A Pledge to Write More

\"Project

I recently joined Project 52, a personal challenge geared towards getting fresh content on website owners.

I accidentally discovered it on new year\’s eve of 2010 when I was browsing some articles in Mashable for year-end reviews. After reading news, I became curious about the article authors so I started looking up their Twitter profiles. Apparently, I landed at Christina Warren\’s blog and this particular post caught my attention. That post was about Project 52 and her opening sentence was \”I don\’t like neglecting my blog. That\’s why I\’m joining Project 52!\” For a moment I thought, that sounds just like me!

I immediately read the challenge. All we need to do is commit to the challenge and write at least once a week for the next 52 weeks starting January 1st, 2010 to January 1st, 2011.

I grinned when I found out how dead simple the challenge is, but that grin faded when I realized anything can happen for the next 365 days, just like what happened when I put my blog in hiatus several times already. Nevertheless, I committed to the challenge and I am up for it. This is is my pledge to write more content — more sensible and valuable posts and not just random babbling.

Project 52 was made possible by Anton Peck and you can find the original proposal here.

At the moment, the website of P52 is just a plain and simple webpage because it is only serving as a placeholder but there will be more developments for the coming weeks.

Look forward for more updates here in my blog as I participate in Project 52.

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Now: Moving Forward

I was already on my way to ride a jeepney when I realized I left my camera batteries at home. It was very inconvenient but I had to go back and search for the batteries somewhere in my room. On my way  back home, I received a text message from my friend. I was relieved and I was really thankful I came all the way back to get my batteries because the plan for today was postponed and was rescheduled tomorrow.

Everything happens for a reason. You have probably heard of this cliche over and over again but this is true. It happens all the time. At first, I was very frustrated when I left my camera batteries at home. I could have just walked away and neglected my problem but it would render my camera useless. I don\’t want to render my camera useless! After all, I already took the trouble bringing it.

I don\’t know if it was just a gut-feel but I knew I should go back or I would regret it. Regret that I won\’t be able to take pictures, or regret that I didn\’t decide to come back when I know it was the right thing to do. Either way, I decided to just come back even if it would delay my travel.

So I was back in my room and I searched for the camera batteries that I misplaced somewhere. Found it! Then before I packed up again, I was informed that THE plan was called of, and now I am typing this story here in my blog.

\"\"There are many things happening in our lives everyday and we don\’t know why those things are happening to us, yet. Sometimes it could be as simple as forgetting your camera batteries for an important occasion or it could be as bad as getting a flat tire on the way to a very important business meeting, or it could be worse.

Most people would panic and forget to control their emotions on a tight situation. However, when unforeseen events happen, I suggest that you stop, step back and take a deep breathe. Think positively and think of ways on how this may help you. You might be forgetting something or you have to learn something from the whole experience.

I am thankful because this experience reminded of the valuable lessons that I learned outside during the hiatus of my blog. So, let me end this post with a quote from Soren Kierkegaard:

Life must be understood backwards; but… it must be lived forward.

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The Return of Teh Blogg3r

And so I returned. So what?!!!!111eleventyone!11!!

Well, not much to talk about except that this blog will come back to life once again. For some reason I feel that my 11-month hiatus give me enough room to reflect on my experience and things that happened when I was gone.

Enough introduction. Let\’s start something new! ^_^

To kick-start this post, I\’m thinking of re-organizing my blog because my format and categories are almost 3 years old already. I also want to create my own template but I can\’t do it now because of the recent upgrades I\’ve made. I used to have many templates for WordPress 2.0.x but WordPress never seize to amaze me — it\’s now version 2.3 and it keeps on improving in every release. Ever wonder how this blog managed to survive when I was gone? I have not updated my blog for a long time and I\’m surprised that Akismet plug-in helped a lot in controlling spam bots from infesting my blog. I was expecting that there are thousand spams already but the number of spam comments were minimized to a few hundreds only. It\’s also helpful that the comment review and spam-cleaning tool is more useful when deleting and identifying spam comments. It uses AJAX neatly in the interface and there\’s now a \”Mark checked comment as spam\” option in the mass edit mode. I\’m not sure on what version it first appeared but it\’s certainly useful.

I\’ll be trying every little new feature in this version of WordPress and I hope I\’ll get every feature working. I have some of my plug-ins broken and even my old theme so I\’m preparing for a big overhaul sooner or later. Let\’s hope I find time (and priority) so that I can work on these as soon as possible.

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Blog Presence

If you are a blogger, you probably want to read your friends\’ entries and put some comments in their entries, or perhaps spy on their entries and see if they have some interesting topic. :D I tried to hop from one blog to another, but it is just very inconvenient. Visiting 10 – 15 blogs each day is quite troublesome. I try my best to blog-hop once in a while but I really can\’t visit all of my friends\’ blogs. Worse, I forget their blog address or I do not remember to use my bookmarks, especially when I have so many things occupying my mind. The only practical way to \”visit\” all of my friends\’ blog everyday is via RSS (Really Simple Syndication). I get an overview of what they have added in their blogs every time I open my favorite RSS reader or AJAX desktop / homepage.

Below is a screenshot of Netvibes. It\’s my prefered AJAX desktop / homepage because it is very easy to use and it has growing numbers of developers creating and updating modules each week. I have added my friends\’ blogs here so that anywhere I go as long as I have internet access, I can check their entries in one location. It\’s very convenient and gives me more presence in their blogs.

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The idea is simple. You treat their blogs as \”news\” source. Using RSS, you can easily syndicate their entries and digest them like any other RSS entries.

Now it\’s more fun to read other people\’s blog. :)

P.S.
If you are my friend and would like to update me with your latest blog address, please contact me immediately. Thanks!

Links:
Netvibes
netvibes, blogs, rss, ajax, friends

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The Blogger Returns

\”I\’m always around\” … but It feels weird to be missing in the blogosphere within 2 months. It was natural for me to prioritize what has to be prioritized so I left this blog stagnant for so long. What I really miss is the technology updates that I usually blog about. *sigh*

To make this short and simple, I want to thanks those people in supporting me and my groupmates for the last 3 months in our thesis. You know who you are :D

I\’m officially back and blogging again. ^_^

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Play Flash Games in your Blog

The idea is simple — you embed few line of codes and you\’ll be able to play flash games with anyone who visits your blog or web page. Just register in Bunchball.com, pick your game and get the code for embedding in your blog or web page.

Embeded flash app hosted in Bunchball.com is not limited to games only. For instance there\’s a flash radio in Bunchball.com that enables you to share streaming MP3s (you have to host the file elsewhere). I noticed that most of the flash games found in Bunchball were created by Neave and some other flash apps were created primarily by Bunchball developer, Rajat Paharia. Flash game developers can also create and share their own games using the full ActionScript API which makes deployment of existing games possible to their multi-player platform.

I have embeded a tetris clone here in my blog. Let\’s play N-blox.

If you are using Netvibes to read RSS feeds you will be able to view and play the flash game too.

UPDATE:
This embedded flash game is already gone.

Links:
Bunchball.com – play with your friends!
Techcrunch.com: Embed Flash Games in your Blog
Bunchball, Neave, flash, games, blog

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Track Your Blog Comments in One Place

\"CoComment\"Fresh from oven, a new service from Switzerland called CoComment allows you to track your blog comments in one place. It\’s going to be popular with bloggers. It makes tracking comments so much easier because you only have to look in one centralized place.

You have to get an invite in order to test it right now. I\’m lucky to be invited soon after I have read about CoComment in TechCrunch. I\’m not sure if you\’ll easily get an invite right now. More and more bloggers want to get an invitation.

CoComment requires a bookmarklet in your browser to fetch the comment you are about to post in a blog. I doubt that you can track your comments no matter where you make them because not all blog softwares are supported yet. Here are the supported blogs at the moment: Blogger.com, MSN Spaces, MySpaces, TypePad, WordPress and Xanga. More blog softwares will be eventually supported by CoComment. Click here if you you don\’t know what bookmarklet is. CoComment supports Firefox 1.x, Safari 2.0 and Internet Explorer 6.0.

Using the bookmarklet, a copy of your comment is addded to \”Your Conversations\” page on CoComment. You\’ll now be able to review the comments made by all CoComment user in other blogs you have commented. Currently only CoComment users\’ comments will appearr in \”Your Conversations\”. Comments made by people not user CoComment will not be recorded by CoComment. In the future, there will be advance blog integration tool that will enable all comments from your blog to be crawled and indexed by CoComment even if the commenters are not using CoComment.

If you find this intesting you shoould read the concept behind CoComment written by Laurent Haug.

This is going to be one of my favorite blog tool!

Links:
CoComment
TechCrunch.com: CoComment: Tracking Your Blog Comments
Scobleizer: Track your comments, no matter where you make them
CoComment, comment, blog, blogger

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