Great Geek Job

I had seen a recent article about 8 things intelligent people, geeks and nerds need to work and I began to realize that my job has nearly all of them.  They’re pretty flexible as long as you get your work done, they have good benefits, most of us share our iTunes (legally on the local network) so we can jam while we work – though some of my co-worker’s collections are questionable, they let us work from home when we need to – the big winter storms we had for example, and they dress code is pretty lax.  Plus it’s a small company, so you pretty much know everyone else and I can’t name one person that I don’t like.

So if you’re a developer looking for a great company, feel free to come on over.  We could use the help and we’re definitely going places.  You won’t be sorry you did.

Random Tidbit:  I found an interesting article about how Microsoft is dead after fighting with a Vista box that wouldn’t behave (or maybe it was and the behavior it’s supposed to have is illogical, who know’s right now.)  This article takes a different slant than others in that they still make a lot of money, but they’re no longer the big scary monster they used to be – Google is – and the only way to get back up there is to acquire a lot of the top quality startups.  Pretty interesting.

Future Site – 3rd Set in Time Spiral Block

I have been meaning for awhile to expand my thoughts to one of my other favorite hobbies besides web design – Magic the Gathering.  I have been collecting and playing since 1997 and up until recently I could say with confidence that the Uzra’s Block was by far my favorite.  I might have to change that with the new Time Spiral block.  I have been very impressed with the cards they brought back and even more so with the last set, Planar Chaos, and the cards they shifted – red Giant Growths, black Wrath of Gods, etc.  They just started previewing Future Sight, the last set in the block and it looks to be just as awesome.

While Time Spiral was about bringing back old cards and Planar Chaos about shifting those cards in new and interesting ways this new site looks towards the future of Magic.  The Future Is Now previews a very interesting new card Fleshwrither with the new ability transfigure.  They also let out that it will be the only card in the set with that ability.  It has some pretty interesting possibilities – the most obvious being you could sacrifice him as a blocker, pay the cost, then switch out for another more powerful card.  Since they don’t swap the new creature will be unharmed.

The author also talks about nostalgia and I have felt a lot of that during this set.  I have also had several cool new deck ideas that have come to mind especially with the planar chaos cards.  The ability to use effects in other colors that didn’t previously exist (at least in abundance) – like white direct damage – opens up new possibilities.  It also allows you to expand on new ideas by doubling the amount of cards you can have that do essentially the same thing.  One example?  Essence and Soul Warden.  Instead of the normal 4 of that creature, you can have 8.  They also have a red version of Prodigal Sorcerer who’s name escapes me right now – imagine having 8 of those in a deck.  Possibly 12 if you include the merfolk that does the same thing.  Pretty powerful especially combined with a card like Intruder Alarm.

I plan to have more thoughts on deck ideas, new cards and maybe even a few lists of my own decks soon.

Random Tidbit:  This is from awhile back and may have been too preemptive for it’s own good but I found an article entitled “It’s Official: PS3 is a dud for Sony.”  I have not seen the PS3 in action but nothing I’ve heard has impressed me.  Most of the games that would attract me to them are no longer exclusive.  I definitely think that I will be jumping ship again this generation to XBox 360 and maybe Wii later on.  I don’t think I would invest in a PS3 even if the price dropped considerably.  I think Sony has finally gone one step too far and alienated the consumer.  At least in my case they have.

Ranking in Google

I pulled an article from my feeds the other day from SEOmoz that was very interesting.  Basically, it’s a discussion and compilation of what is important SEO-wise for sites from 37 of the top people in the field.  For those of us who can’t afford our own search engine marketers and/or don’t have a lot of experience separating the myths from the facts it was very eye opening.  It confirmed a lot of what I had believed and implemented, as well as adding some new ideas to my head.

It is a rather long article, so I’ve compiled a sort of top 10 list of things that they found to be extremely important.  These are not in order of importance.  All factors are taken from the article and are attributed to SEOmoz.  Summaries are provided for convenience by BogeyWebDesign.

  1. Page title tag – using keywords in your title tag not only shows up in results but is likely one of, if not the, highest ranking SEO element.  Christine Churchill said it best: “If you have time to do only one SEO action on your site, take the time to create good titles.” One interesting negative factor is repetition of title on many pages – keep your titles as page specific as possible.
  2. Link popularity of site – incoming links, both in quality and quantity.  It also talks about sub-categorizing this further as links inbound from high ranking sites in your niche also help.
  3. Age of site – not when registered but from the date of first index by search engines.  Google especially factors this in with regards to trust.
  4. Anchor text of inbound links – the text around the links coming to your site.  Has started to depreciate though according to their experts.
  5. Keyword use in body text – how much the search term appears in your actual content.
  6. Relationship of content to keyword – how much your content actually matches those keywords.  This could also hurt you if you pull in for a keyword but don’t support it – in the case of spammers putting high use keywords to pull in for say selling ED medicine.
  7. Keyword Use in H1 Tag – the trick is to avoid too much repetition of keywords.  Perhaps a broader one in your title, with more meaty relevant content around the keyword in the H1 tag.
  8. Topical Relevance of Inbound Links – do inbound links to your site focus on a similar topic.  Again, building link popularity in your niche.
  9. Link Popularity of Site in Topical Community – another factor they rated high that relates to being popular and relevant in your niche.
  10. Rate of New Inbound Links to Site – how often do people link to your site.  The more popular you are, the more relevant you likely are to the subject.

So it seems that not only should you build a key site, but by becoming a player in your niche/topic – through white hat tactics – you will gain more credibility.  It makes sense.  For example, when you google “css” one of the top links is the CSS Zen Garden.  What is that site known for?  Revolutionizing the use of CSS on the web.  And most sites that have content on CSS likely link to them one or more times.  I probably have a dozen if not more links to that one site on mine.

The bottom line?  Design a clean, relevant site with keywords prominently displayed in the right places – title tag, H1’s – and work to become a resource to other sites in your niche as well as people who might be searching the web for that content.

Random Tidbit: Also on SEOmoz is a nice tool to help you see the page strength of your site SEO-wise.  I used it on my site and between that and the article have already taken steps to strengthen my site including changing my homepage title tag and trying to get my site re-indexed – especially considering I’ve added dozens of pages of new content.  I think I might delete my old blog since repetition issues might be the case.

5 WordPress Plugins Everyone Should Use

I’ve finally started to get my site up and running and have been actively searching for various plugins to enhance my site. So far, I’ve come up with a short list that anyone should start with in order to have the basic functionality – for yourself or a client – without paying a lot from a hosting company or anyone else to have them.

  1. Akismet – because of the good code, SEO-wise, that WordPress generates you get a lot of traffic. Unfortunately, that means you get a lot of bad traffic too – including comment spam. A must have.
  2. Google Analytics – a simple google account and you have access to all the advanced stats you could ever want or need – does any more really need to be said?
  3. Google Sitemap Generator – with the same google account you can generate an XML sitemap – that will dynamically re-create itself and notify Google everytime you add a post – that will allow the 3 major search engines to index your entire site easier.
  4. Share This – nearly every social bookmarking site known to man is included, as well as a feature for people to e-mail your site/post/page to friends. Easily allow your users to index your site for you with popular sites like and get traffic from sites like digg and reddit.
  5. Add Meta Tags – although less important for SEO, this plugin lets you dynamically generate keyword and description metatags based upon your categories and the content of your post.

Random Tidbit: Excellent article on five principles to design by.