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How to Prepare for a Spike in Internet Traffic

Posted By: on December 30, 2012
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Getting more website visitors is great, but when too many arrive at once, your site may crash and your online reputation could plummet. Fortunately, it’s possible to prepare your site for this occurrence ahead of time. Here’s how you can get your site ready to be mobbed by the masses without a hitch.

Think Lightweight

First, think about making a lightweight version of your site that you can move traffic to in case of spikes. For example, you can create a mobile version of the site and make that version available to regular users in case traffic surges. Alternately, you could just create a lightweight version of your site’s homepage. After all, this page will receive the most traffic since most visitors will start there before navigating to other parts of the site. As an extension of this, you could also create lightweight versions of certain pages that suddenly see a huge spike in traffic.

You can make pages more lightweight in a few ways. Instead of dynamic pages, you can use static HTML where possible. This will greatly reduce server strain. You can also set your server to create a static cache of dynamically generated pages. When you can, try to reduce high-powered interactive and video elements and use simple text as a smaller alternative.

Use Third-Party Hosting Services

While your current host may not be able to handle a huge traffic spike, another service might be a great place to host a copy in case this happens. Free sites, such as basic blog platforms, are possible in this case, but a dependable hosting service, such as Singlehop, is an excellent choice that will be able to handle a full-featured copy of your website. In case the spike is confined to simple forms or documents, you can use a content delivery network.

Avoid Heavy File Formats

If your site offers information for download, minimize the size of those files by choosing specific file formats. One example of this would be using simple text files instead of larger PDFs. While the size and features might be reduced, users will enjoy the same information with reduced download time, and your server will have an easier time handling a large volume of these requests. If you don’t have the option of using text files, you can minimize PDF download size by removing the images from files before creating PDFs out of them.

Create Tables Using XML and CSV Formats

If your site features numerical data, consider offering it in XML or CSV. Lightweight and easy for developers to use, these formats are ideal when you need to keep your data available to the masses when it counts.

With the above tips, you’ll have less trouble keeping your site available to visitors as needed. In the long run, this will preserve your site’s reputation as a dependable source of content.

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Photographs That Inspired Four of Norman Rockwell’s Iconic Paintings

Posted By: on December 27, 2012
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Young Looking Norman Rockwell

The 20th-century American painter and illustrator, Norman Rockwell, is well-known for his artwork, which often reflected the American culture, as well as, the cover illustrations he did over four decades for the Saturday Evening Post magazine. Although many of us recognize Rockwell’s paintings, there is a lot we don’t know about the man himself or what inspired his popular artwork.

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TopCultured Legends

What a Catnip Hangover Looks Like

Posted By: on November 30, 2012

Cats look forward to playing with string, a toy mouse, or bird, but what makes them really excited is the smell of catnip. This favorite cat treat makes our furry friends bounce off walls, furniture, Read On »

6 Situations When Renters’ Insurance Is a Life Saver

Posted By: on June 20, 2013

In recent months, many folks in Oklahoma, New York, New Jersey, and Colorado woke up to the fact that Mother Nature’s fury can take what’s most precious to them. Though nothing will replace the loss Read On »

4 Ways to Get Your Business Back on Track

Posted By: on July 9, 2013

Project managers and company leadership teams understand how difficult it can be to reorganize business processes, especially if operations have taken a turn for the worse. It is possible to stop your company from sliding Read On »

5 Additional Expenses to Consider When Starting a Business

Posted By: on December 26, 2012
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Starting a business can be an extremely rewarding endeavor if it’s done correctly. At the same time, many entrepreneurs fail to realize just how expensive it can be to get started. While they may be aware of the major expenses, they fail to take into consideration all of the expenses that may come up. Here are five additional expenses that entrepreneurs should consider when starting a business.

1. Technology Costs

In today’s technological age, there are a number of costs that many businesses incur along the way. For example, many companies have to pay a monthly fee for access to cloud servers for their database. Instead of purchasing expensive servers, companies can simply rent space in a cloud center. This saves money overall, but it does cost the business money every single month.

2. Advertising Costs

Another expense that most businesses will incur is advertising. In today’s market, many businesses could stand to benefit from online advertising more than from using traditional methods of marketing. With online advertising, businesses can target the customers they’re looking for instead of just sending out a mass marketing message to everyone at the same time.

3. Legal Fees

In the past, businesses could get by without worrying too much about legalities and legal fees. Today’s society is much more litigious than in the past. This means that entrepreneurs need to seek out the expertise of a lawyer and an accountant when they get started. This ensures that they will not be taken advantage of in any way or put themselves at risk. Covering all of the bases is critical to success in any business endeavor.  For more information about legal fees check out General Liability Insurance.

4. Design

In many cases, businesses will also have to spend some money for a professional graphic designer. To separate a business from competition, a business has to engage in some kind of branding. This typically requires a professionally designed logo and some other branding materials. By hiring a professional graphic designer, the entrepreneur can then focus on other things instead of trying to create a sub-par logo for his business.

5. Communications

Businesses also need a way to communicate effectively with employees and other companies. This may require a company to purchase multiple cell phones and pay for their plans. This can be a sizable expense for any company, especially if it is not factored in on the front end. Besides cell phones, a company may also have to pay for data plans for tablets or laptops so that their sales force can access the Internet without being tied down to WiFi networks.

Overall, these expenses can really add up if an entrepreneur is not expecting them. With a little bit of foresight and careful planning, a business owner should be able to absorb them.

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Greg

Hack Your Wifi With A Beer Can!

Posted By: on December 20, 2012
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Who ever said drinking beer had no benefits? Especially when you find yourself browsing the internet for the latest episodes of <insert your favorite show here>?

Thanks to the good-looking folks at HackCollege, you can use a beer can to boost your wifi!

Check out the video:

 

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Greg

Gillette and Clay Matthews Want YOUR Debates

Posted By: on December 20, 2012
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Never let it be said that you didn’t have the chance to be heard. Gillette is a firm believer in the idea that “The best will always be debated; the best shave will not.” The makers of the new and awesome Fusion razor want to settle something important: namely, NFL debates. They’ve enlisted Clay Matthews to help them judge the master debater for a weekly NFL burning question. The best debate will win tickets to Super Bowl XLVII in New Orleans as well as bragging rights (because we all know how important those are)!

Hit up their Facebook page and join the debate.

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The Dreaded Video Game Glitch

Posted By: on December 19, 2012
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Video_Game_Glitch_Funny

No matter if you are a hardcore gamer or a person who only plays video games every once and a while, you have experienced a video game glitch at some point. There is nothing worst then being in the middle of a game, winning, and having to reset the system due to the much dreaded glitch.

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Five Famous Actors Reveal Their First Auditions

Posted By: on December 16, 2012
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Everyone has to start somewhere. In the world of professional acting, the casting is that start. A casting call is often put out by a production, announcing castings for roles in a movie, show, or play. The casting is a try-out of sorts, allowing the would-be actor to prove their skills to the producers in hopes of scoring a role.

It can be quite amusing to look back on well-known actors and actresses, and see them in a very real role: trying to impress, unknown, younger, vocationally-vulnerable and not quite so sure of themselves. We take a pleasantly entertaining look back on five famous actors’ first auditions.

Hugh Laurie http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=hJUwTAGYOSg

The television show House was wildly successful, making names for all those involved. Dr. House, the show’s front-man role is played by Hugh Laurie. Most know the name. A look back at his casting audition for the show reveals a younger, inexperienced, yet powerful Laurie talking back with the trademark facial gestures we all came to love.

Carrie Fisher http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=kCXrGuLix7M

Carrie Fisher went on to do well for herself. Watch the actress’ audition and notice her unpolished, but nonetheless promising abilities. At the age of 19, Fisher was Princess Leia in the classic film, Star Wars.

Brad Pitt

Today’s A-List actor wasn’t always on top of the game. The television show Dallas was his first role, but was only scored after many failed auditions and time in acting school. Although video of these early auditions is so-far unattainable, Pitt discusses the frustrations he felt at this fledgling point in his coming-of-age acting career. Read about the interview’s contents at http://www.dailyactor.com/2011/11/brad-pitt-talks-about-quitting-acting-his-early-frustrations-and-doing-it-all-for-his-kids/ .

Kurt Russell http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=nix_PID3oiA

Like Carrie Fisher, Kurt Russell also did some auditioning for Star Wars. Russell’s however, is a bit more laughable as he attempts to portray a good guy, Hans Solo. “I’m gonna take you on an impossible search across the galaxy.” The then unknown Russell did not land this role.

Josh Holloway http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=JQAuzBEple8

Probably at the top of the list of unknowns’ auditions that are not later sources of embarrassment would be Josh Holloway. He is nearly a “natural” as he portrays a trouble-making, rabble-rouser, bad boy for the coming television hit, Lost. Watch Holloway reveal a fantastic audition.

Young and old, actors and actresses get their biggest breaks from these castings. If you or someone you know is interested in acting, contact a leader such as NYCastings.com, and pursue an extremely lucrative career today. As we have seen, even those not-so-wonderful castings can lead eventually lead to big roles and the references to those roles. Never give up; These famous faces didn’t.

Read On

What Digital Age Customers Want

Posted By: on December 16, 2012
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The advent of technology has given customers a plethora of options that a previous generation of consumers couldn’t even have dreamed of. It’s becoming trickier to predict what the latest trends and phases will be, and then provide the goods and services that customers want, all the while staying ahead of the competition. Here are some things that 2013 has in store for digital customers.

The Real Deal

Revolutionary as the digital age is, customers still want the real thing. Even as the Kindle, iPad and Nook broke sales records, booksellers and publishers realized that the allure of turning the pages of a book will never fade away. People love the convenience of having their world delivered to their fingertips (like what ReZoop does), but it will never take away the feel of picking up a book, or going to see a movie in a cinema instead of on a tablet screen.

Less is More

For a long time, business exploited the novelty of the Internet by throwing an endless stream of ads at users. The dynamic has shifted, the way MySpace’s cluttered interface spelled its doom, and Facebook’s clean(er) look led it to dominate social media. In 2013, digital age customers will not only appreciate, but use services that do not assault their senses with advertising. Instead of being carpet bombed, users want more precise and personalized choices.

Social Media Isn’t Going Away

There was probably a time when Facebook, Twitter and their social media counterparts were considered fads that wouldn’t last long. In 2013, no business is going to go very far if they don’t seek to exploit the amount of time people spend on those two networks. When everything in life boils down to a Facebook ‘Like’ or a tweet that can be seen by millions of (potential) customers in literally seconds, digital age customers want products, services and offers that speak right to their fingertips.

Human Interaction

Apps, ‘Likes’, Tweets and YouTube videos are great, but nothing beats the reassuring sound of a human voice on the other end of a phone call, answering your questions or getting you the help you need for a problem. With so much technology around, something is bound to go wrong, and customers of 2013 will want to know that the solutions are still just a phone call away.

Better Service

Similarly, with how eager businesses are to market to customers, people in the digital age expect better treatment. Wanting exemplary customer service is nothing new, but if organizations are willing to spend time and effort trying to sell a product, the expectation is that those organizations will also bend over backwards to ensure that customer complaints are addressed speedily, restitution (where applicable) is offered, and services remain uninterrupted. These days, the competition is just a click away.

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Incorporating Mobile Visual Searches into Your Product Plans

Posted By: on December 15, 2012
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Every business, no matter how large or small, is thinking about how to incorporate technology with their marketing plans. With technology ever changing, it’s hard to keep up with the newest advances. A big player in the future of technology is augmented reality. Augmented Reality offers immediate, interactive data– such as video, text, and search engines– that responds to the surrounding environment. Take any landscape, any building, any cityscape and augment it. Now computer graphics overlay the environment, adding information and enhancing the experience.

Augmented reality already has a lot of applications, and many more that are being developed or haven’t even been dreamed up yet. Because augmented reality devices are fast responding, features like instant translation and adding visuals to audio recordings are simple beginnings. Apply this to the professional world and professions from architects to surgeons are becoming more efficient with the help of augmented reality.

Visual Searches With Augmented Reality

One of the many potential uses of augmented reality is conducting visual searches. We’ve already seen visual searches with Google’s app Google Goggles released in 2009 for Android phones, and has since been added to iPhones. The app uses photo recognition to match a photo taken with the phone’s camera to an image in the database. Augmented reality and visual searches can expand from there, adding additional information about the subject of the photo on the phone’s screen.

Augmenting A Product Plan

So how can visual searches benefit a business? Although augmented reality is still being developed, the companies that integrate it into their marketing plans early will benefit most from its potential. Beginning with smartphones and tablets, like Google Goggles, and looking toward the future with augmented reality glasses, contact lenses, or even windshields becoming mainstream. The possibilities for advertisement and getting a message to a large audience are endless when information can be incorporated digitally on top of the world around us.

Knowing where to start with integrating new technology with a business can be a challenge at first. Luckily there are scientists, marketers, and software developers available at http://gravityjack.com who are leading businesses into the future by helping them master augmented reality technology. It’s an exciting time with such new technology since there’s no knowing where it will go. The ideas and creativity that is applied to augmented reality and visual searches now in these early stages will shape how the devices grow, what features are added, and what it will be able to accomplish.

Augmented reality devices can change commerce and advertising, entertainment, education, and business in more ways than any one person could imagine. The majority of people have a smartphone in their pocket at all times, and with apps like Google Goggles it gives them a better view of the world around them. As technology grows it will need creative minds to help lead it along to its full potential and help its users grow along with it.

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7 Mistakes to Avoid When You’re Moving

Posted By: on December 14, 2012
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Moving is an exciting time in your life because you’ll soon be in that perfect house. In order to ensure that the process runs smoothly though, avoid these common moving mistakes.

Not Labeling Items
When you get into the new house, you’ll want to know where everything is. Even though labeling requires a little bit more work now, it will be so worth it when you aren’t panicking later on.

Carelessly Packing Fragile Items
Once again, you might try to simplify things now by just throwing items into boxes. Sure, you might tell yourself that you’ll take extra caution with that box on moving day. However, when moving day comes, you might not even be the one to pick it up and put it in the car.

Underestimating Time
Do not assume that you’ll be all packed up and moved into the new place in a matter of a couple of hours. Dedicate a whole day to the actual moving process, and remember to add more time if you’re moving to another state or across the country. You’ll likely need to take the day before off to pack any last minute items, and taking the day after off is wise as you’ll be extremely tired.

Not Watching Kids and Pets
You must be so careful when children and pets are in the home! For little ones, consider hiring a babysitter or dropping them off at a relatives house for the day. When it comes to pets, it might be better to let them stay at a pet hotel for the evening. It would be horrific if one of them wandered out of the house during the move.

Unpacking Everything at Once
Trying to unpack all of your items the same day that you move is practically impossible. Instead of giving yourself all of this extra stress, just unpack what you need and leave the rest for the next few days.

Not Preparing for the First Night
No matter how well you pack, you’re still going to need clothing and food for the first night. Be sure to fill a suitcase with clothes for each member of the house, necessary feeding and walking supplies for the pets and some canned goods and pots with which to eat on that first night.

Not Hiring a Reputable Company
Remember, you are picking a company to handle some of your most prized possessions, so you want to ensure that the workers are trustworthy. Check out www.trailervalet.com to connect with some of the professionals.

You might think that you would never make some of these mistakes. Hopefully, you won’t, but the stress of the day could make you change. Be sure to keep all of these helpful hints in mind.

Read On
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