Tools

43 of the Best Freelancer Tools, 2013

by · May 16, 2013

You know how when you first started thinking about freelancing you thought about how incredible it would be?

Those thoughts of being able to work where you want, when you want. And that belief that you’d finally have tons of time to work on different projects.

Agreed, freelancing is amazing, BUT there’s that whole issue with time.

Because from the minute you decide to put your slippers on and become a freelancer, you’re suddenly expected to do more than just what you rock at professionally. Now you’re also expected to be:

  • office manager,
  • accountants department,
  • meeting coordinator

… you get where I’m going with this.

There are a bunch of ever growing tools out there to help you out.

The question is, how are you supposed to figure out what tools you need and which ones are the best?

We asked hundreds of awesome Donanza freelancers what are their favorite freelancer tools, and put together this comprehensive list of the best tools for 2013.

Check them out, use them, share them with your other freelancer pals, and let us know if there’s anything we missed that MUST be on there, before the year is out.

A couple of links: Low budget marketing, SEO tactics

Solving the Low-Budget Online Marketing Dilemma May 14, 2013 Stop me if you’ve heard this one:

Your bootstrapped startup is finally off the ground. You’re able to spend $6000/mo on AdWords to drive leads. Sure the conversion rates could be better, and sure it’s not the best ROI on Earth, but on the balance it’s making money.

You don’t have a huge budget, but you can plough some of your winnings back into advertising

 

How to Rank: 25 Step SEO Master Blueprint May 14th, 2013 – Posted by Cyrus Shepard to Intermediate & Advanced SEO

If you’re like most SEOs, you spend a lot of time reading. Over the past several years, I’ve spent 100s of hours studying blogs, guides, and Google patents. Not long ago, I realized that 90% of what I read each doesn’t change what I actually do – that is, the basic work of ranking a web page higher on Google.

For newer SEOs, the process can be overwhelming.

To simplify this process, I created this SEO blueprint. It’s meant as a framework for newer SEOs to build their own work on top of. This basic blueprint has helped, in one form or another, 100s of pages and dozens of sites to gain higher rankings.

Think of it as an intermediate SEO instruction manual, for beginners.

Good content is hard. Good content management is harder.

From A List Apart:

Kill Your CMS

WYSIWTF

by Karen McGrane ·

THE ERA of “desktop publishing” is over. Same goes for the era where we privilege the desktop web interface above all others. The tools we create to manage our content are vestiges of the desktop publishing revolution, where we tried to enable as much direct manipulation of content as possible. In a world where we have infinite possible outputs for our content, it’s time to move beyond tools that rely on visual styling to convey semantic meaning. If we want true separation of content from form, it has to start in the CMS.

Learning JavaScript

Thoughts on How to Learn JavaScript properly.

I’ve tried following JavaScript tutorials before, but I usually found them too focused on lectures or too heavy on practical exercises with little information on the why’s and how’s. I could never seem to find a good balance in any tutorial I worked with. But about a month and a half ago I stumbled onto a post on javascriptissexy.com entitled “How to Learn JavaScript Properly”. I decided to do as suggested in the tutorial and follow the steps exactly as they’re outlined. It was only about a week and a half ago that I purchased the second book, but my impression so far has been really positive. I’ve learned more in the past two weeks about JavaScript then I have in the previous two years combined. It’s coming down to 3 main points: following directions, taking the time, and having persistence.

Web page optimization tips

How to lose weight in the browser

And what if we got together a bunch of experts who work on large sites to create a definitive front-end performance guide?

And not just one of those boring guides made for robots, what if we did something fun? What about getting together Briza Bueno (Americanas.com), Davidson Fellipe (Globo.com), Giovanni Keppelen (ex-Peixe Urbano), Jaydson Gomes (Terra), Marcel Duran (Twitter), Mike Taylor (Opera), Renato Mangini (Google), and Sérgio Lopes (Caelum) to make the best reference possible?

That’s exactly what we’ve done! And we’ll guide you in this battle to create even faster sites.

Zeno Rocha, project lead.

Excel VBA error handling

I’ve been playing with test driven development lately which has lead me into error handling in general and in vba specifically.

Stackoverflow:

Microsoft Excel VBA Programming – Lesson 26: Error Handling

A very interesting thread on an access forum especially down thread where there is a discussion and sample code for a stack pop/push routine.

Error Handling and Debugging Tips and Techniques for Microsoft Access, VBA, and Visual Basic 6 (VB6)

Why do we even care?  Excel’s role in the London Whale debacle.

 

Someday I’ll setup my own Linux server…

My First 5 Minutes On A Server; Or, Essential Security for Linux Servers

Server security doesn’t need to be complicated. My security philosophy is simple: adopt principles that will protect you from the most frequent attack vectors, while keeping administration efficient enough that you won’t develop “security cruft”. If you use your first 5 minutes on a server wisely, I believe you can do that.

Any seasoned sysadmin can tell you that as you grow and add more servers & developers, user administration inevitably becomes a burden. Maintaining conventional access grants in the environment of a fast growing startup is an uphill battle – you’re bound to end up with stale passwords, abandoned intern accounts, and a myriad of “I have sudo access to Server A, but not Server B” issues. There are account sync tools to help mitigate this pain, but IMHO the incremental benefit isn’t worth the time nor the security downsides. Simplicity is the heart of good security.

and also:

First 5 Minutes Troubleshooting A Server

Back when our team was dealing with operations, optimization and scalability at our previous company, we had our fair share of troubleshooting poorly performing applications and infrastructures of various sizes, often large (think CNN or the World Bank). Tight deadlines, “exotic” technical stacks and lack of information usually made for memorable experiences.

The cause of the issues was rarely obvious: here are a few things we usually got started with.

Web Standards Project (WaSP) 1998 – 2013

Our Work Here is Done

By Aaron Gustafson | March 1st, 2013 | Filed in WaSP Announcement

Thanks to the hard work of countless WaSP members and supporters (like you), Tim Berners-Lee’s vision of the web as an open, accessible, and universal community is largely the reality. While there is still work to be done, the sting of the WaSP is no longer necessary. And so it is time for us to close down The Web Standards Project.