Ring Automative, car lights

Posted: February 25th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Photography | No Comments »

BMW-car-lights3, originally uploaded by simonmurray66.

This car was shot in NDP studios Leeds, seems to me it’s one of the only studios that can accommodate car photography, let me know if I’m wrong here. The general temptation was to light the car {the subject} and/or the background {the context} but not in this shoot.
The idea was to feature the lights, but even then, not to shoot the lights as product, but as more of a lifestyle, what feeling one has when the lights go on!


Google threatens Chrome address bar with death • The Register

Posted: February 23rd, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Techy, Web Detective | Tags: , , | No Comments »

Google threatens Chrome address bar with death • The Register.

Google is exploring several “major” changes to the Chrome user interface, including a particularly compact user interface that actually hides the URL address bar when pages aren’t loading.

In a recent post to the Chromium developer mailing list entitled “Major UI efforts”, Google man Jeff Chang pointed to a public page describing four “window UI variants” for the Chromium OS project.

The first – known as “classic navigation” – is similar to the existing Chrome UI, but as Conceivably Tech observes, another layout receiving serious consideration – “compact navigation” – would be a significant departure from the browser as we know it.

Chromium is the open source incarnation of the Chrome browser, while Chromium OS serves as the basis for the upcoming Chrome OS operating system. Though the UI variants are intended for Chromium OS, Chang is writing on a Chromium mailing list and seems to indicate they’ll be a part of Chromium as well. In any event, the two projects are meant to dovetail.

Currently, Chrome’s URL address bar is always visible, alongside the navigation and menu buttons and just below your row of tabs. With the new “compact” design, navigation buttons are moved up alongside the tabs, and the address bar is only visible when a webpage is loading – though you can bring it back by clicking on the page’s tab.

New Google Chrome interface


iPhone Makes Up 50 Percent of Smartphone Web Traffic In U.S., Android Already 5 Percent

Posted: February 18th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Marketing and SEO, Techy, Web Design | No Comments »

iPhone Makes Up 50 Percent of Smartphone Web Traffic In U.S., Android Already 5 Percent.

Heres a very good reason to be thinking very carefully about how we go about designing websites and making sure they are fit for purpose on different devices.

Yes, it’s going to take ages delivering for them all, but the good thing is just now that if we think about iPhones we are getting 50% of the Smartphones.

Most importantly, iPhones don’t support Flash so remember that when site designing. Include an iPhone style sheet if there is Flash and serve an image and some text instead, that’s always going to be better for SEO anyway.

The iPhone now accounts for 50 percent of mobile Web traffic from smartphones in the U.S., according to an AdMob Mobile Metrics report released this morning. Over the past six months, the iPhone has taken share from Blackberry and Windows Mobile. In August 2008, the iPhone made up only 10 percent of mobile Web traffic from smartphones. During the same time, Blackberry’s share has gone from 32 percent to 21 percent (with the Curve and the Pearl coming in stronger than the Storm), while Windows Mobile has taken an even bigger hit, declining from 30 percent to 13 percent. Palm is also down to 7 percent from 19 percent six months ago.

The only other smartphone operating system that is showing gains in mobile Web usage is Android, which has captured a strong 5 percent share just three months after launch. And that is up from 3 percent in January. The gains shown by the iPhone and Android show what is possible when phones are built with fully capable browsers and support a rich array of Web apps.

On a worldwide basis, smartphones running on the Symbian OS (mostly from Nokia) still dominate mobile Web traffic with a 43 percent share. But that is down from 64 percent in August. The iPhone has gone from 4 percent to 33 percent of mobile Web traffic on a worldwide basis. All the other mobile operating systems are down as well.

This data is extrapolated from AdMob’s mobile ad network and only looks at smartphone share. Overall, smartphones generated 33 percent of worldwide mobile Web traffic, up from 26 percent six months ago. The full report is embedded below.


Google Places

Posted: February 17th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Marketing and SEO | No Comments »


Last April, Google converted its Small Business Center into Google Places, where businesses can go to claim a listing on Google and Google Maps, a re-branding effort that has become part of Google’s push into local searches and local advertising. Included in those features was Google Tags, a service that allows local businesses to enhance their Google Maps listings by providing a link to special offers, coupons, or back to their website — indicated by a small, yellow tag. Tags are offered for a flat fee at $25 a month.

Last week, Google further ramped up its foray into local, officially rolling out Boost, their advertising solution to help local business owners to easily create online search ads from directly within their Google Places account. This “set it and forget it” service targets local businesses that have stopped using AdWords due to its relative complexity and the time required to manage ad campaigns, essentially re-creating a subscription-based model. A business just has to add Boost to their listing in Google Places, set up a monthly budget, and select relevant categories. Boost does the rest, advertising on Google and Google Maps. (You may have seen the blue pin at the top of a Google Map search? That’s a Boost ad.)


BBC News – IBM supercomputer challenges humans on TV quiz

Posted: February 14th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Fun | No Comments »

BBC News – IBM supercomputer challenges humans on TV quiz.

A supercomputer, designed by IBM, is to face two human contestants on the US quiz show Jeopardy.

Watson will pit its wits against two of the game’s most successful players.

At stake is a $1 million prize (£620,000) and the reputation of the field of artificial intelligence.


Website Design Trends for 2011

Posted: February 12th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Marketing and SEO, Web Design, Web Detective | No Comments »

Website Design 2011 | ShutterVoice Review.

by Arghya Chatterjee

Website design is the face of a website that tells the story about its body, previously it was done to stylize the site but with the advance of web technology, designing is a part of interface synchronizing the site with tabs and links. As the web technology is advancing with the invention and modification of languages, designing is getting a whole new role of improvising the website content with proper looks.


The changes are going to affect deigns in the coming future is the new languages and standards browsers going to adapt in the near future. Along with Apple, many of the web designers have deserted building animations in flash and instead they are using JavaScript which is far more stable and less buggy, another added advantage of JavaScript is the less size of application files unlike flash which takes time to load for slow connections. Designing in JavaScript has opened a whole new set of options which was not possible for any design in flash.

But as the time is moving ahead, programmers and designers are search for better productive solutions like CSS3 or HTML5 which has variety of rendering animation within the consolidated boundary of ethical designing but not limited to new definitions like advanced typography, in-built transitions and 360 degree virtual resolution. These new features are quite popular now in the beginning stage and have a bright chance to be adopted by the mass in the coming year of 2011.

Web 2.0 Design standards are popular now a day with glossy and shady outlook and may remain like that for some time until anything replaces that soon. Big texts with matching sets of color are fashionable for any website with proper navigation in the home page. Those days are gone when the introductory page of any site was made completely with flash and sometimes used to show loading resulting in keep the user waiting for a couple of minutes, speed and simplicity are one of the main criteria now and that is exactly why HTML5 standards are coming into main trend, its fast, stable and it can deliver in a wide versatile format.


BBC News – Starbucks drops its name and the word coffee from logo

Posted: February 8th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Design and Illustration | No Comments »

New Starbucks logo

BBC News – Starbucks drops its name and the word coffee from logo

Starbucks, the world’s largest chain of coffee shops, has unveiled a new logo which it says indicates its intention to move beyond its core product.

The US giant’s new logo does away with the words “Starbucks” and “coffee”, leaving just the firm’s white on green image of a twin-tailed siren.


Romey on her way to the ball

Posted: February 7th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Photography | No Comments »

Romey on her way to the ball, originally uploaded by simonmurray66.

Shot I took recently in the studio, Romey is the model, and I had a fantastic make-up artist – Jessie Young and clothes stylist Claire Bentley-Smith.


Helping others use the web

Posted: February 6th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Web Detective | No Comments »

I recently had an exhausting experience trying to track down personal contact details of a guy who worked for an estate agents that went bust. They had mistakenly taken my parents title deeds to a house in Spain that they were wanting to sell, the next day the company went under and immediately vacated their shop in Scotland. There was no reply from their website as you can imagine, but I eventually tracked somebody down thanks to the internet, some carefully worded emails and was able to get the deeds returned.

It turned out the deeds werent even the deeds at all. Instead it was just a pile of documentation on their spanish property that they were trying to sell through the estate agents.

Not too worry though, I figured as much. Before the package was returned by the estate agent I got together the documents that we did have (which of course were all in Spanish) scanned them and with further research, online translations, and emails with some friendly spanish property lawyers realised that we had what is known as a ‘copy of the deeds’ all along.

During the whole experience, and by digging around on the internet I found out that the estate agent went bust, had money owed to the tax man, plus I had the names and indeed in some cases the addresses of the director and ex-director, who turned out to be helpful, as they didn’t mean to have the package.

Even though the whole debacle was a red herring it still taught me a lot. If I didn’t intervene, my parents would have worried that the deeds were gone, so I was able to put them at ease. initially they were using the Phonebook and a surname (about all they had) to do their research.

I really feel that there are people out there that do not know how to go about checking a company’s credentials, seeing if a builder really is FMB registered and whether the charity that comes round to collect clothes is bona fide. Other than the internet there really seems to be no way to research these things. Only through the power of the net can you see testimonials about a persons genuine service, or whether a new product is compatible with something they already own.

Many people, mostly from the older generation may not be quite as familiar with turning to the internet to do research on a tradesman or a company. Many still do not own a computer, have never been on-line or who’s only experience is using a PC in a library – these are the people I would like to help. It annoys me when some older people are seen as soft targets for disreputable tradesman or unsolicited marketing telephone calls, it leaves them feeling quite helpless.

I’m wondering wether the ‘Web Detective’ can help here. Sometimes some searches prove fruitful for me after just a few seconds, others take a bit longer, but very rarely do I find an answer. This may be a service I could offer to people.

I would appreciate any thoughts or contact on the matter.