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Showing posts from November, 2008

November 2008: Monthly Post Recap

Enabling More Than Five Feed Items in Blogger Feed Gadget With FeedBurner

In the normal Blogger feed widget on the sidebar, you know that when you put in the feed URL, it fetches only the latest five articles. In this short post, we will see a workaround to enable more entries (10 or 20) in this feed using FeedBurner.

If your feed is not burnt with FeedBurner (FB), go ahead and do it. Make sure your original feed URL doesn't have any restriction on the number of posts, because, if it restricts posts to 5 (as in my feed; see why I did so), this tweak will not work. For instance, the normal feed URL of Blogger feed is like this:
"". In its place, if you put this URL, "" it will not show more than 5 posts.

Here are the steps to enable this tweak

Step 1: FeedBurner Dashboard

Go to FeedBurner dashboard for your feed and choose Buzz Boost from the Publicize tab. This feature enables displaying your feed as a HTML file anywhere throug…

Syndicating Topic-Specific RSS Feeds to Your Readers

If you have a publication like mine, you may be addressing a number of topics/categories. And some of your readers may be interested in only one of these topics. They may wish that they got only posts on 'creative writing' or 'blogging tips'. In professional publications like news sites and blogs like the Huffington Post, you have the option to subscribe to posts related to specific topics. Here, we will show you how you can enable this on your Blogger blog, with label syndication.

Make sure that your blog has enabled feed syndication and supports labels (which we call categories/topics).

For feed syndication settings, go to Site Feed under your blog's settings; labels are enabled whenever you put in keywords at the label text field while publishing new posts. The tweak involves syndicating content published under specific labels.

The following is the feed for a specific label:

In this URL, replace both b…

Fifteen Major SEO (Search Engine Optmization) Myths: You May Make a Fool of Yourself If You Follow Them!

Google and various other SEO experts have from time to time talked about various things in search engine optimization that you no longer have to worry about. Here are the most common myths in SEO.

1. You have to submit your site to hundreds of directories and search engines

You may occasionally receive emails from emerging SEO firms and freelancers talking about their private analysis of your web page and how you stand in search rankings (pure spam emails). They may tell you that your page is not indexed in many of the major search engines and they can help you get indexed.

Before acting upon these lures, think twice. It's not going to give you any advantage. Google holds 63 per cent of the browser market share. 20+ per cent is held by Yahoo and about 8 per cent by Live search. The other smaller search engines like Altavista, Ask, AOL, etc., hold the rest. Therefore, getting into these top three search engines is all that really matters.

You don't really need to get indexed in…

The FaceTV: Facebook Opens Doors to Full-length Television Series, the Full List Here!

It's completely video revolution now, after YouTube's move to HD technology and widening their screen size, it's Facebook that upgrades its video reach.

Facebook announced its decision to go completely television-friendly with the inception of a new series of applications that will enable full-length television series viewing on Facebook. Many popular shows like The Simpsons, Two and a Half Men, Grey's Anatomy, etc., are there.

Facebook's "new generation of applications", TV Loop 'Addicted to' and Mesmo TV, enable this feature.

Sad news is that the direct streaming from television channels and the video sites is available only to the US residents, not outsiders.

Here is the complete list of programs with link to the application. Click and add to your Facebook account to watch these shows:

Grey's AnatomyThe SimpsonsTwo and a Half Men (My favorite)Family GuyHeroesThe OfficeERHouseHow I Met Your MotherNCISDesperate HousewivesUgly BettySupernatural

ClickBank Enabling Adsense-like Context-Specific Ads for Their Publisher Products: Make More Money From ClickBank

The latest news from ClickBank will rock both the affiliates and advertisers. On 18th this month, ClickBank announced its new ad serving network, just like Google Adsense that will help affiliates promote context-specific CB products through a CB widget they can place on their websites. Affiliate networks like Pepperjam Network already has this feature.

Though, right now the ad serving hasn't started, advertisers can create and maintain their own ads for their products. If you are a CB advertiser, click here to create your ad that will link to your product(s). See below to see how a typical ad will look.

This first phase of the ad-serving platform will help publishers create three lines of text for better describing their products. Once this first phase is completed, the advertisements will be included into the CB Marketplace XML feed, and will roll out the ad-serving platform for affiliates.

This means, if you are an affiliate, you will be able to have a CB widget that will displ…

Importance of Themes in Blog's Success: DIY's Thesis Theme

[Sponsor Content]

[See at the bottom to get the code to get the Thesis theme at 20 per cent reduced price]

If you have built a new WordPress blog and hosted it on your own domain, then definitely it means you want to succeed in blogging. But did you know how important search engine optimization is for the success of a blog. Let's say you promote a few affiliate programs or have Google Adsense ads on your site. Without enough visitors, these ads are of no use to you. The basic tactics of SEO include link building (off-page) and on page SEO. Here we have the only theme best optimized for on page SEO factors: The DIY Themes's Thesis (Edit: The low price is long gone!)

Click Here to purchase.

Importance of On Page SEO

However important off page SEO is, on-page mistakes can invalidate all that. For instance, if you have a blog that has a great number of links, but its link structure, content optimization (H1 tags, bolding of important keywords, and more), are not good enough, however h…

Check Your Website's Size and Speed With LinkVendor

Checking and limiting size of a web page within an optimal limit is very important for SEO, since search bots will then be able to access your pages and follow links faster. Here is the place to test your entire web page size. The LinkVendor page size checker, unlike normal page size checkers, looks at the images, external files, etc., to determine the total browser download size of a web page.

Go here to check your website's size: LinkVendor Page Speed Checker

Copyright © Lenin Nair 2008

Conditional Forms of Verb: Guidelines for Using Them Correctly

Here are some sentences:

If I got the first class, I would go and join a Medicine program.
If I had worked hard, I could have got through in the examination.
If I work hard, I will definitely pass this time.

These examples show three different forms of conditional verbs. The first one is an improbable (unreal) condition, second, an impossible condition and the third, probable (real) condition.

Now, we will see where to use which.

Real (Probable Condition)

This condition has a result happening in the future, based any present event. This is called real condition because there is every probability for it to happen. The first part of the condition (the condition status/if part) is usually expressed in the present simple form, and the result part is expressed in future simple. Examples:

If Mark is home, I will pay him a visit.
Joe will be here any moment, if the traffic is smooth.
The systems will work just fine, if you follow my instructions.

In some situations, the real condition can have …

My Recommendations for Google to Help Them Fight Web Spam in Their Index

[This Is an Important Post for You; See the Conclusion]

As the days pass by, web spam is on the rise. Even Google's inimitable algorithm to rank the worthiest content seems to fail at times. It's why we miss a lot of great information due to the mere lack of enough backlinks or funds to place advertisements, and get a lot of spammy links on the first few search result pages. With the world's most popular search engine at their hand, Google is an information hub. It has been given the ultimate power by God to make or break any business today. That's why spending a lot of money on this search engine is more and more important.

As Uncle Ben says (and so far one of my most loved quotes): "With Great Power Comes Great Responsibility", Google has an enormous responsibility on their shoulders. In this case, helping them improve their index and remove more spam content from the web is a responsibility for every individual. Here are my recommendations to Google and th…

Why Do You Need an Email Spam Filter (Antispam)?

Earlier last week, we saw the downfall of the giant spammer, McColo Corporation. Recently, also, a study conducted by the researchers at the University of California, UC, San Diego, and Berkeley shows some spamming stats. They infiltrated a major botnet, a zombie network of attacked personal computers, held as a network for promoting spam messages world over.

But the findings as reported by BBC suggest that the earnings from millions of spam emails sent every month may not be really profitable for the spammers—12 million spam messages earning just over 100 dollars per day? Why, then, still they engage in this?

Reports suggest that Microsoft may be the next big spammer. Spamhaus organization that tracks a huge percentage of worldwide email spam messages point to the fact that Microsoft is rising up among the major spamming ISPs in the world. Here is the latest list (The Spamhaus top ten):

CNC Group

Which Is the Best Offline Feed Reader?

Over the last few days, I was running a poll here to find which the best offline feed reader is. Out of the enormous responses I received, I found the most popular software among the readers. Here are the results with reviews of each feed aggregator.

The products in the poll were: RSSReader, FeedReader, FeedDemon, Awasu, NewZie, BlogBridge, and others.

Total number of votes: 1005

RSSReader: 34 % of the votes with 340 votes
FeedReader: 25 % with 255 votes
FeedDemon: 10 % with 102 votes
Awasu: 8 % with 85 votes
NewZie: 8 % with 84 votes
BlogBridge: 7 % with 68 votes
Others: 7 % with 71 votes

Features of These Feed Readers


Hands down, RSSReader is the king among offline feed readers. Most of the users find it very valuable. This is a free software that had almost 2 million downloads. The latest version of this lightweight software also works with Microsoft Windows Vista. It is supported under these versions of MS Windows: 98, NT, ME, 2000, XP, 2003, Vista.

RSSReader requires you to downl…

Google's New SearchWiki: A Cool New Search Rollout

Google's new SearchWiki feature is not yet available to all users, well at least not to me. Yesterday, its official announcement happened (at the bottom), with this attached video:

SearchWiki allows you to deeply customize your search results in Google, while logged into your account. You can add or remove any results, move up or down any of the displayed results, and create notes on any of them. This helps greatly improve your work efficiency: another major reason why you should use Google search.

How to use it (another video):

The customized results will always be available whenever you search for the same query.

Effect on Social Bookmarking

I had tested this feature when it was available in the Google Labs as experimental. And my review is entirely positive about it. It's a potential Delicious killer. It can in the long-run kill all major social bookmarking services. Why you use bookmarking is to keep a record of all URLs that you want to track. But with this feature, you can…

Split Infinitives: Should or Shouldn't You Avoid Them?

Look at this sentence:
Jim tried to carefully talk to his friends about the mishap, but he failed miserably.
This sentence uses an awkward grammatical construction called a split infinitive—one in which the adverb (carefully) splits the infinitive (to talk). That sentence looks rather weird due to the use of it. Here other examples:

Sarah, I have to firmly ask you to go out.
The shower trickled as a first step to slowly run out.
Why Should You Avoid It?

You obviously wouldn't say: "I have to hard work to achieve my ambition", when you mean "I have to work hard to achieve my ambition". Here, the word 'hard' is the adverb modifying 'work'. Using a split infinitive in this case looks rather awkward.

So definitely, you have to avoid split infinitives in your writing. Several grammarians today argue that split infinitives are no longer a mistake, or it is a myth that split infinitive is a mistake. But good writers should definitely avoid sentences like …

Google Adwords Search-based Keyword Suggestion Tool: A Review

Yesterday, Google announced its latest tool on keyword targeting, the Adwords Search-based Keyword Tool, right now available as Beta release to all advertisers in the US and the UK. This keyword suggestion tool takes into account the search queries Google has on its main search site and other various regional sites, and optimizes this data for your Adwords advertisement campaigns. This tool is important not only to the Adwords users, but also to others, who run websites without advertising. We will have a review of this tool in this post.

What Is The Search-based Keyword Tool? How Is It Different From the Adwords Keyword Tool?

Search-based Keyword tool gives keywords and landing page ideas based on your website URL and your existing Adwords campaigns. It generates suggestions based on the anonymous data on the searches made on as well as other subsidiaries like

Unlike the normal, Google Adwords Keyword tool, the search-based keyword tool gives the bid suggestio…

Promote Your Twitter Profile With Me!

Following someone on Twitter shouldn't only be for self-promotion. If you need to make it profitable, you can learn a little bit about twittering to make affiliate sales here. My advice is to follow me for the tweets I make, not to let me know the tweets you make. I don't usually follow anyone that follows me.

Why I Follow Whom I Follow?

1. They provide me with important updates.
2. They are good twitterers who are there not to promote their business alone.
3. People like Liz Strauss and Darren Rowse are so good twitterers that they reply to you however busy they are.
4. They also tweet good resourceful links that I will find useful.

Why Should You Follow Me?

1. I tweet useful articles
2. I read all my tweet replies nowadays and reply whenever I get a message.
3. You will find links to any interesting article I read.

When Will I Start Following You?

1. Tweet to me (@vjlenin), anything you find interesting. Take time to read through my tweets and @reply me if you find anything int…

The Spamming Hall of Shame! McColo Corporation's Fall Down and Recent Developments in Web Spam; How Can You Fight Spammers Effectively?

Internet and email spam is down for a week now due to the bringing down of one of the largest player in worldwide spam on November 12, by the astute interference of Washington Post's computer security expert blogger, Brian Krebs. The post made by Krebs on 12th about the criminal activities of California-based hosting firm, McColo Corporation first attracted my attention to this. I had been tracking how the spam was going on these days, and I am happy to see it has been considerably low. The worldwide spam rate has come down an astounding 75 per cent due to the mere shutdown of this corporation that housed such things as spam bot networks (botnets) in its server.

The Bringing Down of the Spam Giant

In this timeline, we will see what exactly happened and what role Mr Krebs played in bringing down McColo.

Security Fix, the blog managed by Krebs, has been tracking the activities of McColo corp for the last four months. McColo's team includes the most disreputable cyber-criminals in …

How to Make a Great Amount of Money Writing Online: Some Tips

Freelancing online isn't easy. Quite a bit of thought and planning goes into it, and it is a long-term process. But a well-built freelancing career means a lot. It can get you not only permanent writing jobs earning you high amounts of money, but also jobs in newspapers as citizen freelance journalists. Here are some tips to earn high amount of money writing online.

1. Keep These Resources Ready for Reference

If you wish to get a great freelancing job, then here some resources you should check out. These invaluable links are updated daily with new freelancing jobs. You should be able to find great writing opportunities through them. Subscribe to their RSS/Atom feeds.

Freelancing/Blogging Job Boards

PoeWar Writing Job RSS Feed: Updated daily with new writing jobs
Blogger Jobs: A great resource for blogging jobs.
Writers Weekly: Another great resource for writing projects
Problogger Job Boards: Gives feeds for blog network jobs, co-blogging, corporate/business blogging, podcasting, etc.