How World War Z Used AI to Build Smarter Zombies

Zombies are dumb. Except in World War Z. Here’s how VFX firm Moving Picture Company made smart hordes of running dead.

    




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Build a Scalable Multi-node Red Hat OpenShift PaaS from Scratch

We will be setting up a 2 node PaaS. These instructions can be easily generalized to set up 3, 4, or 20 node clusters. The first node will be running the Broker, Bind DNS, Qpid messaging queue, and MCollective. This node will also be hosting gears. The second node will be simpler and will only run MCollective and will host gears.


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Continuous Integration Tip #3 – Version your Databases as part of your automated build

Having a good Continuous Integration setup is the gift that keeps on giving, but what about your database? For most web applications these days, your database is a large part of your application – so why is versioning it such an uncommon thing? Because it’s time consuming and complicated – two requirements that Continuous Integration love conquering with a one-two punch.


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Build Your Audience with Facebook and Blogging

Have you read “How To Be a Rockstar WordPress Designer” yet?

Facebook blogging audienceFacebook and blogging, if both are done right, can be a powerful combination. Linking up your Facebook Page with your blog is a great way to get your blog readers more involved with your Facebook community, and it’s also a great chance to let your Facebook fans know what’s going on over on your blog.

It’s not difficult to link up your Facebook Page and your blog, in fact some of it can be set once and then will automatically continue to work for you. It’s just a matter of getting the pieces in place so that both your blog and your Facebook Page are communicating with each other and your people can easily connect with you where they are most comfortable interacting.

Let’s start with some things you can do on your Facebook Page.

Automatically Post Your Blog Updates

Every time you write a new blog post, you can have Facebook automatically publish that on your Facebook Page. This is a great way to let your fans know that there is new content over on the blog, and they can get a quick sneak peek to see if it’s something they want to check out or not.

All you need is a Facebook Page app that posts from an RSS feed. RSS Graffiti is a good example of one that is completely free and easy to set up.

Blog Directly In Facebook

Most bloggers will want to continue to have an external blog outside of Facebook, however, Facebook’s Notes app can act like a blog inside Facebook. With Notes you can write and post an article, include images and links, and post it right to your Facebook Page Wall. The Notes app is automatically added to any new Page, so you can easily find it by going in to the Apps section in your Edit Page backend.

The Notes app can also be used to import your blog and works great if your blog is primarily written. {Videos do not import properly, so if your blog has a lot of video, then I recommend just using the RSS Graffiti app for your blog.} The Notes app will import your new blog posts right into Notes, so that it’s now in your Facebook Page and your fans can comment on it there.

There are also a number of things you can set up on your blog to point to and connect to your Facebook Page.


Facebook Share Button

There are a number of good plugins for WordPress that add a Facebook Share button to each post on your blog. You can have one that shows the number of shares, or one that simply has the Share button with no count.

A Facebook Share button is a quick and easy way for readers to share your post if they like it. They are able to add their own comment, and Facebook pulls in the title, URL, short description and thumbnail, so it gives your blog some great exposure to the Share-er’s friends.

Facebook Comments

Adding Facebook comments to your blog can be a great way to bring some more interactivity with Facebook to your site. Facebook comments sync between your blog and Facebook so that user’s comments are posted to their Personal Profile when they comment.

Readers who are not on Facebook are not able to comment, however, so some people use Facebook Comments alongside the regular WordPress comments, or only use the Facebook Comments on certain pages of their blog.

Facebook Like

You can also add a simple Like button to each blog post. When readers click Like, it publishes a quick story to their profile saying that they Like it. The Like button also typically shows readers if any of their friends already like the post, so it can be a great way to show them that their friends are already interacting with your blog {if they actually are, of course}.

The Like button doesn’t let them add a comment or share the actual post, but it does give your post just a bit of visibility on Facebook. And visibility equals new fans and more interaction from current fans. Use it as well as the Facebook Share button to give your readers two easy ways give you some Facebook love.

Facebook Page Icon or Like Box

Many of your blog readers would love to be fans on Facebook, as well. Give them the option to do so right from your blog with a Facebook Page Like Box, which has the Like button right on your site, so they don’t have to leave your blog.

Or if you prefer to have them leave your site to go to Facebook, then use a Facebook icon that links to your Facebook Page. You can use just a plain text link, too, but if people are looking for how to connect with you on Facebook, they’ll be looking for the blue Facebook “F”. Don’t be shy about displaying that icon!

How to Find Apps and Plugins

If you’re not familiar with finding and installing new Facebook Page apps and WordPress plugins, just start doing some searching. You can use the search bar in Facebook to search for apps – just start typing what you’re looking for and Facebook will show you a list of suggestions. If looking for WordPress plugins, you can do a search on WordPress.org for plugins.

And don’t forget that Google is your best friend. You can search for Facebook apps and WordPress plugins right in Google, as well, and will find recommendations from others, as well as the actual apps and plugins on Facebook and WordPress.

Your Turn

Are you already using some of these tools and techniques? Which new ones are you going to start implementing? And are there any other techniques that you would like to add to the list? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below.

Image Credit: Anirudh Koul

About the Author

Jess is a quirky entrepreneur who helps fellow quirks EXPLODE their business on Facebook. She loves all things Facebook and being able to help business owners learn how to build an active audience to grow their business through Facebook. If you’d like to learn more, you can attend her FREE webinar, The Facebook Explosion Blueprint, or join The Facebook Explosion community on Facebook. You can also follow Jess’ blog and website over at www.jessilicious.com.


Free PDF eBook: Corporate Blogging Guide by Blogsessive

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Visual Studio 11 Getting Some UI Updates in The RC Build

With the release of Visual Studio 11 Beta back in February of this year, we introduced changes to the user experience based on two core design principles, the first being to give you more space for your content and the second being to draw more focus to that content. Since the debut of these changes there’s been significant community response and feedback.


dzone.com: latest front page

Use a Blog to Build Your Brand

Do you need quality design resources? Graphic River has them. Tons! And cheap…

Brand building is the only route to business success in the present global market scenario. Sales alone cannot make a business successful since they do not increase until the brand becomes a forceful tool that will launch the business into the big league. Brand building is a tough task needing an investment of a lot of time and money, and every step needs to be done right. Even then, something may hold back the branding initiative.

In such a scenario blogging may prove to be savior in helping in the branding exercise and making it successful. Blogging can help in various ways, some of which are discussed below:

  • Build an online image through blogs- Part of the branding initiative includes the addition of a jingle or a catch line that is so catchy that it stays in consumers’ minds. This is often to such an extent that the very mention of the brand first brings a very distinct image of the brand and then anything else. This has been termed as creation of a “franchise” in the mind by experts, and companies spend billions to create this mind franchising exercise. Another way to get your blog’s brand out there is to give-away free promotional products like stress balls with the blog’s name on them. One last effort can be to use blogging for increasing the branding endeavors, which will definitely help in creating an online presence for the brand and the products associated with it. Also, blogs are an open, free for all board where your brand stories can be narrated time and again, new thoughts added, and updates that help to keep the reading public in the loop. A blog is like a guided tour that continues over time. A personal perspective for a brand is possible only through blogs, and it makes people warm up to it.
  • Blogs for initiating conversations- Blogs need not be a one way communication channel. It is a great way to initiate a conversation with consumers, get their views, feedback and recommendations. Often it is the end user who is able to point out flaws and drawbacks that can be rectified to improve the image of the brand and the products attached to it. Personal interaction helps to develop a personal rapport and with it comes faith and trust in the people behind the brand. A personal angle to a strictly professional or business relationship only adds to the advantages without any negative effects.
  • Blogging helps in marketing by word-of-mouth- Blogs have a double effect. Besides opening a communication channel between brand owners and brand users, it also helps to create a network involving people connected to users, since all people talk to each other about good products and services. This can easily have a viral effect, since path breaking innovations will reach all the networks of the people you interact or communicate with. This word of mouth marketing is perhaps the best marketing tool there can be.
  • Using connections for brand building- Blogging helps to build connections and these connections pay off in promoting brands. Blogging makes it easy to become powerful through knowledge and expertise in your field, and sharing this with others makes them see the extent of your knowledge. Once the target audience realizes this, they begin to accept your influence and warm up to the brand you promote. Connections are easy to make through this knowledge route. Being honest, letting your true self come out in your blogs, adds life to a few lines and the reading public loves that. Blogs thus become a perfect medium to showcase honesty, sincerity and expertise in your field, without any need for rhetoric or flowery writing styles. Connections will then naturally follow.
  • Create communities on social networks through blogs- the impact of blogs can be extended to social networks like Facebook and Twitter as well. With shared interests the viral effect of a blog can do wonders for the brand a sword spreads, and so does the name and fame. Additional layers can be created through message boards, review sections, customer profiles and so on to form a whole community for a brand. This is assisted by social network platforms like Ning, CrowdVine and KickApps, which serve precisely this purpose.
  • Using Cost effective brand building exercises- Brand building can bean expensive exercise and companies that have no dearth of resources go all out to spend on brand initiatives. However, this is neither warranted nor a necessary rule of thumb. Brands can be built on shoe string budgets, with little spending or none at all, as is the case with blogging. Many blog platform come free of cost and knowledge of blogging can improve over time to yield the best results.
  • Partnerships help in reinforcing brands- Modern brands are based on the concept of distributed power. Brands are less an in-house brand expert’s forte and more can be gauged from the interactive consumer platforms where a true, unbiased picture emerges. Using these inputs to restructure and improve the brand and its image subsequently, are the way smart companies work. Partnership with meaningful participants helps. Blogging is one effective way to initiate partnerships that will help the brand.

According to Brian Solis, a famous media expert and business blogger, a humane blog with genuine and helpful advice combined with the ability to cultivate relationships and sustain them helps to form good connections, improve customer service, revise perceptions and improve the reach, resonance and loyalty of the brand in question.

About the Author

This is a guest post by Neil Jones, who Specializes in launching ecommerce sites, he is currently plying his trade as head of marketing for eMobileScan. With 18 websites based all around Europe they are on course to be one of Europe’s largest online retailers of Industrial handheld computers and label printers like the Motorola MC75 terminal or the Datalogic Memor. Neil has been an online marketer for the past 6 years and in that time he has owned and run a range of sites all built around the ecommerce platform.


Free PDF eBook: Corporate Blogging Guide by Blogsessive

As a subscribe reader of Blogsessive, this is my gift to you: a guide to corporate blogging (but not only) that will help you in your blogging adventures! Download now, for FREE!


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©2008-2010 Copyright by Blogsessive – Blogging Tips. This Feed is for personal non-commercial use only. If you are not reading this material in your news aggregator, the site you are looking at is guilty of copyright infringement. Please contact us, so that we can take legal action immediately.
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