Next of Kin

That was quick:

Microsoft’s Kin phone was announced in April. It launched in May. And it died in June.

Microsoft plans to pull the plug on Kin and integrate the Kin staff into the Windows Phone 7 team following sluggish sales, sources “close to Microsoft” tell Engadget and CNET.

Meanwhile, in Cupertino…

Apple Inc.’s newest iPhone was in hot demand as hundreds lined up outside stores in Tokyo, Berlin, New York and elsewhere to become among the first to own the device

Ben Davis Students Revamp Website

While I was working with X-Mester at Vincennes University earlier this month, I put on a little nickle-and-dime web design show and we redesigned the Ben Davis University High School homepage. You can view the current site at http://www.wayne.k12.in.us/bduhs/.

With input from the students (who had never worked with web stuff before) and my refusal to use shit like Comic Sans, WordArt, ClipArt or generally anything ending in the word “art”, we put together a pretty nice page in under four hours of work:

My Business

I don’t often chat much about my business endeavors online — not even on my own blog. I mention it, however, because I’m proud of my business, Justify Studios, but I don’t talk much about some of the stuff I do with it.

I’ve been working on a new slate of improvements for myself and my business. I’ve introduced a new support system, so anyone who wants to open a request for support can do so without needing to remember my email address. Soon, people can email a specific address and they’ll automatically be tabulated into the support system and there they will be able to monitor their support requests whenever the want, 24/7.

I’ll be updating my portfolio of work, soon, too. Right now, all of the sites on there were done before I started working full time for myself. I have dozens of new projects that I love that I need to get online. Namely, Jake’s website, Springs of Cambridge and FAIR. I’ve got half a dozen more sites in the pipeline, three of which are days away from publication.

I’ve added an online store that, while a little rough around the edges, is a good first go. I’ll be adding more stuff into it, but customers can now come directly to my website and purchase a new website immediately. If they know what they want, who am I to stop them from buying what they want so long as it fits in the guidelines of the contracts for that product? Want a blog? Super, just go buy one — custom made, directly via PayPal or cash on delivery. It’s like buying a birthday cake at a family-run bakery.

I’ll be adding a “Learning” section someday, too. Currently, it’s a walled-off area for clients to learn about their new website.

Speaking of things for clients, I’m now blasting off great looking HTML emails to clients to let them know the progress of their site after I’ve spent at least an hour working on it. It tells them what I’ve done, what I need to do and where they can view their site while in development. To ask questions, they simply just need to reply to the email. No one else offers that level of updating and progress reporting.

And, my proudest new goal: be even faster. I’ve long been told that I’m blazing fast at getting to most things. Technical issues and errors are priority 1 and site updates, development, etc. all falls into line after that. Every client I’ve ever had that asked a question or for something to be done has responded at some point to say, “Wow. That was fast.” Now, I have a new goal of responding to every client’s email within 1 hour. Yes, that won’t always happen, but between my time at home and with my iPhone and iPad, it can work. And, I have a goal of getting new site changes and requests done in 24 hours or less. Not to mention getting new sites developed under time.

I’ve been at this for 6 months and have managed to be just as successful as I set out to be. Initially, I said, “Make at least as much money as you would if you still worked for the State of Indiana.” Today, I did the math, and I’ve discovered I’m $3,000 over my goal. I’m right where I wanted to be. Actually, I’m about a month ahead.

Here’s to the next 6 months and years. Thanks to all of my clients and friends who have referred me business.

Old Pizza Guys

Brandon ordered a pizza this evening. He didn’t want my chili, evidently.

The delivery person was an elderly gentleman, the second of such delivery guys who have clearly been over the hill for some time to come from the Pizza Hut on Emerson Ave.

My issue with that is that this defies all logic of who I think the pizza guy should be. It should be a pizza boy, not a pizza guy. I’ll be sexist and say I don’t even want females delivering pizza. When that doorbell rings, there had better be a pimply, grotesquely greasy 18-year-old standing there holding something that is allegedly  a pizza.

When an old guy answers the door, I immediately assume this man can’t afford his medication or some other vital necessity and he has to deliver pizzas to make up for it. This results in a larger tip from me, which is even more bothersome. Then, I get to watch him saunter down my driveway to his car as he hobbles along. I’m left standing there with a barking dog and wondering if that poor soul is going to fall down and break his hip.

My god, what if that man fought in a war? What if he was the guy who planted a flag in Korea, Kuwait or Vietnam!? The guy that just left could have easily been old enough to have fought in Vietnam.

The result? When I order a pizza, I go pick it up from the store. I’m not paying a guy $3 to deliver a pizza up the street from me (they could throw it out the window of the store and it’d make it halfway to my driveway). Plus, I could drive around I-465 on $3. That, and I’m afraid an old guy is going to deliver it.

So, in conclusion, America is screwed because old people are delivering pizzas.