Image Is Everything

Five words or less(NewsUSA) – Today people are bombarded with more information than they can process. Simultaneously, websites, blogs and social media have the public trained to consume information in bullet points, sound bytes and tweets containing 140 characters or less.
No matter how you are trying to get your message across, whether through social media, a website or blog, an ad or even a presentation, the best way to pique someone’s interest is through compelling imagery. Photos must be engaging enough to get someone to focus on what you’ve got to say.
When choosing an image, it pays to be selective. Great images have the power to inform, inspire, confuse, shock, delight, empower, enrage and enlighten. Start by thinking about things like:
* Whom you want to reach?
* What message you want to communicate?
* What sort of tone you want to set?
* What kind of reaction you want?
While the image should relate to the overall topic, it doesn’t have to do so literally. This gives you the artistic freedom to have fun with your image search. It also will help you remain open to inspiration as you search.
As to effective image searches, sifting through millions of images on the Internet via a simple search engine query is highly ineffective. The chances of finding something the right size, shape, resolution and quality are low. Copyright and privacy issues also arise — particularly if the photos will be used commercially.
Fortunately, there are places to get inexpensive imagery that can be legitimately used for a whole host of purposes. Stock pictures can be purchased from places like www.photos.com for as little as a dollar or two.
For blog posts, budget-sensitive projects and nonprofits, Photos.com offers easy searching from numerous categories in several subject areas. You can buy a single image, packs of images at various resolution sizes or even annual subscriptions.
For images to be used for an extended time, as in a website, or a marketing brochure, more highly art-directed imagery can be found at www.iStockphoto.com. Both sites have powerful search engines that make short work of finding the perfect image.

The Halls are Alive With the Sound of Music

Five words or less(NewsUSA) – Today people are bombarded with more information than they can process. Simultaneously, websites, blogs and social media have the public trained to consume information in bullet points, sound bytes and tweets containing 140 characters or less.
No matter how you are trying to get your message across, whether through social media, a website or blog, an ad or even a presentation, the best way to pique someone’s interest is through compelling imagery. Photos must be engaging enough to get someone to focus on what you’ve got to say.
When choosing an image, it pays to be selective. Great images have the power to inform, inspire, confuse, shock, delight, empower, enrage and enlighten. Start by thinking about things like:
* Whom you want to reach?
* What message you want to communicate?
* What sort of tone you want to set?
* What kind of reaction you want?
While the image should relate to the overall topic, it doesn’t have to do so literally. This gives you the artistic freedom to have fun with your image search. It also will help you remain open to inspiration as you search.
As to effective image searches, sifting through millions of images on the Internet via a simple search engine query is highly ineffective. The chances of finding something the right size, shape, resolution and quality are low. Copyright and privacy issues also arise — particularly if the photos will be used commercially.
Fortunately, there are places to get inexpensive imagery that can be legitimately used for a whole host of purposes. Stock pictures can be purchased from places like www.photos.com for as little as a dollar or two.
For blog posts, budget-sensitive projects and nonprofits, Photos.com offers easy searching from numerous categories in several subject areas. You can buy a single image, packs of images at various resolution sizes or even annual subscriptions.
For images to be used for an extended time, as in a website, or a marketing brochure, more highly art-directed imagery can be found at www.iStockphoto.com. Both sites have powerful search engines that make short work of finding the perfect image.

Small Business Tips for Staying Afloat During a Down Economy

Small businesses are the backbone of the American economy. According to the Small Business Administration, small businesses are responsible for generating 64 percent of net new jobs over the past 15 years. And in his latest stump speech, President Obama called small businesses “the places where most jobs begin.”

Despite their value, the nature of small business makes them particularly sensitive to a volatile economy. Millions of U.S. small businesses — especially in the retail, business services and housing industries — were made vulnerable by the recent housing slump and credit crunch, causing potential customers to tighten their purse strings and making it more difficult for small businesses to obtain loans and credit. Therefore, the question becomes, how do small businesses survive during a down economy—especially when they’ve already cut costs as far as they can go?

Small Businesses Want to Make a Big Splash Without Getting all Wet

It’s usually better to be a big fish in a small pond than a small fish in a big pond, or so the saying goes. Many of today’s small and medium-sized companies are trying to figure out how to make a big splash when launching or renovating their presence on the web.

How crowded is the web? Well, according to Royal Pingdom, a global Internet tracking and statistics company, there are over 234 million unique websites. Many of these sites are expensive to create and costly to maintain while only being mediocre and containing no consistent theme or message.

College Senior Projects Address Real Business Needs

For business and technology students at DeVry University, the name of the game was innovation — not just graduation — as they presented their final senior projects to industry experts and local leaders.

“Students really get to showcase their talents when they present their senior projects,” said DeVry University associate professor Deborah Helman. “And they’re also given the opportunity to demonstrate for business leaders the importance of building healthy, dynamic relationships with local communities.”

Seniors at DeVry University Tackle Real Business Needs

Five words or less(NewsUSA) – For business and technology students at DeVry University, the name of the game was innovation — not just graduation — as they presented their final senior projects to industry experts and local leaders.
“Students really get to showcase their talents when they present their senior projects,” said DeVry University Associate Professor Deborah Helman. “And they’re also given the opportunity to demonstrate for business leaders the importance of building healthy, dynamic relationships with local communities.”
Campus-wide, DeVry University senior project presentations, or “fairs,” are held several times a year. Employers and business leaders in the community are invited to attend the events, view the projects up close, talk to the student inventors and get a first-hand look at the imagination, creativity and industry prowess a student might bring to a job.
At DeVry University’s North Brunswick campus, more than 60 seniors in 16 groups presented the projects they had worked on for the past several months, focusing on creating smart business solutions and strategic marketing plans for local small businesses.
One team of students worked on redesigning a website for Xtreme Dezines, an online home-based business specializing in custom jewelry and handbags. “Our client wanted to gain revenue and market share, so we decided that she should concentrate her business efforts on exposing her products to the public,” said DeVry University student Nilsa Martinez. “This would help to create the best sales opportunities for our client while also increasing additional market share and expanding her customer base.” So, the team decided to design an attractive website, create an expansive promotional plan and develop the accounting software needed to help her better establish her company.
At the DeVry University Fremont campus, a team of Information Technology students created a Top Security Access Authentication System, which they designed to add multiple levels of critical security clearances at high-powered facilities such as power plants and military bases. Meanwhile, another team of students proposed their senior project, a Pilot Authentication System that uses various biometric sensors to ensure passenger safety by confirming the pilot’s identity and sobriety before allowing the airplane to take off.
To reinforce how the effort that the students put into their senior projects will pay off with career success, chief technology officer for Integrated Media Management and DeVry University alumnus Nish Shah came back to the North Brunswick campus to give a keynote speech.
“The best part about DeVry University’s training was that it gave me hands-on experience. It allowed me to think about what I needed to do and how I should respond to a real-life situation,” said Shah. He also credited DeVry University with improving his communication and team-building skills.
Although not all DeVry University senior projects make it into commercial production, the experience of identifying a need and creating a solution is just as important to the overall learning process.
For more information, visit www.devry.edu.

New Website Caters to News Junkies, Political Right

For those political junkies that can’t seem to get their fill of what’s happening inside the Beltway, a new website may be just enough to satisfy.

Armstrong Williams, a self-described conservative columnist, television and radio host and political activist recently launched www.rightsidewire.com. The site, Williams says, will offer full feature stories, opinions and commentary, well as fresh insight and perspectives from not only his niche audience (the Republican right or the African American minority perspective), but from all voices of society.

In addition, the website will allow for social media interaction, daily blogs from contributors, the latest articles and links on current trends and culture, and live streams of his radio and television shows.

How to Make Your Website’s Design Shine

Five words or less(NewsUSA) – Whether you’re preparing for your wedding, chronicling your travels or running a small business, a website or blog is the easiest way to share information with family, friends, professional contacts or customers. With advances in technology making it easier to build websites, millions of Americans are figuring out the basics of web design. Others are turning to professional designers for help.
What makes a website’s design successful? According to design experts, there are five keys to effective website design. These tips will help ensure that your website attracts visitors, encourages them to browse and — if you’re selling — entices customers to buy.
1. Minimalist design. Your website should look clean and uncluttered. Minimalist design makes it easy for visitors to concentrate on the content. If a page has too many elements, visitors may become confused. This doesn’t mean the design has to be boring — a simple approach, focusing on a few key details, will make it look modern and stylish.
2. Fabulous photos. Avoid cliché or unprofessional photography and find images that say something genuine about you or your business. For affordable, reliable photography that makes it easier to be creative, try stock photography websites like Veer (www.veer.com), which has images for as little as $1, or for exceptional images, try Corbis Images (www.corbisimages.com), which has web-resolution images starting at $5.
3. Encourage action. Whether you want people to note your wedding details, view your travel photos or make a purchase, make sure that your “call to action” is clear and concise. Use short and snappy language, and large, boldly colored, clickable buttons that are in the top or middle of the page.
4. Focus on fonts. Bold fonts help visitors recognize the important messages and call-to-action on a page, while more common fonts are perfect for explaining the details. Veer.com has thousands of unique fonts for just a few dollars.
5. Color counts. Color conveys meaning and encourages different reactions by visitors. Don’t forget to make good use of white space — the space between different elements of a design. Used well, it allows for easier scanning of your site.
Design resources like Smashing magazine (www.smashingmagazine.com) or Daily Blog Tips (www.dailyblogtips.com) provide more in-depth information to help solve specific challenges.

Naomi Judd Offers Support to Those Living With Chronic Pain

(NewsUSA) – It may surprise you to learn that before she became a country music icon, Naomi Judd was a critical care nurse. Unlike facing a stadium full of adoring fans, as a nurse she witnessed the daily challenges faced by people with chronic pain and those who care for them.More recently, Judd watched a dear friend suffer from excruciating pain during his battle with pancreatic cancer. Because he was an educated and empowered patient, he received excellent pain management and was able to live his remaining days to the fullest.As a spokesperson for the national education program Partners Against Pain, Judd now has 50 million reasons to let others know that they don’t need to suffer in silence. That’s because the latest statistics show that more than 50 million Americans live with pain, making it one of the top reasons people seek medical care.Judd is encouraging people with pain and their caregivers to learn as much as they can about proper pain management. "From day to day, pain can limit your ability to enjoy your work, your hobbies — even rob you of the simple joys of hugging someone you love," says Judd.Each person’s pain is unique and different. In many cases, managing pain requires an integrative approach that combines prescription medicine with complementary techniques such as physical therapy, acupuncture and massage.Judd wants people to know the journey to appropriate pain management can begin with a visit to the recently updated Partners Against Pain website (www.PartnersAgainstPain.com). The new, user-friendly layout features customized sections for patients, caregivers and healthcare professionals that make it easy find information about various painful conditions, including arthritis, cancer pain and low back pain. Special downloadable features — such as a Patient Comfort Assessment Guide with a daily pain diary and pain management log — are also available, along with links to other pain education and advocacy groups.The website also contains valuable information and tools to help family caregivers meet the unique challenges of caring for loved ones coping with chronic pain.Partners Against Pain is a national education program provided by Purdue Pharma.