41 Must Read Books for Internet Marketers and Web Designers

This year at Astonish, the web team has a reading list.  Each member of my team is tasked with getting 1,000 points, which are rewarded for completing a book on the following list. I compiled this list from my own Amazon wish list, and books I’ve read recently.

If you’re a web designer or developer, and you want to get a better grip on marketing, these are the books for you.  If you are a team leader or manager and want to better understand leading a team involved in digital marketing, these are the books for you.

This list is a beautiful compilation of leadership, strategy, development, marketing and technology books. Have Fun!

How to Sleep like a Pro

It’s 4:30 am and I’m laying bed, thinking about my day. I’m not quite ready to get up but, I’m getting there. I know what you’re thinking; just bear with me.

A few years ago I was prepping for Gastric Bypass Surgery and had to go do a sleep study to see if I suffered from Sleep Apnea. What I learned about myself was well worth the torment of being strapped to medical machines and monitored as I slept.

"SEO is the organic growth of search driven traffic through site optimization, link sharing, and positive digital word of mouth" I've recently been working on a solid way to define Search Engine Optimization as it stands in 2013.

104 Pieces of Music to Help You Be Creative

I am often “dialed in”, as it was put in the movie, the Social Network. Headphones on, and disconnected from the outside world helps us concentrate. Your brain needs to be able to drown out, sound and distractions, when you need to focus on coming up with a creative solution.

I have been doing a lot of research on arrival of inspiration and creation. There is a lot that goes into it, and I am going to go into greater detail in an article I’m writing for

Having Trouble Understanding Your Teams Wants and Needs?

One thing hear often, is that leaders are challenged with understanding the career goals of their individual team members. Its not always easy for individuals to speak up, and express what they want in life and their career.

As a leader you want to make sure you’re challenging your team not only with the work they are doing, but also, challenge them to improve their skills and build their expertise.

Power Blogger Goals

I have an idea for a plugin. I’ve outlined a lot of the functionality, but I’m calling on a team of dev’s to help me build and launch the thing.

Calling on WordPress Developers

At the moment I don’t have the time needed to dedicate to a project like this. I’m looking for anyone interested in collaborating on this project, so we can release it to the community. Joint credit will be given, but the plugin will be GPL’d and free to download.

"But I know, somehow, that only when it is dark enough, can you see the stars." This is an amazing quote, that really spoke to me. Sometimes you need to fall, to see what you have in you to get back up. And if you can't do it on your own, you might just see who is there to help stand again.

I want to see your passion

I am currently looking to hire two people for my team at Astonish. I need a talented, motivated and creative designer, and I need a smart, forward thinking front end developer. I have a variety of ways to find and test individuals. However, the big question for me is, “are you passionate?”.

If I’m going to hire you to work on my team, I need to feel the passion oozing from your body. It has to be palpable, like extra pulp in your orange juice.

Non User Initiated Downloads

Non User Initiated Downloads is a term coined by me, Jesse Friedman. It refers to content of a relatively large file size, being unknowingly downloaded by someone on a device, that doesn’t necessarily support unlimited data downloading.

A simple example would be, someone on a mobile phone (who is not paying for or has access to unlimited data) pulling up your site and unknowingly downloading a large infographic. Many large infographics can be over 5 mb just for the graphic file. If your site content isn’t optimized for a mobile device, your user could be downloading all 5 mb of that infographic before they were given the choice.

Profanity is Fun

Our universally agreed upon social contracts have really sparked my interest lately. How early, is too early to call a friend? How many urinals do you need as a buffer in the mens room? When is it ok to curse? Its all quite interesting, if you pause and give it some thought.

Personally, I Love Cursing

There is something so satisfying about explatives. Great Fucking Job, Mark! See how much more powerful that was? There is of course a time and place for it.

“I really love cursing a lot, but as I get older, I realize it’s a little unseemly for women of a certain age. But once you pass 65, you can hit it full tilt again and it’s charming.” – Tina Fey

Starbucks at Barnes and Noble: A Missed Opportunity

Today, my good friend and colleague, Jeff Golenski, decided to have lunch with me at Barnes and Noble. We bought our teas from the Starbucks cafe in the bookstore and decided to “brown bag-it” for a healthier and cheaper lunch.

About 3 seconds into unpacking my sandwich, I was approached by a woman (I can only assume was the manager) telling me in somewhat of a rude manner:

“We are not a cafeteria or a library and we have a policy that outside food is not allowed in the cafe.”

Call jQuery NivoSlider Function if Slider Exists in WordPress

So here’s an interesting issue. Let’s say you want to have a Nivo Slider on the homepage of your theme. You obviously only want to call that nivoSlider.js if you’re on the homepage. Most of the time you’ll also put your $(window).load function inline with the HTML markup for the slider so you can also wrap it in a is_home conditional. This way your call to the nivoSlider.js and the HTML markup for the slider only show on the homepage.

How to Make a Great Cheeseburger

Everyone can grill up some meat and call it a burger. You might even know how to make a good burger. It’s “rare” to find someone who actually knows how to make a Great burger. Most restaurants fail at this task.

I’m not a chef or a grill master but if there is one thing I know how to cook it’s a Great burger. Follow the tutorial and make sure to catch the bolded notes. If you have anything to add please comment below.