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What Is Cloud Storage? And Why Is It The Future?

By | Apps, Business, Technology | 3 Comments

cloud-banner

What is Cloud Storage?

Cloud Storage is becoming more and more popular but what is this ‘Cloud Storage’ exactly? Cloud Storage is a term for storing digital data on a remote server accessible via the web.  There are many uses to cloud storage for example backing up personal data, backing up software and general storage. The Term “Cloud Computing” was believed to have been coined first by Joseph Licklider in the 1960’s however, the use wasn’t commercialised until the mid 2000’s with Amazon launching there S3 service in 2006. I know what you may all be thinking, storing all my data in a random location is surely not as safe as storing it on the USB I carry around with me? Well Mega has pioneered in the Encryption world with an encryption method that uses an advanced AES algorithm. What does this do you ask? Well this gives users the ability to encrypt all their data and even Mega cannot access your files because they do not know the key you have encrypted the files with. Kim Dotcom the owner of Mega set a reward of up to €10,000 to the first person to hack into this system. So far there hasn’t been a single successful attempt.

So Why Is Cloud Storage The Future?

With 180 Million people using cloud storage, 65% of US companies shifting to the cloud storage since 2011 and even more converting across around the world every day, it’s hard not to think that the future will be stored on a remote server.

So Which Service Should I Choose?

There are hundreds of Cloud Storage sites online but which one should you choose? The big hitters in cloud storage world are Dropbox, Google Drive, One Drive, Box, iCloud and Mega. Each one of these provide a FREE storage space ranging from 2GB to 50GB.

Dropbox

Dropbox is the most recognised and most popular service in the storage world with a long term membership base and easy to use features.  It is it’s ever growing membership and easy to sync options,  It should be taken into consideration however, that they only provide free users with 2GB upon signup – the smallest free offer of the large companies.

Google Drive

Google Drive is another one of Google’s FREE additions to their Gmail accounts. Google Drive gives you a large 15GB FREE upon signup to Google. With many features the same as Dropbox and an amount 7 times more than Dropbox, Google is soon to become the bigger cloud storage company.

iCloud

iCloud is a prefect storage solution for anyone using an apple device, as iCloud allows you to backup all your devices to one central storage account. However, they only give you 5Gb for free. Therefore if you backup more than one device you will very quickly use up all your online space. However, if you are not using an apple device then you are much better off with another service such as Mega.

Mega

Mega is the bigger and better rebirth of Megaupload. The US government shut down Megaupload in 2012 on copyright infringement grounds due to thousands of users uploading pirated copies of popular Films, TV shows, Software, Music amongst other things. Since then Kim Dotcom the owner of Mega & Megaupload has made a extremely secure site with a massive 50GB FREE upon signup and an untouchable approach to copyright infringement.

My conclusion

The Mega website is the greatest of them all as far as protection and storage space, It provided you a very large storage with protection from even the company themselves. I strongly suggest you try out Mega, even if it is just to store a few files. If you have any Questions at all about Cloud Service please do get in contact! Either Tweet @CLyonsNDM or e-mail info@novadigitalmedia.com

February Round Up 2014

By | Apps, Business, Social Media, Technology, Web Design | No Comments

February Round Up

February although the shortest month has seen the most amount of projects fly through our door, it’s been hard to choose but here’s a few of our favourites:

1) Atelier SM

Website: http://atelier-sm.co.uk

This website is a firm favourite.

Atelier-SM Architects needed a website that would show off the impressive and beautiful work that they do every day.

We created a website that visually stimulates and emphasizes the scale and quality of Atelier’s projects. The entire has site a clean feel with easy to navigate pages that present information in a captivating manner.

Atelier Home Screen Shot

Atelier wanted something that instantly impressed the visitor and would encourage them to delve further discovering what makes their process different from other Architecture firms.

Atelier Projects Page

2) Good Food Village

Our newest project is our Social Media’s favourite topic: food. Not just any food, delicious mouth watering food. Good Food Village specializes in freshly cooked food created from locally resourced award-winning produce.

Their website is in the very first stages of development and being cared for by our web-design team. However, already completed in order to maintain our quick turn around claim, are their brand new business cards that we designed and then printed ready for pick up.

As always our aim is to create a product that represents the brand in a modern way.

gfv

3) Nova AR

All of us here at The Nova Agency are extremely excited by our huge steps in Augmented Reality Technology. Kept mainly hush hush this is the first month where we can talk about the work we are doing, or at least hint at some of the work we have been doing.

As a start up less than a year old Nova AR is moving faster than the technology it is developing.
Augmented Reality is the future. We are not just talking the future of marketing, it is the future for too many industries to mention and Nova AR is working up AR apps that can be applied to the majority of them.

Our most recent venture has brought us into BT’s orbit with our BT prototype set to make an appearance in their BT Inet showroom. Within the next few days they will be downloading the Nova App so they can highlight it’s full functionality, including the triggering of a video from a static image.

Our app will be getting serious exposure to senior executives of global corporations helping to emphasis BTs position at the forefront of leading technological thought. Our app would allow a brand new interface between consumers and BT that has never been seen before.

Here is BT’s James Porter being filmed for his Nova AR appearance:

BT Photo Shoot

 

 4) BEES

Website: http://beesmedia.co.uk/

B.E.E.S Media, a company who dedicated to providing innovative Digital Media Solutions utilising energy efficient technology, needed a website and they needed it fast. Having found an opportunity to put them in front of London Mayor Boris Johnson but having a short time span to work with they needed something that would show off the true potential of their services.

Luckily for them one of Nova’s talents is being able to create beautiful easy to navigate websites quickly.

The company came to us on Friday 21st and by Tuesday 25th we managed to get a landing page up for them. This Landing Page is now under development and provides and excellent starting point for the final website.

BEES Media Screen Shot

If any of the above intrigues you or you would just like a free chat give us a call, we’re a friendly bunch promise!

The Passion Of The Pizza

By | Apps, Social Media | No Comments

The passion of the pizza in the office has reached boiling point! After discussing a bad Marketing Campaign from my favourite Pizza joint, things started getting heated to the point where the words “prove it” and ‘show me then’ were thrown around, and at Nova we put our money where our mouth is! Fast forward ten minutes and 4 pizzas were making their way to Nova’s offices!

 

Papa John’s Marketing Plea!

Papa John’s still has a lot to answer for as far as I’m concerned as their £9.99 text deals are outrageously under advertised to staff and it’s caused 2 full blown arguments with myself and the Basildon Store as well as my Chief Web Developer and the Upminster Store.  Although my experience was slightly less problematic than Mike’s in the sense I wasn’t verbally abused by staff the manager of the store still argued with me about £0.50 as their minimum delivery charge is £10.50!

Tell me how I can take advantage of a £9.99 pizza if I have to order £10.50 to get the free delivery?!

So we decided to put both our favourite Pizza deliveries to the test!

 

Pizza Thunder Dome – 2 Pizzas ordered, 1 Pizza Wins!

The 2 stores that are unwittingly going head to head are:

Dominos Elm Park, Hornchurch, RM12 5AS (3.5 miles away)

VS

Papa John’s, Dagenham, Romford, RM9 5AG (3.0 miles away)

So Papa John’s have the edge geographically, but will they utilise that edge and get the pizza here any quicker?

 

The Order

It just so happens that both pizza chains offer a 2 for Tuesday Deal so that makes selecting what to order easier, then we decided to choose similar pizzas to reduce the variable factors.

What we want to order:

To keep things the same we decided to order the Pizza Companies suggested best pizza (according to their standard menu) and a Pepperoni with the best Stuffed Edge available.

From Papa John’s we’ve ordered the Papa’s Favourite and Double Pepperoni and added a stuffed edge to the Pepperoni.

From Dominos as there isn’t an equivalent of Papa’s Favourite we’ve ordered a Meat Feast and a Pepperoni Passion with the Hot Dog Stuffed Edge.

What we thought of the choices available to us:

Papa John’s have some great varieties of pizza available all seemingly well thought out and authentic seem to be lacking in the options for extras like stuffed edge and base options.

Dominos on the other hand have a large selection of stuffed edge possibilities and even more options for type of base, making the chances of creating a custom pizza a lot easier.

Dominos Wins!

 

The Technology

How the Apps weighed up:

I happened to have the Dominos App and true to Papa John’s, Helena had the Papa John’s App, both were ordered from iPhone 5 and using the same Wi-Fi signal so the least possible external interference possible.20130820_121937

The look and feel of the 2 apps were OK in different ways with Dominos taking the lead due to their design being slightly more polished and modern. The designs were very different the functionality of ordering the food was very similar.

The food was ordered easy enough with mistakes on both apps meaning we had to start again. The apps both look similar when selecting the pizza with Dominos taking the edge due to the pizza image being larger and the text slightly easier to read.

During the ordering process I used the menu to decide which pizzas I wanted and then went to the checkout and presented was presented with a cost of £38 for the pizzas at this stage, Helena on the other hand ordered from the deals menu after reaching the same problem and we both headed off to the cart.

Neither app added the 2 for Tuesdays Voucher Code nor did they intelligently suggest the discount which is bad kudos for both of them really, hopefully they aren’t assuming ignorance will gain them more profit in the short term!

“WE WANT TO BE ADVISED OF DISCOUNTS PIZZA PEOPLE!”

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This meant we had to reorder the pizza through the deals section. Which a second time round was quicker and although painless wasted precious minutes for both apps.

We were also hung up from VISA as my company card had not been used so the VISA verification page  came up and prevented Helena from going forward. I struggled as (take note VISA) the non mobile responsive version of their verification form came up and we couldn’t see the text once we had typed it into the fields, which caused Helena to error out and have to start again with another already established account and card, for Papa John’s. This took Helena a few minutes and now we are even.

What does this tell you? Both Apps are designed to not optimise on deals, both are simple to order with Dominos allowing more detail on the customisation and a more polished modern interface.

Dominos Wins!

 

The Wait

Dominos arrived a few minutes ago which is closer, as the crow flies but the fact that the dominos went through a few minutes earlier than the Papa John’s means it was only a few minutes earlier.

The guy also had to call and ask us where to go where as Papa John’s guy arrived, and headed straight towards the door. Although we prompted him out the window.

We think that it should go to Domino’s purely on the fact that what you want when you wait is not to have to wait and Domino’s simply got here first!

pizza (1)pizza (2)

Dominos Wins!

 

The Pizza

The pizzas were both hot, good start.

When laid side by side I couldn’t help but notice that the Dominos looked slightly over done, from the pictures I think you’ll agree, that said the proof is in the tasting so ignoring crust first we went and dug in. The outcome was that Papa John’s won, by 1 point.

We decided not to allow Dominos delicious Hot Dog stuffed crust sway our decisions as Papa John’s menu does not feature anything quite like it.  Papa John’s did however, surprise us with a an additional green chilli which I have never seen before (although I have been informed that they’re supposed to) and I am a big fan of chilli’s, however like the Hot Dog crust it would be unfair to compare.

We did a Pepperoni taste test on our office dominos fan boy and he couldn’t tell the difference so although a large debate went on and lots of score mongering was being thrown around to try and sway the scores, the proof in the tasting was Papa John’s win 21 to 20 out of a potential 25.

pizza (3)pizza (4)

Papa John’s Wins!

 

The Social Media

Come on we’re a digital agency! We of course want to judge there social media, we tweeted both parties to let them know what we were doing and not only did Dominos reply but they wished us a pleasant meal BEFORE the pizza arrived!

That’s how to do it. Responding to your clients quickly, accurately and positively. That’s why you have 100,000 followers Dominos (a tad more than Papa John’s 2,000+)

So hands down win to Dominos who beat Papa John’s on delivery twice today.

Dominos Wins!

 

The Conclusion

Well the taste test was inconclusive and problematic with the inconsistencies in Pizza Selections and too much debate in the office over what I consider nit picking differences in the quality and presentation. The fact is I ate 4 pieces of pizza for lunch instead of a boring sandwich!

Dominos Wins!