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300 till 2000

Just over 300 days till the millennium. Thought I'd be among the first to tell you that. You can slap me now, or wait until I get all excited about "less than 200" days in, well, about 100 days. [Note: we had many readers write to tell us how wrong we were, because the millenium really starts on 2001. Whatever.]

We all know that we're not going to feel any different on January 1, 2000 (well, except maybe a little tired), but all this talk about time should remind you of the old cliche "time is money." Of course, time is really a lot more valuable than money. We never know how much time we have, so we want to make the best of it. Hopefully this FuseLetter and eFuse.com will help you do that.

So what's new this month, besides a few daffodils (in selected parts of the country, your mileage may vary).

 

IT'S ALWAYS ABOUT YOU, ISN'T IT?
(and more free stuff)

 Another month, another questionnaire. The reason I'm asking all this stuff is two fold (as opposed to "fluff and fold"). First, I really want to get to know you better so I know what you want and need to know about so I can give it to you! And, quite honestly, so I can attract more lovely people like yourself to this site, so I can continue to work at this job. Hey—that's how the world works. My world. Your world. Everyone's world except for maybe John Tesh who seems to have some kind of dream existence that goes beyond normal explanation.

Second, let's face it, marketing and demographics are important. I need to know about you, you need to know about your site visitors. So I'm just coming right out and asking—and giving you something for your answers—another free font! I can learn from you, and you can learn from me, and together we'll all figure this out, eventually.

A REVOLUTIONARY CHANGE OF FACE

OK, so we agree that most of the web is text. And yet, until very recently, it was complex and difficult to have your site visitors see the font you wanted them to see. Now it's EASY, with TrueDoc, by Bitstream (http://www.truedoc.com). You can use any font as body text, headlines, whatever, and anyone visiting your site with Netscape 4 or IE4 (or newer, of course) will see them, just as you do. What a great addition to NetObjects Fusion's already excellent "WYSIWYG" (what you see is what you get). Take a look at our sample pages, and you'll see how you can now easily, efficiently and safely use any font on your system and have your site visitors see it, too. Lots more control over how your site looks and feels. No more text-as-graphics. And eFuse readers get 25% off the price of the Bitstream WebFont Wizard and 200 fonts. Click now, or forever hold your peace.

LEADERSHIP LESSONS:

Sometimes, before you can make a better web site, you need to make a better "you."

So joining eFuse.com this month is Peter Vedro, noted "human systems architect" who brings together his insights drawn from the fields of education, psychology, theater and business to help you be a more effective "you." Peter helped develop and launch the "Seven Habits Organizer" and leads seminars on Principle-centered leadership and The Seven Habits. His first column, "Managing @Internet Speed—Watch Out for Speed Traps!" helps you distinguish between "speed/action" and "destination/results." It's one of those special pieces that the editors themselves learned from!

MORE BETTER WRITING, PART II:

You know that despite all the flashy graphics on the web, it's words that are at the heart of communication on the web. So you've got to choose your words wisely. It's not hard. It's not painful. In fact, Chris Meeks, professional Hollywood writer and teacher, makes it fun with his ten steps to better writing. This can really help you. So read it, already.

TARGET YOUR MESSAGE

In real estate the phrase is "location, location, location." On the web there's no such thing as location. It's all about "marketing, marketing, marketing." So how do you get more people to your site? Web marketing expert Daniel Janal explains how to target your message so you're reaching the right people. He talks about mailing lists, e-zines, finding the right publications, the ever-popular ROI (return on investment) and timing your efforts. Valuable info.

ENGAGE your INTRANET

What if you built an intranet and nobody came? Well, JD Shipengrover tells you how to prevent that from happening, and gives you tips on creating an intranet that people will actually like as well as use.

REALTORS, ACCOUNTANTS, BOOKKEEPERS, and OFFICE MANAGERS LOOK HERE

Yes, we understand how hard it can be to start from scratch—that blank screen staring back at you. Those strange messages you hear from the fillings in your teeth. But don't worry, we have solutions! Our first "vertical market template" was for Realtors (and it's still there, waiting to be downloaded by anyone using NetObjects Fusion). This month we have a solution for accountants, bookkeepers and other office-management types. The "banner" is a realistic pencil with your page title automatically etched on it by NetObjects Fusion. The buttons are folder tabs, and the background is ledger paper. It's better to see it than read about it, so take a look, then download the template and use it for your business. And if you want to see a template for your type of business, just email us.

YOU CAN DO IT

If you're still worried that the web is too hard, you have one less thing to worry about. We're here to tell you that you can do it. Really. You can. Honestly. No kidding. We mean it. This area is just starting, and will grow with more short, simple, graphic tutorials in the future. We'll also be adding animated audio/visual tutorials, too.

CONFESSIONS OF A NETOBJECTS FUSION CONVERT

"Boyfriends, jobs and pets come and go, but I don't know where I would be without my NetObjects Fusion. As God is my witness, I will never code by hand again!" So says Jennifer Stokes who works on the Westminster College site in Salt Lake City, and also builds sites for others on the side. OK, so she didn't win the "Miss I.T. pageant," even so, you'll still want to read her amusing story of how NetObjects Fusion changed her life.

NOF FAQ

Got questions about NetObjects Fusion 4.0? You've come to the right place, my friend! This freshly minted FAQ (which, in case you don't know, means "Frequently Asked Questions") is really helpful, because chances are someone else has already asked us a question you might have, right now. And if you're looking for printed documentation for NOF4, click here

We also have columns from Lynda Weinman on graphics, Roger Parker on design, Gary Priester on makeovers, Daniel Janal on marketing, Gary David Bouton on graphics, and JD Shipengrover on intranets.

 

A lot of people have asked me how they can save eFuse pages so they can read them later. Well, there are two answers to this. The first is simple: print the pages. If you want to save them electronically and you're using IE4 or Netscape 4 or newer, you can, of course, choose File/Save (which saves the text, but not the graphics).

If you want to save text and graphics, the simplest way is to email the pages to yourself!

In IE choose File/Send/Page by email

In Netscape, choose File/Send Page

In my experience, IE sends the page and all the graphics, but Netscape sometimes only sends the HTML file, not all the associated graphics. Even so, this can be handy for saving pages for future reference.

From the "What will they think of next?" department, here are three great, FREE web-based services that can help you work more efficiently:

 

eFax: receive faxes by email, for free

http://www.efax.com - FREE fax to email. They give you a free fax number. You have people fax to them, they turn it into email and email it to you. It's free. It's fast. It works. The software to read the faxes is small, and you just download it once. Then you can easily view or print your faxes. You can even print them four fax pages to a single printed page. Very efficient. No more stinky thermal paper. No more dedicated fax phone lines. Now you can receive and file your faxes electronically.

Hotsend--attachments made easier

http://www.hotsend.com - Also free. A lot of people find email attachments difficult and confusing—especially if you send a file in a format that someone else can't open because they don't have the program you used to create it. HotSend attaches to all your programs and adds a simple button. Press it, and it creates a self-contained program file, launches an email window and lets you send your fully-formatted document (fonts, graphics and all). When someone receives it, they just launch the attachment and the viewer is included. They can view and print the document. This can also be used for saving and sending web pages.

We look forward to seeing you!

Daniel Will-Harris

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The SchoomozeLetter is ©1998-2005, Daniel Will-Harris, all rights reserved. If you'd like to use any article on the web or in print, please ask for permission. If you're an agent or publisher looking to publish these pieces, just drop me a note.