Internet

How the Net Neutrality ruling could look

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So, you use the internet. On your PC/Laptop? Maybe on your phone or tablet?

Think about the things you do on these devices… Twitter? Facebook?

You may be a Netflix subscriber… Maybe you do research.. heck maybe you do business online.

Well, the wonderful thing about the internet is you can find stuff… you can find information, you can find entertainment…. it’s always been wide open for the most part.

This “Net Neutrality” ruling, a fight over net neutrality has been raging for quite a while now, could change this.

The internet is made up of several ISPs (Internet Service Providers)… like Verizon, Bell…etc. Basically, what some of this is about is giving the ISPs some clout, to be able to dictate what goes through their networks… maybe charge you a little more for more access. Like think of dividing up the Internet like a pie…. maybe you’ll have to pay more to access a different slice that they don’t offer (anymore)…

Maybe they will limit your usage on services like Netflix or other streaming services. Here’s an article on Netflix’s recent reaction to the ruling.

Obviously, if you’re an online business, this may limit your potential clientèle and also limit your earning power without paying more. (If paying more is the answer)

So even for huge online businesses like Netflix, Google and many others, this goes directly in the face of their business model. And also flies directly in the face of why the internet has been so valuable and has grown leaps and bounds.

Imagine an ISP who would, as they could, limit usage to Netflix, and then promote their own version of the service. Essentially, if you ever had a business idea of the “open internet” model, your ideas could be halted and dead in the water.

This could and likely would stifle innovation as “access” would be in the control of businesses who had interest in what you can/can’t access.

Also, imagine an ISP filtering off sites as they wish. Bad reviews of their service? Well, maybe you can’t find them on their networks.

Seriously, the internet’s value is in it’s openness.

Get a Custom Google+ URL with gplus.to

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I was digging into trying to find custom URLs for Google Plus today and didn’t see any options to do this. I remember back when custom URLs came out in Facebook.

It’s certainly much easier and nicer to link to your social media site with a custom/easy to read URL then some long string of numbers and/or letters that you’ll never ever ever be able to remember.

So… after a quick search I found that there was a little service that seemed to cater to this (Google+ custom URLs). I decided against just using another link shortening site and use this.

So if this is something that interests you, just go over to gplus.to, enter your Google+ ID (the site shows a screen shot of what this means) and the desired nickname/url string… and voila…. if no one’s already chosen it of course!

I’ve used it, and you can find me over here:
http://gplus.to/cfyves

Blog comment spam – Internet annoyance

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Something that I’ve noticed over these last 5 or 6 years since I started blogging as a hobby is that the rise of “spam bots” submitting comments to blogs is just a continual annoyance. Not that many have ever made it through filtering and/or manual checking.

But it’s almost as constant as the air itself.

In a short time I amassed some 177 spam comments on 1 blog and 78 on another. I tend to have my filters set so that I review them just in case something legit gets caught in the cross fire. Thankfully you can usually tell by looking through the list rather quickly which are “crap” and which are real. Usually, of course, the spam filters rarely make a mistake and most that are held in question are rightfully labelled as “crap”.

But I wonder sometimes if any of the creators of these spam bots have ever profited from this continual gibberish. I mean, I know most of them, nowadays, include hyperlinks so as to attempt and increase their SEO value. But search engines have been continually getting updated through the years to become more intelligent so as not to rank gibberish sites in real search results.

I remember a time, when searching for a technical problem, I had come across many search results that led me to crap-spam-gibberish sites instead of the valuable information I was looking for.

But it’s been quite a while since that has happened. Bravo to Google for their continual improvement on search results to block out that garbage.

That’s my rant for this morning.

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer thinks you need to be a computer scientist to use an Android phone

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Found this interview with Steve Ballmer, Microsoft’s CEO, and thought it was interesting.

It’s neat to hear him talk about Microsoft’s products and take questions reflecting some of the technology giant’s future. But I just couldn’t help but be amused by some of the question/answers.

For instance, when it came to questions about Windows phones… and then being asked to compare to Apple’s iPhone and Android phones. Ballmer says you need to be a computer scientist to use the Android phone.

Well, come on Steve. It’s really not that bad. Have you ever actually used one? I understand you can’t get excited about Android phones… I mean, you’re trying to sell and push the Windows phones right?? Oh yeah, right.

Anyways. It’s amusing.

The part about the Android phone is at about the 21 minute mark.

Enjoy!

Microsoft takes direct swing at Google and Gmail with “Gmail Man” video

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Saw this new ad this morning, where essentially Microsoft desires to help make the case for their Office 365 products by poking fun at their big competition.

Something that strikes me with this kind of advertising though, it resembles those political ads that I really dislike. You know, where one candidate really says nothing about he or she’s platform but instead tries to leave an impression in your mind that the opponent is either wicked, cruel, evil, idiotic….etc.

I’m wondering what, if any, will be Google’s response.

If you haven’t seen it. Here it is….

“Gmail Man”

Google, Microsoft and Yahoo! team up on schema.org

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Major search engines, Google, Microsoft and Yahoo! have teamed up to help create some standards so webmasters can help better define the information contained on their website’s pages.

Lack of standards, it could be said, has been a problem for some time.

But this new site, supported by the major search engines, gives clear cut information on how to define data/text by adding simple HTML attributes to DIV and SPAN tags.

Definitely worth a look if you’re creating HTML5 sites.

You can find the website here: schema.org

Check out one of the examples…. A Person Schema

Need form submission to break out of an iFrame?

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I’m kind of posting this for my own memory.

From time to time I come across these situations where there is a simple answer but I simply have not done before or can’t remember.

So, here was the scenario:

I had an iFrame on a website that loaded some dynamic content and did some processing in the background (and yes, it had to be done this using, using 3rd party software API)…. this iFrame then presented a form with a couple of options.

What I found out after creating the form and functionality to handle the “stuff” in the iFrame was that the form submission and the next page load were being presented within the iFrame… which maybe I could do a little work around, but it wasn’t the best or cleanest way to accomplish what was desired.

So, after a little help from “my friend Google“, I found that it was nice and easy. I added an onclick attribute with my submit button… and voila it worked!

Here’s an example of what worked:

<input type=”submit” value=” Freedom! ” onclick=”this.form.target=’_top'” />

Currently playing with Pixlr API

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Building an interface which will be used to allow for image manipulation and there are several great looking products out there.

Pixlr is one such service. It seems very advanced and feature rich. I’ve been playing with it’s API a little bit, just started actually, and am going to create a little model for this project.

I hadn’t looked at online image editing solutions for some time and I’m impressed with what I’ve found.

Pixlr FAQ

Internet, ISPs, profits and usefullness

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I was just reading a petition on the “Net metering” issue that’s come about again. It’s certainly not the first time and likely won’t be the last, if mega corps are given the green light to meter and tier prices. Even the possibility to “tiering” the internet so that you may have to pay more to access other networks.

(Canadian petition can be found here)

To me it seems that the approach would almost undermine itself.

While I tend to understand some ISPs arguments that as more media passes through their pipes, thus possibly increasing the need to upgrade systems. I can’t seem to think this would trump the point of the very offering.

The thing that makes the internet so useful… and maybe truly useful at all is the fact that it’s open. You can access all types of information, see educational videos, entertaining videos, videos that will just waste your time! Heck… you even have blogs like this one to waste your time with!!! 😉
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The new world of social media commenting

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A website used to be a business card in the beginning… then you could find some web apps (especially e-com sites) that “did something”.

On today’s internet social media has taken off. Most sites that offer up content in one form or another (like sports commentary, news sites, blogs, etc…) tend to want your participation. It’s in the interest of most site owners to somehow spark a conversation on a news article in order to keep you coming back.

I personally find some of the conversations on tech and sports blogs/sites to be quite engaging.

However, I’ve become a bit annoyed at some of these sites. Primary reason? Because they still require me to “sign up” to their site in order to comment.
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