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Showing posts from October, 2008

The Nature Blog Network

I really enjoy reading about nature and at times actually leaving the deep dark den in which I live to venture out to my back yard to photograph birds, trees and bugs.  Sometimes when I feel really adventurous I take the dogs and my binoculars to the park so the we can enjoy the beauty and the sun.

But when I cannot get out of the house, I like to read books about nature.  But today, rather than a book, I tootled about the academic section of a blog network and happened upon a site called "Teach Me About Bird Watching!!!".

Now this is kind of a novel idea.  Rather than profess expertise about some topic such as birding, the author of this blog invites others to send her information which she then posts.  But when I tootle, I don't stay long, so on this blog I found a link to another kind of blog network called the Nature Blog Network.  You can create an account and submit your nature blog listing under one of ten topics:
BirdsEcosystemFloraHiking & OutdoorsInsects &am…

Power Your Wordpress with Wordpress Power Pack

I love to blog and I love blogging with Wordpress.  I even host my own Wordpress blog at GoDaddy.  But as with so many other blogging systems, Wordpress, when it comes to themes, is just as frustrating.  The default themes are just okay and the CSS and HTML code can be hacked so that something more attractive can be created--this assumes you have those skill.  But if you don't like the defaults you'll have to search about for something more attractive.  After that you'll probably want to make money with your blog, which will entail more research and more frustration.  If only there was something powerful, with everything you need, and easy enough for a beginner to use.  Well, there is.

Wordpress Power Pack is a powerful, flexible and easy to use set of Wordpress themes and plugins that provide you with: 
Over 100 of the Most Useful Wordpress PluginsAn Auto Content GeneratorSuper Adsense Wordpress Themes that feature
Advanced SEO TitlesA Flexible Navigation MenuClickbank-Read…

Embed a Digg Widget in Each Post

I user and I wanted to add a Diggwidget to each of my posts,  and while searching I came across one of the best tutorials on this.  At the Tips for New Bloggers blog, there is an article called "Add Digg button to Blogger or Blogspot". What I like about this article is that it takes you step by step through the process, and shows a screen shot of the layout screen to a particular blog as well as the code snippets you need to do this.  I definitely recommend doing this if you want people to digg your posts.

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Small Business: Scrapbooking

My wife and I have decided to purchase an established small business that specializes in scrapbooking supplies.  We have applied for a home equity loan rather than a small business loan because a small business loan has a higher interest rate and you need to pay it back much sooner.  You can get up to a fifteen year home equity loan, but I think a small business loan requires you to pay it back no longer than five years. 

The store does make a profit and has had an increasing profit every year after it had been purchased by the current owner. But I wonder.  Although the YTD gross earnings  are higher than last year, I am worried that with the drop in the market, sales might suffer.  But I have also heard that the government is encouraging small business.

The only thing I know about scrapbooking is what little I've learned from my wife who has been scrapbooking for more than six years.  She's currently employed at the scrapbooking store and the owner thinks that my wife would …

Meaningless Blog Labels: "Ramblings"

Many times while searching through online blog catalogs (e.g. BlogCatalog) I find blogs with titles containing, in some mix of phrase, the word "rambling", as in "My Ramblings" or "The Ramblings of [insert name here]".  Some blogs even suggest that their contents both "ramble" and "wander", as in "My Ramblings and Wanderings." I don't know here whether the author meant to create a blog to discuss his aimless walks, or if the author meant to advertise that his blog is about the drivel that escapes the nether reaches of his mind to wind up as text in his blog.  Either of these is bad, but the second one is worse and oftentimes is the correct assumption.

Given the huge number of people essentially living their lives online (their body's virtually tethered to their laptops and iPhones) and writing about it, I would expect to find a lot of garbage, and so I do, and while not surprised I am dissapointed.  But if I am going …

Clancy's Book Picks

I love books, and you can read a bit about my feelings for books on my new Clancy's Book Picks blog.  For each entry I include a picture and link to a book that I've read or am reading, and I write some bit of commentary about the book--or about something related to the book.

Now, I could certainly just enter on Amazon comments or reviews about books, but I like the personal touch of making my words about books entirely my own.  And for selfish reasons (gratuitous plug), each book is linked to my Amazon Store.  Should you find any of my book picks interest and if you have some money, why not go to my store and buy it.  Or if nothing else, just leave me a comment.

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Twitter, Britney and Obama

This morning, and I think this is because I listen to TWiT in the background, I subconsciously went to twitter and started following Britney and Obama.  What's interesting is that if you follow Obama, you will automatically be followed by Obama's Twitter.  And what's also cool is that Obama has more that 100,0000 followers.  I don't think that McCain has a twitter account.  He probably doesn't even know what this new fangled interner thing is all about.  But I could be wrong.

McCain does have a web site, and on the front page is a video that begins to play.  I don't like that sort of thing.  I want to push play when I want to play it.  Many times I'll be listening to a podcast (TWiT) and when I click to a sight like this, it clashes with the podcast.

Okay.  So this post is really boring.  But I like to put pictures in my posts and so here you go. 

Oh, if you like this kind of insipid banter, go to twitter and follow me.  There you'll get the concise k…

Chasing Flies

On one day not too long ago I heard a clamoring at my front door.  When I looked I saw Sydney, with fierce determination, jumping against the screen, barking and nipping at something just out of reach.  I didn't see what it was, and I thought that perhaps she had become rabid or that she'd lost her little canine mind.

I stood there in the hallway fascinated.  And without warning, she darted past me and slammed her tiny white self against the back door and continued her frantic antics.  Then she was off to the kitchen; same thing.  Then back to the front door, to the back door, to the kitchen, etc.  And when she finally stopped I saw her sniffing at, tossing about, licking and chewing a house fly. It appeared to me by her reaction to tasting it that she didn't care for it, but this didn't stop her from ripping it to pieces and swallowing it.

As for insecticides and fly swatters, we no longer needed them.  We had, if not always successful, our very own pest control.  And …

Get Your Mask On at Holloween Adventure

It's that time of year when the leaves turn color, the weather begins to chill, and the sweet scent of Autumn permeates the air.  It's also the time when children don costumes of all sorts, scurrying, with bags in hand, about the neighborhood seeking sweet treats.

Holloween is one of my favorite holidays and as it approaches, my wife and I had planned, as we do every year, to try and shop at those seasonal Holloween costume stores.  And no doubt, as with every other year, we will be left empty handed, finding nothing we like or finding something cool only to discover that it's out of stock.  So thinking about Holloween this year, I decided to check out online holloween costume sites and came across the coolest site of its kind that I've seen.

From superheroes to supervillains and snow white to storm troopers, at Holloween Adventure, the Masters of Masquerade, you'll find these and hundreds more.

This year my wife and I want to go to our family Holloween party dressed…

eHow: A Cool Way of Telling the World What You Know

In my never ending search for really cool things, I came across a site called eHow that claims to be the site that informs you on "How To Do Just About Everything." They provide a free site where you can browse for answers to your questions, and if you're knowledgeable in something (or a bunch of things), you can write and post your own articles.  In this blog entry I will be concentrating on writing, my favorite pastime. 

How does it work?  As with any other site that allows you to create an account, you create an account.  Then you add your profile information.  Once all this is done, and it only takes a minute or so, you can start posting how-to articles.  The process for creating an article is simple and walks you through the four steps: Get Started, Add Article Steps, Categorize It and Publish It.

Here is a brief description of each step:

Get Started

In this step you create a title for your article, add an optional image and image credits (you want to do this to ackn…

My New Toolbar

Today while pondering my fate and my dwindling savings, I asked myself... "self?  how do I make money using this internet thing?"  My answer, as it always is, was "I have no clue."  This can be said about me in many different contexts.  But having been a computer junky since the early 80s, a computer science student in the 80s/90s, and, up to this point, a profession programmer, you would think that having a clue would be a no-brainer.  But alas, I am, as I said, clueless.  So what does a clueless person do when he wants to get clued in?  I can almost hear everyone shouting... he Googles! 

It's not that I haven't tried this before, and it's not like I haven't gone blue in the face telling people to stop turning nouns into verbs, but today I came across something that made me smile.  I found Conduit, makers of free browser toolbars. No coding, no complicated install process... just creat a toolbar from a ready-made template, add a bunch of cool gadg…