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Image of the week: Is technology ruling our lives?

Image is protected by copyright unless you buy it starting from only 1,95$ from: http://www.yayimages.com/stock-image/hacker-with-laptop/8459790

Image is protected by copyright unless you buy it starting from only 1,95$ from: http://www.yayimages.com/stock-image/hacker-with-laptop/8459790

The more the time passes the more i get the impression that things changed dramatically in the latest years and we aren’t really consciously aware of it.
Image of the week comes from cookelma and got me thinking of the way technology changed the world.
Technology has risen with enormous power and speed, from the time we used it only to make our lives easier, to the present where, in my personal opinion, technology is ruling us. All of us are working on a computer, going home and relaxing with the computer, always in constant connection on the internet with our smartphones and tablet PCs. Nowadays even small children have smartphones and laptops. Sometimes i wonder why does a child that is only 4 years old needs a latest version of a smartphone. Then i remembered the classical generation gap that our parents and the book told us about. Years pass and everything evolves, and the older we get the hardest it is for us to understand and adjust to the changes that seem to occur with the speed of light. We need to remember that the world changes and moves even if we don’t want to change and move along with it. We can hide ourselves and live as rudimentary as possible and get frustrated when we will realize that we live outside of this time, or we could just embrace change and take advantage of what this era brings, with the good and the bad altogether. Acceptance and constant learning are the keys to handling the technological boom and the changing of the life we thought we knew.

What’s so great about this picture?

  •  It relates to a very actual topic – thew technology boom
  •  It has a sort of darkness that makes it mysterious and dramatic.
  • The way the model is dressed and looks behind the laptop can mean two different things: either he is a hacker therefore his identity has to stay hidden, either he is a man that has fallen pray to technology and spends his life as an internet junkie, living behind the computer.
  • Has lots of copy space on the laptop, on the hoodie and on the background where you can write your own messages/ slogans.
  • The colors are simple and classical, they don’t tire the eye.

How could we use it?

  1.  As book, magazines and newspapers covers and inside article picture.
  2. Part of a website layout, background, header for blogs, etc.
  3. Campaigns to promote a lifestyle that is not focused on technology.
  4. An advert for a optical clinic with a possible slogan like: “Spending a lot of time in front of the computer will hurt your eyes. Get protective eyeglasses and save your precious vision!”
  5. An advert for a new anti-virus to help protect your computer. Hackers are always trying to attack your PC with viruses and Trojans.
  6. An advert for a company software that helps store your files in case your PC brakes down.
  7. A teaser commercial for a new computer brand/software.
  8. Educative campaigns to raise awareness of the danger that lurks in the shadows of the internet. People are harassed by others on the internet based on the presumption that no one can actually see them. Not to mention the dangers of internet dating where you can never be sure the person you are talking with is who he/she says he/she is.

 

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Test site launch

Server

Yay! Finally, after months of delay (due to the change in CTO), we’re ready with a new site improvement!

Today we release the test server for public viewing and testing. We’ll keep the test server open, so if you want to follow the next upgrades and changes you can use the same link later on! (check it out on dtest.yaymicro.com)

In the future we’ll have small, but frequent changes to the site – and we have planned many improvements in 2009.

 

Views

Views

First of all – the most requested feature from our photographers have been views. And yes, this upgrade includes views! We have placed the views in your portfolios, and you can check it out now if you visit our test server. As customers in general are not interested in views, and it creates an imbalance in image exposure, we have not included views on the search result page.

We noticed that some photographers have a much more exposed portfolio than others, and we’ll try to make it easier for photographers to promote their portfolios. We’ll also work on our search algorithm, as we’re not satisfied with the relevance ranking and lack of shuffle when many images got the same properties.

 

Usability

UsabilityThe main focus in this release has been on customer usability and search engine optimization.

We have removed noise from the front, price and preview page and we’ve also improved the cart page. In the next release we’ll continue with improving the payment page and the flow of activities from arriving on the site till check-out.

In addition to removing noise we’ve made Call-to-Action buttons on many of the pages. This will help customer understand what the next step is on the site. (You shouldn’t have to look for the Buy-button.) We want the customers to search & buy images. The blog, forum and other pages are useful resources for returning customers, subscribers, photographers etc., but when in focus as it was on the old version of our site it became to distracting.  Also, it’s no longer possible to perform empty searches, as this generated confusion for the customers.

Our experience the last couple of months is that it’s difficult to communicate the difference in price for creative and editorial images, and the sale for editorial images has been much lower than the sale of creative images. The price for editorial images is therefore reduced, and is now the same as for creative images. This makes it’s easy to communicate our prices, and the customer won’t get confused or annoyed when one image costs more than another.

 

Language

Language

The site is fully translated to Norwegian. Soon we’ll release a Chinese version as well. Other languages are planned – and if you have any suggestions on what countries/languages could be a potential good market for YAY we’ll appreciate the feedback! It’s fairly easy to translate the site to other languages as most of the programming is in place now after the initial translation.

We have included several search languages, namely Norwegian, Swedish, Danish, English, Chinese, Japanese, French, Spanish and German. These are automatically translated with the help of the Google Translate API, so if you get any strange results – or no results – e-mail us and we’ll adjust the search.

 

Other improvements

New pages for price, FAQ (coming soon), photographers and prices. You’ll find the links at the bottom of the pages.

New links / new structure at the top of the site.

Improved preview site with a C2A-button, easier to search with image keywords, show/hide information related to the image.

Improved cart with a C2A-button, less noise, new lay out, easier to check out.

Improved Search Engine Optimization (SEO) for the whole site.

Customers get high-res images on subscription.

Some of the changes might take some time getting used to, but the overall experience of surfing the YAY-site has in our opinion improved a great deal!

 

FeedbackFeedback

As mentioned the test site will be kept open for the public. If you want to see what’s coming next, and join the discussion about changes, use it as much as you like. I’ll start a thread in the forum where we can discuss what’s going on. I would love feedback, and I’ll try to listen as much as possible to all our users. Of course, sometimes we’ll have to make some decisions that might not fly with everyone, but at least we’ll do our very best to explain our reasons.

 

Thats all for now, have a great weekend :)

Linda & Bjorn

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