Looks Like Facebook Home Is Not For Me

There’s been lots of news lately regarding Facebook Home. I use Facebook on a daily basis, but I’m not sure if I want them to take over my phone. I don’t even want Google to take over my phone; the first thing I did with my new phone was get rid of their search bar.

 

Got the Galaxy Note 2

Galaxy Note 2 Drawings

Ever since Samsung came out with the Galaxy Note, I was already interested. It has a 5.3” screen and a pressure-sensitive stylus.

Because I use my phone mostly for web browsing, the larger screen allows me to see more of a website without zooming in and out. I’m also not one who fears big phones. I got HTC’s HD2 a couple years ago when its 4.3” screen was the largest of its time.

 

Weekend Edition

Weekend Edition

After updating the site for seven days a week since the site was started years ago, I will be hands off during the weekends from now on. Because I don’t want the site to look too static, I’ve decided to redesign the “Most Fed Articles” block from the top right area of the site and moving it the top left just for the weekends and calling it “Weekend Edition.”

If you came to the site this past weekend, you may have noticed the change and relocation.

That’s just a start. I’ll try to pre-program other content for the weekends during the weekdays and keeping my weekends free.

 

Sorry, I Don't Have Time to Work on Your SEO: Backlink Removal

Penguins

Ever since Google released its Penguin update last year, which penalizes sites for being linked to by low quality sites, I’ve been getting a regular stream of link removal requests. (Yeah, I know this implies that my site is low quality, but I’ll let that go.)

 

Google Malware Detection Tool, Thanks for Ruining our Christmas and New Year's

Malware

A couple days ago, I was checking out film blogger and columnist Jeffrey Wells’ Hollywood Elsewhere and learned that his site was blocked by Google Chrome and Firefox because those browsers suspected his site contained malware. By that time, he had already gotten the problem fixed, but only after fretting over it for several hours during Christmas Eve.

 

Relieving High Server Load by Blocking Search Bots

Coding

Over the years, whenever the site was slow to load up, I always went through the same routine. I checked traffic logs to see if it was due to a sudden increase in traffic. If not, I would look at the mysql slow query log to see if there were slow queries bogging up the database. If that wasn’t the culprit, then I would take a look at the access logs to see if there were any irregular activities from search engine bots.

 

2012 Election: Whew! That Was A Close One

It was supposed to be a close race, but if you had been following Nate Silver’s 538 blog on The New York Times, then it wasn’t. Within days of the election, it showed Barack Obama with a probability of about 91% to beat Mitt Romney -- based mostly on state polls and the electoral college, not the national polls or the popular vote, although both of the latter are included in his algorithm.

Even with that stat behind me, I was still concerned because there was still about a nine percent chance that Romney would become president, and you know the saying - shit happens.

 

Cron Jobs and Feed Updates

RSS

Lately, we’ve been adding more local news feeds to the site. Eventually, I want to have most of the major cities across the U.S. covered. What I had noticed since starting this local news project was that the more feeds we've added to the site, the slower the feeds on the homepage updated.

 

Wrapping Up The Presidential Debates

Presidential Debates

Yes, the third presidential debate between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney on foreign policy was, unsurprisingly, boring, but at least it was good boring -- for a Democrat, that is. It was only surprisingly boring if you bought into the pre-debate hype generated by the media, which pointed to this as a make-or-break moment for both candidates.

 

Second Debate's Impact on Polls

So far, Barack Obama’s victorious outing in the second presidential debate against Mitt Romney isn’t showing much of a bounce in the national or state polls. If there’s any bounce, it’s very slight in Obama’s favor. It does appear to have halted Romney’s momentum though. That, in and of itself, is pretty good news for Democrats. As is, even though both candidates are statistically tie in the polls, Obama is favored to win by popular vote and electoral college.

 

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