Van Gogh inspired solar energy trail

Sustainable energy is slowly becoming a wide spread phenomenon across the world. We can power our houses, cars, phones using different methods of solar powered panels and plants with some kind of photosynthesis that allow us to absorb the energy from the sun needed for power. Studio Roosegaarde has taken this to the next level and has installed this 3,000-foot bike path to commemorate the 125th anniversary of Vincent Van Gogh’s death.

The aim is to bridge art and tech inspiring people to create sustainable energy neutral landscapes. They took thousands of twinkling stones to light up the path covered individually with a photosynthesized coating (combined with auxiliary solar panels for darker days) that when in the sun keeps it glowing for about 8hrs.

This project has also inspired other works in the makings such as the blue bike path in Poland made from a similar material called phosphor that can also be recharged by the sun in hopes that this trend will catch on in other parts of the world.

So what do these eye catching bike trails have to do with technology, well in a way sustainable energy could be one of the main sources of power and showcasing something that can potentially change how we use sustainable energy can be part of the bigger picture towards where it could possibly take us.

sources

Mashable

TechCrunch

Gaining Access to Lynda.com

Some great resources for free learning tools from lynda that can be accessed through your local library!

Blossoming Code

lynda

Lynda.com is a fantastic website to help you with anything tech as well a multitude of other subjects. For those who don’t want or have the money to spend on a subscription for Lynda.com, then I have a solution, well rather, your public library does.

Finding Your Local Library

The first step to getting set up with Lynda through a library, is by finding a library nearby you. An easy way to get a comprehensive list of library options is by going to this link. The link will take you to a website called Public Libraries, you can go by state and then find the library that is closest to where you live. You may need to use Google Maps to figure out which is the shortest distance to you.

Getting a Library Card

You can get a library card either at the library or on their website. With…

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UI UX and Trending Designs

For anyone whose looking to be a future Designer/Developer it’s good to be on top of what’s trending to be a trendsetter in a world where schemes looks and feels of a sites functionality constantly change, Keeping in mind that simplicity is Key.

 

 

Learning what UI vs what UX means and how functionality works further down is important. UI stands for User interface and the way a website looks and feels, UX makes sure to give the user the full best friendly experience on any version of their websites and focuses on a websites mobility in general.

UX and UI the difference.

UX Design refers to the term User Experience Design, while UI Design stands for User Interface Design. Both elements are crucial to a product and work closely together. But despite their professional relationship, the roles themselves are quite different, referring to very different parts of the process and the design discipline. Where UX Design is a more analytical and technical field, UI Design is closer to what we refer to as graphic design, though the responsibilities are somewhat more complex. An example of this would be to imagine a product as the human body, the bones represent the code which give it structure. The organs represent the UX design: measuring and optimizing against input for supporting life functions. And UI design represents the cosmetics of the body–its presentation, its senses and reactions.

 

now that we know the different between user experience and here user interface let’s get down to designs, Here are 6 designs that have been and are currently appealing to clients in all any business. (Original Source and article from awwwards).

1. The Proliferation of UI Patterns

Learning UI is going to be an essential for web designers,

one of the side effects of responsive design has made a lot of sites look similar. However, responsive design isn’t solely to blame. The rise of WordPress sites and the booming theme market also have a hand in it.

And some folks, such as Matthew Monbre, have copped to being guilty of following everyone else’s look with his company’s site.

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Photo credit: Cypress North

But having a similar look isn’t necessarily a bad thing. That’s because we’ve changed the way we consume the web, which has resulted in a lot of common UI design patterns. Design patterns have matured and as such, there’s little in the way of innovation when it comes to UI patterns.

In other words, a checkout will still be a checkout and should function as such. Same with a login model. There’s no real reason to reinvent the wheel. UI patterns must guide users through a smooth experience.

Here’s a few patterns you should be familiar with:

    1. The hamburger menu: While some criticize this pattern’s use, there’s no doubt that it’s widespread use makes the function easily recognizable for users.

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Photo credit:Silenza via awwwards

    1. Account registration: You’ll find this pattern whenever you try to register for a site. There might be a form to fill out or a button that’ll allow you to use a social account to sign up. Multi-step form wizards are also effective since they “chunk out” the required fields, reducing friction and encouraging users to flow through the process.

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Photo credit Typeform

    1. Long scroll: Placing all your important elements above the fold is now a well-known myth. Furthermore, almost everyone is accustomed to long scrolls thanks to mobile devices. The technique works especially well for sites that want to lure users through storytelling, and you can still mimic a multi-page site by breaking the scroll into clear sections.

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Photo credit: Vimeo

    1. Card Layouts: Pioneered by Pinterest, cards are everywhere on the web because they present information in bite-sized chunks perfect for scanning. Each card represents one unified concept. Since they act as “content containers”, their rectangular shape makes them easier to re-arrange for different device breakpoints.

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Photo credit: TheNextWeb

  1. Hero images: Since vision is the strongest human sense, HD hero images are one of the fastest ways to grab a user’s attention. Thanks to advances in bandwidth and data compression, users won’t suffer from slow load times either. One common layout you’ll find is a hero image above the scroll, followed by either zig-zagging sections or a cards-based arrangement.

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Photo credit: Maaemo

For more UI patterns and techniques, check out the free e-book Web Design Trends 2015 and 2016.

2. Rich Animations

Animations are being used more and more to enhance a site’s storytelling, making the experience more interactive and entertaining.

However, you can’t just stick animation in anywhere. Consider carefully whether it adds to your site’s story elements and personality. Animations can be thought of in terms of two groups:

  1. Large scale animations. These are used as a primary interaction tool have more impact on users and include effects like parallax scrolling and pop-up notifications.
  2. Small scale animations. These include spinners, hover tools and loading bars, and don’t require any user input.

We’ll describe 7 of the most popular animation techniques:

    • Loading animations

These are used to entertain users and delight users during an otherwise tedious experience. Loading animations tend to be popular for flat design, minimalism, portfolios and one-page sites.

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Slack via Lauren Tan

Keep them simple and avoid adding sound. They should however match your site’s personality and color palette.

    • Navigation and menus (nonscrolling)

Hidden navigation menus have become increasingly popular, especially as they can be used to save screen space. As you can see in the example below created in the collaborative prototyping tool UXPin, these use animations to reveal a menu when clicking on a specific button and prevent a jarring transition (like a navigation drawer hidden behind a hamburger icon).

    • Hover animations

Hover effects give a more intuitive feel to a site as users mouse over content. Users unsure about a feature’s function tend to hover over them automatically for instant visual feedback.

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Photo credit: Humaan

    • Galleries and slideshows

Galleries and slideshows are an effective way to showcase multiple images without overburdening the users. These are great for photography sites, product showcases, and portfolios.

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Photo credit: Born Fighter via awwwards

    • Motion animation

Our eyes are naturally drawn to motion, which makes it the perfect tool for drawing a user’s attention. Motion can also help with visual hierarchy. This can help to add interest and intrigue to forms, CTAs and menu items.

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Photo credit: Bugaboo via awwwards

    • Scrolling

Smooth scrolling relies on animation and gives further control to the user, who can determine the pace of how the animation unfolds.

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Photo credit: Squarespace

    • Background animations/ videos

A simple animated background can add visibility to a site, but should be used in moderation or it can be very distracting to the user. The key is to work on individual sections or create a gentle movement of an entire image.

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Photo credit: Dunckelfeld

3. Microinteractions

Microinteractions happen all around us, from turning off the alarm on your mobile phone to liking that cat picture on Facebook.

Each one done without a second thought. It’s likely that you started your day with a micro-interaction. By turning off the alarm on your mobile phone, you engaged with a user interface in a single moment. And more and more of these are baked into the apps and devices we use.

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Photo credit: Slack

Micro-interactions tend to do, or help you do, several different things:

  1. Communicate a status or bit of feedback
  2. See the result of an action
  3. Help the user manipulate something

Micro-interactions are a vital part of any app.

As recommended in Web Design Trends 2015 and 2016, you’ll want to ensure that these interactions happen almost invisibly. Don’t go overboard and keep it simple. Consider each detail with care, and make each interaction feel human. That is make text conversational and not robotic.

Micro-interactions are an important part of almost every digital design project. You’ll be hard-pressed to design a website or mobile app that does not include some element, or moment, that a user needs to interact with.

Each of these interaction types lead users to a path of more human-centered design. This concept of making devices more human-like in their moments is a key to adoption and usability.

4. Material Design: A Richer Alternative to Flat Design

Last year, Google launched its new style language, Material Design. It uses shadow effects and the concepts of movement and depth in order to create designs that appear more realistic to the user.

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Photo Credit: Google Now

The goal of Material Design is to create clean, modernistic design that focus on UX. While Google’s design aesthetic has detractors, it’s been mostly praised as a game-changer.

With its minimalistic look, Material Design has a lot in common with another growing trend — flat design. Material Design, however, makes use of depth and shadow, which allows for more depth than pure flat design.

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Photo credit: Angular

Before now, we’ve seen the majority of Material Design projects limited to app design. Google however announced Material Design Lite in July, which is more suited to websites. Nevertheless, Material Design was intended to provide great UI and UX across devices. Lite uses vanilla CSS, HTML and JavaScript and is intended to make it simple to add the look and feel of Material Design to websites.

Material Design Lite doesn’t rely on any particular framework, so designers can use a wide variety of front-end tools to create their sites. It’s also lightweight when it comes to the code.

5. Responsive Design

Responsive web design has become incredibly popular in recent years thanks to the rise of mobile internet usage.

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Photo credit: UXPin

It’s safe to say responsive design isn’t going anywhere soon, as it represents a relatively simple and cheap way for businesses to build a fully-functional mobile-friendly site. But responsive web design does come with some issues if not carried out properly, the most important being performance.

To ensure that a responsive performs at the peak of its ability, according to Guy’s Pod, designers should:

  1. Avoid using JavaScript and CSS image loading using the display:none tag. This still downloads the image to the device and adds unnecessary weight to a page.
  2. Use responsive images which are defined using a percentage.
  3. Use conditional loading for JavaScript as many of the JavaScript components used on a desktop site will not be used on smaller devices. Pay particular attention to third-party scripts such as those used for social sharing as these often impact negatively and reduce performance.
  4. Use RESS – Responsive and Server Side
  5. Apply performance testing into the process in order to effectively measure and optimize each site.

Performance is important not only to UX, but also to Google in the wake of the Mobile Friendly update which released in April 2015. Responsive web design is also highly compatible with minimalism, thanks to the necessity to keep page weight down. It’s also great to work with cards and responsive design as they can easily restructure in order to fit any breakpoint or screen size (like rearranging rectangular containers of content).

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Photo credit: The Guardian

Responsive web design is becoming less of a trend and more of a best practice. And designers have come up with clever ways to get around any speed issues.

There’s no doubt that responsive design is highly useful and versatile, but it also should be lightning fast in order to deliver a great UX.

6. Flat Isn’t Going Away Anytime Soon

Flat design has been around for a while and is compatible with other trends such as minimalism, responsive web design and Material Design.

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Photo credit: Beoplay via awwwards

Going forward, it’s likely that we’ll see the following further trends in flat design come to the forefront.

  • Long shadows. These bring more depth to flat designs.
  • Vibrant color schemes. Popular UI frameworks and templates have prompted many to begin using more vibrant colors in their designs.
  • Simple typography. Simple typefaces help to ensure that text remains legible and readable in flat design.
  • Ghost buttons. These allow for functionality without distracting from the UX and are often represented as outlined, clickable links that change when the user hovers over them.
  • Minimalism. Looks to cut down on the number of elements in order to create a fresh, uncluttered UI.

Additional Advice on Web Design Trends

Don’t follow trends just because they’re the “hip” thing to do at the moment. Trends represent popular techniques for good reason, but make sure it’s best for your users. For example, an e-commerce site certainly wouldn’t do well as a single-page infinite scrolling site.

Trends are nothing more than additional tools in your designer toolbox. Always pick the right ones for the job.

Sources.

Trend article and info By Jerry Cao at uxpin.com

Article source content from AWWWARDS

UI vs UX source from CareerFoundry.

 

Bitmoji’s

The day has finally come where a developer with a team of other super talented developers have joined forces to create this magical, whimsical, extremely entertaining app that portrays personalities blending in both avatars and emojis with themes so well, let’s face it, this app is going to replace every single emoji alternative that dares to call themselves apps. introducing Bitmojis!

Have you ever wanted to take your avatar everywhere or be able to use anything other than the standard outdated emoji’s included with your phone to express yourself? well, now it’s possible! As much as this sounds like one of those infomercials, the fact that this app is so creative is beyond me.

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Just look at this! Not only can anyone customize their avatars but they can also make them into characters from movies and tv shows, from persons and characters to celebs and brands. there’s so much that went into making this app. Not only that, let’s say a friend wanted to get involved as well, both you and said friend can also take part in this if both have the app and other types of social media to share avatars. (for now it’s snapchat with some basic platforms but once this becomes popular it’ll branch out). So it gets better, check this out.

This is friends A B and I judging friend A’s drawing, poor friend A really tried but we just weren’t as impressed. Capture+_2016-09-01-08-49-35-1

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With Bitmoji’s it’s so easy to paint a picture just by using avatars to describe a scenario. let’s say friend A still had hope. (I got your back fam).Capture+_2016-08-31-18-46-34-2

So Friend B, whose also our mentor and guide, decides to give friend A another chance!

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Alas as much as she tried friend A didn’t make the cut.

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Friend B is not too happy with Friend A.

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We’ll miss you homie.

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The friendly interface and easy to use interaction among the variety of emoji’s and Avatars will have the vast majority of trendsetters who try it addicted. Here’s how it works.

Snapchat users are have the ability to connect to Bitmoji via the app and combine that following the instructions where the conversations take place. Snapchat-Bitmojis-update

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But if Snapchat isn’t the go to place for social interaction, they have it covered. As I have previously stated there’s also ways to add these avatars via facebook, instagram, whatsapp, kik, and lastly messages once the app is allowed to access the keyboard settings it’s all good to go. This app will revolutionize the way we communicate and come on, they look like chibis! Chibis have taken over the style of art we currently see today in cartoons, comics, movies, and now this.

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Check out the links provided below for more info on where to find this app and more info related to Bitmojis.

Google play

Appstore

Bitmoji website

 

Ways to Use your phone to do good (ios edition)

Your iPhone is a constant in your life, its tiny screen captivating you for more hours of the day than you’d probably care to admit.

But what if you could feel good about using your smartphone because you’re actually doing good? Suddenly, tinkering away on your Phone doesn’t seem so shameful.

SEE ALSO: 10 Empowering Apps for Social Good

With Apple’s annual September iPhone event upon us, there’s a lot to be excited about in the world of smartphones. But it doesn’t matter if you’re holding out for an iPhone 6S Plus or can’t let go of your iPhone 4 — you can start doing good with your phone right now.

Whether you want to strengthen your allyship, become a smarter consumer or get rid of your old phone in an ethical way, there are simple tech solutions that make it a little easier to help the world.

Check out these six easy ways to use your iPhone for good.

1. Become a better ally.

Your smartphone can be a great tool for aiding the communities you already advocate for in your everyday life.

Be My Eyes, for example, is an app that allows sighted people to connect with blind people via live video, helping them navigate situations in which sight is helpful — whether it’s a crowded neighborhood or reading a can’s label.

Refuge Restrooms is an app that allows volunteers to log gender-inclusive public bathrooms, helping transgender and gender non-conforming people find safe places to use the restroom.

If there’s a community you’re passionate about helping, chances are there’s an app for that.

2. Donate on the go.

Donating money is the most obvious way to do more good, and smartphones help you give back with ease.

Whether the dollars are coming directly from your bank account (as with charity app Instead) or through a game-like reward app (like FreeRice), giving a little money can help make a big difference.

Be sure to check out our list of apps that fit charity into your daily routine.

3. Do your part for the environment.

Donating money is valuable, but donating time can be just as impactful — especially with the help of some stellar science apps.

Educate yourself about your carbon footprint (and learn how to lower it) with Oroeco, or learn about invasive species in your area and how to report them with What’s Invasive.

4. Shop ethically.

Being an educated consumer is hard, but your phone can help. Apps like Buycott and GoodGuide help you discover the social impact of the products in your cart, and help you make more informed decisions about what you purchase.

Check out these additional tools to check if your clothing, specifically, is ethically made.

5. Know how to help others in an emergency.

Sometimes doing good is a hands-on task, especially when it comes to emergency situations. Always know what to do in a medical emergency by having the American Red Cross First Aid app on your phone, as well as other essential apps for storms and emergencies.

From info on asthma-related emergencies to burn care to CPR instructions, these apps have you covered for a wide variety of situations.

6. Donate your used phone for good.

Planning to upgrade to a new iPhone? Donate your old tech for good.

Consider donating your old phone to Rainforest Connection, an organization that turns phones into rainforest monitoring devices that listen and locate chainsaw sounds, allowing for the interception of illegal deforestation.

You can also donate your phone to a local women’s shelter to help women in domestic violence situations have a device to quickly use in emergency situations.

check out this link for other resources to similar causes.

Article by Katie Dupere

Freelancer tips for Client Questionnaire

review: tips and tricks freelancers in the tech field could use.

Steven Sepulveda

As some of you may know I am one of the students in class that is on their final stretch of the course(Leslie SmithSteven Ruiz, and myself) and I am working on my client project so after doing tons of research online I came to the conclusion that I need a very extensive questionnaire to properly determine whether or not a Potential Lead can become a Qualified prospect.

Overview: Stages of the sales funnel and how I use it

Lead (Suspect): A lead (also known as a suspect) is someone you have not spoken to. But if a lead appears similar in profile to your target customer, you may decide that they are worth pursuing. Track your most fruitful sources of leads (that is, leads that become customers).

What do Leads look like pertaining to my business?                    …

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Study Guide

really useful for beginners in Java

The Code Cabinet

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What to know:

  • What variables are
  • What Booleans are
  • What Arithmetic operators are 
  • How to find a string and its length
  • How to make a Basic alert in a javascript console
  • What Js is and What its used for

Sources:

JavaScript lesson 1

https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1RTn4lOXw_7pDEGWei36laBYXZZg7HnyPXKFCRYmFkOY/edit#slide=id.gcc28fa89e_1_6

JavaScript Lesson 2

https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1pdNQl0a3pRKdSz9X2K2XX-tnZjVEWMbTJ43Fy2g5pjw/edit#slide=id.p

JavaScript Lesson 3

https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1Vpe-4KF-F2UAhxpwfQ-LAD1xLqpCXe67H_Nvyy12LkY/edit#slide=id.p

JavaScript Lesson 4

https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1JYvIa12bs-Kp_721S2mZbL-D6tO-UHjS263vuQml1B8/edit#slide=id.p

Flip Quiz Game: I did not change any of the information from this game , therefore it can be used as a fun way to study. It does actually have similar questions to the ones on the test. Challenge yourself while having fun the same time. Click the image to proceed.Screen Shot 2015-12-03 at 12.41.09 PM.png

Hope that helped guys 🙂

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Photoshop cs6: Halloween project

For class, every student had to photoshop a picture from an outside element then make it scary/

My project was inspired by the movie/game franchise Silent Hill, the overall theme has a picture of me and two of the main characters forever condemned in a portrait setting within the horrors of Alyssa Gillespie, the tormented soul of a little girl who takes revenge on her cult corrupted town of zealots as a demon looking to blacken the very souls which condemned her. (trailer content below)

hope you guys like it.

Happy Haunting everyone!

condemned in silent hill

condemned in silent hill