According to BlogPulse, there are now 150 million blogs on the Internet. And, that number is growing by 58,000 per day! What many people are discovering about having a blog is that traffic is not automatic. There are certain things we can do to increase the number of people who read our blog.
One of the best resources I have found is the Blog Success Manifesto from Erica Douglass. (Yes, it’s free. You can get it here.) Although there are millions of eBooks and blogs about getting more traffic, I found this one particularly good. There are quite a few reasons that I like this eBook.
Gold and silver started a massive bull market in 2001. There are many people who are aware of this. So we thought, what if there is a way to measure the interest in gold and silver? How could you quantify the desire and interest of millions of people?
After attempting to answer that question in a previous post, Can Google Trends Predict the Price of Gold?, the response from our readers was outstanding. So, here is a similar analysis on the price of silver. Look at the following chart.
The Price of Silver January 2004 - March 2010
Here is the search volume on Google Trends during the same period:
Price bubbles have been going on since the invention of markets by humans thousands of years ago. However, most people are completely oblivious to how they work, and how to profit from them.
Price of Crude Oil Jan 2004 - Feb 2010
Bubbles are simply the expression of widespread desire to own an asset, regardless of price. As the price goes up, more people find out about it and buy. This pushes the price up further, and still more people find out about it. It is a virtuous cycle.
Google just released Buzz, sort of a souped up Twitter. It’s an awesome idea, and as usual, Google has refined an existing idea to make it better.
First it was search, and Google made its first billion by dominating the search engine market with a better service. Yahoo and a dozen other search engines have faded into the background with the success of Google’s search algorithm. Then it was GMail, the application that made web based email actually work well. Then Chrome, which is way faster than Firefox and I raved about in this post.
And now Buzz, which allows us to aggregate and communicate Tweet-like messages. And it goes farther by inlining images and creating more communication with less clicking. It also integrates with Twitter, Flickr, and Google Reader.
After hearing quite a bit about Google’s browser Chrome, I became curious. Is it really better than Firefox? It seems that old habits die hard, and it is pretty easy to fall into using the same browser. Finally, my curosity won out, and I downloaded and installed Chrome yesterday.
It was the first time in long time I got excited about a new software. It was unbelievable. Super fast. Intuitive. And, it worked. I went to a variety of flash and Java sites, as well as Facebook. It worked flawlessly and quickly.
make all systematic knowledge immediately computable by anyone.
It may sound too good to be true, but it is true. They are taking the Google approach of gathering all the available resources and making them available to everyone. But, instead of static information such as blogs, web pages and images, they have created a system that answers any knowledge-based question.
The good news is that these answers are not limited to finding the roots of a quadratic equation. It means answering any question that can be answered by math or knowledge. That includes language, culture, music and colors. Wow.
Today, when I did a search on Google, I discovered that there is a new feature. Apparently, Google has started tracking which websites contain harmful code that will mess up your computer. The interesting thing is that today, every website was tagged as harmful!
Many people might say, “Oh, someone screwed up. They’re going to get fired.” But I disagree. I think that kind of thinking is very 20th century, and not applicable to a successful company like Google.
How is this possible? It’s actually natural. And the reason is that even though millions of people got confused and could not use Google’s search results, it does not mean that Google is a failure. It doesn’t even mean that Google or anyone else was harmed by the glitch. It only means that someone is going to be very careful that it never happens again!
And that’s a change in the paradigm of business. In the world of printed material, once it’s printed, its set forever in stone. But with the Internet, everything can be changed, fixed and improved at any time. So, even if Google was not able to serve millions of people for a short time, the whole episode will quickly be forgotten, and Google will continue to create value for most people in the world.
Miracles never cease. One of the most interesting and enlightening blogs I’ve seen recently is from Luke. Like many blogs, his blog is about fairly everyday things. But what’s interesting about it is the point of view.
That’s because Luke is a very intelligent cat. He lives in Los Angeles and lives a fairly normal lifestyle. He talks about the comings and goings of the people in his house, and the fish in the pond in the backyard.
Since Luke is Japanese, you have to read Japanese to understand his blog. At least that was before the Internet and Google. Now with Google Translator, you can have it translated for you!
So, that creates an interesting question. If a cat can have a blog that is translated into every language in the world, what’s next?
They also showed a few trends that appear to mirror the collective emotions behind keyword searches.
For example, the term, “Layaway” shows a profound jump in searches as the economy tanks and the Dow begins a precipitous drop. Layway is a term that would most likely appear because people are fearful of the economy and a fear that their access to credit would be stymied. The term was rarely searched during 2007. It skyrocketed in late 2008.
In another chart, as gas prices rise, so do searches for terms like “hybrid car” and “solar panel”; interestingly, the searches drop as prices fall. In fact, the descent seems to be in lock-step with the price of oil and the lower costs of gas at the pump.
Obviously, as Tech Crunch points out, this is beyond coincidence. This is a visualization of the spirit of its times. There’s another angle that’s a little more akin to how machines are slowly integrating into our life. Google’s Zeitgeist is more than another tool to understand the collective emotions; it’s the subtle interaction between collective human desire and machines.