The Value of a Portfolio in Choosing a Proficient Application Developer

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Given the growing demand for IT specialists, finding a proficient developer is a real challenge, especially when your business is not directly related to IT, or you are not sure in skills and experience the ideal employee should have.

Whether you follow these crucial steps before hiring to find the outsource app developer or not, the candidate’s portfolio is something that you will never ignore. But is it that simple to choose a specialist who perfectly suits your business? Below are a few key points to consider in order not to lay an egg.

#1 The First Impression Does Matter

Try to catch your first impression of the portfolio. Put yourself in the potential client’s shoes. Do you like these works? Consider not only the design but also the quality of the layout, meta tags, and other details.

Ideally, you should find a ready-made website that matches the most important criteria of yours.

#2 Website Performance

Loading speed is one of the most important indicators of a high-quality website. A modern user will not wait long until the page opens – he or she will just turn to competitors’ web resources.

Statistics says that the pages with the loading speed over 4 seconds lose about 25% of their visitors, meaning every fourth user leaves before the page loads.

Check the speed with, for example, Google PageSpeed Insights. Just enter the URL of the on the PageSpeed ​​Insights page and check its speed (anything below 60 is poor). The report from PageSpeed Insights will also provide several recommendations for improving the download time.

However, even if the loading speed is low, don’t refuse the candidate immediately. After all, not every aspect is under the control of the developer, especially if the latter supports many projects simultaneously.


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#3 Functionality

Click on all buttons, fill out the forms or make a purchase. Even the smallest gap can prevent sales! You need a developer who can make an intuitive, easy-to-use website with rich features and capabilities, don’t you?

Pay attention to:
  • Easiness of navigation and search.
  • The convenience of sorting and filtering goods, as well as the process of ordering.

#4 Accessibility

A truly high-quality web resource should be available for all categories of users, regardless of the capabilities of their gadgets and computers. Therefore, test the websites for compliance with the general web accessibility guidelines. You can do it with, for example, WAVE Web Accessibility Evaluation Tool: just enter the URL of the page and get a report with possible problems with availability. Although not everything reported is actually a problem with availability, it is still a good tool for identifying potential errors.

#5 Code Quality

Code quality is a loose approximation of how long-term useful and long-term maintainable the code is. Although the clean and quality code is a fairly subjective thing, it can be defined as the code that is easy to read and modify. The most important parameter is adjust-ability.
  • Imagine, for example, that your freelance developer suddenly moves to a full-time office job, and  you need to hire someone to finish the project. If the code is clean and quality, the new developer won’t have any problems. 
Unfortunately, most of the page code can be hidden from you. Often this is the base code written in PHP, Ruby, etc. However, you can look at some things on the surface that can be indicators of how well your candidate is coding. For example, you can use the HTML Markup Validation Service by World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) to get a list of warnings and errors in the HTML of the website.

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#6 Personal Projects

The best web developers are always genuinely passionate about their work, and they usually have many personal projects in the portfolio. It can be sites or applications for friends, HTML5-games, personal blogs, etc. Evaluate these works like everything else in the portfolio, paying attention to the balance in them. A portfolio should not consist only of personal projects.

A web developer is a very important person for your project. After all, he is responsible for the face of your brand, its online image, as well as for your interaction with customers. 

Take your time in choosing the suitable person in order not to harm your business. I wish you best of luck in your endeavors!


Bio:
Lucy Adams is an aspiring businesswoman. Most of all, she’s interested in covering the most intriguing topics of yours, whether they are about business, writing or literature. Share your best ideas with the blogger and get a high-quality guest blog in a week or so!

The Burning Question: How Can I become an iPhone Developer?

The Burning Question: How Can I become an iPhone Developer?
If you are in anyways related to the programming or development filed and are planning to move to towards iPhone development, and then there are some other considerations also other than having grip over basic programming skills. As you know that the iPhone applications and software market is booming significantly, and new updates and additional plug-ins are launched almost every day. If you can quickly compare the iPhone application of today with that installed in iPhone 2 or 3, then you will surely find a significant difference in many respects.

It is because of the fact that not only the exterior and interior hardware of the device is changing, it’s processing and adaptability is also changing significantly and speedily. For this reason, programmers with obsolete knowledge of applications and games are no more welcomed in the field of developing, and they are required to upgrade their programming toolbox and knowledge. Some of the basic things, from the many, that you will require to get command over for becoming an iPhone app developer are as under:

Get a Mac Device
Mac Hoo

Mac is a type of operating system that all Apple devices use, including the iPhone. It is like a backbone of Apple, and therefore, you need to have command over this operating system, and not just the one you are using currently. Windows is a common operating system and it is able to perform almost any job using this operating platform, but iPhone development. All your programming and other development skills will be tested on the Mac operating system and you will have to be aligned to all upgrades in the Mac OS.

Command over SDK
Iphone SDK Hoo
Do you think that object oriented programming is enough to be an iPhone app developer? Think again then. There is a command toolkit for every device that carries a set of programming protocols. This can be considered as the special language for that particular device, which carried some codes and variables that apply to the particular device only. For this reason, other than your command over C language, Java or any other programming language, you will have to learn the software Development Kit (SDK). For testing and implementing the language protocols, you will need the Mac system, and this gain defines the importance of having a Mac device.

App Submission
Apple Store Picc
You app will not be registered until you sent a file of it to the Apple app store for submission. The company wants to ensure that your application does not have any offensive or inappropriate content or images that can dilute the repute of the company. There are a number of applications that have been released without permission of Apple, but such applications can be banned at any time, and the developer or the sponsoring company can also be charged for it. For this reason, it is important that you follow the parameters set by the brand you want to target and generate your revenue from.

Developing Online Courses That Encourages Student Participation

Developing Online Courses That Encourages Student ParticipationOnline courses provide learning institutions with a way to broaden their educational reach and teach more individuals. Nearly every type of learning can be taught in an online environment, giving instructors and course designers the freedom and flexibility to go beyond the limit of the classroom and teach in ways that would have been unimaginable before the commercialization of the internet. As the world of online courses continues to evolve and expand, not only in a K-12 and higher education setting but also in corporate training systems and other adult education environments, the challenge of ensuring participation by everyone is a constant concern.

Some of the bias against online courses is the inability of the instructor to physically engage learners in the same way as in the classroom. Some suggest that learners in an online environment simply turn their computer screen on are engaged in a monocratic process with no interaction with the learner. Whether that is actually true is an eye of the beholder opinion; however, the way in which an online course is designed has more to do with the level of interaction and participation an instructor will receive.

A Critique of Early Online Learning Environments
One of the problems with the earlier designs of online learning was the belief that the limits that are intrinsic to teaching learners in the classroom (i.e. size of the room, available supplies and equipment, time, etc.) do not exist outside of the classroom. The instructor's role, based on some technically designed course, was to provide their content in a static format, handout out a login and sit back and watch the learners learn. What took place unfortunately was with the lack of a human presence, such as a moderator or facilitator for the learning, learners were less apt to fully participate and as a result found the online experience dissatisfying. Much of the online learning that was created in the early days focused on the tools used in delivering the learning as oppose to a focus on the learner's needs. The missing element in this type of tool-centered learning was the social presence or process of socialization needed to sustain a learner's attention and motivation to participate in the course.

The Reason for Student Participation in Online Courses
Learning institutions are moving toward the development of learner centered courses that appeal to the different perceptions of learning (i.e. modalities of learning). The absence of an instructor's physical presence needs to be simulated in a way that gives online students the full sense of the classroom and classroom participation. Utilizing techniques that incorporate live discussion, multimedia webcasts, polling and other forms of interaction give students the opportunity to share their personal experiences with other learners. The institution of a pedagogical approach to online learning is important because of the demographics of the online learner. Undergraduates make up the vast majority of people who attempt at least one course online (82.4 percent). Those individuals who are of Generation X (born 1965-1980) are the majority of online distance learners (many using online courses as a way to learn new skills or finish previous degree requirements) with those in Generation Next (1981-2000) in line to become the largest population of online learning consumers. The age range for these two groups is 18 (those born in 1995) to 48, meaning that adult pedagogical learning models must be developed to produce greater student participation.

A Social Constructivist Approach to Encourage Student Participation
The word "constructivism" and social constructivism is being used more and more to describe the types of successful learning environments that yield effective student participation. A constructivist approach involves the construction of knowledge in a learning setting by including the importance of the learner's culture in relationship to the learning. Creating small groups and collaborations among online learners helps the learner discusses and debate learning in order to build on or reinforce existing knowledge. Changing the way online courses are developed to account for the needs of the learner will help make courses stronger, impactful and more able to deliver their desired outcome.

Sameer Bhatia is founder & CEO of ProProfs.com which is a leading provider of online training plateform  for building, Online testing, and applying knowledge. Sameer has a background in technology with a Masters in Computer Science from USC (University Of Southern California) and is an ed-tech industry veteran. You can find Sameer on Google+.