Social Media Feed

Embed Responsively

image from alistapart.comIllustration by

Anybody associated with the arena of web design even on the periphery as I am has heard about responsive design. The concept of designing a single web site that adapts (responds) to the devise it is being displayed upon. A time was that it was by analysing the stats of your visitors you could predict the most likely size of monitor and resolution being required and provide a selection of sites sized accordingly along with a client side query to determine the size expected and deliver pages in response to the query. Then there came mobile! At least that's how I understood it in my limited experience. I was down the rabbit hole! It was at this time I became aware of reciprocity, propinquity and normalisation. Coding a design could be rigidly and inflexibly set in tables with sliced up graphic elements with hotspots and links. These would 'explode' and 'break' displaying in what seemed like an arbitrary manner depending on your favoured browser. The separation of code and style enabled consistency and including a set of instructions to overwrite different browser margin defaults helped. The Cascading Style Sheet (CSS). I was an advocate for responsive as soon as it became a thing. I expect these 'zero default' style sheet addenda still exist and form the basis of secret design formulae many pure coders still closely guard. Its tricky to achieve... or things might have changed.

Web presence and the ability to create one was the objective of my web building education and as each element of building web sites became specialisms in their own right html, xhtml, CSS, asp, php, xml, javascript - these became distinct from the visual front interface which in turn developed its own special branches UDI (User Designed Interface), UXI (User Experience Interface) until being a master of all was an impossibility and engaging a professional was beyond the cost effectiveness of my needs, I turned to the very thing I loathed when I first begun my education. BYO (Build Your Own), drop and drag applications evolved into a necessary evil.

I remember the first drop and drag experiences within browser environments afforded by javascript and flash. The move away from passive unmovable pages with form fields the only interaction was the introduction of user experience integration. Whether that equated to 'engagement' is contentious, still being discussed. I could indeed go on but this post is Embed Responsively.

Many blogging platforms and BYO are now to a greater or lesser extent 'responsive' to varying degrees of success. It is an art. The transition through absolute and relative positioning to fully responsive adaptive web pages has been aesthetically essential to the seamless, cross platform, multi device user experience.

Returning the premise of this post ...web presence and the ability to create one being the objective of my web building education... left me forever needing to learn something new to keep up to date! I just want to gather resources and information for inclusion in one space with a link to share. Simple as! But...

Although BYO and Blogging platforms (the ones I use currently) offer responsive templates and elements, the media I gather from around the web and the media I create and upload are embedded using html code snippets, podcasts from Audioboom, audio interviews stored on Soundcloud, videos and playlists on YouTube, PDF documents published on ISSUU, presentation slide decks on Slideshare or Photo galleries from Flickr or Instagram they are traditionally fixed in size (height and width). 

Yes I'm getting to the point!

The straight copy and paste of these html embed snippets don't adapt to a responsive environment. I was overjoyed when I was introduced to embedresponsively.com - "It helps build responsive embed codes for embedding rich third-party media into responsive web pages." It was created and is maintained by @jeffehobbs based on research and work by Theirry Koblentz, Anders Andersen and Niklaus Gerber.

I love it, I wanted to share it - here it is! embedresponsively.com

Embedresponsively01anotated


Mapping the social media landscape for 2011: infographic | Econsultancy

I love info-graphics. This one caught my eye with its progressive stats which reflect my own social dilemma. As social media platforms integrate, the connection with an audience is made easier. Building the audience with consistency is as real as ever and not directly digital but the social media mechanics evolve in our digital lives for both personal and professional activity. Combined with public and private implications 2012 will be an intersting year.

Some of the most interesting highlights are below. Here, Dream Systems Media presents the must-know numbers from the biggest and best networks, based on AdAge data.

  • Auto-posting to Facebook decreases likes and comments by 70%
  • B2C Facebook results go up by 30% on Sundays
  • 34% of marketers have generated leads using Twitter and 20% have closed deals using Twitter
  • 55% of people access Twitter via their mobiles
  • 40% of bloggers consider themselves professionals
  • 20% of searched on Google each day have never been made before
  • 56% of college students said that if they were offered a job by a company that banned social media use, they’d turn it down

see the infographic for full details:

via econsultancy.com

 


Do startups need to hire social media experts? - Social Media

"I’m not going to talk about why startups should utilize social media and all that other basic stuff. Instead, I’ll focus more on the bottom line aspect of finding out what their purposes and agendas for using social media are, which is a prerequisite before even thinking of hiring a social media expert."

via thenextweb.com

I am very interested in the emerging attitudes to social media 'bringing in the best to be the best'.

Every 'Start Up' should include a social media 'expert' in the executive team or someone who knows someone who does and can bring them on board. You shouldn't 'hire', you should look to them to ignite a social media following from the start. The power of social networks is the following network connections. You have to have a social heart before being a social media 'expert' we make projects fly.

I'm uncomfortable with the term 'expert' when referring to social media, being good at social media is being a good communicator through the medium of digital.


The way I see it - part 2

Industry blogging, as a practitoner of social media it all gets a bit kalidascopic, inward looking.

I read about products, tools, services, platforms, people talking about those products, tools etc. Its the people talking about people I'm missing. I am not getting enough people stories, I'm interesting in personal practice. How do you used technology. When did technology stop being a tool to mastered but an entity to be absorbed? 'I know kunfoo' We know this brain dump matrix programimg of the brain is film fiction territory, But when did technology or items designated tech ie computers, games, phones enter your conscience and how did you assimilate that in to your world?

I found a photo recently of a time when 'tech' was not in my consciousness. I had an electric typewriter with floppy disc storage, the plastic square kind any how. Even then 'floppy 'disc' was a legacy word for a media type. There was Viynl, tape cassette, CD compact disc, dat tapes, minidisc and in the early 90's I still operated reel to reel tape! One thing in common, they are all storage mediums.

Original RM1 Holgate Road

My working life was since graduation in 1994 with a degree in Theatre, Design & Technology, full off Technology it wasn't realy thought off as tech'nology' it was technical equipment. When did that spark ignite, when was the alchemical moment when the technical equipment became tech 'nology'? Is it connected with awe?

Was it when everything became computerised? Was when switches stopped being flicked, perhaps? Button pressing, fade sliders, the triggering of a direct mechanical response or verbal actions. Noting has changed cues are stil being acted upon.

Now a computer button is so removed from the action ultimately executed metaphysically is wide, yet the digital process is tiny, so fast but for some reason that matters to me, to my brain. As a multi-tasker I think I have processing power envy!


The way I see it - part 1

l find blogging a frustrating experience.

It's a transfer mechanisms, a cross posting method. Getting the content out of my thought buffer / memory cache on to / in to a blog post in text form hurts my head.

I like my notebooks. I like writing.

Here is why.

When I type I have to think of the keys I hit, the letters, line forms, the symbols that placed together form words, those words are the code that when interpreted by you the reader will decode, translate in your brain as a representation of the content, my idea that I encoded in to the text based storage media.

The stored media becomes a collective archive. We can all reference the same meterial. How do we translate / decode the data and store / remember stuff? That cross reference with previous archived material dictates the knowledge and recall quality.

Now that was a revelation to me and fingers crossed, it is a pivotal moment for my social media practice. I don't want to struggle to express myself. It's a frustration experienced by many dyslexics.

I use Livescribe. This post was written in a digitally enabled notebook using a computerised pen. The written text was uploaded to my Mac and passed through a convert to text programme providing me with the editable text that formed the foundation of this blog post.

Livescribe is stationary when did technology depart from being stationary and office supplies in the sense of work tools?

The way my mind works the awareness of the barrier between thought and expression has to be encoded by me. Pen to paper is a form of hand coding, freeform lines and swirls revealing as the pen passes across the page like a printer head. Thoughts to expression at the tip and flip of a pen. It doesn't exhaust me.

 

IMG_2298

Mist, Rain, Zebra Print, Sharp Light,

IMG_2297

Unfiltered reality?

How do your notate your world for recall?

How do you share it with others?


Social Media in practice

As I adventure and explore the web new tools, services and web 2.0 platforms emerge, evolve and disappear. Some platforms become firm favorites while others get superseded. It may be that new services provide better features, new features or more aesthetically pleasing environments to work within. User experience is as important as an audiences. It may be the discovery of a new medium is easier to update or enhances the reach and distribution of content. Take this blog for example. I love the Typepad platform. It is contained and very stable, it is also well established. Since creating my first post back in 2007 it has had a purpose, to document my practice and journey. I want it to be about my practice, a place to share my findings and a place to evaluate my progress. This also means I intend it to be read by a certain audience, those who are interested in what I am doing or want to know what I'm up to as a practitioner. I've never wanted it to be a news feed or a revenue generator. I do however want it to reflect my activity across the entire landscape of social media. I want to aggregate my highs and lows, my challenges and celebrations. This is my showcase. But currently it is rather neglected. This is my reflection.

This blog should

  • Report my activities
  • Review my progress
  • Regale my milestones
  • Renew my thinking

This blog should aggregate my activity. As my last post was in August it is at present and resounding failure! Failure is not to be reviled but learnt from and resolved through self discovery. I know I need to formally blog more but I enjoy the adventure, I enjoy the exploration, I love to share.

Where is CJ on the web? The side columns collate some of that activity.

I love AudioBoo. Since getting my iPhone 4 this audio blogging service has released me for my terror of typing text. It has an embeddable widget and can be seen in the column on the right. I can also embed individual 'Boos' in to posts. This is my latest at the time of writing this post.

Audioboo produces excellent quality audio recordings with out having to worry about bad hair days! After recording hit the publish button, take a photo to accompany the post, add a title, some contextual tags even a twitter hashtag before finishing with the save & upload button. AudioBoo autoposts to Twitter so I can share my interviews and personal musings immediately with my Twitter followers. Adding an event hashtag pushes the media to the hashtag stream too. Brilliant. I hope you can see why I love this platform.

AudioBoo also autoposts to Posterous.

I love Posterous. Blogging with nothing more than an email address. It also has a neat iPhone app. The email subject line is the post's title, the body text in the email becomes the blog post content and audio, video and image files can be attached just as you would into an email. Hit send and hey presto you are published. I tend to post event audio and photos there. No great insights just a record of the event for friends who were unable to attend to listen to. Its quick and simple. Posterous content does not feed in to this blog.

Gregg Fraley talks to January's Second Wednesday crowd

The link above is my Posterous post of Photos, Audio captured with LiveScribe and an intoductory sentance to the Second Wednesday event I attended. Posterous has autoposting abilities but I select to cross post manually to Twitter preventing AudioBoo and Posterous making identicle posts. Social Media echos are just so annoying!


Doing business on social networks

via www.yourbusinesschannel.com

On your marks

I help businesses and organisations understand and implement social media bringing valuable new channels of communication and ways of operating a business by demystifying the world we call social media. Consulting a social media practitioner gets you started in a controlled and manageable manner building a foundation for growth.  Your Business Channel host of the video above have a web strategy channel. Part of a social media strategy is personal development. Web TV channel like these prepare the ground in many cases for you to peruse engaging a social media practitioner. You want to do that too. The question will then be how do they do that and how much would it cost. Explore the web, nurture curiosity in your competitors social media activity. Digital curtain twitching!

Get set

While helping others I also have to continue developing my own understanding and keep up with developments. This is where I envy businesses and I think businesses miss a trick when it comes to social media and technologies. A social media practitioner who you trust is a continuing asset. On a retainer they can guide you, advise you, inform you and help you maintain a sustainable social technologies infrastructure. Engaged for a project or strategy period they can open your eyes to a world of cost effective services, tools and platforms helping you embrace and integrate the advantages and steer from the pitfall. The key factor is you the business being proactive and learn all you can. If you finish your consultancy and no retainer is in place read their blogs, follow their twitter observe and engage. I love nothing more after a consultation period than to see tweets and updates its much like seeing a child take its first steps. Ask questions but don't be disappointed if you don't get personal responses after all you don't have a retainer. What you can do is influence the blog content.

GO!

I've been reflecting on a mantra from my business mentor Stuart Ross @topactioncoach on Twitter and the continued quest for knowledge and understanding and its application to my clients businesses diverts me from my own businesses infrastructure. To paraphrase - Are you working  ON your business or IN your business? A woods from the trees kind of rhetoric. Also..The definition of a successful business is one that doesn't need you to be their to function.

I'm continually trying to balance the ON and IN equation. Where are you at?


QR codes - in action. Your turn.

I've recently been including QR codes and their potential use within business to amplify Social Media. To connect offline media with online activity. Thought I'd share this on my blog.

The applications I use and recommend are:

Mobile BarCodes
http://www.mobile-barcodes.com/qr-code-generator
(for code generation, I use this one)
http://www.mobile-barcodes.com/qr-code-software
(for code generation, I use this also)

Kaywa
http://qrcode.kaywa.com (for generating codes)
http://reader.kaywa.com (for QR code reader)

The code reader I have installed on my phones is UpCode
http://www.mobile-barcodes.com/qr-code-software/#upcode

A pause for thought... when creating a QR code think about the value of the destination being accessed on a mobile devise. It should be a location directly relevant and information oriented for the user.  An article, a podcast, a video greeting an event or promotion code. For Creative Nottingham I'd suggest a QR code to the RSS feed http://www.creativenottingham.com/feed/atom or to a mobile optimised version of the Creative Nottingham site using Mippin Mobilizer http://www.mippinmaker.com

I've featured QR code potential in my presentation to BAFA (British Arts Festivals Association), E-business Club's Transitional ICT breakfast briefing around the East Midlands and for Creative Nottingham's social media introduction presentation based on the one day workshops I delivered to the FEU training (Federation of Entertainment Unions).

It's my objective to help business understand and leverage social media of all kinds. QR codes seem to has spiked great interest. For example on my business card I have to linking to a publication on ISSUU, Twitter for Beginners. 

T4B QRcode Get a code reader for your phone and try it. 

Let me know what you think? Useful?






23 June 2010 - Update... further pointers
This post was originally triggered by a presentation I delivered to Creative Nottingham and subsequently became a topic for discussion in their huddle network. I've blogged my initial pointers as thought they'd make an informative blog post. I added this to the discussion. Creative Nottingham's Susi O'neill created an optimised version of their web site as a result of the discussion.

"When including a QR on printed material I'd also consider the life span of the material. If it's going to be around for a while you might consider creating a QR code to a specific page you can edit containing links with the Mippin optimised version being top. This then becomes a mobile resource which you can update with out invalidating the QR code on the printed material.That would be solution if you add incentives at a later date as you suggested in your post.

Directing a QR code to the Mippin version would be dynamic of course as it would update when you added a post to the main site."


A year on - social media - Solutions for Business

Transitional ICT - Solutions for Business

It is always my objective with PCM creative to breakdown the huge umbrella term "social media" in to avenues of application rather than focusing on the gadgets, platforms, tools and services themselves.

"Don't add technology to the way you do things, change the way you do thinks when you know what the technology can do"

Over the past 2 years as my business, PCM creative has evolved from web design integrating social spaces, social networks, social platforms, tool and sharing services to an integrating social resources consultancy and media making service I've learnt as much from putting together the presentations, workshops and courses as the delegates I've delivered to.

It has altered the course of my business and provided me with tremendous opportunities and humbling network connections. It has enabled me to investigate the many facets and case studied business benefits social media affords hand on sharing the findings and experience of that journey with my clients as they begin there's.

This time last year I delivered a series of Breakfast Briefing for Business Link introducing the fundamentals of social media for business.

The reception was if I'm honest a little cold. I generated a murmur of interest. I was under scrutiny and encountered a lot of sceptics. Bottom line and ROI, metrics all of which were in their infancy. Not all the responses were negative and closed. I did make connections and started companies and organisations off on their own social media adventure. In most instances it was direction, focus on existing defined USPs and reassurance that the platforms they had stumbled upon, the ones bubbling up in the mainstream could be applied effectively to business. The ongoing dialogue was also important especially discussions on how their online networks were flourishing and sharing progress reports to develop a strategy going forward. More than anything this support ignited the development we later work on to emerge as projects or campaigns.

This time I aimed to expand on this further introducing the advanced such as Geo Locating mobile apps, QR codes and Flowtown. I'm finding curiosity and journeys that have begun and most encouragingly probing questions to get the most from the platforms rather than blind adoption.

Presentations across the East Midlands untill the end of June 2010