Thursday, May 29, 2008

Twitter and your business

Whatever you may think of Twitter, it is here to stay. The time is now to start figuring out how to incorporate Twitter into your marketing strategy. If you wait much longer the opportunity will have passed and you will be forced to play catch-up. Twitter's business has doubled in the last six months to over one million users per month and the trend has just started.

Spend a little time to go to Twitter's site; open up an account; and get a feel of what exists.

You can search for a word or phrase at and

You can look for people at and

You can also download programs and follow Twitter from your desktop. Take a look at:

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

What separates Blogs from other Social Media?

The taxonomy of social media is complex. Social media usually refers to Facebook, LinkedIn, MySpace, Twitter and other sites. But in its widest sense social media can be any site that networks of people, including newsgroups, listservs and sites such as YouTube. YouTube is still primarily a file sharing site but with the addition of comments they are now more social media than file sharing sites.

Blogs are also part of on-line social networks but are different from the other social media sites in two ways. One person may have several blogs, each focusing upon a different topic but it rarely makes sense to have multiple Facebook or LinkedIn accounts. The second is the concept of time. In social media sites, such as Facebook and Twitter, it is the NOW that matters. Businesses may care to keep a record for legal purposes but most users rarely care about what was communicated 24 hours ago (if not 24 minutes ago). Whereas, with blogs, the continuity of posts matters. They are not focused upon the here and now.

All strategies used in attracting clients and consumers must focus first and foremost upon these two aspects, especially the concept of time.

Where's Dilbert when you need him?

What not to do.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Search Engines and Dynamic URLs: Part II

Adding to the previous post there are two additional potential problems when using dynamic URLs.

Search engines have problems indexing URLs that contain session IDs. I would only pass session IDs in the URL in areas of the site which are not to be indexed -- such as password protected areas or shopping cart pages.

Session IDs cause problems with the SE bots. The session variables are different each time the bot lands on a the "page," giving the impression that the page has a new URL every time it is visited. This appearnace of duplicate content causes numerous problems, simply put Session IDs must not be visible to search engine.

A second problem with Dynamic URLs come in parameter ordering. The coders must be careful to order the parameter the same way each time else the search engines will have to juggle which "url" to use to go to the same content.

All in all dynamic urls are fine as long as no session variables are used in indexed pages and if the coders are consistent with their parameter ordering.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Search Engines and Dynamic URLs

Too many people still think that search engines have trouble indexing dynamic URLs. For the most part this isn’t true. Search engines still have problems indexing URLs with more than three parameters. This happens because there are so many combinations that the bot gets stuck on the site and has to abort. This problem will lessen as computing power increases. In general URLs with one or two parameters provide no problems. They are spidered and indexed just fine.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Malicious Javascript and SQL injection attacks

From The H:

According to an analysis by Websense, the malware tries to exploit a total of eight security holes to pass malicious code to the visitors of the pages unnoticed, for example via the VML hole already patched in January 2007. F-Secure has monitored attackers who tried to break into .asp and .aspx web pages by submitting the page parameters in an encrypted SQL query:


Once decrypted, this is an SQL query designed to find all the text fields in the database behind the web page and inject JavaScript code into them:

DECLARE @T varchar(255)'@C varchar(255) DECLARE Table_Cursor CURSOR FOR select' from sysobjects a'syscolumns b where and a.xtype='u' and (b.xtype=99 or b.xtype=35 or b[...]

Both code snippets are only the beginning of the request. Administrators of servers delivering .asp or .aspx pages (like Microsoft's IIS) are advised to check their log files for similar entries and if necessary search their databases for injected links.

Ah, the ingenuity of mankind. It is impressive isn't it?