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Tools Dept.

Tools Dept. A world-class HTML5 software development studio. Whether it's a website, web app, or mobile web app We love hugging trees as much as the next person.

However, being environmentally friendly has a slightly different meaning to us. When speaking of the environment, we're not talking about polar bears or global warming. Our focus is the Consumer Environment, and more specifically, putting you right in the middle of it. Whether you want to build a companion game to your recently released feature film, a socially-networked app for your television sh

However, being environmentally friendly has a slightly different meaning to us. When speaking of the environment, we're not talking about polar bears or global warming. Our focus is the Consumer Environment, and more specifically, putting you right in the middle of it. Whether you want to build a companion game to your recently released feature film, a socially-networked app for your television sh

I think it's interesting how the 'industry' follows what the 'experts' say, even when the writing (to the contrary) has ...
04/24/2013
It's about time: RuneScape dumps Java for HTML5

I think it's interesting how the 'industry' follows what the 'experts' say, even when the writing (to the contrary) has been on the wall for quite some time.

HTML5 is 'the future' not only because it is a superior, albeit embryonic, technology, but because the foundation is being laid across the world of tech right now.

Another win for HTML5!
http://cnet.co/13vhG70

A widely used online game and longtime Java ally is ditching Oracle's security-plagued programming technology. Your move, Minecraft. Read this article by Stephen Shankland on CNET News.

Yet another win for consumers. Saying goodbye to unnecessary and bloated plugins is a big step in the right direction fo...
04/16/2013
Netflix plans to dump Silverlight for HTML5 streaming

Yet another win for consumers. Saying goodbye to unnecessary and bloated plugins is a big step in the right direction for HTML5 and, because this is Netflix... it's also another huge vote of confidence for using the web as an application platform.

http://news.cnet.com/8301-1023_3-57579753-93/netflix-plans-to-dump-silverlight-for-html5-streaming/

Movie-rental service plans to switch its streaming over to the emerging video format as soon as three WC3 initiatives are complete. Read this article by Steven Musil on CNET News.

I finally figured out the iPhone's "Do Not Disturb" feature. I have always had trouble understanding this feature and it...
03/06/2013

I finally figured out the iPhone's "Do Not Disturb" feature. I have always had trouble understanding this feature and it really bugged me as to why I was having a difficult time figuring it out. It also made me feel like I was not using an Apple product. One of the reasons that I am a self-professed Apple fan boy is because of the care that is taken in the design process of their products, right down to the tiniest and last detail. But this DND feature made me feel like I was not using an Apple product.

Consistency of functionality across the user experience is critical. Why? Because there are people out there like me who take things very, very literally. Additionally, I learn from evaluating a certain behavior, and then forecasting that experience into my interactions with similar, or what I perceive to be similar, features. As an example, when I flick the "Silence" switch on the left side of my iPhone (near the volume buttons), my iPhone immediately changes it's notification profile from audible to silent (or vibrate, depending upon how I set it up). So when I turn on "Do Not Disturb", I assume that, immediately, the "Do Not Disturb" feature is active and I will not be disturbed. After all, that would seem to make sense. However, many times, after turning on DND, a text message or email gets delivered to my phone and it audibly notifies me. Whaaa?!?

Cutting to the chase, when you turn on the "Do Not Disturb" feature in Settings, it is not yet active and your iPhone will still alert you to incoming notifications. The "Do Not Disturb" feature is only active once you turn the feature on and after you lock your iPhone. Even though the "Do Not Disturb" feature description clearly says that. Even after reading the directions several times, I still didn't get it because my expectation of how that feature should work, based every interaction I've ever had with a similar feature, told me that when I turn something on, it is on… right then.

This was an important lesson for me to learn, taking the consideration and design process of the user experience to a whole new level for me, as I continue to develop applications being used by thousands of people all over the world.

I just completed A/B Testing on my website to determine which design attracted and captivated more visitors/viewers. The...
02/18/2013

I just completed A/B Testing on my website to determine which design attracted and captivated more visitors/viewers.

The results are in... and they are pretty staggering.

In a blind test conducted on 100% of the visitors to my site (meaning that half of them saw the old design and half of them saw the new design) I had a:

23% increase in the total number of Pageviews
111% increase in total Pages Per Visit
28% decrease in the number of visitors who left prematurely

and a whopping 660% increase in Average Visit Duration!

The verdict is in. Expect to see the new site design implemented soon.

I just published a mood tracking and sharing app in the Chrome Web Store. It's free. Check it out :) http://t.co/z9MVMyb...
10/18/2012
m00d

I just published a mood tracking and sharing app in the Chrome Web Store. It's free. Check it out :) http://t.co/z9MVMybU

Note: since it's in the Chrome store, you can only download it to Google Chrome. If you don't have, use, or like Chrome... don't let that stop you . You can test out this simple little free app by pointing any modern browser to http://toolsdept.com/m00d

An anonymous, user-generated, global mood map.

Had a great time plundering the Bay with the Pirates of Silicon Valley
08/13/2012

Had a great time plundering the Bay with the Pirates of Silicon Valley

An entire site re-design is on it's way! Here's a sneak peak. Stay tuned...
06/25/2012

An entire site re-design is on it's way! Here's a sneak peak. Stay tuned...

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I recently published the re-skinning of my website. Check it out if your so inclined :) http://toolsdept.com
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