Wednesday, June 30, 2010

New Customer Relationship Management Software

Reflect CRM Software is the newest program to join our line of business software. So what better time than to take a look at customer relationship management?

Why CRM is a Valuable Business Tool?
CRM, or Customer Relationship Management, is a way of consolidating all of the information you have about your customers, clients and leads. By keeping customer information in a single centralized location, it is easy to get a complete picture of your relationship with any given customer right when you need it. You can use this data in a variety of ways to help you make better informed decisions that can help increase customer satisfaction and loyalty, as well as generate cross sales.

For example, you can use reports to help look for correlations between products certain types of customers might purchase together or upgrade to over time. Or you might use the software to remind you to follow up with a customer and see how a recent purchase is working for them. Any of these applications of CRM software can increase sales and customer retention, and improve your ROI on marketing campaigns with better targeted efforts.

Introducing Reflect
All of this is what Reflect CRM Software can bring you and your business. It has an easy to use interface for storing and organizing information on all of your customers. You can set reminders for meetings and events, and generate reports to help you build stronger relationships with your customers. With Reflect, your business will move past just making transactions and you’ll start to see more connections, opportunities, and conversions.

Reflect Customer Relationship Management Software

So if you have a small business be sure to try out Reflect for customer relationship management. Best of all, Reflect is completely free, making the benefits you get from stronger customer interaction even more attainable. Talk about a strong return on investment.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

TempoPerfect Metronome Software is Now an iPhone App

TempoPerfect iPhone Metronome ScreenshotMetronomes are essential for keeping time, improving practice sessions, and for developing a consistent rhythmic feel.

For a long time, NCH Software has offered TempoPerfect metronome software free to musicians, providing a clear and precise beat on their PC, pocket PC or smartphone. TempoPerfect is now also available for the iPhone, giving musicians one more way to stay on the beat wherever they go.

TempoPerfect has a highly accurate, and easily adjustable tempo that won't wind down like older mechanical metronomes. You can set the correct beats per minute (BPM) for any tempo, using the BPM tempo guide for reference. Additional features allow you to subdivide beats to hear tricky patterns like triplets, or accent the first beat in a measure when working in difficult time signatures.

We're pleased to make TempoPerfect even more accessible to musicians everywhere. And if you like TempoPerfect you should also check out our other software for musicians.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Let's (re)Make Parisian Love
How to reproduce Google's 2010 Super Bowl Ad

How to remake the Google Super Bowl ad with video tools from NCH Software

If you were one the millions of people who tuned in to watch the Super Bowl this past year, there’s a good chance you saw the Google ad, “Parisian Love”. If you haven’t, well, now’s your chance…

Google Parisian Love Super Bowl Ad

The simple concept set it apart from other Super Bowl ads, making it one of the more memorable commercials to play that night. Equally simple is the execution – with the right tools, anyone can make a similar ad. Here’s how:

Video Recording Your Google Search
The first thing you need is Debut for video screen recording. Once Debut is installed, click the aptly named “Screen” icon in the toolbar, and you’ll notice the stage on the program switches over to a mirror image of your computer screen. You’ll also notice a variety of options along the bottom, which let you choose which file type you want to save your video as, the size in which to capture, as well as the option to add video effects, adjust the color, cropping options and more. These options may come in handy later, but for now we can ignore them.

Set a selection area for video screen recording in DebutNow that we have our screen capture software ready, open your web browser and head over to www.google.com, and make sure to maximize your browser window. Now, head back into Debut and click the “Selections” icon in the toolbar to specify the portion of your screen to be recorded. Click the “Add Window” button at the top and select the Google browser window from the list of options. (Note: Make sure the browser window is visible on the screen or Debut won’t record it). Once we’ve squared that away, head into “Options” (in the toolbar) and on the “Devices” tab, click the box that disables recording the Debut window (eliminating the hall of mirrors effect). After that, click on the “Output” tab to choose where these recordings are going to be saved. You may want to make a dummy recording just to make sure things are functioning properly. Now you’re ready to record!

Back on the stage and with our browser window open, hit record, head back into the browser and start searching! Take your time; we’ll cut out any unnecessary parts later. The process of searching through Google may take awhile. Just keep at it with the end result in mind… All done? If so, head back into Debut and hit the stop button. This will (obviously) stop our recording.

With that out of the way, let’s head to our output folder and view our recorded movie. Watching this, you may be wondering how we’re going to separate the parts we need from the parts we don’t. To achieve the end result we want, we’re going to have to incorporate some light video editing. Enter VideoPad. Even if you’ve never edited video before, there’s no need to be scared - VideoPad is very user-friendly and is designed with the beginner in mind.

Cutting Your Recorded Video Down to Size
With VideoPad installed and opened, the first thing we’re going to do is import our recording by clicking the “Add Media” icon in the toolbar and navigating to where the file is saved. Click “Open” to import the footage and you’ll see that the file now appears in your Media List. Click on the file, and it will immediately appear in the Clip window (the bigger of the two windows on the left). This window acts as a preview window – here you can set in/out points, view the timeline and save files. For now, let’s select the footage from the Media List and drag it onto the first empty area under the windows; this is the Video Track timeline and is where we’ll be doing our editing to remove any unwanted sections.

VideoPad main screen editing navigationYou should now see a thumbnail preview of your video in the timeline. Underneath the video, you’ll see audio waveforms in the Audio Track section. When you import any video media that has audio attached, they’ll be linked (meaning you can’t edit them separately) until you tell the program otherwise. You can do this by right-clicking on the waveform and selecting “Unlink Sound Clip(s)”. Now that the audio is separated, select just the audio and hit “Delete,” removing the audio from the video. Don’t worry; we’ll be replacing it with our own audio later.

We now have one long video track that needs to be cut down to size. Before we begin cutting, it’s important that we familiarize ourselves with the timeline marker. You’ll notice when you move the timeline marker, a preview of the final product appears in the right window (the Sequence Window). This is an important reference tool in which we can use to make smarter, more accurate editing decisions.

We’re going to again reference the Google ad to get a feel for what we want to keep. This way, we can start trimming the video down to size. Drag the marker to the beginning of an area that we want to omit and click “Split Clip,” located to the left of the Video Track. Now, navigate the marker to the end of the undesired area and click “Split Clip” again. Our timeline will now be segmented into three. Select the undesired clip section, and hit “Delete” to remove it. Congratulations, you have just made your very first cut and are well on your way to recreating the Google ad! This might be a good time to save your project, which you should keep doing periodically from here on out. It’d be a shame to lose all that hard work…

After making a few more cuts, hopefully you’re getting close to the look of the Google ad. When you’re done trimming the fat and are happy with your final product, the last step is adding the audio. It works very much the same as adding video. Click on the “Add Media” button once more and select a piece of music; click “Open” and the audio will be added to your Media List. Select it and, similar to the video track, drag it to the empty area in Audio Track section labeled “Soundtrack 1.” Waveforms will now be visible on the timeline, just as before. If need be, you can also move and cut the track at your leisure in the same way we cut the video. Now when you preview the final product in the Sequence Window, you’ll have audio too. Horray for progress!

Save and Share your Masterpiece
Now that your masterpiece is done, the last step is to save the movie; Click ”Save Movie” in the toolbar, and an output window will appear. From here, you can export for DVD, YouTube, portable media, etc. Select your desired format using the tabs at the top and the drop-down menus below them and click “OK” to begin the export process. It may take several minutes depending on the format and length, but once completed, your video will be ready to share with the world! Pat yourself on the back!

Congratulations, you’ve now successfully (re)made Parisian Love!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Change Video Speed in VideoPad

You've been asking for it, so I'm thrilled to report that VideoPad now supports speed variation, giving you the ability to slow down or speed up any video clips that you are editing. Version 2.10 of VideoPad video editing software added this long awaited variable speed playback control, which has been the most requested feature across any of our products.

Adjust the playback speed of video clips in VideoPad

Changing the playback speed of clips gives you more flexibility and control in creating your video masterpiece than ever before. So now, whether you’re adding a time lapse video of the creation of that magnificent sand castle you made at the beach or slowing down your child’s slide into home for an slow motion instant replay of that first home run, you have complete control of the action.
Edit: with version 2.20 the speed control was moved to be one of the effects available on the Effects Tab

Friday, June 18, 2010

Naming New Software Programs

Coming up with names for new software products has become a never ending challenge. We've recently introduced several new applications including Bolt PDF printer, Doxillion document converter, CardWorks business card designer and, most recently, Reflect CRM Software. And there are three more programs in development that are still waiting to be christened.

The name of a product is only one piece of the branding puzzle, but deciding on a name is an important step that influences the box design, webpage, and sometimes even the product's interface. So choosing a solid name for a new product is both an exciting and sometimes daunting project, and with so many exciting new products coming through lately, we are slowly turning this naming process into an art form.

After the specs for a new software product have been outlined, the developers give the marketing team a run down on what the new program will do and its key features. I use this information to paint as clear a picture as I can of "Audio Joe," or "Entrepreneur Jack," who is chomping at the bit waiting to buy the new software. Describing not only the target market, but getting a firm grasp on who the customer is and the solution that the software will provide them, is an important step to helping decide what the personality of a product should be.

This is where brainstorming begins. We always at least consider names with 'Express' and 'Pad' in the name, since that is a recurring theme in many of our product names, and sometimes those suggestions spawn lots of laughter as we come across all of the silly and strange words that you can append 'Pad' to. But I think that the laughter is a helpful step that helps get the creative juices flowing and makes a smooth transition to searching the thesaurus for synonyms of key words and feelings that sparking more ideas.

Prism Video Converter Software BoxSometimes we get the opportunity to come up with new words, or combine two ideas as in Disketch CD labeling software. Sometimes the name we decide on is single word that fits the idea or emotion of the software. For example, Prism video converter can split a video into a wide spectrum of different file formats and compressions. The word prism opens up a lot of options; the way a prism opens up white light is a very nice association for how Prism the video converter opens up video files and possibilities.

Our goal throughout is to find a name that leaves an impression with the potential user. With Reflect, we wanted the name to convey that the software gives the user an accurate impression of their clients, an idea we then try to carry to the artwork, text and broader branding for the software. When we've done the job well we usually find that by the time the product is released it is hard to think or it having any other name.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Speech Commands in IVR Telephone Systems

interactive voice response speech commands In the most recent version of IVM interactive voice response software, v5.03 added a new speech recognition feature that allows the automated system to accept speech commands in addition to key presses as responses. This gives callers added flexibility when navigating an IVR system.

IVM is a powerful interactive phone system perfect for a variety of tasks from setting up an information hotline to a voicemail system or automated attendant. We hope that users will find this new option a convenient feature in designing useful and user-friendly call flow patterns for their interactive telephone systems.

Read more about best practices in designing an interactive voice response system.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Make your own Glee Music Mash-up

Make your own Glee Music Mash-up with MixPad Multitrack Audio Mixing SoftwareIt isn't very often that I get caught up in popular mainstream televisions shows, but I have to admit that I have been completely hooked by Glee. I have really enjoyed watching this weekly musical. Waiting for the next season is going to leave a gap in my weekly entertainment that I can only hope the reruns will satisfy, but with no new episodes, maybe I will take a little time and attempt to put together my own music mash-up and mix two songs together with MixPad audio mixing software. I'm under no delusions that it will be as easy to make one seamless song out of two as they make it appear on the TV show--but with a whole summer of waiting for season two ahead, I think it might be a fun project for when the storm clouds come out. Even if the rainy days are few and far between, there should be plenty of time to get the hang of mixing two songs together.

Here are a few tips to get you started after you have chosen the songs that you want to use in your mash-up:
  • It can be helpful to have the vocals separated from the instrumental music. Try searching for a cappella versions of your songs. If you can't find a cappella versions, try using WavePad to help you extract the voice, but note this can be a time consuming step to get it right.
  • Load all of your clips in MixPad. MixPad can import audio from a wide range of formats and even extract audio from video files, so you don't need to worry about converting your audio files first.
  • You may need to adjust the pitch of one of your two songs to get them into the same key.
  • Adjust the tempo of one of your songs to match the other for a common beat throughout your arrangement.
  • Use a drum sample of one of the songs to make a tempo grid marking the beat for your mix and help you place samples of your two songs.

If any of you have put together your own musical mash-ups I'd love to hear the tracks you have put together. And if you have any tips on mixing tracks together, please share what you have learned.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Digitize Your Vinyl Record Collection



Dust off those old albums and give new life to your vinyl record favorites. See how easy it is to convert analog recordings to digital using Golden Records Vinyl to MP3 Converter, and have a reunion with your music.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Do More with Audio - Blog Carnival June 7, 2010


Welcome to the June 7, 2010 edition of Do More with Audio.


Angelita Williams presents 10 Amazing College Marching Bands On YouTube posted at OnlineUniversities.com.

Laura presents Tone Generation Software and Sound Therapy, saying, "Perhaps the most intriguing application of sound frequencies is in sound therapy. Health problems ranging from cancer to asthma, allergies to influenza can reportedly all be treated with sound therapy."

Sushant Das presents iPhoneProgramming Resource for Developers and Entrepreneurs posted at The iPhone Developer Resource, saying, "iPhone Development and iPhone Programming Resource for developers. Sign up to get daily coding tips and tricks straight from the gurus. Get free source code snippets in weekly packs. Access experts and ask them any questions or issues you are facing."
If you are interested in audio and have an iphone, you should also check out NCH Software's free iphone apps. WavePad will be available for the iphone soon, so be sure to check back for updates.

Ferrari Dude presents 50 Free Android Apps Every College Student Needs posted at Online University Reviews, saying, "Saving money is paramount in college, as most students don’t have a lot of that commodity to throw around. So, you may welcome some free Android apps that can push your productivity, creativity and communication always seem welcome."

Garth presents Creating Unique Sounds with MixPad and WavePad, saying, "I like to use MixPad to create a variety of unique sounds I can use as sound effects or to play on my synthesizer. These sound effects can be used in commercials, movies, videos, music, audio programs, or by DJs on the radio."

Pierson Group presents Agile Development- 10 Principles posted at Companies Improve ROI in Software Development, saying, "Pierson Requirement Group has trained various business analyst, corporate project managers, quality assurance managers, and professional consultants. The training format used by Pierson group includes on-site classroom training, instructor-led public classroom training, and virtual instructor-led training."


That concludes this edition. Submit your blog article to the next edition of
Do More With Audio using our carnival submission form.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Where does the time go?

I listen to a local radio station in the mornings when I am getting up and getting ready to go into the office, and I often catch their daily trivia question. The other day the question was about what the average person spends 14 hours a day doing? The answer? Sitting. We spend most of our days sitting. Sitting on the coach, in our cars, at our desk.

Employee time tracking softwareThis is a crazy statistic, and it reminded me of a conversation we had in our office recently about how much time we spend doing different things. We use one of program, FlexiServer Productivity & Attendance Software, to track the hours of everyone at NCH whether they work in one of our two main offices, or are remote testers or support personnel. And one of the things that you can see with Flexi is the percentage of your time spent in various applications. I don't remember how the topic came up but one day most of us took a look at our personal; stats to see where our time was going. Not surprising most everyone in the rest of the office had one predominant application like Visual Basic for programming. While over in marketing I personally had no application getting more than twenty percent of my time but it was fascinating to see a breakdown of where I spending time. From Outlook for email to Internet browsers and graphics applications and notepad, and lots of NCH products to boot, it was readily apparent that my days are in no way monotonous. I would have a hard time explaining my typical work day to anyone since there are almost never two days alike on my side of the business, and personally I relish that degree of unpredictability and new hurdles to overcome.

What about you? What are your days spent doing? Does one application dominate your computer usage as you spend a large chunk of those 14 hours sitting at your desk? Where does all of that time go?
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...