About a month ago I moved my blog from Posterous to a self-hosted WordPress installation. I didn’t bother setting up the Akismet comment spam filter at the time and started noticing quite a few spam comments coming through. From having previously worked with WordPress, I knew that I needed an API key.
These days, it’s a bit easier to get, as you can simply sign up for a WordPress.com account which gives you a whole host of benefits when using a standard WordPress.org installation on your own server.
I clicked on Plugins and selected “Settings” under Akismet. I entered my API key and started frantically looking for a “Save” or a “Save Settings” button. I found none, and thought that maybe it would auto-save once I navigated away from the page – a trend in desktop software, especially since Mac OS X’s System Preferences started doing this.
I noticed a button saying “Update Options >>” (see below). I clicked on it to see what the “Update Options” might be, expecting a popup where I could choose whether Akismet would update automatically or manually. The little double arrow indicated that further options would appear.
Ha! I was wrong. A message appeared saying; “Options saved.”
So why doesn’t the button say “Save options”?
Steve Krugman writes in “Don’t Make Me Think” about naming buttons. In particular, regarding a Search box/button:
“It’s a simple formula: a box, a button, and the word ‘Search’. Don’t make it hard for them – stick to the formula.”
My sister, Elodie, is getting married next weekend.
When I was young, I loved chess. As a 7 year old boy though, I didn’t have many people to play it with, though. Elodie, was 4 years old at the time. I taught her how to play chess and she picked it up quickly, but she lost interest in it just as rapidly as she lost interest in most of her boyfriends in later years. (until Justin came along).
So I made up a story. This being the early ’80s and South Africans still being taught to hate & fear the Russians, I told her that if she couldn’t play a good chess game, men from Russia will visit and chop off her head. She believed me and within a few short weeks Elodie was South Africa’s best 4 year old chess player…
I was reminded of this today as I read about Phiona Mutesi. Phiona grew up in the Katwe slum of Kampala, Uganda. Her family was starving.
She heard about a sports centre that was giving free chess lessons. And free porridge. She went there with her brother, but was chased away because she was too dirty.
“My brother was very annoyed and took me back to my mom. My mum told me to never go back to chess, but I went back because I wanted that cup of porridge”
She walked six kilometres ever day to play the game. Two years later, she won the Uganda women’s junior championship.
A week or so ago my iOS Safari browser started using Yahoo!
I’m not sure why – I suspect an iOS update – but I thought I’d give Yahoo! A shot after many years of not using it.
It’s hasn’t been great overall, but today I remembered why Google is Great. I quickly needed information about the flight Althea is on. Here’s what Yahoo! showed me when I entered “qf571″:
And here’s Google’s:
On the Shoestring blog:
The newest startup coworking space to launch in Sydney this week will be Tank Stream Labs. Located right in the heart of the CBD, TS Labs will house some of Australia’s coolest startups with a lot of buzz around them at the moment. Airtasker, Joe Button, Room.us and Compare Courses are just some of the new ventures occupants of the labs will be rubbing shoulders with.
First night in our new apartment and Sydney said “Howzit!” in style!
Sent from the asteroid known as B-612
“Innovation is not born out out of a committee; innovation is a fight. It’s messy, people die, but when the battle is over, something unimaginably significant has been achieved.”
We decided to go with Responsive for Skyrove’s WiFi Hotspot Portal pages for the following reasons:
1. Many, many different screen sizes to cater for
2. We had a very small amount of layout changes and resizing to do (images didn’t even need to resized)
3. It was definitely going to be more hassle to manage a separate site
4. We were inspired by the Responsive
design of Trello.com
(check it out by signing up and simply resizing your browser window)
Importantly, at the same time, we took the approach of designing for “Mobile First”. Design would be done for the best mobile experience and only THEN would the design be adopted for the desktop! (Obviously, as it was responsive, we would already have a working desktop version, albeit not optimized for the larger res)
Keep in mind, that all our users did pretty much the same thing: Login if registered already, Register if not, purchase credits, or login with a roaming partner account (Skype, Boingo, etc). We only had about 3 or 4 pages to worry about.
Google has a graphic that summarizes the Pros and Cons nicely:
It’s not every day I rave about a Software product or web app. Well, okay, I’ve raved before about Balsamiq Mockups, Evernote, Highrise and a few others…
But it’s only the really good ones that get my attention. And Sprint.ly is a good one.
Basically, Sprint.ly is web app for software developers, product managers and other stakeholders to prioritize and manage the development process for features, tasks, defects (bugs) and tests.
Nothing new there… you can also look at JIRA, PivotalTracker, TargetProcess and many others. The difference is that Sprint.ly does it (a) right and (b) beautifully.
It integrates well with email (JIRA doesn’t), provides a Kanban style dashboard with easy click & drag (PivotalTracker doesn’t), and automatically updates stories/items whenever developers commit to Github.
Its ease-of-use is miles ahead of the pack, which is a crucial factor when you need to convince other team members to change systems.
If you have a distributed software team and you’re struggling to keep up to date with what everyone is working on, Sprint.ly may just be your new best friend.