Clients From Hell

A group of web designers and developers have taken to the video waves and created a Vimeo channel called “ClientsFromHell.” Here is their first video to help you get a feel for what we face on a daily basis from clients.

I wish these were really jokes. 😀

Clients From Hell from ClientsFromHell on Vimeo.

Hattip: Philip Dews

The History of WordPress

WordPress logo began with a humble question from to the world in January of 2003:

My blogging software hasn’t been updated for months, and the main developer has disappeared, and I can only hope that he’s okay.

What to do? Well, Textpattern looks like everything I could ever want, but it doesn’t look like it’s going to be licensed under something politically I could agree with. Fortunately, b2/cafelog is GPL, which means that I could use the existing codebase to create a fork, integrating all the cool stuff that Michel would be working on right now if only he was around. The work would never be lost, as if I fell of the face of the planet a year from now, whatever code I made would be free to the world, and if someone else wanted to pick it up they could. I’ve decided that this the course of action I’d like to go in, now all I need is a name. What should it do? Well, it would be nice to have the flexibility of MovableType, the parsing of TextPattern, the hackability of b2, and the ease of setup of Blogger. Someday, right?

Mike Little in England responded to the 18 year old in Houston, Texas:

If you’re serious about forking b2 I would be interested in contributing. I’m sure there are one or two others in the community who would be too. Perhaps a post to the B2 forum, suggesting a fork would be a good starting point.

By May 30, 2003, the world of web publishing was changed forever.

It didn’t happen overnight, but it happened fast.

As explained in the About WordPress on the , the online manual for WordPress Users:

WordPress started in 2003 with a single bit of code to enhance the typography of everyday writing and with fewer users than you can count on your fingers and toes. Since then it has grown to be the largest self-hosted blogging tool in the world, used on millions of sites and seen by tens of millions of people every day.

Everything you see here, from the documentation to the code itself, was created by and for the community. WordPress is an Open Source project, which means there are hundreds of people all over the world working on it. (More than most commercial platforms.) It also means you are free to use it for anything from your cat’s home page to a Fortune 500 web site without paying anyone a license fee and a number of other important freedoms.

WordPress is unique because it is an open source project created by the users, its own community. All these years later, little has changed. In August of 2005, with the creation of , the free hosted version of WordPress, was created, a commercial company dedicated to all things WordPress and supporting the WordPress Community. Continue reading

Analytics: Tracking the Competition

Web Analytics WordleThere are many ways to track the competition, from reading newspapers and magazines to checking them out on Alexa or other web stats and analytics sites.

Here are some articles referencing how to track the competition in a variety of ways including traditional media, social media, analytics, and legal spying.

Comparing your website to others means tracking their activity compared to yours. This might involve using an online tool that compares your site to theirs, or by checking each site individually and comparing notes. Some of the following will compare one site to another testing for a variety of data such as PageRank, keywords, traffic, and incoming links. Others will focus on a single aspect such as keywords or unique visitors. Use a variety of them to get an overall perspective on how your site compares to others.

Note: Google removed their PageRank data from the public a couple years ago. Online tools based upon Google’s PageRank data may no longer work or be supported. Please let me know if any of these are no longer active.

Comparison Testing Tools

Link Checking: Backlinks and Outgoing Links

Keyword Research and Analysis

Specific SEO Testing Tools

The following are SEO and analytics testing tools that cover specific types of testing. For example, BuiltWith tests the site and reports back with information on how the site was build, the publishing platform, supporting technologies, and other information about how the site was built.

Reference Articles

The following are articles and sites specializing in analytics, SEO, and optimization.

The Conversation Prism by Brian Solis and Jesse Thomas

Conversation Prism by Brian Solis and Jesse Thomas v3

The Conversation Prism by Brian Solis and Jesse Thomas was one of the earliest models for helping to visualize the conversations that define the social web.

Created originally in August of 2008, it has been updated several times as social media networks and trends have changed.

The prism chart is a bit hard to see on a web page, so let’s break it down into digestible parts.

Inside the Chart

conversation prism by brian solis and jesse thomas v2The original version one and two of the Conversation Prism spelled out strategies for business communication and the social web. It bears highlighting as part of our conversation on marketing within the social web.

Version 3, shown at the top, removes the center strategies, focusing totally on listening. Many businesses don’t “get” what listening really means when it comes to the social web.

The Brand is the core of the circular chart representing the end goal: marketing the brand. From this, all things branch out as the goal must be served by the actions within the social web.

Wrapped around the inner Brand circle is a ring, called a halo, listing: Observation, Listening, Identification, Internalization, Prioritization, and Routing. These are the definitions of observing, listening, or participating in social media.

The next halo represents the “intersection of all public facing departments,” which is the business departments or titles to create a social media Customer Relationship Management (CRM) strategy. They include Customer or Product Support, Product and Sales, Marketing/PR, Community, Corporate Communications, Crisis, and Support.

Halo three is described as the completion of the conversational workflow powered by “continual rotation of listening, responding, and learning online and in the real world.” It is represented by ongoing feedback and insight, participation, online and real world relationships and communication.

The outer part of the circle highlights the specific social media services sorted by subject matter and interest such as Questions and Answers found through Quora and LinkedIn, and Wikis with Wikipedia, TWiki, Wika, and other wiki-based sites and services.

This chart and others are available through The Conversation Prism Store.