Jon Landry

Jon Landry

December 03, 2013

@jonlandry

5 Great htaccess Tricks That You Can’t Live Without

The .htaccess fileis an extremely powerful tool for your web development arsenal.  Learning how to use it effectively will not only improve security but will improve functionality as well.

Weather it’s redirecting visitors to a temporary site, displaying a custom 404 error page or even blocking specific IP Addresses from being able to view your site, here are 5 sets of htaccess directives that every webmaster should know.

It is important to remember that editing the .htaccess file can bring your entire site down. Be sure to have a working back-up before experimenting.

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Doctor Who Sonic Screwdriver Programmable TV Remote

Finally, a universal remote that is simple to use!

Sonic Screwdriver Programmable TV Remote
The Sonic Screwdriver Programmable TV Remote in action.

Ok, so we can admit it, we’re definitely geeks here at Jonster.com, but I think this thing takes geekdom to an entirely new level.  Doctor Who is all the rage today (who knew this British icon would come back so strong?), and this is one of the coolest gadgets I’ve seen in a while.

Behold, The Sonic Screwdriver Programmable TV Remote!  As the description on ThinkGeek says, “Control your TV like The Doctor himself”.  Cool.

The Sonic Screwdriver Programmable TV Remote is just that – it’s a fully programmable, fully functional infrared remote control.  It uses programmable gestures to execute commands and has several modes including Practice, Control, Quiet, and FX.  This remote is made of hand-polished die cast metal, ABS plastic, is copper plated, and even comes with a fashionable display case!

There’s a lot more info, some demos, and ordering instructions at ThinkGeek - stuff for smart masses.

Order one at ThinkGeek!

5 ways to improve your website’s SEO and 2 ways that won’t

Like everything else with application and web development, the world of search engine optimization (SEO) has changed quite a bit over the years.

Jackson O'Keefe rankings
Jackson O’Keefe ranks at the top using real, relevant keywords.

Google still reins king, Bing is trotting far behind, and Yahoo!, like a little brother, copies everything that Bing does.  Social Media and traditional PR are major factors that drive traffic as well.

We’ll focus on generally accepted best practices as the actual algorithm that determines where you rank looks at hundreds of factors and is locked up in a secret cave somewhere.  However, I’ll list some of the low hanging fruit below that can begin to help drive your site up the ranking ladder.

Following are five ways to help improve your website’s search results and two ways that won’t.

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Jon Landry

Jon Landry

April 05, 2013

@jonlandry

To Netflix or not to Netflix

What are your thoughts on Netflix?

Netflix!

So “my friends” at Netflix really want me to come back.  About every three months or so, I receive an email asking me to come back for 1 month FREE, the latest iteration received today.

My question is - What do you all think of Netflix? The most recent email from them reads: “A lot has changed since you left - so we’d like to offer you another FREE trial!”  I know there is some exclusive Netflix material now, which might be kind of fun?  Anyone watching any of that?  Also, anyone hate it? The price seems to be right and it sure would be nice to wean off of cable.

I’m also interested in how tablet friendly it is.

Let me know!

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The Passion Pit “Take a Walk” video

Amazing cinematography, unique sound, and a strong message through the lyrics make this video a winner.

One of the best indie bands that I started listening to around 2009 is New England’s own Passion Pit.  This Cambridge, Mass. band has a very unique and you might even say giddy over all uplifting sound.

Embedded above is the video for Take a Walk, their first single from their second studio album Gossamer (2012).  This song reminds me a lot of what my grandparents probably went through while trying to make it in the land of opportunity, America.  According to Michael Angelakos who is the lead singer of Passion Pit, each verse of the song depicts a real life moment in the life of a different family member of his.

The cinematography for this video is just cool.  You basically follow the life a bouncing ball as it travels across several locations – very fluid and almost seemingly uncut.  It is creative and engaging camera work.

Enjoy!

Visit the Passion Pit website
Jon Landry

Jon Landry

April 03, 2013

@jonlandry

How to navigate a four way stop without wanting to murder that other driver

Hopefully this tip will help you navigate your next four way stop with just a little less anxiety and without wanting to kill those around you.

Right turn only - No right turn
This is often how a four way stop feels!

Navigating a four way stop seems to be a very challenging if not outright foreign concept to many here in Connecticut.  I spent a good many years driving in Washington State where there is this phenomenon known as an “uncontrolled intersection” which put simply, is basically a four way intersection where there are no stop signs and every driver has to fend for him or herself.  There are literally hundreds of these types of intersections in any given town.  I believe that by default, these types of intersections make any driver from Washington an expert on four way stops – I mean, you have to be – otherwise your vehicle or worse, you, will not survive out on the road for very long.

So, what is the actual rule / law / courtesy / common sense, etc. regarding four way stops?

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Wally The Slim Stick-On Wallet For iPhone

Now this is an accessory for the iPhone that I can actually get behind.

Ican admit that I’m a bit of a risk taker—incomprehensible to most, I’ve now had my iPhone for almost two years and I still have no protective case for it!  The reason being is, I keep it in my front pocket (I’m just a smidge too old to have it constantly glued to the palm of my hand).  I just love the slim form factor and I really don’t want to give that up.  That is, until I met Wally.

The video above is self-explanatory.  This thing is just flat out cool.  It uses “high-tech micro-suction” to cling directly to the back of your iPhone without leaving any tackiness behind and best of all; it secretly holds all of your essentials- credit cards, ID, cash, etc.  Perfect!

Get one on Kickstarter

Responsive Web Design

Responsive Web Design is here to stay (and that's a good thing).

Responsive Web Design Layout Examples
Example of Responsive Web Design Layouts

The big WebDev buzzword(s) of 2013 will be Responsive Web Design (RWD). What exactly does this mean? Well put simply, it means that your website and your content will look exactly how it was intended to look on all devices meaning any gadget ranging from a very small smart phone, to a tablet, to a high definition television or monitor will render your site correctly.  This is great stuff!

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Why choose Jonster.com?

We know there are a lot of choices out there when it comes to designing and building your website. We’d like to tell you why we stand out from the rest.

Here’s what’s in it for you:

  1. We will not nickel and dime you. We will be up front with you from the beginning setting all expectations and will work by the project price.
  2. Attention to detail. Whether it’s design, development, font layout, or just overall aesthetics.  We will give 100% attention to detail to every square inch of the project.
  3. We’re always accessible. You can always reach us via our website, social platforms or the old fashioned telephone. We will respond immediately.
  4. It’s wicked easy for you to update your own website and you most likely won’t even need us! Let us tell you all about ExpressionEngine and how it has made our clients lives so much easier.
  5. Continued relationships.  When the project is over, our relationship is not.  We will continue to work with you to make sure everything remains exactly how you expected it.
  6. We do more than just pretty websites. We can design and develop for mobile, we incorporate SEO from the beginning and ongoing (we really do it, we don’t just say we do), we help you with your web hosting and continued management. The list goes on!
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Going Live

Please pardon the few outstanding issues we have on our punch-list. We'll have them buttoned up shortly!

Well here we are. The Jonster.com site is now live on the interwebs and we couldn’t be more thrilled!  We’ve been so busy the last 12 months starting up the business, filing the paperwork, paying the taxes and fees to the State of Connecticut and doing “Portfolio Work” for much less than we should have been that we had been neglecting launching our own site. But hey, we’re here now and we’re happy!  =]

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