Monthly Archives: April 2010

StumbleUpon WordPress plugin 1.6

April 28, 2010

I had some comments on my StumbleUpon WordPress plugin. For some time I had not updated the plugin but I finally did the pretty little change to make it compatible again with the new demands around the registering of settings.

According to the stats there are 1552 people who downloaded the plugin so that is some motivation for keeping it updated.

Version 1.6 fixes the settings part. You can auto update using the WordPress auto updater for plugins.

For version 1.7 I will add the official new SU buttons as an option also since they are of course also pretty cool. I need to add also an option to uninstall and localizing, that will follow also. I might try to mix both reviews and views in one button, seems handier. I think it is only interesting to click through to see the reviews other wrote and/or add interesting urls that are not in the system yet (the grey ones). On the thing that IS interesting is the ratio between reviews and pageviews. It somehow will probably tell us something about the content of that link. Don’t worry about the time scale, I will see if I have time this weekend to fiddle this together and apply it to the thousands of links on my blog. Let’s see if we can find patterns in those ratios. My hypothesis is that both controversial and funny easy pictures create the highest ratios.

The pageviews button solely looks like this:

download it here : http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/stumbleupon-wordpress-plugin/

p.s. nice to see that it appears on the must have wordpress social media plugins.

A good example on how the plugin works shows in this post.

Sinclair User Magazines

April 24, 2010

image As a continuation from my last post to start somewhere… let’s focus on the Sinclair User. I grabbed an issue of September 1986 ( No. 54) out of the pile. Really cool: Dark Sceptre on the front. We were already in the era of pretty advanced games of the ZX. And each page keeps me busy up until the description of something new to play with: fractals :)

Here I find: http://www.sincuser.f9.co.uk/ a list of the magazines already scanned in. I see it was probably not updated after 22nd 2004. And not all versions have been scanned in completely, I could do that.

Probably I find a lot of other scans here:
ftp://ftp.worldofspectrum.org/pub/sinclair/magazines/SinclairUser/SinclairUserViewer.html

imageIt would be an idea to collect all scans and only then sell them on e-bay per title. So I could start with the pile of Sinclair Users

And now that I am diving into this… this ftp site is absolutely WOW WOW WOW. Just ftp to ftp.worldofspectrum.org and if you are someone who was into Spectrum back then… it’s unbelievable how much there is here. Hmmm.. I just wanted to clean up my old magazines but it leads to finding more things and more things and will probably lead to a lot of time I am spending here and there while I was trying to do the opposite.

Now I probably have to join that community and see if they still need some additional scans… and i need extra storage for everything that is on the ftp site… hmmm this going to cost me some extra time and money…

Let me start here: http://www.worldofspectrum.org/

What to do with 10 meter old computer magazines

April 24, 2010

Actually I wanted to write this in Dutch, then again probably it is a universal nerd topic.

I have been collecting (computer) magazines somewhere starting 1980. I think I have about nn meters of computer magazines now at home (never measured exactly: they are everywhere). Today it dawned me that it was too much. I have filled now 3 tall "billy’s" (with exta top) vertically with magz (3 columns per billy). In general people like me probably are collecting old computer mags starting around 1960.

The funny thing about collecting or just keeping those old computer magazines is that the complete pc home computing history falls down on you while randomly reading this stuff. From old Computer+Video Games, Spectrum Magazines, WordPerfect magazines but also newer Dr. Bobbs, Java magazines, PHP magazines, .NET magazines and so on and so on and so on. From reviews on pyjamara to the introduction of the XT to the description of the soundblaster. Everything is in there.

Another thing that always strikes me when I visit "people like me" is that when I come to their sanctuary that I always find the same pattern: dozens of these old computer magazines stashed in closets. So I think there must a lot of people like me around who have the same error: they can’t split from them.

So when I started today I should actually have started grouping them but soon I was lost in just reading them. I can not even get it over my heart to even sell one of them since I read about all these things that have kept us busy since 1980. Ancient reviews of computer games, pretty much any since the dawn of the TI 99 4/A. All the games during the 80′s an 90′s. Thousands. Tips on computer usage ranging really any subject. Question and Answer parts on anything that has kept us busy.

And yet… I have to split from them. I never ever look in them again. They just sit there as a sort of external memory or something to reference but which I will never actually reference.

But I get a bleeding heart from having to part from them.

So let’s first see if they at all bring any value on the market. I will just type "old magazines" in Google. I have a lot of dutch links between them because I don’t think I will ship any overseas.

I know that some money can be earned by cutting out specific advertisements out of them and selling these as loose items on e-bay, however that also feels bad. Cutting them. So let’s first do some research.

Another approach could be of course that I "do" something with it. Yet to think of what. Maybe a little computer magazine museum partly online partly offline.

But while I am writing this and maybe that was unconsciously the meaning, I am starting to think… there is a certain niche group of people like me. A sort of social group who probably all have the same "problem". So maybe it would be an idea to create a social network for this just like I created http://farmvillechicken.com : groups, forums, chat, selling and buying place, blogs, etc… would be and idea.

Just some random links while googling:

http://www.vintage-computer.com/magazines.shtml
http://www.theoldcomputer.com/Libraries/Librarys%20%28main%29.htm
http://oldcomputers.net/
http://www.atarimagazines.com/
http://www.old-computer-mags.com/
http://www.dvq.com/oldcomp/oldads.htm

If you are working in the IT: just take a look at this : http://edward.de.leau.net/images/ibm_dm_11_60.jpg to get a feeling of what I mean.

Wikpedia Sucks

April 22, 2010

I finally have to agree with the many Internet Posts carrying the same name.

I once thought it was a great initiative, unfortunately… it has become for a large part a very weird place. A lot of bad information. Any changes that are valid are removed for weird reasons or because someone with enough time wants to promote his own stuff or alternative stuff, definitions in many places are more like personal dont-have clue-but-I-have-an-opinion like pieces of text.

And so on and so on.I’ve went back to many changes I contributed but I see most have been removed, complete paragraphs of writing all wasted time to be replaced with either nonsense or very biased information by persons who really don’t have a clue on a certain topic. It is like that some fool with a geocities page on topic X rules topic X, if then a professor on topic X makes a contribution it is removed because it is either against the belief of an editor or he pretty much doesn’t have a clue.

I could give hundreds of examples but in general it feels like the man in the bar with an opinion on whatever topic, grumpy, not really well informed rules this place.

I really hope we get some kind of replacement.

Very good examples can be found on topics which have a niche amount of followers meaning: religious topics, paranormal hocus pocus topics, open source fascists topics, specific areas which attract a lot of hobbyists who then claim to be the world expert, areas with emotional feelings for one person or a little group of persons, and so on.

Whatever effort you make to improve pages, it is pretty much useless since contributions get either deleted (no longer recoverable) or changed in such a way that they again nonsense, biased or pretty much non professional.

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