Microsoft’s Azure cloud platform will be the brain for their future autonomous robots!

Autonomous Robotic Systems are paving the way for the future, sometimes literally. Everywhere, it seems, new autonomous robots are cleaning the gates of airports and taking our orders at restaurants. Robots are managing real-life situations for the very species that created them, a major technological upheaval, which Microsoft, paired with their Azure cloud computing platform, is helping to move forward. Mohamed Halawany’s Microsoft Azure Robot design was recently recognized by Behance for its intricate render and friendly, futuristic personality.

Depending on what each situation needs, Azure, will compute real-time in the robot in order to deliver help with speed and without any latency. Azure is run by Artificial Intelligence that provides users with a customizable space to work, save, share, and connect through multi-functional, serverless software. Halawany’s robot renders for Microsoft Middle East, mimics the physical disposition of a human being, but operates through AI on a serverless, scalable platform. The main screen on Halawany’s rendering of a robot is the classic homepage for Microsoft users: a grid, lined with applications and software analytics, that organizes all a user might need in order to put the functions of an autonomous robot to use.

The potential and capabilities of autonomous robots change with different users’ needs. The robot’s operating system adheres to each individual’s inquires and predicts how each user might interact with AI technology based on previous use. The cloud program, Azure, offers cross-platform collaboration, real-time speech translation, face-tagging analytics, voice-identification capabilities, and diagnostic monitors that take care of software trouble, among other features. This technological adaptation to distinct human needs is a result of detail-oriented software development that is ever-changing and expansive with consistent use. Additionally, the exterior of Halawany’s robot is customizable according to the user’s preferences. In a world that will soon prioritize the development of AI-technology, the creativity in design that brings software and impressive technology into focus will be what bridges emotion with robotics. Check out Mohamed Halawany’s render on Behance and scroll through the photos below.

Designer: Mohamed Halawany x Microsoft

PDF, Printed Document, or Portfolio Website? What works the best for job applications?

Hey I’m Sam and I do design. Some of the most popular YouTube videos I make are about portfolios and tips on getting a design job. For that exact reason, I wanted to write about portfolios here so I can share this information with you.

Sharing your work as a creator can be a daunting task, especially if you’re attempting to summarize solving a complex problem that took 6 months to define, and 6 months to develop the solution. In situations like this, it’s important to remember that the reader (your recruiter) must understand the project at face value as they’re speed-browsing through hundreds or even thousands of job applications. I make a point in my videos to flick through portfolios as fast as possible when first looking at them, with no time to read the headings or the body text. This reflects exactly what happens in industry, even if it does appear unfair to the designer on the other side of the portfolio. This is also the reason why each portfolio should be tailored to the job you’re applying for. For example, a red carpet set designer won’t be interested in seeing the baby walker that you designed (true story, I didn’t get that set design job).

Every employer will have different application specifications. My current job still asks for a PDF portfolio from students. We ask for them because we can archive them, and pull them out if we have a specific project that the specific designer can help with. And if they supply a completely different type of portfolio? Well, it unfortunately shows they can’t follow employer instructions. Next!

Beyond specific employer instructions, how should you show your work? There honestly isn’t one perfect be-all-end-all format. There are pros and cons to all of the solutions, so let’s run through some of them now to help you decide which is best for you.


A personal website is a great way to show creativity and give the impression of a professional and well established designer. The pages and layout are also a showcase of how you think and organize information, and the format of a website means you can have multiple types of projects that your potential employer can choose to look for, or choose to ignore if they don’t suit the particular role available (just like a baby walker or set design). A personal website is great for these reasons, IF it works. The problem I personally had with my first portfolio website, especially as a student, was that it was expensive to keep it running. It came to the point where I needed to choose between renewing the website domain, or eating that week. I chose the latter. That meant that any potential employers that I had given my website details to now couldn’t find me if they had a project that would suit my talents. And even if they could find me through the email address I also gave them, a broken website gives a horrible impression anyway.


A PDF document is a traditional method by today’s standards. They lack the fancy animations that websites can have, and they need to be emailed around and stored locally. However, this can also be seen as a positive point, as each portfolio can be tailored to include only the most relevant project for maximum impact with employers. Having a PDF that pinpoints the exact type of projects that the employer needs help with shows that you are capable not only of the design work itself, but also understand the company’s needs and shows how you can help. If a website is a great place for employers to come and choose what they’re interested in, a PDF is a great way for you to show that you understand what they need.
However, dealing with file sizes and compression can be the difference between a 500mb monstrosity, and a file that’s pixelated beyond recognition. This is the final hurdle of a PDF document, and one that many designers trip on. A sensible file size is 5mb-10mb, and there are ways to compress your document while keeping the image quality high. I have a YouTube tutorial on that very problem!


A physical copy leaves the most impact on a potential employer. In a world where everything is increasingly digital, it seems that providing a beautifully made book always provides that “wow” moment. There is just something about turning each page to reveal the next piece of information that is so satisfying, and the physicality of it often means that I would flick through a book slower than I would a PDF.

However, there are of course drawbacks with a physical portfolio. They are expensive. Very expensive. And it’s almost impossible to tailor each portfolio to include the exact projects specific to the job at hand. I’ve seen workarounds with binders and replaceable pages and projects, but that gets even more expensive.
In addition, while books are suited to archiving and being stored, they don’t possess the magical “search” feature that PDF’s and websites have. In 6 months time if I have a project that a designer could help with, and I can only vaguely remember that their work was in a book (and definitely can’t remember their name), then it takes a lot of effort to go searching. The effort I might spend searching could easily be re-assigned to finding a new designer with similar skills, even if the “wow” factor of the book was so nice 6 months ago.


Community websites like Behance are more stable than personal website, but they also bring attention to the competition and their design work. While it’s very easy to plug in your images and copy into the pre-existing templates with fancy animations, it’s also true for every other designer on that website. The very nature of these types of sites mean that they make it oh-so easy to click through to find more designers and more work.

It could work in your favor by showing your projects are better than the competition, or it could show other designers and their work as well. You can rest safe in the knowledge that your links are going to work for as long as your project is on the website, but is it worth also potentially exhibiting the competition too?


It may be a catch-all cliche, but I do think it’s best to have a mix of portfolio types up to date at all times. It’s really important to be able to provide a current portfolio at any given moment as you never know when the next opportunity can come along. The best plan of action is often to use two or more types of portfolio for the same submission. PDF portfolios plus physical or website is also common. Remember, if specified, always listen to the employer’s instructions when it comes to formatting. Beyond that, a portfolio is a reflection of your mindset and your creativeness. The more creative you can be with a portfolio, the better. But don’t forget what a portfolio is used for once it’s left the drafts folder on your computer and out in the real world: it should be to the point, tailored, archive-able, and searchable. Oh, and don’t forget the “wow” factor.


Sam Gwilt is an industrial designer with an eclectic mix of skills. He graduated Brunel University London and worked for Paul Cocksedge Studio, specializing in bespoke lighting installations and exhibitions internationally. He now works with clients globally at consultancy Precipice Design, and also runs an Instagram Page and YouTube channel – Sam_Does_Design – where he shares industry tips with the community.

Adobe to offer $9.99/month Creative Cloud subscription for a limited time

Adobe to offer $999month Creative Cloud subscription for a limited time

Adobe announced today that, for a limited time, it will offer a $9.99 per month subscription package to Creative Cloud as a part of its Photography Program. Naturally, there are a few caveats involved: the offer is available only to existing Creative Suite customers who own Photoshop CS3 or above and sign-ups close on December 31, 2013. The low price tag won't get you the full Creative Cloud treatment; the Photography Program will grant you access to the diet version, which includes Photoshop CC, Lightroom 5, Behance ProSite access and 20GB of storage space. It's a smart move on Adobe's part, considering that the company has been fielding complaints from disgruntled customers over its subscription pricing model. You'll have to wait until September 17th for the offer to go live, but the good news is that the $9.99 monthly rate isn't an introductory price, therefore it won't increase so long as your account remains active. For more info, check out the source link below.

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Via: TechCrunch

Source: Adobe

Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 5 now available for $149

Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 5 now available for $149 with Smart Previews and more

Adobe teased us with a Photoshop Lightroom 5 beta at the start of the spring, and it's closing out the season by releasing the finished goods. Mac- and Windows-based shutterbugs can download the completed image management app today, either at no extra charge through a Creative Cloud subscription or $149 for a stand-alone version ($79 for an upgrade). Buyers get the same core updates no matter how much they spend, including an Advanced Healing Brush for removing objects and Smart Previews that let travelers leave their original files at home. Behance publishing is also part of the revision. When Lightroom is free to try for a month, it likely won't hurt to grab a copy at the source link -- especially if your photo collection is growing out of hand.

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Source: Adobe, Richard Curtis' Blog

Adobe acquires Behance, sets sights on community-driven Creative Cloud

Adobe acquires Behnace, sets sights on communitydriven Creative Cloud

Well, it looks like Adobe is wrapping things up nicely before the long holiday weekend. Mere days after the most recent round of updates, the software outfit has just announced its acquisition of Behance, the online portfolio community for creatives in a number of disciplines. Founded in 2006 by CEO Scott Belsky, they NYC-based outfit will remain it's current location and retain all of its 32 current employees. Touting over 1 million active users and 90 million project views in the past month, Behance is an online repository for portfolios, feedback, inspiration and the hiring of creative pros. Adobe is planning to fully integrate the design community's wares into it's Creative Cloud arsenal "allowing members to seamlessly create content, seek feedback, showcase their work and distribute it across devices." For now, there won't be any changes for free and paid members of the Behance offerings, but Adobe is evaluating how to integrate the paid portions into Creative Cloud memberships with the free option from the community remaining as such. Head on past the break to take a gander at the full announcement.

Continue reading Adobe acquires Behance, sets sights on community-driven Creative Cloud

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Source: Behance, Adobe