Archive for June, 2006

THE REAL DEAL

June 27th, 2006

Last night I was looking at sunglasses because my good friend Kevin was going to hook me up with some shades (which he did). So as the picture shows no virtual dressing room needed as you can see. BUT if you would like to try on my new shades click on the picture and try out my quickly done flash dressing room. In order to view it you’ll need a computer with a webcam, flash 8, and a little patience to position yourself. Here’s a hint: when flash ask you if it can access your webcam you need to click accept and don’t worry these pictures are just local on your machine (meaning no one but yourself will see them).

Big thanks to my good friend Kevin. I love the smithy’s.

A DOWN SIDE TO INTERNET SHOPPING

June 26th, 2006

As I was looking online at sunglasses earlier today I thought I’d apply my skills at photoshopping to try a pair on. Needless to say it’s not quite like going down to the local skate shop and having them open up the glass case.

As a flash aficionado I started to think that a company like smith, spy, or oakley could benefit from an online flash app that took a picture of the viewer using your built in iSight in-order to let you try on a pair of optics? Maybe I should give my old Mission buddy Janard (Oakley founder’s son) a call and tell him my great idea. It would make the trip down to “Skate Punkers” unnecessary; which would be fine by me.

234 LBS

June 25th, 2006


I’m fat. Not overweight or husky. Fat. I now weigh a chunky two hundred thirty-four pounds. Now granted I can walk down the street or go to the movies and spot several people who are more obese than myself, but at my current weight and size I’m on the verge of forming my own sumo team or at least risking serious heart damage and an early death. The last time I was my slimmer self was a couple years ago. Poor diet, lack of self-control, and quitting all exercise activities have brought me to my current stretch-marked state. The worse is I have new friends through school and church that have no clue that I was once a slimmer version.

For at least a year now (probably more) I’ve been telling myself that I would start loosing weight Monday morning; as I make this resolve I would usually be tucking into another “healthy” Sunday night treat. Well tonight I’m going to say it again. Tomorrow morning is the morning, and hopefully by posting my actual weight it will help me stay motivated longer than a night. I’m planning on posting progress and such here, so if you want to follow the fight stay tuned.

Marc version 3.0 (in development)

FOOLING GOOGLE: SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZATION

June 22nd, 2006

At work I’ve been working with a search engine optimization company—when they return my phone calls that is (it’s been three weeks). What’s interesting is search engine optimizers don’t really care what your website looks like. In-fact they want to change all my work with lots of links and repeated key phrases (how many times can you say alarm without boring a visitor?). Their theory is the more text and links you have on the front and subsequent pages the higher in the search engine ranks you get. The problem with that is it turns any website into an ugly monster.

Here is a link to one of their clients. She sells beads and if you type beads into google it’s the first site to come up. Take a look at the site and you’ll quickly see why I’m terrified at what they’re going to do to the two sites I maintain at my day job. They also told me that anything created in flash needs to go (I don’t think so).

As a web designer and particularly a flash designer this brings up some serious concerns. A website completely executed in flash is pretty much invisible to the google search bots. Sometimes they can pull out links to other sites or web pages, but text fields and most content in a flash site is overlooked.

Since I’m half way through the re-design of the AvantGuard website and planning on creating it all in flash I needed to figure out a way to improve search rankings and not sacrifice design or flash. So I went to work on marcfolio.

MARFOLIO SEARCH ENHANCED

The first thing I changed was the title of the index.html file. Search engines actually use the title of a web page as the number one search criteria. Ok, the second part is where I fool google. I figured google’s bots can’t possible have javascript enabled and I just so happen to use a lot of javscript. The scripts on marcfolio have a couple purposes; to check for the flash player plugin, and embed the flash movie as a full browser movie. I took all the text and content contained inside my swf file and placed it on the html page, but because the flash movie fills up the browser window it pushes all the additional content out of view. To give the bots the idea that this is a traditional html site I then copied the index.html file and renamed it contact.html, area.html, portfolio.html… changing the html text to reflect the respective areas. NOTE: each html file has the same flash file embedded. Even if your search pulls up clients.html it will launch the same flash movie.

The results have been AMAZING. I went from being able to only type in marcfolio to pull up my site in a google search to number one if you search for interactive boutique studio. AND number 3 if you search from salt lake interactive design studio. There are several other searches that pull up marcfolio on the first page or at least within the first three pages of results.
I’m not too worried about the search optimizers anymore. They can do their worse and I’ll just push it out of view.

FATHER’S DAY SCORE

June 21st, 2006


My wife is wonderful. For father’s day (last sunday) she took my iPod in secret and created this very stylish iPod case. It protects and looks like $55. I’m definitely not the best husband and not a father yet but she still showed me her love. I am extremely grateful and owe her big time—for mother’s day I totally dropped the ball. I asked if she wanted anything and she politely said, “no.” I should have known that meant get me the $500 cartier bracelet, or a kitchen aide mixer in rust orange. Sorry Suz. I do love the iPod slip. Next year.