Off to Webstock 2013 : Expect Postcards of Joy

webstock-logo-smlSo tomorrow I’m heading off to Windy Wellington once again to experience the geek love-in that is Webstock.

The last time I punched my timecard in at Webstock was in 2011 and it literally made me rethink my life and my business direction. After chatting with some of the speakers and attendees, I was totally inspired to creatively mess up my business model and take some risks. The notes I made during the plane trip home loom large on my laptop to this day.

Unfortunately, my post-conference euphoria (and renewed business confidence) was rudely interrupted by the Christchurch earthquake on 22 February.

It’s taken two years of emotional turmoil, financial hardship and physical displacement to get back some semblance of life, let alone confidence in myself and my business. The earthquake stole the passion I previously had for my industry, as well as my ability to write and educate. My interest waned, my writing ceased and I stopped going to conferences. I moved with my family to Australia and had to cancel a whole year of speaking engagements because of mental and physical displacement.

We moved back to Christchurch a year ago. I thought about attending Webstock 2012, but an empty wallet and empty heart conspired against me. Plus I knew I wasn’t in the right headspace to soak up the inspiration and actually DO something with it.

Well, fast forward a year. We are back in our Christchurch house, repairs are underway, the business is humming along and I am about to roll out some of the exciting concepts I came up with during that Webstock week of 2011.

Booking my ticket for Webstock 2013 was an absolute no-brainer. I feel great, the cobwebs are clearing and I am can’t wait to get amongst it and speak geek non-stop for 2 days.

Expect postcards of joy and inspiration from me for the next few days!

 

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Twitter Wins the US Election By a Landslide

Despite the final vote tally, Twitter was the clear winner of the 2012 US Presidential election.

No matter what your political bias, the Twitter feed for the past 24 hours has captured the highest and lowest points, the heckling, the gags, the tantrums and the vote count. Once again, Twitter was the place to be to get the most up to date vote tally as State by State fell to each of the candidates. With news agencies reporting inconsistent or biased results, confused voters turned to Twitter to get faster updates via the hashtags #Election2012, #USElection and #USAElection.

According to Twitter staff, election conversation saw Twitter reach a peak of 327,452 Tweets per minute this evening, with not a single Fail Whale in sight – something Twitter staff were extremely proud of.  The company has clearly improved on their server load contingency plan since the last election.

And just as well too, because newly re-elected President Obama (@BarackObama) chose Twitter as the medium for his first acknowledgements of victory:

President Obama claims victory on Twitter

More than half a million people retweeted President Obama’s victorious “Four More Years” photo tweet.

Four More Years for Obama

However, not everyone was happy with the election outcome. Outspoken Republican Donald Trump (@realdonaldtrump) surprised everyone with his vitriolic, bizarre and seemingly unpatriotic stream of tweets immediately following Obama’s victory:

Trump Tantrum

Possibly the most amusing point about this epic tantrum was Trump’s incorrect assumption that Romney had won the popular vote and that the world was laughing at America because of a miscarriage of democracy caused by the electoral college system.

The tweets highlighted with the green pepper were actually deleted from Trump’s feed within an hour of them being posted, suggesting that Trump’s minders may have stepped in to prevent him from further embarrassment.

Trump’s tantrum prompted a wave of hilarious responses from the Twitterverse, some of which are highlighted in the images below.

Trumps Tantrum Trumps All
But for those of us who stayed on Twitter during President Obama’s victory speech, the hilarity continued. About halfway during his speech, someone on Twitter pointed out that the woman in the crowd directly over the President’s left shoulder had decided to stick her US flag into her hair and was waving it about with great enthusiasm.

hairflag FTW

The gesture generated an instant Twitter meme, similar to the one NASA employee @tweetsoutloud prompted when his space-influenced mohawk was spotted on camera during the recent Mars Rover landing.

Within a minute or two, the hashtag #hairflag was born, with witty tweets temporarily hijacking responses to the President’s moving and heartfelt speech.

Hairflag wins best meme

I couldn’t resist a #hairflag tweet of my own! By the time President Obama walked offstage, the #hairflag meme was in full swing, with inspirational posters, Facebook pages and parody Twitter accounts.

So Election Day closes with 31 million tweets posted and Twitter a clear winner, once again. Hope you enjoyed it as much as I did.

 

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25 Percent Discount Coupon for Search Engine College

coupon code for Search Engine CollegeI just realised that I hadn’t yet shared this promotion on my blog so here we are.

If you’re a newsletter subscriber, you’ll know this already, but to celebrate the milestone of Search Engine College having enrolled students in 56 countries, we declared September to be Study Month. For the entire month of September, we have been offering a 25 Percent Discount on ALL our courses, including our popular multi-course Certification Pathways.

Study Month came about after the fantastic response to our CRAZY Day Sale in July. Many of our readers contacted us, asking if we could offer specials on courses other than our Search Engine Optimization Starter. We listened to your feedback and decided to celebrate Study Month with 25 PERCENT off any / all courses at Search Engine College.

You read correctly! If you order ANY course/s from us in September and use the Coupon Code – STUDYMONTH you will receive 25% off your shopping cart total. That’s 25 percent off the total amount in your cart, so the more courses you add, the more you save.

Remember – the coupon is only valid until midnight on 30 September 2012, but your course key is valid for 12 months from the first day you enter it, so even if you don’t have time to study now, you can lock in your savings and study when it suits you.

But you’ve got less than 72 hours to take advantage of the discount so get cracking before the coupon expires. Be sure to read the instructions for using the coupon.

Happy Savings!

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Google Delights Trekkies with Interactive Star Trek Doodle

Star Trek anniversary Google doodleAs soon as I laid eyes on today’s Google Doodle I knew it was going to be my favorite so far. I’m a huge Star Trek fan, so my heart started racing when I typed in Google.com and recognized the familiar uniforms from the Starship Enterprise adorning the letters in the GOOGLE logo. But it’s a far cry from your regular doodle. Today’s Google Doodle is a fully interactive game of sorts.

To mark the 46th anniversary of the iconic TV series Star Trek, Google has put together a really fun commemorative doodle. Ryan Germick, Google doodler and keen Trekkie, led a team of animators to create the multi-scene Star Trek animation to celebrate the show’s launch 46 years ago.Google Doodle Star Trek anniversary

My initial delight in spotting the doodle grew as I discovered the incorporated interactive elements. Clicking on highlighted areas of the Google logo triggers a series of tributes to iconic Star Trek episodes, including “The Trouble With Tribbles” and pilot episode “The Man Trap”, which aired on Sept. 8, 1966. Various letters from the Google logo play the crew of the starship Enterprise. Captain James T. Kirk is played by the central “o” in Google.

There are a few different scenes with various highlighted areas you can click on to make the scene play out. My favorite is the tribbles hiding in the ceiling of the Transporter Room. How many others can you find? After the final animation plays out, Google redirects you to search results for Star Trek the Original Series.

I declare this to be Google’s Best Doodle Ever!  You can watch a full video of the interactions below :

 

 

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Find Ms Parker July Competition

Hey guys

To spice things up a bit during what can be an otherwise boring time of year, we’re resurrecting the monthly Find Ms Parker competition on Search Engine Wiki.

Find Ms Parker is a good old fashioned hide and seek competition, with regular clues posted on our Facebook page and tweeted via @sewiki. Your task is to Find Ms Parker – our resident librarian – who is hiding on a page somewhere in our resources library at Search Engine Wiki. There’s a picture of her in this post so you know what she looks like.

It’s easy to win. Just find a pic of Ms Parker somewhere on Search Engine Wiki and tweet @sewiki with the page URL and *I found Ms Parker!* in your tweet, as well as the hashtag #FindMsParker so we can track it. If you don’t have a Twitter account, send the URL to us via our Contact Form and put *I found Ms Parker!* as your subject line.

The first person to find her and notify us as per the rules receives a training voucher to the value of USD395 to use towards any course/s at Search Engine College.

So what are you waiting for? Go find Ms Parker!

CLUE #1 : I keep a diary with entries typically displayed in reverse chronological order.

Update 2 July 2012: Ms Parker has been found! Congratulations to David Gall in Brisbane, who found her lurking here. Well done David, your training voucher will be sent out shortly.

 

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