Design News

7 Inquiries to Discover Out What Shoppers Actually Need

Leah Gaviota font on Envato Elements

About ten years ago, after throwing in my day job, I stepped into the world of freelance web design. I honestly had no idea what I was doing, but I’d thrown myself directly into the deep end so I had to learn fast.

At first, eager to please, I would start projects by simply chatting with clients about what they wanted, and offering a flat rate with an unlimited number of revisions so I could ensure I delivered something they loved.

However I soon discovered that the unlimited revisions approach almost always lead to projects dragging on far too long, as well as pressure to do free work: “Oh could you just add this extra thing please?”

It was clear I had to clamp down on never ending revision requests if I ever wanted to be adequately compensated for my time. I had to find out what people wanted up front. I started trying to probe more before a project started, but very often I would get the response:

“I don’t know what I want. You’re the designer, just do whatever you think is right”.

I’ll tell you one thing right now: if a client says that to you never ever believe them. They may honestly think they don’t know what they want, but it’s just not true.

Leah Gaviota font on Envato Elements

When I first heard this response I thought, “Ok cool, you’re easy to please!” and got to work. But I soon discovered the easy going outlook typically lasts only until the client sees the design. When they do, they will suddenly be imbued with creativity and have a long list of instructions that usually involve you starting over with their new found influx of ideas.

Clients Know What They Want, But..

I came to realize clients really did know what they wanted,

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Efficiency: Easy Ideas for Optimizing Video on Web sites

Video on websites has become a common element that is often used purely for design purposes. It’s a factor that you should definitely optimize for performance reasons.

Too Much Eye Candy: When the Website Becomes Fatter

We complain about loading times. Visitors vanish forever after a few seconds without pixels. We discuss if we can squeeze the last bit of air out of our image material. And then, we go ahead and put a video into our website’s header area, or even set it as a full-screen background. Hero videos are one of the newest trends in the design panopticon.

Video don’t only waste bandwidth as a useless background element, though. Even with tutorials or image films, it’s worth keeping some tips in mind, in order to keep your website’s loading time under control. It’s not a secret that the average site is becoming heavier. According to HTTPArchive, the average weight has reached 3.061kb, while the value was about half a megabyte less a year ago. Another year ago, it was another half MB lower.

Source: HTTParchive

As image compression is becoming more common and better, and designs tend to favor less, but more meaningful images, blaming the weight gain on videos is pretty obvious. HTTP Archive also confirmed that the average video weight has risen from 204kb to 729kb over the last two years.

Optimization doesn’t only mean optimizing code, requests, and images, but also optimizing videos. Thus, web developer Estelle Weyl has compiled a few tips that can help you put your website on a balanced diet.

Waiver is the Best Optimization

For me, there doesn’t have to be a hero video. I have a hard time thinking of application cases where that would be different. Generally, I’m always skeptical when it comes to videos, as

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The way to Enhance and Maximize Your Pc Safety

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The security of our computer is of utmost importance. Everyone who owns a computer would agree that our computers need to be more protected. There are billions of people using the internet now, and this simply means that there is much room for hackers or identity thieves to cause harm and wreak havoc. Both big corporations and family computers are vulnerable to cyber-attacks. Here are some ways to improve and maximize our computer security: 1. Install and Use Anti-Virus Software So powerful and sophisticated are malware these days that it is now possible hack into a computer using DNA strands, …

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Important Gear for Any Mastering Studio

In this tutorial I’ll help you to understand what is the most suitable equipment to purchase for a mastering studio.

The recommend equipment is divided into three types of mastering studio:

  1. Dedicated Home Studio: private use or just starting out
  2. Semi-Pro: part-time
  3. Pro: part-time to full-time

In this tutorial I’ll show you the following equipment required in creating a mastering studio:

  • Audio Interfaces
  • Digital Audio Workstations
  • Equalizers
  • Compressors
  • Multiband Compressors
  • Limiters
  • Monitors/Loudspeakers

Additional Extras that you should consider:

  • Harmonic Enhancers
  • Headphones
  • Cables
  • Analyser
  • Audio Restoration Software
  • Audio Editing Software
  • Conversion Software
  • DDP Software
  • Power Conditioners
  • Books

It’s worth noting that any equipment listed not appearing under the heading Pro doesn’t mean that it wouldn’t be found in a high-end studio.

A Selection of Equipment

1. Audio Interfaces

An Audio Interface is used to connect equipment to a computer and improve its sonic qualities. As mastering engineer, the main reason for any given choice would be the quality of the analogue-to-digital and digital-to-analogue convertors.

Dedicated Home Studio: Focusrite Saffire Pro 26

The Saffire Pro is a great introduction into the world of audio interfaces. With the ability to work at 24-bit/96kHz, the provision of plenty of I/O’s and a quick and easy set up makes for a great first time investment.

Semi-Pro: Universal Audio Apollo

The Apollo provides access to impressive array of Universal Audio’s plug-ins. UA has successfully created dedicated plug-ins that is modeled on high-end mastering hardware.

Pro: Prism Sound Titan

The Titan’s A/D to D/A convertors are often described as unbeatable. The Titan provides tremendously clear conversion in the high end with excellent definition in the lows.

My advice: Pro’s might go a step further and invest in a dedicated A/D to D/A convertor to compliment the audio interface.

2. Digital Audio Workstation

A Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) is a software programme used to record the audio.

Dedicated Home Studio: Reaper

Reaper wasn’t designed as a post-production DAW.

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“Okay Google, inform me a joke”

jokes

What did one snowman say to the other?

Do you smell carrots?

It’s National Joke Day, and your cheesy, mostly funny Assistant has a few jokes up its sleeve. Here are a couple of our favorites:

  • You: “Ok Google, tell me a joke.”
  • Google Assistant: “One joke, coming up! What is a sea monster’s favorite snack? Ships and dip.” 🛳

Not your speed? What about…

  • You: “Ok Google, tell me a joke.”
  • Google Assistant: “This might make you laugh. How do robots eat guacamole? With computer chips.”

So head outside—“Ok Google, comedy shows nearby”—or take a seat—“Ok Google, tell me a joke”—and cue the laugh track.

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