bjorn-vandervoo-2014Hi, I'm Bjorn van der Voo, I'm a webmaster, digital champion, and marketing manager based in Portland, Oregon.

Formerly focused on magazine and trade publications, my work has evolved into web publishing strategies for a broad range of clients. My four main focuses are webmaster services, digital marketing, project management, and print publishing.

I help businesses with a range of services in the digital realm, from content creation to web system setups to marketing outreach. I can also help identify emerging revenue streams and foresee ways to keep processes flowing long after my work is done.

My plain-speaking manner enables me to work with a wide variety of clients and make complex projects look simple.

BLOG POSTINGS AND MUSINGS

Today's a good day... to be a design nerd

For too long I've been putting up with a pesky problem exporting PDFs out of InDesign CS5.

As some might know, with CS5, InDesign got rid of the bar that y'know, shows you it's busy making a PDF.

However, it was still busy making that PDF. Oh sure, you could shove a box around or something, but if you tried to y'know, actually get work done, it would drag you back, like a demon into the mouth of hell.

Try to switch to a different app for some work? Nope, InDesign will just grab back the focus, and there you are, interupted.

Try to save and close the document? Nope, now it gives you a message saying, "hey, just wait, I'm busy making a PDF," like y'know, it could've done in the first place.

I churn a lot of small PDFs out of InDesign, so any lag is precious minutes dripping into hours and hours wasted.

Well finally I couldn't take it anymore and after 17 minutes of sleuthing, I discovered this. Someone far cooler (and nerdier) than me discovered than you could create a workaround to disable the PDF-making as a background process.

Now the friendly old "Hey sit tight, I'm making a PDF" message is back, and I swear it's faster at making that PDF as well.

I figure I'll make back those 17 minutes (+ the 3 for this post) in about one business week. Oh, what a good day...

Deciphering Your Own Work

Occasionally, in the modern web dev workplace, you have to set aside a certain project. Perhaps it hasn't been sold in a while, and it's time to work on it again. Wonderful!

But sometimes there's that strange moment, when you're looking at your own handiwork, and it's like, "wait... whaaat? How did I do that again...?"

To use a very strained and obscure comic book analogy, it's like in Locke & Key when they use the Head Key and look in their own heads. Like this:

headkey

Ugg Boot Spam!

I was overjoyed today to learn that the infamous comedian Patton Oswalt has to deal with Ugg Boot comment spam as well.

Something about this makes me all warm and fuzzy. I'll carry it with me the next time I'm dealing with the midnight barrage of Chinese slave-labor comment posters. No, I don't need a loan!

Clash of the Twitter accounts

Here's an interesting article about Twitter account ownership. As someone who creates new social media accounts, it's an interesting question of who, in the end, truly owns the account. In my current situation, the status is very clear that the account ownership defaults to the company. However read on and you'll see that in the account in question, the person who created, maintained and grew the account had a heavy-hand in its entire existence.

Work goals

Like most people, I have work goals. Most of mine, however, aren't mandated or hinted at or quotas. They're more along the variety of "hey-wouldn't-it-be-cool-if" and then my imagination fills in the blank.

That blank can range from "cut costs on that digital expense" to "come up with a system that XYZ" or "get a better, newer, yet cheaper office thingermajig."

When I hit these goals, some of the time it gets recognized, but occasionally, it's just me at my desk, going 'oh yeah, that worked out.'

I think I need to get an electronic bobblehead of a Mexican futbol announcer. When I whack it on the head, it'll go "gooooooooooooooaaaaaaaaaallllllllllllllllllllllllllll" for about 10 minutes. Then everyone will know.

Work goals:

1. Kindle Fire app

2. More digital packages