As usual, we've had another busy week here at the Lab. We've been reading the latest books and blogs, playing with the latest tools, and attending some cool events. Plus, we're happy to have launched the BlogPotomac site in support of the social media event that's going down on Friday the 13th of June. Hope you can make it. Without further adieu... Steph’s post touched on Sonia Simone's Copyblogger article that highlights how users are more easily called to take action with decisive content. Steph is all about having copywriters involved when trying to entice readers to take action, but she adds that clients must first decide on just a few calls to action for users, saying, "Ultimately, it’s better to make some assumptions that can be corrected later about what users want rather than slapping seventeen callouts in the right sidebar and hoping one sticks. And when it comes to getting from Point A to Point B, who wants to find a fork—or seven—in the road?" Samantha reviews Ellen Lupton's new book, Graphic Design: The New Basics, which she says is now her "new design fundamentals go-to guide." She says the book is refreshingly simple amid other design books out there that are overly complex or dated, so she thinks designers of all skill levels would find it a valuable resource. P.S. See what else is on Samantha's bookshelf. Clinton tells us Why Google App Engine (GAE) matters, saying, "I can run web applications on Google’s grid and have access to their authentication and back-end data store? Sign me right up!" He notes that critics won't jump onboard because of GAE's limitations, but says those restrictions can provoke creativity and inspire enhancements. We're interested in provoking creativity and enhancing our own work here at Viget, which SP discusses in his post, “Open Source, Take Two." We're aiming, kind of like Google, to facilitate creative discussion by pulling back the curtain and making some of our code publicly available and asking other to contribute to what we're working on; that way, we can all learn something while we collectively contribute to the progress of the larger Rails community. Trace reviewed the Potomac Tech Wire Internet Outlook Conference he attended on Thursday morning. Speakers like Scott Frederick of Valhalla Partners, Laurence Hooper of Loladex (one of our clients), and Chris McGill of Mixx all contributed to a positive discussion about the growing tech community in the DC area, from how to obtain venture funding to how to grow and implement an idea in today's technology market. Thanks for all the super dialog in our blogs, and we hope to see you next Thursday at DC's Tech Cocktail 2. Have a great weekend!