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Publish Your Blog / Site in 51 Languages

My readers are predominantly English speakers, as evidenced by this distribution chart:

Readers by Language - http://sheet.zoho.com

I suspect the 87% English-speaking majority may be exaggerated.  It’s based on the browser’s default language setting, which many don’t bother changing.

Anyway, for the sake of the min. 13%, but who knows, perhaps 20, 25% (?) I’ve installed Google’s Translator.  You can do it too.smile_wink Readers then can select a language from the widget,  but the real use case is for visitors whose default browser language is non-English: they will get a bar at the top asking if they would like all content served up in their language.

Machine translation still has rough edges, but it has come a long way, and is generally good enough to give readers an idea of what an article is all about – just forget grammar and style:-)

Here’s an example of this post in a few languages:

arito pumunta kami ulit: Ed Bott points out kung paano marahas ito ay para sa Apple na i-install ang tinatawag na “update” sa iPhone Configuration Utility sa isang Windows computer na hindi magkaroon ng software na ito na naka-install, sa katunayan isa na ay hindi kailanman nagkaroon ng iPhone o iPod konektado sa.

在這裡 , 我們又來了: 埃德博特指出 , 如何荒謬的是 , 蘋果電腦將安裝所謂的“更新”的iPhone配置實用程序在Windows計算機上沒有安裝此軟件,其實一個從未有過的iPhone或iPod connected to.

Ở đây, chúng tôi đi một lần nữa: Ed Bott chỉ ra như thế nào thái nó là Apple để cài đặt cái gọi là “cập nhật” vào Configuration Utility iPhone trên một máy tính Windows mà không có phần mềm này được cài đặt, trong thực tế, một trong đó có không bao giờ có một iPhone hoặc iPod kết nối đến.

(I’m sure it’s right, whatever it says. smile_shades)

Update:  Here’s something I missed, but Sandy Kemsley didn’t:

If you read this, or other Google Translate-enabled blogs in Google Reader, you can set it to auto-translate there.  Neat.

Related posts:

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Forbes Gaffe: Prints Private Chat Between AP Reporters. How to Correct Online Publications.

The Forbes Gaffe

Ok, now that I got your attention with the title, this is about more than Forbes’ Royal Gaffe. But first things first: Forbes mistakenly printed a “story”, (update: original deleted, see saved copy) which isn’t a story but private chat between two AP reporters, and should not have been published at all (hat tip: Mathew Ingram):

Associated Press

Swiss arrest Polanski on US request in sex case

Associated Press, 09.27.09, 10:41 AM EDT

i checked already, and so did zurich. they say the question is irrelevant. he answered me with the quote i used, about we knew when he was coming this time. he’s been here many times in the past, we think.

thx brad. aptn is aware, but unfortunately won’t make it in time, but is hoping to catch tail end.

i’m pushing out another writethru with some more background details before press conference.

no surprise, new york is really hot on this.

they particularly want to know why now. (has he never set foot in switzerland before?) sheila, theorizes that’s because they’re under intense pressure over ubs and want to throw the U.S. a bone, but can yo ucheck with justice department sources there?

is frank around too, or are you alone?

u can tell aptn press conf 1700 (15 gmt) in bern at the parliament

i’ll watch it live on internet

Clearly, somebody at Forbes / AP must be sleeping, since the “article” is still online after a full day – but let’s assume they will wake up and remove it, so I’ve  saved it on Zoho Viewer.  But let’s use this opportunity to discuss something more important.

Airbrushing Online Articles After the Fact

I borrowed that title from Jeff Nolan who discusses the case of The Washington Post materially changing an article after the fact, without notification:

It’s one thing to correct references or relevant facts but to materially change entire sections of an article is alarming and undermines the central argument that newspapers themselves make about why they are essential systems of record for society.

The record of an event is only changing as the timeline plays out and new facts and arguments emerge, which may serve to invalidate previous reporting and in that case should be noted as new content, not airbrushing of already published content. At the very least a record of corrections should append each online story when necessary rather than flagrant material editing of content done “under the cover of darkness”.

Newspapers must recognize that the public trust they cherish is at risk whenever they rewrite an article that is already published online.

I fully agree with Jeff, in fact, let’s just extend it to any form of online publication, including blogs.  For minor changes we can always use there is always good old strikethrough. Of course if you do it a lot your text becomes unreadable, so for more changes, the right approach is to indicate the change and list the previous version of the story.

But wait!  We already have the technology to automate this!  Wikis are known for full version control and trackability, any Wikipedia reader can follow how much-edited article took shape by clicking on previous releases.  The WordPress editor has for a while offered rolling back to previous releases – but that’s just for the blog author.

Here’s a simple proposal:

Make version control available to readers. I don’t mean the tiny edits while you shape up your thoughts.  There should be a check-mark for “major edit”, and if you click it, it should cause a “Previous releases of this story” link to appear in a prominent place, at the top or bottom of each article.

This would go a long mile toward improving blogs’ credibility (and yes, newspapers can do it, too).   Oh, and just to clarify: I’m discussing content change here.  The Forbes story is different, it was a mistake, and I fully agree it should be removed when (if) Forbes / AP wakes up. (Update: they did.)

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That’s a Report I Like to See

Courtesy of site24x7 by Zoho.  Thanks to my host, PressHarbor.

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pubsubhubbub … yaba daba do … whatever. And Fast RSS.

Would you believe pubsubhubbub is a name of a real service by none other than Google?  Here’s the skinny… and all I can add is  yaba daba do.

TGIF. :-)

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Startup CEO Who “Won’t Take VC Abuse” Is Now a VC Himself and Blogs About Both Sides of the Table.

Valleywag  named Mark Suster, then CEO of Koral “one entrepreneur who won’t just take VC abuse”  for his blog post  “slamming one VC partnership for tardiness, inadequate preparation, and bad Blackberry manners.”  That was late 2006…

Not long after the “incident” his startup, Koral received funding, which, in hindsight was probably unnecessary: a few months later, barely out with a beta product Koral got acquired by Salesforce.com.

A few months later the “anti-VC” (not really) CEO has become a VC Partner himself.

Read more

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I’m a Guardian. Or Scientist. Or Executive. Or a Doer – Says Typealyzer

I ran  CloudAve, my main Blog Editor gig through Typealyzer, a service that analyzes written text and guesses which Myer-Briggs Personality Type the author represents, and it found we were Rocket Scientist.  Ok, forget the Rocket part, just scientists:smile_wink

INTJ – The Scientists

The long-range thinking and individualistic type. They are especially good at looking at almost anything and figuring out a way of improving it – often with a highly creative and imaginative touch. They are intellectually curious and daring, but might be physically hesitant to try new things.

The Scientists enjoy theoretical work that allows them to use their strong minds and bold creativity. Since they tend to be so abstract and theoretical in their communication they often have a problem communicating their visions to other people and need to learn patience and use concrete examples. Since they are extremely good at concentrating they often have no trouble working alone.

Typealyzer also prints a chart depicting what part of the brain was active during writing:

Of course it’s not that simple: CloudAve is a multi-author blog, and we’re getting some sort of an aggregate personality here, so let’s do some further testing.

One of our guest bloggers is Bruce Henry, whose formal title is Director of Rocket Science (no kidding!) at Liquid Planner.  If anyone, he should be seen as a (Rocket) Scientists – let’s see if Typealyzer agrees:

The analysis indicates that the author of http://www.cloudave.com/author/brucephenry is of the type:  INTJ – The Scientists.

So far so good – but Bruce writes his own blog, Bruce’s Brain – hey, a Rocket Scientist spills his brain, it sure must be seen as a Scientist:

The analysis indicates that the author of http://www.brucephenry.com/ is of the type: ISTJ – The Duty Fulfillers
[ISTJ]
The responsible and hardworking type. They are especially attuned to the details of life and are careful about getting the facts right. Conservative by nature they are often reluctant to take any risks whatsoever.

The Duty Fulfillers are happy to be let alone and to be able to work int heir own pace. They know what they have to do and how to do it.

Ouch… this is crazy.  Let’s play more, run several CloudAve author pages through the mills:  Ben – Scientist (really?smile_wink), Krish – Scientist, Espen – Scientist, Eran – Scientist, Devan – Scientist (wow, are we all?), Julian – Scientist (gee, he is a CEO, should he not be the Executive Type?), Paul – Scientist, Mayank – ENTJ – Executive (Wow!!!),  Sameer – Scientist (Gee, his bio pic shows him with a guitar, but he is a scientist…).  Dan, who on two other blogs found himself Duty Fulfiller and Executive, comes out as Scientist, too.

With all these Scientists around, I wonder what my profile is … drumroll:

ESTJ – The Guardians

The organizing and efficient type. They are especially attuned to setting goals and managing available resources to get the job done. Once they have made up their mind on something, it can be quite difficult to convince otherwise. They listen to hard facts and can have a hard time accepting new or innovative ways of doing things.
The Guardians are often happy working in highly structured work environments where everyone knows the rules of the job. They respect authority and are loyal team players.

OMG!  While I guess the job of Editor-in-Chief is partly to be a Guardian, I know for a fact I am neither very organized, or efficient (unfortunately).  And highly structure work environments, rules, authority?   Geez, abhoring all those was the very reason I turned my back to a corporate career almost a decade ago.  In fact, as I often semi-jokingly claim, the only thing that still qualifies me to be member of the illustrious industry group Enterprise Irregulars is the irregular part.smile_tongue   But let’s see what Typealyzer says about my personal blog, where I’ve posted 1435 articles in the past 3 years:

ISTJ – The Duty Fulfillers

The responsible and hardworking type. They are especially attuned to the details of life and are careful about getting the facts right. Conservative by nature they are often reluctant to take any risks whatsoever.
The Duty Fulfillers are happy to be let alone and to be able to work int heir own pace. They know what they have to do and how to do it.

Wow, that does not sound like me, either. (Update: Duty Fulfillers was the type I got when I started this post an hour ago.  I just ran the test again, and now it says Guardian – nothing changed on my blog since the first run)

OK, enough of the testing.  Here’s a question to Typealyzer: how deep do you go into a blog?  On this blog, which is huge, it spit out the results so fast, it could not have possibly processed it all. In fact picking random months of my archive, I was able to receive any of these assessments:

  • ISTJ – The Duty Fulfillers
  • ESTP – The Doers
  • ENTJ – The Executive
  • ESTJ – The Guardians
  • INTJ – The Scientists

I suspect the analyses only extends to a few posts.  Now, that conclusion is somewhat clobbered by the fact I received two different assessments for the very same main blog page – that brings in an element of randomness I can not explain.

Finally, a little bit of unsolicited advice to the folks @ http://www.prfekt.se/, who brought us Typealyzer: you’re being discovered, stepping out on the international market.  You should have a blog – this thing is unreadable.  And if you choose to provide support through a Google Group, perhaps it’s time to move to an English-speaking one.

(This post is a slightly edited version of the original first published @ CloudAve.  To stay abreast of Clod Computing, SaaS news and analysis, grab the CloudAve feed here.) 

 

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How I Beat TechCrunch for the Second Time

First time I beat TechCrunch was in July 2006:

…their Feedburner subscription base grew almost 100% overnight.  But it pales in comparison to my 2.5million % growth rate … yes, I went from 200 or so to 51k.   Jeff Clavier did quite well, too, at 56k, but hey Jeff, I am catching up!

 

Too bad it was due to a Netvibes glitch, and once they fixed it, my readership fell back to – well, normal levels.

Today I am winning again:   TechCrunch has 0 –yes zero – subscribers, while I have 1141. smile_wink

This time the culprit is Feedburner, which chucked the subscriber stats to zero for many blogs, including TechCrunch, while I lucked out, and only “lost” about half my subscribers. Over @ CloudAve we were less lucky, the migration to Google’s new setup cost about 85% of our subscriber base, but that still beats zero…

Yet it’s a Pyrrhic victory, which I hope won’t last – Feedburner (Google) needs to pull their act together.

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Moved: Feedburner Migration With Glitches

Feedburner started as a cool new blog feed management/reporting service a few years ago, and quickly became a de facto standard.  A quick scan of my Feed Reader shows hardly anything but Feedburner.  Since Google acquired the company almost two years ago, we haven’t seen a lot of new services – but that does not change the almost monopoly status.  Feedburner rules the market, and I’m no exception.

A few months ago Google started to migrate accounts – first only those who wanted to run Adsense in their feeds.  Since I don’t care for advertising, I did not bother first, but knew the day would come: the final deadline is February 28th, but anyone can move to the new servers on their own schedule. 

Seeing all the negative buzz on Twitter I was planning to wait – but then I “lost” 70% of my subscribers even with the old setup, so I figured I might as well take the plunge. And here it is now: a shiny, brand new (old) feed @ http://feeds2.feedburner.com/zoli

Google says (FAQ) the stats will “recover” in about a week.  Funny thing is, the one service entirely missing from the reports is Google’s very own Reader.  I certainly hope this “loss” is only in the stats, and readers are receiving our feed without interruption.   If you are, you don’t have to do anything, the old Feedburner URL will continue to be redirected, says Google.  Then again, if you’re cautious (like I am), or perhaps are not following our feed yet, you might as well grab the new feed here.

Either way, thanks for reading my Blog.

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Is There a New Twitter to Blog Spam Bot?

An older post, If Scoble Thinks He Found Bad Startup Marketing, He Ain’t Seen Nothing received several comments, all showing the same structure, pointing back to Twitter accounts – some are clearly spam accounts with only this one update, but others appear to be real users, although I am not following any of them.

lbfd (LBFD) | January 13th, 2009 at 6:58 pm e

This is a test.

(This appears to be a spam account with no real content.)

aleslie2 (Art Leslie) | January 13th, 2009 at 7:59 pm e

Hmmm … tweet completely disappeared. This is a test.

(This appears to be a real account.)

bisfourbritt (bisfourbritt) | January 13th, 2009 at 9:52 pm e

This is a test. Nd it ends with no friends. We will go on…..untl it hurts

Zonin with loud shit tonightt hah

(This appears to be a real account.)

radiomanmic (Michael Grider) | January 13th, 2009 at 11:28 pm e

This is a test. Don’t mind me, I’m just passing through.

(This appears to be a real account.)

deborahgtaylor (deborahgtaylor) | January 14th, 2009 at 6:10 am e

Is going to Brenham for a quilting lesson. This is a test.

(This appears to be a real account.)

cineola (cineola) | January 14th, 2009 at 7:14 am e

This is a test.

(This appears to be a spam account with no real content.)

Is there some new Twitter-to-Blog spam bot that I am not aware of?

Update:   There’s more now, on another post:

lbfd (LBFD) | January 13th, 2009 at 6:58 pm e

This is a test.

aleslie2 (Art Leslie) | January 13th, 2009 at 7:59 pm e

Hmmm … tweet completely disappeared. This is a test.

bisfourbritt (bisfourbritt) | January 13th, 2009 at 9:52 pm e

This is a test. Nd it ends with no friends. We will go on…..untl it hurts

Zonin with loud shit tonightt hah

radiomanmic (Michael Grider) | January 13th, 2009 at 11:28 pm e

This is a test. Don’t mind me, I’m just passing through.

deborahgtaylor (deborahgtaylor) | January 14th, 2009 at 6:10 am e

Is going to Brenham for a quilting lesson. This is a test.

cineola (cineola) | January 14th, 2009 at 7:14 am e

This is a test.

sztelzer (Rodrigo Sztelzer) | January 14th, 2009 at 11:18 am e

Só bebo tequila. This is a test.This is a test.
http://tinyurl.com/7jww4a Só beberei tequila.

In the meantime I disabled the Tweetbacks WordPress Plugin, which had not properly installed anyway, to see if it has anything to do with the attack.

UpdateFollow-up thoughts @ CloudAve.

Related posts:

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Credit Crunch Has Reached Bloggers

The Credit Crunch has reached the Blogosphere: it is now a WordPress Theme by Ericulous, developer of the lightweight theme I use here.

I have not found a "Recession" WordPress theme (yet), but there is one called Depression.smile_omg