Google Sitemaps Verification & Mobile

Google Sitemaps has seen an update.

Verification
If you verify that you are the owner of the submitted ‘sitemap.xml’, you get to see some extra statistics about the indexing process. Although I see some errors on URL’s that aren’t even in my sitemap.
Go to your sitemap controlpanel and click the verify link next to the sitemap. Just follow the instructions.

Google Mobile WebMobile Sitemap
If you run a mobile-enabled (WAP) site you now can also submit sitemaps. See for more info:

Maybe something for the guy running Wapipedia.org (The mobile version of Wikipedia)?

GMail down?

Funny to notice this. It’s a free service. You know they know everything about you by scanning your e-mail. There are/were dozens of alternatives. But still you get upset when it’s not working.
In other words: “How dependant are you on something that’s free?”

During the day I noticed GMail was a little flakey. I somehow attributed that to the network today, because it was not only GMail being flakey. But I’ve seen the below message more than enough.

Google Down

Makes you wonder. What on earth is happening at ‘GooglePlex’. Did Larry have enough of it and re-signed up for a Hotmail account? Did Serge spill his coffee? Anyway, I haven’t seen an outage like this from Google in quite a while.
Makes you hope you don’t see this in the morning headlines: “GMail inboxes hacked by mega-spammer.”

(All I wanted to do was send this ‘important’ document. ;-))

Added: I see a clear breach of policy here: “… users may not: Interfere with other Gmail users’ enjoyment of the Service“. I reckon all Google employees a first hour user, so why are they getting away with spoiling my enjoyment? 🙂

Get your free copy of Opera

It seems you can get a free, registered copy of Opera 8.02 today. They’re probably giving away free copies because the browser is celebrating its 10th anniversary.

Opera logoNote: For one day only, you can get an ad-free version of Opera. Simply e-mail registerme@opera.com to obtain a click here to get a free registration code. This offer is valid from 12 a.m. Tuesday, August 30 to 12 a.m. Wednesday, August 31 2005 (PDT).

As stated at Download.com.

Update: Never mind sending an email. Their inbox probably exploded. Instead the nice people of Opera put up an online registration form over here. I’m now surfing without the ad-banners, thanks Opera.

Free GMail Accounts per Textmessage/SMS

Google’s handing out free GMail accounts per textmessage/SMS. But only if you have an American phonenumber!

Funny thing though… if you go to the localised version of the page like let’s say the French, German, Spanish or Dutch version most of the text is already translated. But you still need an American phonenumber though. 🙁
So what does this mean? A. Googles automatic translation is pretty awsome or B. you can get GMail accounts using your local operator pretty soon.

If you can’t wait and still don’t have a GMail account. Drop a mail to gmail(at)thinklemon.com.

The Joys of Shared Hosting

… are of course the low price tag and not having to maintain the server yourself.

Crash The downside however, is that you are at the mercy of your mostly unknown neighbours. Who happen to reside on the same server. So what happened? ThinkLemon.com was out of service for quite a while. 14 hours straight to be exact.
All because one neighbour (un)willingly decided to play not so nice. Cascading in a total server melt-down. Apparently the wrong-doer has been kicked and all should be well for now.

Lesson learned? Don’t go experimenting in a live-server environment!!! Thank you. If you must, please experiment locally and test your stuff before release. How? See XAMPP from apachefriends.org. They have ready-to-go Apache+MySQL+PHP+Perl packages for Windows, Mac OSX, Linux and Solaris.
So if you decide to create infinite loops from hell. It’ll be only your system that crashes.

Just a thought.

The present: Most people come to you via a search engine (probably through Google, although Yahoo! is on the return). Some people come via Technorati, Bloglines or other RSS feed engine. And some are family, friends, co-workers, affiliates, … the people you meet in real life. All 6 of them. 😉

Given the state of current search engines, they’re stumbling over one another for the largest and fastest index, and the state of the ‘distributed web’ via RSS services (*cough web 2.0*). Does it really matter whether your site is in ‘shape’, a.k.a. designed? What matters these days is crawlability and indexability. In fact with add-ons like GreaseMonkey you cannot even be sure that your visitors will see what you’ve intended. Shuther to think what you’ll break when you update your site for someone running a GreaseMonkey script.

The future: Here’s my thought. What if? I’ll just revert to HTML 2.0. Google & Co understands it very well. And instead of chronological blogging or filling my web space, I’ll just put up thoughts and keep on writing on them totally visibly for you.

Hold up. That’s called a wiki!

Yes. 🙂 But think of it. What’s so different from a blog? Blog (and forum) people put up ‘updated’-tags in their posts to signal a change. So what if I don’t have to care about that? I’m thinking cross-over wiki/weblog. Just let me write, note, jot, expand, figure out, take a sidestep, draw, video-tape it or just delete. And you, my audience, all 6 of you, could comment in the proceedings? You know, just like a weblog. You’re probably saying OPML? No, from what I’ve seen it’s not what I want.

Come to think of it. It’s much like building your own personal Wikipedia, pinging around whenever I press a button (feeds), having a sitemap so search engines (G. Sitemaps) are filled with their hunger, put up an OPML to keep mister Winer happy, put up a webservice/API so every webdeveloper can rehash my content on their mobile, … Who cares about my site? It’s about distributing it.

Like I said, just a thought.

Enough with the RSS, just call it webfeeds!

I’ve been following the ‘discussion’ a.k.a. mud-slinging for some time now. And sorry for mister Winer, but it’s everything against the name. Acronyms are fine, just as long as there’s something simple to back it up. A CD is a shiny silver disc that holds (expensive) music. A DVD is a shiny silver disc that holds video. ABS makes your braking safer, supposedly. A PC is something to run Windows on.

The problem with acronyms is that it can mean several things. PC can also means Politically Correct. See what else ABS, CD or AVI can be.

But let’s focus on RSS. Now, you tell me: Is it ‘Really Simple Syndication’, ‘Rich Site Summary’ or ‘RDF Site Summary’? This confussion has been going on for some years now. Although I might say the winning hand is on Really Simple Syndication (RSS 2.0 that is). But what does Syndication mean (to the general public)? So I can syndicate in a simple fashion … what? I can’t explain this to my father (60+).

I do however can explain to my father: “Hey, click on that orange button. See? It’s in your bookmarks. Now you can see what’s new over there, everytime you look. Neat? You are now ‘fed over the web’ with the latest news, weather forecasts, sea-levels, bingo-results, whatever. And you’ll have to do exactly nothing. Just look.”

And this is exactly why I think this is a non-discussion. RSS, RDF, Feeds, Webfeeds, Web Feeds, I personally don’t care what it’s called. I care what it does. There still isn’t a single way or application that makes it easy for John Doe to use feeds. I’ve always said that RSS/webfeeds will only break through if Microsoft will deliver a feedreader with the next Office installment. Or as it seems, that they will bake it in the OS. Untill then it will be geek-stuff only. (Did anyone see the reports?)

And I’m sorry mister Winer, Scoble and Dotzler, why don’t you agree on a single simple way to subscribe to feeds. Let’s call it Really Simple Subscription. And use, let’s say feed://subscribe.my.feed/. Just like everyone is used to http: and mailto: