Free Pictures for Your Website

Picture this:

You need to find some free pictures for your website and you have been to all the normal destinations that most folks know about, but the pictures there just were not the right ones.

That same scenario happened to me today while I was updating one of my other websites and it just so happened that I was also looking for some information about changing a part of my WordPress framework and on the codex at the bottom there was a list of five sites that were being linked to for downloading free photos and textures.Free picture from Image*After

One of the links on the list was a link to a website that offers Only Free Images and they are just restricting the way you can offer them to others; No using their images and textures to become a competition with their site, Fair enough I say! All other uses are allowed and you don’t need to give them credit or money for the images either.

So what’s the name of this website you say? Image*After is the name and it looks as if it’s been there for some time, but it still functions flawlessly and I found some great Free Images in their collection.

Image*After also has a forum and there is many posts in there too. So, if you find yourself at a loss to find that perfect image for your next blog post or maybe header image and even a background texture because you thought you looked at them all, well this one is well worth the effort of searching through to find it and for free!

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Posted in Free Stuff, Reviews | Tagged free images, free stock photos, free textures | Leave a comment

Free Software from Serif

Free Software is always a hit and miss opportunity, some are good some are a complete waste of your time.

Serif software is in the category of good free software and they have been making these titles for quite a few years, over 12 years, at least that is how long I’ve been using their software.

If you are looking for a program or suite of programs that you can use for home and/or small business then you might want to check them out. Watch the video below to get an idea of what to expect when you visit the Free Serif Software website, it is just a couple of minutes long.

The titles available are:

  • PagePlus: Desktop Publishing program with may good features
  • WebPlus: Web design program that is mainly template based
  • DrawPlus: A feature rich Drawing program using Vector based tools and layers with the ability to create 3d and animations and Text graphics
  • PhotoPlus: Photo Manipulation program that lets you use layers and effects similar to Gimp or Photoshop, just not as powerful
  • PanoramaPlus: Stitching Photos together to make panoramic scenes and 360 degree animations
  • MoviePlus: Video and DVD authoring program using multi-track editing, better than Windows(r) MovieMaker
  • Digital Scrapbooking: A Scrapbooking program with design templates or design your own layouts with the tools provided

These programs are Full Working Versions. Serif will require you to register the software with them to unlock it, not much to ask for fully functional programs.

Serif does want you to use the latest versions of their software, but the cost for them compared to something like Adobe programs is very reasonable, not that I am selling these for them, because I’m not.

Bottom line, if you are used to being offered crappy free software and cannot trust the suppliers of those types of programs, then maybe it would be worth a look at something like Free Serif Software.

I stated earlier that I’ve been buying their programs for over 12 years and they always have supplied the best deals compared to others in their field.

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Posted in Free Stuff, Reviews, Small Business | Tagged free software, full version programs, small business software | Leave a comment

Matt Mullenweg on the State of the Word 2012

Just watched Matt Mullenweg and The State of the Word 2012,

very cool, about 50 min. but the main topics are:
WordPress.org site:
Log-in and show favorite plugins
Make the Plugin directory more Amazon-like
Show reviews of plugins with stars at different levels
and let plugin authors respomd to the reviews

Dashboard/ UI:
More of the front-end editing of your blog like with the
custom header, background, color, etc. editor

Facts about WP:
Approx 44,000,000 downloads over the last year
Twenty-Twelve theme coming in 3.5
3.5 to be delivered on Dec 5th 2012

New features coming soon
Support for the Retina Macbook
New NUX – New User eXperience screens
New Media upload tools to be able to upload galleries
that are not attached to a post
New tab on WP.org called “Get Involved” and links to all the
wordpress.org/make/*** -collaboration pages
“Feature Parity” between WP.org & WP.com
New features for Jetpack namely: email subscriptions, post by email,
publicize and stats
Blog reader interface when you open or create a blog on WP.com works on desktop
and mobile and soon to iPad

More Facts:
5,000,000 downloads of the mobile apps for WP and the tablet interface is getting
more work
More people taking the poll for users of WP 27,000 and two thirds of them
international
66% of users state they use it as only a CMS and not a blog platform
Client types vary with small biz and individuals making the most of the userbase
Non-profit, gov. and education sites next then large biz and enterprise
coming in last
20,000/27,000 people surveyed making their living from creating wordpress sites
Bruce Springsteen and The Rolling Stones use WP for their sites
16.7% of the top 1,000,000 websites are on WP

Whats Coming:
Looking to the future of WP as an App engine and ultimately a mobile UI
Better media tools, More timely releases with 3 releases a year,
Better User Interface, More Community Summit attendance, Smart Iteration, Updates,
Updates, Updates, in the background like how Chrome does and not having to think
whether or not you are on the latest release, Choosing to NOT Update WP from
within your host on sites that use the 1-click install
Make WP more Newbie friendly with user functions available according to skill
level
“Start writing your first post in our redesigned post editor and venture to the full-screen button in the editing toolbar to enter the new distraction-free writing or zen mode, my personal favorite feature of the release(3.2)” -Matt M.

Lower the Attricion rate for WP
Real-Time Editing for those who collaborate on sites like on Google Docs

I think that the State of the Word is looking bright and so is the future of everything WordPress.

If you are not currently using WordPress to build your website or have not even considered making a site because maybe you thought it was beyond you, then think again my friend, because you can do it!

If you enjoyed this post or found it useful, please consider my Caffine Level - I drink LOADS of Coffee!

Posted in Free Stuff, Reviews | Tagged matt mullenweg, state of the word, WordPress, wordpress news | 1 Comment

Using Website Analytics For Mining Your Data

You can use Analytics or Insights or Statistics to find out how visitors are using your website. How they might be just hitting your website, taking a first look and clicking on the back button or just closing the page and NEVER returning.

Of course, your visitors may be loving what you made available for them to consume and in this case you really do want to know how they are consuming it.

Here is a quick slideshow to give you more of an understanding of just what is involved in accessing that information.

Jyotindra Zaveri+ Follow
WEB Analytics – Data Mining – MIS – eBusiness website
by Jyotindra Zaveri

WEB Analytics – Data Mining – MIS – eBusiness website

View more presentations from Jyotindra Zaveri

If you are trying to figure out if your website is doing the job that you intended, then it is a good idea to get as much information about your sites and profiles as you can.
Most analytics software is available for free and easy enough to use even if you’ve never tried to use it before.
I use Google Analytics for my sites and then for sites like Facebook and LinkedIn there are the ones they supply, they are easy to see and understand and invaluable to your business.

If you enjoyed this post or found it useful, please consider my Caffine Level - I drink LOADS of Coffee!

Posted in Free Stuff, Small Business, Traffic | Tagged analytics, Insights, Statistics | Leave a comment

Using Your Smart Phone to Stay Organized Though Mobile Apps

For a long period of time, people have been carrying all sizes of books in the name of diaries. Though they were of great of help to the carrier in terms of organization, they were greatly cumbersome. Smart phones have completely changed the scenario as you no longer need to bother about carrying a diary with you all the time as these smart phones work like both personal computers and mobile phones.Use your smartphone to replace your diary

Your smart phone has all the contact information about your customers, friends and family members. You could even save files on the smart phone to work on them at a later time, or simply for backup so that you could recover them if your main personal computer crashes. In today’s busy world, this smart phone has applications that help you organize your life. Not only would you never miss an important business meeting with your smart phone, but you don’t have to miss a call while you are driving.

You could use the voice command option to make your phone do several tasks like answering a call while you are driving. For instance, if you are driving and want to make a call, you just tell the phone to look up the number in the phonebook and make that call. All you have to do is put on your Bluetooth headset and you are able to communicate with the other person. You can use this voice recognition feature to command your phone to do a number of other things like, looking up for something in the internet, switching profiles and even changing ringtone among others.

This is a great phone if you travel a lot as it lets you keep all your travel details properly organized. You only are you able to share your travel details with your friends and family easily, but you could even analyze your travel data and organize your flights in a better manner. This app does all this with less or sometimes no user intervention. An example of this app is Tripit, which is most appropriate for frequent travelers to stay organized.

This device is the best smart phone for those who have interest in the entertainment industry. You could use your smart phone to track all the latest news and gossip about the entertainment industry. It gives you information on the latest movie and music releases and information on any upcoming events and concerts. With this app, you cannot miss any important concert or release. An example of these great smart phone apps is the Flixter, an app that is guaranteed to keep you up-to-date, and organized for the upcoming events.

Your smart phone functions like an excellent personal assistant when it comes to remembering details of credit card payments, bills, etc. It has a great application to help you track all your bills and relevant payments along with the due dates. It also organizes this information in a way that you will easily understand. If you are looking for more information, then you can participate in any of the various forums, such as Community HTC One forum, HTC One X forum, HTC One XL forum, HTC One S forum, HTC One V forum or the HTC EVO 4G LTE forum.

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Posted in SEO, Small Business, Traffic | Tagged htc evo 4g lte, htc one, htc one s, htc one v, htc one x, htc one xl | Leave a comment

Web Hosting companies are not created equally

Your host is probably one of the most important parts of your online presence. But how many people choose to host their websites on a platform that just does not measure up to their expectations.

My guess is millions. What is the reason for the bad choice? Well, many folks just do not know what to shop for when they are wanting to put a website online.

Most likely, they are more concerned with getting a place online and trying to get traffic to that place that they never even give any thought to the hosting company. Never any consideration to what they will do for you and more importantly, what they just plain don’t do.

It was the same for me and not just on one occasion. I have been on the short end of the stick many times and always vowed never to get a crappy web host again, so why did I?

To be totally honest, it was just one factor that I was giving priority to and that was the cost. Sure, I was concerned with whether they were going to let me have enough space and bandwidth to host more than one site on there.
I was concerned with the fact that I needed an easy to use control panel like CPanel and that they supplied the code stuff like WordPress and shopping cart code that was easy to set-up.

So, what is so bad about looking at my choices in this way?
When your priority is: how much is it going to cost for a year’s hosting, then you are committing a big mistake. The reason being is this, there are several companies that will give you cheap hosting and not only that, they will supply an easy to administer dashboard like vDeck or CPanel, but they limit you in a lot of other ways, too many to list here.

That is why you should make your decision based on a number of factors and not letting cost be the priority in the final decision.

Here is a list of the Top 5 priorities for choosing a host that will be used to serve more than one domain, preferably more, and for being easy to the install scripts (WordPress, etc.) that could be a burden to install from just uploading by File Transfer Protocol (FTP):

  1. Reliability and uptime
  2. Bandwidth Allowance
  3. Unlimited SQL Databases
  4. Updated PHP processor module
  5. Trustworthy Help with chat and phone access

Please note that these are my own priorities which have been chosen after several years of cheap hosting companies taking advantage of the fact that some folks (like me) simply will not do the  required research into what it means to be a good web host. 

If you are just interested in getting a website up and running in minimal time with little fuss and you are not planning on getting any visitors other than the ones you tell to go there, then by all means get the one that costs the least and looks nice and shiny!

I am not going to recommend any host in this article because it would be useless without first knowing what your requirements are. Just remember, to save a lot of time (time=money) and bad feelings, it would serve you better to shop around and do some reading from trusted sources.

If you enjoyed this post or found it useful, please consider my Caffine Level - I drink LOADS of Coffee!

Posted in Small Business | Tagged free hosting, hosting, Web Hosting | 1 Comment