bjorn-vandervoo-2014Hi, I'm Bjorn van der Voo, I'm a webmaster, digital champion, and marketing manager based in Portland, Oregon.

Formerly focused on magazine and trade publications, my work has evolved into web publishing strategies for a broad range of clients. My four main focuses are webmaster services, digital marketing, project management, and print publishing.

I help businesses with a range of services in the digital realm, from content creation to web system setups to marketing outreach. I can also help identify emerging revenue streams and foresee ways to keep processes flowing long after my work is done.

My plain-speaking manner enables me to work with a wide variety of clients and make complex projects look simple.


Super Duper Leaderboards

Interesting news that Google Adsense is embracing some of the IAB's rising stars. In particular this time, they're letting in the 970x90 Super Leaderboard. Makes sense, since the advantage of the desktop is going to be big graphics. Your phone will dish info & gossip, your tablet will let you comfortably immerse into things, and the desktop will be big graphics, and for a while at least, faster and deeper productivity.

Personally, I'm liking some of the new packages, especially in terms of page dominance. As a viewer, I would prefer to have webpages supplemented with a single, consistent, beautifully designed ad campaign. It makes the user experience more integrated, and less distracting than the blinking, jumping, and flashing of web ads past.

Closer to the face

UPDATE ON AUG. 25, 2013:
Since I originally wrote this blog post, the term "responsive design" has taken a firm hold across publishing channels, thankfully replacing the outdated phrase, "mobile development."



In my last post I wrote about how we need to ditch the web dev phrase "mobile development." That's because that phrase doesn't get to the true meaning of the term. It's not just about designing for mobile, it's about device detection.

Web dev needs to be built to detect what type of device is looking at it, and then feed out the best layout. That's because there will always be another phase, another transition in computing. Smartphones are just another phase, so there's no reason to tie a conceptual phrase to it.

Along those transitional lines, the next possible battlefield is enhanced optics, or glasses. Google Glass is already out for developers to play with. And apparently Microsoft has now filed a patent headed in the same direction. In that article at BI, the writer makes a good point that computers keep getting closer to the face:

"First they were in big rooms, then they sat on desktops, then they sat on our laps, and now they're in our palms. Next they'll be on our faces.... (Eventually they'll be in our brains.)"


By now the push to mobile design is in full swing. The open source CMS, Joomla!, has announced that their upcoming 3.0 version will be mobile-ready, meaning no need for average users to find mobile plug-ins. Sorry, Mobile Joomla. (However in fairness to Mobile Joomla, they're super smart and their product will most likely remain superior).

However I think it's time to change our terminology. We keep referring to this transition as Mobile, which is fine for now. But the term we should be using is Device Detection. The future isn't about mobile; it's about detecting what device someone is using and feeding them the best layout & presentation.

Why does this wording make a difference? Well, think of what's to come: people accessing websites via larger & larger screens (think flat-screen TVs), or perhaps electronic paper, or whatever the next phase will be. And we all know, there will always be a next phase. So why call our design job something that is, in the end, just a phase?

Ad Dillemma at the Corner of Hate & Love

Saber-rattling shook the ad world today as dozens of huge advertisers released an open letter to Microsoft and its plans for its upcoming IE10 browser. What does this have to do with things we love and hate?

Well, one thing consumers hate is the idea of getting tracked while web surfing. This is when web advertisers know, for example, that you look at new glasses on one corner of the Internet, and then lo and behold, perhaps some time later, you're shown advertising for new spiffy glasses on a different corner of the Internet.

And these are the corners of Love Street and Hate Street on the Internet. Web advertisers love this idea, as they well should. It gets the right ads fed at the right time and ushers in that fun, entertaining ad-filled future we've been longing for. Well, perhaps not all of us on that last part...

So here's more on that open letter to Microsoft. Turns out Microsoft wants to ship its upcoming IE10 browser with a "Do Not Track" feature turned on. And thus then did the saber-rattling begin...

Revenge of the Facebook Ad Monster

 In its search for its next revenue source, speculation is that Facebook is eyeballing the Google AdSense approach. Quickly coined "FaceSense" by perhaps its dubious source (i.e. perhaps a banker looking to pump up FB shares), the gist is that Facebook could expand into selling its ads on the third party website market, much as AdSense does.

facebook-chart2Right now Facebook only runs its ads on its own platform. But in this graph derived from a cleaned up whiteboard, it shows that they could benefit from launching their own exchange, funneling ads to other websites.

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