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Monthly Archives: June 2009

Using SlideShow Pro and ExpressionEngine

Sydney1_tn.jpg
 

We recently completed this photography web site (http://www.impressionsbysydney.com). Sydney (our client) had a site that was built completely in Flash. She was unable to update the site without contacting a web guy. This was frustrating and expensive for her and caused her to not update the images on her site often.

She requested a simple clean look and the ability to update everything on the site dynamically. She also didn’t have a giant budget.

We decided on SlideShow Pro and SlideShow Pro Director to provide a simple upload process, an easy way to edit slideshows, image orders, thumbnails and the overall presentation of her photography.

Secondly we chose ExpressionEngine as a way to edit the site copy, quotes, navigation, and a few homepage links.

Scott and I were pleasantly surprised at the timeline we were able to hold as we developed the site and how easily these two tools integrated to fulfill our particular needs. Our biggest difficulties came trying to install ExpressionEngine on Godaddy where our client hosts her site. We worked through the issues but lost some sleep reading through forum posts from others installing on Godaddy.

Overall, we’re happy with the project and and the experience we gained.

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Lost your iPhone?
I found this blog reviewing the “Find my iPhone” feature on Apple’s MobileMe Service. Read More >

DAZ Studio 3 Box

DAZ 3D (www.daz3d.com) has announced a new free version of its
3D art and animation package, DAZ Studio 3, as well as the debut of
its enhanced, professional-quality toolset, DAZ Studio 3 Advanced,
whic is targeted to 3D animators, designers and illustrators.

DAZ Studio 3 offers improved OpenGL preview display with new camera
and light pointer tools, depth of field and support for version 8.5
of Pixar’s RenderMan compliant 3Delight render engine. This tool is
designed to allow hobbyists to create digital art and animation using
their choice of virtual people, animals, props, vehicles, accessories
and environments. Users can select their subject and/or setting,
arrange accessories, setup lighting and immediately begin to create
artwork.

DAZ Studio 3 Advanced adds a set of new professional-level tools
including advanced render effects and shaders, COLLADA import/export,
animation keyframe editing, figure mixing and support for 64-bit
systems.

Now available forMac OS X 10.4 or higher, DAZ Studio 3 is free to
registered DAZ 3D members. DAZ Studio 3 Advanced, priced at
US$149.95, comes pre-configured with DAZ 3D content that is ready to
be loaded and rendered at the push of a button.

For even further advancement of 3D content creation, DAZ 3D
additionally offers the DAZ Studio Advanced Bundle, which couples DAZ
Studio 3 Advanced with a suite of DAZ 3D advanced content creation
plug-ins, including: Figure Setup Tools, 3D Bridge for Photoshop, FBX
Exporter and Multi-Layered Image Editor. The DAZ Studio Advanced
Bundle costs $499.95.

So unlike most people (apparently), I liked the placement of the tabs at the top of the Safari browser. I enjoy having 28 extra pixels of screen height and felt Apple got this one right. I understand if some people don’t want to change, but to me, this is exactly the type of user experience and refinement that defines why Apple has been able to “Think Different” for decades.

The thing that needs a UI change is bringing back the progress bar. How can anyone tell how much of a page has loaded with a spinning wheel? This seems like a vital portion of web browsing. Adding the word “Loading” on a blue background still doesn’t tell me how much longer I have to wait until my page has completely loaded.

I wasn’t excited about the “Top Sites” feature, but surprisingly, I use it daily. It’s quicker than browsing through bookmarks.

The other features are trivial in my browsing experience.

I’ve yet to upgrade from Safari Beta because I don’t want to lose my top tabs. Maybe if enough of us blog, Apple will at least give us a preference setting to choose top tabs.