Learn CSS3 From A – Z: RGBA and Gradients

Introduction

Even though CSS3 is not supported on all browsers yet, many web developer have started to use some of the techniques that it provides. CSS3 has evolved into a technology which, when combined with HTML5 and JavaScript, may end up being a Flash-killer. In this series of articles, we will cover the key additions to CSS3. In the previous article, we learned about selectors in CSS3; and today we will look at backgrounds.

RGBA

As a web developer, I am sure you know what RGB means. Red Green Blue. The three base colors that combine to give us all the other colors that we use in digital form. You can either define colors in hexadecimal format (#RRGGBB) or in numeric form – rgb(x,y,z). Thats nice, but what happens when you want to make an element see-through? In other words you want to drop the opacity of the element. One straight-forward solution to do that would be define the opacity property of the element.

Below is a screenshot of what we get when we use the opacity property.

Click here to see a working example of the above code.

Do you see the problem? Opacity sets the opacity value for an element and all of its children. This makes the text in the div also transparent – something we did not intend.

To resolve this problem, CSS3 has introduced a new method that allows you to define the Alpha-channel of a color. It sets the opacity value only for that specific declaration.

Below is the screenshot of the same example above but this time we have used the alpha transparency value instead of the opacity value.

Note: In the above example, I have set the color of the background using the rgba color model. It can be used anywhere that you are specifying the color. Another interesting use of this is when you have a caption over an image and you want the text to get highlighted when the user hovers the image, you can switch from setting the opacity to setting the alpha channel.

Gradients

One of the aesthetically pleasing patterns to the eye is a gradient. Radial or linear, they can also be used to draw the user’s attention to a particular area. Until some time ago, we had to use images if we wanted to have gradients on our site. The problems with that are evident, so I won’t go into them. CSS3 resolved it by allowing us to create linear and radial gradients. If you need other types of gradients, then you will probably still have to use images.

Linear Gradient
Gradients are not the simplest of properties in CSS, but they are definitely one of the most attractive of them introduced in CSS3. There are several values that you need to specify and it will only worsen when you see radial gradients.

Webkit browsers have a slightly different syntax, but they take the same parameters. Internet Explorer users, you will have to wait till your viewers move to IE 10 to be able to use this feature.

Here is a screenshot of what the above code renders.

Click here to see a working example of the above code.

Radial Gradient
Similar to linear gradient, we can also render radial gradient on some browsers. So far, only Mozilla and Webkit browsers support radial gradients. Given the limited browser support, a lot of web developers chose to continue using images for radial gradients. The styles for radial gradient are quite tricky and I resort trial and error until I get what I want.

Click here to see a working example of the above code.

Below is the code to generate the radial gradient.

Conclusion

So that covers the article on the RGBA color model and gradients in CSS3. While gradients might seem a little complicated, they are extremely useful for web development. The new color model also helps reduce markup and makes the code more semantic when you want to have slightly transparent backgrounds.

Article source: http://www.htmlgoodies.com/html5/css/learn-css3-from-a-z-rgba-and-gradients.html

Syrian authorities ‘committed crimes’ against civilians


Crowd stand around words saying 'ARMING FREE ARMY'

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The UN secretary general has described the assault on the Syrian city of Homs as “atrocious”, accusing the government of systematically attacking its own people

The Syrian authorities have committed clear and widespread crimes against the country’s civilian population, the UN secretary general has said.

In an address to the General Assembly, Ban Ki-moon said the international community had failed in its duty, and inaction had encouraged Syria’s leaders in their repression of civilians.

But he said further militarisation of the opposition was not the answer.

He spoke as the Red Cross waited to get access to a bombed-out part of Homs.

The ICRC said it had been refused permission to deliver aid to the Baba Amr district, which has suffered heavy bombardment by government forces in recent weeks, despite getting the go-ahead from the authorities on Friday morning.

ICRC President Jakob Kellenberger said the hold-up was “unacceptable”.

The rebel Free Syrian Army (FSA) said on Thursday it was leaving the district in a “tactical withdrawal”.

On Friday the UN human rights office said it had received reports of a “particularly grisly set of summary executions” of 17 people in Homs.

Meanwhile Paul Conroy, a Sunday Times photographer who fled Syria after being wounded in Homs, told the BBC that what was happening in Baba Amr was “systematic slaughter”.

Two French journalists caught up in the shelling and smuggled out of Homs into Lebanon have been flown back to a military airport outside Paris.


Ban Ki-moon

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Ban Ki-moon: “We continue to receive grisly reports of summary executions, arbitrary detentions and torture”

Edith Bouvier and William Daniels were met on arrival by President Nicolas Sarkozy.

Ms Bouvier was badly injured in the bombardment of a makeshift media centre last week, in which two other journalists were killed.

She was stretchered off the plane and is set to undergo surgery on Friday evening for multiple leg fractures.

The bodies of the two dead journalists, Marie Colvin of Britain’s Sunday Times and French photojournalist Remi Ochlik, have arrived in Damascus and are expected to be returned home.

‘Virulent rhetoric’

Mr Ban said it was time for the international community to speak with one voice.

“Continued division emboldens the Syrian authorities in their violent path,” he said.

“Continued delay in the humanitarian effort causes more human suffering. Continued violence on the ground risks descent into full civil war and sectarian strife that could haunt the country for generations to come.”

He blamed the Syrian authorities for creating an armed conflict.

“The disproportionate use of force by Syrian authorities has driven what had been largely peaceful opposition forces to resort to take up arms in some cases,” he said.

“The images which we have seen in Syria are atrocious. It’s totally unacceptable, intolerable. How, as a human being, can you bear this situation?”

The Syrian ambassador to the UN, Bashar Jaafari, accused Mr Ban of being misinformed, and using “extremely virulent rhetoric which confines itself to slandering a government based on reports, opinions or hearsay”.

He said opposition fighters had been using civilians as human shields in Homs.

But Mr Ban said the international community should insist that Syria give humanitarian workers in Homs access to Baba Amr.

Jakob Kellenberger said in a statement that the seven-lorry aid convoy carrying food, medicine and blankets, along with ambulances from the Syrian Red Crescent, would stay in Homs overnight in the hope of entering the devastated district “in the very near future”.

“It is unacceptable that people who have been in need of emergency assistance for weeks have still not received any help,” he said.


Paul Conroy speaks in hospital to Newsnight's Gavin Esler.

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Paul Conroy: “We left behind what I fear is going to be the next Rwanda, the next Srebrenica.”

The statement added that the Syrian authorities had earlier given a “green light” for the convoy to enter, and that the problem was not a technical hitch but something more serious.

The convoy had also been hoping to evacuate the wounded.

Of the 100,000 people who normally live there only a few thousand remain, with the FSA saying it had pulled back to save those still there from an all-out assault.

Many of those still in the district are without power and running low on basic supplies. The ICRC has said it fears there could be many seriously wounded people there.

The delay has given rise to opposition allegations that government forces were removing evidence of summary killings.

Activists spoke of revenge killings in an agricultural area outside Homs, and the summary killing of 10 people behind a local co-operative building.

The opposition Local Co-ordination Committees reported that in Syria as a whole 56 people had died on Friday, of which 32 were killed in Homs and 16 in the nearby town of Rastan.

The UN estimates more than 7,500 people have died in the 11-month anti-government uprising in Syria.

‘Systematic slaughter’

Mr Conroy, who was smuggled out of Syria into Lebanon on Tuesday, described the scenes in Homs from his hospital bed in the UK.

“I’ve done a fair few wars, I’ve never seen anything on this level,” he said.

“There are no targets, it’s pure systematic slaughter of a civilian population.”

Spaniard Javier Espinosa, who also escaped, described his flight as part of a group of 50 people who crept through the government lines at night.

“There were a group of kids who were terrified… we tried to just shut [quieten] them down … but it was too late and they [government troops] started shooting, so we had to run for our life… to hide,” he told the BBC.

“I guess there were some people who died.”

Map of Homs

Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-17242412

Brightcove: Hybrid HTML5/Native Development Wins The Day

With superfluous “over talk” of cloud services obscuring our view of the command line and the application-centric issues affecting developers, it is refreshing to find some discussion of programmers’ challenges amongst the quagmire. Cloud content services company Brightcove says that a hybrid application development approach embracing both native and HTML5 technologies is key to developer success in the current climate.

Brightcove’s VP of technology Ashley Streb says that for cross-platform, content-centric apps, this approach saves both time and money as native apps are most easily distributed through big brand app stores, while browser-based apps have no formal distribution channels.

In terms of ease of development, Streb says that HTML5 wins for content-related tasks, as it’s easier to format content using HTML and CSS instead of using native iOS or Android libraries. He asserts that there is no comparison between the complexity of creating a table view in iOS and the simplicity of creating a list of things in HTML.

Attempting to position his company’s Brightcove App Cloud platform and accompanying SDK as something of a panacea here, Streb writes on his blog, “Since App Cloud apps are native apps, they can be distributed through app stores. Development in App Cloud requires no compilation step and no complex tooling like XCode or the Android Developer Tools. App Cloud compiles apps in the cloud.”

Drawing further points of juxtaposition here, Streb suggests that browser-based apps are forbidden from accessing certain device capabilities like the camera and address book (for obvious security reasons). These restrictions make it hard or even impossible to develop features like photo sharing and offline storage. Once again, native wins the day. Similarly, native application development may win when it comes to monetization, as developers don’t have to build their own billing systems and users don’t have to reenter their payment information with each purchase.

HTML5 may have the edge when it comes to speed of iteration and overall development; the “walled gardens” of native platforms could make it costly to reach the widest possible audience, but web technologies have no boundaries.

“HTML, CSS, and JavaScript are eminently reusable across platforms, so web developers don’t need to throw away their bag of tricks when coming to hybrid apps. In fact, developers can use popular libraries and frameworks like jQuery. And code created in App Cloud can be repurposed for mobile-optimized websites and touch web apps,” said Streb.

Clearly Brightcove’s Streb is on hand at every positive and negative here to suggest that his company’s wares can competently straddle the plus points of both native and HTML5-based development. Marketing messages aside, his words do perhaps suggest some interesting pointers for developers trying to analyze how they should best balance the power of native platforms with the economies of the Web: open standards, wide adoption, and lower barriers to entry.

Article source: http://drdobbs.com/cloud/232601966

Is Java ready for HTML5?

Every new Apple mobile device and MacBook supports the latest HTML5 standard. Some of the biggest
social networking sites, including Facebook, already use HTML5 in their content delivery. But
senior Java application developers must still ask the question: Is the Java community ready for
HTML5 development and integration efforts?

HTML5 is improving end-user experience by helping to provide more interactive content directly
through the Web browser, simplifying rich content delivery and reducing the importance of
proprietary technologies such as Adobe Flash and Microsoft’s Silverlight. In the rich content
space, the only pure Java solution offered by Oracle would be JavaFX,
which can be seen as both interoperable with HTML5 and also threatened by it.

At JavaOne in September of 2011, Cameron
Purdy and Adam Messinger unveiled Project Avatar
in an effort to help simplify the task of
developing applications that leverage HTML5 technologies. “You can make an HTML5 client work with a
Java back-end today, but it’s not that fun, it’s not that easy to use, and it’s not that easy for
HTML folks to collaborate with Java folks,” says Adam Messinger with regards to the current state
of HTML5 development with standard Java technologies.

Sadly, since the announcement, Adam Messinger has moved away from his position as vice president
of Fusion Middleware at Oracle to work as Twitter’s vice president of Infrastructure Engineering.
It has been six months after the first unveiling of Avatar, and there is very little mention of the
project on Oracle’s website.

Of course, others in the Java community would argue that Java is in fact well prepared for HTML5
integration. For most enterprise applications, Java does its work on the server side, pushing
content out to the Web client. This content is normally void of any reference to the fact that it
was generated from byte-code running on a JVM. A model-view-controller approach to application
development means that the Web layer (the view) should be developed in isolation from the control,
data and business logic, which is written in Java.

With a separate Web layer, the job of moving from
HTML4 to HTML5
is just a matter of throwing the Web developers into a training course or two,
upgrading their development skills to include the new HTML5
features
and having them begin writing code that takes advantage of things such as the HTML5
canvas
, sliders and video. But as much as the Java community tries to believe that their
application are designed with complete separation between view and logic layers, the fact is, many
Web rendering technologies do indeed map quite tightly to the HTML4 specification.

For example, JavaServer Faces (JSF), the Java EE standard for the development of the UI layer
for Web-based applications incorporates a variety of tags that map directly to the HTML4
specification. This tight coupling raises concerns that JSF may be forced into the HTML4 pigeonhole
until a new version of the standard is released. But some experts expect the transition from HTML4
to HTML5 will be more quick and easy for JSF developers than they may expect.

Getting JSF ready for HTML5

The JSF specification separates its own logic and rendering layers, which means that simply
replacing the renderer associated with a given JSF component allows for the adoption of new
standards.

According to Max Katz, author of Practical RichFaces and the lead RIA strategist at Exadel about
JSF and HTML5, “Changing to HTML5 is very simple, you just change the renderers. You update them –
not even change. It’s not like we’ve replaced HTML5 as a completely new thing; it’s not. So you
just update the renderers to include the HTML5 tags and it’s a perfect match. And I believe for
JSF2.x they’re discussing supporting HTML5 tags. If you look at the rich component libraries,
that’s even easier for them because they’re not specifically tied to the implementation. They can
just update their components with HTML5 tags and functionality and you’re done.”

Furthermore, JSF was designed for infinite flexibility and customizability, and as such, it’s
not surprising to see that many position documents already exist demonstrating how HTML5
drag-and-drop and inline editing capabilities can be embedded within a JSF component.

Of course, there does need to be motivation and impetus behind the people maintaining a given
Java framework or project in order for someone to actually get the work done with regards to
updating the code base in a timely manner. That’s why the health of the project and the activity of
the contributor base is always an important consideration when choosing a framework. Application
framework expert and Founder of AppFuse, Matt Raible, seems to be encouraged by active Web
frameworks like Tapestry, along with their ability to keep up with HTML5.

 “The project health, I think, is important because if the framework isn’t maintained and
it’s not improving, then chances are you’re not going to like it in the long term. And you can see
this with some frameworks today, for instance, Tapestry,” says Raible. “I’ve started using Tapestry
more and more, and you can see that project is focusing on a lot of the client-side capabilities
and HTML5 stuff that’s coming out.  And that’s exciting, versus other frameworks that are kind
of ignoring HTML5 and not really enhancing themselves for it. “

Java the technology is prepared in a variety of different ways for the
adoption of HTML5 based technologies
. If you’ve been developing in a way that embraces a
Model-View-Controller design philosophy, then upgrading your view components to use new tags and
attributes should be no harder than opening a JavaServer Page in a text editor and typing away. And
if you’re using an active and healthy framework like Tapestry of JSF, the contributors and
maintainers are already infusing those projects with HTM5 features.

How much time passes before we start to see HTML5 become more prevalent in applications
developed by Java professionals will be decided by how motivated users will be in demanding the
latest HTML5 based features in their applications and how quickly the Java development community
can embrace the changes HTML5 has to offer.

Article source: http://www.theserverside.com/news/2240146307/Is-Java-ready-for-HTML5

Hudson police log, Feb. 28 – March 2

Hudson

Tuesday, Feb. 28

7:14 a.m. Manning St. MVA with property damage.

10:49 a.m. Washington St. Drug law violation.

11:24 a.m. Arrested, Barbara J. Taber, 53, of 28 Houghton St., Hudson, on possession of Class B with intent to distribute, uttering a false prescription, conspiracy to violate controlled substance laws.

2:31 p.m. Tower St. TRO harassment violation.

3:22 p.m. Brigham St. Suspicious activity.

5:06 p.m. Marlboro St. Burglary.

10:07 p.m. Tower St. Medical.

Wednesday, Feb. 29

12:43 a.m. Old Bolton Rd. Medical.

Thursday, March 1

7:14 a.m. Reed Rd. MVA with property damage.

7:52 p.m. Coolidge St. MVA with property damage.

12:29 p.m. Fort Meadow Dr. Medical.

12:29 p.m. Washington St. Forgery/counterfeit.

2:58 p.m. River St. Larceny.

4:59 p.m. Forest Ave. MVA with property.

6:12 p.m. Brigham St. MVA with property damage.

7:04 p.m. Broad St. Annoying phone calls.

10:04 p.m. Washington St. MVA with personal injury.

Friday, March 2

1:17 a.m. River St. Medical.

8:57 a.m. Wilkins St. MVA with property damage.

The information from the police log is obtained directly from the official records maintained at each police station in our circulation area. It contains arrests and samplings of police activity. Those arrested are innocent until proven guilty. The Community Advocate will publish news of acquittals upon notification and a copy of court-issued documentation.

Short URL: http://www.communityadvocate.com/?p=18902

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on Mar 2 2012. Filed under This Just In.
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Article source: http://www.communityadvocate.com/2012/03/02/hudson-police-log-feb-28-march-2/

PHP 5.4 aspires to elegance

IDG News Service - PHP, one of the most widely used languages for building websites, has been updated with a number of improvements to ease development and speed performance.

“Essentially, most of the new features don’t radically change the language, just refine it,” said Zeev Suraski, one of the principal contributors to PHP as well as CTO of PHP software vendor Zend Technologies. “What you could do before, you can do in an easier, more elegant way now.”

For developers, the PHP syntax has been streamlined for easier usability. A new method, called Traits, will enable developers to reuse code. The array syntax has been simplified. Improvements have been added to allow PHP work better with the JSON (JavaScript Object Notation) data exchange format. PHP 5.4 includes native support for Asian languages, eliminating the need for programmers to compile a special version of PHP to present content in those languages.

Much work has also been done on this version PHP to improve performance. Thanks to some code refactoring, PHP can now support up to 40 percent more users on the same server. “We’ve reduced memory consumption. When you have a popular Web site, it’s all about density–how many requests per second can your server take. Typically the real limiter is memory. By reducing memory consumption, you can increase density,” Suraski said

PHP is used by approximately 5 million developers around the world, primarily for building Web pages with content that is routinely updated or changed, as well as for building Web applications. It is the sixth most widely used programming language worldwide, according to the most recent monthly estimate by the Tiobe Group.

In conjunction with this release, Zend also has released the third beta version of Zend Framework 2, which includes support for PHP 5.4. Zend is also testing a PHP hosted service, called the Zend Developer Cloud.

Joab Jackson covers enterprise software and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Follow Joab on Twitter at @Joab_Jackson. Joab’s e-mail address is Joab_Jackson@idg.com

Article source: http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9224837/PHP_5.4_aspires_to_elegance?taxonomyId=11

Mozilla’s Boot 2 Gecko and why it could change the world

‘Android is not open source.’

That’s what Mozilla’s Director of Research Andreas Gal thinks of Google’s purportedly ‘open source’ mobile operating system. In Gal’s view Google’s platform is no different from Apple’s iOS. The entire platform – including its design, development, and direction – is ‘dominated by Google.’

According to Gal, ‘Google makes all of the technological decisions behind closed doors and pushes them outwards. You may or may not get a look at the source after the device comes out. But it’s certainly not open. And in this sense it’s no different from Apple’s platform, except that maybe sometimes you get access to the source.’

And this is where Mozilla comes into the equation. Boot 2 Gecko is based solely on HTML5, JavaScript and CSS and is completely open source. Mozilla doesn’t even keep a ‘physical’ copy of the source code in its offices – everything to do with the platform is available online for all to see. 

Brendan Eich, Mozilla’s co-founder (and the inventor of JavaScript), told Know Your Mobile that the days of native shells (iOS/Android) and proprietary software (Objective-C) could soon be over as Mozilla continues to standardise and implement Open Web APIs that will one day eradicate the need for separate platforms, allowing users to find and use apps on their mobiles without having to opt into a privately owned platform.

‘Separate platforms are no longer necessary once you have the correct standardisation and inter-operation,’ said Eich.

Apple’s iOS, Microsoft’s Windows Phone, RIM’s BlackBerry OS 10 and Google’s Android operating systems are all ‘walled gardens,’ according to Gal, meaning that all of the above are in it for one reason: to make money.

‘Google builds Android not for your benefit but for Google’s benefit, and the shareholders it has to satisfy. This is the same with Apple,’ said Gal. He added: ‘Mozilla is very different – we are a non-profit organisation. In the past Mozilla was all about making the web better. But now people are going to mobile, so we’re following them there.’

‘What we’ve developed [with B2G] is a completely open stack that is 100 per cent free. We have a publicly visible repository and all the development happens in the open. We use completely open standards and there’s no propriety software or technology involved.’

So what is Mozilla getting at here? Simple: dump the standard smartphone operating system, forget Apple and Google, and embrace the freedom of pure HTML5.

Gal tells us that because the B2G stack is based on HTML5 there are literally millions of developers out there that know how to create content for the platform. There will also be plenty of opportunities for developers to make money from their creations as well, according to Gal.

Google and Mozilla have developed technology that lets web developers manifest their entire site, including payment methods, into an icon that can be placed on a B2G device’s homescreen.

But all this, Gal tells us, is still work in progress. Boot 2 Gecko is still in its embryonic stages at present – but the ball has certainly begun rolling.

‘We’re working with operators to create an easy way for customers to pay for content,’ said Gal. ‘Mobile users want to go to a store, discover content and pay for it easily. We’re working on making this a reality inside B2G via personal identity systems.’

Persona, featuring BrowserID, is one such personal identity system. Persona lets users use their email address and a single password to sign in or buy materials and media. Mozilla demoed Persona at MWC 2012.

‘You own your applications. You own your data and you have the power to take them wherever you like,’ said Eich. ‘And this will be dependent on things like Persona, which is the most secure and safe password free sign-on and the identity providers don’t see all of your details like they would with Facebook Connect, for instance.’

He added: ‘the end result is an “unwalled garden” where you’re free to move around without being forced into opting fully into one platform.’

But what’s most impressive about B2G is how well it runs on low-end hardware. During our meeting with Gal and Eich, we got a demo of B2G running incredibly smoothly on a $60 handset with a 600Mhz CPU and just 128MB of RAM. Gaming, web browsing, video and typing were all seamless.

Gal also confirmed that Qualcomm is partnering with Mozilla on its B2G project.

B2G is based on the same web-rendering engine as Mozilla’s Firefox browser, meaning that it is extremely lightweight when compared to Android and iOS. For this reason getting smartphone-level performance out of a budget mobile handset suddenly becomes a reality.

‘There are so many opportunities for technology like this [B2G] in emerging countries. What people are looking for there is a solid smartphone experience – browsing, web browsing and applications – at a decent price point. Users’ in India, for instance, cannot afford Google’s quad-core devices but they could afford a $60 HTML5-powered B2G handset.’

‘Google’s Android platform is too hardware dependent,’ says Gal. ‘Android 4.0 demands 512MB of RAM as a minimum for instance. Mozilla’s web stack allows OEMs to produce $60 handsets with smartphone-like performance,’ said Gal.

He added: ‘But of course if you add in extra hardware for higher tier phones, the performance will only get better.’

Here’s a video of Boot 2 Gecko in action below:

 

Article source: http://www.knowyourmobile.com/features/1267951/mozillas_boot_2_gecko_and_why_it_could_change_the_world.html

Mozilla’s Boot to Gecko smartphone OS review: first look

Mozilla announced last year that it was developing its very own mobile OS, but Mobile World Congress gave us our first chance to see it running on real phone hardware.

Dubbed Boot to Gecko, Mozilla’s attempt at taking on the giants of the mobile world is open source, with a kernel based on Linux and a front-end mainly written in HTML5 and JavaScript.

We were shown the software running on a Samsung Galaxy SII, and we were impressed by its responsiveness. The sideways-scrolling homescreen, which looks like a cross between Windows Phone and iOS, was whipping by with hardly a pause, and its large, square launch icons look colourful and attractive.

The OS will boot from cold to the lock screen in around six seconds, and Mozilla is claiming the small footprint of the OS is already leading to encouraging battery life figures. We were also shown the phone functions and contacts app working and a hardware-accelerated 3D demo based on WebGL.

Boot to Gecko will, of course, have its own app store, with all the apps written in HTML 5 and JavaScript, and multiple payment options available, including PayPal. Intriguingly, however, these apps will be cross platform and the implications of this are far-reaching. With any HTML5-compatible browser able to run apps developed for the Mozilla OS, it opens up the prospect of eventually being able to move from platform to platform without having to buy a whole new load of software.

The interesting thing is that this will work in the other direction. On the Samsung demo unit we were shown, one of the homescreen icons linked to Microsoft’s HTML5 version of Cut the Rope. It didn’t run entirely smoothly, but it did play and worked well as an illustration of where the future for smarphones might lie. Mozilla sees a future free from today’s walled gardens, and that’s something we applaud.

So, when are we  going to be able to get our hands on the first Boot to Gecko smartphone? Well, it’s a fair way off commercial availability yet. Spanish mobile phone network Telefónica is collaborating with Mozilla on a device that’s set to hit the market at the back end of 2012, and it will inevitably take some time to trickle out to other countries. Mozilla’s strategy is to continue in that vein, so the first smartphones to arrive in the UK are likely to be branded as T-Mobile, Orange, Three, O2 or Vodafone handsets.

The good news, however, is anyone with enough technical nous can download the front end and try it out in a browser. Head off to GitHub if you’re interested, but before you do take a look at the embedded video above for a flavour of what to expect.

Article source: http://www.pcpro.co.uk/blogs/2012/03/02/mozillas-boot-to-gecko-mobile-os-review-first-look/

My TV and Me

Today, I spoke at the Digital TV Group (DTG) Summit in London. For those who don’t know, the DTG is the industry association for digital television in the UK, so I was keen to share my thoughts with them about how “Connected” or “Smart” TVs fit with our strategy, their huge potential in the future, but also the real need to improve today’s audience experience on these devices.

The aim of my presentation was to convince the group that if connected TV is going to be successful with mainstream audiences, using a connected TV needs to be no more complicated than channel flipping. And I firmly believe that this is achievable; that there’s no reason connected TV can’t be that simple to use.

Making connected TV simple requires focus and dedication to delivering on behalf of all audiences. It requires making experiences that flow elegantly and naturally from broadcast TV.

People buy TVs first and foremost so they can watch great programmes, so connected TV experiences need to focus on making those experiences better. With 98% of BBC viewing time spent on linear television, it follows that connected TV experiences should start with broadcast TV.

We’re seeing huge growth of BBC iPlayer on Connected TVs – not surprising as TV is of course best on TV. But at the moment iPlayer gets four times as much traffic on the Apple iPad alone, despite the fact there are more than twice as many connected TVs as iPads in the UK .

We know there’s an appetite out there for Connected TVs. In the last year, iPlayer on the PC grew by 14%. On the tablet, iPlayer grew an impressive 580%. But on the TV, iPlayer grew more than 10-fold.

It’s early days, and there’s far more we can do to make connected TV deliver the fullness of its potential to our audiences, but the trend is inspiring.

Today when we change channels we don’t think about the technology that lies beneath. But when we use a connected TV, we do. For connected TV to truly delight audiences in the future – to build on the last year’s impressive growth – using a connected TV needs to be dead simple. To delight audiences with what connected TV makes possible, we need to make the technology disappear.

That’s one reason why Red Button services are so successful. Their simplicity is no accident; it follows years of experimentation.

In a connected world, the Red Button can transform into an effortless way to bring what we traditionally think of as Internet services directly to our audience, right on the TV. Users need not even realise that behind the scenes, they’ve switched between broadcast and broadband technologies.

And this is great news for the roughly 25% of Red Button users who don’t use the BBC’s online services.

Simply tune into any BBC channel, press Red, and immerse yourself in enhancements around the programme you’re watching. It will be joined up with broadcast TV, not separate from it. It will combine the breadth of our online content with the simplicity of television.

If you’re interested in more from me, you can watch my presentation (above). As always, keen to hear your thoughts.

Daniel Danker is General Manager, Programmes On-Demand

Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/bbcinternet/2012/03/red_button_connect_tv_simple.html

Jury: Portsmouth officer not liable in shooting death – The Virginian

NORFOLK

A federal court jury ruled in favor of a Portsmouth police officer, finding that he acted reasonably when he shot and killed a man last year in Olde Towne.

The jury returned its verdict in favor of Officer Stephen D. Rankin late Thursday after hearing three days of testimony.

Rankin said at the trial that he shot at Kirill Denyakin in April last year because he felt threated as Denyakin charged at him and refused to take his hand out of his pants. Denyakin died at the scene.

Denyakin’s family accused Rankin of using excessive force.

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For more details, return to PilotOnline.com later and read tomorrow’s Virginian-Pilot.

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DOCUMENTS | Kirill Denyakin shooting

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Article source: http://hamptonroads.com/2012/03/jury-portsmouth-officer-not-liable-shooting-death

PHP 5.4 Aspires to Elegance

PHP, one of the most widely used languages for building websites, has been updated with a number of improvements to ease development and speed performance.

“Essentially, most of the new features don’t radically change the language, just refine it,” said Zeev Suraski, one of the principal contributors to PHP as well as CTO of PHP software vendor Zend Technologies. “What you could do before, you can do in an easier, more elegant way now.”

For developers, the PHP syntax has been streamlined for easier usability. A new method, called Traits, will enable developers to reuse code. The array syntax has been simplified. Improvements have been added to allow PHP work better with the JSON (JavaScript Object Notation) data exchange format. PHP 5.4 includes native support for Asian languages, eliminating the need for programmers to compile a special version of PHP to present content in those languages.

Much work has also been done on this version PHP to improve performance. Thanks to some code refactoring, PHP can now support up to 40 percent more users on the same server. “We’ve reduced memory consumption. When you have a popular Web site, it’s all about density–how many requests per second can your server take. Typically the real limiter is memory. By reducing memory consumption, you can increase density,” Suraski said

PHP is used by approximately 5 million developers around the world, primarily for building Web pages with content that is routinely updated or changed, as well as for building Web applications. It is the sixth most widely used programming language worldwide, according to the most recent monthly estimate by the Tiobe Group.

In conjunction with this release, Zend also has released the third beta version of Zend Framework 2, which includes support for PHP 5.4. Zend is also testing a PHP hosted service, called the Zend Developer Cloud.

Joab Jackson covers enterprise software and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Follow Joab on Twitter at @Joab_Jackson. Joab’s e-mail address is Joab_Jackson@idg.com

Article source: http://www.pcworld.com/businesscenter/article/251165/php_54_aspires_to_elegance.html

HigherVisibility Named Eleventh Best Web Design Company by topseos.com for …

The independent authority on Search vendors, topseos.com, has named HigherVisibility the eleventh best web design company for March 2012.

(PRWEB) March 02, 2012

The independent authority on Search vendors, topseos.com, has released their list of the best web design companies providing services to the online marketing industry for the month of March 2012. As a result of the meticulous evaluation process, topseos.com has named HigherVisibility the eleventh best web design firm due to their ability to create creative, professional, and unique website designs. The companies which topseos.com evaluates and ranks are web design companies who cater to companies looking to not only achieve a professional look but to improve their organic search as well.

HigherVisibility provides online marketing services alongside their website design to businesses looking to improve or expand their marketing initiatives. In addition to being a top web design company, topseos.com has also recognized HigherVisibility as a top SEO and PPC company due to their history of results and customer satisfaction. Their process for creating unique and effective websites involves a full service approach to SEO, landing page optimization, and creating a visually stimulating and effective user experience beyond that of a simple website design.

The process of evaluating the best web design companies in the industry involves the use of a set of evaluation criteria, customer references, and comparisons to competitors in the space. Five areas of evaluation are used to obtain insight on the processes and procedures of each web design company for a more in-depth evaluation. The five areas of evaluation include navigation, consistency, download times, compliant code, and visual appeal.

To further supplement the results of the evaluation, customer references are obtained in order to connect with individuals who have received and utilized the web design services of each online marketing agency which we evaluate. Customer references for HigherVisibility have indicated a strong process for creating a visual design strategy and implanting the strategy effectively. The results of the designs have led to increased conversions and revenue for their customers.

topseos.com evaluates the best in the online marketing industry. HigherVisibility has proven their ability to provide professional website designs as a high performance website design firm.

ABOUT topseos.com

topseos.com is a well-known independent authority on search vendors. Established in 2002, the goal of topseos.com is to recognize and rank those individuals or companies providing the best online marketing services all over the world. A specialized team of researchers examine thousands of applicants each month who are seeking to be ranked as a top internet marketing service provider by the independent authority. This website is being visited daily by thousands of visitors all over the world looking for the best services available. The website also provides various types of facilities other than the independent rankings which provide useful information to customers and providers of online marketing services.

For the list of the best website design companies visit:

http://www.topseos.com/rankings-of-best-web-design-companies

For more information about HigherVisibility visit:

http://highervisibility.topseos.com/

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For the original version on PRWeb visit: http://www.prweb.com/releases/prweb2012/3/prweb9244545.htm

 

Article source: http://www.timesunion.com/business/press-releases/article/HigherVisibility-Named-Eleventh-Best-Web-Design-3376237.php

Administration of Website Services

You could review a website administration if you have a little business or an individual that has a little business and don’t have a moment to watch your site. Website administration firms manage the regular aspects of handling and controlling websites. Here are some of the lists of the responsibilities but are not narrowed too:

Habitual system inspection
Weekly Documents and Database Assistance
Refurbishing of website software and Composition
Auditing website for dead-links and restoring
Expanding of streamers and or associate networks
Expanding and Constructing image galleries
Uploading your photos to your site
Creating PHP mail list for your Newsletters
Expanding the details of your site
Forwarding your Newsletters with PHP mail list
Informing you of void members emails
Introducing account for your site
Assigned IP address
Affixing a chat-room
Affixing Conferences or Discussion Board
Periodically outsourcing your website is more economical than appointing a full-time agent to run the daily operations. Website administration firms can have countless patrons that they are arranged to administer their websites, so their costs to each firms are much inexpensive than having to provide an employee allowances and favors.
Current marketplace for genius website administrators is very difficult to look for, most of the firms are not established inside the United States. It can once in a while be more valuable for a tiny business or individual established in the USA to look for a reliable administrative company established in the US to administer their website. You will obtain the hands on and the consideration to particulars that your site demands, along with a company established in the US is only a ring away from communicating to the actual persons that are pursuing your site for you.
Thank you viewing our document, we intend to assisting you in the future. We are present for you if you have some queries, please feel free to inquire.

 

Juniorn Web Designer

Company

A leading online retailer is looking for a graphic designer to join its successful online team.

Job Purpose
Creating sale imagery and creating fresh editorial image modules for use onsite and within emails. Aslo uploading sale imagery and content to the site supporting the team with picture research. Further to this you will be responsible in re-sizing and editing product photos.
Key Responsibilities

Day to day you will work alongside the ecommerce manager and marketing team in the design and production of all online advertising. Including preparation of images in photo-shop and final pdf. creation. Experience of creating email and web based applications, as well as assisting the online designer in preparation of banner and home page graphics in Photoshop, Flash and HTML/CSS.

The Person

You must be a conceptual web designer full of ideas, able to creatively interpret a brief within corporate guidelines. In addition you must be a good problem solver able to work intuitively arrive at a clear and cohesive design strategy and a team player who enjoys working with like-minded people. To be successful you must have experience at a mid weight level and a proven track record in web design. Also experience of email design for the web and a portfolio brimming with excellent work.

Article source: http://www.questsearch.co.uk/jobs/q87685_juniorn-web-designer

Just another WordPress.com site

Hello world!

Welcome to WordPress.com. After you read this, you should delete and write your own post, with a new title above. Or hit Add New on the left (of the admin dashboard) to start a fresh post. Here are some suggestions for your first post. You can find new ideas for what to blog about by [...]

Read more

Article source: http://manitoumessenger.com/2012/03/

Consultwebs.com-Designed Law Firm Website Wins LMA Midwest’s “Best Website” Award

law firm web design, law firm website design, law firm Web marketing, online legal marketing, lawyer Internet marketing, legal marketing, best website, law firm website provider

Consultwebs.com CEO President Dale Tincher

We believe this award reflects our company’s commitment to providing our law firm clients with attractive, professional and informative Web designs that allow them to reach their goals.

Raleigh, NC (PRWEB) March 02, 2012

Nationally recognized law firm website provider Consultwebs.com, Inc., is pleased to announce that its website for the Chicago personal injury lawyers of Salvi, Schostok Pritchard P.C. has been voted “Best Website” by the Legal Marketing Association Midwest Chapter.

The Consultwebs.com-designed website, http://www.illinois-accidentlawyers.com, features a clean, user-friendly design that allows visitors to easily access its wealth of information about Illinois accidents and the legal rights and options of victims and their families.

The Chicago personal injury firm received the “Best Website” award February 29 at the LMA Midwest Your Honor Awards banquet. The awards honor Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Missouri and Wisconsin law firms and legal organizations “who have set new standards for innovation” in legal marketing.

“We’re very excited for Salvi, Schostok Pritchard P.C. and honored that the firm has received this distinguished award from the LMA Midwest Chapter,” said Dale Tincher, a veteran law firm Web marketing consultant and CEO and President of Consultwebs.com.

“We believe this award reflects our company’s commitment to providing our law firm clients with attractive, professional and informative Web designs that allow them to reach their goals.”

To view the Consultwebs.com portfolio of law firm website designs, please visit the company’s website.

About Consultwebs.com, Inc.

Since its founding in 1999, Consultwebs.com, Inc., has built a reputation for being a national leader in law firm Web marketing. Consultwebs.com provides law firm Web marketing consultation and strategy and a wide array of products and services, including website audits, website design, website hosting, website domains, law firm reputation management, search-engine optimization (SEO) marketing, pay-per-click (PPC) services, Internet systems setup, website editorial and content services (including substantive content, press releases, legal blogs, satellite sites and law firm videos), online chat products, social media marketing (including Facebook, Twitter and Google+), call tracking and legal directories.

Consultwebs.com has offices in Berea, Kentucky, and Raleigh, North Carolina, and works with law firms across the country. For more information, call Tanner Jones at (800) 872-6590 or (859) 353-7720 or use the convenient Consultwebs.com online contact form.


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Article source: http://www.prweb.com/releases/law-firm-website-design/best-website-award/prweb9246754.htm

Bucs Add Special Teams Coordinator, Two More Assistants

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are nearing the completion of their coaching staff. New head coach Greg Schiano has reached out to Rutgers once again to grab two more assistant coaches, according to NewJersey.com. A Rutgers official confirmed the report.

Rutgers special teams coordinator Phil Galiano has been hired by Tampa Bay and will fill that same role with the Buccaneers. Rutgers graduate assistant Andrew Janocko, who helped out with Rutgers offense last year, has been hired to serve as the Buccaneers offensive quality control coach.

The hiring of Galiano and Janocko brings the total number of Rutgers assistants that have followed head coach Greg Schiano to Tampa Bay to six, including wide receivers coach P.J. Fleck, tight ends coach Brian Angelichio, assistant defensive backs coach Jeff Hafley and linebackers coach Bob Fraser.

According to the NJ.com report, Schiano also hired longtime Rutgers associate athletic director Kevin MacConnell to serve as his director of operations.

Columbia’s website is reporting that recently hired offensive coordinator Ben McDaniels has left to join the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as an offensive assistant. McDaniels, who is the brother of Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels, is believed to be hired to be Tampa Bay’s quarterbacks coach, but PewterReport.com could not confirm that.

Article source: http://www.pewterreport.com/index.php?option=com_k2&Itemid=20&view=item&layout=item&id=7809

Ludei’s CocoonJS enables blazing-fast HTML5 mobile games (exclusive)

As the lingua franca for the web, HTML5 is becoming the format for choice for making cross-platform apps. But when it comes to games, HTML5 apps run too slow. So Ludei, a San Francisco company with a team in Spain, is launching a new platform to turn the HTML5 games into blazing fast applications that take advantage of the graphics hardware in mobile devices.

Making HTML5 games run fast is important because it will simplify life for game developers. Right now, they have to use valuable resources either creating cross-platform but slow games or fast native apps that have to be rewritten for each new platform.

“We manage to get much better performance for games in a browser,” said Eneko Knorr, chief executive and founder of Ludei. “But we aren’t forcing anyone to learn custom code. You can port games to iOS and Android without losing performance.”

The free tool can be used to quickly port HTML5 games so that they run on the iPhone and Android devices as if they were native code, or specially written to take advantage of every piece of hardware in the mobile device, such as its graphics chip. Many HTML5 games run in a mobile browser that does not take advantage of native hardware. Consequently, they run at a speed of 15 frames per second or so. But CocoonJS games can reach more than 100 frames per second, resulting in much smoother gameplay and fluid 3D animations.

Other companies such as GameClosure do this, but some of them use a special applications programming interface. Sibblingz’s Spaceport converts Flash games to run on mobile devices. By contrast, developers who use CocoonJS don’t have to learn how to code in a new way. It does not require a new API. Knorr says that the current technologies that support HTML5 games add a layer of complexity for the developer to learn.

The CocoonJS is a hybrid solution that blends HTML5, CSS and JavaScript. It uses OpenGL libraries to take advantage of the native hardware. Ludei is announcing a public beta and a new CocoonJS Launcher for iOS and Android developers so they can test how their game works in CocoonJS. Knorr says that implementing CocoonJS is as simple as zipping a folder. Ludei plans to monetize using ad networks and in-app purchases.

“We use HTML5 with the graphics support of OpenGL to get the performance,” Knorr said. “Developers do not need to use a proprietary API or SDK.”

One of the customers is Appoint Solutions, a Dutch developer of mobile and web apps. That company used CocoonJS to create the MonsterMove mobile game. Robert Boreman, co-founder of the company, said his team used the platform to run HTML5 games at a speed of about 50 frames per second without any code changes.

Ludei, which has offices in San Francisco and Bilbao, Spain, created its own successful native mobile games iBasket and Slide Soccer. Those games have been downloaded more than 15 million times. The company is self-funded by Knorr, who previously sold a web hosting company to Telefonica four years ago. The team has 17 people.

Here’s a video of how CocoonJS works.

Article source: http://venturebeat.com/2012/03/02/ludeis-cocoonjs-enables-blazing-fast-html5-mobile-games-exclusive/

Entrepreneur: Huebris helps businesses with Web design, social media, Internet … – The Birmingham News

Joshua Creed Gilmer.JPGBirmingham-native Joshua Creed Gilmer, 27, posing at Railroad Park, began running Huebris, a Web design and social media marketing company, full time in January 2011. (The Birmingham News/Tamika Moore)

BIRMINGHAM, Alabama — Joshua Creed Gilmer considers himself part of a new breed of young entrepreneurs who are embracing the Internet and social media.

The 27-year-old Birmingham native began running Huebris, a Web design and social media marketing company, full time in January 2011 after obtaining his master’s degree in entertainment business from Full Sail University in Orlando. Besides designing and upgrading Web sites, Gilmer helps companies across the South develop an effective social media strategy and get the most out of their presence on sites like Twitter and Facebook.

Huebris has three employees, including Gilmer. The firm has 13 clients ranging from an oil industry company in Texas to On Tap Sports Cafe and Diamonds Direct in Birmingham.

“When it comes to social media, we help companies use it to build their brands,” Gilmer said. “Your brand no longer is what you say it is anymore. Now thanks to social media, it’s what other people are saying about you on Facebook and Twitter. Some companies try to build their brand on social media alone, while others turn to companies like us who can engage with the public for them and help lead the conversation.”

Gilmer said businesses should move beyond having a website, long considered a rule for successful marketing of goods and services.

“Today, you now should be on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube — maybe more,” Gilmer said. “We’re looking outside the box at Pinterest, FourSquare, Tumblr, StumbleUpon and more.”

The entrepreneur’

Gilmer earned his first degree in computer animation from Full Sail University, a liberal arts college, in September 2008, when the U.S. recession was near its low point.

Despite the economic climate and having chosen a difficult career, Gilmer got a job at Today’s Class in Birmingham, helping the company constructing what he calls “cloud computing” programs.

“It was good for me to see how a small technology business operated, and it gave me the confidence that I could run my own. In a small business, all the pressure is on you to perform; there is nobody else,” Gilmer said.

The idea

In November 2008, while still working at Today’s Class, Gilmer got the idea to start Huebris, a web-design and social media consulting company. He kept the company on the back burner, deciding to return to graduate school first before putting full-effort into running a business.

“I wanted more knowledge of the business side of my industry,” Gilmer said. “Full Sail is often touted as the Harvard of media arts colleges, so there was no question where I would continue my journey. Their entertainment business masters offered a different kind of confidence. I already knew that I could do the work, now I knew that I could protect it and grow.”

During graduate school, Gilmer interned at Birmingham’s Kinetic Communications as a project management apprentice. After graduate school, Gilmer began running Huebris full time.

“The Internet is a rapidly evolving place,” Gilmer said. “Huebris is a company that wants to see its clients keep up in the digital evolution. Social media one of the directions company’s should be looking; mobile marketing is another.”

The challenges

Part of the problem is getting clients to understand what Huebris does. He said most companies know that social media can help grow their business, but don’t understand how.

“On the surface, it may appear that we post updates to these social networks on their behalf,” Gilmer said. “What we really do is tantamount to social media warfare. We’re battling other brands for their audience’s attention. We engage with fans, spark conversations, moderating chatter and more. That’s just with our social media management service. In web design we talk about WordPress as a content management system a lot.”

Gilmer said he used his own savings to start the business. He declined to divulge start-up costs.

The plan

To keep costs down, Huebris operates using a virtual studio, allowing Gilmer via his laptop computer, smartphone and iPad to take business on the road to clients’ work sites. He has business partnerships with fellow Full Sail alumni in Orlando, Los Angeles, and Houston, and is looking to expand even more through online services such as Basecamp, DocuSign, and Freshbooks. He hopes to get brick-and-mortar office soon, but is focusing on growing the business first.

To build his client base, Gilmer is seeking to expand his social media management service by paying a commission to sales reps looking to earn extra money by helping him get new clients. He is also continuing to focus on education to stay abreast of the rapidly changing world of technology.

“That’s the biggest key, and one of the best things that college taught me–to never stop learning,” Gilmer said. “You definitely can’t afford to fall behind in this industry. We just went to WordCamp Birmingham for that specific intent. Well, that and networking with Birmingham’s best and brightest.

Gilmer also hopes to use his training as a computer animator to build a video game production business in Birmingham.

Join the conversation by clicking to comment or email Williams at rwilliams@bhamnews.com.

Article source: http://blog.al.com/businessnews/2012/03/huebris_helps_businesses_with.html

Aldershot boss Dean Holdsworth told BBC Surrey:

Npower League Two

    Coverage: BBC Sport website, BBC Radio 5 live, BBC local radio, Final Score highlights on The Football League Show

    Continue reading the main story

    Match details to follow.

    VIEWS FROM THE TRAINING GROUND

    Aldershot boss Dean Holdsworth told BBC Surrey:

    “When you look at the fixtures coming up, we’re going to need everybody. I will change it to freshen it up.


    Dean Holdsworth

    Please turn on JavaScript. Media requires JavaScript to play.

    “I’ve learnt a lot in the last five months of this season. The players know what I’m expecting and they’re doing very well.

    “It’s about maintaining that concentration and professionalism. Winning games isn’t always about the best football team. It’s about the team that understands how to win.

    “The players should be proud of the new club record we’ve achieved (five wins in a row in the Football League). It can only breed confidence for the team.”

    Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/17163001