Category Archives: Misc. Observations

New Home for this Blog

I’ve redesigned my website, and I am now hosting this blog myself. Past posts will remain at this address. Future posts can be found at its new address: www.dennisdeacon.com/blog/.

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Life Evolving with the Web: Facebook vs. Classmates.com & Reunions

The Web & Internet in general has changed the way we do things; the way we live. We don’t send letters, especially holiday cards, we just send emails. We don’t make quick phone calls, we tweet instead.

Recently, I gave into my lack of longing to start using Facebook. I had been using LinkedIn for professional reasons, and Twitter for both professional and personal reasons. Even then, Facebook seemed like a more professional “MySpace,” which I had absolutely no interest.

So about a month ago, I created my Facebook profile, and started looking for “friends.” Over a period of several weeks, I found several current and recent acquaintances, as well as a few long lost buddies (we’re talking grammar & high school chums). Continue reading

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The Power of Twitter

Twitter has become a major communication platform for many. It was very influential during the recent terrorist attack in Mumbai.

Another example of it’s power, though admittedly less of a major impact, was an incident that took place involving UK web bloke Paul Boag during a recent holiday visit with family. Enjoy! 🙂

The power and problems of twitter

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Email Marketing & Bad Timing

Lead times are lead times. They’re necessary evils. However, when the world changes, you need to roll with those changes. Or else, you’ll look foolish.

Take for example an email promotion I received this morning (Oct. 7, 2008) in my inbox. The promotion is from a local partnership with several local eateries which ship regional goodies nationwide. Continue reading

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Follow-up: Borders Reward’s Text Message Feature

As a follow-up to an earlier post on Border’s Rewards Text Messaging feature, I inquired with Border’s support on the status of their Rewards Program Text Messaging feature. I received the following response:

“The Borders mobile message service is temporarily suspended while the program is under review. We hope to have the program up-and-running again in the near future. Meanwhile, please enjoy the coupons sent via the Borders Shortlist emails. I am sorry for any inconvenience this may cause.”

Here’s hoping they resolve their issues.

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Almost…

Now usually, I’m not one to fall for spam email. You know, the ones that look like they’re from legit sources, likely ones that you naturally deal with, only to point to some spammer’s site. But today, they got me.

I received an email (like the 300 others) that grabbed my attention. I acted upon this email and, before it was too late, discovered that it was a fraud. Don’t fall for the following email…

Frauduent email received

Frauduent email received

I think I acted on this email because it was breaking news, a different format from what I usually receive. Plus, with the recent wave of celebrity deaths, I was curious.

Clicking on the link took me to a screen that requested that I install a Flash player. I already have a Flash player, so I was now suspicous. I hovered over the element and saw it originated from a .ru (Russian) domain. Sorry folks, but at least 40% of my spam comes from Russian.

Delete.

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Chicago Dreamweaver Meet-up Wrap-up

Attended our monthly local Dreamweaver Meet-up and again, a great event. We had a great turnout with a good group of newcomers. The topic this month was productivity tips using Dreamweaver. The presenter was Patrick Elward, operator of Chicago Web Management, and a certified Dreamweaver MX Professional Developer. Additionally, he leads the Chicago Webmasters Meetup Group. Thanks Patrick for a great presentation!

I wanted to share the productivity tips for Dreamweaver provided, as well as provide my personal commentary. Enjoy!

Productivity Tips using Dreamweaver

  1. Library items
    • “includes” are used DW-side (on local server)
    • Bad, because it updates only local files and those all need to be re-uploaded
    • Can be buggy to change/modify

    Comment: As Patrick stated, Library items can be effective, however, their value is diminished once you understand the power of server-side includes (see below).

  2. Snippets
    • Saved code or text values for reuse
    • Insert type ‘drops in’ a block of code
    • Wrap type ‘drops code’ around a block selection (tags, for example)

    Comments: I’m fairly new to snippets but have become a big fan of their use over the past couple of months. A great time saver. Continue reading

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