18 October 2014

How to test your Website Appearance in Different Browsers?

BrowserShots services allow you to test how your site looks in an impressive array of browsers (and various versions of each browser). Processing time can take a while, so it’s probably best to concentrate on only on one or two browsers at a time. Plug in your URL and eventually you get a series of screenshots of the page.

The screenshots appear only after the request is properly processed. For the 5 browsers request the estimate of the response time is 5 to 48 minutes on my computer, depending on the selected browser.

You may get a month of priority processing for 29.95 Dollars or 22.95 Euros, if this service offering what you need to evaluate your site appearance in different browsers.

Here is a first screenshot, how this page would look on the SeaMonkey browser. Doesn't look good due to the poor integration with Infolinks, don’t you think?

06 October 2014

Spur: Free, fun and easy way to critique your web pages

What can you use the app for?

Spur wraps up a number of ways of testing your design into one neat web app. Enter your URL in the box, wait a while and you get a snapshot of your page with a number of buttons so you can check out whether your design still works in unusual transformations.

The service is free, fast, and does not require registration and login.

Mirror Tool

Mirroring a design can point out areas of misalignment and hierarchy.

Here are some examples:

* Mirroring the main page of the blog reveals that many of the initial design choices in the redesign have been broken apart by visuals that add to chaos of the page.
* Multi-colored ads coupled with Facebook widgets contribute to the busyness of the page. The mirror helps to highlight how disconnected all the elements on the page feel.
* There is no carousel in the redesign. While the carousel drives more clicks, the mirror of the page reveals that it also adds busyness to the page.
* Images that are not balanced well with the surrounding copy become even more unbalanced when mirrored.

Rotate Tool

The rotate tool is great for making it easier to see page weight and balance of elements.

Here are some examples:

* Turning the screenshot to the left reveals that the weight of the page is top aligned– readers have an anchor on the page to lead their eyes down the other links.
* Boxed in content creates an unnecessary design element between columns and rows.
* Looking at links sideways show us just how dense this page is with clickable content. In some areas this is welcome, but in other areas it exposes "content cramming" on the homepage.

50% Zoom Tool

Use the zoom tool to look at your site as a smaller thumbnail. Does the layout hold up? The best websites still get the story across at a small size.

Here are some examples:

* The main image is still sharp and crisp at this size, which gets the point across that this is a photo website.
* The main headline gets a little lost, but the paired call to action still pops against the image.
* The rest of the copy is blurred, but the three headlines are still legible, letting users know that the site is all about uploading, discovering and sharing.

16 September 2014

7 Useful Facebook Tips and Tricks

1. Want to check how much Facebook knows about you?
Go to the Facebook Account Settings page, under the General tab, near the bottom is a link to "Download a copy of your Facebook data". The archive includes almost everything from photos to your chat history.

2. Not seeing enough posts from friends you care about—and too many from those you don’t?
Set your news feed to sort by Most Recent, rather than Top News. Then add your favorite people to your Close Friends list and unsubscribe from any friends whose updates you’re not interesting in receiving.

3. Do you really want to make sure your friends see your important news (you’re having a garage sale, for example)?
You can pay a fee, around $7 to $10 a post, to move your update to the top of their news feeds.

4. How to connect to multiple Facebook accounts?
You probably noticed that you can’t login to more than one account on Facebook. However, if you use Chrome, there is a built-in profile feature that allows you to create a new user profile on your browser.
* Click on the Navicon on the top right of your Chrome browser. Go to Settings.
* Go to Users, and click on Add new user.
* Choose your Profile Picture and give a name for that user.
* Click on Create and a new Window will be opened.
* You can now login to your Facebook account as per user profile and easily switch between users at the top right corner.
This feature is available on Firefox as well.

5. How turn off Facebook notification sounds?
Facebook notifications come with sounds and in some cases you wish you could turn it off. Head over to Facebook Account Settings > go to Notifications tab. At the top, untick "Play a sound when each new notification is received" and Save Changes.

6. How to schedule Facebook post for delayed publishing?
Use Facebook’s scheduling tool and set a publishing time for your posts. Click on the clock icon in the status line field and take it from there.

7. How to check if you have some hidden Facebook messages?
Not many people know that Facebook messages get split into two folders: Messages and Other. If you haven’t looked into the Other folder before, you probably missed some messages you didn’t want to miss.

Some additional tricks presentation in the video clips:

Sources and Additional Information:

08 September 2014

How to test Website Loading speed with free Pingdom services?

Pingdom‘s online URL analyzer tests page load time and finds bottlenecks that you can eliminate to speed up your site. It lets you identify what about a web page is fast, slow, too big, what best practices you’re not following, and so on, helping you to speed up and optimize the performance of your websites.

Main Features

* Examine all parts of a web page – View file sizes, load times, and other details about every single element of a web page (HTML, JavaScript and CSS files, images, etc.). You can sort and filter this list in different ways to identify performance bottlenecks.
* Performance overview – You get automatically generated performance-related statistics based on the test result
* Performance grade and tips – See how your website conforms to performance best practices from Google Page Speed. You can get some great tips on how to speed up your website this way.
* Trace your performance history – You are able to save each test results on the website, so you can preserve the original results as a reference point, review them later, so you can see how things change over time.
* Test from multiple locations – See how fast a website loads in Europe, the United States, etc.
* Share your results – Perform a test and share it with your friends, work colleagues or web host.

The services are free for the users.


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