Tag Archives: internet

Follow Me Follow You?

Us Internet elite (oh how, I wish) have been using Twitter for a few years now.

I follow my favorite bands, celebrities, TV shows, comic writers, the a fore mentioned Internet elite (love you guys) and a few people I know from internet or IRL.

I’ll never have 100,000’s of followers and that’s fine really. Besides everyone knows it’s just a popularity contest that makes the ones from High School pale in comparison. God… if you told me twenty years ago I’d be pining for High School again I would have punched you in the face.

The idea behind Twitter (and all social media) is that if it’s done right it’s granular, organic and most of all there is transparency. You have personal investment in the other party and they in you. Like the kids say keen’ it real.

That’s why getting continually getting followed by people, organizations, companies and social media experts (they don’t get their own category so much as a special level of hell when I get a blind follow) gets me down. There’s three kinds of follows I hate a) I’ve never heard of them, b) are not relevant to me in any shape or form or c) have no idea how they even found me in the millions out there. That’s why I fell dirty knowing that they are only looking for a knee jerk follow back to bost their numb. Let me tell you this isn’t MySpace and I’m not going to thank you “for the add” with some god awful animated gif of a [add cute animal name here] doing [add some adorable act here].

There’s nothing worse than when someone blindly follows.

Thankfully, Twitter can lead to funny internet videos that only the cool kids understand…. but for how long.

Facebook Tip: Block Applications

If Moses had access to Facebook one of the plagues upon Eygpt would have most assuredly have been application notices in your news feed.

I made the off hand status update of blocking Facebook applications (200 and counting) the other day and understandably some people were wondering how such a feat was accomplished. What I think most people do is just  (myself in the past) have just unfriended (it's a real word) people to cut out the spaming of news feeds. Remeber block applications not friends.

Here are the step by step instructions.

  1. Your friends spam your news feed with applications.
  2. You click the HIDE button on the right of the notice.

  3. You can hide either all news feed notices from that person (without removing them as a friend) or hiding the particular application.

  4. The application has been hidden from your news feed.

That's one way to increase the usability of Facebook.

I'd love to know if you have you found any tips or tricks that makes Facebook more useful, like not playing Farmville. Leave a comment with your favorite Facebook tip below.

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Pownce Comes to Six Apart, Hopefully Optimistic

Okay I know this is old news, but I just never got around to putting my two cents in on the subject.

Back in December Six Apart acquired the nuts and bolts of Pownce along with it's creator Leah Culver (who is now on VOX, go add her to your neighborhood). As a user of VOX for over two years this is great news from my perspective.

Maybe we will see some innovation here on our beloved VOX .When VOX launched, it's feature set was pretty good and better than anything else I had found. Unfortunatley, it's getting long in the tooth two years on.

  • You can still only import video from YouTube (where is the support for all the other video sites?). Yes you can embed them but it is not as elegant. Plus it doesn't show up in your video libaray.
  • There hasn't been any update to the upload tool for mulitpul photos, but to be fair it does do the job adaqually.
  • Still waiting for a native application for the iPhone. I would certainly blog more if there was one. I'd even gladly pay for such an application.
  • Though I haven't seen it in a while, the dreaded white screen of nothing was pretty prevelent here on VOX in the past.
  • I really look forward to the [this is good] sections but sometimes there are really slow in updating.
    I'd recommend adding the editors to your neighborhood. News & Politics, Music, Life, Entertainment, Culture & Technology. When you find interesting stuff hit the share button (that's on every post) and send on to one of the editors.

These are really just annoyances, it's the community here on VOX that makes me stay. But it would be nice to see some of them addressed and maybe see some new features roll out.

I'm really hoping that the former Pownce team is the influx of new blood that VOX needs to get me excited about posting here again. Also if they could make it as easy as posting to Pownce or Twitter I would certainly post more, way more.

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Are You LMAO or Just LOL?

For anyone who has spent anytime at all on the internet we're all familiar with the basic emoticons; the smiley :-), and wink 😉 and the tongue one :-P.

Okay as you can tell I'm less than proficient in the emoticon department but not for long with computer-ease.com's extensive emoticon legend.

And when I say extensive, I mean extensive. The emoticons are broken down into categories such as positive, negative, animals & creatures and a host of others. It's even further broken down by IM clients like Yahoo, MSN and AIM to name afew.

If everyone had access to this excellent reference there would be considerabley less typing on the internet.

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Download Day 2008: Spread the Fox

Help Firefox set a Guinness World Record for the most downloaded program in one day this Download Day.

Firefox is a great web browser and I've been using it for years. They made tabbed browsing cool and have tons of add-ons and themes to suite every taste or need.

So give them a try. Download day starts June 17th at 10am Pacific or 1pm Eastern. You can figure out the math for Central.

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Britannica Says I’m a Web Publisher

I Twittered this week about Encyclopedia Britannica opening up the walled garden to web publishers for free and whether or not I qualified. Now either the barrier to entry is pretty low or my blog is much better than I thought because I'm in!

If you were wondering here's my take on this. Britannica even with a 237 year lead on competitors like Wikipedia, is not the first stop when you need some annotated reference material online. I'm sure that "kids today" are perfectly happy checking out Wikipedia and Britannica must certainly be worried about losing market share if not branding.

So what better way to increase your online presence than open up your service to web publishers (such as myself) that will start referencing you in their blog posts (like this one).

With Wikipedia's recent and on going shenanigans at the hands of founder Jimmy Wales, the online community certainly has not been against discussing the possibility that the collaborative online encyclopedia might be broken. Britannica might be able to get some traction here.

But Britannica has some work ahead to usurp Wikipedia as the webs first stop for all knowledge. Though Wikipedia has many omissions and contains much that is apocryphal, or at least wildly inaccurate it, scores over the older, more pedestrian work in two important respects. First, it is slightly cheaper; and secondly it has the words Don't Panic inscribed in large friendly letters on its cover.

Britannica does offer up widgets (but they do get a little cropped here on VOX) if you add it to your sidebar) on different subjects that you can embed on your site and even has a twitter feed you can follow. So if you have a site or blog and publish regularly why don't you see if you qualify for a free subscription.

Britannica Widget

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Us Too!

Living in Canada sometimes you just go without the luxuries our neighbours to the south enjoy. No, not Mexico the other one.

Over the years names like Old Navy, Starbucks, Taco Bell and Best Buy have made their way north. And we have rejoiced. Well except Taco Bell, that stuff goes right through me.

But with the good must come the bad (like Taco Bell). It's called traffic shaping. Internet Service Providers (ISP), like Rogers & Bell (well that's pretty much it I'm afraid) are deciding what has priority on their network and degrading your service that you have payed for.

Amber Mac – Net Neutrality in Canada

ISPs say that demand for network bandwidth is out stripping supply, but instead of building out their networks and upgrading service (which they should be doing anyway) they have decided to throttle the internet.

In my opinion the ISPs have painted themselves into a corner by promising customers a certain (high) speed that they can no longer guarantee if everyone actually uses the service at the same time. Here are some examples for perspective. Imagine the electric company downgrading your service during peak hours for fears of brown outs. Or if your city ran out of water in the morning because everyone was having a shower before work. What if your phone only worked sometimes due to lack of lines? There would be huge outrage right? People would demand the level of service that they are paying for and these utilities would be held accountable.

The truth is ISPs don't throttle or pack shape to safe guard the integrity of their networks. They don't want you downloading content because they offer television or downloadable services themselves and you'd be cutting into their margins.

I love eventually getting everything the United States has. Us Too!

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New Gmail Chat Features

Gmail has rolled out group chat and emoticons and who cares.

Here are the problems I foresee:

  1. Have friends who use gmail.
  2. Know that there is a chat client in gmail.
  3. Are online at the same time I am.

While I love gmail and it's ever growning storage, I think I've used the chat maybe twice since they've rolled it out.

I'm glad that they make so much cash on their core business (advertising not search) and stock that is a gazillion dollars a share that they can fail and the company survives.

Now roll out GDrive so I get some off site back up going and all will be forgiven Google.

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Goodbye Old Friend

This current Writers Guild strike feels a lot like the 1994 Baseball strike. If you were a Montreal Expos fan you'll know what I mean.

The LA Times has broken it down by network at what point you can expect your favorite shows to go into reruns. Just pretend that it's between sweep weeks and you won't notice a thing.

Those of you who are fearful of actually interacting with family members here are some alternatives to our beloved television.

Joost is now in open beta and will let you watch what you want when you want, just be sure to have a nice fat connection. And not actually want to watch everything.

Revision3 has tech centric programing but you can download the shows and watch it on that media center extender you hopefully already have. I personally have a Media Center PC with TV out.

And there's quality humor programing on Youtube.

Another route you could take is flash games on the intertubes.

Desktop Tower Defense
Gogo Happy Smile
Yahoo Free Games

Luckily or unluckily reality television will not be affected since there are no scrips and or on air talent involved in creating those show.

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