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The most gender-equal tech company still hires mostly men

Yahoo Tech News - 1 hour 10 min ago

Copying the lead of other big tech companies such as Twitter, Facebook, and Google, eBay has detailed its workplace diversity for the first time. The figures released show a company that hires more women, Hispanics, and black people than its industry peers, but one that is still dominated by white and Asian men. 42 percent of eBay's 33,000 employees are women. By comparison, only 37 percent of Yahoo's and 30 percent of Google's workforces are female.

5 essential elements of a successful 404 error page

Webdesigner Depot - 1 hour 33 min ago

404 pages are one of the most overlooked aspects of any website design, and when they’re not overlooked, the tendency is to create something fun—in the hope that a bit of humour will lessen the user’s irritation at the missing information.

Many designers opt for the default 404 believing that the rest of their scheme is so full-proof as to not require a back up plan. Others crack a joke, or use the page as a little web experiment.

There’s nothing wrong with being humorous if that’s what the page requires, but fun and functionality are not mutually exclusive, and a good designer will always ensure that their user find the way to the information they were looking for.


1) Craft your error message

The most important part of a 404 page is the error message. An error message with an apology and some helpful suggestions should be front and center. Try to offer an explanation of what went wrong, for example: “The link you clicked may have been wrong” or “The post your looking for may have been deleted”. The language that we use is very important, so we certainly want to choose it with care.

Users can be sensitive creatures, especially when things are already not going the way they expected. Often times, the blame for this inconvenience immediately falls on our shoulders, even if we had nothing to do with placing the link that brought them to our site. So our relationship with the user is starting off a bit strained. This is what makes our language important. We want to win them back, not further the stress. So we need to avoid placing any blame on them with the phrasing we choose.


2) Always include a search box

We know the user wants to find something on your site, we know they haven’t found it. Be grateful that they’re prepared to give you a second chance and make sure you have a well functioning search box.

Even if we have nothing else (which as you will get from this post, is not all that recommended), a search box is a must. Since the visitor didn’t find what they were looking for, we need to set them on the right course. Repair this breach by giving them a convenient and handy way to search for that missing link (pardon the pun). This gives them a compass to offer them their bearings

This small curtesy works wonders in winning back the trust of the user.

The only exception to this rule is if you’re site is so small (ie. a single page site) that a search will only ever produce a handful of results, in which case skip to the next tip.


3) Provide a category list

If the user has a specific topic that they came to your site looking for, having a list of your various categories can be extremely useful. This way if what they were looking for is now gone, they can hopefully find something else on the site that is in the same vein, and they’ll be encouraged to stick around a bit longer. And if they are curious, this gives them a little more insight into the other subjects that you cover or deal with throughout your content.

Once again, this is a place where we need to be sure and not to overdo it and overwhelm the user. Sometimes, less is more, and that principle holds true in the case of your category list. If your category list is somewhat extended, perhaps just sticking to the most popular would be appropriate.


4) Upsell your featured posts

If you’re working on a blog, magazine, or any other site that has posts then this is a fantastic opportunity to direct the user to the content you’re already promoting. Those posts that we tend to want to feature widely, can find a good fit among the added functional elements of our newly expanded 404 page.

From our most popular posts, to the most recent content that we have up for the public, or even just the posts we personally feel shine brighter than the rest of them; whatever the case may be, these are the posts that we want to put in front of any user landing on our 404. It is something of a longshot that we keep a user once we have effectively “lost” them (or gotten them lost with the misplacement of blame falling on our shoulders), but if we’re going to go down, we might as well go down swinging.


5) Don’t forget key links

The last added element we are going to cover in this post is the inclusion of some key links to various important pages on our site. Naturally, which links matter most and deserve this 404 placement really depend on the site, brand, mission, and more. But offering links to the key pages of our site can go a long way to enticing a lost user on our site to stay long enough to find who we are and what it is we do.

With that in mind, adding a link to our home page, about page, our archives and/or our contact page wouldn’t be a bad idea. This is not to say that our navigation need appear on the 404 page in full matching fashion as it does on every other page, but a scaled down set of key links would serve nicely instead.

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How the AP-GfK poll was conducted

Yahoo Tech News - 1 hour 49 min ago
The Associated Press-GfK poll on foreign policy and President Barack Obama's approval ratings was conducted by GfK Public Affairs and Corporate Communications July 24-28. It is based on online interviews of 1,044 adults who are members of GfK's nationally representative KnowledgePanel.

CIA director reverses himself on Senate spying

Yahoo Tech News - 2 hours 10 min ago

WASHINGTON (AP) — For months, CIA Director John Brennan stood firm in his insistence that the CIA had little to be ashamed of after searching the computers of the Senate Intelligence Committee. His defiant posture quickly collapsed after a devastating report by his own inspector general sided against the CIA on each key point of the dispute with the Senate.

Start-up behind 'dunkable' phone technology explores Asian IPO

Yahoo Tech News - Fri, 08/01/2014 - 05:46

By Anshuman Daga SINGAPORE (Reuters) - P2i, a technology spin-off from Britain's Ministry of Defence, is looking to raise as much as 10 million pounds ($17 million) from Singapore investors as it readies the launch of its "Dunkable" or waterproof technology for smartphones and tablets. The fundraising by the nanotechnology company follows an expanding list of overseas firms tapping Singapore's pool of high net worth individuals. P2i's technology applies a thin, transparent, splash-resistant polymer coat to products ranging from clothing to mobile phones. The company is in the process of introducing a new version of the technology, which it calls "Dunkable", that will allow devices to survive being immersed in water.

Canada's telcos burst into banking, healthcare in hunt for growth

Yahoo Tech News - Fri, 08/01/2014 - 05:06

By Alastair Sharp and Euan Rocha TORONTO August 1 (Reuters) - Canada's three biggest telecom firms, keen to keep shareholders happy with fat dividends, are breaking into businesses ranging from banking to healthcare to drive growth as they run out of expansion options and shy away from overseas purchases. BCE Inc , Rogers Communications Inc and Telus Corp dominate their industry in Canada but with landline connections on the wane, cable TV losing out to online portals and wireless growth slowing, Canada's telecom giants are pushing into uncharted businesses. Some of the moves - such as Rogers' C$5.2 billion-deal ($4.8 billion) for exclusive National Hockey League broadcast rights - may bring a rapid pay-off. Others, like Telus' bid to dominate healthcare services, are gambles that may not pay off for many years.

DealBook: Upstart French Telecom Iliad Bids $15 Billion for a Majority Stake in T-Mobile US

Newyork Times Technology - Fri, 08/01/2014 - 03:57
The move by Iliad, the fourth largest cellphone operator in France, would be a huge test of its financial capabilities and comes as T-Mobile and Sprint have been in merger talks.

MLB trashes ISPs, doesn’t like the FCC’s ‘fast-lane’ plan one bit

Yahoo Tech News - Fri, 08/01/2014 - 02:30

The net neutrality debate is far from over, especially since the FCC is still sorting through more than one million comments on the matter. Quartz reports that one of those comments comes directly from Major League Baseball, which argues against allowing for Internet “fast lanes” despite the fact that its own MLB Advanced Media (BAM) platform could benefit from such a scheme as long as MLB agreed to pay the proper fees to ISPs. MLB wasted no time pointing out the problems with the FCC’s proposal and argued that, ultimately, the regular consumer would pay the price, and that fast lanes would also affect competition. “Fast lanes would serve only one purpose: for Broadband ISPs to receive an economic windfall. American consumers would be worse off as the

How Disney World is keeping tabs on visitors with rubbery wristbands

Yahoo Tech News - Fri, 08/01/2014 - 01:16

Beginning last year, Disney World started issuing "MagicBands," rubberized RFID wristbands that can do everything from unlock your hotel room to act as a fast pass to get you slotted to skip the long lines on rides. It also tracks your every move and lets you buy things. With tens of thousands of visitors to the park every day, Disney is amassing a wealth of personal information on its customers. ...

Here are all the free games PS4, PS3 and PS Vita owners can download in August

Yahoo Tech News - Fri, 08/01/2014 - 01:15

Not to be outdone by Microsoft’s increasingly attractive Games with Gold program, Sony has announced the August lineup of the Instant Game Collection for PlayStation Plus subscribers on the PlayStation Blog. This month, PS4 owners will be treated to the brand new downloadable title Road Not Taken for free on the day it releases. Road Not Taken is a roguelike puzzle game from Spry Fox, the creator of Triple Town, and will be available on the PlayStation Store on August 5th. Fez will also go free on the PS4 for the month of August, a game that I loved to no end when it originally released in 2012. Fez is a cross-buy game as well, so if you’d rather play on your

Alibaba Is Investing Huge Sums in an Array of U.S. Tech Companies

Newyork Times Technology - Fri, 08/01/2014 - 01:13
The Chinese retail giant has made a half-dozen major investments in American start-ups over the last year, focusing on mobile and e-commerce.

Emergency Efforts in Africa to Contain Ebola as Toll Rises

Newyork Times Science - Fri, 08/01/2014 - 00:50
New measures to combat the disease included house-to-house searches, advisories against travel and the deployment of the army and the police.

Bits Blog: Judge Rules That Microsoft Must Turn Over Data Stored in Ireland

Newyork Times Technology - Fri, 08/01/2014 - 00:47
Other big technology companies are watching the case, which Microsoft said it would appeal, as a potential threat to their plans to offer cloud computing overseas.

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