Category Archives: Computers/Internet

My Digital Beginnings


Ever since visiting the Bank of America building on Chicago’s Michigan Avenue in the 1960s, becoming a computer operator was my dream. Do you recognize this card? Way back in 1971, the 80-column punchcard marked the beginning of my digital life.

I labored alone on the swing shift at local manufacturing plant, and when my work was completed in the wee hours of the morning, I searched for something to keep me busy until it was time to clock out.

Lucky for me, I found a stack of punchcards labeled Mona Lisa, and when I ran the program, nonsense characters lined up one after another, as they plotted out an image of Mona Lisa on the blue and white striped page.

Thus began my love affair with digital art. Not long afterwords I began a study of art and graphic design, dead set on the concept that computers could and would make art.


A Little Macintosh History on TBT

Mohammed-AliIt was nearly 18 years ago that I had the opportunity to travel to San Francisco MacWorld ’98 where I met Mohammed Ali. The former Apple Master and Faculty member was already dealing with Parkinson’s Disease at the time. Still he stood and shook my hand, and graciously allowed me to photograph him with his son munching on goodies in the background.

The late 80’s and 90’s were certainly exciting times for Apple Computer, Inc., if not somewhat volatile with Steve Jobs leaving Apple and later returning to the helm. There was an ongoing technology debate through the late 80’s and 90’s : Mac vs. PC, a debate perhaps as volatile as religious or political debates get—that’s how confident were each platform’s users.

Press-badgeThat particular conference year was a turning point for me. It was time to learn the workings of e-commerce and web design—no more putting it off. But in the meantime, I decided to explore the interactive capabilities of Acrobat, with everything I needed to make an interactive newsletter with recorded sound and video.

Gregory-HinesI purchased a CD with all of the recordings that were presented at the conference by the Apple Masters: Actress, Jennifer Jason Leigh; dancer, Gregory Hines, and many more.

Standing at the foot of the stage, I was just a few feet away, as Hines tapped out his personal history using Apple’s “Mac,” as he referred to it. He started with an unnaturally slow click…click…click, and as he told he story of periodic upgrades, the clacking became louder and faster, until he could snap, clack, and tap no louder, faster or longer. Just Wow!

Important documents need protective packaging

Apple, Inc. sponsored ad for Educom '87If it’s Thursday, it must be throwback time.

While today, so much of our news is digital, electronic, and fleeting, all the more reason to protect your tangible items like photos, newspapers, cherished greeting cards and other important documents in clear protective bags. We don’t have any minimums on the quantity you order, and that can help you save money, especially on the larger size bags. No matter what size you need, you can order 3, 300 or 3000.

Order your bags today, and don’t forget to take advantage of a variety of ways to save on Oak Creek coupons.

Spring is in the air, at least in some parts of the world and that means time to go through the flat files and drawers where we might find newspaper clippings, photos and other important documents. Performing this ritual, I found an accumulation of documents needing protection before decaying into yellow dust. Luckily, the older documents, like this Los Angeles Times article about Educom ’87, have long been comfortably nestled in clear plastic bags designed especially for protection, preservation and display.

The first time I worked as a consultant to Apple Computer, Inc. was in 1987 when I was one of a 3-person team hired to design and produce a daily print newspaper for the Educom ’87 international conference for higher education. For this purpose, the company Desktop Design was born, and John Grzywacz-Gray, Roger Karraker and I named our team Piece o’ Cake Productions.

Our 5-day mission was to demonstrate Apple’s cutting edge technology to university educators from around the globe by producing a daily “On-the-Spot” newspaper covering the conference. Each morning we delivered a new edition to the conference floor. To our knowledge no one had ever done this before. We were making “desktop” history. For the next three years, our Piece o’ Cake team consulted and worked with Apple, Inc. to introduce new technology to educators. Apple, Inc. sponsored ad for Educom '87 .

Following the Dream on Throwback Thursday


Very few people understood what we Mac Fanatics were up to in 1987 (let alone 1985), but I was following my dream of designing and printing from the desktop. The following month I made the business official and called myself Desktop Design. Today is little Joey’s 36th birthday. He currently works for Disney Studios as a Global Analyst. Happy Birthday, Joey!

Greeting Cards Reign Supreme in 21st Century

by Nancy Haberman

"Sunrise" by Jennifer Simpson

If you are reading this post, you are living in a world driven by technology. Paradoxically, there has been a trend in art and graphic design towards “things handmade,” or anti-technology. Where once a graphic designer strove to make designs and typography more perfect and mechanical, new designers rebelled by distressing type and creating designs that appeared constructed and hand crafted. If you are a reader of any of the Stampington publications, particularly Stamper’s Sampler and Take Ten, you’ll find examples of some of the finest rubber stamped and hand crafted greeting cards that I’ve seen by crafters in the western hemisphere. Complex designs using mixed media have found a home in the greeting card, even if they do use basic elements created by others.

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Apply your artistic talent to home design with free software

Let’s face it. Some of us are more able to “see” or envision things than others, especially when it comes to 3D environments. Picture this. You are trying to rearrange your living room in your head and you know just where you want everything, but…you can’t get your idea across to your partner. Can you relate?

Whether you want to build a house, set up an apartment, help the kid furnish a dorm room, or plan the layout of the new baby’s room, you can do it with the help of the Autodesk Homestyler, an interactive drag and drop program to help you create 2-D and 3-D versions of your business, home, or room. You can do a variety of things from adding entire rooms, walls, doors, and windows to selecting furniture, appliances, plants, and outdoor landscaping.

Want something a little less complex? Give PlanningWiz a try. This designer has built-in rulers, grids, and basic line and color tools that make it so easy that kids can use it. In fact, besides using it to create home/room designs, you could even use it in conjunction with school lessons to teach perspective, shapes, proportion, measuring on a large scale, and loads of other skills. Check both of these design tools out and see what you think.

13 Things to know about Small Business and the Internet

by Guest Blogger Jeanne M. Brown

The Internet is a level playing field
Whether your company is big or small you have equal opportunity on the Internet.

Internet is not cumbersome or bureaucratic
Small businesses without many layers of management actually have an advantage over larger competition by nimbly reacting to changing market conditions via the Internet.

Internet is not expensive
Unlike traditional advertising that can require tens of thousands of dollars to make an impact, you merely invest in good website development and keep it current to make an impact on the Internet.

Prominence on the Internet is based on trust
How your website competes on the Internet (its page rank) is based on history (length of time on the WWW), how many visitors are attracted to your content and how many other “trusted or popular” sites yours is linked with.

The Internet is a democracy.
Visitors vote by clicking on your site. Other sites vote for you by

<to read more click here>

Jeanne M. Brown is a writer, publicist, marketing professional, fundraiser and blogger. She develops programs that boost sales and increase product awareness. Visit her at

Free software – limited time offers

Whether you use a computer for business or personal use, we think you will be interested in these limited-time offers for free software:  QuickBooks, Data Recovery Wizard, GIMP Graphic Software, and EASEUS Partition Master Pro. Check out these sites, then write about it on your blog – your readers will thank you!

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