Saturday, May 31, 2008

SketchUp - Poor man's CAD

I ran into SketchUp today which is a 3d model software. Really easy to use and a lot of fun to mess around with. Here is a house I did in it in about 4 min.
This is a great tool for laying out a room, designing an addition, or messing around on a lazy Saturday :)

Awesome weblebrity music video by Weezer

Check this many weblebrities:

Friday, May 30, 2008

How to get a website look to your MindTouch Deki deployment

A lot of people are using Deki as a CMS. It is easy to manage, easy to update, and powerful with the extensions. I used Deki for my brother's site that focuses on his performance art: If you look at the site you'll notice that it looks like a normal website. I was able to easily create this using the CSS overrides for Deki which are found in the control panel under Visual Settings. Below is the code that you would post in your CSS site Styles override. Something to notice is that this will remove all of links to the login pages so to login append your url with /Special:Userlogin. Disclaimer: This isn't a perfect implementation of the CSS but it will get your wiki looking like a website fast. For a more professional implementation look at Deki CMS.

html body div.header div.mast,
html body div.header div.mastPre,
html body div.header div.mastPost {
html body div.body div.pageBar {

html body.user-loggedin div.body div.pageBar {

html body div.body, html body div.body div.file, html body div.body div#comments, html body div.body div.pageInfo {

html body.user-loggedin div.body, html body div.body div.file, html body div.body div#comments, html body div.body div.pageInfo {

html body.user-loggedin div.body, html body div.body div.file, html body div.body div#comments, html body div.body div.pageInfo {

html body div.body, html body div.body div.file, html body div.body div#comments, html body div.body div.pageInfo {

html body div.header div.siteNav #siteNavTree {display:none;}
html body.user-loggedin div.header div.siteNav #siteNavTree {display:block;}

html body div.header div.mastPre, html body div.header div.userAuthPre, html body div.header div.navPre {
html body div.header div.mastPost, html body div.header div.userAuthPost, html body div.header div.navPost {

html body div.header div.mastPost, html body div.header div.userAuthPost, html body div.header div.navPost {

html body div.header div.siteNav div.userAuth {

html body div.body div.bodyHeader {
background-position:right center;

html body div.body div.bodyHeader div.pre {

html body div.body div.siteNav {
html body.user-loggedin div.body div.siteNav {

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

New URL Same Great Blog

A weekend ago I decided to buy so that I can have a site to link to from my blog when I do documentation and so that I have a smaller url for my blog. You can now reach my blog by going to For all you people out there that have diligently entered, thank you for your persistence and support. Nothing will change with the blogs content except that I may make it shorter and reference info on my main site, which btw is running Mindtouch Deki Wiki.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Recap on Memorial Weekend

This was a sweet weekend to play catchup. I completed a big project of transfering 10 Mini DV tapes to DVD. I documented it on my new wiki that is under construction right now(ignore the background for now...still messing around with it :) ). Pam and I drove around a bit too and went to the was a good relaxing weekend. Ready to jump back into work.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

My iPod froze...

My iPod froze today right when I went to start my workout. It was very frustrating. So I cut my workout short and came back up to my place to figure out how to fixe it. I used the following page at Zolved to fix it. A very handy resource to have. Check it out.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Get RSS notifications of keywords in Twitter

Have you ever wanted to see if people were mentioning your product or company on twitter but don't have time to run tweetscan every hour. Use Summize. Summize is a very easy to use Twitter search engine that kicks out an RSS feed so that you can receive notificaitons anytime someone mentions anything that matches your search. This was rrecently integrated as part of Get Satisfied which ties in this component to your company profile to be site that focuses on the Customer Service aspect of the company.

Farecast RIP - bought out by Microsoft

Farecast has been acquired by Microsoft. If you are not familiar with Farecast, it is an awesome travel site that can give predictions of best time to buy along with compiling deals from other sites. I'm hoping that it's ability to search and find airfare doesn't fall under the Live algorithm. Only time will tell.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

SEO for websites

We've been talking a lot about SEO at work and I thought I'd throw up some tips for everyone out there on some key points for SEO. SEO is a lot of luck and constant tuning. Here are some initial steps to focus on for the initial setup.

  1. Make a list of competitors and keywords that you want to go after.
  2. Set a realistic goal for position on first page
Once you have an idea of the keywords and competitors that you want to go after do the following:
  1. Make sure all of your images have alt tags that incorporate your keywords somehow, but are still relavent to your content
  2. Make sure that the title for your site is comprehensive of what you offer and don't be afraid to add a summary with keywords
  3. Add meta keywords in the header of your website
  4. Make sure your content is relavent and links to high value content within and outside of your website
  5. Make sure you comply with Google's sitemap requirements and submit your sitemap to google to be crawled
  6. Blog, Blog, Blog - Link a blog to your site and do constant posts that link back to your main site to drive more traffic to your site and to build contextual relavence
  7. Setup alerts for your keyword content online and be prevalent in forums and other communities
  8. Setup external profiles that reference your site within communities that are related to your keywords and industry
  9. Keep your content up to date - Make sure there aren't dead links, pics up to date, and refresh the content to be relavent with the dynamics of your keywords
The biggest thing to focus on is that SEO isn't about ranking higher in search but instead getting more people to visit your site, so make sure when they get to your site that there is actually something worth seeing.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Geotag wikipedia content to create a virtual tour guide

This past weekend I was on vacation in MN and I went past a couple of obscure buildings that were really old. I was interested in their previous uses along with their history. Here is a business opportunity for someone, anyone can have it, all I ask is that I get to be an advisor :)

Create a website that feeds off of wikipedia and google maps so that someone can enter an address, or zoom in on a map to see building and then click on them to learn more. This would be very easy as you would be able to query the content at wikipedia to find the building and then sync it up to the record that can be found at google. Allow the community to verify the content, via pics and voting, as addresses can vary along with construction etc.

This would lend itself to being a great tour guide for anywhere as you could hook it up to your iphone(or other smart device that has geo positioning on it) and it would automatically pop up with information about building within a certian mile radius near you. If you tag the entries appropriately then a user can narrow their choices of building/monuments that they want to learn more about.

The reason I'm posting this on my blog is that it is probably already out there, and if it isn't I'd like someone to take the idea and run with it. I honestly don't have time to even start looking into it, let alone start developing it. As stated above, all I ask is to be on the advisor board if someone decides to move ahead with this, if this already exists please comment and let me know.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Awesome trip to Minnesota

Just got back from a great trip back to MN. We went there for my sister in law's graduation from the University of Minnesota. I had a chance to get together with friends on Friday night and had an awesome turnout. It was good to see family and friends again. As always the time flew and now I'm back in San Diego. I came back to 82 degrees which is crazy.

On a side note, the keynote speaker at my sister in law's graduation was Ray Suarez. He gave a great keynote with emphasis on how even though the world is in a bad situation right now and it isn't the best time to graduate as job availability is at a low and the economy is overall in shambles, it is good for the graduates because they can take the determination and enthusiasm that comes with finishing college and apply it in the real world to change the economic situation that we are in. I've been at my share of graduations and I'd say this one the best keynote I've had the pleasure to hear.

I'm looking forward to getting back to work and playing catchup. May is almost over and June is rapidly approaching. My wife will be starting school soon and so we are gearing up for that.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Mozilla Prism: Moving Web Apps Out of the browser

Mozilla has a technology that can turn a Web Application into a Desktop ap by simply pointing to the URL of the APP. The framework is called Prism. It invokes sort of an Iframe feel. This is beneficial for applications that you use on a daily basis and don't want to be distracted by the web browser interface or opening a new tab and wandering off into the wild wild web. A great use case is a web application like Salesforce, Google Calendar, and Gmail. I tried it out on the MindTouch Deki Wiki and it streamlines it so that you have the feel of editing within an application as opposed to being bound to the browser. It is a fun change of pace.

Monday, May 12, 2008

When will your IRS stimulus refund come?

Like everyone else in the nation, I'm stoked about the bonus refund that I'll be getting from the government. In case you are like me and wondering when your refund will come, check out this link which details it nicely. I was going to sign up for direct deposit but forgot, now I have to wait for the check, oh well.

Eventful weekend

This past weekend was an awesome weekend full of a lot of catchup and events:

Friday night I stayed in and got prepared for Saturday. Saturday I slept in till 10, which was kickin, and then woke up slowly, played some video games and had a bowl of cereal. Then I went and worked out(awesome workout) and fixed a couple of chips in my windshield with one of those chip repair kits. The kit seemed to work ok, I guess I'm not as worried about chips in San Diego like I was in Saint Paul as in Saint Paul the water can get into the chip and freeze and expand it faster.

After that I went to a Padres game with a friend and saw Madux win his 350th game along with seeing Trevor Hoffman close...Frickin Awesome! After that went out and saw the Disco Pimps(sweet cover band playing at the Stage bar in the Gas Lamp. Following that I went to the Royk Club(aka a buddy's place) and hung out with a couple more beers.

Sunday rolled around to another great night of sleep. Went to church, came back and had an amazing eggs, sausage, and toast breakfast...BTW I bought a toaster oven on Saturday along with a sweet ottoman that matches my couch. After breakfast I spent the rest of the day playing catchup on some websites including a signup page for my brother who is going to be conducting community classes for art and crafts. it is called SmART camp and you can sign up for it now if you are in the Fort Wayne, IN area.

After that I went and got groceries at Ralphs up in Hillcrest...first time to this one...they have bulk candy, I was getting fat off of it last night.

Then after that had a hard time getting to sleep but otherwise a flipping great weekend. Stoked about heading back to MN on Thursday to hang out with friends and see my sister in law graduate.

Friday, May 09, 2008

Why not a Good Samaratin law for animals

Two men are being fined upwards of $12k for saving a baby seal who was being strangled by fishing net. Why isn't there a good samaratin law for animal.

Also there is a dead baby whale under the pier in San Francisco. No one can touch it because of the same act that is fining the men who saved the seal.

What is the world coming to?

Update for

It has been a while since I've posted about MindTouch and the progress. I'm on the support side of MindTouch and I get to interface with the customers. From a support side we are getting more customers daily and I'm having a great time working with them and helping them figure out their stumping points.

We just released Jay Cooke for Deki Wiki which includes a lot of awesome features including polyglot support and a sweet file uploader. A lot of people ask about our release names. They are Minnesota State Parks. Here is an article on Jay Cooke.

There are a lot of cool things coming coming up at MindTouch. Also I recently celebrate my 2 year anniversary...crazy to think that we have accomplished soooo much in the past 2 years.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Taco Bell, Pizza Hut, and KFC under one roof

Through the discovery of Roy, I went to the famous Taco Bell/Pizza Hut/KFC. Since this was the first time there I thought it would be good to get one from each place. So I ordered a snacker from KFc, a hard shell taco from taco bell, and a pepperoni personal pan from pizza hut. I find out that they technically can sell me any of their personal pan pizzas because they are too old and so I said the snacker and the taco was fine. Then when my order was ready they said they had no snacker meat available and I'd have to wait 5 min...mind you I had waited about 8-10 min already. I substituted the snacker for a couple of wings. Still a good after bar meal...but stinks that I could tie all of the restaurants together under one meal. Maybe next time.