Monday, August 2, 2010

The added value of summer vacation

The book "Fear of Isaac" has renewed a foundation for us on the right attitude toward all Israeli holidays. The motto of the book, originally written in Yiddish, is translated into English (of course sounding better in Yiddish) as: "Be sure not to say the holiday was placed upon us. A more correct phrasing is: “We earned the holiday." Whoever says that the holiday was placed upon him, expresses, in fact, a temporary regard for the holiday.
The holiday was a good event at the time, maybe a break from routine or of moments of the pressures of life, and after the holiday passed and was forgotten, we return to our routine. This expression implies that the holiday was not marked for the future, and its effect did not last for the time that follows. Such regard must not suit the size of the event and meaning of "holiday" in the Hebrew calendar.
One of the purposes of each holiday is to leave a mark, as long as we reach a situation where we continue on our way, after the holiday, with a new charge added to our spiritual building. Indeed, the holiday has concluded, its days have passed, but it left its mark, and now we are equipped with a new addition related to the meaningful lessons of the holiday. Such should be the situation for every holiday.

And what about summer vacation?
Will we mark a check at the end of summer vacation and breathe a sigh of relief? “Another vacation passed. Everyone is healthy and well. We did it." In this case, although you can use the phrase "freedom passed over me" there is an alternative. Turns out that my children will benefit from new learning episodes and experiences that are unique to summer vacation. For example: the importance of planning a day’s events, even when there are no pressures or obligations, the value of keeping the same time frame, the enjoyment of flexibility and lack of commitment, the ability to enjoy doing nothing, the pleasure of learning for learning itself regardless of grades, the necessity or the teachers, the ability to decide on one’s own what to do today and many other unique benefits only to summer vacation, depending on the child and the home.
Summer vacation is not a holiday or commemoration. Its spiritual value is not obvious, but is a result of the investment that we invest in it, both in positive and negative sense. Judaism provides a place for various kinds of "freedom" when the meaning of freedom is not a waste of time but the change of framework. Even the sentence, "sleep on Shabbat is pleasure", is not interpreted literally but rather as "change" – learning experiences on Shabbat are different from those on the weekdays. The differences that take place on Shabbat are pleasurable: learning without the pressure of time, without disturbing daily occupations, and from a place of "great soul." This kind of change has the greatest value.

The choice to view summer vacation as a change of framework having positive value, however, will not necessarily prevent sentences such as: "Mom I'm bored" or the magical wish of all mothers, to shorten the summer vacation, but it is easier for me to deal with and allows me, as a mother, to concentrate on the advantages, rather than the disadvantages, of summer vacation.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

What is a corporate Web image and why is it so important?

The World Wide Web in the modern era is undoubtedly an integral part of our daily routine, both from a personal and a business perspective. For this very reason, a corporate Web image is a key tool for building exposure to reach potential target audiences and to create a professional image, which constitutes an inseparable part of an effective business plan of any company that prides itself on attaining maximum market exposure.

A bit about using the Web
The Web is an inseparable part of the technological revolution that has unfolded over the past decade, and is still unfolding, to this very day, throughout the globe, and mainly in Western countries. Internet usage has been steadily on the increase across the globe, when at the beginning of 2009, the number of Web surfers throughout the globe exceeded one billion. China currently leads in the number of Web surfers. Obviously, the United States ranks second, followed by, in descending order – Japan, Germany and Britain. In recent years, the Web has also entered into relatively new horizons, and has become a part of the daily routine of the local population, even in Arab countries. Internet surfers in all corners of the earth use the Web to cover a very wide range of objectives. Hence, the familiar adage “if you’re not online, you don’t exist”, is very appropriate in this case.

What is a corporate website?
People tend to compare the corporate website to a display window – one that showcases the company to surfers. Just like a display window, the corporate website image must spark a real interest in the company among surfers, encourage them to deepen their acquaintance with the company and its services, and ultimately, to drive a marketing process that will eventually lead to a sale. The corporate website actually describes the company – its activity, products, services, maturity, customers, and any other important information that the company defined as their objective. As such, the corporate website is of tremendous strategic value, and is also crucial in terms of exposure to potential to target audiences. This is why a corporate website has to be professional from all aspects, from the website structure to its design, as well as in maintaining proper content.
Another important aspect related to corporate websites is their uniqueness. Like the image of a display window, the Web is like a virtual shopping mall of huge proportions, which vies for the surfer’s attention, and indirectly competes to keep sales afloat. This is where the website uniqueness comes in, and one of the corporate website objectives’ is to highlight the company’s benefits and advantages compared to its competitors.

Corporate website – what is it comprised of?
Most corporate websites currently contain several standard pages: a Homepage, About the company, Services, or a Catalog of Products, and a Contact Us form. The number of pages on a corporate website is unlimited, and you can always add important information as the need arises. A list of customers, professional articles, a gallery of photos and a corporate movie are today’s standard options. However, it is very important to avoid information overload which makes a website look unprofessional. Additionally, as advised previously, it is very important that a Contact Us form also appear on the website. This form is a basic interactive tool that serves both the company and the surfer to make initial contact.
In conclusion, corporate websites are currently a first rate marketing tool; there are many companies that specialize in building professional corporate websites, including “Daat”. Over the years, Daat has accumulated a wealth of experience in setting up corporate websites with clear marketing objectives – from the initial creation of a work plan through selecting the appropriate platform, to defining and designing the most suitable look and feel.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

The Voice Behind Daat-Why wait for vacation? A break, here and now.

The "summer vacation" of my childhood now replaces a "week off" that one day I will decide to take, and they always seemed to me to be a time when I will carry out all of my plans, since there is nothing like vacation in which I am “liberated” from every burden, timelines and commitments, in order to do all of the things that require free-time, which I until now I have not really been able to do.
Is that so?
When I think about vacation, I think about quality time with myself, time to dream, to relax, to be free of harassment. I dream of being with my kids, without emails and phone calls, without concern for order and cleanliness and other hassles that are always squeaking in my head.
This is the 11th year of the summer vacation period that is the busiest time in my work. This year, when I started to think about plans for vacation and check the calendar, I discovered that there simply isn’t opportunity to carry out even 10% of it. Looking back, I have never been able to carry out more than a small part of all the plans I had planned.
A month ago I went to a meeting at an unfamiliar address in Tel Aviv. When the taxi stopped, I found myself in front of the promenade. I remembered my unrealized plan for years, sitting in front of the sea during a sunset with a cold drink, and decided that at the end of my meeting, I'll take a vacation for 15 minutes in front of the sea. Two hours later, I set a timer for 15 minutes and started to relax with a bottle of soft drink in one hand, a work portfolio well hidden under a chair. I cleared my head from every thought, I concentrated on the breeze, the warm sun, the smell of salt and nothing else.
20 minutes later, I sat in the taxi on the way back to the Daat office, and realized I was on the way to change. I realized that the secret is doing, not to wait, not for summer vacation and not for a short vacation. To combine the moments of vacation with life itself. To set aside a few hours from time to time and to invest them in myself and in my family. To decide on a vacation day that would be convenient to be taken advantage of on that same day: whether with activity or rest and relaxation. To live the vacation and not to wait for it.
In other words, in order to feel the vacation, we don’t necessarily need an actual vacation.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Apple Gives 'OK' to Begin Developing iPhone Applications for iOS4

Earlier this month, iPhone developers around the world received an exciting piece news -- an 'OK' from Apple to submit applications for the iOS4. Apple began sending notifications that several new downloads were available from the iPhone Dev Center on the company’s website. One of them is the iOS 4 GM seed, a pre-release version of Apple’s next-gen operating system, which is to be installed and used with the purpose of developing applications for iOS4.

At the iPhone Development Center as well as under the New Announcements section on Apple's website, there was an announcement for developers to log into iTunes Connect and submit an iOS4 application so that it would be ready for sale when the iOS 4 application is available to iPhone and iPhone Touch customers. Apple indicated to developers to make sure that they built and tested their appications using iOS 4 and iPhone SDK 4 Golden Master seed available from the iPhone Development Center. Programmers with outdated development software and iPhone OS 4 betas can download updated software.

In addition to the aforementioned downloads, downloads such as the iAd JS and iTunes 9.2, which adds the ability to sync with iPhone 4, organize and sync PDF documents as books, read PDFs with iBooks 1.1 on iPad and any iPhone or iPod touch with iPhone OS 4, organize apps on iPhone OS 4 home screens into folders using iTunes, and more will also be available.

Daat Solutions is now developing iPhone & smartphone applications with a combination of different technologies, including Objective-C. Unlike other types of devices, smartphones use a combination of old and new technology. It’s important to know when to develop an application or a mini-html site, and also when to combine them. With additional assistance from Realcommerce, a certified-developer of Apple products, Daat is able to specialize in the specific requirements necessary for the development of applications on these new devices.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Apple Launching iAd Mobile Advertising for iOS4

News got underway that Apple will launch its iAd mobile advertising program beginning on July 1 on iPod touch and iPhone devices running the new iOS4. Apple's CEO, Steve Jobs, said that the iAds will reach out to millions of customers which is a highly desirable demographic for advertisers. He demonstrated an iAd campaign still in-development to promote Nissan's new electric car. The iAd launches a video that then goes into a simple navigation selector, which presents the ability to register for more information including a sweepstakes to win a new car.

The new iOS 4 incorporates support for the new iAd program, which will facilitate add support for the iAd banner for developers. The main feature of iAd is a launched HTML5 environment for developers upon clicking a banner. When the ad closes users resort back to the most recently used application instead of returning to an an external website. The intent is more effective and interesting advertising for developers. Instead of focusing on earning ad revenues, Apple plans to use iAd as a program to give incentive to application development.

The iAd banners and web-based advertisements are produced wth Apple's new iAd JS, a JavaScript library which is a feature of iOS 4. It's designed to allow ad designers to produce quality media assets within a self contained website. The iOS4 present iAd bundles saved as part of a developer's application or can load them from Apple's servers. This presents users with a branding environment that advertisers would like to attract user interaction, rather than exposing users to flashy, intrusive ads.

At Daat, we are now developing iPhone & smartphone applications with a host of different technologies, including Objective-C. Unlike other devices, smartphones use a combination of old and new technology. It’s important to know when to develop an application or a mini-html site, and also when to combine them. With assistance from Realcommerce, a certified-developer of Apple products, Daat is able to specialize in the specific requirements necessary for the development of applications on these new devices.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

The Voice Behind Daat

The Voice Behind Daat - Being a working mother

This isn't a new topic, but it's one that never gets old or boring. If you ask any working mother, how she does it and how she feels about going into an office while her child is at home being looked after by someone that isn't her, she'll tell you that it isn't easy. In fact, it's very difficult and sometimes it feels awful.

When a mother chooses to work outside the home, she takes many things into account. Sometimes, it's not even a choice, it's a necessity to work outside the home. For me, it was a combination of both.

I began my career as both a mother and the sole provider for my household. For a long time, I knew that I wanted to take advantage of my talents in the field of technology. From a very young age, I knew I wanted to be a programmer. In order to accomplish my professional dream, I studied and received a degree in Computer Science and spent every additional minute learning more about the subject. It was my hobby and it had once been my profession, and I enjoyed it and I didn't want to give it up.

It was important for me, as it is with many women, to find a balance between work and motherhood. There were years I worked fewer hours and years I worked longer hours; years I worked in the home and years I worked outside the home. It wasn't easy and sometimes balancing the two was difficult, but somehow I made it work.

It's clear to me now that my family and I paid some kind of price for having to balance these two things, but it's also clear to me that my family has gained from it as well. My children are more independent than they would have been had I been at home all the time. They've learned how to manage their own time and schedules. They find pleasure in their own hobbies and work. My children also understand that money doesn't grow on trees, and they have the tools to understand where money falls in the grand scheme of things. In addition to everything, there mother was able to be a private instructor for them, teaching them computers, programming, English, and Mathematics. I can't deny that it's nice to see all five of my children wanting careers in technology, but only time will tell if they actually follow through with this.

Because I understand the price a mother and her children pay when working outside the home, it's important for me to try to find an easier way for women to balance work and her family.

Most women who work at Daat are ultra-Orthodox mothers who want to work outside the home and develop technological skills in programming, software testing, and content writing for web development. We provide them with challenging projects and a flexible schedule that respects their needs as well as our customers.

I must note that during the years I've realized that working mothers have some kind of special power that allows them to work exactly the right amount of hours to produce exceptional work, and still they are able to take care of their children. There must be a guardian angel for each woman that helps her be a successful professional and an amazing mother.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

The Voice of Daat: Independence Day

If during Passover, I looked up the definition of the word “freedom,” then today, I ask myself what the definition of “independence” is. What is an independent country and what is an independent woman?
In my opinion, independence is expressed through the right to vote.

As citizens of this country, we have the right to choose our leaders and influence the social and political processes and all the other state affairs.
The generation living under Turkish rule and the British Mandate lived under the rule that they did not choose. They lived under a different people who ruled them, shaped their lives, and granted or denied their rights.
Women of the previous generation, who already lived in an independent state, had no right to choose their personal lives. Women's employment was not acceptable and legitimate during the years in which my mother’s generation was at the height of its bloom. A woman could work as a teacher or at a daycare or from home as a seamstress. Most other professions were not an option for them.

The right to vote is the cornerstone of Judaism. But this right is limited. The Torah states "See that I gave you today life and death and good and evil…. And you have chosen in life." Every person has the right and the obligation to use the power of foresight, to see life and listen to what they have chosen. This is a call to action. Regarding choice. But, along with granting the right to vote, the Creator commands us to choose live. We need to be guided and commanded in the choosing, because a person is a combination of matter and spirit, body and soul, not always inclined to choose the right path.
Choice in life is not trivial. Choice in life usually not choosing what’s easy, comfortable, habitual, what the environment expects from you to do. Choice in life is a choice that results in thought, individual work, and thorough review.
In our generation the right to vote has been expanded. We elect the government and its employment, each of us can choose between being a housewife or a working woman, too. Almost all professions are open to us, all schools, all options to pursue higher education.
When choosing life, it often becomes necessary to compromise or give up one’s wills, to understand and meet the challenges that our choice brings, sometimes reselect the same choice after further thought and sometimes change direction. Every choice has a price and usually there is no such thing as perfection.

When choosing, we must remember the commandment, and that you have chosen in life. You have to choose what grants a fuller, significant life, life that is comforting and to arrive at a choice that you can live with content.