I have decided to share this blog post in light of a recent problem shared by a handful of our clients. All of these business minded individuals are well educated, good at their trade, and computer savvy (well enough). However, they seem to have a disconnect in understanding the difference between a web browser and a search engine. For example, Chrome is a web browser, while Yahoo! is a search engine. This got me thinking. Where did the confusion happen, why did these lines blur? This is nothing new. Since the introduction of internet to the public, surfing the web has required the use of a web browser coupled with the convenience of a search engine. So why the confusion now?
I believe the answer is in the pinnacle of branding. Before we delve into the genius of Google, let’s look at some other companies who achieved this first. I think it will help us to better understand our problem at hand.
Kleenex = Brand
Tissue = Actual Item
BandAid = Brand
Bandage = Actual Item
So the next time someone ask you for a Kleenex or a BandAid… remember that these are actually the brand name, not in fact the name of the actual item. This is what I mean when I say, “the pinnacle of branding.” These companies have marketed themselves so well that they’ve actually made their brand name and the name of the item interchangeable. Amazin’.
Another fun time that an incidence such as this happens… especially in Texas, is the almighty interchangeable term, “coke”. When one asks for a coke, they may mean a Coca Cola, or in fact, any soda available. Once again, we have the pinnacle of branding. Gorgeous.
So back to Google. While there are other search engines available on the web such as Yahoo!, Bing, MSN, and Aol, to name a few, Google is by far the most widely used. Even when questioning something, anything, the term used for searching the web for the answer is usually “Google it,” not “Yahoo! it”, not “bing it”, or “MSN it”, but “Google it.” Bravo, Google, there’s that pinnacle again. Now here’s where Google really got smart, and that’s with implementing Google into other platforms that we already use regularly… such as our smartphones and our browsers. For example, you may use Internet Explorer to access internet from your computer, but the last time you went to Google.com they asked you if you wanted to add Google to your browser… half reading half not, you click yes. Now, you can search terms actually up in the rectangle at the top of your screen and not have to go to Google.com. However, the opposite is not necessarily true. If you go to Google.com and put in a URL, you will see a list of most related domains display in your Google search… possibly even the URL you’re searching for, but you will not be immediately taken to the website you are seeking.
So, here we go folks.
A Web Browser is reached through the icon on your computer or your phone that you tap to access the internet. Examples of these include Internet Explorer, Chrome, Firefox, and Safari. When you get there you will see a search bar at the top of the page that looks like this.
This is an example of “Googling” a subject within your browser bar.
This is an example of simply heading to the domain you are looking for by inputting it into your browser bar.
This is going to Google.com and searching any subject… the old school way.
So there you have it. Google is amazing and we all use it multiple times a day. She as useful as she is ubiquitous. Just don’t be confused by all her glory. Still head to your handy old web browser if you already know what domain you are looking for. Just input that in the little box at the top of your screen and you will be taken straight there. Wolla! Mystery solved, I hope this was as interesting and entertaining for you folks as it was for me.
When we were approached by the Texas Lakes and Trail Region to create a campaign that helps to market this traveling exhibit, I was excited for the challenge. The design had to be generic enough to travel around the globe, but specific enough to describe the emotion of the subject. Research on this project was amazing, it was a great break from the service industry websites we have been working on and refreshing to dive into our history. For this design, especially, I was led by my emotions and not statistics. The Native American story is beautiful, so I wanted to make this project lovely and with truth.
“Cynthia Ann and Quanah Parker are two important names in U.S. frontier history. Much can be learned from the dramatic story of these two courageous individuals. In 1836, a Comanche raiding party took Cynthia Ann from her family.Over the following years, she became wife to a Comanche chief and mother to children, including Quanah. After Cynthia Ann was taken back by Texas Rangers, Quanah became one of the most important Comanche leaders both in war and peace. The photo exhibit tells this story of the lives of these two persons caught between two different worlds. The Lakes Trail Region views this traveling exhibit as a way to educate visitors about their lives.“
I used design elements such as a Texas map, sunset colors, and silhouetted buffalo on the horizon. However, I wanted the focus of the logo and the print material to depict the same thing, Quanah Parker. The title of the exhibit suggests he is caught between two worlds. Many of us can easily relate this to our personal lives. And, striving to find the balance between our heritage and our future is something shared by many. Also, our external appearance may show signs of years of experience, this personal battle, amongst other realities. I chose this photo of Quanah Parker, stoic and looking forward for many reasons. I illustrated the photo for the logo, and also kept it visible in the background for impact. I chose the Native American feathers purposefully to represent his heritage while giving a nod to current trends of feathers used in today’s fashions with the air of freedom. I am suggesting that we are not “caught” in two worlds, instead we are free to be part of both as well as representative of both. The font choices are for aesthetics and readability, a little vintage to pull it together and a signature type font to suggest authenticity.
If you see this exhibit in your area, I hope you will take the time to view this amazing story. As I have begun to see the design pop up in places I hadn’t expected, I am excited that I had an opportunity to work on the project. Another fun fact about this project is that we made all the materials into editable PDF’s. At first it is hard to see things changed, but its rewarding to know that communities with limited budgets now have access to modern design and have the ability to share this important story of our past.
As a photographer, it is always fun to get out of town, even if it is just down the road. There is something about seeing new scenery that brings the rush of looking though a lense to another level. Recently I went to Downtown Fort Worth with my Nikon and a 50mm 1.8 lense, to do some street photography. Here are few of my favorites: