Browsing articles from "April, 2013"

Creative Cloud for teams

Apr 30, 2013
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Imagine if your team always had the best tools. Imagine if they could save time by seamlessly sharing files from any device. Well this is what Creative Cloud for teams (CCT) is all about.

The latest offering from Adobe looks at a membership service which gives your team access to the entire Adobe Creative Suite 6 desktop apps as well as Adobe Muse, Acrobat XI, Lightroom 4, Edge tools and services…you get the drift. Lots!

This brings a new way of thinking – you don’t have to foresee what you might move into using before buying – it’s all there for you to use when you are ready to use it. Subscription is also easier on the pocket and you always get new apps and feature updates as soon as they are released. Your team members are able to file share and with 100GB per seat you can also distribute by your different team member’s roles – for example John working in video production might get allocated 150GB and Joe in graphics might get allocated 30GB storage space. You can also add and reduce seats as your business fluctuates during the year.

Log into Creative Cloud to download the software apps for your desktop computer (Photoshop, Muse, Illustrator etc) and to use services such as Creative Cloud Files (for storing and organizing your files into the cloud where you can access them on different machines/devices), Business Catalyst (for hosting up to 5 websites) and Typekit (for accessing amazing fonts for your websites).

When your files are up in the cloud (you can simply drag and drop your files if you like!), you can send a link to your file if you wish for previewing – for example, if you want to send your InDesign file to someone who doesn’t have InDesign, send them a link and they can preview your InDesign file, turn pages, and easily see what typefaces and colours you’ve used in your file. Very handy.

Creative Cloud link view

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Something to be aware of, for each CCT license you can have only two ‘activations’ i.e you can download the software apps onto two machines only – commonly this would be your workplace machine and perhaps your home machine. Don’t fret too much tho, it’s easy enough to deactivate one machine and activate another if you go on a spending spree and buy a new machine for home :).

All in all Creative Cloud is the way forward in our eyes. Lets us know your thoughts if you’re using it…

Pocket – how to manage your reading

Apr 22, 2013
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Sometimes there isn’t enough time to read everything that is sent to you. People email you links to articles which they say you “must read!” – but you can’t read them right now. Even with the best of intentions, you probably won’t read it. The main reason for this is because it falls off your radar.

Pocket has been around for a while. It was previously called Read it Later. Pocket is a system made up of a simple website, an iOS/Android app and some plug-ins for Chrome, Safari and Firefox. (Safari has a Reading list, but this works on all devices everywhere)

The concept is pretty simple. You create an account on http://www.getpocket.com and install the Pocket app on your iPad, iPhone and Android device. Next, add the browser plug-ins. These give you a simple one touch icon to your Safari, Chrome or Firefox browser which quickly adds the page you are currently looking at to Pocket.

Plug in

 

 

To look at your list of reading, open the Pocket app on your iPad, iPhone or Android device (or web browser) and read away. You can do this anywhere you get some spare time. Once you have read the article, click the “tick” icon and it comes off your reading list and goes into Archive so you can look it up later if you need to. There is a great little instructional video on the Pocket website.

Give Pocket a go – it really helps you with those websites which are a “read once” article. No need to make a bookmark in your browser – it keeps those clean. Oh, and it is free.

I want more speed!

Apr 16, 2013
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In the past the best way to speed up your computer was to add more RAM. Typically the motto was “you can never have too much RAM”. Lately that has changed. The rise of reasonably priced solid state drives (SSD) to replace the hard drive in your computer has meant that we can all get a major speed-up for our slightly older machines.

Why the speed boost?
Modern computer operating systems have a concept called virtual memory (VM). VM is used when you push your computer beyond the physical RAM limit and it starts to use your hard drive as extended memory. This isn’t good – accessing data from RAM is thousands of times faster than accessing data from the hard drive. (Hard drives are just spinning – magnets similar to an old record player! A SSD looks like a hard drive, but is all memory chips, no moving parts and FAST).

When VM is used off an SSD – it is quick. So even a Macbook Air with 2GB of RAM can keep up with a Macbook Pro in your studio (obviously not in graphical tasks as the Macbook Air has a pretty weak graphics card compared to a Macbook Pro or iMac).

Something to think about
If you have a Macbook Air – you already have an SSD. If you have a Macbook, Macbook Pro, Mac Pro or some models of iMac, you can get an SSD retro fitted (get your tech guru to check it out for you). The performance gain is huge! It’ll give you a little bit more life out of your existing hardware. Applications launch quicker, files open faster, Mail/Safari/iCal all operate far more smoothly. All pluses. (The only downside is the price per GB – a 256GB SSD costs around $450). This is a highly recommended performance boost for any computer. If you already have 8GB of RAM and are looking for a bit more speed, an SSD will beat more RAM hands down.