Showing Your Blog Or Website Feeds Elsewhere

Just asking, but how many of you have noticed to the lower right of this blog that I’m running feeds of my other blogs here? They’re both listed under the heading “Other Blogs Latest Posts”; I’m such a wordsmith. lol

Once you have a Feedburner account, not only can you track how many people subscribe to your feed, but you can take your feed and pop it elsewhere, as I’ve done here. I also have feeds from this blog going to my other websites, and vice versa. It gives me the chance to spread myself around to many places and, hopefully, get people to see what I’m writing and visit my blogs.

If you’d like to know how to do this, I’m going to tell you; otherwise, why bring it up, right? You go into your Feedburner account, then click on the tab that says Publicize. Once there, click on the link to the left that says Buzz Boost.

Once you’re in there you’ll see there’s code already set that you can copy. But what fun is that when you can customize it a little bit by answering some questions below it? Just ignore the first thing unless you have one of those accounts, in which case you can make your selection, click on it, and you’ll get something different.

For everyone else you can decide how many feeds you want to show, whether you want it opening up in a new window if someone clicks on it (choose “yes”; trust me on this one), give it a title, and all other sorts of choices. Click save after you’ve made your choices, go back up to the top, copy your code and you’re good to go.

Now, some of you are going to ask me “where do I put this code?” If you’re on WordPress, the best way to display this code is to pop it into a text widget, which is under the Appearance menu of you admin panel. Just drag it into whichever sidebar you want to use, pop the code in there, save and you’re done.

If you’re not on WordPress, and you’re putting it into your website, well, I make an assumption you already know how to do it, but if you don’t, you’d probably best ask someone who’s got HTML knowledge to place it for you. It’s not difficult if you know what you’re doing, but I’d hate to be the one to have you messing up your website because you didn’t understand where I was telling you to put stuff.

I hope that helps some; it’s pretty neat if you ask me.

Juniper Bonsai Tree

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World Diabetes Day – 2010

No Sunday question today because it’s an international movement day instead. Today is World Diabetes Day, where those of us who wish to participate write something about diabetes, and of course, being diabetic, I’m going to write something.

I’ve written on this topic a number of times, mainly as it pertains to my life. So, to start off, I’m going to share all those previous links here, just to get them out of the way:

World Diabetes Day – 2009

Some Diabetes Information

National Diabetes Month

World Diabetes Day – My Story

A Bad Day In The Life Of A Diabetic

Sugar Alcohol Problems

Diabetic Depression

On Insulin But Not Dependent (from my other blog)

This year’s theme is supposed to be about healthy lifestyles. Well, I’m still going to do it my way. First, let’s talk about things I haven’t talked about before as it pertains to me. Some of these things I can’t prove are related to my diabetes in some fashion, but the timing makes it seem likely. For one, I’m tired often. Over the last 8 years, I feel more tired all the time. Thing is, I don’t sleep more than 5 or 6 hours in a row most of the time, even after I got the CPAP, and I’ve learned that there are times when I wake up feeling pretty good, yet hours later I still feel I need a nap. That didn’t happen before I was diabetic; I only took naps on Sundays back then. Now, sometimes I need to take a nap before I can eat, then want to take another after I eat; strange.

Next there’s hair. The hair on my head has always grown fast, and that continues. However, I now have hair on my chest, hands and arms and a slight bit on my back and shoulders. I never had hair before I started taking diabetic medications in 2003. Now, maybe hair starts growing in certain places as one gets old, like ears and the like, but once again, the timing is suspect. I also shave more; I never used to have to shave more than every 4th day, but now I sometimes need to shave every day.

And my memory isn’t as sharp as it used to be. Now, that one easily could be age and all the things I have on my mind, but it’s strange. I’ll look at someone and not remember their name, and I’m talking about people I just finished talking to that I’ve known for years. I get up from my desk, heading to the kitchen, and will get to the living room and stop because I can’t remember where I was going or why. Now, eventually everything comes back, but it’s still freaky.

Next the healthy part. This was going to be a separate post, but I’ll toss it in now. About 2 months ago I went on a metabolic eating plan to help me with my weight. I’ve been going to the gym now since the last week of May, and I hadn’t lost any weight; I’d actually gained 9 pounds. Since I started this plan I lost all the weight I’d gained and a little bit more. When I was flying back and forth to Ft. Lauderdale last month I noticed immediately how much more comfortable I was sitting on the airplane; sweet! I’ve lost 4 inches off my stomach and some in other areas as well; I’m kind of a happy guy. The weight continues to be my biggest issue (oxymoron), but I stick to the plan during the week, except for meetings, and I get to go off a little bit on the weekends; I can handle that.

Medications… well, that’s dicey. When I remember to take them I do well. My glucose readings have been very good since I went on the eating plan, sometimes to the point where after working out I’ve gone too low and have to immediately eat. My doctor took me off one of the medications, which I see is a positive step forwards. But I still have to remember to take what I have; yeah, I’ll work on that.

Diabetes runs in my family, so I always knew it was coming for me. It doesn’t run in a lot of families, and yet the number of people who are becoming diabetic is growing in leaps and bounds. Some doctors have estimated that by 2050 half the population will either be diabetic or be showing diabetic symptoms; might as well just call you diabetic. If you look through some of those links above you’ll see it’s not easy fighting this thing, or even dealing with it sometimes. But as I wrote in that motivation post some days ago, I try to find something to motivate me and then get back on the plan. And having a friend of mine pass away on Thursday at the age of 42 due to weight issues is enough motivation for me to continue trying to be better when I’m supposed to be.

Everyone’s supposed to be wearing blue today supporting the cause. I don’t always live up to those things (I certainly don’t on days when we’re supposed to wear green or pink because I don’t have those colors), so I’m not going to be out looking for everyone to be wearing these things. All I’m going to say is if you’re not feeling well for a long period of time, especially after eating or drinking something sweet or with a lot of carbs (alcohol), get yourself checked out. The sooner they catch it, the sooner you can get on a program that, if you follow it, can help you live a much longer life After all, just 30 years ago people didn’t live much past 55 with diabetes; these days, if we take care of ourselves, we can live a nice long life without losing a limb or our eyesight.

I’m thankful for that.


DiabetesStore.Com America's Diabetes Super Store

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Skyline – The Review

Last weekend I mentioned that I couldn’t wait for Friday night because I was going to see the movie Skyline. Well, my friend Scott and I did go see this movie last night, and I decided to write a review of it without giving any of the plot away… I hope.

Truthfully, we knew we were in trouble when it took almost a minute to get through all those notifications of producers and studioes before anything got going. What we didn’t know is that the movie would only last about 90 minutes and never really go anywhere; well, at least I had some candy.

The basic premise of Skyline is that one morning at 4:37AM these blue streams of light start dropping out of the sky. Next thing you know, anyone who’s looking at these lights has the veins in their body start popping and they’re drawn to the light, with the next thing occurring is their being sucked into one of tens of alien ships that are hovering around somewhere.

The movie starts out that way, no preamble… and then it goes into flashback mode, 15 hours before that. What the hey? Not only that, but the flashback doesn’t set anything up really, and it only lasts about 10 minutes before we’re back to the lights again, only this time with a mix of what we saw earlier and what was going on that we didn’t see, but now know what’s coming.

From this point on we have fear and we have aliens. There are big aliens, smaller aliens, small flying aliens and the super large alien ships. The two early heroes watch as thousands of bodies are sucked into the ships, and for whatever reason they’re able to look at the light from a distance and not turn into something that’s going to get sucked in.

Everything takes place in one building, although when the military starts fighting back, we get to see planes and helicopters trying to take on these things. Only they’re indestructible. I just have to throw this one out. A stealth fighter hits one of the large alien ships with a nuclear warhead missile. You know that because of the way everything around explodes upon impact. The ship actually goes down, and there’s this large shockwave coming… only it doesn’t break any windows, there’s no fallout, and no radiation. And the ship puts itself back together. Later a guy is able to knock the glass out of another window with his elbow. A nuclear explosion can’t break glass, but an elbow can? Oh yeah; the ship that got blown up… it puts itself back together again, as does every alien that gets creamed by a missile or machine guy or bazooka or… whatever.

The only thing left to talk about is the ending of the movie. I’m not going to give it away, but I will say it was one of the stupidest endings I’ve ever seen to a movie. Scott asked while we were leaving the movie what it was about; I honestly don’t know. It had no real purpose; I guess they figured if there was a real alien attack that there wouldn’t be any conversation at all. Then again, if there was a real alien attack with ships this large I’m betting the military would have known it, we’d have all been told to leave the big cities, and maybe so many people wouldn’t have been killed at all. I mean, as kids we had air raid warnings going all over the place and practiced hiding under tables, both day and night. Not a single warning that there’s an alien invasion coming? Nothing on TV? Please!

I do have to add this. The budget for this movie was only $10 million, and most of the money had to go into the aliens, some of which looked pretty cool. The writing was bad, the storyline was bad, and no one looked particularly great. And one of whom I thought was one of the stars of the movie gets killed early, and of course it’s the black guy, and he was the only person in the movie I knew. Oh yeah; early in the movie the people in the movie think the water is safe, so that’s why they try to get to the water. I was thinking Signs at this juncture, but at the end of the movie you see that anyone who was in the water was killed as well.

I was trying to think of the last time I eagerly wanted to see a movie that failed like this; I can’t. I guess my string of picking winners is over; have to start anew. Skip this one, or wait until it comes on TV; don’t even rent it. You’ll hate yourself if you do. But if you’re not going to listen to me and are thinking about purchasing it anyway, then buy
Skyline from me. 😉
 

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Is This Scraping?

Something new has been added to people borrowing one’s content for other purposes. I’m not quite sure how I feel about it, and thus I thought I’d put it out here for y’all and ask what you think about it.


Scraping Snow
by Erica Blasdel

On my business blog, where I talk about all topics associated with the different things I do in consulting except technology, I wrote a post titled The Quick Way To Organize? Get A Box! It was a recommendation for a way to clean up your space and then decide what you want to do with everything that was in that space, one piece at a time.

Hours later I noticed a trackback in my spam filter and decided to check it out. I always do that because if it’s a legitimate trackback I’ll let it sit as a comment on my post. What I found was that it linked to a blog that had the first paragraph of my post, most of it anyway, then had a product listed that the site is trying to push. Here’s that link. “nofollowed” of course. If you check it out, the product is on topic with what I wrote. And there’s a little line underneath saying “Full reference (Copyright acknowledge)”, linking back to my original post.

I’m not quite sure how I feel about this. I mean, I can’t fully say my content was stolen since the site didn’t even use all of my post. It does give my kind of an attribution in linking back to my original post. Yet it’s using me indirectly to market a product, although the product, in some fashion, is about what my post was about, kind of like “borrowed” content.

So, do I view it as a free backlink, or as a piggyback onto my content to push it’s own product, like scraping? I really don’t know. I will say this, however. Because it’s different I’m not going to file a DMCA notice, and I’m not going to contact the person and ask them to remove it. This isn’t an endorsement; obviously I don’t know anything about the book, and it could be a good book. This is one of those slippery slope questions that might be personal choice, or there might only be one correct answer; I’m just not sure.

The questions goes to you; is this scraping, is it legit, how would you feel if it were you and would you do it?

America The Beautiful Pictorial Afghan Throw 50″ x 60″


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Bad Writing Kills Sci-Fi Shows

Recently it was announced that the show Caprica on the SyFy Network was being canceled for, or course, low ratings. People have started speculating on the dearth of science fiction shows and how they’re dying out and coming up with all sorts of reasons for the possible demise.

One site called Airlock Alpha had its writer come to a determination that what was killing many of these shows was injecting religion into the mix. Indeed, it lists Caprica, Lost, and the final shows of the very popular Battlestar Galactica as shows that decided to inject a religious bent into them and, for whatever reason, drove people away.

I tend to take a different view of this type of thing, and in a weird way it can be related to blogging as well. I tend to believe that some science fiction shows, like shows in other genres, might fail because of bad writing. Well, not necessarily always bad writing as much as a loss of what the shows were supposed to be about in the first place.

For instance, there was a great show called The 4400 on the USA Network. The first season, and it seems funny calling it a season since it started with, I believe, 8 or 10 shows, was absolutely fantastic. The general premise was that people had gone missing over decades and suddenly one day they all show up in Seattle, 4400 of them, with no recollection of where they’ve been. And, over the first set of shows, all of them started showing signs of genetic mutation that gave them superhuman powers of some sort, all different.

The second season came and everything went into the trash. No one had any idea what was going on with the show; it was like they had started a totally new series as opposed to continual exploration of what was happening beforehand, and that was that for the series. Nothing made sense; and you really weren’t sure who to pull for and who the bad guys were supposed to be. What you did know, though, was that it had nothing to do with religion.

For that matter the Sarah Connor Chronicles, one of the most awaited science fiction shows in history, flopped for the very same reason. The pilot was very good, but after that, the show made absolutely no sense. When the cyborg that’s come back starts having “flashbacks” of being a young girl when she not only was never alive but didn’t have a past to even be considering, you knew someone had been watching Dallas in the 80’s and decided adding ridiculous scenes was what made that show good (supposedly; I never could watch that stuff either).

In other words, bad ideas and bad writing killed those shows, not religion. I’m not a religious person, as you know, but this is one time where I just can’t let religion take it on the chin for something that has nothing to do with it.

The same kind of thing goes for blogs. I personally believe that almost any type of blog has an opportunity to make a big and positive impact in some fashion if some of the writing was better, and I’m not talking about spelling. Unique ideas, or old ideas written in a different and entertaining way will help a blog sustain itself. Being informational or even confrontational can help as well. But if you take a position on something such as gun control and the best you can write is “I don’t believe in gun control because I want to shoot my guns at stuff”, your blog is going to fail. Even supporters would be ashamed to own up to stupid writing like that.

As another point, in closing, I believe that Caprica ended up running into the same type of problem that Enterprise ran into. It’s hard doing a prequel to a popular show because we’ve already gotten used to certain things. A one time movie explaining the history of something works really well, but a full series is hard to pull off, and hard to keep on direction. As much as I loved Enterprise, as well as every other Star Trek themed show, it ultimately lost its direction in one full year by leaving what people expected in the series, that being ever changing themes and “baddies” along the way, not spending an entire year on one theme and then, when everyone thinks “finally, they’ve ended that arc”, going in a totally different and confusing direction; anyone who ever watched the show knows what I’m talking about (it went from chasing aliens who wanted to destroy earth from afar to aliens suddenly being Nazis; what the hey?).

Of course all this is my opinion, so I ask you what your opinion is. And it doesn’t have to be on science fiction; in your opinion, what type of thing usually kills new TV shows, if you watch TV?

Star Trek T-Shirt: Live Long and Prosper T-Shirt

Star Trek T-Shirt: Live Long and Prosper T-Shirt






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