Blog: My Brain Dump

A Solution To Tracking Keyword Rankings

I cannot tell you how many years, or how many hundreds (possibly even thousands) of dollars I’ve invested in just trying to keep track of how my web sites are doing rank-wise in Google. Whether my rankings were good or terrible, just seemly seeing them on a daily or weekly basis was constantly a major hassle. I’ve spent a lot of money and tons and tons of hours on it, and finally threw in the towel some time back. It just wasn’t worth my time.

However, more recently, I had gotten more serious again about ranking my voiceover web site. I won’t go into all the history of voice over on the web, but where it once was a trickle, there are now a flood of people there beating down the doors for your attention. And because this is how I make my living, I need to be in the game.

I was turned on to an app a couple months back called AccuRanker. I got a terrific deal on it at the time, and after looking it over, it seemed like a steal….and it was. This thing does all the heavy lifting for me, and checks my rankings even if I don’t bother to look at them each day. I’m currently tracking something like 85 keywords/phrases just related to that one site alone. Someday, I hope to add more and track some other sites.

The app is more sophisticated than anything I’d ever need…but that’s good, because over time, I am likely to grow into it and take advantage of more of its features. Among them are keyword suggestions and all sorts of metrics that I don’t even understand. It allows you access (if you want) to multiple search platforms, and to see the difference in your rankings between desktop and mobile devices.

It also allows you to just check the site itself, or specific themed pages within the site. Very handy stuff.

For those who can catch a deal or who are more serious and sophisticated about this stuff than I am and can afford it (it’s designed for agencies and professionals), I would highly recommend checking it out!

Great New Netflix Resources

I’ve added a couple new pages to the site that might be of real interest to fans of Netflix.

1. Folks are always asking: “Hey, what’s good to watch on Netflix tonight??” And their friends will pop up with a suggestion, even though they may have no idea what kind of mood the person might be in at the time. Luckily, there are some SUPERB tools for finding a great Netflix movies. I’ve corralled several of them…along with some great recommendation lists, on this page:
Looking for a Good Movie on Netflix?

2. Also, the Netflix recommendation engine is great for what it is…but, let’s be honest…they rarely show you more than a couple dozen choices in each genre. But, what if you could see everything they have in your favorite category? Well, here’s some good news! There’s a backdoor way to see the entire contents of certain categories. And you’ll find a couple hundred links directly into those categories on this page:
Browse Specific Netflix Categories

Check these things out. You’re likely to be surprised at how helpful and interesting they are. And, if you enjoy them, please consider sharing them with your friends. En-Joy! 😉

Facebook Sharing: The Little-Known Sleaze Factor

facebook-likeI am what might be called an “active sharer” with my friends on Facebook. I enjoy sharing that which makes me laugh, marvel or challenges my thinking.

However, there’s a really ugly thing happening on Facebook. It’s been going on for a long time, and I just thought it was working pointing it out…so that folks of conscience might ponder whether or not they want to change their sharing behavior in some way.

The vast majority of the videos that get shared directly on Facebook (and no, we’re not talking about YouTube videos here) are actually content stolen from their original creators and reposted by the thieves on Facebook.

Why would they do this? Well, there’s half the story…which is that those who post them are too lazy and too uncreative to come up with original content of their own, so, instead, they resort to stealing. But the more interesting part of the story is that many of them are building their “brands”..garnering lots of Likes and followers who they can continue to spoon-feed content…and they don’t want people going to YouTube to watch instead of their page. Many of these pages are then used to advertise products or to redirect folks to web sites outside of Facebook. But many of them will be sold off to the highest bidder…giving marketers access to your personal info that you never intended to grant to them. This is actually a massive business…where large followings can fetch some pretty serious money…again…built on STOLEN CONTENT. You can read more about that here.

So, that’s one factor worth being aware of. Another is the strong potential for loss of income to those who created of the original video. You see, YouTube actually PAYS people to great good content through their monetization program. In other words, if a video gets a LOT of views, the creator can end up earning tens of thousands of dollars. There are a number of people who make their full-time living doing this.

So…thief does no work: MAKES MONEY. Video creator does all the work: LOSES MONEY. Anybody else see something wrong with this picture?

And, of course, Facebook does nothing to police this abuse at all…although I’m sure they have a mechanism for handling complaints if someone is aware their content has been reposted and takes the time to complain and document their ownership. Worse yet, they promote the heck out of these shares “of theirs” in our News Feeds…way moreso than the YouTube versions.

OK, but…what should you do about it?

What I do personally is try to go to YouTube to find the original video…even on YouTube, there are those who steal and re-post. And then I share that instead of the video posted to Facebook.

So…before you just click Share on a video that was posted directly to Facebook, please be aware that you are quite likely unwittingly supporting piracy, and likely discouraging further creativity from the creator of the original video.

Roby Duke’s “Bridge Divine” – The Lyrics

Very few songs have moved me in recent years like this song. I first became a fan of Roby Duke in 1982 with the release of Not The Same. The terrific songwriting, his pure blue-eyed soul vocals and some exceptional jazz-pop arrangements drew me in and haven’t let me go in the ensuing 30 years. I managed a Christian record store at the time, and sold the disc to people all across the board…from pop and rock fans to lovers of black gospel choirs. Then, in 2008, I saw this video posted on YouTube. I had heard of Roby’s passing…but didn’t realize until I double-checked that this video was recorded roughly 3 days before his death. It’s a perfect picture of the heart of a believer as they ponder both their own passing and the fate of a lost world. Every time I listen, I hear new things within this song. I went hunting for the lyrics online and could find none (though Google suggested several pages which, by all rights, *should* have had them). So, I took the time to transcribe them myself. These are the lyrics from the album version. He changed up a couple things in the live performance on the video. I hope you enjoy this as much as I did! And Roby…rest in peace, brother. You left us a beautiful legacy.

When the roll is called up yonder
I believe that I’ll be there
Though I am the same man
With the same need as always

So they say
A soul is free to
Choose a path
To each his own
We’re livin’ in the same world
Under the same pale moon
Together

CHORUS
And some change would do us all some good
It’s so good for one to find
That there is no stairway to heaven
Only a Bridge Divine

You tell me change
Change is needed
To keep the world from growing old
And we all have the same dreams for our children as always

He hung the earth upon nothing
Said to a storm, “Peace, be still.”
What more could we give them
Something that would keep them safe
Forever and ever?

CHORUS

You tell me hearts are torn asunder
By the pain of moving on
We’re travelin’ on the same rails
Upon a train that’s bound for forever

I hope you know
You’re still my good friend
But when the saints go marchin’ in
I would like to turn and see your face…

CHORUS

written by Roby Duke. all appropriate credits belong to him.

Envisioning the Value of Money and Debt

I received this info in an email recently. I don’t know the source of the info or images. But it’s very sobering, and I thought you might enjoy sharing it with other in a form other than email…so I posted it here.


One Hundred Dollars

$100 – Most counterfeited money denomination in the world. Keeps the world moving.


Ten Thousand Dollars

$10,000 – Enough for a great vacation or to buy a used car. Approximately one year of work for the average human on earth.


One Million Dollars

$1,000,000 – Not as big a pile as you thought, eh? More than most humans will earn in a lifetime.


One Hundred Million Dollars

$100,000,000 – Plenty to go around for everyone. Fits nicely on an ISO/Military standard-sized pallet.


One Billion Dollars

$1,000,000,000 – Take a large truck with you when robbing the bank. Now we’re getting serious!


One Trillion Dollars

$1,000,000,000,000

When the U.S government speaks about a 1.7 trillion deficit – this is the volume of cash the U.S. Government borrowed in 2010 to run itself.

Keep in mind it is double-stacked pallets of $100 million dollars each, full of $100 dollar bills. You are going to need a lot of trucks to freight this around.

If you spent $1 million a day since Jesus was born, you would have not spent $1 trillion by now…but only about $700 billion – the same amount the banks got during the bailout.


One Trillion Dollars

Comparison of $1,000,000,000,000 dollars to a standard-sized American Football field and European Football field. Say hello to the Boeing 747-400 transcontinental airliner that’s hiding on the right. Until recently, this was the biggest passenger plane in the world.


15 Trillion Dollars

$15,000,000,000,000 – One trillion less that the US national debt (credit bill) of $16 trillion surpassed in September 2012. The Statue of Liberty seems rather worried as United States national debt passes 20% of the entire world’s combined GDP (Gross Domestic Product). In 2011, the National Debt exceeded 100% of GDP, and ventured into the 100%+ debt-to-GDP ratio that the European PIIGS have (bankrupting nations).


$ 114.5 Trillion Dollars

$114,500,000,000,000 – US unfunded liabilities
To the right you can see the pillar of cold hard $100 bills that dwarfs the WTC & Empire State Building – both at one point world’s tallest buildings. If you look carefully you can see the Statue of Liberty. The 114.5 Trillion dollar super-skyscraper is the amount of money the U.S. Government knows it does not have to fully fund the Medicare, Medicare Prescription Drug Program, Social Security, Military and civil servant pensions. It is the money USA knows it will not have to pay all its bills.

If you live in USA this is also your personal credit card bill; you are responsible along with everyone else to pay this back. The citizens of USA created the U.S. Government to serve them, this is what the U.S. Government has done while serving The People.

The unfunded liability is calculated on current tax and funding inputs, and future demographic shifts in US Population.

Note: On the above 114.5T image the size of the base of the money pile is half a trillion, not $1T as on 15T image. The height is double. This was done to reflect the base of Empire State and WTC more closely.