My Writings. My Thoughts.
I’ve seen this happen too many times.
It all starts with a simple Company name-change. This rebranding results in a new domain name, and the old one is allowed to expire. Sometime after the new site is live complaints start coming in. The old domain is now a porno site.
These problems can be so easily avoided with the price of domains what they are. The domains should have been retained, and made to forward without gripping to the new site, or to a page on the new site explaining the transition. Continue Reading
URL shorteners have gotten a lot more use in the last couple years with the increasing popularity of Twitter. I’ve even been seeing them in print publications like .net magazine. Who wouldn’t want a shorter and more memorable URL? Shorteners are a great way of saving space and characters. As great as they are, every silver lining must have a cloud. Continue Reading
It’s official, the McBlains and Debut Creative are moving from Kincardine to Burlington! Kristi and I have loved our time here in Kincardine and will cherish many memories here. Our first house, the friendly people, the sunsets and our friends. With a recent technical consultancy opportunity for my wife Kristi came the chance to be much closer to our family. Add to this the fact that we’d no longer be at the mercy of Bruce County winters, and it comes down to an offer to good to refuse!
What does this mean for me, the client of Debut Creative!?
Understandably this might worry some of my local Debut clients; but let me assure you that 95% of all the great work we do is for clients hundreds of kilometers away. With the exception of some understandable moving-related scatterbrainedness, it will be business-as-usual for DEBUT.
There is a harsh reality that a website owner must face once their site is up: It’s not simply enough to have the website. The Internet isn’t a Field of Dreams; just because you built it doesn’t mean they will come.
So your site is built – now what? The truth is building the site is the easy part. Now you have to work on it. Don’t dismay! This is the fun and engaging part. Continue Reading
My personal site ArleyM.com has been an ASP site for about six years now, but the time has finally come to port over to WordPress and PHP. A lot of the heavy lifting was done over a year ago when I experimented with using Blogger as an RSS powering blog engine, but there was still some content fueled by a Microsoft Access Database.
In early 2004 I started a database of my Top5 high rotation songs of the week. This was a very simple database table with eight fields. It’s been very rewarding to see this progress kept, so naturally I want to bring it into the new site. On the former version of the site ASP calls the database, and repeats each row of data in a table. I could just copy and paste the HTML tables after they’ve been rendered, but where’s the fun in that? I’d prefer to have each table fall into my blog on the appropriate date for the last five years. Continue Reading
Recently a client asked me why WordPress was better than creating your own CMS. Long story short; I think WordPress is really good. Creating your own CMS seems like re-inventing the wheel. I do think there is merit in trying other things. I list some alternatives that are interesting. Continue Reading
July 2009, Issue Three
This spring marked the launch of the long awaited Debut Creative website. After three ironic years in business, we finally have a website to call our own! Will it rank well in the 2010 Reboot Contest against Pixel Flex? Stay tuned! Continue Reading
When you have a site that multiple designers, developers or contributors might be working on you run the risk of stepping on one another’s toes, losing data, and at its worse; breaking something on your website. This can happen very easily. Take the following image as a very basic example. Let’s say you have a yellow page with an A on it. Person 1 decides the page should be blue, Person 2 decides the letter should be B. Both changes are done at once. Who ever uploads last has their change live on the site. Continue Reading
My first taste of the Internet in 1994 was exciting; after finally getting the impossibly long URL right I got onto the NASA home page which as I recall was little more than text. I had no way of knowing just how cool and dynamic the web was going to become. I still have no idea what shape things will take in the future; but I have three predictions for some usability changes that I expect we’ll start seeing in the coming months. Continue Reading
There’s been a lot of buzz about IE6, and it’s getting louder. In fact, if you’re using the infamous browser you may reading this post from the browser-specific warning link on this site. So what gives? Web designers want you to upgrade due to security issues and lack of support for common Web Standards that modern browsers use; but it’s not just for us. It’s for your own good!
Did you know IE6 is older than the first iPod, Windows XP, the Xbox and Canon Digital SLR Cameras? Technology evolves at a rapid rate, and the internet is no exception. This ancient browser may be holding you back from experiencing the Internet the way it was intended.
In the coming months more and more sites like Digg, YouTube and others are dropping support for this old browser. Don’t be sad! Upgrade right now if you can, it’s free. Plus, you’ll love Tabbed browsing :)
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is as important today as it has ever been. We’re well beyond a trillion web pages on the Internet now; and the more crowded it gets the harder it can be to be heard. SEO can be a complicated beast; Google was reported as changing their search engine algorithm over 400 times in 2007. That’s more than once a day!
There is a lot of documentation on improving your sites SEO; and it is often broken down into a few key practices: Continue Reading
Some savvy WordPress theme junkies may recognize this websites design (as of May 1, 2009) to be the Woo Theme Irresistible. As a web designer / developer I’m always hesitant to use themes, usually opting to design from scratch, or at the very least drastically overhaul a theme to fit a design.
It’s been nearly three years since I conceived the name Debut Creative, a lot has happened in that time.
Since 2006 I moved away from the city I lived in for twenty years, I left my comfortable job as the New Media Developer of a marketing agency, I married, bought a house, and I estimate that I have worked on up to forty websites – but I never worked on my own website. Continue Reading
April 2009, Issue Two
Twitter has been growing hugely in popularity this year. Even since the last issue of this newsletter thousands have joined up – and not just savvy nerds from San Fran.
This weekend was one of those rare times when I do work outside of normal week day hours. My client at the Furniture Outlet in Kincardine was eager to get the new site up as soon as possible, and I was all too happy to accommodate the weird hours that come with retail. Continue Reading
This week I made a trip to North Bay to meet up with a couple of my bigger clients and to help PixelFlex founder Tim Lum with his Canadore College presentation “Get the Edge” for the Graphic Design program’s Professional Practices class (a video or series of videos of this presentation will be linked here when he gets it online). Continue Reading
Initially this little package was to be a Christmas hello, but we took our sweet time and now it’s March. And so, please allow me to be the first to wish you a very happy Pi Day on March 14 (at 1:59 to be exact) http://bit.ly/156Cxh
Please enjoy the herbal teas. They’re completely caffeine free and delicious. Allow a teaspoon’s worth to steep for 7 minutes. Also enclosed is a photo of the happy McBlain family. Be sure to send us a photo for our fridge too.
In site news debutcreative.com is moderately updated! Full launch set for May 1st. As always I am making monthly mixtapes at arleym.com/mixtapes
May your decimal places never end!
π Arley + Kristi
Several weeks ago I was asked to contribute to a follow-up post brainstorming Twitter improvements. This after making a comment about Time shifting Prime-Time tweets on the great Web Designer / Developer resource site Six Revisions. Continue Reading
The internet is 15 years old this year. It’s come a long way from my grade 8 days. I can still remember spending hours in a cramped lab of two computers painstakingly typing out long URLs. We visited the first websites in the world on a 14.4 bps dial-up modem to look at magic eye images. Continue Reading