Monthly Archive for August, 2007

PHP & mySQL Ecommerce Software

I’ve worked on quite a few ecommerce and have used numerous software packages to set them up such as miva, candypress, zen cart, osCommerce, etc. What has frustrated me to no end is that there has never been a solid php & mysql shopping cart available…that I could find and be happy with. Well…it looks like my search is coming to an end! I’ve been tracking a new shopping cart software by Interspire that looks to be everything I have been looking for in a shopping cart package. It is currently in beta, but they constantly update their StoreSuite Blog with updates, videos, feedback, and all sorts of stuff that has me itchin’ like a kid counting down to Christmas.

Some of the features I’m stoked about are:

  • php & mysql!
  • Sweet Drag & Drop design mode
  • Shipping integration
  • Template driven to separate the content from design
  • SEO Friendly!!!! The URLs it generate are simply…yummy
  • AJAX used to enhance experience
  • Even the default layout they show blows away just about every other shopping cart software package I’ve ever seen

StoreSuite Shopping Cart Software
If you have an Ecommerce project coming up, I highly suggest you bookmark the StoreSuite shopping cart software by Interspire. You’ll be seeing a lot of websites using this in the near future. I can’t wait to set some of my own projects up with this!

Your Digital Resume Can Make or Break You

This is something that needs to be taught in grade school these days. I have seen many careers created and destroyed because of this issue and many people still go through their lives blissfully ignorant to how this will affect them down the road.

What am I talking about? Your digital resume. “What is a digital resume?” you might ask. Well, think of it as everything you do online that can be viewed by others. This includes MySpace, Facebook, Twitter, forums, websites where you leave comments, etc. ANYthing of yours online that can be seen by others is your digital resume. It is you and how your employers, clients, and customers will perceive you whether it’s the “real” you or not…to them it’s the real you. Period.

I’ve unfortunately worked on projects in the past where people were either fired or not hired based on certain activities they were involved in online. How were they discovered? Simple…just searched for their name on various sites. You might think you can be sneaky and use a nickname, but you’re going to slip up somewhere and that nickname is going to be linked to your real name…then the trail starts. It’s up to you how that trail looks. I can’t stress it enough to be conscious of what you do online. You may not give a hoot what people think about you and you may make a living going through life with that attitude, but just be aware that you’re not “hiding behind a computer screen” lobbing out an “online lifestyle” that is “different” that your real life. To people that come in your life down the road…the two are the same.

On the other hand…use your “digital resume” as a tool to build a foundation for where you want to be down the road. Participate on sites, forums, groups, etc that parallel your plans. Leave a trail that shows how you got to where you are today. The people you communicate with and that see your activity may end up being the people who pay for that roof over your head and the food on your table. Don’t lose site of that.

Remember this…perception is reality…especially in the online world. What you do will be seen by someone important to you down the road. It’s up to you as to how they will react.

The Future of AiO Students

Some of you may have wondered what has happened to this site as it was a great hangout for the students of The Art Institute Online. Well, the sad truth is that I got my degree, moved to a new state, started a new job, got married, bought a house, fixed up said house, and now my wife and I are expecting our first child! WHEW. So yeah, all of that happened in about 6 months. Needless to say, I’ve neglected this site and everything I had planned for it…BUT…I didn’t forget about it.

I have closed the forum off to new registrations, but I’ve left it open to view as it has a lot of great info about The Art Institute Online and the various fields of study. I don’t know what type of forum the Art Institute offers the students outside of class these days, but hopefully there’s something. I started the forums here simply because AiO didn’t offer anything like it at the time. They have since started Talk-On (the official school forums) and I hope it’s still up…because I’m retiring these forums. This was the first forum up and I like to think it sparked AiO’s desire to put together an official one…if not…oh well, let me think that anyway.

What I do have planned for this site, though, is something I hope many people will benefit from. I’ve been in the multimedia industry since around 1996 and have learned quite a bit that I want to share…specifically about interactive media. I’m going to share a ton of information moving forward that will definitely help anyone interested in interactive media and internet marketing.

If you’re thinking of attending The Art Institute Online…scan these articles and browse the forums to get the full scoop.

If you’re already attending…well…get your degree there and I’ll help you get an education. 😉

If you’re an alumni…CONGRATS! Now the real fun begins.

Buckle up with me and hang on…this will be a fun ride.