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Fusion Radar: April 22, 2014

April 23rd, 2014 - by marissa - Salt Lake City, Utah

Keeping up with technology is a lot of work. Luckily, we enjoy wading through the noise just to find the gems of awesomeness sprinkled throughout. Fusion Radar is our gift to you, Current or Potential Client, so that you can enjoy all of the awesome without any of the drudgery. Unwrap it each week, and know that you’re loved by the geeks and pixel-pushers at Agency Fusion.

GitHub Cheat Sheet

GitHub user tiimgreen recently published a GitHub cheat sheet – a collection of tools and features that the average GitHub user may not know about. Some of these features include viewing commit history by author, using GitHub to compare branches, and various keyboard shortcuts.

GitHub Cheat Sheet

Amazon Smartphone

There have been rumors that Amazon is working on a smartphone that will let you see in 3D without wearing 3D glasses. According to these reports, the phone will work by using its front-facing camera to track users’ eyes and alter the images on screen so they appear to be in 3D. Although Amazon hasn’t confirmed any of the emerging stories, it’s been reported by the Wall Street Journal that the product will be introduced later this year.

Amazon Smartphone

RegExr

RegExr is an online regular expression tool designed to make regular expressions easier for new (or even seasoned) users. This free tool comes complete with syntax highlighting, contextual help, video tutorials, a reference guide, and searchable community patterns.

RegExr

Why I Won’t Sign Your NDA

“Why I Won’t Sign Your NDA” is a succinct article by programmer-for-hire John Larson. In it, Larson describes the reasons why NDAs are “sloppy legalese at best, malicious traps at worst.” It basically boils down to the fact that while ideas are plentiful, good execution is rare; and signing an NDA impinges on his ability to properly execute a good idea.

Why I Won’t Sign Your NDA

Zed

Zed is an offline-capable, open-source code-editor with minimal interface elements and a robust set of features. This editor is also keyboard focused, meaning that users won’t need to take theirs hands off the keyboard for anything. It includes syntax highlighting and code completion for over 25 different code languages, plus multiple cursors and split-view editing.

Zed

SpotRocket

SpotRocket is a site that lists and ranks startups according to their capital, number of employees, and growth record. Site visitors can sort startups by location or industry, and clicking on a specific startup allows you to view more detailed information, like the company’s age, number of Twitter followers, and a short description.

SpotRocket

GoAccess

GoAccess is an open source real-time log analyzer and interactive viewer that runs in a terminal in *nix systems. It’s designed to make system administrators’ lives easier by providing instant HTTP statistics as it parses live web log files and outputs the data to your computer’s X terminal.

GoAccess

Brace Yourself, Here Comes the Mobile Appsplosion

CIO’s recent editorial theorizes that users are – or will soon be – overwhelmed by the number of apps on their phone. Although apps that break away from their all-in-one predecessors (like Facebook’s Paper or Dropbox’s Carousel) make sense, the sheer number of these apps may outweigh their usefulness. There are even apps that help you find or organize the other apps on your phone, like Aviate and Cover. Check out the article linked below for more information.

Brace Yourself, Here Comes the Mobile Appsplosion

XKCD: Lorenz

One of xkcd’s most recent posts is a “choose your own adventure” comic strip that takes users through multiple choices and endings. It’s worth checking out, and on some endings, you get to “fill in the blank” and write your own punchlines.

XKCD: Lorenz

Upcoming 3Things Event

April 17th, 2014 - by Agency Fusion - Salt Lake City, Utah

3Things Lecture SeriesOur second 3Things event is just around the corner. Tuesday 4/22 at 6:00 PM we’ll be featuring three more dynamic speakers, each presenting for 20 minutes:

Bret Rasmussen | Founder, Kuru
3 Things Every Entrepreneur Should Know

Andrew Scarcella | Copywriter, Ancestry.com
3 Things You Can’t Do, But a Copywriter Can

David Johnson | Art Director, Agency Fusion
3 Things to Keep Your High-maintenance Creatives Happy

 

 

If you plan to attend please RSVP to 3things at agencyfusion.com.

Date: Tuesday, 4/22/14
Time: 6:00 PM (sharp)
Location: 155 N 400 W, Ste 460, Salt Lake City, UT 84103 (map)

Visitor parking is on the north side of the building. If there aren’t any visitor spots open, just grab an open spot anywhere that doesn’t say ‘reserved’. When you exit the elevator on the 4th floor, go through the door on the right side and then turn right down the hallway to the Agency Fusion office.

Fusion Radar: April 16, 2014

April 17th, 2014 - by marissa - Salt Lake City, Utah

Keeping up with technology is a lot of work. Luckily, we enjoy wading through the noise just to find the gems of awesomeness sprinkled throughout. Fusion Radar is our gift to you, Current or Potential Client, so that you can enjoy all of the awesome without any of the drudgery. Unwrap it each week, and know that you’re loved by the geeks and pixel-pushers at Agency Fusion.

Amazon Dash

Amazon Dash is the new AmazonFresh product that aims to simplify shopping (even more than Amazon already does). The Dash is a small, handheld device that allows you to either say an item name or scan an item, and Amazon will automatically add it to your shopping list. Dash is also WiFi-enabled, so you can add items to your shopping cart throughout the day without pulling out your phone or going to your computer.

Amazon Dash

Reasons to Use Open Source Are Changing

For several years, the relatively low cost of open source software was one of the only reasons companies would consider using it. As the article title suggests, however, that’s changing, and fast. A recent survey suggests that now most companies that use open source software do so because it produces high quality products and attracts top talent. There’s also the benefit of being able to modify and customize software without having to build a whole new base.

Open Source For Businesses

Habit List

Habit List is a new iOS app designed to help users set and achieve maintenance goals. It’s sort of like a combination of Cal (a daily schedule app) and Everest (a goal-oriented app). Habit List focuses on how long you can maintain an activity–how many days in a row you complete items on your personal to-do and goal list. The app also sends you reminders of activities that still need to be done that day, and creates graphs of your weekly progress.

Habit List

MinnowBoard Max

Intel recently unveiled a smaller, faster version of its original MinnowBoard SBC: the MinnowBoard Max. This open hardware embedded board features more memory, a faster core, a microSD slot, and various other improvements over the original MinnowBoard. While it hasn’t hit the market yet, Intel plans to release it in June or July of this year.

MinnowBoard Max

Driving Curve

Driving Curve is an iOS app that records and analyzes your driving behavior. It uses your phone’s GPS to capture your speed and then evaluates your performance based on how quickly you stop or accelerate, and how steady your speed is overall. The app then ranks you along with other Driving Curve users and builds your driving profile.

Driving Curve

The Right Way To Ask Users For iOS Permissions

Brenden Mulligan, co-founder of Cluster, recently published an article aimed at app developers who lose users when they ask for iOS permissions. Mulligan’s main takeaway from the article is: don’t ask for access to something until your app really needs it, and plainly tell the user what they’ll get in return.

The Right Way To Ask Users For iOS Permissions

Velositey

Velositey is a free Photoshop extension that allows designers and developers to create prototypes of website designs within Photoshop. The extension comes with a pre-generated grid system and starts you off with standard elements like headers, sliders, content areas, and footers.

Velositey

Typeform

Typeform is an online survey builder that sets itself apart from the competition with its clean design, straightforward copy, and simple pricing tiers (including a free option). The idea behind Typeform’s slick look is that site visitors and customers are much more likely to fill out questionnaires when presented with something that looks simple, professional, and engaging. Their surveys are also mobile friendly and allow companies to incorporate their own branding.

Typeform

Style Manual

Australian designer Andy Taylor recently published a “Style Manual,” which he claims combines the best rules from British- and American-English. He admits that each system has both commonsense and nonsense rules, and highlights those rules that make the most sense. In his online guide, Taylor touches on issues like most commonly misused words, punctuation, and styling.

Style Manual

A Brief Typography Primer

April 8th, 2014 - by marissa - Salt Lake City, Utah

History

This month’s internal training was a crash course in the basics of typography. The history goes back several hundred years. Although Gutenberg is often called the “father of typography,” it was actually the Chinese that first started creating woodblock printings and wooden movable type as early as 1100 A.D. However, the simplicity of the Latin alphabet allowed printing presses to be created and used quickly and efficiently; whereas the Chinese language had thousands of characters, making the typesetting process much more complex and time-intensive.

Gutenberg’s first type blocks used a typeface called Black Letter, which resembled the handwriting in books and manuscripts at the time. Type slowly evolved to more legible letter forms, like Roman and Caslon. The first sans-serif typeset was developed in 1816 by William Caslon IV. Some of the most famous fonts, Futura and Helvetica, were created in 1927 and 1957, respectively.

Modern Typography

Letter forms have anatomy that typographers can refer to when describing them. Some examples include bowl, counter, stem, tittle, and leg. There are even more terms when it comes to digital typesetting processes, including leading, kerning, point size, line length, and tracking.

Few people outside of the typesetting industry understand the difference between typography and lettering. Typography is the style and arrangement or appearance of typeset matter, whereas lettering is the art of drawing letters.

Users also need to beware of free fonts! More often than not free fonts have poor quality, poor auto kerning, a limited glyph library and formatting issues. Often, if you’re looking for a font for your business or project, it’s going to be worth it to purchase a high-quality font.

Fusion Radar: April 2, 2014

April 2nd, 2014 - by marissa - Salt Lake City, Utah

Keeping up with technology is a lot of work. Luckily, we enjoy wading through the noise just to find the gems of awesomeness sprinkled throughout. Fusion Radar is our gift to you, Current or Potential Client, so that you can enjoy all of the awesome without any of the drudgery. Unwrap it each week, and know that you’re loved by the geeks and pixel-pushers at Agency Fusion.

RoomScan

RoomScan is a new app by Locometric that can produce an accurate floor plan of any room in less than 30 seconds. Users just walk around the room, touching their phone briefly to each wall. RoomScan uses the iPhone’s sensors to create a drawing of the room, accurate within 6 inches. The app also includes the ability to add doors and windows to the generated floor plan.

RoomScan

Linux Commands

This guidebook is an extensive reference list that sorts and explains Linux commands. While it’s designed to help those who are trying to learn Linux for the first time, it’s also a great Linux refresher. The categories are fairly broad, with titles like “System,” “Hardware,” and “Network,” and each one of the commands listed links to a more detailed article about that particular command.

Linux Commands

Wolfram Language Code Gallery

We mentioned the knowledge-based Wolfram Language a few posts back. It’s been growing in both size and popularity, and now its creator has released a language code gallery with examples of what  Wolfram can do. This gallery includes a variety of projects–from mapping volcanic ash cloud advisories to making a Hipstamatic filter–that are all created using the Wolfram Language.

Wolfram Language Code Gallery

Foldscope

Foldscope is a new, economical microscope that is printed-and-folded from a single flat sheet of paper. Not only is it cheap to make (costing less than $1 in parts), but it also is quite powerful: the Foldscope provides over 2,000X magnification. Its creators, a team of Stanford University scientists, are hoping that the low cost and durability of Foldscope will help revolutionize medicine in third-world countries.

Foldscope

Serve

Serve is a small web server and rapid prototyping framework for building web apps and simple websites. This open-source, Rack-based project can use a variety of languages to create these sites, including HTML, ERB,  Markdown, and others. It builds static or dynamic sites, and has helper methods that can simplify complex logic.

Serve

PsySH

PsySH is an interactive, open source PHP REPL that combines a runtime developer console with an interactive debugger. PsySH differentiates itself from other runtime developer consoles by including features like supporting readline, listing sets of defined classes/function/constants, and showing the source code of any function available to the current environment.

PsySH

Down For Everyone or Just Me?

This is a simple but useful tool that can let you know if the problems you’re experiencing with a particular site are happening everywhere, or just on your computer. You just submit the site address, and Down For Everyone quickly generates a site report that tells you what you need to know.

Down For Everyone or Just Me?

Mailparser.io

Mailparser.io is a fast, lightweight email parser that automatically processes incoming emails, then extracts and converts their content into easy-to-handle data. You can download the parsed data as a spreadsheet, send it to your CRM, or send it via webhooks.

Mailparser.io

Slick

Slick is a great tool you can use to build just about any kind of carousel you need.

Slick

The NASA Z-2 Suit

NASA has been working on the construction of their newest spacesuit: the Z-2 Suit. And now that they have most of the technical details figured out, they want to hear your opinion on what it should look like. They’ve released 3 different designs and have asked people to vote for their favorite; the winning design will become the new look for NASA astronauts.

The NASA Z-2 Suit