10+ Fortune 500 Companies That Should Invest In New Websites

Needless to say, the website has become the face of any company nowadays, regardless of its size or area of activity. Since the Internet is the go-to choice for most people, every business struggles to achieve an impeccable image online. Moreover, they tend to adopt the latest trends in communication to a certain extent. But have you ever wondered how the world’s richest companies deal with their online presence and representation? Your question is absolutely valid. Last weeks, Fortune released the list of top 500 largest companies in the world. It would be interesting to analyze their websites. Surely, there are better and worse websites out there. But to our surprise, some of these companies could have done significantly better, considering their wealth and status. Therefore, in this article, we have explored the aforementioned list and selected 10 companies that should invest in redesigning their web pages.

Our list consists of two gasoline traders (Sinopec, Marathon Petroleum Corporation), one Healthcare company (United Health), one financial company (Berkshire Hathaway), a commercial vehicle distribution business (Penske Automotive), an electricity provider (State Grid), two retailers (Kroger, Best Buy), a postal service (Japan Post Holdings), and a wireless operator (Verizon).

Frankly speaking, it was somewhat frustrating to see poorly-designed websites pertaining to some of the most thriving businesses in the world. How can we expect high-quality designs from smaller ones, when companies such as these fail to impress their audience? Is it because these companies are powerful and wealthy that they do not pay attention to their websites?

State Grid

This is one of the most outdated websites we have seen lately. When landing on the State Grid’s web page, you feel as if you have traveled 10-15 years back in time. It looks as if it was designed in the 2000s, with zero updates ever since. There are various gaffes here. The two most blatant mistakes were the use of Flash and that of automatic carousels on the home page. Along with these two outdated trends, the company logo is poorly rendered, the text is hardly legible, and the article-preview block has text lines that are not trimmed properly. It’s understandable that a government-owned company would not focus on providing a great user experience. Nevertheless, taking into consideration the scale of State Grid, we believe they could have done a better job with their website.

Sinopec Corp

Yet another website built using Flash… “Add your advertisement here” is the first thought that comes to mind when seeing this homepage. Also, the design seems to be stuck in the 2000s. They could have done a better job at telling more about their company. For example, a video with the company’s latest promo clip or a hero image focusing on the visitor’s attention could have been better choices.

This also applies to the Chinese version of the website. Speaking about the languages in which the content is written, mixing Chinese and English on the same page is not a good option. Apparently, the company does not pay too much attention on providing a great UX to its visitors.

Berkshire Hathaway

 

Just what is this? Believe it or not, this is Berkshire Hathaway’s official website, a company ranked no.8 worldwide, having a + $200M revenue. We are speechless. It is, hands down, the worst website we have ever seen, and we have seen way too many terrible web pages until now. Still, some of its subsidiaries, such as GEICO, DURACELL or BNSF for example, have decent websites. We just do not understand why the corporate web page of the parent company looks like someone’s planner from the 90s.

There is nothing to say about this site because there is nothing on it. No vision, no design, no content. It is just an incomprehensible absence. Null.

Verizon

Landing on Verizon’s homepage for the first time gives away the vibe of a minimalist website design. Things are a little bit different, though. The simplicity of this web page certainly contributes to an easy navigation, and helps distinguish among the company’s target audiences. Nevertheless, these easy-going pictures may exhibit a sense of unprofessional identity.

If we take a look at the company’s competitors, such as Vodafone, AT&T, and Orange (in Europe), we see a clear customer-centered design replete with pictures of happy clients.

 

Real images with real people allow the audience to relate to the products or services of a company. But a website that only has plans and phones, without actual people, will most likely not engage their visitors as much as it could.

Japan Post Holdings

Templates and stock photos everywhere! Cheap website builders and stock photos are available today, but this does not mean that people have to use them as they are. Especially by some of the largest and the most reputable companies in the world!

Any experienced web designer has a keen eye when it comes to template-looking websites. If a web page looks like a politics column, then it certainly does not reflect the company’s image. Japan Post Holding’s website needs some redesign work lest they shrink their business image.

UnitedHealth Group

Nowadays, most companies focus on delivering customer-centric content and personalized pictures. This is not just a trend in web design, but a part of an efficient communication strategy. But seeing one of the top 50 companies in the Fortune 500 list using stock photos for the whole site seems a bit out-of-character.

UnitedHealth’s main flaw is that it uses just one picture. More than that, it is next to a huge clip-art image, which is a shocking choice altogether. If you scroll down, you can only see plain text. This approach might work well for the mobile version of the website. But why should it interfere with the desktop user experience?

Unfortunately, the UnitedHealth’s website is a classic example of how not to use stock images for your online presence. They clearly do not know that stock photos do not contribute to the company’s efforts in upholding its reputation.

Best Buy

Believe or not, this is the home page of Best Buy’s company, ranked no. 71 in Fortune 500 list. Honestly, we have seen better websites of much smaller companies. Not to mention that after choosing Country and Language, the “Go” button does not work. We always talk about providing a great user experience to the site’s visitors, but it seems that this company does not know how to do this. Definitely, the website needs a redesign. But before doing so, we think they should take a look at Amazon’s website for some inspiration. Can you spot the difference?

Penske Automotive

Yet another trip back to the 2000s. This time it is because of Penske Automotive’s home page. Firstly, the design is extremely outdated. A website centered on the screen, large dark gray unused space, an automatic carousel of images above the fold, and well, that’s about it. There are a lot of old elements that just do not go with a modern, eye-catching website. The latter engages its visitors and provides a great user experience. If you check the Press Release page, you’ll notice just a listing of titles. Taking into consideration their area of expertise and the amount of useful information they could share with their visitors, I was surprised to notice the absence of their blog.

Do you know the worst part? The website has been redesigned this year and it is unresponsive!

Kroger

Not a member? You cannot surf their website! This could be appropriate for a website with restricted content, not for a retail network! Buyers are the main category of users for this kind of websites, so the site’s goal should be attracting new customers. But Kroger seems not to care if their users cannot see access prices and useful info unless they logged in.

Strangely enough, it seems that Kroger wants to engage only particular users. This is suggested by publishing cooking recipes and by sponsoring social activities. But the website’s structure does not properly fit any objective. It tells us that the company cannot decide on the purpose of the website – deal with their customers, act as an online shopping platform, or build audience.

Marathon Petroleum Corporation

Enough with the outdated website designs! According to its own presentation, Marathon Petroleum Corporationis one of the largest petroleum product refiners, marketers and transporters in the United States”. Surely, their website does not reflect this. It looks rather like an unhappy news web page. Take a closer look at the main picture. Even if they wanted that to be a custom image, the result is poor. And just what is there under “Popular links”? Nothing. Maybe that is because there are no popular links to share?

Also, they did not pay any attention to the content. Again, that may be simply because they do not have any content – just a listing of titles and a lot of white space. Instead of this, they could have used their home page to either provide useful information or engage their audience.

And to make the situation matters worse, they have just redesigned their website. Guess what. It is unresponsive.

Bottom line

So, these are the websites of 10 companies ranked as the most successful companies in the world. Unfortunately, these site designs do not reflect the status of those companies, nor the successful principles behind these businesses. We are sure there are other companies listed in Fortune 500 that have terrible websites in need of redesigning. But before doing so, they should follow the latest trends when it comes to both web design and online communication.

We hope this article convinced you that there is always something to improve, even if you are a top-tier company.

Read More at 10+ Fortune 500 Companies That Should Invest In New Websites

from Web Design Ledger https://webdesignledger.com/10-fortune-500-companies-that-should-invest-in-new-websites/

My Journey Of Learning Programming Through Flatiron School #36

My name is Mason Ellwood, and I’m currently working on Flatiron School’s Online Full Stack Web Development Program. Each week, I’ll be writing about my experience, what I’m learning, and tips on learning to code.

A few days I was at church with my family, it was like any other service that I have attended to. When I left the building I noticed that my friends dad from a long time ago decided to visit that Sunday. I went over to talk to him a bit, while my mom and dad were visiting and he mentioned that he just got a full-time job with the U of A as a civil engineering professor. He also happened to mention his son just began working at Amazon up in Seattle as a developer. After telling him what I was up to he told me to get into contact with his son again, as well as himself once I was close to finishing up school so they could ask around for me.

The next week we threw a “My mom doesn’t have cancer anymore party!” or some called it “Go to hell mantel cell!” (she had aggressive mantle cell lymphoma). But most did not get the joke so we decided to go with the first. There I met Mindy, a long friend of my family who I have not seen in ages. I asked how her daughter and was doing and she said they just moved to the Tempe area and her husband just got a job at a code academy. After like before, telling her what I was up to, working through The Flatiron School course material, she told me to contact her daughter about the possibility of working with them.

Roughly the same story happened with a few others, over the course of a month.

I guess I am not writing this as a “look at me and my connections” but to show an example of me stepping out of my box and being able to share and be open and willing to share what I am up to with others. You are not alone in this world as a training developer, and people, as well as your community, want to see you succeed.

Showing interest and reaching out as an open ended inquiry was how I landed my first web development job. I interviewed with him knowing absolutely nothing, and because he saw I was driven enough to give it a chance, he trained me. You would be amazed at what will fall into your lap as long as you are open with others about your interest.

Read More at My Journey Of Learning Programming Through Flatiron School #36

from Web Design Ledger https://webdesignledger.com/my-journey-of-learning-programming-through-flatiron-school-36/

30+ Free Instagram Tools to Help You Grow Your Following

More than 700 million people use Instagram and 400 million of those users check the app daily.

With such a large audience, and some incredibly business friendly updates such as Instagram Ads, Stories, and Business Tools, Instagram is becoming a must-have channel in many social media marketing strategies.

So how can you stand out from the crowd and grow your Instagram following?

We’ve previously shared proven tactics for growing your following and easy ways to increase your organic reach. And this time, we would love to share a big list of free Instagram tools that’ll help you to grow your following.

Going beyond the usual photo editing tools, we’ll also be sharing tools for finding the best hashtags to use, running Instagram contests, displaying your Instagram posts on your website, and more.

Let’s dive right in.

30+ Free Instagram Tools to Help You Grow Your Following

30+ free Instagram tools to help you grow your following

It’s wonderful to think that there are so many free tools available to help you grow your Instagram following.

Here’s a round up of over 30 free Instagram tools that can help you with your Instagram marketing, everything from creating amazing Instagram posts and stories to finding the best hashtags, to planning your Instagram schedule, to analyzing your Instagram performance.

Note: Some of the tools mentioned below have limited features on their free plan and offer more features in their paid plans.

1. Photo Editor by Aviary

Photo Editor by Aviary is one of the most comprehensive and highly recommended photo editing apps. With the app, you can enhance a photo with a single tap, add effects and stickers, draw, add text, and more.

There are over one-thousand free photo effects, stickers, and frames in the app but more are available for purchase if you’d like to expand your library.

Photo Editor by Aviary is available on Android, iOS, and Windows, which means you can most likely use it regardless of which smartphone you’re using.

2. PicFlow

PicFlow

With PicFlow, you can easily create 15-second video slideshows for Instagram in three quick steps:

  1. Select your photos
  2. Select a music
  3. Set the timing of each photo by tapping

If you would like to make longer videos, remove the (tiny) watermark, or unlock more transitions between photos, you can purchase them from within the app for less than $3.

Pic Flow is available on Android and iOS.

3. Canva

Canva

Canva is one of our favorite free design tools for creating images for social media, blog posts, and more.

The team at Canva has created many amazing Instagram stories templates that you can customize. The templates come in the ideal dimensions so you can focus on the design and not worry about getting the aspect ratio and size right.

Just pick a template and change the text, images, and background to your liking.

(Canva has an iOS app for those who like to design on the go. Or you can use it to download your designs to your mobile phone directly.)

4. Adobe Spark

Adobe Spark

Adobe Spark is another free design tool that we love at Buffer.

Here’s a unique feature of Adobe Spark that I like: just by turning a dial in the editor, I can get different design recommendations for my caption.

You can learn more about how to create Instagram stories with Adobe Spark and get 10 free Instagram stories templates here.

5. StoriesAds

StoriesAds

StoriesAds is an online tool for creating Instagram Stories ads (and good-looking vertical videos).

It provides several templates you can work with so that you don’t have to create a video from scratch. The intuitive video editor also prompts you about the things you have to change to customize the video.

As it is stated on the site that it is “Free for a limited time”, you might have to pay to use the tool in the future.

6 – 9. Other content creation tools

  1. InstaSize (Android, iOS, and Windows)
  2. PicPlayPost (AndroidiOS, and Windows)
  3. Quick (Android and iOS)
  4. Studio Design (Android and iOS)

If you are interested in knowing more mobile apps for creating content, you might like our roundup of 26 apps to help you create epic content on your smartphone.

10. Buffer

Buffer for Instagram

Planning your Instagram posts in advance can help you save time and ensure that your profile is well-curated and consistent.

As you might know, Instagram doesn’t allow third-party tools to post directly to Instagram, unlike most other social media platforms. While Buffer can’t help you post on your behalf, we would love to help you plan and schedule posting reminders.

On the free plan, you can plan your Instagram marketing for one account. If you would like to connect multiple Instagram accounts or get the analytics, you could give Buffer for Business a go.

GET STARTED WITH BUFFER FOR INSTAGRAM >>>

Section separator

Buffer for Instagram is Here: 8 Ways to Get Your Best Instagram Marketing Results with Buffer

Section separator

11. Display Purposes

Display Purposes

Display Purposes is a great tool for finding the best hashtags to use for your Instagram posts.

Simply type in a few hashtags related to your Instagram post and Display Purposes will generate a list of hashtags that are relevant and popular. It also filters out banned and spammy hashtags.

You can then manually select the hashtags you want to use or let Display Purposes pick what it thinks might be the best combination of hashtags.

12. Focalmark

Focalmark

Focalmark is very similar to Display Purposes, except that the suggested hashtags are generated from a list of handpicked hashtags (and it’s a mobile app).

Focalmark is available on Android and iOS.

13. AutoHash

AutoHash

AutoHash uses its computer vision algorithms to recommend the best hashtags to use.

Select a photo in the app and AutoHash will analyze the objects in your photo and suggest relevant hashtags. If you have your GPS turned on, it will also suggest location-based hashtags.

AutoHash is currently available on Android only.

14. UNUM

UNUM wants to help you design your perfect Instagram gallery.

The visual planner in the app allows you to see how your gallery would look like after you post your next few photos. You can also edit your photos and videos, draft your caption and hashtags, and schedule your posts with the app.

In its free plan, you get 18 grids to plan your posts and 500 photo and video uploads per month, which I believe are sufficient for small-to-medium businesses. If you would like to have more planning grids and a higher upload limit, UNUM offers two paid subscription plans at $2.99 and $6.99 per month.

UNUM is available on iOS and Android (in beta currently).

15. Later

Later

Later is a popular marketing platform for Instagram, which allows you to visually plan and schedule your Instagram posts.

Just like Buffer, at your scheduled times, Later will send you a notification via its mobile app, prompting you to post on Instagram.

On the free plan, you can schedule up to 30 photos per month, search and repost user-generated content (UGC), and get basic analytics.

16 – 17. Other planning tools

  1. Hootsuite
  2. Sprout Social

18. Repost for Instagram

Repost for Instagram

Repost for Instagram lets you repost an Instagram post on your Instagram account with just a few taps while also giving credit to the post owner. It is available on Android and iOS.

Before you repost any photos or videos, remember to get permission from the post owner and give her or him credit in your caption. This is required by Instagram’s Term of Use and is doing right by the amazing creators and businesses on Instagram.

To get permission for reposting the post, you can use any one of the following ways:

  • Send the post owner a direct message
  • Comment on the post
  • Connect via email

Some people do ask for a fee for using their photos since it’s part of their livelihood. Be sure to iron out such details before reposting any Instagram post.

If you are using the Buffer mobile app — Android or iOS, you can also easily add a repost into your Buffer queue after you have gotten the permission to repost it.

19. ShortStack

ShortStack

We have found that hosting giveaway contests on Instagram is a great way to drive engagement and reach on Instagram.

ShortStack has a tool for organizing user-generated content (UGC) contests, where participants enter by posting a photo with your hashtag on Instagram. ShortStack will then collect and display the UGC, which can help you increase your brand.

On the free plan, you can host an unlimited number of contests and collect up to 100 entries. ShortStack also has paid plans if you want to collect more entries and get more advanced features.

20. Gleam

Gleam

Gleam takes a slightly different approach to social media contests. It has an Instagram widget which you can add to your website and drive visitors to your Instagram account.

For example, you could require people to follow you on Instagram or view a particular Instagram post to participate in your contest.

On the free plan, you can host an unlimited number of contests, accept an unlimited number of entries, and select up to 10 winners. If you would like to get more features such as adding a feature image and customizing your widget, Gleam has two paid plans: Pro ($39 per month) and Business ($149 per month).

21. Feed Them Social

Feed Them Social

Feed Them Social is a WordPress plugin for displaying your social media feeds on your website. By having your Instagram feed on your website, you could encourage your visitors to check out and follow your Instagram account.

According to reviews of the plugin, it takes only a few clicks to set up the feed and the team provides excellent, timely support.

You can see a demo of our Instagram feed here.

22 – 24. Other WordPress plugins

  1. Instagram Feed
  2. AccessPress Instagram Feed
  3. Instagram Feed WD

25. Instagram Insights

Instagram Insights

Instagram Insights is the Instagram analytics for users with a business profile.

In there, you can see the performance of your Instagram posts and stories and get insights about your followers such as when they are active on Instagram.

If you would like to learn more about Instagram Insights, we went more in-depth into the metrics you can get and the things you could do with your Instagram analytics in our Instagram analytics guide.

26. Squarelovin

Squarelovin

If you don’t have a business profile on Instagram, you could use an Instagram analytics tool like Squarelovin.

Squarelovin has a free Instagram insights tool that provides you with your engagement and growth metrics, shows your posting history, and suggests the best times to post.

27 – 30+. Other analytics tools

  1. Keyhole
  2. Union Metrics Instagram account checkup

For more Instagram analytics tools, check out our Instagram analytics guide where we share seven more free Instagram analytics tools.

Section separator

What’s your favorite free Instagram tool?

Growing an Instagram following is challenging. But with the right tools, it can become much easier to create quality content, engage your followers, and analyze your performance — which will help you grow your following.

What’s your favorite free Instagram tool that I’ve missed in this post? It’ll be great if you want to give it a shout out below and share what you like about it!

Thanks!

Image credit: Unsplash and the respective tools

from Social https://blog.bufferapp.com/free-instagram-tools

How To Learn To Code Without Losing Your Mind

How To Learn To Code Without Losing Your Mind

Knowing how to program is one of the most valuable skills you can have in today’s world, regardless if you’re doing it for career purposes or for the sole reason of practicing your brain. Coding is just like any other language, so it can be troublesome for you if you’re just starting but once you get good at it – you’ll be able to write it without even thinking about it. Today, there are tons of books and resources that can teach you to code, but doing it without stress and negativity is the sole purpose of this guide. So if you’re looking to get positive about your coding skills, read on.

Choose Your Language

learn to code

For starters, you should decide on one coding language you’ll invest your time into learning. A simple fact that you should be aware of is that there are no best coding languages, but there are languages that are friendlier for beginners. Once you’ve wrapped your mind around one language and learned it, it’ll be fairly easy to pick up another one and learn it much quicker than the first one. Your choice of language also might depend on what you want to do with it – whether it’s software development for which you might want to pick up Java, or iOS app coding for which you’ll need Swift.

Whichever you choose, don’t jump on another until you’re confident that you’ve mastered it.

Figure Out a Learning Method That Works Best For You

There is no one recipe for learning to code, so you need to know what works best for you. It’s always good to have a primary method and supplement it with secondary ones. So for example, if you’re a good listener and want to learn from Youtube videos, you might want to supplement your knowledge with a book about coding. Here are some of the methods you can use to learn to program.

  • Online Coding Courses – some people just work best when they’re told what to do and checked upon regularly, so if you’re having problems with self-discipline signing up for a course like this might be a good idea, as you’ll get more motivated than by trying to go through it on your own.

There’s an abundance of these courses online, and some of them are even free. Just check the reviews before signing up, just to be sure.

  • Youtube videos – Today, you can learn just about anything just from watching various videos from the people already skilled at the craft. It’s a good and free way to learn to code, just as long as you can sit, watch and repeat all day long.
  • Books – even though it’s the old fashioned way, coding hasn’t changed much and all the books that cover it are still pretty much viable even today. They tend to cover the logic aspects of coding a bit better than watching the videos, so you might actually figure out why you’re doing something – which is extremely important. When it comes to coding, you want to avoid doing anything that you don’t understand, because once you are in front of the same problem again – you’ll just be stuck again.
  • Figure It Out Yourself – many of the best programmers out there are self-taught. They were presented with a problem and tried to bypass it, after which they moved on to a bigger problem. You should always be learning while doing it anyway, but if you’re the kind of person who likes to do it their own way – you might want to try to just manage your way through.

 

It’s important that you listen to yourself when it comes to choosing a method because only you know what style suits your needs.

Record Your Results

record your results

You must be aware by now that learning to code will be a long process, which is why it’s important to record everything that you’ve done. People often find themselves losing motivation because they can’t feel their progress. This is why you need to remind yourself from time to time just how far you’ve come when it comes to programming – and looking at your first lines of code will do just that, tell you how awesome you are right now. You may think this is a minor thing, but it’s actually extremely important to keep you motivated throughout the process.

Staying Motivated

stay motivated

Motivation is the key to learning just about anything and it’s imperative to know for what reasons you’re learning it. If your reason is that you want to make a career out of it, maybe you should take a step back and set yourself some lower goals for the beginning. Sure, making a career out of it can be your final goal, but for starters, you should just take one step at a time and try to learn as much as possible. Best motivation comes out of successfully completing objectives and that’s the main reason why you’ll want to start thinking small. If you just started out and want to code an AAA video game, you’ll fail miserably and give up. Take smaller steps, improve your skills, and one day you might just be a part of something like that.

Set Strict Deadlines and Respect Them

When it comes to coding, many beginners will just try to do a bunch of projects and drop-out in the middle in favor of another project. Trying things out is fine, as long as you finish everything you started. Do one project at a time and set yourself some deadlines. Imagine if you were already employed, you’d have a deadline for each of the projects you work on. And while deadlines can be a pain when you’re employed, they are a great thing to teach you some self-discipline, a skill you’ll need plenty of when it comes to programming. Not to mention that if you don’t finish your projects, you might miss out on some valuable knowledge you’ll need for other projects as well.

Read Error Messages

read error messages

While computer users quickly get away from error messages whenever they see them, programmers should actually read them because they contain valuable input that will help you fix the errors. A lot of times these messages will tell you exactly what’s wrong, so always take the time and read any new ones you run into. This is also a great practice for your problem-solving skills – you always need to know what the problem is before trying to fix it. Error messages aren’t your punishment, they are your friends and they are trying to help you do things the right way.

Socialize With Other Programmers

Having someone you can talk to about the code you’re trying to write can be invaluable. Just talking about programming can get you to think about it in a more positive light, so find a friend you can share your thoughts with. It will also help you to know that they’re struggling with certain problems as well, and if you’re able to help them – this will motivate you even further to keep at it. That’s why even companies like Webdel WordPress Developer Sydney encourage their employees to socialize with each other even outside of work.

The Right and the Wrong Approach

Beginners often try to copy parts of the code from another source while they’re trying to do random things in order to complete the project. This is bad, not because you’re copying the line of code, but because you won’t figure out what’s the purpose of it without doing it yourself. This will lead to gaps in your knowledge, and you’ll be likely to give up once you come to a problem that requires knowledge that you skipped on. Always take the time and analyze the problem at hand, and if you can’t come up with a solution – read about it and find out how and why. By doing this, you’ll make sure you understand everything that you’re doing, which in itself is invaluable when it comes to programming.

Play Games for Programmers

The fact is, no matter what you’re learning, there’s no better and quicker way to do it than through playing games. Same goes for coding, and you can use many of these games to practice your skills and get better at it.

  • CheckiO – a game you can play in your browser, it requires you to solve problems in JavaScript or Python in order to advance through the game.
  • CodeMonkey – this one’s mostly used for kids, but if you’re a beginner you can actually learn some code by playing this game.
  • Codewars – this isn’t really a game, more like collaborative challenge solving for programmers. It’s a great way to master the art and it supports many of the languages.
  • Code Combat – A community-based platform, it’s all about learning how to code while playing through a real game.

There are many other games that you can use, it all depends on which ones suit you and your preferred language best. Playing these games will help you start thinking like a programmer and you’ll be able to practice your brain all while keeping yourself entertained.

Find a Mentor

Having a mentor is a great way to pick up on their way of thinking and replicate it, but only through understanding. Contrary to the popular belief, coding is almost always done by more than one person so you’ll want to learn to work with someone and share your methods and insights. Today, programming community is very open and willing to help out the beginners, so it shouldn’t be too hard to find someone who’d mentor you through the process. And once you’ve mastered the language, you should mentor someone else – because it’s a great way for retaining information.

Break Someone Else’s Code

This is one of the best techniques to learn to code, it’s basically reverse-engineering an existing code in order to better understand how it works. Like with coding games, the key here is to change one thing at a time and checking what actually changes when you do it. There’s plenty of open code on the web you can practice on and when you reach a point where you can improve it – you’ll know you’ve made it.

Conclusion

Some people will learn to code faster, some slower, but everyone can do it. Don’t get depressed if you’re in the latter group because it’s only natural and it won’t really matter once you reach a certain point. If you really want to learn to code, the time you’ve invested will definitely pay off if you just keep at it and push your own boundaries. It’s a long journey and you’ll have your doubts while you’re learning, but always keep in mind that there’s no right or wrong way to code – and the best way is your own way.    

Read More at How To Learn To Code Without Losing Your Mind

from Web Design Ledger https://webdesignledger.com/learn-code-without-losing-mind/

The Ideal Image Sizes for Your Social Media Posts: Guidelines for All 6 Major Social Networks

This post was originally published in 2016 and has been updated with the latest ideal image sizes for the various social media platforms, as of July 2017.

You’ve got all the great tools to create engaging images for social media. You know what the brain loves about visuals and how to build something beautiful to drive engagement. You’re all set to make something great!

One last thing: How exactly should your image look so it fits in the News Feed, timeline, or stream?

There’s so much to consider in creating great images for social media—for me, the size and shape tend to get locked in before I even realize what’s happened. Yet the size and shape — the height, width, and orientation — are the elements that most influence how an image will appear in a social media stream.

Fortunately, there are some answers out there on how to create ideal images that show up consistently great in your audience’s timelines. We’ve collected all the answers here, along with our favorite two templates to fit any network. 

ideal-image-sizes

Ideal image sizes for social media

Image sizes are a huge topic to cover.

There are ideal image sizes for cover photos and profile pictures, Facebook ads, and Twitter cards. Several in-depth blog posts have tackled an overview of what’s best in all these many different spots. Here is one of my favorites:

Most of the major social media channels like Facebook and Twitter now give you added control over how your profile picture and cover photo look. You get some really neat tools to resize and scale these pictures until they’re pixel perfect.

Here’s the process for a Facebook cover photo, for example.

fb-cover

For ideal sizes on cover photos and profile pictures, I’d highly recommend the site mentioned above. It has got it all covered.

I’d love for this post to focus specifically on the social media images you share with your updates, either as image attachments or as links.

Looking for a particular social platform? Try clicking one of these categories below to jump to the relevant section:

The best sizes for sharing images on social media

We’ve long been interested in the impact of social media images for engagement, retweets, clicks, and more. We found that tweets with images receive 150 percent more retweets than those without.

One of the big questions for me is how you get an engaging image to look its best when it’s in a stream, timeline, or News Feed?

What’s the best — and maybe even the easiest — way to go about it?

In general, here are the best sizes for sharing images on social media. (Click on any link here to jump to the details for a specific network.)

Facebook – 1,200 x 628

Twitter – 1,024 x 576

Instagram – 1,080 x 1,080

LinkedIn – 552 x 368

Pinterest – 600 x 900

Google+ – 800 x 320

Our two favorite image size templates that cover most networks

In experimenting with the fastest, easiest way to create images we know will work well in social media feeds, we came across a couple of image sizes that became our go-tos: one size for horizontal (landscape) images and one for vertical (portrait) images.

  • Horizontal (landscape) – 1,024 x 512
  • Vertical (portrait) – 800 x 1,200

One of the simplest ways we’ve found for creating the 1,024 x 512-pixel images is to use Pablo. You can create an image in under 30 seconds and share directly to Twitter, Facebook, and Buffer.

We use the horizontal size for sharing to Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google+.

We use the vertical size for sharing to Pinterest.

(We have also recently been experimenting with square images — 1024 pixels wide by 1024 pixels tall.)

The horizontal size isn’t quite spot on. But that’s alright because, as you’ll read below, most platforms now adjust the height of the images accordingly without cropping the images. Even when they do crop, we’ve found that it’s close enough where no important bits get cropped.

Section separator

Ideal image sizes for Facebook posts

Sharing images to Facebook

The orientation of your image—whether it’s horizontal (landscape), vertical (portrait), or square—will determine which dimensions Facebook uses to show your image.

If you upload a square image to share, it will be 476 pixels square. This’ll be the case no matter what size square you upload, be it an 800 x 800 image or a 400 x 400 image (the smaller images might appear a bit blurry when they are sized up to 476 pixels square).

Facebook Image Size - Square

If you upload a horizontal (landscape) image, it will be scaled to 476 pixels wide and the height will be adjusted accordingly.

Facebook Image Size - Horizontal (Landscape)

If you upload a vertical (portrait) image, it will be scaled to 476 pixels wide and the height will be adjusted accordingly but to a maximum of 714 pixels tall. Facebook will crop away the bottom of the image beyond the 714 pixels.

Facebook Image Size - Vertical (Portrait)

If you plan on sharing multiple images in the same Facebook post, there are some great insights at Have Camera Will Travel that cover all the various options that ensue here.

Sharing links to Facebook (and the images that come with them)

If you share a link to Facebook, the image associated with the link can be displayed in a number of ways. Again, all depends on the image size (pixel width and height) and shape (orientation).

Images previews for shared links are scaled to fill a box of 476 pixels wide by 249 pixels tall.

Facebook Image Size - Link

When choosing an image to go along with a link, Facebook looks at the Open Graph tags for a page, specifically the og:image tag, which specifies the image that Facebook should use when sharing in the News Feed.

You can add the og:image tag manually into the <head> section on every page of your website, or you can try out a plugin like Yoast SEO for WordPress, which handles the code and implementation for you. (We’re big fans of the Yoast plugin for the Buffer blog.)

If you are creating an image to be used in the og:image tag for your link, keep in mind that anything outside of 476 x 249 pixels will be cropped from the top and bottom in order to fit.

Facebook Image Size - Link (Cropped)

Additionally, if the link you share does not have the proper og:image tags installed or the image in the tag is not large enough, Facebook will not display it full-width or might not display an image preview at all. If it does, a thumbnail image will be placed in a small box to the left of the link text.

For most all image orientations — square, horizontal (landscape), and vertical (portrait) — the thumbnail will be scaled and cropped to fit a 158 x 158-pixel square.

Facebook Image Size - Link (Small)

If you add multiple images to a link post, Facebook will automatically convert it into a carousel post. Each image is cropped to fit a 300 x 300-pixel square.

Facebook Image Size - Link (Multiple Images)

What we’ve found to be a great solution for creating and sharing images to Facebook is to build an image that is 1024 x 512. While this doesn’t quite fit the dimensions above perfectly, it is large enough to look great on retina displays (where the pixel density is greater) and large enough so as to fit with the full-width areas in the News Feed.

(And as you’ll see below, this image size is ideal for Twitter as well.)

If you want to make sure that your photos display in the highest possible quality, Facebook has some advice for you.

Section separator

Ideal image sizes for tweets

Twitter images used to appear on the timeline at 506 pixels wide by 253 pixels tall. Now, Twitter images appear bigger and less cropped when viewed on a desktop.

Sharing a single image to Twitter

On the desktop, regardless of the orientation of your image — horizontal (landscape), vertical (portrait), or square —it will be scaled to 506 pixels wide and the height will be adjusted accordingly but to a maximum of 747 pixels tall. The top and bottom of the image will be cropped away.

So a square image will nicely take up all the space available.

Twitter Image Size - Square

But if you upload an image that is smaller than 506 pixels wide by 253 pixels tall, there will be a whitespace to the right of the image.

Note: On mobile, images will be cropped into a horizontal rectangle. From my tests, it seems that 1024 pixels wide by 576 pixels tall is the ideal Twitter image size for displaying your image fully on mobile. (This dimension also works great on the desktop.)

Twitter Image Size - Mobile

Sharing multiple images to Twitter

Twitter also allows you to upload up to four images to each tweet. The images used to be displayed as four equal horizontal rectangles but now, they are cropped into squares and the first image you upload will appear bigger.

Twitter Image Size - Multiple Images

The featured image will be scaled to various sizes depending on the number of photos you upload and cropped into a square:

  • Two images: Scaled to 252 pixels tall and cropped to 252 pixels wide
  • Three images: Scaled to 337 pixels tall and cropped to 337 pixels wide
  • Four images: Scaled to 379 pixels tall and cropped to 379 pixels wide

The remaining images will also be scaled and cropped into squares.

Note: On mobile, images will be cropped differently. Here’s an overview of the aspect ratios, from Twitter:

Twitter Image Size - Multiple Images (Mobile)

Image sizes for Twitter cards

Images are also present in each of the nine different Twitter Cards. If you’re interested in trying out something like a lead generation card or a product card, Twitter did a great job of breaking down the images sizes for each type of card. I’d like to get a bit deeper into a couple of specific ones that seem key for content sharing.

  • Summary card
  • Summary card with large image

Summary cards show a headline, description, link, and photo when you share a URL from a site that contains the appropriate Twitter Cards code. All this information is pulled via HTML tags, often the same ones that are being used by Facebook to display links.

(The Yoast SEO WordPress plugin mentioned above also includes support for Twitter Cards.)

Each type of summary card contains a thumbnail or featured image.

For summary cards:

The image must be a minimum size of 144 pixels wide by 144 pixels tall and must be less than 5MB in file size.

The image will also be cropped into a 125×125-pixel square.

Twitter Image Size - Summary Card

For summary cards with large images:

The image should be at least 300 pixels wide by 157 pixels tall. Image must be less than 5MB in size.

The image will be cropped into a rectangle with a 2:1 aspect ratio.

Twitter Image Size - Summary Card with Large Image

If you’re curious how your images might look with Twitter Cards, you can enter your link into Twitter’s free card validator to get a quick preview.

Section separator

Ideal image sizes for Instagram photos

Sharing photos to Instagram

Instagram used to be all about the square image. However, you can now upload landscape (horizontal) or portrait (vertical) photos as well. Here are the best sizes for Instagram’s three image types:

  • Square image: 1080 pixels wide by 1080 pixels tall
  • Vertical image: 1080 pixels wide by 1350 pixels tall
  • Horizontal image: 1080 pixels wide by 566 pixels tall

Square

Instagram Image Size - Square

Vertical (Portrait)

Instagram Image Size - Vertical (Portrait)

Horizontal (Landscape)

Instagram Image Size - Horizontal (Landscape)

The thumbnail photos that appear on one’s profile page are 293 pixels wide by 293 pixels tall.

Sharing Instagram stories

Instagram stories are displayed at an aspect ratio of 9:16.  So the ideal size for Instagram stories is 1080 pixels wide by 1920 pixels tall.

So the ideal size for Instagram stories is 1080 pixels wide by 1920 pixels tall.

Instagram Image Size - Stories

Section separator

Ideal image sizes for LinkedIn posts

Sharing to your LinkedIn personal profile

According to a moderator of LinkedIn’s help forum, the ideal image size is 522 pixels wide by 368 pixels tall.

If you upload an image directly, the image will appear at a maximum width of 552 pixels and a maximum height of 368 pixels. The image will be cropped to fit this box.

It seems that if you upload a landscape image, LinkedIn will scale it to a height of 368 pixels and crop the sides. If you upload a portrait or square image, LinkedIn will scale it to a width of 552 pixels and crop the bottom of the image.

(LinkedIn only crops the image preview. People can still see the full image by clicking on it.)

LinkedIn Image Size

When you share links and articles to LinkedIn, the image preview will be scaled and cropped to fit a box of 520 pixels wide by 272 pixels tall.

LinkedIn Image Size - Link

Sharing to your LinkedIn Company Page

Images shared to your LinkedIn Company Page will look slightly different than images shared to your personal profile. Images will be scaled to fit into a 436-pixels-wide-by-228-pixels tall rectangle.

LinkedIn Company Page Image Size

LinkedIn doesn’t seem to crop images when they don’t fit that box. It scales the images and adds gray spaces accordingly.

If an image is too wide (e.g. landscape), LinkedIn will scale it to 436 pixels wide, adjust the height accordingly, and add gray spaces to the top and bottom of the image. If an image is too tall (e.g. square or portrait), LinkedIn will scale it to 228 pixels tall, adjust the width accordingly, and add gray spaces to the left and right of the image.

LinkedIn Company Page Image Size with Gray Spaces

When links are shared to your Company Page, the image preview will be scaled and cropped to fit a box of 436 pixels wide by 228 pixels tall.

LinkedIn Company Page Image Size - Link

This is a different size from when links are shared to your personal profile.

The good news? It’s almost the same aspect ratio as the image preview of links shared on your personal profile. So the same image should scale nicely for both image previews of links on your personal profile and Company Page.

Sharing to your LinkedIn Showcase Pages

LinkedIn’s Showcase Pages, a feature that allows companies to create pages based on offshoots of their brand (for instance, Adobe created pages for Adobe Creative Cloud, Adobe Marketing Cloud, etc.), display images in a slightly different size but resizes them in the same ways:

  • On these pages, images and image preview for links will appear in a box of 366 pixels wide by 191 pixels tall (roughly the same aspect ratio as those above).
  • Images will be scaled and gray spaces will be added accordingly.
  • Image preview for links will be scaled and cropped to fit the box.

LinkedIn Showcase Page Image Size

According to eDigital, the ideal image size for your LinkedIn Company Page is 1200 pixels wide by 628 pixels tall. This size seems to work great for all the various image types — images on your personal profile, Company Page, and Showcase Pages.

LinkedIn uses the same Open Graph tags as Facebook and other social networks. If you’ve got your site well-optimized for Facebook links, then you should be good to go for LinkedIn as well.

Images in LinkedIn articles

One additional way to share content on LinkedIn is by publishing articles that appear on people’s home pages. LinkedIn built a substantial publishing platform for this content, which includes the ability to add featured images to the articles.

In the home page feed, the featured image on a LinkedIn article has the same size as that of a link shared on LinkedIn — 520 pixels wide by 272 pixels tall.

LinkedIn Image Size - Article

The recommended size for the cover image at the top of the article is 744 pixels wide by 400 pixels tall.

LinkedIn Image Size - Article Cover

(Cropping for these images occurs from the outside in, so the very middle of the picture will be what’s displayed in the smaller thumbnails.)

Section separator


Ideal image sizes for Pinterest Pins

There are a couple of different places where a Pinned image can appear on Pinterest.

In the feed, Pinterest images have a width of 236 pixels. The height scales accordingly, to a maximum of 800 pixels. If a user clicks to expand, the cropped portion of the image will appear.

Pinterest Image Size - Feed

If you click to expand a Pinned image, the image will have a width of 564 pixels. The height, again, scales accordingly.

Pinterest Image Size - Expanded

Beyond these two places, the other spots that you might find a pin include the cover for Pinterest boards and in side ads for recommended and related Pins.

According to Pinterestthe best aspect ratio for Pinterest images is 2:3, with a minimum width of 600 pixels. 

So this might raise the question (one that I’ve asked a lot before): What is aspect ratio?

It’s how the width and the height of an image relate to one another.

For instance, a 2:3 aspect ratio could be

  • 600 pixels wide by 900 pixels tall
  • 800 pixels wide by 1,200 pixels tall

Section separator

Ideal image sizes for Google+ posts

Sharing images to Google+

If you upload an image directly to Google+, the image will appear on the feed at a maximum width of 431 pixels. The height of the image will scale according to the new width.

Google+ Image Size - Feed

Clicking through to the update URL, the image will be 530 pixels wide, maximum, with a height that scales accordingly.

Sharing links to Google+

When you share links and articles to Google+, the featured photos appear at a maximum width of 426 pixels also (same as above). The height scales accordingly.

Google+ Image Size - Link

According to Google, the image must be sized as follows:

  • must be at least 400px wide.
  • must have an aspect ratio no wider than 5:2.

From that, I think it’s safe to say that 800 pixels wide by 320 pixels tall will be an ideal image size for Google+.

Similarly to the other social channels mentioned here, Google+ pulls in images from URLs using Open Graph tags. If the image used in the Open Graph is not at least 400 pixels wide or if Open Graph tags do not exist for a URL, Google+ may instead place a thumbnail image to the left of the update. This thumbnail is 110 x 110 square.

Summary

I hope these image size overviews might be useful for you. We continue to learn lots about what’s best for all the different social networks, and I’ll be happy to continue updating this post with all our latest findings.

(I’m also eager to experiment with mobile sizes as well!)

Is there anything we can add to this resource to make it more useful for you? What has your experience been with sharing different image sizes to social media?

I’d love to hear from you in the comments!

Image sources: IconFinder, Pablo, Startup Stock Photos, Blurgrounds

from Social https://blog.bufferapp.com/ideal-image-sizes-social-media-posts

6 Web Design Trends You Should Forget

Do you remember those websites back in the 90s, and how they first landed on your screen? Do you remember Comic Sans, Scrolling Marquees, Hit Counters, Animated GIFs, or “Under construction” pages? If so, you are right on track! I was reminiscing these past days about these…

Well, a lot has changed by now, especially in the creative industry. Technology has advanced; marketing and communication paradigms have changed, bringing along innovation within web design. Therefore, websites have become increasingly exciting, insofar as unconventional features that are primarily designed to serve content to their users.

Some of these features have become trendsetters for many years. Others simply appeared and passed, barely touching the market for a short while. Trends come and go. There will always be a new trend coming along superseding the one in existence. That’s also the case for website designs, although we never know what becomes novelty and groundbreaking. Having all these cool functions to explore, many website owners adapt to whatever trend comes their way. Unfortunately, others are still stuck in the 90s.

Speaking of which, have you surfed various sites lately? Because I have. And I have noticed that while most sites adhere to the latest web design trends, others fail miserably at maintaining an updated design and implementing it properly.

Have you landed on a website with infinite scrolling, but without any function to go right back to the top (except for scrolling endlessly upwards again)? Some websites have features that are the death of them – slow loading pages, missing or hidden navigation menu, and even pushy CTAs that burst right in front of your eyes, cajoling you to subscribe to their never-ending newsletters and freebies. With that being said, I have listed below some previous design trends that should remain buried forever.

1. FLASH     

This is the first trend I recommend that you forget about. Start adopting the new HTML5 or other ways to animate your website. It simply is too outdated. Even if Flash played an important role in the rise of the Internet, it has recently become a bad choice for any modern web design and may have a negative impact on your website search engine optimization (SEO).

Although many websites still use it, there are many reasons why you should drop it.

1.1. Flash does not work on mobiles

If you incorporate Flash into your website, it will be unusable on mobile devices. It might even cause frustration among your audience. Taking into consideration that more than 60% of the Internet traffic is made using mobile phones and tablets, I think you should pay more attention to this aspect.

1.2. Flash is bad for SEO

Flash does not have any URLs for the separate pages and does not allow you to monitor outbound links. Therefore, Flash-based websites don’t provide enough elements for an effective SEO. Besides, they tend to be harder to use. Hence, Google gives lower rankings to those websites.

1.3. Flash must be installed into the browser

Being a proprietary software, Flash has to be installed, as it does not come with the browser by default. Users with a browser without the plugin are prompted to install it. Otherwise it restricts access to the content that heavily relies on it.

1.4. Terrible loading time.

As I have mentioned before, Flash-based sites tend to take longer to load. Taking into consideration that Internet users are busier than ever, it’s essential to have a site with load times as short as possible. If visitors have to wait too long, they might be tempted to look elsewhere, hence your competition, for a faster site.

1.5. Serious security flaws

Flash has always been plagued with reported security issues, but the last security flaws which led Firefox to block Flash by default on all websites until the flaws were patched is the final warning. It won’t be long until other browsers do the same thing.

2. CAROUSELS

According to a usability study published by Neilson Norman Group, auto-forwarding carousels annoy users and reduce visibility. For sure, each of us viewed such sites at one time, and did not pay too much attention to those auto-forwarding pictures.

According to this study, there are a couple of reasons why these believed-to-be “cool” design features are not great for your site’s usability and conversions:

  • Automatic rotation makes users lose the control of their interactions with your website. That is particularly annoying to those with motor skill issues.
  • They create banner blindness, and are often ignored by the viewers. Take a look at the example listed below. You will notice how the image slider hardly gets any attention, especially when they are focused on their desired products.

  • In many cases, the slides rotates so fast that readers do not have time to read your texts. Especially when part of your audience has a different native language than yours. Users clearly express their frustration by saying “I didn’t have time to read it. It keeps flashing too quickly.”

 

3. COMIC SANS FONT

Surely, there are many pros and cons to using Comic Sans font. But it’s time to let it go, even if it is one of the most frequently used fonts in the world. Granted, like everything else, there are designers who love it, but also there are designers who absolutely despise it. Personally, I am somewhere in between. It looks homely and handwritten, making the perfect choice for those things we deem to be fun and liberating. It could be great for toy shops. Nevertheless, t is not the ideal choice for corporate identity, luxury brands, media, or health services.

Still, Comic Sans is rooted in a history where early word processing had a limited number of fonts by default. Thus, Comic Sans was the go-to choice for the ‘less serious of fonts’. But nowadays, tens of thousands of fonts in every imaginable personality are readily available online, paid or free of charge. I hope the previously written article about Top 9 free fonts for designers (link la articol) will be a starting point, should you need some inspiration.

4. UNDER CONSTRUCTION PAGES

A common practice throughout the history of Internet and web design has been the use of “under construction”. These were useful pages for upcoming websites or for page that were in the process of redesigning. It was awesome in the past and people liked them. But nowadays, in a fast-paced environment, you should definitely put it on the ‘Do NOT’ list.

In many cases, a website establishes the first contact between your business and your target audience. So by providing a link to a web page, you have promised to deliver something (usually content). But by simply publishing an “under construction” page, you deliver nothing but frustration and disappointment. This is not the kind of first impression you want to give your customers.

Nevertheless, please take into consideration that plain “under construction” pages do not have any content on them. So, you do not deliver any content to Google, which in turn ranks websites based on their content. Therefore, they will not rank or index your page, and this is bad for your website!

So, instead of using this terrible option, you should consider putting up a beautiful landing page with some basic info, a newsletter sign-up form, a waiting list form, or a sleek-looking countdown.

You may find some inspiration here:

 5. DRAMATIC DROP SHADOWS

Although drop shadows is a tool that adds more spatiality to your text, you should stay away from the cheap & fake lighting effects! Big, soft, dark, and distanced drop shadows are the design equivalent of a Glamor Shot lighting, and no one really believes it. Even worse, anyone with some Photoshop skills can easily recognize the default drop shadow settings when they see them.

There are many other eye-catching ways to use drop shadows. For example, to make the text more realistic with added contrast, you may use subtle shadow, blending it in with the background.

If you want to add a cool retro vibe to your text, you may use the solid hard edge shadow behind the text. This is especially true if the hard edge shadow is separated from the text slightly, as well.

For an interesting, yet simple design element that gives movement without unneeded distractions, you may use long shadows. This is a newer trend that works perfectly with the minimalist trend.

 6. BEVEL AND EMBOSS

Nothing screams 90s designs like the old default bevel and emboss effect. For non-designers, “bevel and emboss” is a Photoshop effect that can be used to create a 3-dimensional appearance.

If a millennium ago it seemed like a good idea to add a tens of thousands of effects to your typefaces for highlighting your texts, it’s time you traveled into the future. Consider getting the same effect in a different way.

For example, make the button glossy, but using a smaller inner shadow and a light outer drop shadow.

Bottom line:

The trends above serve to illustrate the idea that keeping outdated design elements can actually negatively impact your website. Thus, making a bad impression on your viewers. But you should also keep in your mind the message you want to convey. As long as you have these pointers in mind, the design style you want to use is a matter of choice. Just make sure it’s one among the newest trends.

Read More at 6 Web Design Trends You Should Forget

from Web Design Ledger https://webdesignledger.com/6-web-design-trends-you-should-forget/

Uber gets less awful for drivers in the UK by introducing in-app tips and paid waiting


Uber has introduced a slew of new features designed to keep its UK-based drivers happy. The most notable is in-app tipping, allowing riders to show appreciation to their drivers, even when they don’t have any cash on them. Here’s how it works: When you rate your driver, it’ll prompt you to give a cash tip, and suggest some amounts: £1, £2, and £5. It’ll also let you give a custom amount, if you’re feeling particularly generous. Most importantly 100-percent goes to the driver, as was confirmed to me by an Uber representative. As a frequent Uber user, I like this a…

This story continues at The Next Web

from UK – The Next Web https://thenextweb.com/apps/2017/08/14/uber-gets-less-awful-drivers-uk-introducing-app-tips-paid-waiting/

My Journey Of Learning Programming Through Flatiron School #35

flatiron school

My name is Mason Ellwood, and I’m currently working on Flatiron School’s Online Full Stack Web Development Program. Each week, I’ll be writing about my experience, what I’m learning, and tips on learning to code.

One question I have grown to loath is, is something that probably gets asked most often. Which is “what are you up to these days”….. This is a loaded question and I have a hard time answering it for some reason.

For most people around my age there life follows a track to success. Graduate high school, go to college, graduates college, get a job, then to ultimately move to the suburbs, the end. But right now I am in a weird place on my path to the suburbs. I graduated college, but I am not in grad school, but I am in school. The place that I am at currently makes sense for me; to be in this school right now. But communicating that to… say my dad has been one of the most difficult things I have ever done. Your answer to being asked may be more elaborate than mine, but I usually just tell them “I am in school, studying computer stuff”. If you are in the dev world, then you get it and all the dots connect easily, but outside of it; it’s like me looking into a car engine and trying to point stuff out.

Currently, in school, we are poking around in an ORM. An ORM stands for object relational mapping and is used to correlate sql databases to ruby classes and vice versa. This is how people build databases for their applications as well as instantiate, add, pull, and alter their databases through their program. For me to get into how this all works and how it all fits together, would take weeks. The Flatiron School does an awesome job at explaining this in a comprehensible way. Working through building out a SQLight3 database, then slowly moving towards integrating database with OO Ruby and the importance of it. One awesome lecture I watched recently I have listed below.

The video below is a code walkthrough of building out your own interactive ORM, built by Avi one of the professors and leaders at The Flatiron School.

Please watch the video and ask any questions you may have. I will try my best to answer anything you need clarification on.

Read More at My Journey Of Learning Programming Through Flatiron School #35

from Web Design Ledger https://webdesignledger.com/my-journey-of-learning-programming-through-flatiron-school-35/

Sad news: London’s Tube to get full 4G coverage by 2019


Take a trip to London, and you’ll inevitably ride the iconic Underground train network. It’s unique insofar as it’s almost entirely isolated from the outside world. No phone signals are powerful enough to penetrate through the ground and bedrock, to where the rolling stock lies. Riding it outside of rush hour is a weird sort-of bliss, where people just sit quietly and wait for their next stop; the only noise being the drum and bass bleeding from someone’s headphones. That quietness will soon be shattered, as London mayor Sadiq Khan plans to bring full 4G coverage to the Tube network,…

This story continues at The Next Web

from UK – The Next Web https://thenextweb.com/insider/2017/08/10/sad-news-londons-tube-to-get-full-4g-coverage-by-2019/

Collapsed luxury phone manufacturer Vertu is auctioning its $20,000 phones for cheap


A few months ago, iconic British phone manufacturer Vertu announced that it would enter liquidation after encountering financial difficulties. Now, it’s auctioning the contents of its UK factory, giving the world a window into tech’s most extravagant phone brand. So sad to see @Vertu factory abandoned ahead of auction today. I have many happy memories of this place. Was a UK tech jewel once. pic.twitter.com/eV5mXmGlF2 — Ben Wood (@benwood) August 10, 2017 Most people never owned a Vertu handset — the cheapest models typically cost several thousands, making them exclusively the preserve of the ultra-wealthy. The Vertu Signiature Touch, for…

This story continues at The Next Web

from UK – The Next Web https://thenextweb.com/insider/2017/08/10/collapsed-british-phone-maker-vertus-assets-are-now-on-auction/