Blue Awesome Blog

WP Security for Site Owners

I got an email from my (new/awesome) hosting company SiteGround today about a WordPress Security session online that they are sponsoring, and it sounds great. If you’re a site owner and you would like to learn more about securing your site, you might want to sit in on this session. It’s Saturday, May 17th from about 1-4pm, and you can register for $30. I’ll be there, will you?

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This ‘Horizontal Dock’ is like a Captain’s Chair for your Mac

Horizontal Macbook Doc

Ever since making the switch from an iMac to a Retina Macbook Pro last year, I’ve been looking around for a dock to slap my laptop down in whenever I’m working from my desk. I have a ton of gadgets that require USB or Firewire slots, and it would be nice to not have to hook them up every time I sit down to work.

Enter the Horizontal Dock from Henge Docks. Not only is this one of the few Retina Macbook Pro specific docks I’ve ever seen, it looks gorgeous. In fact, it almost looks like a captain’s chair for your Mac, which is awesome. I’m a huge geek and this dock would look great in my office, and I can’t wait for it to come out.

You can preorder one for for $299, but fair warning, these have been in preorder mode for over a year now. They say it is coming in 2014, but we’ll see. I know I wouldn’t mind combining this with one of the cheap (but awesome) IPS displays and really getting my workspace into shape.

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Thanks to instantShift and SmashingShare

It’s been pretty quiet around here lately, sorry about that! I’ve been so busy I haven’t had much time for blogging, but I wanted to give a quick thanks to a couple website that featured Blue Awesome recently.

First up is instantShift, and their post 70+ Fresh WordPress Site Designs for Inspiration. I’m in good company there, thanks for including me!

Next is SmashingShare and their article Blue in Web Design – 45 Inspiring Examples. Again, lots of great designs in that post, and I’m honored to be included.

I’ll have some fresh content here soon. In the meantime, you should add me on Google+, I’m really digging it and can’t wait to completely ditch Facebook for it.

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The TJ Maxx School of Marketing

TJ Maxx iPad

If you read any gadget or technology blogs like CNET, Engadget, or Gizmodo, I’m sure you heard all about the bizzarre appearance of Apple’s iPad at some TJ Maxx and Marshall’s locations for $100 less than retail price.

Bloggers all over the country were trying to figure out how this obscure chain was able to undercut megastores like Wal-Mart, Target, and Best Buy, all while gadget-savvy consumers were busy checking in on their local stores to see if they could find a deal.

The incident even got the official disapproval of Steve Jobs himself, leaving the situation even more curious.

Fast forward a couple days, and now we know that TJ Maxx bought the iPads at retail price and took a loss. They knew the stunt would get them national attention on gadget blogs and create interest in their business, and it worked. Cult of Mac reports that the number of iPads sold could actually be quite low, so for a small loss they generated a huge stir and got a lot of people to set foot in a TJ Maxx for the first (and possibly last) time.

Genius?

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WordPress SEO Plugin by Yoast

WordPress SEO is a new plugin by Joost de Valk that finally makes search engine optimization in WordPress seem like a built in feature. I used All-in-One SEO pack for a long time, but was never 100% satisfied with the plugin, especially the interface.

Joost’s plugin not only features a great interface, it actually handles the functions I was using three plugins to do before. WordPress SEO features XML sitemap building that works better than the standalone plugin I was previously using, and it also enables you to add content to your RSS feeds.

The plugin has very detailed options that allow you to control every aspect of your site’s SEO. You can set defaults for page titles and meta descriptions, choose what you want to limit from the search engines with a comprehensive indexation page, and even add SEO-friendly breadcrumbs.

The best part, in my opinion, is the options panel you see on pages and posts (pictured above). There you can override any default content in your title and description, but it even includes a preview of what the URL will look like in Google search results.

The plugin is still in beta, but I’ve already started using this on all my new sites, and I can’t wait to see what kind of updates Joost comes up with in the future.

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Special Thanks to Folio Focus and Design Fridge

I wanted to give a quick thanks to the fine folks behind Folio Focus and Design Fridge, two CSS Galleries that I check frequently. They included the new design for Blue Awesome on their sites this week, and I’m honored!

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