Futurist Educator

30 April 2007

How To Multiply Large Numbers Easily

via

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29 April 2007

5 More Blogs That Make Me Think

Thinking Blogger AwardGo figure. I was tagged for the very own meme I started, , by Mihaela Lica. As I mentioned before, my aim with this blog is to offer content that is interesting, informative and things that could really help my friends who are reading it. I'm never afraid to give out a link if I feel it has relevant information and above all, information that is worthwhile for a read. Without further due, here are five more blogs that make me think:


Congratulations, you won a !

Should you choose to participate, please make sure you pass this list of rules to the blogs you are tagging. I thought it would be appropriate to include them with the meme.

The participation rules are simple:

1. If, and only if, you get tagged, write a post with links to 5 blogs that make you think,
2. Link to this post so that people can easily find the exact origin of the meme,
3. Optional: Proudly display the 'Thinking Blogger Award' with a link to the post that you wrote (here is an alternative silver version if gold doesn't fit your blog).

That was that. Please, remember to tag blogs with real merits, i.e. relative content, and above all - blogs that really get you thinking! Feel free to drop your entry URL in the comments here by all means. If you get nominated more than once, that means you can share 5 more blogs with your readers.

Happy link-love-sharing, whatever it is!

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28 April 2007

New Habitable Planet Found - Earth 2.0

Stephan Hawking once said "I don't think the human race will survive the next thousand years, unless we spread into space." I was really happy to hear about this news today when astronomers have found the most Earth-like planet outside our Solar System. The planet, Gliese 581 c, orbits the faint star Gliese 581, which is 20.5 light-years away in the constellation Libra. It appears to be in the habitable zone of space surrounding the star, where the surface temperatures of any planets present might maintain liquid water and therefore be suitable for life as we know it.

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27 April 2007

Maths Puzzle Worth $1000

The Royal Society of Chemistry in UK is offering a £500 prize to one person who can answer this math question which is used by Chinese universities in their entrance tests. Compare that with the test set by English universities for first year students and you'll know how far more advanced maths teaching is in China. The question isn’t really that hard, but the English geometry question is just ridiculously easy! Anyone wishing to enter the competition should send the correct answer by Noon Friday 27 April.



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26 April 2007

There are Two Types of Women Drivers

Those who can drive, and those who can't! Perhaps it's because a woman goes through more hormonal changes than does a man. In some circumstances, women have even been known to drive (gulp!) Formula One cars. According to Wikipedia, Four women racing drivers have entered at least one Grand Prix, and another tried to start but failed to qualify. Let's have a look at the two types of women drivers (short video clips after the jump)

Good drivers





Bad drivers










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25 April 2007

Pictures Worth A Thousand Words - Post 4


"Pictures Worth A Thousand Words" series: 1, 2, 3 ................... [ Picture via: Steli Efti ]

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24 April 2007

Fave My Blog and I Fave Yours

Now here is something to benefit everyone involved. Gary Lee started a new meme called the Technorati fave train after reading Maki's Favorites exchange experiment outlining the importance of breaking into the Technorati Top 100 most favorited blogs list. I've been invited to jump on this train and I think it is worth thinking about. I'm inviting the Top 10 most frequent visitors of this blog according to MyBlogLog:

The Thinking Blog Community

***Start Copying Here***

Here are the rules:

1. Write a short introduction paragraph about what how you found the list and include a link to the blog that referred you to the list.

2. COPY the Rules and ENTIRE List below and post it to your blog. To avoid duplicate content and increase the amount of keywords your site can accessible for, go ahead and change the titles of the blog. Just don’t change the links of the blog.

3. Take “My New Faves” and move them into the “The Original Faves” list.

4. Add at least 3 Blogs that you’ve just added to your Technorati Favorites to the “My New Faves” section. Remember to also add the “Fave Me” link next to your new blogs (i.e. http://technorati.com/faves?add=http://www.yourdomain.com)

5. Add Everyone on this list to your Technorati Favorites List by clicking on “Fave the Site.” (Please FAVE EVERYONE on the List prior to posting the list or a Kitten will Die Alone in a Dark Alley Tonight). Those who want good karma will fave you back. If not, you will for sure get the benefits of faves from the bloggers who continue this list after you.

My New Faves

Google Tutor - Fave the Site
TV Cells - Fave the Site
eWritings - Fave the Site
IJHedges - Fave the Site
Mommy's Getaway - Fave the Site
GR8 Egypt - Fave the Site
Divya Uttam - Fave the Site
Sean Dinner - Fave the Site
O Salepito - Fave the Site
Kyle Beabo - Fave the Site

The Original Faves

Gary Lee - Fave the Site *
Dosh Dosh - Fave the Site
Nate Whitehill - Fave the Site
Ms. Danielle - Fave the Site
Jeff Kee - Fave the Site
Scribble on the Wall - Fave the Site
Jimi Morrisons Head - Fave the Site
Jon Lee - Fave the Site
Samanathon - Fave the Site
Eat Drink & Be Merry - Fave the Site
The Man of Silver - Fave the Site
Hannes Johnson - Fave the Site
My Dandelion Patch - Fave the Site
Nathan Drach - Fave the Site
SiteLogic - Fave the Site
Julies Journal - Fave the Site
Tea & Slippers - Fave the Site
Pencil Thin - Fave the Site
Garry Conn - Fave the Site
Stephen Fung - Fave the Site
Ed Lau - Fave the Site
QMusings - Fave the Site
The Thinking Blog - Fave the Site **
* - Train Engineer
** - Last Wagon
***End Copying Here***

Apart from taking part in this meme, I will offer the same deal of fave exchange that might help boost your ranking because The Thinking Blog stands strong according to Technorati.
1. Click here to Add me to your Technorati Favorites
2. Come back to this post and leave a comment that you have added me. Use your own Technorati Fave link in the comment so I know where to go. (i.e. http://technorati.com/faves?add=http://www.yourdomain.com)
3. I will go through my comments and then add you to my Technorati Faves list as well.
In case you missed the link, I would like to present the world’s biggest Technorati fave button. Please click on the button and add The Thinking Blog to your Tecnorati favorites:

Fave My Blog and I Fave Yours

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23 April 2007

Thinking About America

Every now and then I receive an email that drives me to think further. Dave sent one of the longest emails I have had in a long time and asked me for my thoughts on September 11, capitalism, pollution and drugs in the United States. However, living in Europe and observing from the outside is very different than being inside the environment. I thought we could discuss about the different topics he mentioned here:


Ilker,

There is so much to discuss when it comes to 911. I would start by determining who benefited the most from 911 because people don’t take actions like that unless they think they will benefit from it. Then I would talk about the way the US responded to 911. Then I would talk about the 911 event itself and how it was done, which would lead to the US ’s official investigation and its explanation of how the event unfolded. And from there the endeavor will take on a life of its own if done right. It will polarize people from there on in as there will be some people responding with their emotions not their intellect. That’s when it gets fun to see how people can be so irrational.

I have seen this subject broached on many sites. It drives people to those sites as the issue creates polarizing views and people start telling their friends to join in to support their views. And if it turns into something interesting the main stream media could pick it up. Put up a couple of links to controversial documentaries on YouTube or some other video sharing site and away you go. It is interesting and fun if you don’t take things too seriously even though it is a serious issue. You have to be careful that people can’t not say you are editing the comments as that will kill the fun and people will stop posting. You have to let all the comments be posted in real time as people wait for responses and will respond immediately starting a back and forth posting by a groups of people. I know because I personally have been involved in many controversial conversations.

Other subjects that cause people to start thinking is when you talk about our economic and capitalistic system. For example when you tell people the Federal Reserve is privately own and it prints the US money and then charges the US government interest on the paper money they print without that money being secured with gold or other valuable material. What gives the Federal Reserve the right to print money and then charge the American people interest on their own money? The government gave the Federal Reserve the right to print and charge interest on that money in the early 1900s and it continues to this day.

Another subject that affects us all is our corporate law system in North America and other parts of the world. Let me give you an example of how it promotes everlasting suffering and everlasting pollution. Once you realize that there are only two main legal responsibilities for people who sit on the board of directors of a North American corporation it is simple to see how that hurts us all. The legal responsibilities in order of importance are 1) you must make decisions that make money for the company; 2) you can’t break any laws while you are making all the money possible for the company. Sound simple and harmless at first glance but let me give you a scenario that occurs every day in North America that causes untold harm to our society in general.

Let’s say a corporation is making a billion or so dollars a year by selling equipment and drugs to treat diabetes. And say that corporation’s research and development department discovered by accident a cure for diabetes. I say discovered by accident because it would be against our current economic law for that company to actively look for a cure as it will harm the company financially. Knowing this what do you think the board of directors of the company has to do when the information of the cure is brought to their attention? If you said they have to hide the cure you would be right. If they wanted to release the information and chose to ignore the law, each board member would be held personally responsible for the corporate losses due to their actions. They would have to pay out of their own pockets for those losses as it is the right of the shareholders to sue them for breach of trust because by law they have to make decisions that make money for the company and since it is not illegal to hide the discovery them must hide the discovery or face prosecution and the loss of their personal assets.

I know that discoveries that are in the public interest but would hurt corporations' financial interests are hidden from the public everyday. I have many examples that are not public knowledge that I could use to easily explain how it harms our world and may even destroy us in the end unless we do something about it. But before anything can be fixed you have to know it is broken and not many people even think about our economic system having a problem. All you have to do is figure out who benefits from an action and you can figure out who is doing what and why.

Another good topic is the war on drugs and how making drugs illegal puts drugs into the hands of the criminals because there is money to be made off drugs. Legalize the drugs and have the government sell them like they sell alcohol and that way we could stop the criminals from trying to hook kids on drugs because that will create a long term customer for the drugs. Right now we are allowing the criminals to decide where the drugs will be sold, the potency of the drug, and the quality of the drug and that is harmful to many young people.

Anyway as you can see I am a thinking person, but I can’t put all the things I would like to talk about in one email. I like to share my thoughts even if they are controversial or go against the grain especially if I feel I have a logical argument. I enjoy discussing hard topic as they are usually the topics that if a change in mindset were to occur it would make our world a better place.

It was just a thought as you have the right name (thethinkingblog.com) for this subject mater. Let me know what you think!

Wishing you well,
Dave.

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22 April 2007

Intel's Vision of the Near Future

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21 April 2007

Win Stuff - Contests In the Community

Regular readers already know about The Thinking Blog review contest where you get a quality linkback to boost your ranking, the best review wins a blog re-design worth $2000 and the second best wins a favicon design worth $20. Regardless, you can participate in other contests going on in the community as well. Here is a list of the current contests (that I'm aware of) run by members of The Thinking Blog community:


If you are in the community and I overlooked your contest, please let us know in the comments.

UPDATE: Bob over at BobmeetsWorld.com is giving away a free Nintendo DS Lite with a few games because it’s his birthday in May. While you’re there, check out some great posts about generating traffic and getting more rss subscribers. Don’t forget to wish him a happy birthday!

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20 April 2007

How To Work Faster on High-Res Screens

Here is a tip to increase your productivity on the computer if you have a screen with high resolution. Actually, it even works for resolutions like 1024x768. Sometimes when I'm writing a post, such as this one, I need to see both the browser and the notepad at the same time. That way I can read and write without touching the mouse. The idea is to split the screen in half using this nifty program called Sizer (freeware). Take a look at the screenshots:


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19 April 2007

The Legend of Power Women

This is the truly fascinating story of Queen Tomiris, who succeeded her dead husband - the former king of the Massagetae. It is said that she cut off her breast and rode into battle when her husband's head was brought back to her. It is said that she slayed Cyrus the Great (king of the Persians circa 5th century BC) by her own two hands. It is also said that she kept his head near her at all times and drank fine wine from it until the day of her death.

As leader of the Persian people, Cyrus conquered the Medes and unified the two separate Iranian kingdoms; as the king of Persia, he reigned over the new empire from 559 BC until his death. The empire expanded under his rule, eventually conquering most of Southwest Asia, much of Central Asia, and much of the region just bordering the powerful Indian empire to create the largest nation the world had yet seen.

During his 29-year reign, Cyrus fought against some of the greatest states of the early Classical period, including the Median Empire, the Lydian Empire, and the Neo-Babylonian Empire. Elated by his victories in Asia, Cyrus strove to conquer the Massagetae and venture into Egypt. However, Cyrus waged a war fatal to himself, fighting the Queen of Massagetae along the Syr Darya in 530 BC.

Not much can be deducted from the Babylonian tablets but the Greek historian Herodotus mentions:

"Of all the combats in which the barbarians (a term meaning non-Greeks which was not a derogatory term in those times) have engaged among themselves, I reckon this to have been the fiercest. The following, as I understand, was the manner of it: First, the two armies stood apart and shot their arrows at each other; then, when their quivers were empty, they closed and fought hand-to-hand with lances and daggers; and thus they continued fighting for a length of time, neither choosing to give ground. At length the Massagetai prevailed. The greater part of the army of the Persians was destroyed and Cyrus himself fell, after reigning nine and twenty years. Search was made among the slain by order of the queen for the body of Cyrus, and when it was found she took a skin, and, filling it full of human blood, she dipped the head of Cyrus in the gore, saying, 'I live and have conquered you in fight, and yet by you am I ruined, for you took my man with guile; but thus I make good my threat, and give you your fill of blood.' Of the many different accounts which are given of the death of Cyrus, this which I have followed appears to me most worthy of credit."

This tale has been the inspiration for the Amazons, an ancient nation of female warriors. A society dominated by women where no men were permitted to have sexual encounters or reside in Amazon country; but once a year, in order to prevent their race from dying out, they visited the Gargareans, a neighbouring tribe. The male children who were the result of these visits were either put to death, sent back to their fathers or left in the wilderness to fend for themselves; the females were kept and brought up by their mothers, and trained in agricultural pursuits, hunting, and the art of war. They lived in Pontus, which is part of modern day Turkey near the shore of the Black Sea, where they formed an independent kingdom under the government of another queen, named Hippolyta ("she lets her horses loose").

Now that's food for thought!

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18 April 2007

What Do You Think? Review Contest 3

Welcome to 3rd round of The Thinking Blog review contest. For those who are new to this contest and would like enter the next round, take a look at the original post for the contest guidelines (plus first winner) and check out the previous winner of the free blog re-design in round 2 as well. Once again I would like to thank the following 5 bloggers who took the time to write a review but didn't win this time. It's getting harder to pick the best!

Honorable Mentions:

The winning reviews are... drumroll please



Favicon Winner: Well, there is no favicon winner this time. Since I couldn't decide between these two excellent reviews, we have 2 winners for a full blog re-design worth $2000! Luckily, they were very kind to ask so little for a facelift and it didn't take me much time to make them both.

Blog Design Winners: Shankar Ganesh's Shankar's Tech Blog and Susan Driggers' Life is Risky .


..........

Shankar wanted a Web 2.0 style for his re-design in exchange for this excellent review. Rounded corners, reflections and simplicity.

..........

Susan wanted a Mac style for her re-design in exchange for this excellent review. Rounded corners, reflections and vibrant colors.

Thank you both! So check out their new blog designs and favicon but make sure you don't leave the blogs without reading the content and commenting on the posts.

Quick tips for all the others who didn't review The Thinking Blog yet: it's never too late. The contest is still going on and by reviewing this blog you get quality linkbacks to help your ranking and a chance to win a free blog re-design! Those who read, comment and link to the posts in the archives get extra points. The further down the road, the better. Graphic elements like screenshots or using the "Thinking Alien" logo earns you extra points. If you are really enjoy reading The Thinking Blog, showing some link love in your blogroll will help too!

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17 April 2007

Speak Up Against School Violence

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16 April 2007

Top 5 Creative Ads from Africa

Everyday on TV, internet, and almost everywhere in the world, we see advertisements. The problem with most of these adverts is that there are so many of them that seem so similar, they just become a blur to you. You never notice them. However, every once in a while one comes along that really catches everyone’s eyes. These 5 videos are some of the most creative ads in the world!

5. Home Delivery

4. Fast Food

3. Online Shopping

2. Forever Young


1. Protect Yourself

[ Via: O Salepito ]

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15 April 2007

Solution to War is More Weapons

In furniture form. Since the end of the decades long civil war in 1998, the Cambodian government destroyed over 125,000 weapons across the country. Meanwhile, British artist Sasha Constable saw an opportunity and decided to start the Peace Art Project Cambodia (PAPC) in November 2003. This is the most beautiful way to get rid of weapons - transform them into art as expressions of peace. See slideshow (flash):

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14 April 2007

Guide to Blog Promotion

In chess, promotion occurs when a pawn reaches the eighth square. At that point, your opponent is challenged because this simple pawn takes on all the powers of a Queen—the deadliest piece on the board. Of course, the pawn may be promoted to bishop, rook, or any other piece but why? This only clues the other player in to your secret plans. That being said, however, promotions to knight can often be strategically useful depending on the situation.

Let's not get too lost in metaphor. Suffice to say, the circuitous game of promoting one's blog in the blogosphere (without the proper armament) can often seem as difficult and unrewarding as a day-long chess match that ends in a draw. If you play your game right, however, that pawn can hit the big time. Ideally, the simple act of blogging in and of itself would attract enough traffic to please the author but there are cases in which more is better.

Blogging Technique Suggestions

This part of the traffic-grabbing techniques is a little more persnickety and not as readily activated. The basic gist of this section of methods is "If you build it well they will come." You'll need to incorporate the other aspects of self-promotion, but it's true that writing a great blog goes a long way towards repeat visitors and word of mouth blog.

Write quality content and do it well. Jen Garrett demands that you use proper punctuation, capitalize letters when appropriate, and don't overuse the ellipsis. She's being a bit of a grammar bitch, but she has a point. If your "style" is bad writing, worse grammar, no punctuation, and an ugly design, that might be okay for a niche crowd. But the idea here is to get a big crowd so fix yourself up a bit, pull it together man, have some respect for your readers, and discover a style that shines brightly through good blogging.

Publish regular updates. Danah Boyd once told me that she intentionally wanted to lower the traffic to her blog and she found the easiest way to do it was to stop posting so frequently. (Danah is an odd one, that's why we love her.) The reverse of her experiment is also true: the more regular you blog, the more traffic you will get. You've got to think about it like watering a plant—do it every day and the plant will grow. Hopefully your blog is not like the plant in The Little Shop of Horrors. That would be bad.

Think of your audience. A good way to build an audience is to cultivate one. When you keep your audience in mind, you are focusing your writing. This helps you develop a stronger voice and is instrumental in creating the brand that is you as put forth through your blog. Again, this is more of an overarching, long-term technique for building traffic and won't have immediate results. Nevertheless, focus goes a long way toward repeat visitors.

Keep search engines in mind. Note that sometimes your "audience" is whoever stumbles into your site from a web search. Search is a great way to bring in new visitors and there are a few things you can do to make your blog more search engine friendly. Use post titles and blog page title tags along with your post page archiving. This will automatically give each of your post pages an intelligent name based on the title of your post. Also, try to be descriptive when you blog. A well crafted post about something very specific can end up very near the top results of a search. For example, a Google search for "Book Cover Design" features this blog post by the illustrious Jason Kottke complete with reader comments.

Keep your posts and paragraphs short. Note the brevity of the aforementioned Kottke post. People will come back daily to read your fresh new work but spare them the one thousand word diatribes. Strive for succinct posts that pump pertinent new information into the blogosphere and move on. Keep it short and sweet so visitors can pop in, read up, and click on. Think of you blog as a cumulative effect. This doesn't mean you should never practice some long form writing now and then, it's just something to keep in mind.

Marketing Action Suggestions

The part of promotional techniques are simple actions you can take to publicize your blog. This category is theoretically unlimited. You could build your own blimp and spell out your blogspot subdomain in twinkly holiday lights across the side, that sort of thing. Instead, I've limited these suggestions to more obvious, grounded tactics. (If you do got the blimp route, please: use helium, not hydrogen.)

Put your blog URL in your email signature. Whenever I see a blog url in an email signature, I always click on it to see who I'm dealing with. Especially if it's someone I've never met. Email gets forwarded all the time so even if you only send out a five notes a day to friends, the potential number of people clicking over to your blog is in the thousands. (That is of course completely theoretical, but you get my drift—it's worth it.) I can't give you specific instructions on how to edit your email client's signature because I don't know which one you use, but poke around. It's somewhere in the settings.

Sumbit your address to blog search sites and directories. People look for blog content at Technorati every day, are you on their list? You should be. Submit your blog's url to Technorati, MyBlogLog, BlogCatalog, Daypop, and any other site of that ilk you come across. With the exception of Technorati, many of these sites are hobby or graduate student projects but they continue to gain visitors looking for interesting blogs to read, bookmark, and revisit. Not all of them have the power to crawl ever blog in existence so you can help them help you by dropping your url in the appropriate field.

Participate in meme games. A meme is an idea transmitted from person to person like a virus. If the flu was a blog, it would get crazy traffic. With all the sickness and disease analogies, blog induced memes are actually fun and can win you some extra traffic. How do they work? Basically a blogger will propose an idea like "Hey, let's post the first sentence of our favorite book!" and it will catch on like crazy with people linking to each other's submissions obsessively until the game dies down. A favorite meme for years was the Friday Five, if you're looking for something new, try The Daily Meme.

Advertise. If keyword advertising were affordable enough, I'd say go for it. For now, free is a good way to go. AdIcons is a plugin for Wordpress that lets you easily add and manage favicon ads on your blog. Host ads, place ads, it's all traffic. AdIcons blend right into your site and are fully customizable. You can join the AdIcons network of favicon-based blog advertisers soon - launching in a few days. If you need some exposure now, consider advertising here. Bloggers can place ads for exclusively low rates for the moment, while sometime in the near future real advertisers will have to dish out to get noticed.

Link to other blogs. This is a great way to get traffic. Here's what happens when you link to another blogger: she sees you in her referral logs, checks out your blog, and then very likely links back to you or at the very least makes a mental note to do so. Links are the currency of the blogosphere and it takes money to make money so start linking. Don't be shy folks, it's not actually cash. Not yet anyway—who knows what bloggers will come up with.

Be an active commenter. Try to leave comments on the blogs you read every day. This is in the same vein as linking. Leaving a comment on someone's post can make their day. Nothing beats getting those email notifications that whisper tacitly out at you from the screen, "You're thoughts have struck me dead in my tracks. I simply must acknowledge you and your greatness." (Or something to that effect.) Most comment systems also provide a way for you to leave a link back to your blog which begs a visit at the very least. So if you feel inspired, leave a comment or two in your blog travels. It behooves you.

Pitch your posts via email to other bloggers. This is a touchy technique and should be approached with caution. Blogger Eugene Volokh has published a short treatise on how best to pitch one's blog via email and it's filled with great tips and advice. Assuming your blog is actually worth pitching (of course it is), here are some tips from Volokh.
  1. Pitch the post, not the blog.
  2. Include the full text and your URL.
  3. Submit only your best posts.
  4. Don't only pitch to high traffic blogs.
Print your blog URL on cards, stickers, etc. Basically, if you plan to have anything printed up, put your blog on it. These days, more and more business cards have blog addresses listed on them along with email and phone number. I wouldn't be surprised if I started seeing bumper stickers with blogspot addresses on them soon. There's a lot of traffic on the 101, that bumper in front of me is prime advertising real estate.

Speaking of the 101, maybe you've spotted the giant orange SUV with the license plate that says BLOGGER while driving south towards San Jose? No, that's not Evan Williams as you would suspect. It is, however, a nice piece of creative publicity. If there's one thing we've learned from my Labor Day investigation of blog promotion it's this: Don't be that guy with the BLOGGER license plate but think like him. That's the kind of take-charge technique you should open your game with. That's how you can turn your pawn into royalty.

[Updated Biz Stone]

Of course, you need a create a blog in order to promote it. See my beginners Guide to Blogging if you already don't have one.

UPDATE: Did someone say PDF? ( Guide to Blog Promotion.pdf, File size: 76kb, Page count: 3)

[ Special Thanks to Alex Perez-Prat for beautifying my first mini eBook ]

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13 April 2007

To Sort or Not To Sort

That is the question! Regular readers of The Thinking Blog will notice that I renamed the "Most Admirers" section in the sidebar as "Must Reads" and moved it down a bit. I used to link to the most popular 3 posts for new readers to check out but I think it doesn't serve any function for regular readers. So I decided to include all the quality posts in the new section that even you might have missed and would like to come back to read and comment on them when you have more time.

Not everyone has the time to read all the posts in the archives and because only one post is published per day, there are posts like this one that are not necessary thought provoking for everyone. However, there is one thing I was thinking about today and I need your help to make a decision. I'm not sure whether sorting the links alphabetically or by date would be the most useful. Currently, they are sorted according to date published but I'm afraid to lose that order if I switch to A-Z and find out that it was better otherwise. It's a simple detail but being a perfectionist doesn't help me at all here.

Please choose either YES or NO for sorting alphabetically in the following poll:

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12 April 2007

How To Make A Lunchbox from CD Spindle

DIY Lunchbox

Another way to save the planet from rubbish. Do we really need instructions for this DIY? I'm sure it keeps the food fresh too.

[Via: Lady Banana. Bagel to go, originally uploaded by Pwka ]

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11 April 2007

What Do You Think? Review Contest 2

For those who missed the first round of the contest and would like to review The Thinking Blog, take a look at the original post for the contest guidelines and previous winner of the free blog re-design. Once again I would like to thank the following 5 bloggers who took the time to review my blog but didn't win this time. You can always write a better review if you like but feel free to contact me if you need any design tips.

Honorable Mentions:
Special Thanks: I would like to acknowledge Digital Nomad who did a second review on his other blog Soho Quest but didn't want to enter the contest with it.


The winning reviews are... drumroll please


Favicon Winner: Sean Dinner's Just An Idea . The second best review in round 2 of the contest and you just gotta love that screenshot!


Blog Design Winner: Agent Sully's Life Learning Today .

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Not only this fabulous mom wrote a comprehensive, well researched, or put simply an excellent review, but she also filed the entry under Celebrities! When I first read it I thought "no one could come up with a better review than that" and I was right. Thus, I gladly offered my services for free to the best review in this batch. She was extremely kind in her emails and said that she didn't want anything fancy to keep "all things easy to read.. and boxy." So check out her new header image, color combinations and a matching favicon. Please make sure you don't leave her blog without reading the content and commenting on the posts.

Quick tips: For all the others who didn't review The Thinking Blog yet, it's not too late. The contest is still going on and by reviewing this blog you get linkbacks to help your ranking and a chance to win a free re-design! Those who read, comment and link to the posts in the archives get extra points. The further down the road, the better. Graphic elements like screenshots or using the "Thinking Alien" logo earns you extra points. Also I urge you to not make my avatar the main discussion of the post. Everyone knows Natalia! It's overdone and there are much better, timeless quality articles in the archives to talk about.

Let the best review win!

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10 April 2007

Number of Thinkers Online Now

hit counters ... The image on the left is supposed to show the number of users currently online in real time. Although I've seen similar widgets before, I didn't think about this following application until now. Say, for example, you see someone you know in the "Recent Readers" widget of MyBlogLog. Knowing that person is reading the blog, or better yet a specific post, could inspire more "thought" or discussion with the current system of comments. In my opinion, this could be a great integration to MBL. Perhaps Yahoo should buy this company as well. What do you think?

UPDATE: Apparently the comments system was down in the past two days and was brought to my attention today when I received an email about it. Now fixed. Thanks for the heads-up Rosemarie!

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09 April 2007

Plus One Category Minus One Category

I decided to remove the "sports" category and added the two posts into "hobby" category because sports doesn't make me think as much as I thought it would. Instead, I added the "image" category to include posts of images, pictures, and photos that make us think. This also allows easy access to great posts like "Pictures Worth A Thousand Words" series (1, 2, 3) with one click. Hopefully the change won't affect Email RSS Subscribers, showing previous posts as updated.

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08 April 2007

Guess the Story Behind the Picture


What did this baby do to get mom so angry that she duck-taped him onto a wall.. along with a plush duck!?
[Via: GR8Egypt]

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07 April 2007

Never Go To Bed With Less Than 4 Women

Talk about risqué photos of course! When one of the leading men's magazine "Ché" released a special edition advertising campaign a little while ago, I thought "Great, now everybody will have a hot chick in his bed every night!" I was wrong. Even if you want to be the best girlfriend ever and get one of these bedsheets for your boyfriend - you can't! Unfortunately, these Maxim-style bedding sheets were just made for a newspaper promotion.


Until I saw it on TV. Well, not quite "TV" but Justin.tv! If you aren't following the Internet close enough then allow me to update you. Justin Kan had a great idea of attaching a camera to his cap and continuously stream live video and audio of what he is seeing and hearing. 24 hours a day, 7 days a week! He went live three weeks ago and has since reached a peak simultaneous viewership of 19,000 viewers. Kind of like a real-life Edtv or The Truman Show.

No more lonely nights. Now Justin takes off his camera at night (switching to a camcorder on a tripod) but you can still see him sleeping in bed. Must be a coincidence that he has beautiful girls all over his bed... sheets! Upon further investigation, I found that these cheeky photos are of the world-renowned photographer Tanya Chalkin. I think her posters decorate almost every guys dorm room (and dreams). Click the links below to see the full sized images. Probably Not Safe For Work [NSFW]?


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Sleeping Beauties................................................................................Kiss..............

Dreams become reality! Now you can get the life size print of Tanya Chalkin's iconic images on a bed comforter from Reality Bedding and encourage the college crowd to keep their beds neat and tidy! Now, how come they don't make bedsheets with hot dudes on it?

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06 April 2007

Turkish Version of Batman and Robin

Holy Impostor Batman! The Turkish film industry's goofy remakes of Star Wars, Star Trek, and The Exorcist are already justifiably infamous. You've seen Turkish Superman, now check out Turkish Batman! This 1973 version is a little different from the Christian Bale or Michael Keaton versions. No stealth tank for this man — he's got a crappy awesome Turkish domestic Fiat (called a Murat).


OK, so this is what happens. Turkish Dick Grayson calls Turkish Bruce Wayne, who's in bed being watched by Turkish Alfred (who in Turkey is a woman) to tell him Turkish Batman and Robin are needed. Turkish Bruce then jumps out of bed in his tightie whities. Turkish Alfred is shocked. Fully dressed now, Turkish Bruce finds Turkish Dick, Turkish Barbara Gordon and a woman sleeping on his floor. Then Turkish Commissioner Gordon calls on the Turkish Bat-Phone, and Turkish Bruce and Dick turn into Turkish Batman and Robin and get into the Turkish Batmobile. For some reason the Danny Elfman theme has been replaced by James Bond tunes here. Then we cut back to Turkish Police Headquarters where Turkish Commissioner Gordon (who has shaved off his mustache in the interim) gets a call from his doctor that he has a bad prostate. He is so upset by this that he tells Turkish Chief O' Hara to leave the room. Meanwhile, Turkish Egghead has captured Turkish Vicki Vale. Turkish Batman and Robin arrive at Turkish Egghead's mansion and fight a bunch of Turkish goons, but first they take their Turkish Bat-Capes off for some reason. Their punches are really loud. Batman saves Turkish Vicki from the evil Turkish Egghead. Turkish Vicki is in her underwear, probably because the script was written by Turkish Frank Miller. Turkish Batman takes his eyes off Turkish Vicki's Turkish Hanes Her Ways long enough to notice that Turkish Robin is getting his Turkish ass handed to him by the Turkish goons. Turkish Batman rescues Turkish Robin and then, just like in the American movies, Turkish Batman is so loopy from a woman making goo-goo eyes at him that he reveals his secret identity to Turkish Vicki. They kiss. The end.
[ Via: Killermoth ]
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