Industry Buzz

Basis, Edin, and Forefront: A Look at Business Themes

WordPress.com News -

We add new themes to the Theme Showcase each week, including free and premium themes for businesses, organizations, and your professional projects. Here’s a trio of business themes transformed by three very different types of users: a professional travel and food writer, a Buddhist podcast host, and a fly fishing outfitter in Australia. roam & home Chicago-based travel and food curator Karen Valentine, the founder of roam & home, presents a beautifully designed site with Basis, a premium theme. Wide featured images add splashes of color to the homepage, while the Brandon Grotesque heading font — available to Custom Design upgrade users — adds a touch of style to each content block. As you scroll down the home page, travel quotes inspire you to dream up your next big trip — a subtle but elegant touch: Karen’s portal for wanderlust includes travel itineraries and guides (Jamaica in the winter, anyone?), and a journal for blog updates and photography from her adventures. These sections are accessible at the top right in a simple Custom Menu: With Basis, you can build a site using a drag-and-drop page builder interface — create a section, add content, and then move it around — which makes creating a landing page or microsite easier. (Preview this drag-and-drop interface in the video at the top of the Basis page.) Tip: While not activated on Karen’s site, you can also make a full-width slideshow with Basis, creating an eye-catching homepage for your personal or business brand, professional projects, or company’s products and services. Visit the Basis theme page for details. Off the Cushion with Danny Fisher Launched at the end of July, the free Edin theme is packed with features for a business or professional site, and podcast host Danny Fisher shows it off nicely. With four custom page templates, Edin allows you to promote your company or work in different ways. At Off the Cushion, Danny uses the Front Page Template, using a big featured image and bold white text to introduce his independent podcast on Buddhism news and ideas. You also can’t miss his Custom Menu to other parts of his site, as well as exterior websites, under the header. In the footer, Danny activates the three widget areas for an About blurb (using a Text Widget), a stream of recent posts, and an Image Widget displaying his podcast’s T-shirt. Tip: To unify the site and promote his web presence, Danny displays social media icons, from Twitter to Instagram to LinkedIn, at the top and bottom of his site. Think of other ways to make your site visually cohesive; uploading a Site Logo (available on a growing list of themes) that matches a custom Image Widget in your sidebar is another option. You can do much more with this free theme — visit the Edin page for details. High Country Outfitters High Country Outfitters stocks a range of clothing and gear for fly fishing, snow sports, and other outdoor activities in the Snowy Mountains of Australia. Using the custom page templates and other features of the premium theme Forefront, the outfitter promotes its shop, fly fishing trips, product news, and local fishing reports. Bold call-to-action buttons (“Visit Shop,” “Guiding & Tuition”) lead visitors to more information. With Forefront, you can also display customer testimonials (not shown on the High Country Outfitters site). Tip: Use a grid-style layout to visually organize a navigation page to other pages and links on your site. Check out the outfitters’ online shop (below), which uses a Grid Page Template. To see if this premium theme is right for you, visit the Forefront page for more. We have a growing number of professional and business themes — free and premium — for work projects, organizations, and small businesses. From simple, elegant landing pages to multi-page websites, you can create the perfect space for you and your brand.Filed under: Community, Themes, WordPress.com

Rackspace Weekly Digest: September 12

The Rackspace Blog & Newsroom -

This week, we gear up for Rackspace::Solve New York, show you how to set up your Rackspace email on the iPhone 6 and launch a new Master Agent Program. Check out all that and more in the weekly digest. Rackspace::Solve New York Is Thursday, September 18 Next week, Rackspace::Solve heads to the Big Apple with an exciting lineup of customers and partners showcasing how to overcome tough challenges in your businesses. You’ll hear from cutting-edge companies like CloudMine, Docker, SumAll and Under Armour. Rackspace::Solve New York is Thursday, September 18 at The Cipriani Wall Street. Register now. Hitting Climate Change Hard, Hack4Good Style Rackspace is so excited, once again, to sponsor Geeklist’s Hack4Good this weekend. This time around, the Hack4Good hackathon will focus on projects and prototypes that address global climate change. Upgrading To iPhone 6? Setting Up Your Rackspace Email Is A Snap. iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus were announced this week. If you’re upgrading to iPhone 6, you can setup your Rackspace Hosted Exchange email in less than two minutes and in only a few clicks. Expanding Our Partner Network With A Master Agent Program As part of our continued effort to better serve our partners, we’re expanding our Rackspace Partner Network to include a new Master Agent/Agent Program, a program through which a new segment of partners can offer Rackspace Managed Cloud and award-winning Fanatical Support to their end customers. 4 Reference Architectures To Optimize Your Ecommerce Our Rackspace Digital application specialists put together four reference architectures that optimize the right mix of price, performance and control for most businesses to help you make the most out of your ecommerce platform. How Downtime Impacts The Bottom Line 2014 [Infographic] This year’s research confirms that downtime is still causing headaches for end-users and IT professionals. However, in addition to the frustration caused by outages, it’s also costing businesses more than ever. Take a look in the How Downtime Impacts the Bottom Line 2014 infographic. Does A Hosted Virtualized Environment Require New Tools? Many enterprises have invested millions of dollars over the years in IT management, monitoring and automation solutions for their data centers. So a natural question that arises when considering migration of workloads to hosted environments is around management tools. What new capabilities will be required? What new skills will our organization need? Is our existing toolset extensible at all?

All you need to know about WordPress 4.0

BigRock Blog -

If you’ve been living under a rock then you probably missed the news that WordPress 4.0 is now available to be installed. WordPress 4.0 has been named “Benny” to honor the famous jazz player Benny Goodman and brings along some pretty cool updates. For all security enthusiasts, this update will be a tad bit disappointing as it doesn’t offer any significant security features. But don’t be disappointed as the update is going to make your experience using WordPress, way more efficient. We wanted to put everything in words for you, but WordPress has already released this great video which gives you a detailed explanation about all the changes. So sit back and enjoy the video. If you’ve realized, the entire focus of this WordPress version is inclined towards making the process of creating, managing and publishing into a seamless experience. It’s time you experienced the new change. If you’re ready, just jump into your WordPress dashboard and install the latest WordPress 4.0

Fashion Week

Oh, How Pinteresting! -

Fashion Week season is here and the runways are lined with new styles and trends we’ll be seeing in the year ahead. To help take these looks from the catwalk to your closet, we asked style icon Olivia Palermo to share the best trends from shows around the world. First up: New York! Olivia’s Best of NYFW board is all about the it looks of the moment. She’ll share the top designs and ideas on more ways to recreate the looks at home. It’s not just about who you’re wearing, but how you wear it. “Creating the boards gives me the ability to edit the best selection of runway looks. Pinterest is a great platform, for generating ideas on styling and it’s a great way to see what people are wearing on the streets around the world.” Olivia will share even more inspiration from the runways of London and Paris with best-of boards for each city. Check back here for a fashion recap from each place throughout the month, with a final rendezvous in France. For more of-the-moment trends and fresh looks for work, weekends and nights out, check out our Pin Picks fall style guide. —Lauren Michaels, currently Pinning to Style Snaps.

Stoked by Reasons To Be Creative

SiteGround Blog -

I spent last week in Brighton (UK), attending the Reasons To Be Creative conference, which SiteGround sponsored. Right from the beginning of the event I started hearing the word “stoked” (completely and intensely enthusiastic, exhilarated, or excited about something, according to the Urban Dictionary) unusually often. I heard it repeatedly used not only by John Davey (the great guy organizing the event), but also by many of the attendees. By the end of the event I already knew how it felt like to be stoked myself. Reasons To Be Creative is one of those rare opportunities to get truly inspired, that you just can’t miss, especially if you are working in the digital creativity space, and even if you are just a business-oriented person with no previous experience with Photoshop or any other Adobe product (as I am). Allowing yourself to be challenged, provoked and inspired is a key ingredient of life and we should be looking for opportunities to get that. Events like this tempt you to want more for yourself, to get better in what you do, and most of all, to unleash your creativity. Creativity is a result of a hard work You thought that creativity is a gift and comes easily to few chosen people only? Well there were many speakers on this event, who are globally recognized for their creative genius that were eager to challenge this notion and to present creativity as something that everyone can and should strive for. As Jon Howard (Exec Product Manager for BBC, @swingpants) pointed out creativity is more a result of hard work and drawing connecting lines between the dots of your experience and knowledge. Kate Moross who now makes the album covers for many cool labels, and James White whose illustrations led him to working with clients like Toyota, MTV and more, have a lot to say about the process and the hard work to get there. They wandered for a while, experimented with their work, before settling for the style that makes them unique and brings them the big clients. Creativity requires courage to be yourself When you add some courage to the hard work you are on the right track! Many people work jobs that give them financial stability and security, but don’t make them happy and don’t allow them to develop their true potential and creativity. If you feel you are selling your soul for hire, you may be inspired by Sara Blake, a graphics designer and artist from New York, who made amazing large scale murals for the Footlocker Nike House of Hoops Store in New York City. She urges you: “Don’t wait for someone to hire you to do work”. Many people feel that employers and customers put limitations to their creativity. And from my standpoint of a project manager working with designers, I would say: yes, in every commercial project there are business objectives, apart from the pure aesthetic pleasure. However, you should not be afraid of having your own distinctive style and ideas. People doing design are not just instruments in the hands of the business people. We do things together, each of us bringing our unique expertise. When the aimed business goal matches the designer’s unique style, the best results are achieved. Creativity is not afraid of criticism If you feel inspired to make the leap in the dark, unleashing yourself, you should be aware that criticism and disapproval are inevitable, but if you accept the good and the bad as sources of learning, you’ll most probably learn faster. James Victore, whose art is full of social causes and powerful messages, said “you have no friends, no enemies, just good teachers”. So if you think you carry that creativity bean inside you that needs to be uncovered, Reasons To Be Creative will challenge you to stop being an artist in disguise, hired by someone to do anything else but the work you really want to do. You can hear so many amazing, real-life stories of wonderful artists that there is no way you get out of this event without some courage to do the things you like. I hope you will also be as stoked as I was. You can see pictures from Reasons to be Creative in our Facebook album.

Stoked by Reasons To Be Creative

SiteGround Blog -

I spent last week in Brighton (UK), attending the Reasons To Be Creative conference, which SiteGround sponsored. Right from the beginning of the event I started hearing the word “stoked” (completely and intensely enthusiastic, exhilarated, or excited about something, according to the Urban Dictionary) unusually often. I heard it repeatedly used not only by John Davey (the great guy organizing the event), but also by many of the attendees. By the end of the event I already knew how it felt like to be stoked myself. Reasons To Be Creative is one of those rare opportunities to get truly inspired, that you just can’t miss, especially if you are working in the digital creativity space, and even if you are just a business-oriented person with no previous experience with Photoshop or any other Adobe product (as I am). Allowing yourself to be challenged, provoked and inspired is a key ingredient of life and we should be looking for opportunities to get that. Events like this tempt you to want more for yourself, to get better in what you do, and most of all, to unleash your creativity. Creativity is a result of a hard work You thought that creativity is a gift and comes easily to few chosen people only? Well there were many speakers on this event, who are globally recognized for their creative genius that were eager to challenge this notion and to present creativity as something that everyone can and should strive for. As Jon Howard (Exec Product Manager for BBC, @swingpants) pointed out creativity is more a result of hard work and drawing connecting lines between the dots of your experience and knowledge. Kate Moross who now makes the album covers for many cool labels, and James White whose illustrations led him to working with clients like Toyota, MTV and more, have a lot to say about the process and the hard work to get there. They wandered for a while, experimented with their work, before settling for the style that makes them unique and brings them the big clients. Creativity requires courage to be yourself When you add some courage to the hard work you are on the right track! Many people work jobs that give them financial stability and security, but don’t make them happy and don’t allow them to develop their true potential and creativity. If you feel you are selling your soul for hire, you may be inspired by Sara Blake, a graphics designer and artist from New York, who made amazing large scale murals for the Footlocker Nike House of Hoops Store in New York City. She urges you: “Don’t wait for someone to hire you to do work”. Many people feel that employers and customers put limitations to their creativity. And from my standpoint of a project manager working with designers, I would say: yes, in every commercial project there are business objectives, apart from the pure aesthetic pleasure. However, you should not be afraid of having your own distinctive style and ideas. People doing design are not just instruments in the hands of the business people. We do things together, each of us bringing our unique expertise. When the aimed business goal matches the designer’s unique style, the best results are achieved. Creativity is not afraid of criticism If you feel inspired to make the leap in the dark, unleashing yourself, you should be aware that criticism and disapproval are inevitable, but if you accept the good and the bad as sources of learning, you’ll most probably learn faster. James Victore, whose art is full of social causes and powerful messages, said “you have no friends, no enemies, just good teachers”. So if you think you carry that creativity bean inside you that needs to be uncovered, Reasons To Be Creative will challenge you to stop being an artist in disguise, hired by someone to do anything else but the work you really want to do. You can hear so many amazing, real-life stories of wonderful artists that there is no way you get out of this event without some courage to do the things you like. I hope you will also be as stoked as I was. You can see pictures from Reasons to be Creative in our Facebook album.

Writing and Social: Why the Written Word Is Your Marketing Advantage

Social Media Examiner -

Do you write content for your business? Are you looking to improve the quality of your writing and your storytelling skills? To explore why the written word matters in social media, I interview Ann Handley for this episode of the Social Media Marketing podcast. More About This Show The Social Media Marketing podcast is a show [...]This post Writing and Social: Why the Written Word Is Your Marketing Advantage first appeared on Social Media Examiner. Social Media Examiner - Your Guide to the Social Media Jungle

The Secret to Getting a Second Sales Meeting

Pickaweb Blog -

Does this sound familiar? You meet with a potential customer.  It goes well.  She seemed to enjoy it.  You certainly did.  It looks like you might well work together. So, you run back to the office.  You prepare the information she wants.  You send it to her on time.  You can almost smell the sale. […] The post The Secret to Getting a Second Sales Meeting appeared first on Web Hosting Blog | Pickaweb.co.uk. Related posts: How to Increase your Sales with a Sales Funnel (the easy way) … Practical Steps to Increase your Sales with a Sales Funnel... Improve Sales Performance & Close More Sales Using Yesware – Product Review Do you feel that your emails are being ignored by... 3 things you can do TODAY to improve your website! (…and increase sales) A website is a work in progress. There is no...

Hitting Climate Change Hard, Hack4Good Style

The Rackspace Blog & Newsroom -

Rackspace is so excited, once again, to sponsor Geeklist’s Hack4Good this weekend. This time around, the Hack4Good hackathon will focus on projects and prototypes that address global climate change. “As Rackers we’re all about treating other people well, like friends and family, and the environment we live in has a huge impact on people’s lives around the world, so our involvement is a part of helping each other out,” said Lucy Mendel, Rackspace Software Developer. It is awesome to be able to partner with an organization that tackles two amazing desires in one: complex problem-solving and contributing to the greater good, and we would love for more developers to join. From Abuja, Nigeria to San Francisco, Calif. to Baguio, Philippines, 3,000-plus planet-conscious hackers are expected to join forces this weekend to harness the power of technology to create solutions to help protect our planet from climate change at Geeklist’s Hack4Good 0.6 Global Climate Change Hackathon. Technologists, designers, environmentalists, thought leaders and more will convene in over 40 cities to work on one of 15 global climate change challenges, which will be integrated for long term impact into partner non-government organizations and government organizations. The 15 challenges are: Public Awareness, Personal Impact, Digital Activism, Compelling Visualization, International Negotiations, Resilient Communities, Extreme Water Impacts, Intense Heat Impacts, Ecosystems and Nature, Collaboration, Consumer Behavior, Energy Production, Responsible Finance, Sustainable Business and Energy Efficiency and Reforestation. As a Hack4Good sponsor, Rackspace is inviting developers to take advantage of $600 of free Rackspace cloud credits through the developer+ program. “I am excited about Hack4Good because I have volunteered with 350.org and I think climate change is something that a lot of people are not fully aware of, but we need to take notice because it is affecting to our global brothers and sisters,” said Whitney Hofacker, a Racker at Geekdom San Francisco and participant in Hack4Good. We hope you take notice, and participate in this awesome weekend of collaboration, care and climate change.

9 Lesser-Known Facebook Features You’re Probably Missing

Post Planner -

Facebook is powerful… REALLY powerful! And many of Facebook’s best features go completely unnoticed.  Granted, Facebook does make it a bit difficult to find & navigate some of these tools. Interest Lists, for example — did you know you can create Facebook lists? Many people don’t. So since Facebook hasn’t done a great job telling everyone about some of these cool hidden features, I decided to write this blog post to show you some of these tragically under-used gems. So here are 9 lesser-known Facebook features that really make the site worth using! 9 Lesser-Known Facebook Features You’re Probably Missing 1. Interest Lists Do you want full control over what you see on your Facebook news feed? If so, start sorting friends & pages on custom Facebook Interest Lists. They’re also a great way to organize the stuff you need to keep track of every day. Visit this Facebook link to start an Interest List: Next select pages to add to your new list: Now just name the list & you’re good to go. You can access lists on the left side of your Facebook home page. To add a page to an existing list, visit the page, hover over the Like button & click “Add to Interest Lists” in the dropdown menu. And if you want to quickly follow some awesome Facebook Lists, check this post out: 100 Awesome Facebook Lists to Follow 2. Get Notifications This feature sends you a notification when a page or profile posts an update. You won’t miss a single post! >> Click to Tweet << For a page, you’ll find “Get Notifications” under the Like button: “Get Notifications” is in the Friends dropdown menu on a profile: 3. Follow You don’t always have to be somebody’s official friend to see what they post on Facebook. Sometimes you can just follow the person. And if their profile is open to the public, you’ll be able to engage with their posts. 4. Unfollow Do you have friends who post lots of stuff that you’re not interested in? Don’t unfriend. Just unfollow them to get that content out of your news feed. 5. Hide Posts Here’s how to prevent a page’s posts from appearing in your news feed: 6. Embed Posts No more screenshots… did you know you can embed actual Facebook posts onto your website & blog? >> Click to Tweet << And it’s a lot easier than you think. Use the Facebook embed code on your website. Heres’ what it looks like when embedded: // Post by Post Planner. 7. Graph Search I love Facebook’s search bar. I’ve used it to conduct some pretty great research. You can search for competitors, learn about your fans & find groups to network with in your industry. Learn more about Graph search here: How to Optimize Your Fan Page for Graph Search in 6 Easy Steps WARNING: Facebook’s Graph Search Changes the Meaning of a “Like” 8. Save You don’t have to read everything you see, when you see it on Facebook. Now you can save links for later. The Save feature lets you set aside articles & other links to revisit some other time. And it’s easy to access the saved links later: 9. Emoji I love to add emojis to comments I post on Facebook. It makes my posts stand out in the crowd. >> Click to Tweet << But remembering every emoji is hard. This Facebook emoji cheat sheet can help: What’s Your Favorite Hidden FB Feature? I’m sure a few awesome Facebook features were left off this list. And it wouldn’t feel complete without your contribution anyway. Please post your favorite “hidden” Facebook feature in the comments below. The post 9 Lesser-Known Facebook Features You’re Probably Missing appeared first on Post Planner.

Long-term Asia-Pacific Security

Matt Mullenweg Blog (Founder of WordPress) -

As reported by the Boston Globe, four-star Admiral Samuel Locklear, Commander of U.S. Pacific Command, provided an “unexpected answer” when recently asked “what is the biggest long-term security threat in the Pacific region?” I usually don’t do this, but check out the link to see what the United States Navy admiral who currently serves as the commander of the U.S. Pacific Command said. Hat tip: Jim Meyer.

Rackspace::Solve New York: Docker Examines The Future Of Applications

The Rackspace Blog & Newsroom -

The time has come to change the way we create, develop and ship applications. At Docker, we believe it should be quick and painless to ship application workloads across environments (dev, test and production) and hosts (laptops, data centers and clouds). Docker container technology is quickly pushing us toward that reality. Docker eliminates the friction between environments to provide faster app delivery, infinite deployment flexibility and improved service levels. Before Docker, developers and sysadmins needed to take an application, combine it with an operating system and emulate the entire server to make it portable. Now, there’s a simpler way: dockerizing the app. Docker leverages underlying container technology to ensure containers are simple to use, portable between environments and accessible to developers and sysadmins. To provide tools and resources for increased collaboration, Docker recently established a cloud-based registry known as Docker Hub. With Docker containers and the work we’re doing with our partners, like Rackspace, we’re making it possible to build, ship and run any app, anywhere. Want to hear more about how Docker is changing the way we build, ship and run apps? Ken Cochrane, Engineering Manager at Docker, will present “The Future of Applications” at Rackspace::Solve New York, a one-day summit where you’ll hear directly from companies like Docker about how they’re solving tough challenges in their businesses. Rackspace::Solve New York is Thursday, September 18 at Cipriani Wall Street. Register now for Rackspace::Solve New York. And stay tuned for details of the next Rackspace::Solve event in Chicago.

An Overview of Subdomains

1&1 Online Success Center -

The subdomain of a website is a great method for directing visitors to specific areas of your website. In this article I will discuss what a subdomain is, and how you can implement one. What is a subdomain? Domain names are split into two distinct parts: on the right is the top-level domain, such as .com or .org. And to the left of this is the domain name you have chosen for your business, such as 1and1. Put them together – 1and1.com – and you have your domain name. Subdomains are part of a domain, and they are placed before the domain name –website.1and1.com, for example.  You can use subdomains in a number of different ways – you could host completely different sites using subdomains, for example, or you could use them to simplify navigation to your existing site for visitors. Why not set up a shop subdomain for your online shop, and a blog subdomain for your blog? Both are short and easy for your visitors or customers to remember – certainly more memorable than domain.com/folder/blog.php! Add subdomains to your package. The good news is that – as the domain owner – you can add subdomains for free. Start by logging into your 1&1 account and selecting Domain Center under Domains. On the My Domains tab, tick the domain you wish to add a subdomain to. Click the Domain Settings button and choose “Edit Basic Settings” from the dropdown menu. Next, click “Subdomain Overview” and choose New Subdomain > Create Subdomain. Now you can simply type the name for your subdomain – such as shop or blog – into the Create Subdomain box. By default, your subdomain will point to the root directory of your Web space. To change this, check the box next to the subdomain and choose Subdomain Settings > Edit Destination. You can then use the navigation tools to select a specific page or folder in your site, or even redirect it to another Web page or site completely. The choice is yours, and the end result is a series of memorable Web links that will help drive that extra bit of traffic your way. Photo Credit: ©iStockphoto.com/stefan609201

Now Hiring: Product Marketing Managers for the AWS Team

Amazon Web Services Blog -

Are you interested in a job that lets you combine your technical skills with your marketing savvy and your desire to communicate? If so, the Product Marketing Manager position may be a great fit for you. You'll get to work directly with the teams behind the full range of AWS services, working with them to create high quality marketing deliverables that accurately describe the value propositions for their offerings. To learn more about this position, take a look at our new video, Product Marketing Opportunities at Amazon Web Services: In the video, several of my AWS colleagues talk about the Product Manager Manager role -- what they do and how it benefits our customers. You'll get a peek behind the scenes (and into the hallways) and see what it is like to work on the AWS Team. We are hiring for multiple positions within this job category. While the specifics will vary from role to role, the job description for Product Marketing Manager - Amazon EC2 should give you a pretty good idea of the responsibilities that you would have and qualifications that we are looking for. To apply, simply email your resume to pmm@amazon.com. If this is not quite the role for you, don't give up yet! We are doing a lot of hiring right now; check out the AWS Careers page for a full list of open positions. Perhaps one of them is right for you! -- Jeff;

Set up PayPal as Your Online Shop’s Payment Provider

1&1 Online Success Center -

When it comes to setting up your online shop, one of the first things you need to do is work out how your customers will pay you. There is a wide range of payment providers available, but one of the most popular is PayPal. First, it allows your customers to pay using credit or debit cards as well as via their own PayPal account. Choosing PayPal also gives your site brand recognition, as millions already use and trust PayPal with their own personal transactions, particularly when buying from a site like Ebay. There are also no monthly fees to pay when using PayPal as your payment provider – instead, you are charged per transaction. The standard rate for low-volume transactions is 30 cents plus 2.9% of each sale, but this can drop to 2.2% based on volume. It is also flexible – if you purchase a PayPal Here card reader and you can also take electronic payments physically, such as in a boutique or selling at a fair. Prices are even more competitive here – currently 2.7% per transaction when you swipe the customer’s card. How to Get the Account You Need You will need a PayPal Premier or Business account to accept credit card payments through your online shop. Each account works in the same way, but a Business account allows you to conduct transactions using your company name rather than your own. Either way, your first requirement is to verify your account by confirming your bank details or credit/debit card. Once your account is verified, upgrading to a Business account is simple (and free). Start by going to the PayPal upgrade page and logging into your account. Once you are set up and approved, you can then log into your shop’s back-end and choose the PayPal option. Enter your account details, and follow any other required instructions, and before you know it your shop will be up, running and able to take payments directly from your customers when they order through your site. Photo Credit: ©iStockphoto.com/farakos

When it’s a tech support issue in

Reseller Club Blog -

When it’s a tech support issue in question, 9 out of 10 times it’s actually resolved without any hassles. But all you ever hear about is the one time things went wrong. And since you do hear a lot about things going wrong, we thought we’ll tell you a little bit about what goes right as well. On a weekly basis, we’re going to introduce you to a member of our support team and tell you about the time they went above and beyond to help a client. Here’s our first edition of “The Extra Mile!” Our Support Executive: Sanjeet Singh Arora, a member of our support team, has been with us for about 2 years. Apart from these responsibilities, Sanjeet likes developing web applications and is quite good at it too. So apart from the above, he also works on tools that help the entire team with tasks they need to do. The Issue: Jorge Rodriguez Galarza, one of our resellers with a Reseller Linux Hosting package had installed an outdated version of WHMCS which infected the entire package with a virus. This led to several files getting corrupted, thereby making the admin as well as the customer panel inaccessible. The Complication: Important files required for the software to work could not be recovered. We later found out that the backup too was corrupted. Our Solution: As an obvious step, Sanjeet started by scanning all the files to remove the malicious code but some important files were not recoverable even after restoring the back up. Since a good amount of time had been lost and the hosting package was not completely restored, Sanjeet decided to involve his team and went out of his way to find a solution. The only viable option was a full WHMCS upgrade. Detailed steps were given to Jorge along with the files to update, but a new issue cropped up. While the upgrade was completed and the files replaced and the virus now gone, Jorge started facing an “Internal server error”. Sanjeet quickly escalated the issue to the SysAdmin team and they discovered that the WHMCS configuration selected by Jorge while the upgrade was being done was incorrect. They got the configuration fixed and restored the functionality of WHMCS back to normal. It was Sanjeet’s persistence and presence of mind that proved to be helpful and left Jorge absolutely satisfied and delighted! Here’s what Jorge has to say about our support – “I think I’ve been provided with a great solution and it’s a huge relief to have the WHMCS restored. All my data and admin and customer panel were at the risk of being washed off and Sanjeet has come to my rescue!” We can’t stress enough on the importance of using updated and latest versions of software. It can go a long way in avoiding most issues.

Search and Interact With Your Streaming Data Using Kinesis Connector to Elasticsearch

Amazon Web Services Blog -

My colleague Rahul Patil wrote a guest post to show you how to build an application that loads streaming data from Kinesis into an Elasticsearch cluster in real-time. -- Jeff; The Amazon Kinesis team is excited to release the Kinesis connector to Elasticsearch! Using the connector, developers can easily write an application that loads streaming data from Kinesis into an Elasticsearch cluster in real-time and reliably at scale. Elasticsearch is an open-source search and analytics engine. It indexes structured and unstructured data in real-time. Kibana is Elasticsearch's data visualization engine; it is used by dev-ops and business analysts to setup interactive dashboards. Data in an Elasticsearch cluster can also be accessed programmatically using RESTful API or application SDKs. You can use the CloudFormation template in our sample to quickly create an Elasticsearch cluster on Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2), fully managed by Auto Scaling. Wiring Kinesis, Elasticsearch, and Kibana Here's a block diagram to help you see how the pieces fit together: Using the new Kinesis Connector to Elasticsearch, you author an application to consume data from Kinesis Stream and index the data into an Elasticsearch cluster. You can transform, filter, and buffer records before emitting them to Elasticsearch. You can also finely tune Elasticsearch specific indexing operations to add fields like time to live, version number, type, and id on a per record basis. The flow of records is as illustrated in the diagram below. Note that you can also run the entire connector pipeline from within your Elasticsearch cluster using River. Getting Started Your code has the following duties: Set application specific configurations. Create and configure a KinesisConnectorPipeline with a Transformer, a Filter, a Buffer, and an Emitter. Create a KinesisConnectorExecutor that runs the pipeline continuously. All the above components come with a default implementation, which can easily be replaced with your custom logic. Configure the Connector Properties The sample comes with a .properties file and a configurator. There are many settings and you can leave most of them set to their default values. For example, the following settings will: Configure the connector to bulk load data into Elasticsearch only after you've collect at least 1000 records. Use the local Elasticsearch cluster endpoint for testing. bufferRecordCountLimit = 1000 elasticSearchEndpoint = localhost Implementing Pipeline Components In order to wire the Transformer, Filter, Buffer, and Emitter, your code must implement the IKinesisConnectorPipeline interface. public class ElasticSearchPipeline implements IKinesisConnectorPipeline<String,ElasticSearchObject> public IEmitter<ElasticSearchObject> getEmitter (KinesisConnectorConfiguration configuration) { return new ElasticSearchEmitter(configuration); } public IBuffer<String> getBuffer( KinesisConnectorConfiguration configuration) { return new BasicMemoryBuffer<String>(configuration); } public ITransformerBase <String, ElasticSearchObject> getTransformer (KinesisConnectorConfiguration configuration) { return new StringToElasticSearchTransformer(); } public IFilter<String> getFilter (KinesisConnectorConfiguration configuration) { return new AllPassFilter<String>(); } The following snippet implements the abstract factory method, indicating the pipeline you wish to use: public KinesisConnectorRecordProcessorFactory<String,ElasticSearchObject> getKinesisConnectorRecordProcessorFactory() { return new KinesisConnectorRecordProcessorFactory<String, ElasticSearchObject>(new ElasticSearchPipeline(), config); } Defining an Executor The following snippet defines a pipeline where the incoming Kinesis records are strings and outgoing records are an ElasticSearchObject: public class ElasticSearchExecutor extends KinesisConnectorExecutor<String,ElasticSearchObject> The following snippet implements the main method, creates the Executor and starts running it: public static void main(String[] args) { KinesisConnectorExecutor<String, ElasticSearchObject> executor = new ElasticSearchExecutor(configFile); executor.run(); } From here, make sure your AWS Credentials are provided correctly. Setup the project dependencies using ant setup. To run the app, use ant run and watch it go! All of the code is on GitHub, so you can get started immediately. Please post your questions and suggestions on the Kinesis Forum. Kinesis Client Library and Kinesis Connector Library When we launched Kinesis in November of 2013, we also introduced the Kinesis Client Library. You can use the client library to build applications that process streaming data. It will handle complex issues such as load-balancing of streaming data, coordination of distributed services, while adapting to changes in stream volume, all in a fault-tolerant manner. We know that many developers want to consume and process incoming streams using a variety of other AWS and non-AWS services. In order to meet this need, we released the Kinesis Connector Library late last year with support for Amazon DynamodB, Amazon Redshift, and Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3). We then followed up that with a Kinesis Storm Spout and Amazon EMR connector earlier this year. Today we are expanding the Kinesis Connector Library with support for Elasticsearch. -- Rahul and Adi

Football fans share their favorite game-day grub and gear

Oh, How Pinteresting! -

The football season is in full effect, so we cornered a few power Pinners who know a thing or two about passing around the pigskin, Oyl Miller and Bryan Houston. Get to know these football fanatics and find out their top picks for game-day gear and grub. Game-day gear: Oyl Miller’s must-haves Visit Andrew ‘Oyl’ Miller’s profile on Pinterest. Tokyo-based Oyl Miller is a senior creative and copywriter at Wieden+Kennedy with campaigns for Nike, PlayStation and Google under his belt. At night, after his kids go to bed, he works on personal art, writes screenplays, short films and the occasional thing for McSweeney’s. He’s also a big sports fan (and former baseball player) with Pinterest boards on everything from football to the digital sports zine Art of Competition that he writes, illustrates and curates. Here, he talks football and the game-day gear he can’t wait to score this season. If I could be any football player, I’d be… Deion Sanders back in the day. He had two killer nicknames “Neon Deion” and “Primetime.” AND he played baseball as well. Superstar in two sports? Yes please. My favorite football teams are… Seattle Seahawks and San Francisco 49ers On game day, I… Need massive quantities of guacamole and cheese related products. When my favorite team loses, I… Usually hide in a closet. If they’re getting blown out, I go for a run. The best way to watch the game is… In the stadium with a group of superfans who take the result as a matter of life and death. It’s great when a football crowd crosses over into a deleted scene from Braveheart. The coolest football gear this year is… The tech gadget I can’t put down is… My iPad. It’s at the center of everything I do. The campaign I worked on that I’m most proud of is… My favorite quote is… Game-day grub: Bryan Houston’s favorite football food Visit Bryan Houston’s profile on Pinterest. Next up, Bryan Houston. This born and bred Southerner has been on the sidelines as a radio and TV news sportscaster for the past five decades … I repeat, five decades. Hank Aaron, Joe Namath and Mary Lou Retton are just a few of the many sports legends he’s interviewed in his career. He’s an LSU football fanatic and a big supporter of high school football. When his head isn’t in the game, he enjoys photography, food and music (ask him to do his Neil Young impression). Here, he talks football and game-day grub sooo good it’ll make the crowd go wild. If I could be any football football player, I’d be… Peyton Manning. He’s a classy hall-of-famer. After his playing days are done, he has a bright future in broadcasting or coaching. My favorite football team is… The Dallas Cowboys, for reasons that escape me since 1998. When my favorite team loses, I… Slam my fist on the arm of easy chair and yell at the TV. My go-to game-day food is… Cajun I recently discovered and can’t get enough of… Stanley’s Famous Pit Bar-B-Q ribs The biggest crowd pleaser is… Gumbo I’d never think of skipping the… Pecan pie ………….. Want more football? We huddled up with ESPN to find a roster of ways to get you (and your whole team of family and friends) ready for the next big game—whether you’re tailgating or rooting from home. Check out these winning Pin Picks. What’s your Pinterest story? Don’t be shy—we’d love to hear from you.

Access Your Site’s Analytics on Your Smartphone with the 1&1 Insights App

1&1 Online Success Center -

You should already be familiar with 1&1’s SiteAnalytics tool, which gives you all kinds of useful information about the traffic that goes to your site: total and unique page views, which sections of your site are the most popular, where visitors come from, and so on. You can, of course, access this through your 1&1 Control Panel, but a different path is to install the free 1&1 Insights app for your Android or Apple phone. You can find this app by searching for “1&1 Insights” on the Google Play or Apple store. Once downloaded, open the app and then enter the domain and your 1&1 password to access stats for that site. Navigating the App Your key stats – page impressions, visits, most popular pages and traffic sources – are displayed on the left. Details for the currently selected stat are displayed on the right, centered around a line graph or pie chart – depending on the section you are looking at. You have a choice of three date periods to analyze – namely the past week, month, or year. If you are viewing page impressions or visits, you will see a scrollable list of impressions per day beneath the bar chart (or tap the bar chart itself to see when particular spikes occurred). Popular pages and traffic sources are split into pie charts, with each slice clearly labelled. Tap a “slice” of the pie chart to view more detailed statistics. And that’s it. 1&1 Insights is not designed to replace SiteAnalytics entirely – you will still want to access the site for more detailed statistics such as search engine and Web browser use, for example – but what it does offer is a quick and easy way to get at-a-glance data at the key performance stats for your site, which are updated in real time. If you want to quickly keep an eye on your site’s performance with a simple tap, 1&1 Insights is a great tool to add to your arsenal. Photo Credit: ©iStockphoto.com/ekinyalgin

ElastiCache T2 Support

Amazon Web Services Blog -

As you may already know, Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2)'s new T2 instance type provides a solid level of baseline performance and the ability to burst above the baseline as needed. As I wrote in my blog post, these instances are ideal for development, testing, and medium-traffic web sites. Today we are bringing the benefits of the T2 instance type to Amazon ElastiCache. The cache.t2.micro (555 megabytes of RAM), cache.t2.small (1.55 gigabytes of RAM), and cache.t2.medium (3.22 gigabytes of RAM) cache nodes feature the latest Intel Xeon processors running at up to 3.3 GHz. You can launch new cache nodes using the Memcached or Redis engines. T2 instances are supported only within an Amazon Virtual Private Cloud. The Redis Backup and Restore feature and the Redis AOF are not currently usable with the T2 instances. You can launch them in the usual ways (command line, API, CloudFormation, or Console): Pricing and Availability Pricing for T2 cache nodes starts at $0.008 per hour for Three Year Heavy Utilization Reserved Cache Nodes and $0.017 per hour for On-Demand Cache Nodes. (see the ElastiCache Pricing page for more information). As part of the AWS Free Tier, eligible AWS users have access to a cache.t2.micro instance for 750 hours per month at no charge. The new cache nodes are available today in all AWS Regions except AWS GovCloud (US) and you can start using them today! -- Jeff;

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