Friday, October 31, 2008

Cloud Computing: Graphic Editing Apps from Aviary

Love the internet? My hunch is we will all be doing more online and less on our hard drives as time goes on. So do the folks at Aviary.

This Long Island-based firm has developed a competitor to Adobe Creative Suite, composed of four different applications. The four apps are: Phoenix, the Web-based Image Editor,
Toucan creates color swatches and palettes, Peacock generates patterns and terrain, and Raven (the newest hatchling) is a vector editor similar to Illustrator.

I heard about Phoenix through Photojojo, a weekly resource of cool, fun things you can do with photography. More comment from Photojojo:

"Phoenix is an image editor that works just like Photoshop. It’s got magic wands, layers, masks, blend modes: the whole enchilada.
It’s web-based, so you don’t have to download any software or use up space on your hard drive. You can use photos already on the web, too: Flickr, Facebook and Picasa all work.
There are 40+ free tutorials that range from beginner to advanced, so you can learn how to use all them fancy tools.
There’s a very good free version, as well as a souped-up hotrod version that’s actually worth paying for."

Aviary was developed in response to artists who balked at the price of Adobe's Creative Suite. You can pay yearly, monthly, or use the service for free for your own enjoyment. Being web-based, we know in advance it will work with our CherryPals when they arrive.

Monday, October 13, 2008

More from CherryPal Founder Max Seybold

You can read much more online about the CherryPal, including a blog from Max Seybold, founder and CEO.

About the green personal computing revolution ...: The C114 is coming Election Day, November 4th

The values: Green, Open, and Fair distinguish CherryPal from the competition.

Improved CherryPals Shipping Nov. 4!

Good news! The CherryPals are shipping on Nov. 4.
Latest info from the revised website:

CherryPal™ replaced the C100 with the 8GB
SSD C114 - still the same price!!!

All open and future orders will get an automatic upgrade
to the C114 - same low price of $249.00 but with 8GB
(C100 4GM) local FLASH storage.

We will start shipping the C114 (read eleven, four) on US
Election Day, Tuesday November 4th, 2008. We all hope
this day will change the world for the better.

We are accepting orders again, shipment on
11/4 guaranteed!!!

Friday, October 10, 2008

Minimalist Computing

Some interesting points to ponder on today's Unclutterer Blog.

Alex Payne offers Rules for Computing Happiness: Software Simplicity that are relevant to CherryPal and the way users will "live in the cloud."

When it comes to software, in my opinion, there’s no better way to keep it simple than to use as little of it as possible. All software exists to offer some solution, but with software comes problems: a learning curve, bugs, upgrades, security issues, and so on. Clearly identify what you really want to accomplish and you might find that you don’t need a new piece of software, or that an application to meet your goal is already installed on your computer.

Once you’ve identified your goal, pick an application that helps you accomplish that goal and nothing more. Extra features mean more bugs and less focus. Microsoft Office is the perfect example of an over-featured application: it does so many things for so many different types of users that most of us are scared to dive into its seemingly unending menus and settings. If you just need to write, use a simple text editor like Notepad on Windows or TextEdit on the Mac. Good software gets out of your way.

Life without MS Office? It's possible. Once I lived in it, now I use Word only for formal projects. Payne has some comments about online software too.

Ever more applications are moving online, and this poses a new set of challenges when trying to keep your computing experience simple and enjoyable. Chances are good that if an application requires that you sync over the internet in order for it to work, it’s going to be a source of frustration. Syncing is a perennial spring of bugs and lost data, as there’s plenty that can go wrong during a sync. Instead, put data that needs to be available to multiple computers on web-based applications. For example, rather than trying to sync your documents across computers, put the ones you need to share on Google Docs. Just don’t get in the habit of using web applications for everything — not everything needs sharing, they’re no good when you need to get to your stuff while offline.

The last sentence points out one facet of the CherryPal that will be interesting to review. I will have my little data stick handy.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Blogging Well Takes Time: Who Knew?

Is everyone blogging now? When blogging shows up in the comics pages, it's become a pastime as universal and as variously regarded as, say, golf.

What started out as an personal pastime has now been taken up by businesses and nonprofits in an attempt to connect with constituents. Beth Kantor has an excellent graph and analysis of just how much time a nonprofit staffer could spend monitoring and promoting a nonprofit's social blog. If you are still unsure how various social media work together, do take a look!

Thanks to fellow CherryPal Brand Angel Maggie McGary and her Mizz Information blog for passing this information along. Maggie has a few choice additions of her own. I'm still on the learning curve and figure this blog is a place to share the good things I find.