Here’s your dilemma, the boss has asked you to create a nice PR release to share an announcement with the World. You spend hours crafting a nicely worded release, double check the spelling, the grammar, and you fact check everything – now what? Well, you need to get the news out there. If you have a website you likely have a “News” section (if not then you have a blog), otherwise you need to make one FAST! Most important though, you need to distribute your release. Here’s where I’m going to share a HUGE secret of mine with you that will hopefully make your life easier (Note, ideally this advice is meant for any consultant or small business owner not interested in creating a newswire account on one of those wire services that charge several hundred$$ per release.
So, it may (or may not) surprise you that for the past few weeks I’ve been the happy user of a very sweet, and big, HP Z1 all in one workstation. This is courtesy of some new friends (and old HP fiends from Fort Collins, Colorado) from HP that I made at the ESRIUC last July who so graciously connected me with a demo unit to put through the paces.
For those of you not yet familiar with the “all in one” devices from HP, simply put, the Z1 is a very handy and powerful workstation that comes conveniently bundled in a single piece of hardware. The result is a powerful PC workstation that is fully configurable upon order and all the hardware is squeezed inside a package along with the monitor – the world’s first all in one workstation! Oh, did I mention it has a delicious 27″ screen?
You have a business… perhaps a bar, a coffee shop, or maybe a consulting firm. Regardless of the business type, if you have a brick and mortar presence then you need to get your business listed in some of the popular online location-based resources and search tools, particularly so the mobile app user can locate you, and with mobile outselling PCs big time its now even more important than ever to get listed! The following are 10 places you need to be listed:
Google is crucial for your business success online and having a good business listing with Google is also crucial. Get started with Google Places for Business where you can create an account, add your business, enhance your listings with information and photos. Be sure to also get your business a Google G+ place as well! http://www.google.ca/business/placesforbusiness/ or jump directly to add your place http://www.google.com/local/add/businessCenter
Need help with Google+ – See Get into Google+ –
Some useful tips here from Stephen Hannon as he picks on the topic of death by PowerPoint! We’ve all been there. An important customer meeting has finally been scheduled, and a presentation is needed. As usual, you feel there’s a lot of information to be communicated. The outline is rote. You have files upon files of other similar presentations. Simply pick a few charts from here, and a few more from there. Pretty soon, a deck of more than 30 slides is in place. The title chart just needs to be updated, and a bit of shuffling is required. The deck is dense with some graphics, an awful lot of words, and too-small font size. There’s not a prayer of fitting into the 60 minute slot. But, you’ve briefed the material umpteen times before, so you somehow convince yourself you can shave the metric to 45 seconds per chart, leaving plenty of time for discussion. Save, copy it to the memory stick, and off you go. It’s called “Death by PowerPoint” and we’ve all been guilty of it.
Given the choice, your audience will read and not listen
I bet you’ve noticed many of your neighbors have unsecured WiFI and I also guarantee to you that many of them have not altered the default settings on their routers as well! Google has a cool resource know as their Good to Know site, and they’ve also shared a fun video and blog on tips for securing your WiFi… handy stuff for work and home for many! See Securing your WiFi Network
You may have already seen this infographic making the rounds on various social media channels. The visual is a stunning look at all of the hydrographic features in America and indeed it is quite impressive. But what you may not have seen is what’s behind the scenes and how to make this webmap for yourself! The map was produced by Nelson Minar (@nelson) and he’s documented his experience in details on his blog, furthermore, the entire project and everything you need to know to create it for yourself is on Github
About the project… “This project contains everything you need from start to finish to make a vector based web map of American rivers in the contiguous 48 states. This demonstration map is neither particularly beautiful nor complex, but it is a complete example of how to build a web map using tiled vector data into a web map. The source code is open source you are encouraged to read and tinker with. There are three parts to the project: data preparation, HTTP serving of vector tiles, and clients that render maps”
There’s no arguing that OpenStreetMap (OSM) has exploded in use and popularity, heck, just look at the basemap layer options in any online web mapping services and you’ll see OSM as an option. Often considered the wikipedia of the mapping world, OSM is a fabulous basemap option for anyone and perhaps coolest of all, OSM has been built and maintained by you – the crowd!
I’m sure that many (if not most) of you have often wanted to mess around with OSM and add/edit some features but were a little lazy – I’m guilty! But now we have no excuse thanks to the new OpenStreetMap in-browser map editing tools available from the iD Editor (think HTML5)
Once completed you can share your edits via Twitter or facebook
This week a special Open Data Summit took place in Vancouver, B.C where about 120 government folk and stakeholders took part in the discussion around the topic of OpenGov and Open Data. In a report from the event, it was good to see that the topic of standards was quite important and discussed from the get go, also citing the success of the Google open transit feed data spec in helping to open and share data with the public – a nice summary of the event can be found on this blog. To follow up, a number of local communities are hosting open data events and hackathons this week-end – these as part of the International Open data Day http://opendataday.org/. Of note, the city of Victoria have just released new OpenData Catalog and the Province of BC has redesigned their OpenData resource at http://www.data.gov.bc.ca/.
Chances are good that if you happen to work in technology or you’re a consultant, that you may be working remotely or from a home-based office at some time soon – or perhaps you already do. If so, there’s loads of cool technology around these days that will make your life much simpler and make you more productive. The following are 10 gadgets and pieces of technology that I suggest for any remote worker. Here you’ll find tips about cables, wireless devices, cool hardware, useful cables, memory solutions and much more. See the feature HERE
The gang at CloverPoint in Victoria BC, Canada is doing some really cool stuff with facebook via their resource known as MapSocial. The latest addition to the service is a fun infographic building tool that lets users create a Social Graph of their friends based on location parameters harvested from their settings.
Users can quickly and easily connect to the service (through facebook) follow the prompts, and generate and share a fun visualization (infographic) to share with their friends. Here’s how it works:
- Go to App on https://www.facebook.com/MapSocial
- Click the Get Started Now button and begin creating your own infographic