Oranges and Lime Blog

How do I make my own website step by step?

By | Articles | No Comments

Just broadly, if you are to create a website, these are the steps:

Step 1

Answer these questions

1. Know what type of website is it? How does it make money?
2. What features does it need?
3. What will the user experience and information flow be like?
4. Who is your target market / audience?
5. How are you different to your competitors? What are you offering your audience?

Step 2

Design your website based on your branding and identity like your logo, corporate colours, fonts, etc

Step 3

Develop your website

(A) Code your design using HTML, CSS, Javascript, PHP/ASP/Ruby/ Python/.Net/Java
(B) Fill your website with content
(C) Optimise it for SEO
(D) Test it for functionality
(E) Upload it to the Server, if you developed it locally.
(F) Test it for browsers and devices. Make any adjustments
(G) Soft launch. Get a small circle of people to play around with your website and repeat steps B, C, D and F until you are happy.
(H) Launch it. Open it to the public.
(I) Be ready to do B, C, D and F over and over again because based on your customer’s experience you need to keep making adjustments.

It can be quite involved. If it is for business, you can get bogged down learning to do all this. It can take a while to get your website looking professional enough to meet your customers expectations based on their experience with your competitor’s website.

(We were originally asked this question in Quora.)

Should I create a blog using HTML?

By | Web Design & Development | No Comments

You can create a blog purely with HTML (and CSS) using a program like Adobe Dreamweaver. However, having assisted individuals and businesses set up their blogs, we would highly advise against starting a blog using HTML. You will spend your time putting it together, only to realize very quickly, that it is not a good solution and you need to rebuild it differently. With a HTML blog, as you grow, your work rises exponentially!

For one thing, how can people interact with you? How are they going to comment on your posts? Will you ask them to email you their comment, so you can then update the blog manually? That’s a lot of work, my friend.

You really need a dynamic website or CMS that allows you to log-in, add new blog posts and edit existing ones. A dynamic or CMS website automatically sorts blog posts according to categories, topics or dates, without you having to re-update all the other pages manually.  They also come bundled with many features, including commenting systems.  The more blog posts you write, the more time a dynamic website saves you in the long run.

(This post is based on a question posed to us in Quora: How do I create a Blog using HTML?, 23 August 2015 )

How to encrypt the data on your Phone

By | Articles | No Comments

In my previous blog post titled, “Why protect your personal and business data on your phone“, I wrote about how your phone in its default state, is a gateway with which your personal and business information can be accessed. It is through the vulnerabilities of a signalling system called SS7 that is being exploited to listen into conversations, steal your information and track your location. For a time, this seemingly high-tech affair used to be the domain of spies and governments, but now the technology is accessible to common criminals. It is easy to see the incentive to gain this capability for any thief who wants to steal money, any predator looking for his next victim or organised criminals looking to harvest information to sell to the black market.

The solution really, is encryption. If our devices encrypted the data that is coming in and going out of them, whatever bits of data that get intercepted will not be readable by anyone else apart from their intended recipient. The issue with this however, is that the Government does not really want to go that path because it closes their access to their citizens’ information too.

We know from the Edward Snowden documents that the US and the UK Governments had been spying on their citizens. This security problem therefore is a dilemma for Governments. Because of this, I nor you, should hold your breath for the Government to seriously do anything about this issue anytime soon. Last time I read about the issue, the US Government tried to discourage big companies like Google and Apple not to proceed with developing encryption technologies for their products, or at least do so in a way that still gives them a privileged access.

Fortunately for us, Google and Apple seem to recognise the company who can give the security and privacy their consumers demand, will have a competitive advantage over others who do not offer encryption. I am therefore happy to see that indeed, they have data encryption on their phones.

I am not sure if I understand this correctly but from my readings so far however, Apple seems to have a limited encryption compared to what Google offers in its Android Operating System. If somebody takes issue with this, they can make their point, link me to the right research paper and I can post their reasoning here. However, at this moment, I am pleased to know that Google already has full data encryption in its latest release of Android (the Lollipop / Android 5.0 ones and over).

I researched on how to minimise this risk for me. In this post, I will tell how you how I went about encrypting the data on my phone to help you secure data on your mobile phone also.

I should say that I have the Samsung Galaxy Note 4 which runs on Google’s Android 5.0 Operating System. So as long as you have an Android phone, the instructions here will be similar to your phone. I will update this article to discuss security on Apple’s iPhones too.

 

THE NEGATIVES OF ENCRYPTING DATA ON YOUR PHONE

We need to understand and acknowledge the negatives of encrypting data on your phone. Encryption requires some of your phone’s resources and that is usually dependent on your phone’s hardware. Google initially, wanted to encrypt all data on their phones by default but with testing, they found encrypting all data on Nexus phones reduced the phones’ performance somewhat. Knowing my phone hardware specs, this was not going to be an issue.

The encryption works by encrypting the data on your phone with your passcode. I read somewhere that for you to achieve sufficient security, you do need a 16-character passcode. Anything less, was considered relatively easy crack. So I had to make up a 16-character passcode.

The next issue was the thought of me having to type in that code every time I just want to check my email, check my bank balance or send messages. Fortunately, Android has a fingerprint mechanism. So instead of having to type in the 16-character passcode all the time, I can just wipe my fingerprint to open my phone.

The final issue is that once you have encrypted your phone, you cannot undo it. The only way back is to restore your phone back to its Factory Setting!

 

STEPS TO ENCRYPT DATA ON YOUR PHONE

The first thing I did is to back up my data on the phone using Samsung Kies, a free Samsung app. Once that is done, I would recommend you re-starting your phone just in case there’s any memory allocation or other technical problems.

Ensure you have at least 80% left on your battery charge and plug in your phone to the power outlet. I would charge it all the way to 100% to make sure. The reason for this is because if the encryption process is interrupted, you lose some or all of your data! It may take up to an hour or more. Therefore, make sure you have battery power in case your electricity supply drops out and you are completely reliant on the battery.

Pull down the top menu. Click on the Settings (Gears) Icon.

How to Encrypt Data on your phone

Look for the Security Options:

How to encrypt data on your phone image 2

Click on Encrypt Device.

How to encrypt data on your phone image 3

Read the warnings to ensure you understand the consequences to encrypt your phone data.

Press the button that says something to the effect of “Encrypt Your Data” and leave your phone alone to do its work.

When it’s done, you are now ready to use your phone. On the Galaxy Note 4, which used up 75% of a 30GB disk space, it took about 10 minutes to encrypt. It was a lot shorter than what I was prepared for.

So that is how you encrypt your data on an Android Phone running on Android 5.0 (Lollipop) onwards!

 

LINKS ON HOW TO ENCRYPT DATA ON IPHONES

As for iPhones, I will wait until I have some personal experience with it and post my findings. In the meantime, here are a couple of references that might lead you to similar guidelines I provided here for Android.

If you think this post will help any people you know, post it on your blogs, tweet it or like it on Facebook or Google Plus.

If you have other references for encrypting data on other phones or operating systems, send us the link to your article or send us your article and we will publish it here.

Which web design software should I use for creating quality webpages quickly?

By | Articles | No Comments

Question: Which web design software should I use for creating quality webpages quickly?

Since you asked which Web Design SOFTWARE, then I would say Dreamweaver. But I wouldn’t rely on Dreamweaver completely unless you’re dealing with a brochure website. If you asked, which Script or maybe, which Content Management System, I would say WordPress.

You might hear some people say, “WordPress is just a Blogging tool”. Not really. That’s old news. It started as such but it is now commonly used for websites. There’s more tools but since you said, ‘quickly’, the options I give is narrowed down.

Source: Marquez Comelab answered this question on Quora in August 2015. 

I have my product almost ready, but I have no company, no co-founder, no contacts. How do I proceed from here?

By | Articles | No Comments

Question: I have my product almost ready, but I have no company, no co-founder, no contacts. How do I proceed from here? 

Do you need to register as a company? Can you NOT register as a Sole Trader? That’s probably the simplest to start with. I would only start using a company when it is worth more than its trouble.

Once you have that, I would, if I were in your shoes, see if I can legally protect any intellectual property I can have on the product (trademarks, patent, copyright, etc).

Once that’s done, I would develop a website where I can tell people about my product and what I’m trying to do. If it is a product I can start selling directly to consumers, then I would start doing that. That’s how you see if you have the product that people need and if you have the systems, knowledge and processes to supply that product. If it is a product more for industry, wholesalers and resellers then networking would also be urgent and important.

Either way, using the Internet through various social media networks would have to play in your marketing mix. But you will need a website to drive your traffic to, where people can find out more about your product and your business, and contact you when they are ready to buy, partner or invest in you.

Source: Marquez Comelab answered this question on Quora on 20 August 2015. The original question was, “I have my product almost ready, but I have no company, no co-founder, no contacts. How do I proceed from here? They don’t even let you register a company alone in India”. 

Why protect your personal and business data on your phone

By | Articles | No Comments

Your phone is sending and receiving data all the time. This data can be intercepted by exploiting vulnerabilities of a signalling system, SS7, used by more than 800 telecommunication companies across the world. Through this, criminals, hackers, spies and governments  are able to listen in to your conversations, steal information stored on your phone and track your location.

It is clear the risks of having your phone hacked by ‘petty’ criminals are just as real as having your car or credit card details stolen. In a recent 60 Minutes report (Australian Edition), the reporter Ross Coulthart drove around Sydney with a cryptophone to detect the use of devices known as IMSI-catchers (International Mobile Subscriber Identity) that facilitate mobile eavesdropping. While in Sydney, Coulthart detected 10 such devices trying to hack into his calls, even right outside the Australian Stock Exchange.

The security hole was first identified back in 2008. Government, Security Agencies and the Telecommunications industry knew about it. The report ended with the question: why is this security hole not being plugged?

The risk of our information being hacked through your phone have always been there. I once thought the skills and knowledge required to hack people’s mobile phones was reserved mainly to spies, government agencies and highly-skilled hackers. Perhaps this assumption was once true, but definitely not anymore.

Stop for a moment and think what would happen if information you have on your phone fell in the hands of a criminal. Think of your access codes to your bank accounts. What happens if you lose all your lifesavings? That money for the car that needs replacing? That urgent surgery to save your or your child’s life?

If you are a business owner or an executive you are likely to have private, sensitive and confidential information on your phone. What would happen to your business if this data was accessed by criminals, your competitors and other third parties? There are all sorts of concerns, from financial fraud to physical security, that you stand to deal with if this ever becomes an issue for you.

In my next post I will show how I encrypted the data on my phone to help you do the same and secure your data on your mobile phone as well.

————–

In future posts we will offer more tips and tricks on how to protect yourself and your business from unauthorised access to your information so make sure to bookmark this page, follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Google Plus or Linked In.

List of Social Media Networks and Websites to Promote your Business

By | Articles, SEO, SEM & Marketing | No Comments

For a long time, we, at Oranges and Lime, have been meeting many of our clients through personal networks, actual (as in off-line) business events, business breakfasts, referrals and the like. The reason for this was that most small business owners were not yet active online. We found them to be technological laggards, meaning it was taking them some time to adapt and accept new technologies.

Times are changing however. Now, we are finding that many business owners have a Facebook account and they are browsing the Internet more to research the types of services we are offering. As Social Media Networks becomes more ubiquitous, because more people are using them, they are becoming a crucial element to any business’ marketing mix.

Here is a list of Social Media Networks or websites to promote your business, engage with your audience, with others in your industry and meet potential customers. We will sort them according to our preference. So if you only have time to target one social network, go for the first one. If you have time for two, target the first two and so on. Obviously, some networks might be more suited to your type of business and others may not. We will soon add the positives and negatives with each of these. We are continually updating this post and we use a lot more websites and social media tools, so bookmark this page and come back again for the latest updates!

1. Twitter

Twitter Logo

Follow us on Twitter

Twitter is built for quick announcements. From a Business Standpoint, that makes it a great tool to quickly update and share with your audience. Twitter is well embedded in many online tools, websites and mobile apps.

2. Google Plus

googleplus

We like Google Plus for its use for Circles. You can organise people in Circles and choose to share what you want to with those circles. We find the use of Circles a lot easier with Google Plus more efficient than the way Pages work on Facebook. There’s a few more about Google Plus that makes it a very good Business Platform. Having started Google Plus earlier when they challenged Facebook’s social networking supremacy, I can say, Facebook has copied a lot of the features they came up with.

Connect with Oranges and Lime on Google Plus.

3. Quora

Quora Logo

Quora is a website where users ask each other questions. It has a wide range of topics. I had a Quora account for a while. However, it’s only been recently that I have been engaging with other users there. I answered a few questions, less then ten, from other users asking me questions about business, starting up, entrepreneurship, web design and web development as well as science and religion. Within about a week, 3000 people have read my answers! I saw Jimmy Wales of Wikipedia answering questions there as well as Matt Mullenweg, founder of WordPress and others. I remember seeing an Ashton Kutcher replying to a question.

The amount of clutter like irrelevant sarcasm, verbal ‘swipes’ and arguments are minimised. People seem to get straight to the point with this format. There are really thought-provoking questions there that start off interesting conversations, I find.

Follow me in Quora: http://www.quora.com/Marquez-Comelab 

4. Stumble Upon

StumbleUpon Logo

In our opinion, Stumble Upon is an under-rated power-house when it comes driving traffic to a website if done right.

Follow us in Stumble Upon: http://www.stumbleupon.com/stumbler/orangesandlime

5. Blogger

Blogger

Blogger is free. It’s good for SEO reasons because since Google owns it, we can only suppose that Google index every page of it for advertising purposes. Like I said, however, it has its limits for a serious blogger who might eventually want to customise their blogs or might want to do more than just blogging.

As good as Blogger is for anybody starting out, we do not use it ourselves. I personally still have an old blog kept there for archiving reasons but t’s been a while since we used Blogger because for our professional purpose. As web developers ourselves we are used to having full control to our blogs and websites and so we came across limitations with Blogger pretty quickly. This is not a statement against Blogger because all the tools on this page would fall in the same category. The difference with blogging is that it is a big part of your business and website and its SEO. I, as a business owner would want it to be stored on a server in which I have control, and that I can modify it whenever and however I want. Secondly, I want my blog to be accessible from my company’s domain name. It looks a bit awkward for visitors to be browsing your website, click on your blog then all of a sudden find themselves in a slightly different looking website with a different domain name. It gives it that disjointed experience.

The main blog of choice for professional use is WordPress. Contact us, if you want us to discuss what is involved with building a WordPress blog for you, your business or your organisation.

6. Tumblr

Tumblr Logo

If you think micro-blogging is for you, try Tumblr. Topics are easy to find and the quality and context of writing is niched, personal and very casual type of writing. Keep the Safe Search setting option however if you do not want inappropriate search results to come up. We found it works great for promoting products using lots of photos of products. We’ll add Instagram Pinterest later but they’re good platforms for posts with appealing images.

Similar to Blogger, I would not use it as my main Blogging platform to represent my company’s official blog. It is a good tool to engage people who are already in Tumblr.

Contact us, if you want us to discuss what is involved with building a professional blog for you, your business or your organisation.

7. Facebook

Facebook Logo

With Facebook, you create a Business Page for your Business. Depending on your personal Facebook network and the type of business you’re in, Facebook Business Pages might work for you. If you have a business selling directly to consumers, then that’s when your personal network — your friends and family — can really help you out. If you are however in Business to Business, like us, we find other channels more effective.

If you want to use Facebook, expect to pay advertising dollars before you can grow your audience, especially if you are in a niche that is not really popular to your personal contacts. In such cases, we would recommend using Google Plus, Twitter and Stumble Upon and others. If you are willing to put in the time to be active in those other networks, you will find it easier to bring traffic to your website.

If you are like us and are not planning to be as active on Facebook as you would be in other marketing activities, we would still recommend you have a Facebook Page for your business, and post when you can. The ‘SEO Juice’ is worth it and rightly or not, people usually expect businesses to have a Facebook page.

Like our Facebook Page

Which Social Media Networks do you use for your business? Are they working for you? Why do you think that is? Send us your answers so we can share your ideas too.

As the CEO, Managing Director or Business Owner, be THE cheerleader for your business or company

By | Articles | No Comments

The biggest responsibility that you have as a CEO, a Managing Director or a Business Owner should be to be the cheerleader for your business or company. As the Leader, it is your job to tell the world about the great things your business is doing, about the great achievements your people are accomplishing and about the solutions you are providing to many of your customers and clients whose problems your team is solving.

For CEOs and Managing Directors of big companies that can have a Marketing Department, perhaps you can afford to delegate this responsibility to your Marketing Manager. However for the other 95% of businesses classified as small, micro or sole proprietorships, the consequences for you not ‘stepping up to the plate’ would have a big impact on whether your business will languish or succeed.

What does it mean to be the cheerleader for your company or business? What it means is that you have to be willing to be the front man or woman of your business. You have to be willing to put your face on photos, your voice on podcasts and your thoughts on blog posts and articles your business publishes.

I know this is not easy. You might think it is because you are afraid or that you convince yourself you do not have the personality to be a public persona for your brand. You might have a lot of self-doubt. You might deep inside believe that your business will not succeed. You might somewhat believe that you do not have what it takes. You look at the many people behind so many other businesses and individuals who you perceive are doing better than you at what you do. But none of these matter. The question is: do you still want to be in the game? Do you still want to win?

If you still want to win, then know that no one else has more passion for your business than you. So if you do not go out there and promote your business, who will?

—————–

Do you have any thoughts or experiences that relate to this post? Send them through.

Oranges and Lime Corporation is now Incorporated!

By | Announcements | No Comments

I hope you, dear reader, have been well. Even though our blog posts have not reflected it, we have been busy this 2015. Since March, we have begun the transition to become an International Business. So after months of making it happen, we now have Oranges and Lime Corporation in the British Virgin Islands, where thousands of other global corporations have incorporated.

For customers outside of Australia, they are going to be dealing with Oranges and Lime Corporation (BVI Company Number 1876994).

For customers in Australia, our team there in Australia with (ABN 93019857004) will continue to take care of you.

What does this mean for you?

We just feel obliged to publicly disclose this development to clarify any confusion for our existing clients, prospective customers, partners and other third parties. This is all. In short, nothing really changes for our current clients and partners. We still share the same website and we will still be working together as a unified team to continue taking care of you the same way we always have.

The only difference is, we are now in a better position to be able to provide our services to you, wherever you are around the world. There are also more opportunities now for us to explore ways to provide our existing services to you quicker, faster while keeping the costs among the lowest in our market space.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year 2014

By | Podcasts | No Comments

As the year winds down to a close, we would like to say Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all of you from the team here at Oranges and Lime. And we want to say it with sound, so here we have a Christmas podcast to catch up since our last one. We hope you enjoy your special time with your family and friends and have a stellar New Year’s Celebration!

Oranges and Lime: Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!