You Can’t Control the Links that Come To You

I love hypertext … I love the unexpected journey that a blank browser represents. As I wait for the "server to respond", my sense of anticipation increases. Where will this link take me? What will I find? Who will cross my hypertext path and what will be the shape of their footprint on it?

There are many ways to start a hypertext adventure. I use a variety of approaches:

  • Referring websites: I look through my list of referrals and trace back to the links others have used to find this site.
  • Search terms: I investigate my Google Analytics keyword information to see which searches are bringing people here.
  • Technorati: A great and easy way to track inbound links.

On the referrals front, the other day I found an incoming link from an unexpected site. It was from Jaffe Juice and I was interested to know how I had come to Jaffe’s attention. It seems that I had been nominated as a "most valuable blog" by my good friend, Batman … I mean, David Armano. Next thing I know I am entered into the MVB playoffs — up against Mark Cuban’s BlogMaverick — wow tough! But nowhere near as tough as Armano’s — he is up against my other great buddy, CK.

Search terms are also interesting … but mine are nowhere near as strange as Katie’s. I don’t know who is out there searching for this term (I dare not type it), but it just goes to show that the world wide web is home to some strange beasts (ok … need to check whether it was my Dad).


Technoratilinks Finally, Technorati can be in a league of its own. And with some strong help from the Z-list, I am receiving links from posts which are, well, unusual, and frankly, kind of frightening. Oh, and if you DO want to follow this link … be careful. There are some photos that are … well — read the words.

I leave some of these links … and these thoughts, to your own imagination. Hmmm.

It’s a Small World

Some time ago, my brother, Dean and I were talking about business opportunities. You see, he was in the process of moving back to Sydney from Melbourne and was thinking about going into business for himself. He is a great hairdresser but had lost most of his clientele in the years he had lived in Melbourne so he was thinking that it was going to be difficult to get back into the industry in Sydney. I suggested that he start his own business — but one with a twist — a hairdressing service that cuts your hair in your office.

A short time later, OfficeHair was born.

Of course, I have been pushing him into the world of blogging. And lo and behold, we just had our first blogger-in-common moment. I was suggesting that he try to hook up with some Australian bloggers who specialise in the Australian fashion and style scene … and sure enough he met up with Sara the Bargain Queen who I had met at the bloggers hookup after Ad:Tech. Just goes to show that it is a small world after all!

Oh, and in case you were wondering, I was following a little hypertext love tonight and ended up at Kevin Dugan’s excellent blog. As I scrolled through his past posts I found this great photo and had to share.

Typepad’s a Giant Pain in the A*se

Plumbers crack
Originally uploaded by little dune buggy.

You know, I have been a real fan of Typepad. When I decided to switch from WordPress and hosting my own server to using Typepad, I took some time to research the different blog systems, investigate their benefits and features … and one of the things that I liked about Typepad was that it was HASSLE FREE. It just worked. I didn’t need to work on the system or manage it. I didn’t have to back it up. And it came with plenty of ready-made functions and widgets.

But over the last couple of weeks I have been experiencing a great deal of frustration with the Typepad platform. This time, however, it is not just about MY blog, it is about the blogs of OTHERS. You see, my interest in blogging is mostly about conversation and about learning, so as soon as I cannot comment on other blogs I feel like I am being excommunicated. When I cannot PARTICIPATE in the discussions flowing in, around and through the online communities, I feel DISCONNECTED.

So eventhough I cannot comment on many blogs, here are my thoughts on some of the interesting conversations circulating at the moment:

  • Branding for the brave — During this great podcast, Drew talks about branding being for the brave. He also reminds us that you don’t necessarily BUILD a brand online, but that you use the Internet to COMMUNICATE your brand. This podcast takes a little time to get going, but is one of the best podcasts that I have heard (as it should be with Drew McLellan, John Moore, Valeria Maltoni, Mike Wagner, Mike Sansone and David Koopmans all firing on all cylinders).
  • Split personalities — More insight from Valeria which effectively turns into a “5 Reasons for Blogging” type post. Valeria draws out the way that many of us blog as a way to intellectually and creatively stretch ourselves, eventhough this may not be part of our “work”. It many ways, blogging is like studying — but you learn by doing and participating.
  • Read the label first — It is one thing to read a label but quite another to comprehend it. Sharon has an interesting post on job titles and it made me smile — I remember trying to explain first job at IBM to my family — they couldn’t imagine it. Ever since that time, my job titles have been a series of non-signifying words, reminiscent of that Far Side cartoon, “What you say, What dogs hear”.
  • Less is more —  Mark asks us to look long and hard at our creative briefing approaches and remember what it is that we are really there for.

All about Olive

I love the way that blogging throws new people into your path!

I was just checking out Stan Lee’s excellent blog, Brand DNA, when I saw this link. The site is called All About Olive and the site is made up of the life stories of 107 year old Olive Riley. While Olive now lives in Sydney, she was born in 1899 and lived in Broken Hill — far to the west of Sydney in what has been predominantly a mining town. It is the birthplace of one of the world’s largest companies, BHP Billiton (the letters BHP standing for "Broken Hill Proprietary").

Olive dictates her posts to a friend, Mike who also asks her questions during each post. And in a short time, Olive has become an Internet success with her witty commentary and suffer no fools (or photographers) approach — I particularly like this line (visit Olive’s blog for the photo!):

Are you going to have something or not? You’re annoying me.

So far, Olive has four posts, with each of them generating a mass of comments. There is something about Olive that really draws the reader in … a nice slice of life and the feeling that she could just, maybe, be your nanna too.

NYC Pillow Fight

Pillow Fight
Originally uploaded by davegolden.

OK … so I am jealous that there are events like this that I simply cannot get to. Though now I am thinking this would be a neat addition to our coffee mornings in Sydney (well I am close enough to sleeping that early in the morning anyway).

But for you folks living in NYC … check the details of the massive pillow fight in NYC. Happening today … well, your today.

Me? I will be tusselling with my own pillow … deep in dream.

Tell Me About Your Mother

Freud_dollOK … this is in the totally weird category, but I LOVE it. This site has all types of weird gifts … and the standout for me is this one … the Sigmund Freud action figure.

How did I find this? Why am I talking about it?

Glad you asked …

It seems that the Z-list has TAKEN OFF AGAIN! I am seeing a lot of new links from a new wave of Z-listers. Truly astounding! I will try and seek out a big, long, updated Z-list and re-post it soon. Obviously Mack Collier has a lot to answer for … except, you may notice that the Viral Garden DOES NOT appear on many of the Z-lists.

Vegging Out

Sausages and veg
Originally uploaded by boozyjimcarver.

I don’t know about you, but there seems to have been a blog explosion at the start of 2007! There have been lots of new blogs that have come to my attention, a range of conversations spanning different bloggers and their sites and a bit of invective here and there to keep it all interesting.

In amongst all this, there have been a few things that I have missed … or more precisely, I have seen but not really understood. There is this whole carnivore project going on with some of my favourite bloggers going head-to-head on their favourite meat. This week, Kirsty shows her support for Kangaroo (though I would feel a little uncomfortable about eating our national emblem) when pitted against tofu.

As a vegetarian, I am pleased to see tofu get a run, but fear we are just fighting a losing battle — even if Emily is providing some strong resistance. AND while I don’t really understand what this is all about … I did find this absolutely bizarre range of … "gifts" and thought of you carnivores out there!

Buon apetit!

Collier Comment Tour

Originally uploaded by La Fee Verte.

The last weekend was a busy one for Mr Community, Mack Collier. He set himself a tall order … leave 100 comments on 100 blogs.

And the results are now in. First off their marks are links to Katie (Shouty Girl) and Emily — both are bound to be at Coffee Morning, Sydney (so don’t forget to drop by and meet them face-to-face). Mack also generously links across to our embryonic efforts at

There are many more good links now to be found in Mack’s post … so take a look — there are plenty of great new blogs to dig around in. Most importantly, it is a great way of reaching out into the blogosphere and finding new inspiration. That is what I call loving the hypertext!