moxie creative studio moxie creative studio bird moxie creative studio Twitter Facebook Flickr  
moxie creative studio

Bored? Nope, not me.

Posted on September 8, 2009

When I was a kid oh so many years ago, I would sometimes complain to my parents that I was bored. This would usually be followed by my mom giving me something to do, usually a chore like vacuuming or cleaning toilets ? EWWW! Needless to say, I didn?t say this very often.

Photo by Marinela.
Photo by Marinela.

As I got older, I learned how to fill unscheduled time. I realized that boredom is in the eyes of the beholder. Is it that I actually have NOTHING to do? (Ok, we all know that?s not possible when you own a home.) Or is it that I have a list of things to do, but none of them are APPEALING? (This is more likely the case.) So I?ve learned to have a secondary list, things-to-do-when-I-don?t-want-to-do-any-of-the-things-I-should-be-doing list.

Things on this list are usually things that don?t have to take a lot of time and can be squeezed in when I need a break. Reading is always a good filler, so I always have a good book I?m reading (often 2-3 books, I?m a person who likes options). And taking my dog for an extra walk is a good head-clearer for both of us. My latest uber-interest is cooking and finding new vegan recipes to try. This weekend I made tofu scramble (delicious!), peanut butter pancakes (turned out perfect and yummy!) and vegan ice cream ? all successes! (this, however, is not always the case with my cooking?)

These same principles apply for my work day. Most days I have enough work to keep me more than busy, but sometimes I just need a short mental break. Writing these blog entries has been a great one to fill a little time. I also like to look up new programming techniques that can be used in the future. And it never hurts to back up emails and organize projects to keep my computer in a reasonably understandable system.

So no, I almost never say I?m bored anymore. Most days, I wish there were more hours in the day to fill with all the things I want to try. If you are saying you?re bored, ask yourself this: Is it really that you NOTHING to do or more likely is it that you have nothing that you are INTERESTED in doing? If so? find something interesting! Now, if you don?t mind, I?d like to get back to my Garbanzo Tacos (yes, another NEW things I tried).


? Post written by Cristy Wiza.

(0) Comments   |   Filed Under: Blog, Habits, Office, Programming    Tags: ,

SEO = S… E… What the #$%*???

Posted on July 2, 2009

SEO is a term that has been bouncing around the web for a while. It means ?Search Engine Optimization? and boils down to creating a website that people can find. That?s the point of most websites, isn?t it? To get visitors there to check out whatever it is that you have to say or sell.

Simple, right?

The concept is simple, to make your site as user-attractive as possible. Well-written copy, clean layout, easy navigation?all the basics for a user-friendly site. Thing is, first you have to actually get people TO YOUR SITE. And unless they already have the link (probably sent?by you? to everyone in your address book), chances are the visitor will find your site using a search in Google (or Yahoo, Dogpile,, Bing, etc). These searches might bring up your site, but chances are it will also bring up a bazillion other links as well. Why not tilt the odds in your favor that your site will be at the top of this list by using words that people will actually be searching for?

SEO Tip #1 ? Use Searchable Words

This is an easy fix for any site. Use the words that best describe your site in the COPY on your site. Do you have recipes for vegan dog treats? Do you sell organic seeds? Do you have an affinity for collecting Pez? Use these words within your site, especially on the index page (you know, the homepage), as often as reasonably possible. Search engines will reference these words when someone enters a search for vegan dog treats or Pez collection. The closer your site matches the search, the more likely your link will show up.

Keep it simple. Try to avoid using obscure wording and complicated terminology. It is important to use the terms that visitors will actually be using, and to use these terms at least a few times within the copy. Use ?vegan dog treats? instead of ?scrumptious morsels of canine indulgence entirely void of creature products.? It seems obvious, but sometimes we just want to make our products sound unique, we forget people may not understand and probably aren?t using these words to search. Keep the bulk of the copy simple, and add those extravagances to a few of the details.

NOTE: Using searchable words more than once in your site is vital, but is important to keep the copy valid. Having a paragraph of a single word repeating or words that do not apply to your site is known as spamindexing, a form of Black Hat SEO. These kinds of tactics can have your site blocked from search engines, which means it won?t show up on anyone?s search.

The key is to know what people are searching for to get them to your site. After all, you are selling a product you want people to know about. You can also use Google Analytics to find out what people are searching for that are bringing them to your site. (More on that later.) Just remember, at Moxie, we are here to serve our clients, to help YOU SUCCEED!


? Post written by Cristy Wiza.

(1) Comment   |   Filed Under: Programming, Web    Tags:

The Joy of Programming: A Love Note

Posted on June 29, 2009

Did you ever truly love something and had no idea why? This ?thing? you love doesn?t match your personality or your normal genre of interests. It might even be something you?re embarrassed of (for instance, I love the movie Princess Diaries ? I am NOT ashamed!). I didn?t say ?like?, as in ?I like tofu? or ?I like brownies? or ?I like to watch Ashley dance? (and I do like all of these things, a lot). I?m talking about L-O-V-E. Well, that is what web programming is for me, an odd love in a dirty-laundry-list of odd loves that make me so, um, (fill in the blank). Make sense? Let me explain.

Graphic designers are visual people, some entering this field to make money as an artist (or maybe that?s just me). It is mostly visual beauty in the form of colors and fonts and textures, and tactile beauty with papers and coatings. Programming code doesn?t appear to fit the typical artist mind. (I get to this conclusion from talking with my fellow designers about code?you?ve never seen a person?s eyes glaze over so quickly!) Now, before anyone get?s all unhinged saying that programmers can also be amazing creative artists (which they can), let me be clear: I love the code. Yes, all those lines of numbers and letters and symbols often morph into a beautiful collage of working art. (This beauty does not extend to entire files of code that are one solid chunk of run-on sentence without bathroom breaks.)

Programming, for me, was a secondary thought after I was already working as a designer. I fell into it several years ago, wanting a job that required the ability to program (which I may have stretched the truth a bit about my skills to get), and I am forever grateful for this turn of events. Since then, I?ve taken classes for programming, but truly learn the most from just doing it. Finding websites I think are interesting, and looking at the code or finding tutorials and trudging through them. But it?s my love for the code that keeps me coming back time and again.

It makes me weak in the knees to know I get to program a website, using tags and CSS and maybe a function or two. I love taking the static files of the site layout and bringing them to life. I love figuring out how to get all of the details to work, details requested by people who don?t have the first clue on whether it?s easy to code or not. I love getting websites to work in all the different browsers. (Ok, maybe that last one is just something I tolerate for my art.) The point is, I love it. Love love love it. And when you love something, you are always striving to learn more and be great.

If you want to find a good web programmer, find one who LOVES to program. People who love what they do, weather it be a baker or mechanic or designer, will want to create something great doing what they love. Just look for the L-O-V-E. You are almost guaranteed to get your money?s worth?or more!

At Moxie, we are here to serve our clients, to help YOU SUCCEED!


? Post written by Cristy Wiza.

(1) Comment   |   Filed Under: Creative, Inspiration, Programming, Web    Tags: , ,

Desktop Version | Switch To Mobile Version