Window Design Pressures for New and Replacement Windows

New Building Codes change the industry:

The ever increasing demands of new building codes has significantly changed window and door design pressure ratings required for replacement windows, doors and sliding glass doors. This is especially true in wind-prone areas such as Florida. Not only are design pressures an important lifesaving issue for the everyday homeowner but they are critical for every high rise condo in over 4 stories. What’s the issue? As the elevations of a building increase, the design pressures go up dramatically.

In addition to the elevation, the location of the window (corner versus middle of the building) may quadruple the pressures effects. For safety reasons, all impact windows and doors for these applications must meet newly updated and enhanced air, water and structural design performance requirements. Many Home Owner Associations (HOA), Property Management companies and even replacement window companies are not familiar with the older codes let alone the new ones. As many people do when anything changes, some may consider these new Replacement Window Design Pressures to be over-kill, however. In reality one hit from flying debris or winds from even a modest tropical storm may destroy your windows and compromise the integrity of your home.

Design Pressures:

The easiest way to explain Window Design Pressure is to take a walk through downtown Chicago. Picture yourself walking down a street on a typical Chicago winters day. On just about any street you will encounter some amount of wind but once you turn that corner, the gusts of wind can literally knock you off your feet. Tropical storms and hurricanes are no different in their wind gusts dramatically exaggerating the winds pressure and its effects on the designs of a building.

Likewise when it comes to high-rise condos the wind speeds and wind pressures are even more pronounced due to the surrounding trees, buildings and higher floor elevations. Similar in effect to the wind passing over an airplane wing (Bernoulli’s Principle), these natural and man-made structures can generate negative air pressures that can lift or in this case suck windows and doors right out of the wall. Can you imagine what could happen if you were behind a window that gets sucked out at 150 mph? In some cases the winds can reach up to a staggering 300 mph or higher.

Choosing the right window and door for the application:

For high-rise condos, Single Hung Windows, Double Hung Windows, Casement Windows, Picture Windows and Sliding Glass Doors are available that are designed to meet and in most cases exceed regional and county design pressure codes. It is important to note that all windows and doors are NOT created equal. Finding a window dealer and installer who is experienced in dealing with design pressures is paramount. A reputable company can explain and help the homeowner to choose the right window and door product for their particular application.

High-Rise Condominiums:

Compliant window manufacturers have announced two major design pressure rating changes on Double Hung windows. Approved Double Hung window sizes now exceed a structural design pressure 40 rating, with most of them above a design pressure 45, and many reaching a design pressure 50 rating. These performance enhancements were made possible by modifications to the tilt latch, which now pulls the sash even more tightly towards the jamb. End result for you the homeowner, a greater energy efficient, quieter and more secure window.

Impact Windows:

The design pressure ratings on approved window lines – including single hung, double hung, transoms and picture window units – are also increasing. However approximately only 10% of the window and door products currently manufactured have been upgraded to meet the increased design pressure ratings. In order to meet these higher design pressure ratings, tested windows and doors were required to meet three (3) specific sets of criteria related to air, water and structural performance.

Air: The glass was required to show no evidence of air leakage around the weather strip or corner joints when installed in a 25 mph wind tunnel.

Water: Unit must withstand eight inches of rain per hour, driven by wind speeds of 55 mph.

Structural: Unit must remain structurally sound under 142 mph of wind pressure.

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Reasons for Making Mobile Marketing Your Priority

In the marketing arena, marketers are always on the lookout for great things that will keep them ahead of their competitors in the market. You do not have to worry anymore because the solution lies in your purse or the pocket. We are living in an era where mobile marketing is bringing forth a tremendous opportunity for marketers to a greater level. Cell phones help the marketer to reach wider audiences in real time and on a personal level, which is a different engagement you cannot find in other communication channels.

Significance of Mobile Marketing to Businesses

According to the recent most statistics, almost all customers own a mobile device. Seventy percent of the customers have a mobile phone, seventy-five percent own a laptop, and fifty-five percent own a tablet. At least seventy percent of this population uses their mobile devices for accessing the internet and not the laptop. With an increase in the population of smartphone users, the number of devices in the world exceeds the current population.

Using the mobile device is the most viable option, and marketers need to make adjustments towards this medium as many users possess these devices. The extensive use of mobile devices among customers is a growing and crucial part of the market. It helps in unlocking the potential held in the massive, captive, expanding, and engaged audience.

Nowadays, many companies are taking the full advantage of this option as it is the new thing in the market. In case your brand is not in mobile marketing, you need to make sure that you get a bandwagon as your competitor will leave you behind. Below are some reasons as to why businesses have to give priority to mobile marketing.

i. Social media offers a platform for adverts

Twitter, Facebook, and other platforms have understood the potential that resides in mobile marketing. They have recognized this potential and have evolved their adverts platforms for you to target mobile customers efficiently. All you need to do is clicking a button to start. This change will take a few minutes if you use social media marketing.

ii. Mobile Advertising Reaches New and Broad Audiences

The number people who are using mobile advertising exclusively are increasing. If your business is not using mobile advertising, then you are not going to reach your target audience and potential customers.

iii. Retailers are Getting Mobile Arrangements Wrongly

The news around nowadays shows how retailers are struggling to keep their profit margins high as a result of poor returns. Most retailers have taken their employees and shareholders by surprise in recent years because of a massive decrease in sales and net profits. Such companies view mobile marketing and e-commerce as an option when they are planning their budget. However, despite the vast opportunities the channel gives, the retailers struggle in investing in mobile marketing which makes them fall into the rat race of dwindling sales and profits.

iv. Mobile Devices are Growing Online Growth

With improving internet infrastructure and escalating smartphone penetration in the world, mobile devices have become a primary method that consumers use as a gateway to accessing the internet. Recent research shows that internet access by use of smartphones is a daily action for more than 83% of all users in the world.

v. Google Advice Retailers to Use Mobile Marketing

The main reason that will make you start mobile advertising is the Google Mobilegeddon update which penalizes websites which have not begun to put mobile marketing into consideration. Your site has to be easy to browse and responsive on mobile devices. In simple terms, your site will get a slap from Google by going down in the search engine ranks. These penalties are getting stricter with time, and your company has to take necessary measures before feeling the impact.

vi. It is Personal

It is hard to get brand close to the audiences when you are doing it behind a computer. Using mobile devices is however different. These devices are special accessories which people carry along at all times. They provide a different physical aspect as compared to other media.

This form of marketing is personalized because it allows retailers get closer to consumers. You will have a high chance of converting these people into high-paying customers. For now, mobile marketing is in the market to stay, and researchers say that it will be gaining momentum as time goes. Businesses and firms that are waiting will find it hard to get on board making them spend a lot of money.

vii. You Have the Chance Of Hitting Them Time and Again

In case your strategy is targeting desktops, you need to put in mind that there is a possibility that your audience is also using mobile devices. Therefore, it might take a few attempts to reach and resonate with customers. In case you miss the laptop chance, use the smartphone to get him/her and convert the viewer.

viii. It is Getting Costlier With Time

Facebook advertising is the best example when looking at what might happen in the event an advertising method has grown in popularity. Costs have continued rising in the recent past for no good reason. However, you might attribute it to the increase in the market competition.

The mobile marketing space is similar; you will have to engage it now or later. It is advisable to do it now because tasting costs are quite affordable than wait for the future when you will have to break the bank before gaining any return.

ix. Mobile Advertising Opens Up Possibilities and Virtual Realities

Including exciting technologies such as virtual reality will make mobile ads more useful and engaging. The vast options show that it is easy to make a profit from this channel. Therefore, you need to understand that there exists an opportunity for all businesses in all industries.



Want To Share News? Tune In To LinkedIn!

Whenever we look for news what are the sources we turn to? Magazines, newspapers, publications are some sources whereas we often rely on our friends and colleagues to tell us the stuff to read. For instance, if you are a sportsman you will be looking for news on pitching machines or where you can get a pitching machine in reasonable price. Knowing each other’s interest, sharing is quite possible within a friend circle. LinkedIn understands your needs; therefore, it facilitated sharing of news. Get a glimpse of how news can be shared on LinkedIn and exactly how you can personalize it.

Privacy Control

It solely depends on you whether you want your news to be accessed by everyone, a single individual, a group or just your contacts. While sharing information, you can set a privacy control. This customizable feature is the first thing a user searches for. At times, we don’t want some information to go public. That’s where privacy settings are essential.

Option To Add Images & Article Excerpts

In case you have added images or some extracts from articles, news or blogs, there are greater chances of your shared extracts being clicked. This brings credibility to the news and after customizing it looks great. This newly added option to LinkedIn makes users switch for this source in order to keep up with the latest.

Review Your Posts

This new added feature allows you to go through what you have written and correct all typos. Surely you do not want anyone pointing out mistakes or errors in your status message. Also at times there are messages you wish to edit after getting a change of mind. This feature allows you to preview and make any necessary changes.

Ease Of Re-sharing

At times, you read someone’s post and like it to pass it in your niche. Now, you no longer need to search for the sourcing, re-sharing some information is just a click away. Here again you have the option to make the information visible to some individual, in share it in your group.

Enhanced Off-site Sharing

Even off-site sharing is not much different. For instance, when you visit some popular news sites, you can easily share them at LinkedIn. So when you come across any popular news page the next time, do not forget to share it on LinkedIn.


When you re-share an article, it will give you credit. However, you can get credit when you attribute something you have re-shared to the person who has initially shared it with you.

Share Items Through Profile

You have the choice to make some selected items appear publicly. What this implies is that you can allow your profile viewers to learn about you and your interests. Sharing news through your profile will keep your content fresh and relevant.

By now, you may have an idea how LinkedIn help you remain current and updated. Moreover, it allows you to share news with your friends who always look up to you. Besides sharing news, you will help your contacts get the news they have been looking for. If you wish to check out this new feature you have learned just go on to publish this very post.



How to Make Use of Google Trends

To put it simple and straight, “Google trends” is a form of data provided by Google itself. This data represents the most searched topics on internet in a particular span of time. Google trends has been used in many ways by a number of website owners to increase their website traffic. If you are also a website owner, you can use Google trends to increase your website traffic too. But how does it work?

Using Google trends to increase website traffic is very easy.

The time you spend working on search engine optimization to increase your website traffic is very tiring. Though, SEO is a long term solution to get the targeted traffic but trends will get you the traffic on the same day for a particular term or topic. Simply use the hot trends.

If you are not aware how it works, you might think how to use hot trends for increasing traffic? This service works the best for news websites. This service can change your traffic statistics for once and for all. You simply need to select a topic from Google trends and start writing on it. As soon as you publish your article on your website, you will see an increase in the traffic of your website. You can always check your website’s traffic via Google analytics. Moreover, once you publish the post, it is highly recommended to submit the post to maximum number of social networks. You might be thinking why to do that? The reason is that Google bot consecutively visits the social networks, while it may take time to crawl your website. Once your article is available on the social networks it will mean your article is crawled. And once the article is crawled on time it will be available for the readers. It is important to perform all these steps in a speedy and uninterrupted manner. Once you decide to write an article you must make sure that you post in the same hour. Again do not forget to submit the post to social networks.



From “Just History” to Student-Centered Time Travel

Graduate work in history was all that was needed when I began teaching at a university in 1968. Education courses were not essential because standing in front of students and lecturing was what any successful graduate student could do, or so we thought.

My perspective changed as I taught about one hundred students the first term. Making a point of getting to know each student, I saw that many of them lacked writing and study skills needed to succeed in a history course. Colleagues noticed when I handed out reading and writing tips and then counseled struggling students. My office-mate expressed concern, saying my job was to teach history, not other subjects. When my radical behavior persisted, the head of the department said I was hired to “teach history, just history.”

Today, my students at Georgia Gwinnett College have tutoring and counseling services free of charge. Each fall semester, faculty must adjust to upgrades in classroom technology and to the learning management system. Through a Center for Teaching Excellence, we learn about new educational practices for improving student engagement and can seek help using classroom technology. While keeping up with scholarship in history, I am also expected to uphold institution-wide goals for engaging and retaining students who also must achieve high performance standards.

This college teaching environment, as I approach the end of a professional career, is the most invigorating and enjoyable of my life. The belief in teaching “just history” has yielded to revolutionary innovations in teaching and in the field of history itself – both of which are personally satisfying.

I share with colleagues of all disciplines many values based on the educational environment of our institution. However, my approach to teaching “more than history” takes a direction somewhat different from many of them by emphasizing skills expected of professionals today. Among historians there are also varying opinions on the best approaches for studying history. I differ from some colleagues by viewing all history as both contemporary and world history; and arguing that science and history should be taught in combination by interdisciplinary teams to ground students in a more holistic view of life.

Professional Skills

Survey history courses that orient students to fundamental knowledge need to also develop essential skills for citizenship and the demands of most professions. Students today need to seek and interpret reliable evidence, a skill which the election of 2016 made even more imperative for those who get their news from social media. They also must learn basic habits and proficiencies required of professionals today.

Contrary to the expectation of many students, history is not just committing important dates, events, and people to memory. Learning the importance of evidence and how it should be interpreted is essential for building values and skills of citizenship. Understanding that historical accounts take many forms (books, newspapers, magazines, websites, and social media), and to look for documented evidence (valid primary and secondary sources) with accurate and responsible interpretations, is an increasingly important skill. Students today live in a world deluged with audio, video, graphic, and written content over the Internet, some of which comes from tainted sources such as terrorist groups or foreign powers wanting to destabilize our government. Using rational analysis to filter out unreliable information is becoming ever more difficult. The Internet is a great educational tool – but it is equally useful for radicalizing people vulnerable to emotion, propaganda, and misinformation.

For me, an enjoyable part of being a historian is recognizing the role played by interpretation. Specialists in a field differ on fine points of interpretation because of the evidence they select and how they arrange it. The same kind of debate occurs in political media.

When I was in college in the 1960s, televised news coverage shaped national opinions. The outlets were relatively few and news coverage rarely lasted more than three hours a day. Variations in opinion, such as those in the north and south over civil rights, were aired; yet the differences in interpretation between news outlets was less obvious than today.

Cable channels brought important changes to the way people gained news before social media arrived. Competing outlets segmented the public based on political leanings, making it possible to shop for a news provider that caters to specific points of view, consistently presenting interpretations along certain lines and being selective in the evidence and range of stories they show. Internet sites and social media have magnified the segmentation of interpretations to fit even smaller audiences. But size of the audience is not insignificant when a radicalized terror group uses the Internet to recruit worldwide.

My point is that accurate use of evidence and skeptical consideration of interpretations need to be taught in history courses as citizenship skills. This also makes discussion of current issues important, a point that will be discussed presently.

On the first day of class, as we review the syllabus, I emphasize the importance of professional behavior and skills as objectives of the course. The days when a student need only show up for exams and turn in a paper are gone. My courses now build in team-based activities counting 20% of the grade.

Rules of the course emphasize concentrating on the business of the class for the entire period. Temptations are many when students use laptops, tablets, and smart phones in class. They are not allowed to make or receive phone calls, check or send texts and email, surf the Internet, or work on anything except the class assignment – but students will always test to see how vigorously rules are enforced.

Students often resist the rules for team work. Many say they like group work because, in practice, good students often carry the load for weaker students to protect their own grade. Having been a team-building consultant, I insist they follow rules for full participation by making consensus decisions for which all members take responsibility. Assignments must undergo thorough team review so that the product, such as a presentation, looks as if it were prepared by a single person. The team grade on these assignments is also the grade for each team member. As in military basic training, failure of one person in team performance drags down the grade for everyone.

Although students will say they know how to work in teams or that my rules are not new, the skills I enforce can only be learned through practice under realistic pressures to work as a unit. Students usually discover they have not experienced real teamwork and that, like babies trying to walk, it is learned only by persisting after early failures.

Presentation skills are highlighted in my courses. Teams report the results of activities in class and undergo class discussion of their work. They also make a formal presentation on an assigned topic using presentation software. For this assignment, they are provided written guidance on making effective presentations and professional-looking slides. The outcome is expected to be a ten-minute presentation on a historical topic that demonstrates competent historical and presentation skills. Since this is also a team assignment, they must demonstrate their product followed the rules for teamwork.

Individual writing skills are also developed through two short essays and a paper. Class activities involve teams in preliminary work on writing assignments. When teams come together, weaker and stronger students can form peer mentoring relationships that boost performance of the weaker student on the individual assignments.

One of the rewards of teaching is the opportunity to write recommendations for jobs or admission to graduate programs. Thus far, even though teaching primarily freshmen, I have a high success rate for those who ask for recommendations. I believe the key to success, along with the overall grades of the student, is my ability to describe how they behaved as professionals, both individually and as team members.

Contemporary and World History

Two revolutionary changes to the study of history in my lifetime modified attitudes toward contemporary and world history. My high school (1950s) and college (early 1960s) history classes usually stopped before getting to recent history. Some writers made a distinction between history as stable knowledge of the past and current events for which long-term impacts were not yet known. The German philosopher of history Georg Hegel stated this view poetically in The Philosophy of Right: “The owl of Minerva spreads its wings only with the falling of the dusk.” Wisdom about history, in other words, is only possible in retrospect. Hegel and the historian Leopold von Ranke also expressed the traditional view of world history, which saw it as European mastery extending over the globe.

History teachers are rightly cautious about too much political discussion in class. The dilemma becomes obvious when thinking about the campaign and early presidency of Donald Trump. Opinions for and against both Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton were voiced in my classes. Especially important to me were the almost weekly statements and actions disrupting normal rules of American elections. Trump’s behavior and agenda overthrew normal expectations in a way not experienced since Andrew Jackson. Recognizing the occurrence of one historical precedent after another made the Trump experience an unavoidable topic, yet teachers like me needed to avoid turning classes into outbursts of opposing political speeches.

The current effort to revive American nationalism, in my view, represents opposition to loss of international dominance. The University of Chicago historian William H. McNeill was the first to describe world history in terms of interactions (such as trade, communications, epidemics) of cultures east to west and west to east across North Africa and Eurasia. Worldwide cultural interactions, now referred to as globalization, began as Europeans arrived in the Americas and then the Pacific islands. European and American assumptions of superiority have been resisted by former colonies as the planet is increasingly united by air and space travel, nearly instant communications, international trade, and danger of epidemics.

Our understanding of the importance of Columbus illustrates the joining of current events and a global view of world history. In high school and college, I learned that Columbus “discovered America” – a marvelous achievement of European superior knowledge and technology. But textbooks today recognize there were native populations in all the lands explored by Europeans who had cultures of their own and felt no need to be discovered. In fact, interaction with European powers often brought epidemics that decimated peoples not previously exposed to diseases that had long circulated in North Africa and Eurasia.

The achievements of Columbus look quite different when seen as part of the ongoing theme of human migration on planet earth. Patterns of migration are a constant issue of world history, as seen in the Trump campaign and electoral issues in European countries in 2016-17. Human beings were the first species to inhabit every continent. As they continue to move about, they disrupt old cultural patterns of religion, race, social relationships, and law.

What Columbus achieved was to inaugurate modern globalization as the Americas were brought into ongoing contact with cultures of North Africa and Eurasia. Innovative technologies keep intensifying the forces of transportation, economics, and communication that push cultures of European descent to treat other cultures equitably. These same forces are also intermixing populations as new migratory patterns keep emerging to challenge old cultural beliefs.

Even the remotest of historical events, like the first migration of humanity out of Africa or the arrival of humans in the Americas across land that is now under the Bering Strait, are still contemporary issues. There are political groupings in the United States today for whom the implications of human origin in Africa or rights of native groups in the Americas are urgent religious or constitutional issues.

Challenging students to pay attention to historical issues, no matter how ancient, as matters of ongoing importance to contemporary groups can encourage them to broaden their ideas of relevancy beyond the newest trends in their favorite technologies. Hopefully they will become better citizens as they connect present trends with the human past.

Science and History

Another revolutionary development in the study of history is narratives based on scientific evidence that probes into the deepest past and projects the most distant future.

Historians usually maintain that writing transformed pre-history into the proper study of human stories based on literary sources. This distinction is now rejected by many of us who affirm archaeological, geological, climatological, genetic, and chemical evidence – and even theories of physics – as sources for pushing histories to the origin of the universe, solar system, and life on earth.

Some historians espouse Deep History, which reverses time in explorations of human origins. Anthropology and archaeology, now with boosted power through genetic archaeology, have extended knowledge of the origin of our species, and of important attributes like speech, ever deeper into time. Many social sciences look at earliest cultural practices of hominines and their contemporaries. With their emphasis on pushing knowledge backward, these scholars sometimes attack cultural traditions such as the Judeo-Christian belief in forward progression of time from a primordial origin.

The trend that appeals most to me is called Big History. The narrative follows the traditional progression from a beginning (the Big Bang) known through scientific theory and data. Relying on physics and cosmological theories, the story traces the evolution of complexity from ultimate chaos to the current state of the universe – and uses the same theories to project likely developments billions of years from now. This scientific-historical narrative highlights the origin of our solar system, of life, and then evolution of humanity and its history.

As outlined in the first college textbook on the subject, Big History emphasizes eight points of major transition. The three most recent concern human history – origin of the species, adoption of agriculture, and arrival of the Industrial Revolution. Like other transitions in the narrative, these bring greater complexity that offer both dramatic new possibilities and greater dangers. The challenges now facing humanity include destruction of life on our planet and collapse of systems based on ever faster innovations that test the adaptability of human societies.

Students have been excited when I introduced aspects of Big History during world history courses. Those not interested in pursuing detailed understanding of sciences like mathematics, chemistry, or physics are stimulated by seeing the results of applying them to understanding evolution of order and life in the universe. I like the way students learn important scientific information in combination with an approach to human history that is sensitive to all cultural and religious traditions.

One of the first applications of Big History to education happened at Dominican University near San Francisco. Experiments with courses led to changing the mission of the institution and requiring all entering freshmen to take Big History under the guidance of an interdisciplinary team of instructors. Part of the idea was to use Big History to promote a unified approach to knowledge in the sciences, arts, and technologies while also building an educational environment in which faculty collaborated across disciplinary lines in ways that are student-centered. The experience at Dominican University led to summer institutes for a few years and then to publication of results in Teaching Big History.

Visualizing the timespans involved in scientific approaches to history has been a challenge. Time divisions of ancient, medieval, and modern apply to life since “civilizations” began. Archaeological divisions by types of tools (old stone, new stone, bronze, or iron) keep changing in spans of years. Starting with the Big Bang requires leaping billions and millions of years, then zooming in on thousands and hundreds as literary evidence begins.

A novel insight for many students is that history involves time travel. Not the science-fiction kind of travel so popular with young people, but non-fiction travel that speeds through billions of years backward and forward as well as centuries, decades, months, and days. The University of California at Berkeley has a website, featuring work of the geologist Walter Alvarez, called ChronoZoom which allows users to jump over time from the Big Bang until the present, zooming in closer and zooming out as students travel through time. The International Association of Big History website also has a link to the Cosmic Evolution Arrow of Time site by Harvard University for another way of scooting around in time.

After a career of “pushing the envelope” as a teacher, I now espouse the radical idea of teaching science in combination with the story of the universe, and in further combination with world history and current events to emphasize globalization in its broadest definition. This goes way past the bounds of history by having teachers of sciences, literature, arts, religion, philosophy, education, and history collaborating in a course that mirrors the scientific quest for a Grand Unification Theory.

Even in an environment as stimulating as the one at Georgia Gwinnett College, there are still bureaucratic walls. For members of a state university system, those walls are fortified by state laws and regulations that can stifle experiments like Big History.

Still, I remain optimistic. Considering the extent of change I have witnessed in a career spanning 49 years, the odds favor innovation.



Web Design Companies – How To Choose The Right One For Your Business

Your website is your company’s calling card on the internet so you need to have one you’re proud of and does the job it’s meant to, and offer pleasant viewing for your browsers which can only be achieved with quality web development. That means getting a professional web development company to develop your site and create web based solutions for your business. But before approaching a web design company, you should clarify your requirements. Here’s how you do it.

Firstly, you must establish your goals. What’s the purpose of your web site? Are you selling products, displaying your portfolio, announcing your services? What do you want your visitors to do? Put yourself in your visitor’s shoes. What do they expect to find at your website?

Next you have to set your budget. Having these figures in hand at the beginning can help in your negotiation with the web design companies. But don’t reveal your budget. Always get quotes based on your needs first. The first thing you would probably do if you live in Liverpool is, go to Google and search for web design companies in Liverpool. Take the advantage of the global reach of the internet and search for web design agencies in UK. Also take into considerations if you have any technical staff you employ, would you need to do the maintenance of the sites yourself? If you do not have the staff, then web based solutions could be the right option for your web development, which are offered by many web design agencies in the UK, how would you find these companies? Just do a quick search in Google for web design agencies UK and it should bring up a long list of web design agencies in the UK. But then it is down to you to single out the right company for your web development needs. However, you could do a more specific search for certain areas like web design companies in Manchester, which would be more local so you can go to see your web development company when you may need to. Web design companies in London would tend to be more expensive compared to the rest of the country

Establishing your goals in this way allows you to clearly explain your requirements to the web design agency that you choose. In fact, these are the same types of questions that web development companies ask at the start of any project. Having the answers readily at hand means you have a better chance of getting the site that you want. Plus, the information you gather from these questions can help in choosing the right web development company.

Finally we come to the all-important step of choosing a web design company. Remember that building a website involves the separate skills of design and development. You need a company with expertise in both web design and web development. And if the firm has business skills, then better still, as you will find if you search for web design companies in Birmingham, they have a lot of al round skills in web development and offering web based solutions.

In fact the ideal web design and web development firm should also offer SEO consulting and marketing advice. Searching for web design companies Leeds would give you less choice of web development and SEO, however, if you searched for web design companies Manchester or web design companies London, you would find more companies with mixtures of different skill sets to make your web design and web development project successful, also the firm should be knowledgeable about the fast-changing world of ecommerce and be able to offer solutions such as database integration, content management, and shopping carts, for example. A firm that has this all round knowledge will be able to come up with ideas and advice that lead to total development solutions. So how do you find your dream design firm?

The first thing to do is to make a shortlist of website design and web development companies and check their online portfolios. See if their designs look like they’d work for your concept. Is the layout clean and easy to navigate? Is the image of the company presented well and is the website’s purpose immediately clear? Be wary of designs that are heavy with flash animations, or feature graphics but little text. This suggests the design firm values form over function which is ineffective if you’re trying to sell something. Check if the company has offered web based solutions in the past, ask if you can speak to any of their client who have had web based solutions and web development done from them. Remember, you want to find one firm that can handle both the design and development aspects of website creation. Finally, you should ask for customer references. Then, get in touch with existing clients and ask about their experience with the web design company.



Going Global With Influencer Marketing

Remember that girl in seventh grade who always had the hottest, latest cropped jacket or denim skirt, and made sure everyone else wanted it, too? Put her on social media, amplify her reach planet-wide, and you’ve got one of the most sought-after entities in the contemporary marketing world: a global influencer.

While this may be a slight oversimplification, the overall concept remains the same: a global influencer is someone with the sway to make other people all over the world buy certain products and services. Let’s take a closer look at the growing area of influencer marketing, along with how to take your influencer marketing strategies to the global level.

The 411 on Influencer Marketing

While word of mouth has always mattered, it’s more important than ever in the world of social media. Why? Because people neither like nor trust traditional advertising anymore. Which begs the question: what — or more accurately, who — do they trust? The answer is simple. Other people.

And while friends and family may seem like the obvious candidates for eliciting trust, a different breed of online gurus has emerged in the form of influencers. Including everyone from moms to Millennials, these 21st century power players — who earn their influencer status through a combination of expertise, popularity, and reputation — don’t explicitly sell, but instead “share.” In doing so, they foster an irresistible sense of authenticity among their network of followers.

Just how much do influencers matter? According to Tomoson, a software-as-a-service company aimed at blogger and influencer outreach, influencer marketing is the fastest growing online customer-acquisition channel outpacing all other contenders, including both organic and paid search, email marketing, and bottom finisher affiliate marketing.

Going Global With Influencer Marketing

While your seventh grade classmate’s frame of reference may only have reached as far as the local shopping mall, today’s global economy calls for a different approach. After all, we now have access to products and services from around the world. And while global influencers can still have value at the local level, they also have the ability to reach a broader audience of like-interested people from very different backgrounds. Applying global influencer strategies, however, involves extra logical, technical and logistical factors.

One of the biggest obstacles to implementing global influence strategies involves finding your global influencers. First and foremost are the intertwined issue of language and culture — particularly when translation enters the mix. Fluency is one thing, but the ability to acknowledge the nuances and intricacies of language supersedes basic auto-translation services. Meanwhile, Google searches and AdWords are both useful when it comes to identifying reputable, relevant thought leaders within your target foreign market. Sites like Klout can also help you hone in on potential influencers with appropriate authority.

The next step? Determining a prospective global influencer’s willingness to share and engage with their followers. In other words, expertise is only part of the equation: amplification is another critical component. Conversely, lack of engaged followers will shut down your efforts before they even get started.

Ultimately, while amping up your influencer marketing efforts to a global level can be both complex and challenging, the potential payoffs are huge. In broadening your influencer strategies on the global stage in a targeted yet resonant way, you stand to exponentially increase both your business and brand. Having a reputable translation partner with a strong global footprint is a big step in the right direction.



Selecting the Right Running Shoe

When buying running shoes there are literally hundreds of shoes to choose from. Running shoes are used to protect your feet from the roads and to absorb the tremendous shock the feet will take. Since every runner is unique in how many miles they run and there individual running style, there is not one perfect running shoe. The best shoe for you depends on the shape of your foot, your biomechanics and the type of cushioning you want.

The first thing you should focus on is the foot. Start by standing up and putting your weight evenly on both feet. Focus on the arches and see if they almost touch the floor. If they do, you have low arches. Runners that have this condition are usually over pronating, or their foot rolls to the inside. If you have a high arch you have the opposite condition called supination. This is when the foot rolls to the outside. If your arch is in the middle you are considered a neutral runner.

If you have trouble determining if your arch is high, low or neutral you can also try the next method. Take an old pair of running shoes and look at the wear pattern on the forefoot. If it is worn on the outside of the shoe you supinate. If the wear pattern is on the inside of the shoe you are a pronator. If the wear is even across the forefoot you foot is neutral.

For most people who pronate they tend to need a shoe that has more stability. A stability shoe has a heel counter and a medial EVA post. A heel counter is simply a piece of the shoe that wraps around the heel. It prevents excess movement. A medial post is positioned on the inside of the shoe’s midsole. Most shoe manufactures make the post a contrasting color. This hard foam takes more stress to compress and limit’s the pronation motion. Make sure the EVA post is not too hard because you want some movement in the foot.

Runners that supinate do not need a stability shoe with the heel counter and the medial post. If they choose a shoe with these stability features they could injure themselves by putting the foot in a stressful position. If you are a neutral runner then you can have a little of both types of shoes. Remember though; do not get carried away with having to much or not enough stability.

After determining what stability features you need the next thing to do is look at cushioning technology. Every time you land you are putting 2.5 to 3 times your body weight on the foot. So it is important to have the proper cushioning. Every brand has there own way of approaching this. The midsole of the shoe contain the foam stuff that absorbs the shock when the foot strikes the road. The midsole also provide the rebound properties to help the foot take off into its next stage of the running movement.

Midsoles are made out of two types of materials. The first is EVA foam. It is made up of thousands of foam cells that contain air or gas. When you land on your foot these gases are pushed out and sucked back in. Over time these cells don’t rebound as well and lose its cushioning. The EVA sole is used by most shoe manufactures because it is light and great for cushioning. The downside is that it loses its cushioning faster. The second type of midsole is made out of polyurethane. It has a stronger cell wall and takes longer to wear out. The polyurethane midsole is much heavier and does not give as much back to the runners stride.

When determining how long a running shoe is good for there is not one answer. Each person is different not only by the size of the runner but how hard does the runner impact the ground. One thing a runner can do to give them an idea of when to get a new pair is to look at the bottom of their shoes and see if the black sole is running thin. If so it is time to get a new pair. Another way to determine if you need a new pair of shoes is the feel of your body. If your feet and legs are sore or you feel less bounce in your step this may be an indication that you need new shoes. I usually run about 500 miles in my shoes before it is time to get a new pair. Through my years of training and knowing my body quite well this is about the time my legs feel a little tired.

When determining the right shoe for you do not go with the latest fad and the most expensive shoe. Pick a shoe that is going to fit your needs. The best place to find this out is by going to your local running store. These local stores have trained professionals and are usually runners themselves. The customer service is excellent and they always are up to date with the latest technology. I hope this article helps you and keep running.


A Short Guide To Increasing Your Blog’s Traffic

So you’ve decided to start a blog? You’ve written a few entries, but it’s not getting the responses and feedback you expected when you decided to take the initial plunge. You don’t want to give up, but quite honestly you can’t understand just why blogs are such a big deal. What’s all the fuss about? And why does everyone talk about blogs in such reverent, awed tones?

The word blog is an abbreviation for Web Log. Described as an online diary, a blog gives its writer the freedom to express his or her personal thoughts and opinions to what is potentially the biggest audience in the world. The freedom and accessibility of the Internet means that anyone in the world can access any blog at any time. Theoretically a blog has the potential to be read by more people than any best selling book. It’s a disturbing, yet exhilarating thought.

Blogs are virtually the ultimate soapbox, and the true success of a blog depends on how the writer wants to reach his or her readers. There are a number of different ways in which to write a blog, and the content supplied needs to be considered according to the audience you want to reach. There are many different kinds of blogs, and I’ve selected the ones I feel most relevant to a personal blogger.

Some of the most popular blogs are cultural. These attract a wide audience, and discuss different cultural activities, ranging from sports to theatre and films. One way to use a cultural blog is to write a book or film review, or share the experience of attending a live concert. Imagine being able to share the experience of attending a concert given by a popular entertainer like Madonna with readers from all over the world. Imagine being able to compare your concert experience with people on continents who have seen the same show. That’s why cultural blogs are so popular.

topical blog is more specific, in that it focuses on a niche market. Local blogs, covering events in a neighbourhood, a town or a city fit this description. The people living in the specific area featured in the blog are actual participants to all events and happenings in the blog. Another type of a topical blog is one that covers a specific subject rather than a physical area. For example: a patient living with cancer can share many aspects of the condition with readers. He can share his daily feelings as he undergoes treatment and the reactions of his family and friends with readers who may have the same medical dilemma. Organizations covering human rights abuses in a specific country can blog about their findings, making people all over the world aware of the situation in which they’re working. On a lighter note pet owners have written blogs from their pet’s point of view, allowing their animal to narrate the entries. Animal lovers all over the world can contribute and share their own experiences with their owners in a light hearted, humorous style.

political blog is dependent upon the media and the news, and the blogger will combine personal observations with links to other blogs and articles on the Internet. A more serious politician will feature his or her own beliefs and comments, with links to supporting blogs and media articles. Political blogs can inspire fierce and enthusiastic debates among readers, which makes them extremely diverse and interesting. A warblog focuses upon news event about an ongoing war or military action, although these types of blogs have been accused of supporting war rather than remaining neutral.

Perhaps the most common type of blog is the personal one. Popular with students and those wanting to share their experiences with family and friends, entries are usually written in a personal diary format. Although growing in popularity, it’s more difficult to attract large reader numbers to this kind of blog. For example: a student living in a country in Africa will probably not bookmark a blog written by someone from a country like Scotland. The cultural and environmental differences between the two are significantly diverse. Another consideration is how long can diary entries about family and friend’s activities hold anyone’s attention if he’s never met them – and isn’t likely to anytime in the future?

If the writer pays attention to each entry, applying good grammar, humour and writing in a style that makes readers want to know more about the featured characters there’s a chance a few may return. However part of the appeal of this blog is the personal approach, and there’s a very real risk of losing the chance to build on the interaction between a crowd of people who have a physical connection rather than one formed in cyberspace. The best approach in this instance would be to write each blog entry as though it’s a chapter in a book about the characters.

Personal blogs can be used in other ways too. Some people use an entry to write a poem, a chapter in a novel or a short story. Others will debate their religious, political or other beliefs. Some will write about their thoughts and feelings on current news items, others may use them to describe personal feelings during a crisis, such as coping with an illness or death of a loved one. In this instance writing the blog becomes a cathartic experience, and the support of readers can help the writer cope with a deep, personal issue or crisis.

As most blogs are personal there are a number of ways in which the blogger can maintain and possible increase his or her audience.

Be Diverse – vary your entries every day. Share an anecdote about a friend or family member in one entry, then follow it with a story about your pet. If you’ve read an interesting story on the news dedicate an entry to it. Share a joke you received on an email from a friend. You could write a book review or share your thoughts on a film or DVD you’ve just watched. Think Forrest GumpLife is like a box of chocolates – you never know what you’re going to get.

Be Candid – be truthful, frank and straightforward. Know your facts. If you’re commenting on a topical story or issue research your facts before committing them to the blog. Explain the reasoning for your beliefs, and back them with proven facts.

Be Neutral – don’t scorn, condemn or criticise those who disagree with your beliefs. Accept that everyone’s entitled to his or her opinion. It’s an idea to reflect both sides of the argument in an entry, taking care to avoid criticising or berating others. That’s the basis of democracy, and it’s a good point to remember when debating a “hot” issue in a blog.

Be Friendly – acknowledge those who take the time to read and contribute to your blog. If someone’s left a comment in your blog with a return email or blog address, send a message. Or better still pay a visit to the relevant blog. It could be the beginning of a beautiful friendship. The visitor may tell others about your blog, and their visits will increase your blog’s popularity – not to mention your viewing statistics!

Be Entertaining – use your sense of humour, don’t take yourself too seriously. Sharing thoughts, ideas and experiences in writing is the same as sitting in a room with a group of friends. Just because you cannot see their faces doesn’t mean they’re not like you. Your blogging friends are special people, who’ve taken the time to respond to your words. Share some of yourself with them, and you’ll find your blogging circle grows.

A blog is a powerful communicative tool, and it needs to be handled properly. A well written, interesting blog has the ability to be read by people from all over the world. There are now more than 60 million blogs on the Internet, and that number is increasing daily. Self publishing house Lulu recently announced the winner of the inaugural Blooker Prize. Julie Powell wrote a blog about her attempts to cook all the recipes in an old French cookery book. Her blog was turned into a blook and to date she’s sold 100,000 copies.



The Tenderfoot’s Guide to Buying Tennis Shoes

When one refers to “tennis shoes,” it typically means an athletic shoe of any kind. However, this does not mean that all athletic shoes are suitable for the game of tennis. When playing tennis, you should be sure to wear shoes designed specifically for the sport, and not walking shoes, running shoes, or generic sports sneakers. These kinds of shoes provide improper support for tennis, and could cause ankle or foot injuries if worn during play. Not only that, such shoes have the potential for damaging the surface of a tennis court.

Many factors should be considered when choosing a shoe for tennis. First, the type of surface you usually play on is important. Depending on whether you play on hard court, clay, grass or another surface has an impact on which kind of shoe is best. Next, your individual foot type and body type should be matched with a shoe designed to maximize comfort and effectiveness. Lastly, you must ensure that the shoe fits properly.

Those who regularly play tennis on soft court surfaces, such as clay, would be advised to select tennis shoes that above all else provide superior traction. It is also important that the shoe have a flat, smooth sole. The bumps typically located on the soles of running and cross-training shoes can harm the surfaces of clay courts. For this reason, most clay court facilities do not even allow players to wear such shoes.

Tennis players who spend the majority of the time on hard court surfaces should select tennis shoes that are durable and resistant to wear. Repeated play on hard courts, such as concrete, will gradually wear the tread off the soles. This will lead to a loss of traction and increased slipping over time. Additionally, the portion of the shoe that covers the big toes should have added protection on the outside. This is because while serving, tennis players drag their toes. This type of drag also occurs when executing forehand groundstrokes. Right-handed players need extra protection on the inside toe area of their right tennis shoe, while left-handed players need this protection on the inside toe area of their left shoe.

Characteristics of your feet and body are also important when considering which tennis shoes to purchase. For those with susceptibility to blisters, it is of the utmost importance to wear tennis shoes that fit perfectly and that offer additional padding. Body type is also important. Larger and heavier players will most likely prefer heavier shoes that provide extra support. Advances in tennis shoe technology have created special cushioning and moisture removal systems that do not add much additional weight, so players with special needs will not be sacrificing much in the way of quickness and agility to meet their individual needs.

After you decide which kind of tennis shoe that is right for you, it is important to choose one that fits properly. Since tennis is a sport with a lot of stopping motions, and starting, sprinting, and cutting as well, you should select a shoe that fits tightly across the width of the foot. A good rule of thumb is to guarantee that your tennis shoes offer a minimum of one half of an inch of space between your toes and the end of the tennis shoe, and that should help greatly to ensure the balance between comfort and proper support.