Space Exploration Posters, Courtesy of the Jet Propulsion Lab
Posted by Rebecca Blake on December 28, 2017
NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab gave us all a lovely holiday gift: a series of space exploration posters, free for downloading and printing. The series, titled Visions of the Future, channels retro poster design from the WPA-era to tout vacation destinations such as Ceres, Jupiter, and Kepler-186f (the first earth-sized planet speculated to be capable of sustaining life). The files can be downloaded as high resolution TIFFs or PDFs, at 20x30”.
The posters are the creation of “The Studio,” a team of designers, illustrators, and visual strategists at the JPL. The Studio creates visuals, such as the space exploration poster series, which communicate the excitement and vision of the JPL. However, their mission goes beyond that of a typical art department. In a video created by The Otis Report on the Creative Economy, Dan Goods, Visual Strategist at The Studio, and Charles Elachi, PhD, Director of the JPL, speak about the importance of the exchange of ideas and inspiration between The Studio and JPL engineers and scientists.
That collaboration is evident in the Visions of the Future poster series. While depicting fanciful interpretations of each planet and moon, The Studio staff solicited feedback from JPL scientists. That red foliage on Kepler-186f? That was inspired by the information that the light spectrum radiated by Kepler’s star is a different spectrum than earth’s sun. On a background page on the poster series, creative strategist David Delgado, illustrator Joby Harris, and typographer Lois Kim describe the thought process behind each poster. Our only quibble with the series? We would have loved to have seen a rendition of Saturn – what would The Studio have done with those rings!?
Poster thumbnails, courtesy NASA/JPL-Caltech
Credits for the posters
Dan Goods, David Delgado
Liz Barrios De La Torre (Ceres, Europa)
Stefan Bucher (Jupiter Design)
Invisible Creature (Grand Tour, Mars, Enceladus)
Joby Harris (Kepler 16b, Earth, Kepler 186f, PSO J318.5-22, Titan)
Jessie Kawata (Venus)
Lois Kim (Typography for Venus and Europa)
Ron Miller (Jupiter Illustration)
Health Insurance Options, Now That the Federal Enrollment Period is Over
Posted by Rebecca Blake on December 19, 2017
If you had wanted to sign up for health insurance but missed the enrollment period for the federal exchange, you may still have options to get coverage at HealthCare.gov. If you’ve experienced a qualifying life event or any number of specific conditions, you may qualify for a special enrollment period. But your first step should be to double check that your state doesn’t have a state health exchange with an enrollment period extended beyond the federal exchange.
Residents of many states no longer have access to an open enrollment; either their state never set up a health insurance exchange, requiring their residents to purchase insurance on the federal exchange, or their enrollment period has ended. Note that while the states listed below have extended enrollment periods, coverage may not begin until after February 1st. Check your state’s website for details on the coverage period, and to enroll:
• California: January 31 https://www.coveredca.com
• Colorado: January 12 http://connectforhealthco.com
• District of Columbia: January 31 https://dchealthlink.com
• Massachusetts: January 23 https://www.mahealthconnector.org
• Minnesota: January 15 https://www.mnsure.org
• New York: January 31 https://nystateofhealth.ny.gov
• Rhode Island: December 31 https://healthsourceri.com
• Washington: January 15 https://www.wahealthplanfinder.org
Residents of the remaining 42 states may be eligible to sign up for coverage under a Special Enrollment Period if they’ve experienced any of a number of life changes:
• Gotten married
• Had a baby, adopted, or placed a child in foster care
• Lost insurance through divorce or legal separation
• Lost insurance through death of a family member
• Moved to a new zip code, county, or state, or moved to the US
• Moved to attend school or to follow seasonal work, or from a shelter
• Lost a job which provided health insurance
• Lost health coverage from a plan purchased independently
• Became ineligible for Medicare, Medicaid, or CHIP
• Turned 26 and became ineligible to be covered on a parent’s health plan
There are additional “complex issues” which can be taken into consideration when evaluating whether you are eligible for coverage under a Special Enrollment Period. These include: unexpected hospitalizations or temporary disability, technical errors at the HealthCare.gov website that prevented enrollment from going through properly, receiving incorrect information on HealthCare.gov when you selected your plan, and experiencing spousal abuse or abandonment. If you apply for consideration in a Special Enrollment Period and are denied, you can appeal the decision.
The Guild conducted a free webinar on the ACA and its options in mid-November. However, it’s been a rocky Fall for those wanting to sign up for health insurance. The repeated efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act, let alone provisions in the proposed tax legislation, have made predicting insurance options and rates for 2018 extremely difficult. Our own free webinar on signing up for the ACA had to be revised the day before the webinar, and even then was outstripped by political developments in the previous 24 hours.
Below: Although the enrollment period at HealthCare.gov is over, you may still qualify for coverage.
The Guild Joins Visual Artists for a December Lobbying Visit
Posted by Advocacy Liaison on December 08, 2017
On December 4-5, the Guild joined our Coalition of Visual Artists for a trip to Capitol Hill to lobby on behalf of graphic artists in support of the CASE Act. The Copyright Alternative in Small-Claims Enforcement (CASE) Act was introduced by Representatives Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY) and Tom Marino (R-PA) in October. The Act creates a Copyright Claims Board to oversee small copyright cases in a process that for copyright holders is faster, less expensive, and simpler than the current system. While the Act has had wide bipartisan support – five co-sponsors across party lines – the Guild and Coalition members are encouraging additional Representatives to co-sponsor the bill.
The Guild joined counsel and members of the photography associations ASMP, NANPA, NPPA, PPA, and APA, as well as Copyright Alliance CEO Keith Kupferschmid, in meeting with the staffs of a number of representatives. To make the case for the CASE Act, we focused our comments on an explanation of how the very means by which graphic artists generate publicity and find new clients — online portfolios — is rampantly infringed. We also explained that with a majority of lawyers declining to take copyright infringement cases with a potential outcome of under $30,000, individual graphic artists are often left limited options when their copyrights are infringed.
The Guild will continue to lobby on behalf of the legislation, and as it works its way through committee, will work to ensure that the interests of graphic artists are reflected in the bill. We’re also asking creators to contact their representative and ask him or her to consider co-sponsoring the bill. An action portal on copyrightdefense.com has been set up for individuals to find the contact information for their representative; a sample email and telephone script have been provided.
Below: A view of the Capitol from outside the Rayburn Office Building, which houses the offices of Representatives.
Guild Responds to Copyright Office Request on Group Registrations
Posted by Advocacy Liaison on December 01, 2017
The Graphic Artists Guild has submitted a response to a proposed rulemaking by the Copyright Office on Group Registrations of Unpublished Works. Currently, graphic artists do not have a group registration option; among visual artists, only photographers have a group registration option, and that is only for published photos. The Guild has advocated for extending a group registration option to other works of visual arts.
The proposed rulemaking by the Copyright Office establishes a new group registration option for unpublished works: up to five works may be submitted for the group registrations; all works must have the same author or joint authors; and each work must be published in the same administrative class (for example, works of the visual arts, works of the performing arts, literary works, etc.).
Notably, the group registration option will replace the current “unpublished collection” option. In its notice in the Federal Register, the Office states that the unpublished collection option is “ineffective” since it permits the registration of an unlimited number of works, whereas a more limited option would permit the Office to more easily examine each submission for its ability to be copyrighted, resulting in a better record and more efficient system.
In our response, the Guild welcomed the extension of a group registration option for graphic works. However, we raised a number of concerns with the proposed rulemaking, notably that limiting group registration to just five individual works is unfeasible for graphic artists, who often generate a greater number of works (sketches, revisions, alternate versions) in the execution of a single project. We also asked for the Copyright Office to issue an opinion on what constitutes publication for online works since, in a digital age, the distinction between “published” and “unpublished” is often confused.
What To Do If You Think Your Client’s WordPress Site’s Been Hacked
Posted by Guest on November 21, 2017
By Bud Kraus
The frantic email, text, or call always comes at a bad time. Your client thinks their site's been hacked. What are you going to do?
Take a deep breath — even if you've done this before — and then head straight to the Sucuri Site Scanner, put your web address into the box, and hit the “Scan Website” button. Let the smart Sucuri people analyze your site. They'll let you know if there is a problem and if so, its likely cause.
If you get a result like this, then it's "Houston, we have a problem."
In this case, the site is being blacklisted from search engines and other sites because, in all likelihood, it has been compromised. Further investigation may turn up any or all of these issues:
1. Brute Force Attack: An illegal entry into your WordPress Admin.
2. File Inclusion Exploits: A method to compromise your wp-config.php, a mission-critical file in every WordPress site
3. MySQL Injection: Damage to or destruction of a database where data is maliciously added or removed.
4. Cross-site Scripting (XSS): Presents as a danger to your site's users.
5. Malware: Malicious code that is being used on your site.
How you resolve the problem(s) depends upon the nature of the problem, your skills and/or the co-operation you will get from the web hosting company. You may also need to hire an outside service, like Sucuri, to clean up the mess. They may recommend the use of a firewall for the site.
But wait — there's a step before Step 1.
“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” is not just a trite expression. In the business of keeping WordPress sites safer, it's true. At minimum, keeping WordPress software up-to-date is a must. Understanding how versions work with any WordPress software is easy, so keep this in mind:
1. If any update has two digits, like 4.9, that means it's a major update. New features will be introduced, as well as bug fixes or security patches.
2. If any update has three digits, like 4.9.1, this means no new features will be introduced. Three digit updates include only bug fixes and security patches.
WordPress software comes in three types, all of which need to be kept current:
1. WordPress Core Updates: Major (two-digit) updates are usually available two or three times per year. Three-digit updates occur on a more regular basis. Most web hosts will automatically do three-digit updates for you. The two-digit update is something you usually need to do on your own.
2. Theme Updates: Theme developers occasionally update their software. This may occur when WordPress itself is updated, but not necessarily; the two- and three-digit system applies for these updates as well. If you change your theme's coding, always make sure to create a Child Theme. That way, your customizations will not be lost when your theme is updated.
3. Plugin Updates: These can occur on a very regular basis. Again, you'll know what kind of update it is by noting if it's two or three digits. Good plugin developers frequently update their plugins.
Keeping Track Of The Updates
If you regularly log into a WordPress site it's easy to tell what needs to be updated. If not, I recommend using the WP Updates Notifier plugin. You will get email that lets you know if WordPress, your theme, or any plugins need to be updated. Ignore that email at your own peril! (Note: If you manage many sites, consider using ManageWP, which lets you update software from one c-Panel.)
Security Is A Shared Responsibility
Keeping software up to date is just part of the precautions you need to take to keep a site safe and in good working order. The web host also has a role to play. Have they added SSL to your domain? (You can request this and it's free in most cases). Are they using current versions of software, such as PHP? (7.0). Is the web host using a shared hosting plan? If so, that’s not nearly as secure as a Virtual Private Server.
In your contract with a client it should be clearly stipulated that you are to be held harmless and without liability if a site were to go down for any reason beyond your control. This includes sites you currently work on or maintain, as well as sites you no longer have responsibility for. In all cases, consult an attorney to help protect yourself from legal liability.
Bud Kraus has been teaching the fundamentals of web design for thousands of students at Pratt Institute, the Fashion Institute of Technology and for his private students for 20 years.
Besides teaching Bud works with individuals and small businesses developing their WordPress sites.
His free WordPress A To Z Series is for beginners or if a re-fresher course is needed. Get access to all his videos at https://joyofwp.com/courses/free-tutorials-course-to-learn-wordpress/.
Questions? email Bud at: firstname.lastname@example.orgNext Page
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