Creating a simple web 2.0 favicon – Tutorial

Inspired with the favicon design of web 2.0 sites like Tech Crunch, Lifehacker, Technorati, etc? Well follow this simple tutorial for creating web 2.0 fav icon using Photoshop. All you need is just Adobe Photoshop software installed.

favicon1.giffavicon2.giffavicon3.gif

Ok let’s get started!

Open a new project in Photoshop either by navigating to File > New or just press Ctrl + N.

pic1.gif

Now make sure the width and height its 400px so that you can get a square shaped fav icon with the background color as white.

Now select the desired background color you want to use for your fav icon by clicking set foreground color as show in the figure. Choose a nice web 2.0 color from the Color library.

pic2.gif

pic4.gif

After selecting the BG color to be used, in the tool box of the Photoshop select Gradient tool or just press (G).

Now below the menu bar you will get a gradient color option, which looks similar to the screenshot posted below, click it and select foreground to transparent palette.pic5.gif

After selecting, drag your mouse from the outermost top of the project to its extreme end via +y to –y axis and leave down to get a color background. While dragging if you seem to have white color over the bottom then press ctrl + z to re-drag and this time drag it out of the bottom extreme to make the white color disappear,

After getting desired web2.0 background for the fav icon, select the horizontal text tool from the tool box and type the first name of your website or added two different layers of text if you need two initials in your fav icon.

After typing your desired initial, select a color for the text which matches the background perfectly or your website theme. (Basically both the background and foreground should match the website theme color). But if you add two initials in the fav icon make sure you give two different colors then.

Now the next part is the optional part of adding 3-d effect. If you satisfy with the current design you can skip this step otherwise add a bevel or emboss effect to the text by right clicking the text and selecting the blending option.

pic7.gif

That’s it now the next process is exporting the created project as jpeg image by navigating to File > Save as > and selecting jpeg as format and click save.

The exported jpeg can be easily converted to .ico favicon by visiting this website.

Please forgive me if you have expected more about the design coz I have already mentioned the title as how to design a “SIMPLE” web 2.0 icon which made my tutorial concise after all this is my first tutorial. I have uploaded the .PSD files and made available for download which you can modify according to your wish.

Last but not least, I am expecting your comments and suggestions

Download: Sample 1 | Sample 2 | Sample 3 (PSD Format).

[update]: Sample 2,3 are live at Technical Blog & BlogTalkz please don’t inherit the same design.

Start your own mobile company – no kidding its true!

sonologo.png

Who said you need blocks of investment for starting your mobile company? No investments, no risks, just a few clicks can make you start your very own Virtual mobile company. Still don’t believe me chill out your snooping and read carefully.sonopialan.png

Sonopia a website dedicated in new kind of mobile marketing allows a user to create his own mobile company by choosing a Sonopia profile which allows to customize your company name, logo, plans you want to sell including mobile content and webpage (just like a reseller) with high end themes.

“Our mission is to provide every organization, group or club with the opportunity to create branded mobile service and build a unique mobile and web community of supporters and members. “- Sonopia

You can either host the page in their server or create your own and start marketing so you get a percentage amount of the telephone bill paid by your customers. You tend to get commissions for selling plans and mobile phones. The drawback is that Sonopia allows only US residents to create a profile where International users still have to wait for to include mobile plans for your country.

Still waiting for a good time? Start creating your own mobile now!

Links: Sonopia | Create your own Company |

Tips to beat the heat this summer

beattheheat.gifThis summer is not going to pass like the usual summer because year 2007 is known to be hottest year ever. The combination of global warming and the El Niño weather phenomenon makes this year hotter than any other year. So your expectations of summer heat will probably be higher than the usual summer.

As a public awareness it’s our duty to take care of our health to beat the heat. Here are some quick tips to make it up for the heat.

Basically we tend to expose more of our body to sun especially during summer which results in the loss of water from our body by process of draining (Sweat) and so there is a lack of resistance and energy. So maintaining the body water level is very important.

The simple best way to prevent your eye from heat exposure is to wear sunglasses. But if your sunglasses are not worth to protect your eyes from UV rays then throw it out. Already due to the depletion of Ozone layer, we are highly prone to UV rays, so the next times when you wear sunglasses make sure it protects you from UV rays.

  • In taking plenty of liquid foods like Juice, sodas, beer, shakes, WATER.
  • It is better to avoid heavy and fatty foods especially those which are oily.
  • Fruits are the best active energy agents that keep you active ever. As we all know a famous quote “An apple a day keeps the doctor away” fruits like grapes, watermelon keeps your body cool and regulate the heat.
  • Non-vegetarian foods should be avoided. Do not eat out-side or street cooked foods, try to switch for fresh and green vegetables at least for this summer.

Also summer heat makes your hair brittle leading to hair damage. Try to use hair moisturizes if you don’t use alternative hair polishers like coconut oil, cream, gel etc. Whenever you leave outside, it’s advisory to wear a hat to prevent direct ray exposing your hair. At least carry an umbrella whenever you go outside.

Try to avoid outing always, reduce your travels and air condition your house if possible or try to ventilate at most as possible. For protecting your screen use Sunscreen lotion.

Non-vegetarian foods should be avoided. Do not eat out-side or street cooked foods, try to switch for fresh and green vegetables at least for this summer.

Optimize your internet speed in GPRS Dial-up connection

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The usage of internet is evolving greatly with people switching to latest technological advancements like broadband, ADSL, Wi-Fi etc. But there are some exceptional who still use the Dial-up connection via modem or GRPS. One of a good folk from ThinkDigit forum has found a trick for GRPS Internet users.

Basically GPRS dial-up connections are mostly used by mobile personals, whereas this trick does not apply for them but for those who temporarily use GRPS dial-up internet in their home. By increasing the Signal Reception in your mobile, you can optimize the internet speed gradually.

Here is a concise info about the trick:

All u need is:
– A lengthy old Antenna for TV or Radio (2 Antenna of abt 1Meter is Recommended)
– A Standard Speaker Wire of about 1 Meter (Transperant with red lines)
– A Spring of 5 to 10 mm
– Two Mousqito Coil Stands
– Blade
– Tape
– Scissor
– A Small Cardboard Box to fix the Antenna (CPU box Size is Ideal)
– A Metal Stip of ur Mobile Phone size.

After gathering all these stuff follow the procedure listed here.
Source: ThinkDigit Forum.

Print and Build your own toys via Readymech

A site called Readymechs allows download of free ready made flatpack toys for you to print and build. These flat packs are designed to fit in an 8.5″x11″ page which you can print with your printer.

A double-sided tape, thick matte paper, and 10-15 minutes for build time are more than enough for overall toy construction. By downloading the PDF formatted designs, it is easy for you to customize the toy even by adding your own company name, wishes, compliment messages etc.

Now you have a coolest way to give unique gifts . Just browse through their collection for a series of unique designs to choose from with “built in design instructions”. Just Burn up the designs, customize them and print in your way.. visit Readymech !

Also Techtites listed Fake i-phone toy which you can print and build up to fake others.. You the download the source here.  [Thanks Shankar Ganesh !]

Easy Photoshop Tutorials that makes you a Graphic Designer

Want to become a Graphics Designer ? Its simply and easy according to a site called The Design World. TDW offers a massive collection of free design resources and hundreds of downloads for Photoshop.

The member community at TDW have contributed hundreds of Photoshop tutorials that makes your graphics manipulation easier and simple. When i first visited this site, i was with a little confidence that the steps prescribed in this site seem as usual as other tutorials but they are completely different.

Tutorials described in this site is easy to understand with screen scrap for each and every steps that are specially designated as “Tutorials for Dummies”. I designed a lot bunch of banners, graphics by following their easy tutorials. Even the header of this blog was designed based on their tips.

The steps posted in TDW will surely boost your Graphical skills. Check out the awesome tutorials in The Design World.

Creating custom url for your Orkut Profile

When you compare sites like HI5, Bebo, LinkedIn, Friendster with Orkut the main bit Orkut lacking was a Custom URL for your profile page.

                                  A Custom URL is a small and easy to remember web URL by which one can access a profile page in a site. Basically one cannot remember the long URL provided by Orkut for your profile, so instead its easy to create a custom url which re-directs to the URL provided by Orkut.

Creating a Custom Url in Google Pages (Free):

  • Login to Google Page Creator with Your Google accounts username and password
  • Either create a new site or choose the Create Another site from the drop down box available at the top right corner of the page
  • The next step is about choosing an address which is going to be the URL of your Orkut profile, so enter the profile name you want for your url basically it should be like this http://yourdesiredname.googlepages.com which will re-direct you to the Orkut profile.
  • Say for example you want to use “XXXX” as your profile url then you should enter xxxx in the box provided for choosing an address and click Check Availability to see if the entered name is available or not.
  • Select any layout and a starting look because because it has nothing to do with your url.
  • Making sure you have entered the desired URL and check if its available or not, then click the Create Site Button.
  • Now you have successfully created a site, click the [no title] link in the page name column to make it open.
  • There you go, you are ready to edit the page where Google pages allows you to add title and other bla bla things. But you don’t have to touch them just click the [edit html] link at bottom right corner of the page.
  • Type the following javascript code in any part of the blank page.

<script>
window.location = “your link here”;
</script>

  • Replace your link here with your orkut profile url which will basically look like this http://www.orkut.com/Profile.aspx?uid=8454709067165079466
  • You can find your profile url by login into Orkut and clicking the Profile link in your homepage, then copy the profile link which appears in the address bar.
  • After making changes in the javascript code click the Save Changes button
  • Now click Publish button to publish your webpage. Cool you are ready to launch your custom url.
  • Just navigate to your address bar and type http://xxx.googlepages.com (example) and click ok ……..zooooooooooooo you will be re-directed to your orkut profile page.

Advantages of using this technique:

  • You can easily share your profile URL with your friends, family or post this URL in your weblog or website.
  • Now they no longer need to remember those long URL to add you as friend.

Also you can create a custom url in your domain name (if you own a domain address) by using the .htaccess technique. You can also use re-direction service sites like SnipUrl, Co.nr, shorturls.co.uk and other sites but it depends on own risk whereas by using this technique you have a google domain url.

Please comment if you have any queries and help related to this technique. Your suggestions are most expected.

Thanks Haochi for the JavaScript code.

Test your Anti-Virus Integrity and Power

                                    
                                            Do you doubt that your Anti-Virus is not efficient? Want to test the Integrity and Power of your Anti-Virus ? Here is a simple way to do this. The below step is about creating a fake malware signature which makes your anti-virus to detect it. Please don’t be panic about this experiment because it just a fake malware creation and it has nothing to attack your computer.

  • Right click your desktop and select > New > Text Document or click Start > Run and type notepad.
  • A new text document is created in your desktop, open the newly created text document if it is not opened.
  • Copy the following text (Excluding Quotes).       

“X5O!P%@AP[4\PZX54(P^)7CC)7}$EICAR-STANDARD-ANTIVIRUS-TEST-FILE!$H+H*”

  • Now Save the notepad with any file name and close it. Open your Anti-virus and Scan the notepad file you edited now.

Your Anti-Virus should now Alert you about a Malware called EICAR Test-Not Virus!!. Congratulations on using a working Anti-virus. Note just delete the notepad or follow your Anti-Virus Instructions.

Thanks: Babu.

Use Windows and Office in 10 Indian languages

Its not always that English is the only way to learn Windows, but you can use Windows in your local Language too. Although this feature is available for a long time but many of them are still unaware of it.

                            With LIP you have the ability to switch your Windows XP Graphical User Interface to any language you want. Currently Microsoft supports 10 local languages of India. LIP or Language Interface Pack is a language package that simply changes your Windows GUI in desired language. Microsoft releases LIP in two form one for Windows GUI and other for Office GUI.

                             These language packs promotes regional users to interact easily with computer without knowing the standard language. Moreover it narrows the value of information technology by promoting it regionally.

Download Windows Interface Pack | Office Interface Pack.

Optimizing Zone Alarm for low performance systems

Security threat over Internet has become high and there is a need for standard protection across computers.For users who use Zone Alarm Internet Security Suite, i have some tips for optimizing and tweaking its settings by which you can use it as compatible with your low performance or slower systems.

After installing the Zone Alarm Internet Suite, open it and

  • Go to Email Protection, if you use external email client like outlook express etc then it is recommend to turn it on other wise turn off the radio buttons of the Inbound mail safe protection, outbound mail safe protection and Junk email.
  • Go to Parental Control, unless your system is not used by any kid you can turn off Parental control.
  • Go to Identity Protection and move the slider to Med. Generally you don’t need to give that importance for your identity but its best recommended to be at middle level.
  • Now Go to Firewall and in the Internet Zone Security, move the slider to Med from High, you don’t want to be in stealth coz your are not that important to be traced 🙂 and also do the same for Trusted Zone Security.
  • ok lets come to the main part, the Anti Virus / Anti-Spyware. i personally believe that one doesn’t need a 24 hour spy ware monitor. Just turn off the Anti-spyware and leave the Anti-Virus untouched coz if you turn it off then there’s no reason of installing an AV. You can turn on the Anti-Spyware when you do a full system scan.
  • Now go to Overview and in the preferences tab, uncheck the option Share my security settings anonymously with Zone labs.

Thats it now your slower system may seem little faster even after installing Zone Alarm Internet Security Suite.

Try Zone Alarm Internet Suite:
Get it from CNET Download.com!