Integrate Google Web Fonts selection into your apps

We’ve received lots of requests from developers for a dynamic feed of the most recent web fonts offered via Google Web Fonts. Such a feed would ensure that you can incorporate Google Web Fonts into applications and menus dynamically, without the need to hardcode any URLs. The benefits of this approach are clear. As Google Web Fonts continues to add fonts, these fonts can become immediately available within your applications and sites.

To address this need, we’ve built the Google Web Fonts Developer API, which provides a list of fonts offered via Google Web Fonts. Results can be sorted by alpha, date added, popularity, number of styles available, and trending (which is a measure of fonts growing rapidly in usage). Check out the documentation to get started.

Some developers have helped us test this new API over the last few months, and the results are already public. Take a look at TypeDNA’s photoshop plugin as well as Faviconist, an app that makes generating favicons as simple as can be, and Google Web Fonts Families, a list of Google Web Fonts that have more than one style.

We look forward to seeing what you come up with!

Posted by Jeremie Lenfant-Engelmann, Engineer, Google Web Fonts

Managed Services vs. Traditional IT Service

Traditionally, computers and printers get fixed after they are broken. Typically, while you or your staff is busy working, a problem occurs that prevents someone, or everyone, from doing their job. You place a phone call to a local IT Service provider and hopefully they are able to get out there in the next few hours, but you may have to wait until the following day...

The technician shows up and begins working on resolving the problem. In the meantime, your business is not being as productive as it should. With luck, the technician had things back together in a few hours and you get a bill for the work that was done. In most areas this will range from $100-150 an hour but could be more or less, especially if it was an emergency or priority response.

So to recap things, something on your network broke, it cost you time and labor because employees could not do their jobs and you also had to pay someone to come out and fix it. It really is a strange scenario when you think about it. Each day you hope nothing goes wrong so that you don't have to pay a technician to come out, and each day they plan on something going wrong so that they can make a living...

Why not think differently?

When you get in your car and head to work, or to the store, your car warns you of potential problems. If you're low on oil, the check oil light comes on. If your coolant system isn't doing the job the temperature light comes on. Even that old smoke detector in your basement beeps when it senses that the battery is low. Your computer systems on the other hand, they just fail with no warning and leave you scrambling for a solution.

A Managed Service Provider (MSP) is someone who thinks differently about your network. The break-fix mentality of the past is turned upside down and instead, an MSP makes money by keeping your network running smoothly. In this scenario an MSP charges a fixed monthly fee to service your network. The value of this service is far greater than simply fixing a computer when it goes down.

 A quality Managed Service Program is a proactive service, not a reactive one. This means that the smoother and more efficiently the MSP can keep your systems up and running, the more profitable they become.  Typical MSPs provider constant 24x7 monitoring of your entire network, monitor and deploy security and application patches in a safe, controlled environment, provide virus updates, maintain firewalls and user permissions and many can even monitor the amount of toner in a printer and tell you when to order.

As a business owner or manager, your overall IT costs are reduced and put into a single, manageable monthly fee. Your staff is more productive since your network and systems are healthy and maintained. Servers, desktops and network components are kept updated and security threats are significantly reduced. A recent study determined that an average business class desktop computer costs 60% less to have managed through an MSP than it does to have fixed when it breaks. Typical benefits of implementing a managed Service Program also include:
  • Lower Total IT Costs: Through a regular monthly fee that covers all preventative and proactive maintenance for client machines, total IT costs are lowered.
  • Reduced Hidden Costs and Increased Staff Productivity: Because client PCs and servers are stable and secure, with fewer disruptions or breakdowns, your staff will have more time to be productive. Additionally, incidents such as data loss, failed backups and corrupt database files can be virtually eliminated.
  • Greater IT Cost Predictability: With a fixed monthly fee that covers monitoring, preventative maintenance, and unlimited remote support, clients know their exact IT costs per month and can budget accordingly.

Not sure if Managed Services are for you? Perhaps your business is too small? Think again, Eric Goodness, Vice President of the Gartner research firm predicts that by 2014, 90% of all North American companies will be using a remote infrastructure managed service. The size of your company will directly determine the price an MSP charges, a company with 10 computers is going to pay significantly less than one with 50 computers.

If you'd like to learn more about Managed Services or if you're simply in the market for some new computing equipment, visit our website at