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Steve’s Blog

Moving Mountains (and Countries)

As I was reading Amy’s blog this morning, I took a second to check out the new Yahoo! home page that she was talking about. First of all, I COMPLETELY agree with Amy. Most of the “Interactive” portions of the page are incredible annoying. Move your mouse just a little bit in any direction, and an enormous pop-up frame fills the screen. If you wanted to read that portion, then that’s great. But if you accidentally passed over it with your cursor (like I did), you’re thrown for a loop and unable to navigate the rest of the page, which is now covered by the annoying hover box. It’s proof that if you give someone enough bells and whistles to play with, they can DEFINITELY overdo it.

But the point of my story wasn’t to rip Yahoo!. While on the site, I saw a headline for an article that drew my attention: “Massive Quake Moves New Zealand Closer to Australia”.  Having visited New Zealand way back in high school (it was beautiful), and with a sister who lived there for 6 months, I took notice.

Apparently, an enormous earthquake struck last week off the coast of New Zealand, with a 7.8 magnitude on the Richter Scale. Fortunatley, there were no reported injuries or serious damage, since it was way out to sea. But there was one long-lasting effect that has me amazed: The entire country of New Zealand moved about 12 inches to the west, and is now closer to Australia than it was before. Now, of course, one foot isn’t much in the grand scheme of things, especially when the gap between the countries is about 1,400 miles. But the fact that one Earth event could move a large country is amazing to me.

Here at DDA, we move mountains every day! (How’d you like that transition?). Whether it’s a new interactive website (hopefully without annoying hover boxes and pop-ups), virtual trade shows, custom online applications, printed brochures, traditional trade show displays, intranets, or search engine marketing (SEM), DDA knows what it takes to get the job done. With such a wide variety of experts under one roof, DDA can take care of even your most complex marketing and advertising needs. Because our graphic designers, copywriters, and animators work alongside programmers, search engine marketing specialists, and video experts, your project never leaves the building. That guarantees that everything will be done efficiently and effectively, and each portion of your project will be tied together to create the perfect finished product.

OK, so we may not actually move mountains here at DDA. But we always do right by our clients, as you can see by viewing our seemingly endless collection of unsolicited testimonials. So the next time you want to make a statement with your marketing or advertising efforts, contact DDA!

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Entry by: Steve

The Long and The Short of It

The 40th anniversary of the first man to walk on the moon is a big deal in my book (and other space nerds like me), so it deserves two blog posts. Well, it’s not exactly about the moon landing, but the story of everything that came before it:

Last night, Turner Classic Movies aired a movie called The Right Stuff, which I have seen many, many times. It chronicles the story of the “Mercury 7″ astronauts. These were the first Americans chosen to be part of the space program, and their names became legendary as man continued to explore space. Among them were former test pilots and other well-decorated military personel, such as Alan Shepherd (the first American in space) and John Glenn (the first American to orbit the Earth, and later a U.S. Senator).

Anyway, the movie chronicles everything from the pilot who first broke the sound barrier (Chuck Yeager, who was not among the Mercury 7), through the Mercury missions, which paved the way for the Gemini and Apollo programs to come later. It’s based on a true story, and definitely sticks to the facts most of the time (much more than most “true” stories). But of course, it takes a little bit of poetic Hollywood license for some of the minor details, especially when it comes to the interactions and anecdotes between the astronauts.

I love the movie, mostly because I’m a nerd about this stuff, but it is a little bit long (especially when you have to get up for work the next day). At more than three hours, there are plenty of parts that could be taken out, or at least shortened. Now, obviously, this is an epic story that needs plenty of detail, and the movie earned plenty of positive reviews and acclaim. But there are a few parts that I can pinpoint that could be drastically shortened or cut altogether.

Here at DDA, that’s never a problem with our high definition video production services. When our video experts embark on a new project, they map everything out with the client down to the smallest stage direction. And if it’s more of an on-site production — meaning we shoot first and edit later — the video crew makes doubly sure to gather more than enough footage, then edits it down to fit each client’s specific needs. This was actually the case with a video that I helped shoot a few months back for a New York City emergency room. We actually proposed a video of roughly two minutes, but ended up with one that times out at nearly three minutes. That’s because we received plenty of help from the client, and filmed a ton of great material during our trip to the Big Apple.  Our video experts (and microphone holders like me) are ready and willing to adjust on the fly.

Here at DDA, we not only offer video services and an on-site video studio, but we offer unmatched quality and high definition production and editing. So contact DDA today and blast your business into space!

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Entry by: Steve

One Small Step for Man, and One Erased Tape

As anyone who knows me has come to realize, I am a huge sports fan. But what you might not know is that I am also a huge nerd when it comes to outer space. Whenever I was given a choice in school about a topic for a class project, I would always pick something related to astronomy or space exploration. And anytime the Discovery Channel rolls out a new show about outer space, planets, stars, or anything of the sort, I am firmly planted on my couch.

So it is my job to remind you that today marks the 40th anniversary of the first human to step on the moon. On July 20, 1969, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin stepped out of their Apollo 11 lander and explored the Sea of Tranquility. Ten more Americans walked on the moon in the months and years to follow, but none have been back since. In fact, no human has set foot on any other object in the universe (aside from a space station) since Apollo 17 in 1972.

“That’s one small step for man. One giant leap, for mankind.”

Now, since Laurence blogged about DDA’s capabilities in terms of interactive websites and the Flash animation, webcasting, and bells and whistles that are featured on sites like www.wechoosethemoon.com (awesome, by the way), I’ll relate to another fascinating aspect of the moon landing that I actually DIDN’T know until today.

As I’m sure you can understand, the grainy black and white video from the moon’s surface is among the most famous recorded moments in human history. So it might surprise you to learn this:

NASA accidentally erased the original recordings!

You would think they might have put the tapes into a vault. But apparently, they went into the pile with other tapes, and were erased and taped over sometime in the years that followed. Fortunately, some Hollywood magicians have teamed with NASA to restore the remaining recordings, without the help of the originals. So that moment will be there for our children and children’s children to see for centuries to come.

Here at DDA, we make mistakes too (although not when it comes to erasing — that’s what DDA Archive Day and our backup hard drives are for). It’s shocking, I know, but we do make mistakes — everyone does. We also make sure to learn from them, and every single one makes us better. Did a new search engine optimization technique fail to produce results? Well let’s try something new! Is a new piece of animation or video software not really doing what we need it to do? Then we’ll shift gears and try again!

Here at DDA, we don’t pretend to know everything there is to know — and you should fear any marketing or advertising agency that claims they do! But if you’re looking to shoot for the moon with your advertising and marketing materials, then DDA is the perfect choice. Whether it’s a new interactive website, interactive game, virtual trade show, medical brochure, or any other service, you can count on DDA! Contact us today, and mark this important anniversary of our history with a new marketing and advertising campaign from DDA!

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Entry by: Steve

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