FAH Donor Business Cards - We Can Do This!

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FAH Donor Business Cards - We Can Do This!

Postby Alan C. Lawhon » Wed Dec 26, 2012 8:31 am

Last Friday I drove my foster sister to a Christmas luncheon for her Tai Chi group. (Parkinson’s patients do Tai Chi exercises to help with balance and motor functions.) My sister’s legs were not working, so I was doing my best to help her get around. As Cherie struggled to move, I couldn’t help but think how frustrated I would be if I were having to cope with her predicament. I realized in an instant: This is why we are folding!

On my drive home I got to thinking: “There has to be more we can do! There has to be some way of increasing FAH donor participation without incurring great cost.” That’s when the light came on. Here’s something that all of us within the FAH donor community can do. It will cost money, (namely the amount of money required to have a box of business cards printed), but this is entirely voluntary – the decision is totally yours.

A few nights ago I had dinner with a lady with whom I crossed paths. Naturally, this lady asked me what I do for a living? On a totally spontaneous lark, I told her a bit of a white lie. I told her: “I’m a medical researcher.” (OK, it was more like a 100 percent whopping big lie!) This peaked her curiosity, so she wanted to know more. I told her I use a computer to simulate protein folding dynamics. (Another furrowed eyebrow.) I asked her if she would like to become a medical researcher? (This really piqued her attention.) She furrowed her eyebrows again and said, “Well, I don’t know. How much would this cost?” (Now I knew I had set the hook, so all I have to do is reel her in.) I began explaining what FAH is and how she could become a medical researcher by downloading the software and letting her computer process work units. She seemed interested (or at least she listened politely) as I attempted to give a concise explanation of FAH and what the Pande Group is working to accomplish.

Neither one of us had a pen or paper to write on, so I was reduced to repeating “Folding at Home” several times and encouraging her to go on the internet and look up the web site when she got home. She seemed interested, but she told me “I’ll ask my son to help me with this the next time he comes over.” I thanked her for listening and told her I thought she would make a great protein folder. From there we went on to talking about other things.

So I’m returning home from taking my foster sister to her luncheon when it suddenly dawns on me: “What I need for these type situations is the standard communication device used by most business professionals: The business card!” Specifically, we in the FAH donor community need a carefully composed straightforward business card which spells out:

(a.) Your name
(b.) Your affiliation as a “Donor Participant” with Stanford’s Folding@Home distributed computing project.
(c.) The FAH home page: http://folding.stanford.edu/English/HomePage
(d.) Your local phone number and email address (optional)
(e.) Your folding ID moniker (optional)
(f.) Other important information I haven’t thought of (The FAH logo perhaps? See below.)

This business card can’t be too “busy” (i.e. too cluttered with details) but it also needs to convey enough information to pique a person’s interest and attract them to the web site. (I’m open to suggestions concerning how the information should be laid out and presented since I’m not a business card design expert.) I suppose the most important detail is: (c.) – the web site URL. It would also be nice if there were an easy way to get the Stanford FAH logo onto the card, but I don’t know of an “easy” way to do this. This logo:

http://folding.stanford.edu/English/FAQ-main#ntoc41

would be really impressive on your very own personalized FAH business card.

I’ll be very grateful for any and all comments (i.e. constructive criticism) along with suggestions on how best to design the card and present the information. I’m thinking, in order to save space and maximize “real estate” on the card, options (a.) and (b.) should be combined into a single line since print on a business card is generally small and space is limited. I’m not sure about option (d.) although it might be a good idea to have a way for a new donor to contact you in case they have a question about the software or an issue comes up that they need help with. Option (e.) should probably be deleted since your own personal folding ID is not vital information on a business card of this nature. Taking all these factors into consideration, a personalized FAH business card might appear as follows.

The FAH logo would appear (centered) at the top of the card. Immediately below the logo would appear your name with the following text and description.

Alan C. Lawhon – Donor Participant in Stanford Medical School’s “Folding@Home”
distributed computing project. The goal of the Folding at Home project is to study
and better understand Protein Folding Dynamics and computational biology in order
to fight debilitating diseases such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s disease, influenza, the
HIV virus and numerous forms of cancer.

Web Site URL: http://folding.stanford.edu/English/HomePage

Below this, space permitting, you might include your own local phone number (in the lower left-hand corner of the card) and your email address (in the lower right-hand corner of the card) as a local point of contact. (If the front of the card is too crowded with the above information, your local phone number and email address can be printed on the back of the card – or not printed at all – depending on your own personal preference.)

I’ll be very grateful for input from folks in the Pande Group as I don’t want to step on any toes or do anything that is not legal or causes a problem. That’s why I’ve decided to use the term “Donor Participant” in lieu of “Medical Researcher” on these business cards. I’m also concerned about use of the logo and whether that would be a problem with Stanford’s legal affairs office. Before I go to the expense of having cards printed, I want to make sure I pass muster with all concerned.

A direct-to-the-point (well thought out) business card containing basic information would be easy to pass on to potential new donors. (Hopefully such a card will at least pique interest since one doesn’t run in to a “business card” like this every day.) If you carry five or six of these cards with you in your wallet (or purse) at all times, you’ll be able to pass a card (or even 2-3 cards) to a potential donor you might meet or strike up a conversation with. (I keep thinking if I had a card like this a few nights ago at the restaurant, that lady might be our newest folder.) You might want to carry ten cards with you at all times – just in case a potential donor says “Hey, I know a bunch of folks at work who might be interested in this! Do you have extra cards I could give away?” Better yet, if you can speak to a large group of potential donors, you can pass cards out to each person in the group and they will automatically have the web site URL. After I get my cards printed, I intend to try and arrange a large meeting with the local Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s Support Groups, the local AIDS Action Coalition, and local cancer patient support groups. If I can get a meeting arranged with several hundred people in attendance, that would be great! I intend to get several hundred (make that several thousand!) new folders donating CPU cycles to FAH if it’s the last thing I do.

It will cost money out of your own pocket to get FAH business cards printed, (and this is a totally independent decision for each member of the FAH community), but I would guess it can’t cost more than $100 to $200 max to get a box of 1,000 cards printed. If you settle on buying 1,000 cards, I would think the cost/card should be in the neighborhood of 10-12 cents per card – since you are buying a bulk quantity – although the Stanford FAH logo could add several cents to the overall cost per card since the logo is a color graphic. (The positive about the FAH logo is that it will, or it should, attract peoples’ attention. The negative is the amount of space it will take up on the card – plus the extra cost – so it’s a tradeoff.) Whatever the case, I can’t imagine the cost being greater than 15 cents per card for an order of 1,000 cards. Maybe somebody reading this has more knowledge and expertise concerning the printing of business cards and can offer a more accurate cost estimate.

I’ve given this quite a bit of thought. I can’t think of a more “cost efficient” way of publicizing FAH and drawing attention to the web site. It seems that the key to this is getting people to the web site. If they go to the trouble of typing the URL into their browser, if they show that degree of interest, there’s a good chance they’ll download the software and start folding.
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Re: FAH Donor Business Cards - We Can Do This!

Postby art_l_j_PlanetAMD64 » Wed Dec 26, 2012 9:02 am

Hi Alan, great idea about the business cards!

But you don't have to go to a company to have them printed, anyone with a color printer (isn't that everyone?) can print their own.

I use a program called BusinessCard Studio from Summitsoft, here is the link:
BusinessCard Studio

You can get the blank business cards at Staples/Business Depot, a box with 250 of the "matte white" blank cards is their item number 610381.

Creating and printing your own business cards is easy, cheap, and fun!

Please let me know what you think. Thanks!
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Re: FAH Donor Business Cards - We Can Do This!

Postby Alan C. Lawhon » Wed Dec 26, 2012 10:30 am

art_l_j_PlanetAMD64 wrote:Hi Alan, great idea about the business cards!

But you don't have to go to a company to have them printed, anyone with a color printer (isn't that everyone?) can print their own.

I use a program called BusinessCard Studio from Summitsoft, here is the link:
BusinessCard Studio

You can get the blank business cards at Staples/Business Depot, a box with 250 of the "matte white" blank cards is their item number 610381.

Creating and printing your own business cards is easy, cheap, and fun!

Please let me know what you think. Thanks!


Art:

A quick question. Assuming Stanford and the Pande Group allow me to use their logo on my card, does this BusinessCard Studio software allow you to capture a small graphic image from a web site and insert the graphic into a card you are designing? (I assume the answer to this question is "Yes," but I just want to make sure.) Unless four boxes of matte white blank cards are prohibitively expensive, this looks like the way to go - although I'll have to find a relative or friend who has a color printer. (It's going to be an adventure - for me - learning how to use the software ...)

Thanks for tipping me off about the software. BTW, the computer I have crunching WUs has an AMD "Athlon" 64-bit CPU. My baby is a little old and outdated though - it runs around 2.5 GHz and only has 2 GB of RAM. (Most of these i7 multi-core SMPs probably run circles around my dinosaur.) :)
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Re: FAH Donor Business Cards - We Can Do This!

Postby art_l_j_PlanetAMD64 » Wed Dec 26, 2012 11:15 am

Alan C. Lawhon wrote:Art:

A quick question. Assuming Stanford and the Pande Group allow me to use their logo on my card, does this BusinessCard Studio software allow you to capture a small graphic image from a web site and insert the graphic into a card you are designing? (I assume the answer to this question is "Yes," but I just want to make sure.) Unless four boxes of matte white blank cards are prohibitively expensive, this looks like the way to go - although I'll have to find a relative or friend who has a color printer. (It's going to be an adventure - for me - learning how to use the software ...)

Thanks for tipping me off about the software. BTW, the computer I have crunching WUs has an AMD "Athlon" 64-bit CPU. My baby is a little old and outdated though - it runs around 2.5 GHz and only has 2 GB of RAM. (Most of these i7 multi-core SMPs probably run circles around my dinosaur.) :)

Hi Alan,

Yes, you can "import" any image you want, the features of BusinessCard Studio are shown in the link, please read the section "Business Card Studio Features".

Here is the text from the web page:

--------------------------------------------------------

Business Card Studio Features

Business Card Studio is the easiest way to create & print professional business cards! Business card software makes it incredibly easy to create professional looking cards and print with a variety of options that deliver professional results.

10,000+ Business Card Designs: Choose a template for any industry or create your own design, millions of possibilities!

750 TrueType® Fonts: : Includes professional, high quality fonts

5,000 + Objects & Backgrounds: Professionally designed for any industry or interest

Matching Letterhead & Envelopes: Creates matching letterhead and envelope concepts based on your business

Special Effects: Create unique eye-catching results with shadow, blur, frame and emboss techniques

Preview before You Print: Business Card Studio (boxed version) offers free smooth-edge business card paper to print your concepts or final cards so you can see exactly what they’ll look like before you have them professionally printed

Step-by-Step Wizard: makes business card creation simple and straight forward; no need to take design classes or learn complicated commands

Easy Editing: Once you have decided upon a business card concept, Business Card Studio allows you to put all of the finishing touches on your new card, ensuring perfect results:

- Adjust colors & transparency
- Add logo-like graphics
- Apply special effects
- Maintain precise alignment
- Rotate, scale and flip text or graphics
- Outline, projective and circular text
- Insert and edit shapes
- Import pictures into text or graphics
- Add background images and colors
- Full layer control of your card design

Export for Professional Printing: Easily export your cards in the most popular file formats to send to a commercial printer. Business Card Studio supports most common file formats including JPEG, BMP, PNG, EMF, WMF, TIF, GIF, ICO & PDF formats up to 1200 dpi.

Works with Avery Card Stock: Or you can simply enter custom sizes for other stock
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Re: FAH Donor Business Cards - We Can Do This!

Postby uncle fuzzy » Wed Dec 26, 2012 12:26 pm

You can print business cards with Word, including adding a picture/logo.

Office 2000 Professional
Tools>Envelopes and labels>Labels tab>click on label picture in lower right corner>scroll way down the size choices
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Re: FAH Donor Business Cards - We Can Do This!

Postby art_l_j_PlanetAMD64 » Wed Dec 26, 2012 12:46 pm

uncle fuzzy wrote:You can print business cards with Word, including adding a picture/logo.

Office 2000 Professional
Tools>Envelopes and labels>Labels tab>click on label picture in lower right corner>scroll way down the size choices

That's good to know, but if Alan (or anyone else) does not have Office or Word installed, the BusinessCard Studio program is an inexpensive option.
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Re: FAH Donor Business Cards - We Can Do This!

Postby proteneer » Wed Dec 26, 2012 5:36 pm

Stanford has very strict policies on usage of their insignia, name, and logo. Though the FAH logo may be up to our discretion, but we need to be careful about representation here.
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Re: FAH Donor Business Cards - We Can Do This!

Postby Jesse_V » Wed Dec 26, 2012 5:59 pm

FYI: The logo on the F@h Wikipedia article (in the upper right-hand corner) as well as the green protein graphic are both in the public domain. Remix at will.
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Re: FAH Donor Business Cards - We Can Do This!

Postby bruce » Wed Dec 26, 2012 9:29 pm

Alan C. Lawhon wrote:A few nights ago I had dinner with a lady with whom I crossed paths. Naturally, this lady asked me what I do for a living? On a totally spontaneous lark, I told her a bit of a white lie. I told her: “I’m a medical researcher.” (OK, it was more like a 100 percent whopping big lie!)...


It's not as big a lie as you think it is. For future reference (and for the business card idea) all you really need to do is add an adjective or two that will distinguish you from a professional medical researcher. Consider that you could more accurately say "I'm a volunteer medical researcher." or even maybe "I'm an amateur medical researcher."

The unmodified "medical researcher" was a lie, as you suggest, but once you add the adjective, you're admitting that the unmodified version isn't accurate but you've left plenty of room to pique her interest and leads to the same "Say more" type of discussion that should follow along the same lines that it apparently did.

A similar statement might be "I do volunteer work doing medical research for Stanford University" but that's getting too cumbersome to get the conversation headed in the right direction.
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Re: FAH Donor Business Cards - We Can Do This!

Postby Napoleon » Wed Dec 26, 2012 10:59 pm

I really like the idea, but personally I'd be a bit wary about casually introducing myself as a volunteer/amateur medical researcher:
-I'm a "volunteer medical researcher".
-Been taking pills you really shouldn't be taking, "Mr Party Animal"?

Oh well, it could still lead to a beneficial conversation where FAH gets some positive word-of-mouth advertising. It's just that some people have an imagination which quickly leaps to worst case scenarios... :ewink:
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Re: FAH Donor Business Cards - We Can Do This!

Postby Alan C. Lawhon » Thu Dec 27, 2012 12:57 am

proteneer wrote:Stanford has very strict policies on usage of their insignia, name, and logo. Though the FAH logo may be up to our discretion, but we need to be careful about representation here.


proteneer:

Thanks for responding. This is exactly why I posted my (rather lengthy) piece of writing. Before I have even one business card printed, I want to make sure I am in the clear with both the Pande Group and Stanford University over the use of their logo. I'm not going off half cocked and printing 1,000 business cards only to get a letter from Stanford's general counsel informing me that I must cease and desist. I would like to use the FAH logo since that is an attention grabber. That graphic will likely pique prospective donors' curiosity and prompt questions - which is exactly what we want! However, I'm not going to use that graphic unless and until I have clear and unambiguous permission. I haven't been sued or threatened by a lawyer in all of my 57 years - and I don't intend to start now. :)

I'm also concerned about how much "explanation" and information I'm placing on the card. Right now, I have a [tentative] design that features a graphic and 5-7 lines of text. That's probably too much - for a business card. It's going to be interesting when I get down to the nuts and bolts of the actual card. I want to convey enough information on the card to pique peoples' interest and get them headed to the web site, but I have a limited amount of "real estate" to work with. Right now I'm afraid the card design is too busy, so I'll have to work on that.
Last edited by Alan C. Lawhon on Thu Dec 27, 2012 3:30 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: FAH Donor Business Cards - We Can Do This!

Postby Alan C. Lawhon » Thu Dec 27, 2012 1:33 am

Napoleon wrote:I really like the idea, but personally I'd be a bit wary about casually introducing myself as a volunteer/amateur medical researcher:
-I'm a "volunteer medical researcher".
-Been taking pills you really shouldn't be taking, "Mr Party Animal"?

Oh well, it could still lead to a beneficial conversation where FAH gets some positive word-of-mouth advertising. It's just that some people have an imagination which quickly leaps to worst case scenarios... :ewink:


Napoleon:

That's exactly what I'm worried about - and why I've spent quite a bit of time thinking about the design of the business card and the precise wording that should be used. This has to be done just right.
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Re: FAH Donor Business Cards - We Can Do This!

Postby Alan C. Lawhon » Thu Dec 27, 2012 4:23 am

Back on April 25th in the "Discussion: what is holding F@h back?" thread, Dr. Pande posted as follows:

PS Regarding "Why isn't F@h at the 100 petaFLOP level already?" –– I think that's a good question. If we can get 100,000 newish (~2 years old or less) GPUs, we'll be at the 100PFLOP level. That's why I put GPUs at such a high priority.

I'm about to devote serious effort to enlisting new donors and new volunteers from here in my local area. (I have the good fortune of living in an area with a substantial population of engineers and technical professionals as well as a good size college population. There are quite a number of potential donors.) While it would be a fantasy to enlist 10,000 new donors from a population of around 300,000 people, I would think (hope) that reaching two or three thousand new folders is achievable. Since most of the new donors I hope to enlist will own relatively inexpensive "consumer grade" PCs in the $600 to $1,000 price range, how many of these type machines would be needed to get us up to the 100 PFLOP level? If myself and 100, 200 (or a thousand!) other members of the FAH community print up business cards and manage to bring in a couple of thousand new folders each, will that get us up over the 100PFLOP threshold?

I just had another thought with this business card idea. I don't know how many homo sapiens (as in real live human beings) are involved in FAH as donors. (I suspect there are more machines/CPUs/GPUs crunching away on WUs than there are owners of those machines - plus a lot of those machines are SMPs that are running as many as four cores on a chip.) Anyway, I'm going to "guesstimate" that there are between 50,000 and 100,000 donor participants worldwide. Since only a very small fraction of the FAH community reads (and posts) to these forums, the vast majority of the FAH community may be unaware of this business card idea. Since the Pande Group obtains all of our email addresses when we register and download the software, maybe a mass email to the entire FAH community urging people to print their own customized business cards promoting FAH might be in order. (Consider doing a mass email and link this thread.) If the FAH community is greater than 100,000 members and just one percent of those folks print up (and start distributing) cards, there's a good chance we can fly right past the 100 petaFLOP threshold.
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Re: FAH Donor Business Cards - We Can Do This!

Postby k1wi » Thu Dec 27, 2012 8:35 pm

The issues I have with the business card proposal is the average punter won't want their GPU lagging or unexpectantly finding their power bill shooting up (at least without warning)... Also I'd hate you to end up looking like the guys fanning out business cards on the Vegas Strip.

A lot of consumer computers will be discrete GPU-less and frequently laptops.
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Re: FAH Donor Business Cards - We Can Do This!

Postby bruce » Thu Dec 27, 2012 9:13 pm

For the casual donor that might join by reading the business card or by hearing about FAH from a Hollywood star, we need a way to get them to run SMP, not GPUs. SMP/Uni folding doesn't provide as many GFLOPS, but it is amazingly close to 100% painless and has virtually no impact on the casual folder. GPGPU programming still has a number of "cutting edge" issues that should be solved that would tend to discourage that casual folder.

The installer needs some changes to how it decides on the default settings before these ideas are "clean." A brief high performance installation followed by a disgruntled donor who installs after a week provides less science than a lower performance option that keeps folding forever.
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