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Showing posts from July, 2005

Google maps gets even better with 'Hybrid' mode!

I've been using UK Google Maps as my mapping website of choice for a while now. The road layouts are so clear and it's great to be able to drag the map around.

Peter Cooper has pointed out this morning that it's just got even better, now overlaying the road names on top of the satellite view. Check out this map of Ormskirk (the town where I live) to see what I mean.

All I can say is "wow".

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Great project managment podcast by Scott Berkun

Finished listening to a great podcast this morning on my way to work. It's an audio recording of a presentation that Scott Berkun gave to BayCHI on "What To Do When Things Go Wrong: Saving Design Train Wrecks".

Scott is an excellent presenter and it is both entertaining and informative. He discussed a whole range of topics on program/project management and how to save death march projects.

I really enjoyed it.

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How to use HaloScan's TrackBacks

Last night I detailed how to add trackbacks to Blogger, a free service provided by HaloScan. In this post I want to cover how to actually use trackbacks to enable the conversation.

So you've read a blog post that you want to comment on. You want to say more than just 'great post!' but don't want your finely crafted response disappearing into someone else's comment bucket. Not only would this be never found by your blog subscribers, but it's also difficult for you to see if anyone is adding to the comment discussion.

Enter trackbacks - a way for you to inform the original blog post that you have made a comment on your own blog, and that they are regarding the same topic of conversation.

How do you actually use them then I hear you ask?

Trackback URL

First of all, make sure that the original blog actually has Trackback capability. If you can't see a 'Trackback' link mentioned at the bottom of the blog post, that author (or blogging system) doesn't …

Adding TrackBacks to Blogger using HaloScan's TrackBack service

After being an RSS consumer for a while I started to pay attention to 'TrackBacks'. They are a way to allow you to comment on your own blog regarding someone else's post, but inform their blog that you have done so. By using this feature you can continue the 'conversation' without having to leave comments on the original blog and remembering to check back every now and then to see if someone has replied to you.

Blogger doesn't including this feature but you can add it in easily by using a free service provided by HaloScan. I added the trackback feature quite a few weeks ago, I'm going to try and document the steps I went through as I know that Lee Hopkins has had some trouble recently, and my friend Robert Baillie is too lazy to figure it all out himself!

The first thing to do is go to HaloScan and register to become a member. Once you are signed up and logged in, click 'Instructions/Code' in the 'Members' menu on the left-hand side.

Select… adds tagging bookmarks for other users

This post on the blog caught my eye recently, a new
feature has been added that allows tagging a bookmark for someone that you think might be interested in that webpage.

You tag the bookmark 'for' someone else by using the 'tag:<username>' syntax, for example to tag a bookmark that you think I might be interested in use 'tag:abeacock'. To see the bookmarks that other people have tagged for your interest, go to

An RSS feed is provided on that page so that if you subscribe to it, it will keep you informed if anyone is tagging bookmarks 'for' you.

By using this feature you can pass around bookmarks that you think your friends and colleagues would find interesting and/or useful.

Now I just need to wait for my mate Robert Baillie to become a user (if he's not one already!) so that I can pass relevant bookmarks his way...

UPDATE: Just visited Rob's blog and found that he is already a member…

Nice podcast mention from Lee Hopkins' Better Communication Results

I have just listened to Lee Hopkins' latest podcast tonight and was delighted to hear not only that he was mentioned me, but that he gave my blog a favourable review!

I've been enjoying Lee's 'Better Communication Results' podcast for quite a number of weeks now, having been referred there from the rather good 'For Immediate Release' podcast produced by Neville Hobson & Shel Holtz.

Thanks again for the mention Lee, just hope I can keep up the quality of posts that gave you such a good impression!

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Even more blog usage statistics via StatCounter

Lee Hopkins (who hosts an excellent podcast on business communications) posted a comment to my last post about MyBlogLog with a suggestion to also try out StatCounter for some excellent website (and therefore blog) statistics.

It's a cookie-based system, with a small amount of JavaScript that is inserted into each and every page on my blog (easy with the use of the Blogger template). It can then report all sorts of interesting information regarding number of visitors, returning visitors, browsers & OSs used, resolutions, etc.

I really need to start posting to my blog a bit more frequently, I've got a bit stuck in a rut lately, not really trying out new stuff and so my blogging has suffered.

Maybe these stats will show that people do read this blog, and that might give me the kick I need, who knows... :)

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