Blogs

  1. Pete Jenkins | Gamification Consultant | UK

    [Blog] Pete Jenkins | Gamification Consultant | UK: 5 ways employers fail with gamification–and how to avoid them

    We came across a great article over at http://hr.blr.com/ describing 5 ways employers fail with gamification and how to avoid them, we agree with their views and we hope this article may help yourself and company. Gamification has the potential to become an integral layer to all employee and customer interactions, if it’s done right. […]

    Posted 17 April 2014, 5:43 pm

  2. Pete Jenkins | Gamification Consultant | UK

    [Blog] Pete Jenkins | Gamification Consultant | UK: 25 Great Examples of Gamification in Business

    These 25 examples of gamification in use today cover a broad spectrum, but perhaps there’s something here that will spark an idea for your own gamification project… To see the 25 examples please click here

    Posted 17 April 2014, 5:25 pm

  3. Favicon Adactio: Journal

    [Blog] Adactio: Journal: Fragmentions

    Cennydd’s latest piece in A List Apart is the beautifully written Letter to a Junior Designer.

    I really like the way that Cennydd emphasises the importance of being able to explain the reasoning behind your design decisions:

    If you haven’t already, sometime in your career you’ll meet an awkward sonofabitch who wants to know why every pixel is where you put it. You should be able to articulate an answer for that person—yes, for every pixel.

    That reminds me of something I read fourteen(!) years ago that’s always stayed with me. In an interview in Digital Web magazine, Joshua Davis was asked “What would you say is beauty in design?” His answer:

    Being able to justify every pixel.

    Here’s a link to the direct quote …except that link probably won’t work for you. Not unless you’ve installed this Chrome extension.

    What the hell am I talking about? Well, this is something that Kevin Marks has been working on following on from the recent W3C annotation workshop.

    It’s called fragmentions and it builds on the work done by Eric and Simon. They proposed using CSS selectors as fragment identifiers. Kevin’s idea is to use the words within the text as anchor points (like an automatic Command+F):

    To tell these apart from an id link, I suggest using a double hash - ## for the fragment, and then words that identify the text. For example:

    http://epeus.blogspot.com/2003_02_01_archive.html##annotate+the+web

    That link will work in your browser because of this script, which Kevin has added to his site. I may well add that script to this site too.

    Fragmentions are a nice idea and—to bring it back to Cennydd’s point—nicely explained.


    Tagged with


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    Posted 17 April 2014, 3:59 pm

  4. Writing For SEO

    [Blog] Writing For SEO: Top Posts on Thursday 17 April 2014

    Have you read these?

    If you’re new to Writing For SEO, or haven’t been here for a while, these are the essential pieces of content.

    What do you think is the most useful content here?

    Thanks to DaveBleasdale for allowing me to use his image.

    Have you read these?

    Posted 17 April 2014, 2:00 pm

  5. Entrepreneurial Geekiness

    [Blog] Entrepreneurial Geekiness: 2nd Early Release of High Performance Python (we added a chapter)

    Here’s a quick book update – we just released a second Early Release of High Performance Python which adds a chapter on lists, tuples, dictionaries and sets. This is available to anyone who has bought it already (login into O’Reilly to get the update). Shortly we’ll follow with chapters on Matrices and the Multiprocessing module.

    One bit of feedback we’ve had is that the images needed to be clearer for small-screen devices – we’ve increased the font sizes and removed the grey backgrounds, the updates will follow soon. If you’re curious about how much paper is involved in writing a book, here’s a clue:

    We announce each updates along with requests for feedback via our mailing list.

    I’m also planning on running some private training in London later in the year, please contact me if this is interesting? Both High Performance and Data Science are possible.

    In related news – the PyDataLondon conference videos have just been released and you can see me talking on the High Performance Python landscape here.


    Ian applies Data Science as an AI/Data Scientist for companies in Mor Consulting, founded the image and text annotation API Annotate.io, co-authored SocialTies, programs Python, authored The Screencasting Handbook, lives in London and is a consumer of fine coffees.

    Posted 16 April 2014, 9:11 pm

  6. David Pashley.com

    [Blog] David Pashley.com: Bad Password Policies

    After the whole Heartbleed fiasco, I’ve decided to continue my march towards improving my online security. I’d already begun the process of using LastPass to store my passwords and generate random passwords for each site, but I hadn’t completed the process, with some sites still using the same passwords, and some having less than ideal strength passwords, so I spent some time today improving my password position. Here’s some of the bad examples of password policy I’ve discovered today.

    First up we have Live.com. A maximum of 16 characters from the Microsoft auth service. Seems to accept any character though.

    Screenshot from 2014-04-15 21:36:57

     

    This excellent example is from creditexpert.co.uk, one of the credit agencies here in the UK. They not only restrict to 20 characters, they restrict you to @, ., _ or |. So much for teaching people how to protect themselves online.

    Screenshot from 2014-04-15 17:38:28

    Here’s Tesco.com after attempting to change my password to ”QvHn#9#kDD%cdPAQ4&b&ACb4x%48#b”. If you can figure out how this violates their rules, I’d love to know. And before you ask, I tried without numbers and that still failed so it can’t be the “three and only three” thing. The only other idea might be that they meant “‘i.e.” rather than “e.g.”, but I didn’t test that.

    Screenshot from 2014-04-15 16:20:17

    Edit: Here is a response from Tesco on Twitter:

    Screenshot from 2014-04-16 07:47:58

    Here’s a poor choice from ft.com, refusing to accept non-alphanumeric characters. On the plus side they did allow the full 30 characters in the password.

    Screenshot from 2014-04-15 15:22:08

     

    The finest example of a poor security policy is a company who will remain nameless due to their utter lack of security. Not only did they not use HTTPS, they accepted a 30 character password and silently truncated it to 20 characters. The reason I know this is because when I logged out and tried to log in again and then used the “forgot my password” option, they emailed me the password in plain text.

    I have also been setting up two-factor authentication where possible. Most sites use the Google Authenticator application on your mobile to give you a 6 digit code to type in in addition to your password. I highly recommend you set it up too. There’s a useful list of sites that implement 2FA and links to their documentation at http://twofactorauth.org/.

    I realise that my choice LastPass requires me to trust them, but I think the advantages outweigh the disadvantages of having many sites using the same passwords and/or low strength passwords. I know various people cleverer than me have looked into their system and failed to find any obvious flaws.

    Remember people, when you implement a password, allow the following things:

    • Any length of password. You don’t have to worry about length in your database, because when you hash the password, it will be a fixed length. You are hashing your passwords aren’t you?
    • Any character. The more possible characters that can be in your passwords, the harder it will be to brute force, as you are increasing the number of permutations a hacker needs to try.

    If you are going to place restrictions, please make sure the documentation matches the implementation, provide a client-side implementation to match and provide quick feedback to the user, and make sure you explicitly say what is wrong with the password, rather than referring back to the incorrect documentation.

    There are also many JS password strength meters available to show how secure the inputted passwords are. They are possibly a better way of providing feedback about security than having arbitrary policies that actually harm your security. As someone said to me on twitter, it’s not like “password is too strong” was ever a bad thing.

    The post Bad Password Policies appeared first on David Pashley.com.

    Posted 16 April 2014, 2:03 am

  7. Favicon SiteVisibility

    [Blog] SiteVisibility: Personality in Email Marketing – Kelvin Newman – Podcast Episode #242

    In this week’s internet marketing podcast Andy talks to Kelvin Newman, former Creative Director at SiteVisibility and now Managing Director of Rough Agenda, about email marketing. Kelvin talks about the importance of having character within your emails to stand out from the crowd. He then gives some advice on how to develop your company’s personality and ends by giving some general rules for email content.

    6235678871 b7e7d1aec5 z Personality in Email Marketing Kelvin Newman Podcast Episode #242

    Post from Apple Pie & Custard blog by SiteVisibility - An SEO Agency

    Personality in Email Marketing – Kelvin Newman – Podcast Episode #242

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    Posted 15 April 2014, 11:00 am

  8. Favicon Freelance Copywriter | Web / SEO Copywriter | Dorset / London / Brighton

    [Blog] Freelance Copywriter | Web / SEO Copywriter | Dorset / London / Brighton: You should divide your web budget between design, development and content

    When you plan your website, how much of your budget do you assign to the content?

    Too many organisations spend thousands of pounds on the design and development of their website, but fail to budget for content creation and management.

    But what is the point of having a great-looking and easily-navigable website if the content is weak, or wrong, or off-message?

    It’s hard to attribute a value to quality content, but it’s easy to see that while great design can impress potential customers, the design can’t tell people what you do, or what makes you unique. Nor can great design answer the questions that your potential customer have.

    Great design is an essential component of a successful website, but without well-planned and well-executed content you have a pretty brochure that says nothing about your business.

    If you want a website that is more than a costly but beautiful artefact, spinning in space, you need to think carefully about your content. 

    And if your budget is tight, why not consider spending less on the design and functionality, and spending more on the content?

    Posted 15 April 2014, 10:32 am

  9. Writing For SEO

    [Blog] Writing For SEO: My Favourite Social Media Tools

    Social media and content writing are intimately linked these days. Which leads to no small challenge for people like me (and anyone without a full-blown digital marketing department to call on) who need to work a whole load of channels for success.

    We write blog posts. And now there are all the social media channels to keep an eye on as well. I could easily spend 24 hours a day, seven days a week between Twitter, Google Plus, Facebook and LinkedIn. Oh, and Pinterest and Instagram.

    But there’s the rub. There are clients, business development and something called Personal Life (you’ve heard of it?) to fit in as well.

    That’s our problem.

    How do you get it all done?

    By containing the lure of social media. By restricting the amount to time you spend on it. By working efficiently, treating social as part of your business, not an extension of your coffee shop or water cooler.

    For me, that means not using the Web interfaces or native apps for any of the social media services I take part in.

    Social media is a blast!

    So my basic premise is that I can’t spend all day on social media. It’s important, but not that important! I want to have two or three focused blasts each day across the accounts I manage – my business and personal accounts, plus client accounts.

    Then occasionally I’ll spend some more time looking outside my areas of focus to involve more people in my conversations and to share a wider range of content.

    Social media management tools

    These are the two tools I couldn’t do without:

    • Commun.it - my go-to when I want a fast, efficient few minutes on Twitter. Commun.it helps me concentrate on interacting with the most important members of my community
    • Hootsuite – draws all my accounts (on Twitter, Facebook, Google Plus and LinkedIn) together in one place and allows me to set up custom tabs so I can see what’s going on at a glance. Setting up Hootsuite is a post in itself. Not because it’s difficult – it isn’t – but because there are so many possibilities.

    HootSuite opt My Favourite Social Media Tools

    Content discovery tools

    An important part of any social media campaign is sharing the right stuff with your followers (I’ll use Twitter terminology, if I may).

    • Feedly – allows me to scan through what’s been published on a list of blogs I’m interested in. This is the RSS feed reader that I’d always wanted
    • Zite – throws in a bit of randomness. It shows me content I’m interested in from across the Web – not just the sites I know about and follow explicitly. I couldn’t be without Zite, but I hate it more than any other part of my social media toolkit. There’s not a desktop version, and it doesn’t happily play with enough other apps. It’s at the same time, open to the widest part of the Web and isolated. I hope Flipboard’s recent acquisition of Zite  gives us users the best of both worlds.

    Spreading my posts

    I try not to post too much social media activity at the same time. These two space things out, so that I can provide value to my followers in other time zones and have a more even stream of activity.

    • Buffer – you can set up schedules for each of your social media accounts and fill up their buffers with content. Buffer and Communi.it work really well together
    • Hootsuite – in its role as my social media Swiss Army Knife, Hootsuite has an automated scheduling option. Just switch it on and it’ll figure out the best time to post according to previous performance. Sweet!

    I’m always trying out new things, but these are the core of my social media toolkit.

    What social media tools do you use? What should I be trying?

    Thanks to Kris Hoet for making the Conversation image available.

    Have you read these?

    Posted 14 April 2014, 2:00 pm

  10. Favicon Wired Sussex Digital Media News

    [Blog] Wired Sussex Digital Media News: Crunch celebrates fifth Birthday and 5,000th client

    Hove based Crunch Accounting, the UK’s fastest growing accountancy firm, celebrated its fifth birthday last week and welcomed their 5,000th client - a Taekwondo academy in Reading. Crunch celebrated their fifth anniversary with a staff party at their ...

    Posted 14 April 2014, 1:00 am

  11. Favicon Wired Sussex Digital Media News

    [Blog] Wired Sussex Digital Media News: City & Guilds Kineo Managed Learning Service Benefits From Acquisition of Mindset

    The City and Guilds Group has announced today that it has acquired Mindset, a digital learning company that provides services to colleges and employers in the UK. Mindset has developed a leading platform known as Profiler to manage and deliver functional ...

    Posted 14 April 2014, 1:00 am

  12. Favicon Adactio: Journal

    [Blog] Adactio: Journal: Higher standards

    Many people are—quite rightly, in my opinion—upset about the prospect of DRM landing in the W3C HTML specification at the behest of media companies like Netflix and the MPAA.

    This would mean that a web browser would have to include support for the plugin-like architecture of Encrypted Media Extensions if they want to claim standards compliance.

    A common rebuttal to any concerns about this is that any such concerns are hypocritical. After all, we’re quite happy to use other technologies—Apple TV, Silverlight, etc.—that have DRM baked in.

    I think that this rebuttal is a crock of shit.

    It is precisely because other technologies are locked down that it’s important to keep the web open.

    I own an Apple TV. I use it to watch Netflix. So I’m using DRM-encumbered technologies all the time. But I will fight tooth and nail to keep DRM out of web browsers. That’s not hypocrisy. That’s a quarantine measure.

    Stuart summarises the current situation nicely:

    From what I’ve seen, this is a discussion of pragmatism: given that DRM exists and movies use it and people want movies, is it a good idea to integrate DRM movie playback more tightly with the web?

    His conclusion perfectly encapsulates why I watch Netflix on my Apple TV and I don’t want DRM on the web:

    The argument has been made that if the web doesn’t embrace this stuff, people won’t stop watching videos: they’ll just go somewhere other than the web to get them, and that is a correct argument. But what is the point in bringing people to the web to watch their videos, if in order to do so the web becomes platform-specific and unopen and balkanised?

    As an addendum, I heard a similar “you’re being a hypocrite” argument when I raised security concerns about EME at the last TAG meetup in London:

    I tried to steer things away from the ethical questions and back to the technical side of things by voicing my concerns with the security model of EME. Reading the excellent description by Henri, sentences like this should give you the heebie-jeebies:

    Neither the browser nor the JavaScript program understand the bytes.

    Alex told me that my phone already runs code that I cannot inspect and does things that I have no control over. So hey, what does it matter if my web browser does the same thing, right?

    I’m reminded of something that Anne wrote four years ago when a vulnerability was discovered that affected Flash, Java, and web browsers:

    We have higher standards for browsers.


    Tagged with


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    Posted 12 April 2014, 1:56 pm

  13. Favicon news - mike griggs - creativebloke

    [Blog] news - mike griggs - creativebloke: The 3D World cgawards

    Delighted to have been asked as a judge, (since when did i become esteemed) get voting now :)  

    Posted 11 April 2014, 4:58 pm

  14. Cogapp blog

    [Blog] Cogapp blog: Bluetooth Low Energy Devices

     iBeacons (or Bluetooth Low Energy devices) are all the rage at the moment; could they be the internal GPS killer app we are all hoping? We’ll report back soon on experiments we have running within Cogapp towers, but in the meantime, here’s some interesting links from the world of BTLE:

    (Most of these started life on Kickstarter)

    StickNFind $50/two. Stick them to your keys, never lose them again. Has an App, you can see your keys on a radar, and page them to play an alarm.

    https://www.sticknfind.com/

    Read more

    read more

    Posted 10 April 2014, 2:04 pm

  15. Favicon Freelance Copywriter | Web / SEO Copywriter | Dorset / London / Brighton

    [Blog] Freelance Copywriter | Web / SEO Copywriter | Dorset / London / Brighton: Highlight the benefits (How to be your own copywriter)

    be-your-own-copywriter

    When you write about your products or services, tell people how your offerings can change their life, or improve their business.

    Remember that when someone buys your fridge they are really buying food and drinks that are cold, fresh and free from bacteria. They are buying convenience. Nobody wants a big white box, but everybody wants food that’s free from mould and safe to eat.

    So if you’re telling someone about your new iPhone app, tell them what it does AND why it’s functions are so great. How does the app improve or alter the user’s day-to-day existence?

    You can highlight benefits in different ways. You can talk explicitly about the benefits, like this:

    Benefits of Dave’s Fridges:

    -  Your food stays fresher for longer 

    -  Efficient freezer function saves energy and cuts your costs 

    -   Easy-clean anti-bacterial coating

    Or you can blend benefits into a more general discussion of the product, like this:

    Dave’s Fridges offer rapid-cooling and an anti-bacterial coating to keep your food healthy and free from bacteria.

    However you do it, make sure you get beyond product features and tell people exactly how they will benefit by buying your product or service. Don’t expect your reader to be able to guess the benefits.

     

    Posted 9 April 2014, 3:30 pm

Flickr

These photos are the most recent added to the BNM Flickr Photo pool.

  1. [Flickr] ladies of night 3

    ladies of night 3

    Posted by http://heatherbuckley.co.uk, on 3 Apr 2014, 6:02 pm

  2. [Flickr] Brighton Bros

    Brighton Bros

    Posted by pg tips2, on 27 Mar 2014, 2:01 pm

  3. [Flickr] Brighton another dimension

    Brighton another dimension

    Posted by pg tips2, on 22 Mar 2014, 11:22 am

  4. [Flickr] brighton bookshop

    brighton bookshop

    Posted by pg tips2, on 16 Mar 2014, 9:10 am

  5. [Flickr] The MARCH of the MERMAIDS

    The MARCH of the MERMAIDS

    Posted by pg tips2, on 16 Mar 2014, 8:37 am

  6. [Flickr] brighton: homeless punks

    brighton: homeless punks

    Posted by pg tips2, on 15 Mar 2014, 2:27 pm

  7. [Flickr] brighton mothers' day

    brighton mothers' day

    Posted by pg tips2, on 15 Mar 2014, 2:25 pm

  8. [Flickr] brighton: the sun harvester

    brighton: the sun harvester

    Posted by pg tips2, on 13 Mar 2014, 10:59 pm

  9. [Flickr] brighton silver machine

    brighton silver machine

    Posted by pg tips2, on 13 Mar 2014, 10:53 pm

  10. [Flickr] brighton saint trinians' hub

    brighton saint trinians' hub

    Posted by pg tips2, on 12 Mar 2014, 11:11 pm

Brighton Gay Pride Parade 2013: SHE WORE A ...

[Flickr] Brighton Gay Pride Parade 2013: SHE WORE A ...

She was afraid to come out of the locker she was as nervous as she could be she was afraid to come out of the locker she was afraid that somebody would see Two three four tell the people what she wore It was an Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie White Polka Dot Boudice... Leopard Print Lycra One…

Photo uploaded by pg tips2, on 13 Apr 2014, 2:46 pm

Recent Threads

This list of subject headings is generated from the last 50 posts made to the BNM mailing list which also had a response.

  1. File recovery after... 8 posts.

Last.fm artist chart

This is a chart of the most listened to artists in the BNM last.fm group. Chart for the week ending Sun, 13 Apr 2014.

  1. David Bowie
  2. Primal Scream
  3. Blur
  4. Foo Fighters
  5. The Cure
  6. Lykke Li
  7. Beastie Boys
  8. The Chemical Brothers
  9. The Prodigy
  10. Beck

Chart updated every Sunday.

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