2010年11月30日 星期二

Things Are Different Today..

Things Are Different Today..: "

Sometimes it’s hard to see just how much the internet has really changed things. The holidays are just one example of how things are intensely different than they were before. It’s not easy to always see the differences because they tend to creep up on us a little bit at a time. For example, you have to be a certain age to remember the anticipation kids used to have for holiday cartoons. That was because there was no cable television, there weren’t hundreds of channels, there were no DVDs or even VHS cassettes of the holiday specials. Instead there were four or five network channels that showed certain cartoons each year at Christmas and maybe they would make a holiday special with a popular favorite cartoon like Scooby Doo, the Flintstones, the Chipmunks, or the Smurfs. Kids today can’t really imagine how much more impact these characters, shows, and holiday specials used to have on us. The reason? Scarcity. We couldn’t simply go to Youtube and look up the Grinch or Frosty the Snowman. We had to wait.

Sure, you might be saying, watching cartoons on holidays is a real quaint tradition and YouTube has taken some of the specialness out of it, but what about real change? Well, certainly no one gathers around the television on Thursday night to watch holiday cartoons as a family any longer. Nor do most people even bother to send Christmas cards. Instead, a group email or more likely a Facebook page update or a Twitter status change is what you should expect from most people. It used to be that long distance was pretty expensive when you called another town, state, city, or country, but these days we can call anyone anytime we like and it only costs airtime, not the distance. How did this change the holidays? Well, it used to be that we would call the people we loved on the holidays and because it was rare and expensive, we would treasure the moment. No more. Scarcity is gone. We can call anytime, even for free if we use Skype or Gtalk. And those holiday greeting cards? Chances are the only ones you get will be from your 97 year old great aunt or from some company that mass produces them and sends them out in bulk because they hope to capitalize on the good feelings that such cards used to generate.

I can’t really say that the internet has empowered or brought about new holiday traditions. Sure, you can have a Skype conference call with the whole family now, but who really does that? Maybe the closest thing would be posting our holiday photos on Facebook. Of course, maybe I’m just bitter and jaded and remembering things from a rosy past at the expense of the present moment’s technological achievements.

After all, it didn’t use to be that you could follow Santa’s progress on the NORAD site or have Santa send your kid from the North Pole using Fiverr or some other site. And then there are the great ways you can shop without leaving home now. No need to go to the mall and see the fancy animatronic displays any more or even to go to the next town to see the Christmas displays. We don’t need to leave home anymore to do everything. I’m not so sure things are better, in fact, I would say they are worse.

When I was a kid people used to complain that Christmas had become too commercial but if they could have seen what it has become today they would have sighed with relief and kept all their complaints to themselves. Those simple commercial traditions of yesteryear seem incredibly quaint now.

Hanging the Christmas lights, going out to drive through the neighborhoods to see other people’s lights, fighting the crowds at the big department stores, buying and sending the Christmas cards – not to mention writing with a pen inside of each one a personalized and thoughtful message- these seem so innocent now.

christmas back home

via http://xkcd.com/361/

Imagine that we complained that Christmas started on the heels of Thanksgiving but these days, my email inbox has been filled with holiday specials since July. We used to head down to the local mall to meet some old drunk Santa and maybe to tell some elf our secret Christmas wishes, but now, the internet lists hundreds of places and somehow knowing that Santa is simultaneously in hundreds or thousands of spots at the same time makes it completely impossible for me to suspend my disbelief for even a second.

The days of chestnuts roasting by the open fire, families gathered around a TV with an antenna to watch Frosty the Snowman, or even getting a card from someone you thought had forgotten all about you are dead and gone. It’s a shame really. Cyber Christmas just doesn’t feel the same. Not that I liked getting elbows in my ribs as I fought for Christmas bargains at the five and dime, but there was something real about it that just doesn’t seem the same when we spend time on Amazon shopping and then have the gift shipped to the recipient without ever actually touching it.

Sure, those Amazon elves do a nice job wrapping things, but I sort of miss the fingerprints on the scotch tape. The convenience is there, that’s for sure, but something important has really died and gone away forever. I guess it must be the same way my grandparents felt when they watched us kids watching color cartoons on the television and they thought of going caroling with friends or attending a church mass on Christmas Eve. Maybe I’m just becoming an old fuddy duddy.

I can’t help wondering though what the future will hold for the holidays. Will it be a matter of having automated holiday greetings that get sent to people at the right time. Maybe we can have our shopping done for us so that not only do we not touch the gifts but we never even see them. Or instead, maybe we will all just plug in to the internet and our cyber selves will pretend to go caroling and watch Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer on an old television with an antenna.

2010年11月29日 星期一

Messenger 也可以撥打 市話和行動電話囉!!

Messenger 也可以撥打 市話和行動電話囉!!: "

Windows Live Messenger 也可以撥打 市話和行動電話囉!!

小綠人也好些日子沒有放上一些教學文章了呢~ 因為最近都課業繁重阿!~ 但是這個還是一定要介紹的啦!

Windows Live Messenger 從今天開始也可以按按數字、打電話給您不在電腦前的親朋好友囉! 只要你下載最新的 Windows Live Messenger 8.5 版 就可以透過主視窗的[電話按鈕]來撥打市話電話聽筒和行動電話行動電話囉! 本服務是由台灣微軟與中華電信轉投資企業[是方電訊 Chief Telecom]合作提供,透過此服務撥打國內手機可節省50%至80%的通話費用,MSN用戶只要在www.msnvoip.hinet.net登入Windows Live Messenger的帳號與密碼(首次使用必須註冊加入會員),並在線上購買(ATM轉帳、網路 ATM、信用卡)是方電訊的點數,就可以使用Windows Live 網路電話的功能。撥打市話每分鐘0.66元、國內行動電話每分鐘3.2元,在這個物價漲薪水沒漲的時代,對愛TALK的人來說,真的多了一種可以省錢錢的方法!還有即日起到8月31日前,凡是註冊MSN網路電話即免費送10分鐘的通話費,並且還可以抽IPEVO MSN 專屬話機,與Wii+Wii Fit 等大獎,要就快囉!



天天在用的 Windows Live Messenger 不但能拿來跟隔壁班的麻吉進行語音或視訊通話,加入了超省的網路電話服務,還可以沒有負擔地和南北奔波或在海外打拼的親人用電話溝通。而且就算在瀏覽網頁時,使用起來也都能得心應手,實現你溝通無界限的夢想。

趕緊跟著小綠人加入網路電話一族,沒事就用 Windows Live 網路電話來 talk talk 吧!

MSN 網路電話服務與官方詳細介紹網頁: http://livecall.spaces.live.com (小綠人進話論)



MSN丟網址幫忙衝人氣?釣魚詐騙流行!小心被騙!: "






7 Free Useful eBooks That Every Blogger Should Read

7 Free Useful eBooks That Every Blogger Should Read: "

blogging ebooksI have never been one to read books or PDFs on my computer screen. Give me a paperback book, or a printed page, and I can get through it quickly, but sit me in front of a screen and I just can’t make myself read it. Now with the advent of eReaders like the Kindle, and tablets like the iPad, reading a book off a screen isn’t as hard as it used to be.

There is no end to the wealth of free eBooks available online today, from literature to books on social media, to teaching yourself how to use Linux. There is one topic, blogging, with countless eBooks available, both paid and free, and it just takes a little bit of digging to find some of the best ones out there. This list of 7 books is a good place to start, with advice for both beginners and advanced bloggers alike.

Deep Secrets of Successful Blogging

blogging ebooks

It may be a few years old, but the wealth of information contained in Chitika’s Deep Secrets of Successful Blogging makes it just as relevant a book today as when it was first posted on their site.

Featuring the words of wisdom of 30 prominent bloggers including Chris Pirillo and Darren Rowse amongst others, the free eBook contains encouragement, advice and guidelines for the aspiring blogger.

Get the free eBook here.

279 Days to Overnight Success

free blogging ebook

279 Days to Overnight Success by Chris Guillebeau is available for free download in PDF format from his website. Not only useful for bloggers, the free eBook is a must-read for any writer, artist or modern entrepreuner who wants to create an online presence for themselves.

Guillebeau uses his own journey to becoming a full-time writer as a guideline for others to follow.

The free PDF is available for download here.

If his style appeals to you, be sure to check out his earlier tile, A Brief Guide to World Domination available for download here.

Viral Copy

free blogging ebook

Viral Copy by Brian Clark of Copyblogger takes on a very straightforward approach and can truly be seen as an essential guidebook for any blogger to read.

From the art of writing headlines to link baiting to how to use humour in your writing, Clark leaves no stone unturned, on how to drive traffic to your blog. In fact, you can see him put his own advice to good use with the links used in the eBook, making it hard to read the book offline.

Viral Copy is available for downlaod here.

Make Money Online With John Chow dot Com

free blogging ebook

At first glance, Make Money Online by John Chow book probably sounds like one of those get-rich-quick scams but don’t be fooled. There is no hidden secret that will make you reach instantaneously. Instead, John Chow gives you an outline on how to drive traffic to your site, as well as giving specific recommendations on ad networks, and most importantly, how to monetize your blog. The book is best suited for beginners who are just getting started and don’t know much about how to make money in the blogging world.

While the book is available in paperback from Amazon, John Chow offers it as a free download on his site here.

Traffic Roots

blogging ebook

You’ll find that a lot eBooks about blogging focus on one specific topic – traffic. And rightly so, because without an audience to read what you’re writing – it all starts to feel futile. Traffic Roots by Jens Berget covers important topics like Search Engine Optimization, Email Marketing, Keyword Search and much more in over 130 pages of advice, tips and tricks.

Traffic roots is another ideal title for beginners, and may also contain some interesting tips for the slightly more advanced blogger. Download the PDF here.

Beginners Guide to Search Engine Optimization

blogging ebook

If your focus is to learn more about Search Engine Optimization, and need an introductory explanation, the Beginners Guide to Search Engine Optimization is a great place to start.

The guide covers the basic terms, explains how it all works, and tells you what you need to do to make use of these concepts on your own website.

There is no direct link to download the book, but rather can have it emailed to you by submitting your email here.

Viral Marketing

blogging ebooks

Getting people to your blog is not just about SEO and link building. You also have to know how to market yourself. Viral Marketing by David Meerman Scott has been available for a couple of years but is a good place to start to understand what viral marketing is and what it takes to get in on the game.

The title is available for download here, along with a few other interesting titles by Scott.

What eBooks for bloggers are on your virtual shelf? Let us know in the comments.

Image credit: Shutterstock

5 of the Best New User Experiences of 2010

5 of the Best New User Experiences of 2010: "

Mashable Awards Image

As part of the ongoing Mashable Awards, we’re taking a closer look at each of the nomination categories. This is “Best Website User Experience.” Be sure to nominate your favorites and join us for the Gala in Las Vegas!

When it comes to user experience, designers and developers must do much more than present their users with a “pretty face” web page.

The user experience (UX) of a site or app involves much more than looks; the UX is something that lingers on after the user has left your site. It lies in ease of use, perceived value, whether desired goals were achieved and so much more. The user interface (UI) is only part of that larger experience, but it can contribute much to a user’s impression of the app.

In writing about the best web designs of 2010, form and function each played a large role in determining our choices. But when we think about user experience, function takes absolute precedence.

What sites and apps were the most interesting, the most useful, the most innovative of the past year? In this post, we examine five groundbreaking new UX/UIs from 2010 and discuss how each one expands our expectations of the user experience.

1. Quora

One of the earlier launches this year, Quora was a buzz-heavy private beta service in 2009. As a product of some of the best design minds at Facebook, the site was almost guaranteed to have an excellent UX from the start.

We love Quora’s elegant interactions. It looks simple; it prompts instant and easy engagement; and it takes the hide-and-seek elements of a Q&A site away, leaving the user with a trove of relevant information at his or her fingertips.

We’re not the only ones who love Quora’s design. For a bit of meta navel-gazing, read this Quora Q&A on why people like Quora’s design.

Initially, another thing that made Quora’s UX so excellent was the quality of its membership. Have a question about Facebook? A Facebooker would likely answer it. Questions about venture capital? Here are some actual investors to talk to you. Marketing? Ad execs were on the site, too.

2. Hipmunk

One thing we loved about Hipmunk from the start is that it took a traditionally bad user experience — airline flight search — and made it into a good one.

This startup reimagined the most important element of online flight search: how results are displayed. It took a convoluted, multi-entry/multi-exit process and made it simple to behold and linear to walk through, creating a user experience that is far from the stress-inducing nightmare flight search once was.

The company has also hinted it will be turning its eyes toward other types of travel services soon, possibly hotel search. We can’t wait.

To get the big picture, check out the video above, and the excellent interview blogger Robert Scoble conducted with Hipmunk co-founder Steve Huffman.

3. Seesmic Desktop 2

Seesmic launched a new iteration of its popular desktop app just a couple months ago. Dubbed Seesmic Desktop 2, the application also included an entire marketplace of plugins, making SD2 an all-in-one social media access point — a great set of features for run-of-the-mill social media narcissists, as well as businesses that need more control and monitoring tools for their web efforts.

Seesmic’s Silverlight-built, Mac- and Windows-compatible product also came wrapped in a gorgeous and functional UI with elegant and subtle details, making it a joy to behold as well as a pleasure to use.

During some turbulent times for third-party applications, Seesmic founder Loic LeMeur proved his very salient point: If you make a great product, build in great functionality, and give users a great experience, you can still build a business on someone else’s platform.

4. Flipboard

Flipboard launched this year as one of the first iPad apps that sought to reimagine social media for a new form factor.

The tablet gave designers and developers a chance to think about lean-back, glossy, high-end design experiences. Of course, magazines had a heyday; their content is already almost a perfect fit for the iPad. But when you think about social media content — those messy, spaghetti-like, intertwining and overlapping feeds of drama, irrelevance and the occasional gem — you begin to see what a challenge the makers of Flipboard had on their hands. Could social media be both beautiful and functional on a tablet?

Flipboard integrates personalized Twitter and Facebook feeds to build a social magazine for each user. In an initial review we called it “gorgeous and a pleasure to use,” and the app has continued to rack up the platitudes from social media junkies around the web. Its core value proposition is more than just its beautiful, mag-like design; it makes the experience of reading social feeds simpler, faster and better.

5. Roku

Without a doubt, 2010 has been the first big year for Internet-connected living room devices. We’ve seen cool things in the past from PlayStation, Xbox and Boxee; however, 2010 brought something new: affordability and ease of entry.

Roku’s set-top boxes start at just $60; already priced to win. Each model also comes with built-in WiFi and they are easy to install — they practically set themselves up. They connect to some of the most popular Internet content providers, including Netflix, MLB.tv and now Hulu, as well.

The Roku UI is simple, clean, bright and intuitive; it reminds us of the more user-friendly gaming interfaces, like that of Nintendo’s Wii. It’s a design language that says, “I’m not technical; I’m fun.” Very quickly, the design itself fades into the background and the content becomes all the user notices.

In a word, Roku’s UX is amazing because it makes something that was supposed to be complicated and scary (bringing Internet content to the living room) inexpensive, easy and a pleasure to use.

What Are Your Picks?

Those are five of our favorite user experiences from 2010; we’d love to know what impressed you this year. In the comments, tell us about the apps, devices and websites that you’ve loved using throughout 2010 or nominate them for a Mashable Award.

The Mashable Awards Gala at Cirque du Soleil Zumanity (Vegas)

In partnership with Cirque du Soleil, The Mashable Awards Gala event will bring together the winners and nominees, the Mashable community, partners, media, the marketing community, consumer electronics and technology brands and attendees from the 2011 International CES Convention to Las Vegas on Thursday, January 6, 2011. Together, we will celebrate the winners and the community of the Mashable Awards at the Cirque du Soleil Zumanity stage in the beautiful New York New York Hotel. The event will include acts and performances from our partner Cirque du Soleil Zumanity. In addition, there will be special guest presenters and appearances.

Date: Thursday, January 6th, 2011 (during International CES Convention week)
Time: 7:00 – 10:00 pm PT
Location: Cirque du Soleil Zumanity, New York New York Hotel, Las Vegas
Agenda: Networking, Open Bars, Acts, Surprises and the Mashable Awards Gala presentations
Socialize: Facebook, Foursquare, Meetup, Plancast, Twitter (Hashtag: #MashableAwards)

Sponsorships are available. Please contact sponsorships@mashable.com for more information.

Register for Mashable Awards Gala at Cirque du Soleil Zumanity stage (Las Vegas - 2011 International CES convention) [Ticketed Event] in Las Vegas, NV  on Eventbrite

Thanks to our sponsors:

Mashable Awards Gala Partner:

cirque logo From a group of 20 street performers at its beginnings in 1984, Cirque du Soleil is now a global entertainment organization providing high-quality artistic entertainment. The company has over 5,000 employees, including more than 1,200 artists from close to 50 different countries.

Cirque du Soleil has brought wonder and delight to nearly 100 million spectators in 300 cities on five continents. In 2010 Cirque du Soleil, will present 21 shows simultaneously throughout the world, including seven in Las Vegas.

For more information about Cirque du Soleil, visit www.cirquedusoleil.com

Mashable Awards Online Partner:

The Fresh DietHave you ever wished for your own personal gourmet Chef?

The Fresh Diet is like having a Cordon Bleu chef prepare your meals in your own kitchen. There’s no cooking, cleaning, shopping – just fresh prepared delicious meals, hand delivered to your door daily! Whether you want to lose weight or just want to eat healthy, The Fresh Diet can help you meet your goals. The best news, we’re giving away a FREE week of The Fresh Diet every day on our Facebook page. Just click here to become a fan and you could be the next winner. Join now!

Mashable Awards Partner:

Join us at the 2011 International CES®, the global platform for inspired ideas and innovation. With 2,500 exhibitors, CES continues to be the world’s largest consumer technology tradeshow and always reflects the dynamic consumer electronics industry. The International CES is not open to the general public and all attendees must be in the CE industry to be eligible to attend the show. Register FREE for the 2011 CES with priority code MSHB, an exclusive promotion for Mashable Readers.

Mashable Awards Category Sponsor:

Research In Motion is a leading designer, manufacturer and marketer of innovative wireless solutions for the worldwide mobile communications market. Through the development of integrated hardware, software and services that support multiple wireless network standards, RIM provides platforms and solutions for seamless access to time-sensitive information including email, phone, SMS messaging, Internet and intranet-based applications including the BlackBerry® wireless platform and the new BlackBerry PlayBook. For the latest on the BlackBerry PlayBook visit the Inside BlackBerry Blog.

Win an iPad!

Join us on Facebook to learn how to enter Dynadot’s I Can Haz iPad Giveaway!

Dynadot is an ICANN accredited domain name registrar and web host where you can register the perfect domain name affordably, reliably, simply and securely. Whether you are a blogger, business owner, or planning on creating the next best Internet meme you need a domain that represents you. Let Dynadot help you establish your web identity today.

Mobile Future is a broad-based coalition of businesses, non-profit organizations and individuals interested in and dedicated to advocating for an environment in which innovations in wireless technology and services are enabled and encouraged. Our mission is to educate the public and key decision makers on innovations in the wireless industry that have transformed the way Americans work and play and to advocate continued investment in wireless technologies.

Our “Mobile Year in Review 2010” animation proves a glimpse into the most notable breakthroughs in the wireless industry this year.

Yahoo! is an innovative technology company that operates the largest digital media, content, and communications business in the world. Yahoo! keeps more than half a billion consumers worldwide connected to what matters to them most, and delivers powerful audience solutions to advertisers through its unique combination of Science + Art + Scale. Yahoo! is headquartered in Sunnyvale, California. For more information, visit the company’s blog, Yodel Anecdotal.

Mashable Awards Gala Silver Sponsor:

Aro Mobile is an intelligent mobile experience that includes better email, connected contacts, smarter calendar and improved browsing.

The Aro system automatically learns what’s important in your life—the people, places, dates and organizations you care about most. In your communications, Aro automatically identifies people, places, events, dates,organizations and locations. From any recognized term, Aro offers quick action menus to speed up your day.

The unique Aro experience is powered by advanced web services: next generation natural language processing and semantic data analytics services. Aro gives you the power to see through the clutter and focus your mobile life.

Research In Motion is a leading designer, manufacturer and marketer of innovative wireless solutions for the worldwide mobile communications market. Through the development of integrated hardware, software and services that support multiple wireless network standards, RIM provides platforms and solutions for seamless access to time-sensitive information including email, phone, SMS messaging, Internet and intranet-based applications including the BlackBerry® wireless platform and the new BlackBerry PlayBook. For the latest on the BlackBerry PlayBook visit the Inside BlackBerry Blog.

Mashable Awards Gala VIP Lounge sponsor:

Influxis image

Influxis specializes in the deployment of creative streaming solutions. Services include large scale deployment, mobile streaming, turn-key applications, and enterprise support with custom network options. With the unique combination of a worldwide network, knowledgeable developer support and nearly a decade of streaming media experience, Influxis is an essential partner to businesses, advertisers, developers, educators, and others who seek expertise in innovative streaming.

Mashable Awards After Party Sponsor:

Research In Motion is a leading designer, manufacturer and marketer of innovative wireless solutions for the worldwide mobile communications market. Through the development of integrated hardware, software and services that support multiple wireless network standards, RIM provides platforms and solutions for seamless access to time-sensitive information including email, phone, SMS messaging, Internet and intranet-based applications including the BlackBerry® wireless platform and the new BlackBerry PlayBook. For the latest on the BlackBerry PlayBook visit the Inside BlackBerry Blog.

Reviews: Boxee, Facebook, Foursquare, Hulu, Internet, Mashable, Seesmic, Twitter, Windows

More About: best user experience, best ux, Flipboard, hipmunk, ix, mashable awards, mashable awards 2010, quora, UI, user experience, ux/ui

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