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Free or Open Source Google Map Alternatives

Google Maps Alternatives

Google Maps is a basic web mapping service application and technology provided by Google.Created by Google
Google Maps for your Website are Great but Google has introduced Billing, meaning that you will need to open a Billing Account with them (with Credit Card etc) so they can bill you once you reach a certain amount of hits to the Map you have on your Website. Most small Websites will not have to pay as you will need to reach a certain amount of hits but you will STILL need a Billing Account, otherwise the Map will NOT display correctly anymore.
More Details about that are here.

Here are some free Alternatives you could use instead of Google Maps.

  • OpenStreetMap
    • OpenStreetMap (OSM) is a collaborative project to create a free editable map of the world.
    • OpenStreetMap is a project aimed squarely at creating and providing free geographic data such as street maps to anyone who wants them. It is a free editable map of the whole world. It is made by people like you. It allows you to view, edit and use geographical data in a collaborative way from anywhere on Earth.
  • MAPS.ME
    • Fast, detailed and completely offline maps for mobile devices Created by My.com
    • MAPS.ME offers the quickest offline maps of all the countries of the world. Travel with full confidence: wherever you are, MAPS.ME addresses all your offline mapping needs.

      Need a map of London or a map of New York? A map of Paris or Rome? Any country, any place, from the largest cities to small villages, in MAPS.ME!

  • OsmAnd
    • Global mobile map viewing and navigation for online and offline OSM maps Created by OsmAnd team
    • OsmAnd is a map and navigation application with access to the free, worldwide, and high-quality OpenStreetMap data.
      Enjoy voice and optical navigator, viewing POIs (points of interest), creating and managing GPX tracks, using contour lines visualization and altitude info (through plugin), a choice between driving, cycling, pedestrian modes, OSM editing and much more.
  • Leaflet
    • Leaflet is a modern open-source JavaScript library for mobile-friendly interactive maps. Created by Vladimir Agafonkin
    • Leaflet is a modern open-source JavaScript library for mobile-friendly interactive maps. It is developed by Vladimir Agafonkin with a team of dedicated contributors. Weighing just about 28 KB of JS code, it has all the features most developers ever need for online maps.
      Leaflet is designed with simplicity, performance and usability in mind. It works efficiently across all major desktop and mobile platforms out of the box, taking advantage of HTML5 and CSS3 on modern browsers while still being accessible on older ones. It can be extended with many plugins, has a beautiful, easy to use and well-documented API and a simple, readable source code that is a joy to contribute to.

  • Qwant Maps
    • Qwant Map, still in alpha, is designed to be an alternative to Google Maps, based on OpenStreetMap Created by Qwant SAS
    • Qwant Map, still in alpha, is designed to be an alternative to Google Maps, based on OpenStreetMap
  • Marble
    • Marble is a Virtual Globe and World Atlas that you can use to learn more about Earth: You can pan… Created by KDE
    • Marble is a Virtual Globe and World Atlas that you can use to learn more about Earth: You can pan and zoom around and you can look up places and roads. A mouse click on a place label will provide the respective Wikipedia article.
  • uMap
    • uMap let you create maps with OpenStreetMap layers in a minute and embed them in your site. Created by OpenStreetMap.org
    • This nifty OpenStreetMap project lets you create maps with OpenStreetMap layers in a minute and embed them in your site.
      * Choose the layers of your map
      * Works in your browser, even on mobile
      * Add POIs: markers, lines, polygons, heatmaps, …
      * Manage POIs appearance, colours and icons
      * Manage map options: display a minimap, locate user on load…
      * Batch import geostructured data (geojson, gpx, kml, osm…)
      * Choose the license for your data
      * Allow users to search your data
      * Free uMap
  • TransforMap
    • There are Plenty of Alternatives. TransforMap makes them visible.
    • TransforMap works towards an online platform for you to visualize the myriads of alternatives to the dominant economic thinking on a single mapping system.

Hassle-free WordPress Setup

Setup a new WordPress website with our hassle-free full-service install package.

How Much Is It?

  • € 79.00
  • What’s Included:
  • WordPress Theme Install
  • Front Page Demo Content
  • Social Media Buttons
  • Google Analytics Hookup
  • Documentation

What are the steps?

We will setup a theme of your Choice on your WordPress website for your blog or business. In the case of a Free WordPress Theme we will download, unzip and install it for you, if you prefer one of the many commercial themes you need to buy it first and then send it to us or we can buy it for you and then install it.
If you’re new to WordPress or don’t have the time to learn all of the ins-and-outs, we’ll get you up and running — hassle-free.

Step 1: Install the theme on your WordPress website.

Step 2: Setup the homepage of your website like the theme demo.

Step 3: Setup  your social media links.

Step 4: Setup an SEO plugin and prep your site for Google Analytics.

Step 5: Enjoy your new WordPress website!

What if I need more help?

If you need more than a basic theme install, contact us.

Benefits of Single Page Websites

Single page designs have the following advantages over multi-page sites:

  • No page refresh when navigating the site (content is either in the page or loaded using Ajax)
  • User experience can be improved because navigating through content is quicker and more responsive than having to go to a new web page
  • Easier maintenance because you only have to maintain one web page
  • You can design for quality over quantity — instead of having to design multiple page layouts for different types of site content, you can focus on just one solid and high-quality design
  • Your Google PageRank applies to the whole site
  • Higher core content density for search engine spiders
  • Distinction from most other websites; single page websites are less common, and can thus leave an impression on your site visitors (and that’s why they are popular on portfolio sites)
  • Easy solution for simple “brochure” sites that serve one product (i.e. iPhone app) or one purpose (i.e. a designer’s work)
  • Preferred solution for web apps designed for the Mobile Web
  • Most likely cheaper than Multi Page Websites

Is Single Page Websites for You?

The truth is that whenever you implement a specific design pattern, chances are that you will not be able to please everyone. While single page sites can be made to be 100% accessible and highly usable, there will be situations where a single page site is not a good option for you. For example, an e-commerce site such as Amazon.com wouldn’t be able to pull off a single page web design successfully because of its vast amount of content — and that’s fine because it’s better when these types of sites are multiple pages.

The great thing about the web is that it’s constantly evolving, and by principle, the way we build our designs will mould itself to these shifts in our audience’s tastes and needs.

The need for lightweight, compact, self-contained websites and web applications due to the Mobile Web will only increase the deployment of single page websites. All single page layouts can be made to look totally unique. While not to everyone’s taste, they are well worth a consideration in your web design projects.

PawFriends – Pet Shop and Veterinary Theme

Petfriends Homepage

Where Pets Come First!

Need a new site for your pet center or veterinary clinic? Here’s the ideal theme made just for that, & it answers to the name of PawFriends.

Introducing PawFriends, your new online pal who’ll help you build a pet shop or veterinary clinic website with total ease. Designed for all types of pet care online presentations, PawFriends will enable you to build a website that you’re going to love like your own pet!

Key Features Colorful and Fun Style, Three Color Styles, Modern Elements, Shop, Wishlist, Quick View
Ideal for: Pet Shops, Veterinary Clinics, Pet Sitters and Dog Walking Services, Dog Grooming Salons, Animal Shelters

Available Layouts:

Default HomePage Layout
Animal Shelter
Veterinary Home
Pet Sitting Business
Pet Shop
Grooming Salon

Plugins and modules included

Contact Form 7 – A neat, clean and professional way to create your contact forms. Fully compatible with this simple yet very practical plugin.
Slider Revolution – Display your content in a beautiful manner! Bundled for free with the theme is the remarkable Slider Revolution Responsive plugin.
WooCommerce – Get your online store up and running in no time thanks to the full compatibility with the astounding WooCommerce plugin!
WP Bakery – Easily add & rearrange elements on your pages. One of the best drag-and-drop page builder plugins around comes bundled for free.
WPML – You can create multilingual websites with total ease. Fully compatible with the practical WordPress Multilingual plugin.

Eight (small) ways to reduce your IT Carbon Footprint

Internet Carbon Footprint

Whether it’s from doing things like burning fossil fuels through driving, cranking up the furnace or grilling a steak, we are all responsible for releasing carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, which is called our carbon footprint. When we collectively produce more carbon than the planet can absorb, the extra CO2 contributes to climate change. Even less obvious daily activities add to our carbon footprint, such as using the internet.

If you are like me and spend a lot of time or even the WHOLE day online, you are contributing in some small way to releasing some carbon dioxide.

While the internet’s data is essentially invisible, it is processed and stored in massive data centers all over the world. Those data centers are powered 24/7, just waiting to send information — videos, podcasts, music, news, memes, messages and everything the internet offers — to our digital devices. All that data that we’ve grown accustomed to having fast at our fingertips along with our always-on mentality ends up contributing to our digital carbon footprints.

Measuring our individual impact isn’t easy, but you can take steps to reduce it. Here are eight things you can do:

1. Adjust power settings

Set your computer to go into sleep or hibernate to conserve energy when you’re taking a break. Shutting down your computer and turning off your monitor and printer altogether when they’re not in use will save even more.

2. Lower your monitor brightness

A tip from Harvard Law School’s energy manager suggests that dimming your monitor from 100% to 70% can save up to 20% of the energy the monitor uses. Plus, lowering brightness reduces eye strain.

3. Turn on strict tracking protection

Data tracking services gobble up mountains of information. On nearly every single website you visit, data about you was transmitted to dozens or even hundreds of companies. Firefox now comes with Enhanced Tracking Protection, which protects you from the pervasive tracking and collection of personal data by ad networks and third party trackers. Setting your preferences to the Strict setting will block most data transfers and processing. That also equates to less energy being used, though some sites may break.

4. Download instead of stream

Streaming music and videos adds to your digital carbon footprint, according to at least one researcher. Opting to download rather than stream means you’ll pull the data from the server only once. Some streaming services do a better job of mitigating their impact than others, according to the Click Clean Report from Greenpeace.

5. Reuse your searches

It turns out that a good deal of search queries — the things you type into a search engine — are navigational, meaning you’re not necessarily looking to find something so much as you are looking to go somewhere that you’ve already been. An example would be that you search for twitter.com to go to your Twitter feed. Using search rather than simply going to the site sends the information from your browser to the search engine servers for data processing before returning a list of search results to your browser.

That processing contributes to your digital carbon footprint, but there is another way: the Firefox Address Bar, AKA the “Awesomebar”. Just start typing in the address bar and the autocomplete drop-down will show matching web pages from your browsing history, open tabs, sync’ed web pages, as well as pages you’ve bookmarked or tagged. Instead of processing a search, you can hop directly to your destination, and that will bring your search carbon footprint to nil.

6. Block video autoplay

Playing videos uses more energy, so why not nip it in the bud by stopping videos you don’t necessarily even want to watch from playing in the first place. The latest Firefox blocks videos with sound from autoplaying by default, and coming in September you’ll be able to block video autoplay as well.

7. Offset your digital carbon footprint

Ecosia is a search engine that funds tree planting from the profit it makes through online searches. In fact, Ecosia estimates that Firefox users have planted 20,000 trees, offsetting up to 960,000 pounds of carbon emissions per year. Way to go, Firefox fans! Learn more about how to calculate and offset your carbon footprint at Carbonfund.org.

8. Get bored

That’s right. Instead of turning to your phone every time you have a minute, daydream, people-watch or listen to life happening around you instead. Not only will you do a good deed for the environment (albeit a tiny one), you’ll do a good deed for your brain. You might find a bit of brilliance in your boredom.

Short of a large number of us unplugging altogether, none of these steps will take a giant bite out of your digital carbon footprint, but they’re a start. Remember when we didn’t recycle, turn the water off when brushing teeth, let it mellow when yellow or compost food waste unless we were farmers? Small actions today can lead to bigger changes in the future.

This article first published on TechRadarPro.

Debunking one of (many) Facebook Scam Posts

News Feed Is Not Limited to Posts From 26 Friends

Copy-and-paste memes on Facebook — those blocks of text posted on message boards, forwarded in emails and shared via social media — are as old as the internet. A recent example started popping up in late 2017 and continues to see the occasional bump in shares. This meme claims that Facebook’s “new algorithm” is limiting the number of people whose posts show up in your News Feed, usually pegging the number at just 25 or 26 people. Readers are directed to comment on the post, which will supposedly “bypass the system” so that their posts show up in the future, and then copy and paste the text on their own Feeds.(Also called “click-jacking”)

Here’s one example of the meme, debunked by the Washington Post:

How to avoid hearing from the same 26 Facebook friends and nobody else:
Here is a post explaining why we don’t see all posts from our friends….
News feed recently shows only posts from the same few people, about 25, repeatedly the same, because Facebook has a new algorithm.
Their system chooses the people to read Your post. However, I would like to choose for myself, Therefore, I ask you a favor: if you read this message leave me a quick comment, a “hello”, a sticker, whatever you want, so you will appear in my news feed.
Don’t just “Like”, Facebook requires a “Comment”. Even one word! Thanks!!!
Otherwise Facebook chooses who to show me and instead I don’t need Facebook to choose my friends!
Do not hesitate to copy and paste on your wall so you can have more interaction with all your contacts and bypass the system. That’s why we don’t see all posts from our friends!

Though multiple publications have debunked this meme, it continues to persist. So, to clear things up: No, Facebook does not set a limit on the number of people whose posts are shown in your News Feed.

“The idea that News Feed only shows you posts from a set number of friends is a myth,” says Ramya Sethuraman, a product manager who works on ranking. “The goal of News Feed is to show you the posts that matter to you so that you have an enjoyable experience. If we somehow blocked you from seeing content from everyone but a small set of your friends, odds are you wouldn’t return.”

However, the persistence of the “26 friends” myth is understandable.

That’s because the posts in your News Feed are ranked in the order we believe you’ll be most interested in seeing them. The News Feed algorithms prioritize posts that are predicted to spark conversations among people, whether because of format — for example, live videos tend to lead to more discussions than regular videos — or because the posts were shared by people, groups or Pages you interact with frequently.

Because of this, it’s possible that you’ll see content from a similar list of posters at the top of your News Feed, which can make the “26 friends” idea seem plausible. If you scroll down, though, you’re likely to see posts from an even wider group of people.

Similarly, while leaving a single comment on a post won’t suddenly “unblock” you from showing up in your friends Feed (because there’s no arbitrary limit in the first place), there’s a grain of truth here, too. If you frequently trade comments with a friend, their posts are likely to be shown higher in your News Feed than posts from someone you never interact with.

If you want to control what you see in your News Feed, there are more straightforward ways to do it than by sharing memes. Because we know we don’t always get it right, we’ve built and are continuing to build new controls so that people can directly tell us what they want to prioritize, take a break from or get rid of. If you want to make sure you see everything from a certain person, you can use the See First feature to put that person’s posts at the top of your Feed. If you’ve heard too much from someone, you can Un-follow them. If you just want to take a break from someone, the Snooze feature removes them from your News Feed for 30 days.

Accept Payments on your WP Website

Recurring Payments

Accept any kind of Payments (once off , recurring etc) on your Website for physical Products, Downloads or Subscriptions.

Trying to figure out how to accept recurring payments with WordPress?

Recurring payments are awesome for your bottom line because they guarantee money coming in every month (or week…or whatever interval you want!). But their recurring nature also makes them a little bit more complicated to set up in comparison to one-time payments.

There are plenty of options when it comes to how to accept recurring payments with WordPress. And in this post, I’m going to share four easy solutions to help you start accepting recurring payments in no time.

Whether you want to use PayPal, Stripe, or an entirely different payment gateway, you should be able to find what you need on this list.

And, while you certainly can use these recurring billing for any type of repeated payment, these solutions will let you put your clients’ recurring maintenance payments on autopilot.

1. WP Simple Pay – Easy Recurring Stripe Payments

A good option if…you just want an easy way to accept basic recurring payments and don’t need broader eCommerce functionality.

As the name suggests, WP Simple Pay is a simple way to start accepting recurring payments via Stripe.

If you’re not familiar, Stripe is a popular payment gateway that makes it easy to accept credit card payments (or other methods) with competitive fees (2.9% + $0.30).

One of the big perks of WP Simple Pay is its ease of use. Through its own streamlined interface and the Stripe interface, you get access to a really beginner-friendly recurring payments solution.

As of the latest version, you’ll first create a subscription product in the Stripe interface, which makes it easy to:

  • Choose the currency
  • Choose the price
  • Set the billing interval

Wp Simple Pay WordPress Plugin

Then, once you add your pricing plan in the Stripe interface, you can select it in WP Simple Pay and easily embed a button/form on your WordPress site.

Here’s an example of what your subscription option might look like:

Wp Simple Pay
And you can also view the live demos here.

While there is a free version of WP Simple Pay at WordPress.org, you will need the $99 WP Simple Pay Pro Business plan for subscription payments.

2. WooCommerce Subscriptions – Recurring Payments On WooCommerce

A good option ifyou need more control over your subscription payments, either in terms of payment gateways or functionality.

WooCommerce is the most popular WordPress eCommerce plugin, as well as the overall most popular platform to build an eCommerce store.

While it has all the functionality needed to create a full eCommerce store, you’ll also find plenty of people using it in a more targeted fashion. One example of that more targeted fashion isrecurring billing!

If you stack the paid WooCommerce Subscriptions plugin on top of the core free WooCommerce software, you can create special WooCommerce “subscription” products that let you create both simple and complex subscription offerings:

WooCommerce Subscriptions
There are a few benefits to this approach. You:

  • Get access to the huge number of WooCommerce payment gateways (more details here)
  • Can get pretty creative with your subscription products. You can even stack on other WooCommerce plugins, like the WooCommerce Product Add-ons extension.
  • Can set up recurring payments for other plugins, like a membership plugin for membership sites or an LMS plugin for eCourses.

The potential downside, though, is that you have to install the entire WooCommerce plugin. So if you just want to create a few basic subscriptions, that’s a lot of features and code that you don’t need.

Overall, a good approach is to make something simple like WP Simple Pay your first stop. But if that doesn’t do it for you, using WooCommerce and WooCommerce Subscriptions will give you access to more flexibility.

The WooCommerce Subscriptions plugin starts at $199 for use on a single site.

3. WordPress PayPal – Easy Recurring PayPal Payments

A good option ifyou just want a simple way to accept basic recurring payments and don’t need broader eCommerce functionality.

WordPress PayPal is another simple option to accept recurring payments on WordPress. It’s a lot like WP Simple Paybut for PayPal.

It’s really easy to use…

First, you add your email address and currency in the plugin’s settings:

WordPress PayPal Plugin

Then, you can use shortcodes to create a subscription button. For example, here’s what the shortcode for a basic subscription payment looks like:

All the shortcode options are documented on the plugin’s page.

All you do is add that shortcode to the post or page where you want your recurring payment to appear. Then, the Subscribe button will appear:

WP PayPal Plugin
Wp paypal plugin

Beyond being easy to use, another nice benefit of this method is that the plugin is 100% free.

4. Easy Digital Downloads – Recurring Payments for WordPress Add-on

A good option ifyou need more control over your subscription payments, either in terms of payment gateways or functionality.

Like WooCommerce, Easy Digital Downloads is a full eCommerce platform, though it leans more towards digital products than WooCommerce.

With the paid Recurring Payments add-on, you can create digital products with automatic recurring payments.

With this approach, you get many of the same benefits as using WooCommerce. That is, you can:

  • Choose from a variety of popular payment gateways, including Stripe, PayPal, 2Checkout, and Authorize.net.
  • Integrate with other Easy Digital Downloads add-ons to create more customized subscription products.
  • Connect to other types of plugins to create recurring payments, including most popular membership plugins or LMS plugins.

So if you’re going to go the eCommerce route for recurring payments, why might you choose Easy Digital Downloads over WooCommerce?

I think the main benefit is that Easy Digital Downloads is a bit more lightweight and streamlined because it focuses exclusively on digital products (which is what most recurring payments are). But the downside is that you lose access to the huge marketplace of third-party WooCommerce extensions.

If you want to accept recurring payments with Easy Digital Downloads, the Recurring Payments WordPress add-on is $199. A better option, though, is to purchase the Extended Pass, which also costs just $199 and includes the Recurring Payments add-on as well as all the available payment gateways.

Start Accepting Recurring Billing Today!

And there you have it – four easy ways for you to start accepting subscription payments with WordPress.

If you just want a simple solution, your best bet is to go with WP Simple Pay for Stripe or WordPress Paypal for PayPal.

And for more complicated recurring payments, an eCommerce plugin like WooCommerce or Easy Digital Downloads might offer a bit more functionality.

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