clips. The software, which is coming to the iPhone, lets users add virtual elements to their videos in ways that are reminiscent of Snapchat, Instagram, and other social video apps. The Clips app can film up to 30 minutes long and edited videos can last an hour. They can be shared on Apple's Messages app, as well as social media sites. Clips will be available when Apple releases iOS 10.3 in the coming days.
  4. Augmented reality could be Apple's "next big thing," according to a Bloomberg report this week. Apple has reportedly formed a massive team of engineers and designers charged with bundling the technology, which overlays virtual elements on the real world, into future products. Apple is expected to deliver some augmented reality features, like the ability to change the depth-of-field in photos, with the next iPhone. Future augmented reality gadgets could also be in the works.
  5. WikiLeaks released Vault 7 "Dark Matter" this week, a data dump featuring a handful of programs it say the CIA has used to surreptitiously monitor iPhones and Macs for nearly a decade. One of the programs, called NightSkies 1.2, is a "beacon/loader/implant tool" that CIA has been using since 2008. It allows the CIA operative to install a spying tool on "factory fresh iPhones," or devices that users haven't yet interacted with. What's more, the CIA might have intercepted shipments to customers, installed its program, and then sent the iPhone on its way to the recipient. Apple has since said that the exploits outlined in the WikiLeaks data dump are old and have all been patched.
  6. Alongside the iPad and iPhone this week, Apple also showcased several new Apple Watch bands for Spring 2017. The watch bands offer new colors and styles from Hermes and Nike.
  7. Remember all that talk last year about a secretive Apple "wireless device" that was floating around the FCC? Turns out it was a badge reader that might ultimately find its way to the new Apple headquarters, Apple Park. Snooze.
  8. Apple has expanded the amount of time you can sign up for its AppleCare+ service on the iPhone. You now have up to a year after purchasing the iPhone to take advantage of Apple's insurance option. Apple previously limited AppleCare+ purchases to sixty days after you buy your iPhone.

 

 

Play Video

Why Samsung Is Still In Big Trouble

Even after issuing an official apology for its exploding cellphones

One more thing...There's a Siri prank making its rounds on social media that suggest users say, "Hey Siri, 108" into their iPhones. It's a bad idea. Siri will automatically call 911 Emergency Services and users could clog up the critical emergency line.

Comment

Comment

Apple just made a deal that could reinvent the App Store for a new generation

 

Apple ios apps available now for Apple Watch.

If you want your Apple iPhone to do something new, you usually just head to the App Store and find a pre-made tool get it done. When smartphones came out, that was all you needed — an app for that.

Today you might view a photo attached to a text on your Apple Watch, drag and drop individual files between iCloud folders on your phone, download them to PhotoShop on your Mac to manipulate and recombine them, and re-upload the final versions to the cloud. Life today, in short, is more complicated.

What if you want one app to do something to another app? Say, call an Uber every time you order Seamless for pick-up? Or what if you want one device to do something to another one — like having photos from certain iPhone camera roll folders automatically download to your Mac?

That gets messy. There are few ready-made solutions that meet the Steve Jobs criteria of "three clicks or less."

Now, Apple is getting back to those roots, said John Feland of consumer experience analytics firm ‎Argus Insights.

The App Store took a novel interface — mobile — and simplified the portal connecting phones to the internet. Apple's newest acquisition, Workflow, has the potential to do the same thing on a higher level for the smart home, particularly for voice, by simplifying the way we connect our devices to each other, Feland said.

Workflow is an app that allows you to automate certain actions. (Here's a guide to how it works.) TechCrunch first reported Apple's takeover of the app, which Apple said had "outstanding use of iOS accessibility features, in particular an outstanding implementation for VoiceOver with clearly labeled items, thoughtful hints, and drag/drop announcements, making the app usable and quickly accessible to those who are blind or low-vision."

"Rather than asking Siri to do 12 things in a row, you can give it one task"

Apple is tight-lipped, so it's hard to know exactly what the engineers in Cupertino will come up with — Workflow could easily fade into the background of other products. But Forrester analyst Frank Gillett said it's unusual for Apple to acknowledge an acquisition and keep an app on the market, suggesting Workflow might stick around.

The software menu for your life

Workflow is somewhat of a visual programming tool that's easier than writing an app but probably too wonkish for the average consumer. Gillett said Apple might get under the hood, making it easier for every iPhone user to make DIY programs.

But another theory is that a new generation of developers, or "prosumers," could create "workflows" that act as micro or mini apps, Feland said. The Workflow app would then become a menu or "store" where consumers could go and select sets of commands that were premade by others.

For instance, a Workflow "developer" could create a "Gone Fishing" workflow that automatically locks the doors, turns down the thermostat, and shuts off the lights for the weekend. You open the Workflow app, search for the one you need, and when it's time to head out, all you have to do is tell Siri, "I'm going fishing."

That's important, Feland said, as Siri has "languished" behind competitors like Amazon's Alexa and Google Home, who have a more open platform ripe for integration across devices and apps.

Apple has already opened the gate to these kinds of integrations. Siri opened to developers last year, and users can now do things like buy an iTunes movie on one device and continue watching it on another.

Workflow is also important as Apple tries to extend computing experiences beyond your phone, which is increasingly become the "digital hub" that Steve Jobs once envisioned when he dropped "Computer" from the company's name.

"Some of this is Apple shifting velocity," Feland said. "Apple is trying to almost make iOS the core operating system that people are using. They are shifting to much more of a model that's not performance, but it's about connectivity."

So just like creating playlists was a heavy burden for the small screen of the iPod in the early 2000s, complex tasks can be overwhelming on a pair of AirPods, a Watch or the augmented reality glasses Apple is rumored to be making.

The solution for the iPod was iTunes on a personal computer -- a spread-out interface with plenty of room to create playlists.

In a similar way, Workflow could automate processes that are repetitive or tedious to do on a small screen.

But it could also force developers — Apple's loyalists — to adapt to a new way of making technology.

"By owning the technology, they are telling developers, this is going to be important so you should support it," Gillett said.

An Automator for the iPhone

The Workflow acquisition comes after Apple lost Mac automation expert Sal Soghoian in October, a departure that ruffled feathers in the software development community. Soghoian had been critical of using tools like app extensions to replicate the Automator function on Mac.

 

 

Comment

Comment

10 Laws of Social Media Marketing / Content Marketing.

10 Laws of Social Media Marketing

 

Leveraging the power of content and social media marketing can help elevate your audience and customer base in a dramatic way. But getting started without any previous experience or insight could be challenging.

It's vital that you understand social media marketing fundamentals. From maximizing quality to increasing your online entry points, abiding by these 10 laws will help build a foundation that will serve your customers, your brand and -- perhaps most importantly -- your bottom line.

1. The Law of Listening
Success with social media and content marketing requires more listening and less talking. Read your target audience’s online content and join discussions to learn what’s important to them. Only then can you create content and spark conversations that add value rather than clutter to their lives.

 

ADVERTISING

 

inRead invented by Teads

2. The Law of Focus
It’s better to specialize than to be a jack-of-all-trades. A highly-focused social media and content marketing strategy intended to build a strong brand has a better chance for success than a broad strategy that attempts to be all things to all people.

3. The Law of Quality
Quality trumps quantity. It’s better to have 1,000 online connections who read, share and talk about your content with their own audiences than 10,000 connections who disappear after connecting with you the first time.

4. The Law of Patience
Social media and content marketing success doesn’t happen overnight. While it’s possible to catch lightning in a bottle, it’s far more likely that you’ll need to commit to the long haul to achieve results.

5. The Law of Compounding
If you publish amazing, quality content and work to build your online audience of quality followers, they’ll share it with their own audiences on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, their own blogs and more.

This sharing and discussing of your content opens new entry points for search engines like Google to find it in keyword searches. Those entry points could grow to hundreds or thousands of more potential ways for people to find you online.

6. The Law of Influence
Spend time finding the online influencers in your market who have quality audiences and are likely to be interested in your products, services and business. Connect with those people and work to build relationships with them.

If you get on their radar as an authoritative, interesting source of useful information, they might share your content with their own followers, which could put you and your business in front of a huge new audience.

7. The Law of Value
If you spend all your time on the social Web directly promoting your products and services, people will stop listening. You must add value to the conversation. Focus less on conversions and more on creating amazing content and developing relationships with online influencers. In time, those people will become a powerful catalyst for word-of-mouth marketing for your business.

8. The Law of Acknowledgment
You wouldn’t ignore someone who reaches out to you in person so don’t ignore them online. Building relationships is one of the most important parts of social media marketing success, so always acknowledge every person who reaches out to you.

9. The Law of Accessibility
Don’t publish your content and then disappear. Be available to your audience. That means you need to consistently publish content and participate in conversations. Followers online can be fickle and they won’t hesitate to replace you if you disappear for weeks or months.

10. The Law of Reciprocity
You can’t expect others to share your content and talk about you if you don’t do the same for them. So, a portion of the time you spend on social media should be focused on sharing and talking about content published by others.  

Comment

Comment

VSCO update

VSCO Update Adds RAW Image Capturing and Editing on iOS 10 Devices

 

Popular photography app VSCO recently announced that users can now capture and edit images in RAW on the iPhone 6s, 6s Plus, iPhone 7, 7 Plus, and iPhone SE, while running iOS 10. Apple introduced the ability for third-party apps to support RAW shooting and editing in iOS 10, and began highlighting the professional photography feature soon after the launch of the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus.

Now, VSCO announced that its iOS app will support full RAW capturing, importing, and editing. The company’s blog post said that RAW offers “greater creative control” over an image, and users will be able to better adjust color balance and recover any lost highlight details in the process. RAW image capture isn’t supported on the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, but users of those devices will be able to import and edit RAW images.

 

IN OUR LATEST UPDATE, FULL RAW IMAGE SUPPORT INCLUDES RAW CAPTURE, IMPORTING AND EDITING, OFFERING GREATER CREATIVE CONTROL BY PRESERVING AN IMAGE’S ORIGINAL DATA AND CAPTURING EXACTLY WHAT YOUR CAMERA SEES. WITH RAW, YOU’RE ABLE TO RECOVER LOST HIGHLIGHT DETAIL, FREELY ADJUST COLOR BALANCE, AND BRING OUT THE FULL POTENTIAL OF RAW IMAGES FROM BOTH YOUR IPHONE AND DSLR CAMERA.

Another new feature introduced in the update is called “Film X,” and VSCO said that it will “give you the full expressive power of film itself,” leading to customized film modeling and high image quality through two new controls called “Character” and “Warmth.” Film X is an exclusive feature to the new membership plan, VSCO X, which runs for $19.99/year and grants users new “entitlements” each month like camera presets and advanced controls.

VSCO is available to download from the iOS App Store for free.


Source: Mac Rumors

 

Comment

Comment

L-Theanine and why you should take it.

Purchased some L-Theanine supplements today at whole foods. Each capsule contains about 100mg. L-Theanine is a naturally occurring amino acid. It is commonly found in Green Tea and is the explanation as to why the caffeine in green tea does not give you the same effect as coffee. L-Theanine counteracts the effects of caffeine and the jittery feeling you often feel. Calm and alert is what we are going for. L-Theanine is known to produce more Alpha brainwaves in humans. Synthetic theanine has been licensed for unlimited use in all foods (except infant food) in Japan since 1964. Basically when you see Suntheanine in products all it really means is it was synthetically extracted. Most experts would agree 1000mg is daily max for most people. 200-400mg being the most common dosage. There are a few drinks out that contain this powerful amino acid. Just Chill being the most popular, while a drink called Zenify is becoming my favorite because it contains 350mg, while Just chill contains 150mg. Benzodiazepines such as Xanax are highly physically addictive and and L-Theanine may help lowering your dosage or assisting with getting off them. Since L-Theanine has direct effects on your stress responses it will help with blood pressure, Theanine will increase GABA in the brain and could be taken with a GABA supplement. Check it out next you go shopping or are looking for a natural stress reliever. 

Comment

Comment

Steve Jobs Quotes




Steve Jobs was one of the founders of Apple Computers.Many people regard him as a visionary, design genius and one of the greatest business icons of our time. This is small collection of his quotes. 


"You know, my main reaction to this money thing is that it's humorous, all the attention to it, because it's hardly the most insightful or valuable thing that's happened to me."

2. My model for business is The Beatles. They were four guys who kept each other's kind of negative tendencies in check. They balanced each other, and the total was greater than the sum of the parts. That's how I see business: Great things in business are never done by one person, they're done by a team of people.≈

3. Creativity is just connecting things. When you ask creative people how they did something, they feel a little guilty because they didn't really do it. They just saw something. It seemed obvious to them after a while."

4. "Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works."


5. "When you're a carpenter making a beautiful chest of drawers, you're not going to use a piece of plywood on the back, even though it faces the wall and nobody will see it. You'll know it's there, so you're going to use a beautiful piece of wood on the back. For you to sleep well at night, the aesthetic, the quality, has to be carried all the way through."

6. "My job is not to be easy on people. My job is to make them better."

7. "Have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow know what you truly want to become."

8." Let's go invent tomorrow rather than worrying about what happened yesterday."

9. " If today were the last day of your life, would you want to do what you are about to do today?"

10."Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to
do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven't found it yet, keep looking. Don't settle. As with all matters of the heart, you'll know when you find it."

11. "Life is about creating and living experiences that are worth sharing."

12." We don't get a chance to do that many things, and every one should be really excellent. Because this is our life. Life is brief, and then you die, you know? And we've all chosen to do this with our lives. So it better be damn good. It better be worth it."

13. "Be a yardstick of quality. Some people aren't used to an environment where excellence is expected."

14. "You can't connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backward. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something--your gut, destiny, life and karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life."

15. "Here's to the crazy ones, the misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round pegs in the square holes.... The ones who see things differently--they're not fond of rules.... You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them, but the only thing you can't do is ignore them because they change things.... They push the human race forward, and while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius, because the ones who are crazy enough to think that they can change the world are the ones who do."

16. "Sometimes when you innovate, you make mistakes. It is best to admit them quickly, and get on with improving your other innovations."

17. "Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life. Don't be trapped by dogma - which is living with the results of other people's thinking. Don't let the noise of others' opinions drown out your own inner voice."

18."Technology is nothing. What's important is that you have a faith in people, that they're basically good and smart, and if you give them tools, they'll do wonderful things with them."

19. "Sometimes when you innovate, you make mistakes. It is best to admit them quickly, and get on with improving your other innovations."

20. "Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven't found it yet, keep looking. Don't settle. As with all matters of the heart, you'll know when you find it."

21. "Bottom line is, I didn't return to Apple to make a fortune. I've been very lucky in my life and already have one. When I was 25, my net worth was $100 million or so. I decided then that I wasn't going to let it ruin my life. There's no way you could ever spend it all, and I don't view wealth as something that validates my intelligence."

22. "My favorite things in life don't cost any money. It's really clear that the most precious resource we all have is time."

23. We don't get a chance to do that many things, and every one should be really excellent. Because this is our life. Life is brief, and then you die, you know? And we've all chosen to do this with our lives. So it better be damn good. It better be worth it."



24. "Your time is limited, don't waste it living someone else's life. Don't be trapped by dogma, which is living the result of other people's thinking. Don't let the noise of other opinions drown your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition, they somehow already know what you truly want to become."

25. I think if you do something and it turns out pretty good, then you should go do something else wonderful, not dwell on it for too long.

Steve Jobs loved Bob Dylan. By far this was his favorite artist. Jobs had tracks from six Stones albums on his iPod. But, he said, "somebody else could have replicated the Stones. Nobody could have been Dylan or the Beatles."

27. We have always been shameless about stealing great ideas

28. "Remembering that I'll be dead soon is the most important tool I've ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything--all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure--these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important


29. "Innovation is saying no to a thousand things.

30." Quality is more important than quantity. One home run is much better than two doubles."

31. "I'm the only person I know that's lost a quarter of a billion dollars in one year... It's very character-building."





32." An iPod, a phone, an internet mobile communicator. . . An iPod, a phone, an internet mobile communicator. . . An iPod, a phone, an internet mobile communicator. . . Do you get it? These are not three separated devices. This is one device, and we are calling it iPhone."


33. When I was 17, I read a quote that went something like: 'If you live each day as if it was your last, someday you'll most certainly be right.' It made an impression on me, and since then, for the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: 'If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?' And whenever the answer has been 'No' for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.



34. I know what it's like to have your private life painted in the worst possible light in front of a lot of people. I've learned what it's like for everyone you meet after that to sort of have preconceptions about you. . . It's been a character-building experience.



35. You just make the best product you can, and you don't put it out until you feel it's right. But no matter what you think intellectually, your heart is beating pretty fast right before people see what you've produced.


36. Good PR educates people; that's all it is. You can't con people in this business. The products speak for themselves.

37. My mother taught me to read before I went to school, so I was pretty bored in school, and I turned into a little terror. You should have seen us in third grade. We basically destroyed our teacher. We would let snakes loose in the classroom and explode bombs. Things changed in the fourth grade, though. One of the saints in my life is this woman named Imogene Hill, who was a fourth-grade teacher who taught this advanced class. She got hip to my whole situation in about a month and kindled a passion in me for learning things. I learned more that year than I think I learned in any year in school.





38. "Apple was about as pure of a Silicon Valley company as you could imagine. We started in a garage. Woz and I both grew up in Silicon Valley. Our role model was Hewlett-Packard. And so I guess that's what we went into it thinking. Hewlett-Packard, you know, Jobs and Wozniak."

39. "I think Pixar has the opportunity to be the next Disney -- not replace Disney -- but be the next Disney."

40." You just are yourself, and you work with other people. If you're inspiring to other people, it makes an impression on them. For example, I hear people at Disney talking about what it was like to work with Walt. They loved him. I know that people at Pixar are going to talk about their days with John Lasseter in the same way. Who knows? Maybe someday somebody will feel that way about working with me. I have no idea."


41. "Computer companies fall on a spectrum of enthusiasm for manufacturing. On the left end are companies that look at manufacturing as a necessary evil, who wish they didn't have to do it. And at the far right you have people who look at manufacturing as a competitive advantage. Clearly a lot of the Japanese companies look at themselves that way. Unfortunately a lot of American companies look at manufacturing as a necessary evil."



42."I think the same philosophy that drives the product has to drive everything else if you want to have a great company. Manufacturing, for example, demands just as much thought and strategy as the product. If you don't pay attention to your manufacturing, it will limit the kind of product you can build and engineer. Some companies view manufacturing as a necessary evil, and some view it as something more neutral. But we view it instead as a tremendous opportunity to gain a competitive advantage. I've thought that ever since I visited Japan in the early '80s.
Steve Jobs, 1989






43. Japan's very interesting. Some people think it copies things. I don't think that anymore. I think what they do is reinvent things. They will get something that's already been invented and study it until they thoroughly understand it. In some cases, they understand it better than the original inventor. Out of that understanding, they will reinvent it in a more refined second-generation version. That strategy works only when what they're working with isn't changing very much, the stereo industry and the automobile industry are two examples. When the target is moving quickly, they find it very difficult, because that reinvention cycle takes a few years. As long as the definition of what a personal computer is keeps changing at the rate that it is, they will have a very hard time.





44. This will be the most important thing I've ever done. (on the iPad before launch)









45. "You always have to keep pushing to innovate. Dylan could have sung protest songs forever and probably made a lot of money, but he didn't. He had to move on, and when he did, by going electric in 1965, he alienated a lot of people. His 1966 Europe tour was his greatest. . .The Beatles were the same way. They kept evolving, moving, refining their art. That's what I've always tried to do -- keep moving. Otherwise, as Dylan says, if you are not busy being born, you're busy dying."

46. No one wants to die. Even people who want to go to heaven don't want to die to get there. And yet death is the destination we all share. No one has ever escaped it. And that is as it should be, because Death is very likely the single best invention of Life. It is Life's change agent. It clears out the old to make way for the new. Right now the new is you, but someday not too long from now, you will gradually become the old and be cleared away. Sorry to be so dramatic, but it is quite true. Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life. Don't be trapped by dogma, which is living with the results of other people's thinking. Don't let the noise of others' opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.



47. "We've got 25,000 people at Apple. About 10,000 of them are in the stores. And my job is to work with sort of the top 100 people, that's what I do. That doesn't mean they're all vice presidents. Some of them are just key individual contributors. So when a good idea comes, you know, part of my job is to move it around, just see what different people think, get people talking about it, argue with people about it, get ideas moving among that group of 100 people, get different people together to explore different aspects of it quietly, and, you know -- just explore things." 

48."An iPod, a phone, an internet mobile communicator. . . An iPod, a phone, an internet mobile communicator. . . An iPod, a phone, an internet mobile communicator. . . Do you get it? These are not three separated devices. This is one device, and we are calling it iPhone."

49." [On his 1$ annual salary] I make 50 cents for showing up . . . and the other 50 cents is based on my performance."

50. "We want to reinvent the phone. What's the killer app? The killer app is making calls! It's amazing how hard it is to make calls on most phones. We want to let you use contacts like never before -- sync your iPhone with your PC or mac."

Comment

Comment

The Steven Spielberg story

The Steven Spielberg story

 

 

Another great story of how desire transmuted itself into definite action.Spielberg is one of the all time great motion picture directors. He dreamed of being a movie director from childhood. He began making amateur films with a primitive camera when he was still a child, and the dream never subsided. 

How Spielberg broke into Universal Studios is a legend in the movie industry. He took the studio tour and during the tour sneaked off the train. He hid behind two sound stages until the tour ended. When he left at the end of the day, he made a point of saying a few words to gate guard.

Day after day, he went back to the studio for three months. He walked past the guard, waved at him and he waved back. He always wore a suit and a carried a briefcase, letting the guard assume he was one of the students with a summer job. He made a point of befriending writers, directors, editors. He even found a vacant office, took it over and listed his name in the directory.

He made it his business to get to know Sid Shienberg, then head of production for the studio’s TV arm. He showed his college film project , which so impressed Shienberg that he put the young man under contract. 

His first feature film was highly acclaimed critically but overall was a failure in the box office. This did not stop him when aiming to direct Jaws. Jaws had already been cast with a high profile director, but Steven was eager to get the part. He convinced the producers to choose him as the director. Jaws had technical issues and budget problems. Overall this did not stop from being a success in two avenues. The box office release broke records and critics loved it as well. It took an unheard of 60 million at that time. Over the next years he directed many other Films. When he and two other hollywood moguls created their own company they chose to call it “Dreamworks”. Keep chasing your dreams. 

 

Comment

Comment

Quit social media | Dr. Cal Newport | TEDxTysons Review./ Notes

    Interesting Take on Social Media. The Speaker starts by mentioning he has no Social Media Accounts / Profile as a conscious choice. States he is more successful at business because he actually does not use social media. Dr. Cal Then states how Social Media is essentially Entertainment instead of being something productive. Which is true in a way because you get a dose of satisfication seeing a notification pop up. On some level thats is really the defining feature of apps now. Think about your favorite Notification or Approved interruption that comes on your Phone. Basically Attention = Profit. Just some Thoughts / notes I had on this Ted Talk. 
Thanks for reading! 

Comment