Category Archives: Tech

Generate Your Very Own Heart Candy Messages

candy hearts

Everyone remembers those little heart candies–they’re practically Valentine’s Day staples. While I haven’t had them in quite a number of years, I do remember them fondly from all of my years of schooling, from elementary right through high school; they were always around during the month of February and perhaps they still make an appearance this time of year for some of you. However, if running out to the store is way too much trouble, especially if you’re one of the many out there who is still greeted with piles of snow and ice when you walk outside, you don’t have to venture out into the cold to get your candy heart fix.

You can now make your very own candy hearts just by typing what you want your heart to say in a little box and clicking on the color of heart you want it to be. Yet another V-Day gift you can instantly send out to your friends, families and lovers without even having to leave the computer. And if you absolutely loathe Valentine’s Day like the plague, there’s also a goth mode to create black hearts of apathy, broken hearts and rage galore!

Check out my absolutely hilarious candy hearts above and head on over to create your own.

CEO of Sun Microsystems Tweets His Resignation

Sun CEO resignation tweet

CEO of Sun Microsystems, Jonathan Schwartz, has resigned and as only appropriate for a CEO of an IT company, he went out in style, tweeting his resignation. But it wasn’t just any old tweet, it was a full on tweet-haiku. Yeah, pretty awesome.

Schwartz has officially become the first Fortune 200 boss to tweet his resignation, which isn’t too big a surprise, considering he was the first chief executive of a major company to come out with a public blog of his own. He had also pushed the Securities and Exchange Commission to treat blogs the same as press releases and filings in matters of disclosing critical business matters to investors.

The reason behind Schwartz’s resignation is said to be because Sun was recently acquired by Oracle, which acquired the company after I.B.M. had moved to buy them out, but when negotiations came to a standstill, Oracle moved quickly to grab it. In an interview conducted last week with Oracle CEO Larry Ellison, he had stated that he fully expects Schwartz to resign, rather than play a role in the new Sun/Oracle company.

While it is not well-known what is next for Jonathan Schwartz, he had stated in an e-mail that “with a few million businesses and a few billion consumers on the Web, rumor has it there are some interesting opportunities to be had.” and he is completely right; you never know what’s going to happen when it comes to an IT professional joining the ranks of the recently unemployed, but I’m sure the right company will snatch him up, perhaps a company with the same innovative ideas and mindset for the internet and blogging world.

Astronaut Mike Massimino Becomes First Person to Tweet From Space

On Tuesday at 4:30pm EST astronaut Mike Massimino upated his Twitter with:

“From orbit: Launch was awesome!! I am feeling great, working hard, & enjoying the magnificent views, the adventure of a lifetime has begun!”

The only thing that separates him from millions of other people who tweet several times a day, every day, is that Massimino tweeted from space, making him the first person to ever tweet from space. He began tweeting in April as he prepared for the mission and with more than 241,000 followers, he kept his promise to file updates from the space shuttle Atlantis as it reasies to repair the Hubble Space Telescope. Atlantis is NASA’s fifth and final repair visit to the Hubble Space Telescope.

You can follow astronaut Mike Massimino on Twitter @Astro_Mike and also Mark Polansky, the commander of the mission @astro_127.

UK Schools to Begin Teaching Twitter & Blogging

Anyone who uses the internet on a regular, or even semi-regular basis knows that the blogosphere and social networking sites have exploded. No matter what channel you get your news from, the anchor will often mention that they had people responding to the subject matter via Facebook and/or Twitter; major publications’ websites have options to connect via Facebook and every single person, organization or company that has a name going for themselves utilize Twitter as a way to connect with their audiences.

Online Marketing 101 will tell you that in order to be successful as a person, organization, or business, you need to open up your online market and to do that, you need to start a blog for your website, ensuring you always have fresh content for your website, and sign up for Twitter to connect with people even further and to spread the word about your brand. Online marketers have and will continue to give their colleagues and friends tips and tricks on how to utilize an online market, but the UK is taking it a step further and teaching young people early on about online marketing by implementing classes on Twitter, Wikipedia, podcasting, and blogging.

While many people are voicing their outrage over this decision for UK schools, I think it’s a pretty good idea. Perhaps I wouldn’t go as far as to teach classes specifically on particular social networking sites, but I would teach young people about the internet, given the technologically-driven world we live in today. When I was in middle school, sixth to eighth grade, my school taught us classes on how to use a computer and in seventh grade, we took a class on typing that was taught on an old-fashioned typewriter. It was because of those classes that I first got introduced to computers and how to work my way around one and also the fact that I can currently type around 80 words per minute. I currently work as a professional web designer and copywriter, so those skills have definitely paid off and I think they will also pay off in this case for UK children taught how important social networking websites and services are.

Any other thoughts? I’m quite interested in hearing from people who don’t think these classes are beneficial at all.

Blogging Basics: Time isn’t Always Money

We have all heard the phrase “time is money” when it comes to the business world, but in the blog world, to expect compensation for the exact amount of time you put into your blog is almost unheard of, especially when you’re new to blogging.

Whether you started your blog for personal use or to market your business, it is wise to think about your website as an additional relationship with a partner who is insanely jealous. It will need tender loving care, especially during the first three to four months and if you even think of giving something else your attention, even for a little while, your blog is going to be very upset with you, sitting there with no one paying attention to it.

With the amount of time you will spend writing your posts, advertising them as well as your blog as a whole, your blog will definitely take up a great deal of your time. If you started a blog to make money, give up your dream of making a living from blogging because it will firstly take a great deal of time to build your blog and start attracting loyal readers. While there are very few bloggers who can afford to quit their jobs and live freely collecting income from their blogs, such as Darren Rowse of ProBlogger, he tends to give people the illusion that it is easy if they just read his blog and follow what he teaches you. Even if you have been reading and following the advice Darren has given since ProBlogger’s conception, you may still be sitting there with a pagerank 0 blog (especially if you started doing paid posts or selling direct advertising on your blog, Google tends to hate when people start making money from their blogs) and an Alexa rank up in the millions. There is no such thing as overnight success in the blogging world and even if you worked diligently for months, or even years, your blog still may not go anywhere and that is a reality that all bloggers looking for some sort of payoff face and agree to when starting their blogs.

Although it seems like everyone already has a blog, it isn’t as easy as people elude to. Reading internet marketing blogs, taking professional blogger’s advice and buying books giving you the illusion that it is easy to earn a six-figure income from blogging alone isn’t going to work overnight and in some cases, not at all. Most importantly, you must remember the key points to blogging–You must have patience, don’t be afraid to spend time on it even if you’re not seeing any money from it and most importantly, love what you do because that is the only way you’re going to be able to spend so much time on something without any sort of payoff besides the sense of pride you have in yourself every time you hit ‘publish.’

Register to Vote Using Your Xbox

I Voted The 2008 election is almost upon us and many people still aren’t aware of the impact they have when they vote. Voting, especially for women, had become a well-deserved and well fought for privilege 88 years ago and since then, has become our responsibility; not just as women, but as Americans. This election is the most historic and crucial election perhaps in all of history and to let this election go by and staying silent would be a travesty. So while you’re playing video games, even if you’re unable to get yourself away for the amount of time it takes to download, print out, sign and mail out a voter registration form, Xbox has you covered!

You can now register to vote using your Xbox who have recently partnered up with Rock the Vote. As long as you have an Xbox Live membership it is completely free to sign up to vote; not only that, but it is pretty easy to do, too! With over 12 million members currently on Xbox Live, what they are doing is absolutely amazing to get more people out to the polls.

Not only can you register to vote, but Xbox has made voting fun with online polls and downloadable gamer pics of the candidates to show your support!

Get Involved with StumbleUpon

StumbleUpon StumbleUpon is by no means a new tool, however, I have found that a lot of people who should be all over this, webmasters in particular, have no idea what it can do for them.

StumbleUpon is an extremely unobtrusive toolbar that lets you rate websites as well as find new websites that would be of interest to you. There are several very targeted categories that you may look under to find sites and best of all, it helps you promote the sites that you love so that others will be able to enjoy them as well. Now, when you think about it, if StumbleUpon lets you promote websites, doesn’t that mean that you can also promote your own website with it? Why yes it does.

When you join StumbleUpon, you are given a page of your own where every website you rank will show up on, so all of the people who view your StumbleUpon profile can browse through the sites that you have promoted. This has been a very influential tool for me thus far, running two websites of my own as well as lending my expertise to other websites in order to get them a bit bigger than they already are. A great tip when using StumbleUpon is that when you submit your main page, don’t just stop there. People may be interested in your site, but if your website has a splash page where you have to click enter in order to view it, or you believe people just must see one page on your website, you can submit them individually. What’s great about this for bloggers, specifically, is that while you can promote your website, you can also promote every post you write just by clicking one button in your StumbleUpon toolbar.

When using StumbleUpon, we must adopt the online realm of thinking when it comes to viewers. While submitting your site, all of your pages and all of your blog posts to StumbleUpon, that isn’t going to do much if you have no friends and you’re the only one who visits your page. While countless people use this tool on a daily basis, there are also countless websites being submitted to the same categories you are submitting to, so the likelihood of people seeing all of the great content on your website through this tool, is pretty slim. I also have the answer to that problem!

StumbleUpon groups, I can say from experience, are absolutely amazing. A StumbleUpon group is a group of people who send emails to other members asking them to Stumble a page they have submitted or would like to promote something to a wider audience. All that is needed from you is to go through the submissions and click the thumbs up button on your toolbar saying that you like the post and when you submit posts or websites of your own to them, they will do the same. There are many groups out there with a large number of participants, so gaining attention to your website has now become quite easier.

After installing the StumbleUpon toolbar, I also recommend that you join the StumbleUpon group, StumbleMe. Become involved with other bloggers and help them gain an audience while spreading the word about your site as well; it’s a win-win.

The StumbleUpon toolbar comes for Internet Explorer as well as for Firefox and can be downloaded here and don’t forget, once you’ve downloaded the toolbar, join StumbleMe and see your hits increase dramatically!

Blogging Basics: Do You Have What it Takes?

woman on computer This past year has easily been marked the year of the blog. Not only does virtually everyone keep a blog, whether it be on their own domain, their MySpace page or LiveJournal, but it is also the time where more and more people are realizing the amount of money that can be made by blogging. But here’s a tip for anyone looking to create their household income by blogging: It isn’t as easy as it looks.

There are many bloggers out there that are pulling in annual six-figure incomes. Some aren’t making as much, but quite a few are able to live a decent lifestyle by what they make through their websites. Darren Rowse of ProBlogger is one of the top people in the blogging world right now; just look at the domain name! His website is dedicated to blogging for profit and teaching others how to benefit from blogging. Amanda Harris of Pajama Mommy is another person who not only makes a significant amount of money from her website, but her business posts go into more detail on how to do so. Another one of my personal favorites is Courtney Tuttle, who is the blogging bible as far as internet marketing goes. So how are they doing it?

Each and every successful website has a webmaster behind the scenes who has spent hours upon hours (I cannot stress the amount of time enough) marketing their websites. When thinking of your new website, think of it as practically raising something. Your website needs a lot of love and attention and if you let it go for even a few days, you have potentially lost a great deal of readers.

It takes months to build up an audience for a website and when you succeed in doing that, you cannot stop. One of the drawbacks of the internet and the society we live in today is that we 1: want instant gratification and 2: have the attention span of a gnat. Your website must bring a lot to the table that appeals to a wide variety or a large group of people and always keep in mind that there are trillions of websites on the internet today–Why do these people want to read your website? What do they get from reading your work?

If you’re thinking about blogging for profit ask yourself these few questions:

  • How much time can you wholeheartedly dedicate to your website?
  • Does your website appeal to a large group or wide variety of people?
  • What makes your website different than the trillions already on the internet?
  • If this wasn’t your website and you happened to stumble upon it, would you visit again?

This is just the very tip of the iceberg but I plan to dissect blogging for profit in several steps so check back frequently!