IT Digest: Adobe MAX 2013, CSS Zen Garden, Timelapse, How Internet Archive Works and Much More!
What is the freshest news from the world of informational technologies? Find out in our weekly digest from 14th of May.
Top Seven News
Last week Adobe held MAX conference. The company not only represented its innovative products, but made several rather important announcements. For example, Adobe Creative Suite 7 will not exist anymore and all new features will now be available only from the cloud with the Creative Cloud subscription. The future of Adobe Fireworks was also discussed in details. In addition, Adobe will be busy with hardware solutions manufacturing.
A year ago, on 9th May 2012, Jennison Asuncion and Joe Devon organized the first Global Accessibility Awareness Day. The event is focused on digital accessibility as people with restricted abilities are also complete Internet users. But when creating a website or online service, not all of us think about it. In order to touch the availability of the web, it is proposed to abandon mouse for a few hours, to use just screen readers to surf the Net as well as VoiceOver and other accessibilities of mobile devices and operating systems.
A legendary CSS Zen Garden is celebrating its 10th anniversary having announced about its own restart. About the details of the project return one can read in an interview with Dave Shea. Close for its ideology contest "js1k results - top 10 works for 2013" should be mentioned as well.
Time and Google launched a project that gives us an opportunity to see how the surface of the Earth changed for the last 28 years. A few short news from Google: Google Maps redesign, YouTube paid channels, visualization of Trends Map users' preferences.
Anyone who even occasionally surfs the web is leaving his "digital fingerprints" there and forms a kind of dossier about himself step-by-step. This is a real gift for various crooks and thieves, recruitment companies, intelligence agencies and law enforcement forces. How to protect your personal information and privacy online you can read in this post.
We are pleased to present you a documentary video how the largest Internet Archive works. Its founder Brewster Cale talks how the digitization of books, movies, audios and websites is done as well as about the archive functionality. In general the Archive owners have quite an ambitious goal - to digitize the entire spectrum of human knowledge.
- Adobe shifts to subscription platform — Adobe is changing the way of its business deals having announced that the company stops to make and sell fully packaged versions of Creative Suite software, but the users will be charged with a monthly subscription to use its innovative cloud-based version instead. Creative Suite 6 fully packaged products will be still continued to be sold, but according to Adobe officials the company will focus on its Creative Cloud service in the future. That means new versions of its software will be available only to those users who pay for the monthly subscription service + the future of Adobe Fireworks news with 900+ comments.
- Adobe's major updates to CC (Creative Cloud) — according to Adobe its creative tools will no longer be released as fully packaged products, but as an integral part of its continually-updated innovative Creative Cloud subscription service. Thus, the new version of InDesign won't be CS7 anymore, but InDesign CC that will be available through the service just for subscribed users together with Photoshop CC, Illustrator CC, Dreamweaver CC and other tools via a monthly subscription. In other words, it won't be able to be bought as a one-off payment. InDesign CS6 will still be available for sale, but without any new updates.
- Even Hitler felt discouraged because of the Adobe's new Creative Cloud model (video) — Fuehrer is reported about an inability to obtain a perpetual license for Adobe software as well as about an indispensable condition to subscribe to the Creative Cloud + stormy discussions on reddit as a bonus.
- Jeffrey Zeldman talks about positive changes in Adobe — being one of the AdobeMax conference participants in Los Angeles the author of the post describes his positive impressions he got there. According to him the Adobe products he saw there were both amazing and realistic, Adobe employees seemed to be excited and happy as well as other positive features of the prosperous company.
- Adobe is getting into hardware with a cloud-connected pen stylus and an electronic ruler for mobile devices — besides the announced Creative Cloud-only option, the Adobe officials talked about a couple of hardware projects the company is working on: Mighty, a new cloud-connected pen stylus, and Napoleon, an electronic ruler — both made exactly for mobile devices. They agree that the developed hardware is not totally innovative, but the way it interacts with the devices causes really genuine feelings. In addition, pay attention to the introduction video from Michael Gough, Adobe's VP of Product Experience.
- New Google and Time project shows Earth changes over the last 30 years — a partnership between Google, the U.S. Geological Survey, NASA and Time magazine has resulted in the first project showing how the Earth surface has changed over nearly 30 years. According to Google the obtained data are the most comprehensive images of our changing planet ever made available to the public. The project compiles millions of satellite images from the Landsat mission and trillions of pixels.
- Google Maps could look completely different soon because of the new redesign — Google is working on a radical redesign of the web-based Google Maps testing it with some users. In comparison to an old one, the new UI takes quite a bit of cues from the mobile app version, particularly the Android app. The major change is the removal of the sidebar in favor of several panels that pop up on top of the map layer and show what information is relevant in the context, search results, and places information. New colors and new icons are added to the map that seems to be based on the MapsGL experiment that Google has been running for months now, though it relies on WebGL which isn't supported by all devices.
- YouTube launches a pilot project for paid channels start at $0.99 per month — paid TV “channels”, ranged from comedy channel Laugh Factory to extreme fighting channel UFC Select with monthly pricing starting at 0.99 USD represent the newest initiative from YouTube. All channels have a 14-day free trial and some offer yearly discounts. Paid YouTube channels are commercial-free and available to be launched with any type of devices whether it is a Smart TV, a tablet or a smartphone.
- YouTube Trends map shows the most popular videos according to regions — with YouTube Trends Map the users can see what kind of videos and where they are extremely popular at the moment. The map is supposed to show the relevant and the most popular video in a region, based on obtained shares or views.
- 100 million Windows 8 sold, Windows Blue is promised to be available not later than in 2013 — Microsoft has finally announced that more than 100 million copies of Windows 8 have been sold all around the globe. Because of the dual interface in Windows it is difficult to know how the sales were divided in different segments as it includes PCs, tablets as well as updates from Windows 7 to Windows 8. As for Windows Blue, any precise date for its update was not mentioned yet, but according to Microsoft officials they have a strict intention to make it available before the end of 2013.
- Microsoft admitted Windows 8 as one of their main mistakes — the Financial Times published a sensational interview with Tami Reller, the chief marketing director of Microsoft. Reller confirmed that the corporation has acknowledged a failure with the release of Windows 8 and reported that its key elements will be changed with the upcoming update. However, Reller refused to talk about what changes will be made having just mentioned that PC users faced difficulties in adapting to the new interface of Windows 8.
- Microsoft confirms the release of Windows Blue build in June — according to Julie Larson-Green, the head of Windows engineering the company is going to ship a developer release of Windows 8.1, codenamed "Blue" in the end of June. Microsoft's decision to release a public preview is necessary to show the customers that the company aims to get rid of at least some of the criticisms leveled at Windows 8. Thus, a Start menu remains to be one of the main features Microsoft is going to implement for their customers in Windows Blue.
- Windows Phone app downloads doubled since WP8 launch — Microsoft officially announced that the Windows Phone Store has experienced app downloads increase by more than 100 % since the launch of Windows Phone 8 last year. In addition, Microsoft has opened up developer payout to six more new markets – Afghanistan, Iraq, Montenegro, Serbia, Timor-Leste and Ukraine – giving ability to developers in the mentioned countries to submit apps, both free and paid, to the Windows Phone Store, and bringing the total number to 122.
- SkyDrive reaches 250 million users — in their blog post Microsoft stated that their SkyDrive platform is now being used by 250 million users around the world. But it is not still clear if this number assumes the registered users with active SkyDrive accounts or those who are actively using it on a monthly basis.
- Penetration rate of Full HD notebook panels expected to reach 15% in 2013 — the research firm WitsView states that the share of LCD panels with Full HD (1920x1080) resolution or higher may reach 15% this year. The company admits that the manufacturers are going to provide customers with more HD devices such as 13.3" Kirabook laptop by Toshiba equipped with a 2560x1440 resolution and 221ppi display.
- In Q3 2013 laptops and monitors will get Ultra HD support — in order to stimulate consumer interest in laptops and desktop PCs, the manufacturers tend to use all available means. High-resolution LCD panels complying with Ultra HD is one of the ways to do it. Production of the respective panels size 28" for monitors and 15.6" for laptops will start in the second half of the current year by Innolux company. The same period, Samsung Display unit plans to launch mass production of products size 13.3” and 15.6” characterized by a resolution of 3840 x 2160 pixels. AU Optronics also intends to increase the resolution of LCD panels, but is unlikely to join the club Ultra HD.
Global Accessibility Awareness Day:
- GAAD 2013 — 9 May is Global Accessibility Awareness Day. The purpose of the day is to get people talking, thinking and learning about digital (web, software, mobile, etc.) accessibility and users with different disabilities. To mark GAAD, a number of public events are being organized around the world, from Brisbane to Toronto, Los Angeles to London....
- Celebrating Global Accessibility Awareness Day — GAAD is celebrated on 9th May. Everyone who supports accessibility is encouraged to provide a talk, to conduct a hands-on demo, or to do any activity that would make other people realize the importance of digital accessibility.
- Participation in GAAD 2013 — in order to participate in GAAD on May 9th a user should spend a half hour using his computer under the following conditions: not using a mouse at all, only the keyboard to navigate, zooming the browser to at least 200%, 400%, 600% or 800% (by pressing "CTRL" and the "+" and "-" keys together), using a mobile or tablet device instead of a laptop or a desktop PC, turning off CSS when using web apps.
- Facebook is launching Graph Search all around the globe in upcoming months — according to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg the world's largest social network Facebook is planning to launch a full service Graph Search in the coming months. The beta version of the service was successfully introduced in January 2013. The tool occupies the social graph Facebook – user profiles, their content as well as the appropriate links between them. Thousands of users obtained access to the service with ability to look at people, photos, places and interests.
- Amazon is creating a smartphone with a 3D screen — according to a report by the Wall Street Journal nowadays Amazon is busy with the development of a smartphone that tracks the way your eye moves while looking at the screen and creates a 3D image. Moreover, anonymous Amazon insiders state that the innovative technology does not require the user to wear glasses to see a 3D image on the phone's screen.
- Bing calls to stop using Google habitually — as soon as Google appears with its Fiber service in Kansas, Bing has done something similar in Topeka nearby. In the original research, 57.4 % of the 1,000 respondents chose Bing over Google. Bing followed it up with live streets surveys in front of the cameras in the San Francisco Bay area. Since then, Bing launched a series of adverts promoting "users choose Bing instead of Google." Their motto content is simple: Bing results are preferable. Break your habit and give them a try.
- Quantum network secretly running for more than two years — Quantum networks may represent the next generation of secure communication methods. For two years, scientists at Los Alamos National Labs have been working on network-centric quantum communications trying to develop the next generation of hyper-secure, scalable and affordable quantum cryptographic techniques. The lead researcher, Richard Hughes is interviewed.
- Tablets to overtake PC shipments soon in 2013 — according to the latest research data from IDC the tablet shipments grew 142 % in Q1 2013, to 49.2m, while PC shipments reduced for 13.9 % to 76.3m. The fall in PC shipments was blamed on Microsoft Windows 8. But in reality it's clear that it happened just because of the changed computer usage patterns and innovative trends to use portable devices.
- Baidu acquires online video platform PPS for $370 million — Baidu, the largest search engine in China, confirmed that it has acquired PPStream, the Shanghai-based online video platform for $370 million. PPS is going to be merged into iQiyi, Baidu's video platform in order to become China's largest video platform according to viewing time and number of mobile users. PPStream is a leading online streamer of video content in China under the popular PPS.tv domain. It provides a great volume of content to mobile apps and desktops.
- Facebook is embedding auto-starting video ads into news feeds — Facebook is working over a new strategy to maximize advertising revenues with automatically starting video adverts expected to be introduced on the news feed. It is rumored that the ads with duration not more than 15 seconds will start appearing in July 2013, as the social network looks to further cash in on the platform it provides for on-targeted advertising. Such a step seems to be similar to YouTube's advertising system where commercial ads automatically appear before videos selected by users.
- Apple is the sixth in Fortune 500 and Facebook became the first social network — according to Fortune Apple ranked the sixth place in its annual Fortune 500 list of largest companies in the US by revenues. Cupertino is up from 17th place in 2012 and is the only tech company to break the top ten this year. Meanwhile, Facebook made the top 500 for the first time, only 9 years after launching the website and less then in a year after going public. The social network ranked No. 482 on the list, up from No. 598 the year before.
- Apple may buy Intel soon — the idea that Intel could become the property of Apple seems wild. How can one compare these two companies? Intel is an immutable patriarch in the worldwide computer industry. Apple is a manufacturer of fashionable and even not the most popular smartphones. Nevertheless, this idea is being discussed more and more often nowadays...
- Firefox turns off cookies — Firefox, the internet's alternative browser, is set to turn off cookies in their upcoming upgrade. Cookies are the bits of code which track your activity and allow advertisers to target suitable ads in your direction; it's pretty clear that they are not happy about this recent development.
- Mozilla demanded to stop spyware masquerading — Mozilla Corporation sent a letter of warning to Gamma International demanding to stop the illegal use of the Firefox trademark in FinFisher software. FinFisher is legally sold spyware, developed to organize the monitoring of activities performed on any computer with further stealing of necessary data. The product is mainly used by intelligence agencies and the governments of countries with repressive regimes to monitor the opposition and control the situation during the elections.
- ADATA to distribute the Chrome browser on their flash drives — ADATA company announced a strategic partnership with Google. ADATA became the first manufacturer of storage devices that distributes Internet browser Chrome on their flash drives. Distribution Agreement with Google will work all around the globe and cover four models of USB-flash drives by ADATA: DashDrive UD310 and C008, Classic C906 and Superior S102 Pro. These models will differ with the "Powered by Google" icon.
- Internet Explorer 10: a browser that is perfect for touch — Microsoft has posted up a new video that showcases why the company believes Internet Explorer 10 is the perfect browser when it comes to touch. In the video, Microsoft highlights the work that was put into making IE10 touch friendly + a few words about new features of IE 11.9385.
- Firefox 21-24 Release Dates — the post contains a brief description of the upcoming versions of Firefox including the timeframes and channels they are available in.
Amazing Websites' Design:
- What 14 popular websites used to look like.
- puma.com/mobium/— video that is synchronized with the elements which display additional information.
- adobe-webplatform.github.io/custom-filters-demo-travel-app — a demo website by the Adobe developers with interesting effects and custom navigation.
- onlinedepartment.nl — scrolling effects, sprite and JS- animation.
- thebuildfilm.com — a website with stylized effects is devoted to the movie about the motorcycles creators.
- wistia.com — simple but elegant animation.
- fryreadsonegin.com — Eugene Onegin by Stephen Fry.
- 360langstrasse.sf.tv — a dynamic website with car movement emulation.
- The user is drunk — Will Dayble talks about designing for users.
- Animated Graphics - Animated Backgrounds - Video Backgrounds ...
- Erika Easy - illustration, character design.
- The history of typography in five minutes flat.
- Sneak preview: Syncing fonts to your desktop.
- Adobe contributes font rasterizer technology to FreeType.
- How to move from Illustrator to Photoshop without rasterizing (the easy way).
- 50 shades of grey in web design.
- Narrowing the field: how to bring great type into focus.
- The history of typography - animated short.
- Saul Bass logo design: then and now.
- 50 creative mobile phone logo for inspiration.
- TaskRabbit gets a brand new look.
- 8 reasons to go for the flat design.
- Inspirational trend of packaging designs.
- 6 websites for finding color mix inspiration.
- Free retro fonts to take your design skills one step ahead.
- Designing for a maturing Android.
A Bunch of Design Freebies:
- Best websites to download free UI design PSD files.
- Using Facebook brand assets — find Facebook logos, images, product names, screenshots and other assets and learn how to use them.
- Useful Tips: how to find free graphic resources.
- Textures: Padded envelope textures, free Photoshop patterns, textures and brushes for download.
- Icons: map icons for Google maps.
- Brushes: Nature silhouettes trees & grass brushes, swirl brushes.
- Fonts: Top 10 free icon fonts, 100 greatest free Fonts collection for 2013.
- Templates: minimal business card templates, creative free business card templates, shopping cart Psd files for your E-commerce website, UI web elements PSD for download, new marvelous Greek mythological vector packs & freebie from designous.com.
- Rose brushes sets for designers.
- Collection of free wireframe templates.
- Collection of free fonts and typefaces for April 2013.
- Froont — responsive web design, the visual way.
- GitHub ArchiveRoom — explore your GitHub archive data in 3D!
- CSS3 Animation by Treehouse.
- Caniuse visualizations.
- Clipping Magic — to remove image backgrounds.
- Goodbye, Mouse-Dance! — Thimble helps you design faster in Photoshop & Illustrator.
- Play a mandolin on your keyboard.
- The W3C's soul at stake.
- Embedding WebRTC video chat right into your website.
- W3C invites implementations of HTML media capture.
- Writing and deploying a small Firefox OS application.
- All About HTML5 .
- Facebook to Firefox: please add WebP image support.
- 8 HTML5 animation tools.
- 7 awesome HTML5 website development tools by Adobe.
- How to avoid duplicate downloads in responsive images.
- HTTP/2.0 presentation.
- Adept — the adaptive JPG Compressor.
- The smashing editor's choice: a free eBook.
- Responsive retina-ready menu.
- Create a Contact Form in HTML5 and CSS3 for dummies.
- Common patterns in style guides, boilerplates and pattern libraries + Styleguide & Boilerplate patterns : by Framework.
- CSS Zen Garden is celebrating its 10th anniversary and announced the restart. Dave Shea on the return of CSS Zen Garden.
- CSS animate effects we can learn from animate.css.
- The HTML email boilerplate.
- CSS Modal — modals built out of pure CSS.
- Adobe demos its vision for the future of CSS.
- Methods for modifying objects in OOCSS.
- On CSS Documentation.
- Making accessible icon buttons.
- Vanishing acts: the CSS :empty Selector.
- Collection of page transitions.
- Today I saw the future or ORBX.js, a downloadable HD codec written in JS and WebGL by Brendan Eich.
- jsdares — an open source proof-of-concept.
- Sharrre — a jQuery plug-in that allows you to create nice widgets sharing for Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus (with PHP script) and more.
- JResponsive — super-smooth transition layout for jQuery.
- Two.js — a two-dimensional drawing API geared towards modern web browsers.
- fartscroll.js — you want fart noises as you scroll? Get ready...
- Open Peer and the Frontiers of WebRTC.
- toastr — notification messages.
- ExplainJS — instant side-by-side view of your comments and code.
- pazguille/is-near — calculates if the mouse position is near to a given element.
Fun & Entertainment:
- How the greatest Internet archive works.
- How to protect your personal information and privacy online.
- Annual Coverity Scan Report finds open source and proprietary software quality better than industry average for second consecutive year.
- Google Glass: Hidden sensors in Google Glass could enable AR apps and Google Glass becoming more independent from your Android smartphone + David Pogue on Google Glass (video).
- Motorola: Google's $12 billion road to nowhere?
- $250 Casetop turns your smartphone into a laptop + video.
- AppGratis dealt another knockout punch by Apple.
- iForum 2013 — Grand Fiesta for Ukrainian and foreign IT figures.
- Cloud Computing Blog — opinions and ideas.
- The coolest and most terrifying biometric robots.
- History of terminations & firings because of employee social media.
- Silicon Valley startup that looks beyond the US.
- Japanese police target users of Tor anonymous network.
- Phones of the future could morph on demand.
- 10 things you need to know about Firefox OS.
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