Understanding Domain Names: Why and When?

As a web professional, there are things we have to deal with outside the realms of development and design. Sometimes it’s a matter of business, sometimes it’s keeping our finances in order, and every now and again, the subject of branding, re-branding or protecting our brand hits our to-do list.
When you begin your journey into starting up your first freelance portfolio, this information will play a vital role in how you represent yourself, however, that’s not to say that this subject won’t recur later on.

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As a web professional, there are things we have to deal with outside the realms of development and design. Sometimes it’s a matter of business, sometimes it’s keeping our finances in order, and every now and again, the subject of branding, re-branding or protecting our brand hits our to-do list.

Understanding Domain Names: Why and When?

When you begin your journey into starting up your first freelance portfolio, this information will play a vital role in how you represent yourself, however, that’s not to say that this subject won’t recur later on.

Online Brand Availability

If you ever want to launch that start-up idea you have, or if you want to build a new business, a basic knowledge of domain names is critically important. After all, it represents your office’s address.

Website Address
Figure 1: The website address is critically important, thought should go into its branding.

Within this article, we’re going to explore your options, once you’ve got yourself an idea for what (if anything) your new project should be called, and critically, what your project actually does. Because it’s not a sexy chore, and somewhat frustrating to find that perfect domain (with lots being sucked up and left unused), it’s one of the hardest challenges you’ll likely encounter.

With the advice below, you’ll at least have an idea of which domain types matter, and thereby, which you should focus on attaining (and if you can’t get it, when you should reconsider your brand due to unavailability).

Prioritize: The Trendy Three

Domain names in truth are a little biased to whether the audience can remember the extension. It might seem ideal to snag yourself a free .TK domain in preference to buying a more easily recognised extension, but that will work against you when your visitors begin trying to locate you for the first time. While increasing numbers of TLD’s are becoming available on the Web, the truth is that visitors will automatically assume your site uses one of three extensions: dot COM, NET or ORG.

Perhaps this feels a bit unfair due to the lack of good available names in the system, but if you can get one of the top three (or all three if the brand is named really creatively), you’ll put yourself in an ideal position.

Most widely recognised extensions
Figure 2: Dot COM, NET and ORG and the most widely recognised extensions. Get them if you can!

When you’re working with the top three domains, the great thing is that they’re often among the cheapest to register, and even more critically, all domain and hosting providers will likely support them (in terms of offering the ability to register and renew ownership). While I would say it’s not as essential to own one of the big three as it used to be (due to more people becoming web aware), there are still a huge number of people who don’t understand the web, and won’t likely realize that extensions exists outside of .com, .net and .org exist, so they do still hold sway over consumers. Leer más “Understanding Domain Names: Why and When?”

Desktop Wallpaper Calendar: February 2011

We always try our best to challenge your artistic abilities and produce some interesting, beautiful and creative artwork. And as designers we usually turn to different sources of inspiration. As a matter of fact, we’ve discovered the best one — desktop wallpapers that are a little more distinctive than the usual crowd. This creativity mission has been going on for almost two years now, and we are very thankful to all designers who have contributed and are still diligently contributing each month.

We continue to nourish you with a monthly spoon of inspiration for the next 12 months. This post features 40 free desktop wallpapers created by artists across the globe for February 2011. Both versions with a calendar and without a calendar can be downloaded for free. It’s time to freshen up your wallpaper!


We always try our best to challenge your artistic abilities and produce some interesting, beautiful and creative artwork. And as designers we usually turn to different sources of inspiration. As a matter of fact, we’ve discovered the best one — desktop wallpapers that are a little more distinctive than the usual crowd. This creativity mission has been going on for almost two years now, and we are very thankful to all designers who have contributed and are still diligently contributing each month.

We continue to nourish you with a monthly spoon of inspiration for the next 12 months. This post features 40 free desktop wallpapers created by artists across the globe for February 2011. Both versions with a calendar and without a calendar can be downloaded for free. It’s time to freshen up your wallpaper!

Please note that:

(Update): you may want to take a look at February 2011 Windows 7 Themes3 as well.

For the Birds

“An old birdcage in the sky.” Designed by Kristen Cook from USA.

For The Birds 93 in Desktop Wallpaper Calendar: February 2011

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Madonna And Chihuahua

“Dog is the new Child.” Designed by Olivia Osik15 from Estonia.

Madonna And Chihuahua 18 in Desktop Wallpaper Calendar: February 2011 Leer más “Desktop Wallpaper Calendar: February 2011”

Desktop Wallpaper Calendar: October 2010

Desktop wallpapers can serve as an excellent source of inspiration. However, if you use some specific wallpaper for a long period of time, it becomes harder to draw inspiration out of it. That’s why we have decided to supply you with smashing wallpapers over 12 months. And to make them a little bit more distinctive from the usual crowd, we’ve decided to embed calendars for the upcoming month. So if you need to look up some date, isn’t it better to show off a nice wallpaper with a nice calendar instead of launching some default time application?

This post features 45 free desktop wallpapers, created by designers across the globe. Both versions with a calendar and without a calendar can be downloaded for free.

Please notice:

* all images can be clicked and lead to the preview of the wallpaper;
* you can feature your work in our magazine by taking part in our desktop wallpaper calendar series. We are regularly looking for creative designers and artists to be featured on Smashing Magazine. Are you one of them?

So what wallpapers have we received for October 2010?


Smashing Magazine

Desktop wallpapers can serve as an excellent source of inspiration. However, if you use some specific wallpaper for a long period of time, it becomes harder to draw inspiration out of it. That’s why we have decided to supply you with smashing wallpapers over 12 months. And to make them a little bit more distinctive from the usual crowd, we’ve decided to embed calendars for the upcoming month. So if you need to look up some date, isn’t it better to show off a nice wallpaper with a nice calendar instead of launching some default time application?

This post features 45 free desktop wallpapers, created by designers across the globe. Both versions with a calendar and without a calendar can be downloaded for free.

Please notice:

So what wallpapers have we received for October 2010?

Liquifly

Designed by Nicolle Marie from USA.

Liquifly in Desktop Wallpaper Calendar: October 2010

Any Browser

“I just wanna spread the message, “Use any browser, it doesn’t matter. But use the latest version!”.” Designed by Minhaj Mohamed from Sri Lanka.

Any-browser-wallpaper in Desktop Wallpaper Calendar: October 2010

October 2010 Wallpaper

“For October 2010, still with the summer in the head, I wanted to imagine a magic place where I can go sometimes far from work, far from the Earth.” Designed by Benoit Chartron from France.

Wallpaper 99 in Desktop Wallpaper Calendar: October 2010

Desktop Wallpaper Calendar: August 2010

Desktop wallpapers can serve as an excellent source of inspiration. However, if you use some specific wallpaper for a long period of time, it becomes harder to draw inspiration out of it. That’s why we have decided to supply you with smashing wallpapers over 12 months. And to make them a little bit more distinctive from the usual crowd, we’ve decided to embed calendars for the upcoming month. So if you need to look up some date, isn’t it better to show off a nice wallpaper with a nice calendar instead of launching some default time application?

This post features 50 free desktop wallpapers, created by designers across the globe. Both versions with a calendar and without a calendar can be downloaded for free.

Please notice:

* all images can be clicked and lead to the preview of the wallpaper;
* you can feature your work in our magazine by taking part in our desktop wallpaper calendar series. We are regularly looking for creative designers and artists to be featured on Smashing Magazine. Are you one of them?

So what wallpapers have we received for August 2010?

[Offtopic: by the way, did you know that we are publishing a Smashing eBook Series? The brand new eBook #3 is Mastering Photoshop For Web Design, written by our Photoshop-expert Thomas Giannattasio.]


Desktop wallpapers can serve as an excellent source of inspiration. However, if you use some specific wallpaper for a long period of time, it becomes harder to draw inspiration out of it. That’s why we have decided to supply you with smashing wallpapers over 12 months. And to make them a little bit more distinctive from the usual crowd, we’ve decided to embed calendars for the upcoming month. So if you need to look up some date, isn’t it better to show off a nice wallpaper with a nice calendar instead of launching some default time application?

This post features 50 free desktop wallpapers, created by designers across the globe. Both versions with a calendar and without a calendar can be downloaded for free.

Please notice:

So what wallpapers have we received for August 2010?

[Offtopic: by the way, did you know that we are publishing a Smashing eBook Series? The brand new eBook #3 is Mastering Photoshop For Web Design, written by our Photoshop-expert Thomas Giannattasio.]

Superstar

“Has “the man” got you down? Feel like nobody sees what a superstar you are? Well keep on shining all day long with this retro-tastic wallpaper!” Designed by Brennan Gilbert from USA.

Superstar in  Desktop Wallpaper Calendar: August 2010