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Alan Blaine Whitney

Notes from Social Media Breakfast

I attended the third Bangor social media breakfast featuring Derek Rice. Here are some of my notes. These are my notes, meaning they stood out to me as important or that it was something I learned, not an overview to the event.

  • social media experts are non-existant
  • He used the term “web 2.0″
  • Even though social media is one to many, it appears one to one to the end person
  • 1 out of 10 people used their phone, iPad, puter though the whole thing, granted, maybe they were talking notes
  • 2 or 3 people talked through the whole thing.
  • Justin Russell was the only person to have his phone make a noise during the presentation.
  • Facebook Ads are worthwhile
  • Really, seriously, don’t just stump your own stuff.
  • seed your twitter/facebook/etc before really going live
  • People love lists

The other stuff was good stuff as well, but mostly things I already knew.


Twitter vs Facebook

I love twitter (even though it is currently down), but have long thought it was geeks only. More and more stats are confirming this.  Facebook is just better for the general public.

Disk Usage

Here are some neat disk usage numbers

~$ df -ha
Filesystem            Size  Used Avail Use% Mounted on
/dev/sda1              28G   14G   13G  53% /
tmpfs                 7.9G     0  7.9G   0% /lib/init/rw
proc                     0     0     0   -  /proc
sysfs                    0     0     0   -  /sys
tmpfs                 7.9G     0  7.9G   0% /dev/shm
devpts                   0     0     0   -  /dev/pts
/dev/sda2             7.4G  597M  6.4G   9% /tmp
/dev/sdb1             3.6T  3.3T  252G  94% /home

New Form of Spam

I am sick of getting this messages. Seems to be similar every time I get one. Guy has a pre-fabricated GoDaddy website, from New Jersey, his specialty is everything, his domain was registered a few weeks ago. Below is the email

Hello ,

Trust things are fine at your end. I am handling partnership/alliance function for Captivate Technology. We are a leading IT company with main competency in Website Designing , Search Engine Optimization , Mobile Phone Applications , Desktop Applications , List creation , Lead Generation. I would really appreciate this opportunity to better understand the current opportunities and see where we might best assist you.

Realizing you are very busy and speak to numerous vendors, we would greatly appreciate any assistance you could give us to help us better showcase our capabilities to you and deliver real value to your organization. How does your calendar look like this or next week for a 30 minutes discussion on the same?

Our Expertise:

  • Website Designing
  • Search Engine Optimization
  • Mobile Phone Applications
  • Desktop Applications
  • List Creation
  • Lead Generation

Perhaps we can schedule 30 minutes to review what is most relevant to you and briefly discuss how we can Make valuable contribution to you and your organization .

Please give a call at 201-984-1432 or email me at to talk about the idea.

I look forward to do business with you.

Outdoor Reading

Just for the record, the Kindle is the best thing to read outside. Paperback books are okay, but the wind can blow the pages around. Anything with a LCD like the i-whatevers (iPhone, iPad, iPod touch) are not visible in the direct sun light.

PHP Time Oddity

$start = mktime(0, 0, 0, 11, 1, 2010);
$str = strtotime('11-01-2010');
echo 'mktime: ' . date('r', $start) . ' strtotime: ' . date('r', $str) . "\n";

What do you think this will output.

mktime: Mon, 01 Nov 2010 00:00:00 -0400 strtotime: Mon, 11 Jan 2010 00:00:00 -0500

This is with php version 5.3.2


So I have been at the web thing for a decade now.  That’s a long time, over a third of my life.  More than likely, the next decade will include me working on web related technology. So I wanted to make some predictions about the future of the web.

SEO will be less important

SEO really started to get some commercial traction around 2002.  At first it was not a front and center thing, by 2005 everybody who was anybody was doing it.  The SEO industry was starting to get over the top, link baiting, keyword densities so high, they were unreadable, showing google a different version of the webpage than normal folk, etc.

So much of mainstream web development is doing keyworded URL’s, XML sitemap and rich keywords in title/meta/content.  So many good tools are available to everybody, including google webmaster tools and the like.  I just don’t see SEO existing as an extra anymore, but just a simple standard.

Location based web is going to be huge

Over the next decade as devices that are location aware are more mainstream, more web items will become aware of it.  At this point, I can’t envision all of the possibilities of this, but apps like foursquare could be the next big thing.

Network Recommendations

Instead of searching for what you need, say a plumber, I think recommendation engines based on social media input may replace traditional search.

Also, as SEO disappears, I think will will Social Media Optimization grow.

gzip compression

A very typical sql file

~# mysqldump -u root -p db > ~/sql
~# du -h sql 
45M	sql
~# gzip sql
~# du -h sql.gz 
11M	sql.gz

PHP Oddity

This was tested on PHP 5.2.6 and 5.2.10, you mileage may actually vary.

$number = 20864.01;
$num = $number * 100;
echo intval($num);

If such a piece of code was ran, but would one expect, 2086401 maybe. I would, but you actually get 2086400. Strange.

$number = 20864.01;
$num = $number * 100;
echo intval(round($num));

That will give you 2086401.

UPDATE: I guess this problem is not a PHP per se but a glibc issue.

Reloading Information

The other day I was thinking some about reloading shells. The process of taking spent rifle brass, and making them ready to go again. I am reloading for .270 winchester. The load my rifle has fellen in love with is 130 grain hornady SST in front of 55 grains of IMR-4350, touched off by a CCI 200 primers. Rifle groups pretty good with them.

Just thought I would share my cost. For 100 rounds, I need about 3/4 of a pound of powder, 100 bullets, 100 primers. I have plenty of brass, so this assumes that is not an issue. Plus 30.06 brass is easy to come by, which is one trip in the resizing die and becomes 270 brass.

Here are the cost of making 100 rounds of ammo.

Van Raymonds Midway Cabelas
100 x CCI 200 large rifle primers $4.50 $3.09 $3.29
1 lb x IMR-4350 $33.99 $22.99 $24.99
100 x 130 grain hornady SST $37.99 $26.99 $26.99
total reloading cost per 100 $76.48 $53.07 $55.27
100 rounds of purchased live ammo $179.95 $124.95 $129.95

So midwayusa is the cheapest, but it cost about 30 to ship the stuff. Cabelas is pretty good too, but about a three hour drive away. Even buying components locally at van raymonds is cheaper than buying pre-loaded ammo at cabelas.

So in theory reloading saves about 55% the cost of buying pre-loaded factory ammo. It’s generally more accurate to boot and you can customize loads to your gun. Reloading is fun too.

The down side of reloading, you actually don’t save a penny. I am not even talking about the up front equipment cost. I mean, you will shoot twice as much as before, and you shoot away any savings you may of had, but it’s fun.

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