Google Sphere Widget in Action!
As you may or may not be aware, Google have just released a site widget for their Sphere image thingy ma’ jiggy. These image can be created on the Nexus 4 and possibly others – I’m not sure? I have a Nexus 4 so I can
Any way I decided to try it out and throw up an image and here it is!
(Click on it and drag it around or click once to pan!)
It’s pretty easy to do. The developer guidelines are here!
Obviously this needs to be a Sphere image, not just any old image and it needs to be on G+
How to Increase Memory Allocation for Screaming Frog
First and foremost, this isn’t anything that Screaming Frog do not already document but as with everything, nobody takes the time to reads the instructions so I thought I put it in a slightly easier to read format and help spread the love.
Locate where you have installed Screaming Frog. In most cases you will need to hit the windows key – Computer – C:/ – Program Files and locate the folder - Screaming Frog.
Once you have located the Screaming Frog folder you should see four files; the one we want is called ScreamingFrogSEOSpider.l4j.ini
Edit this bad boy using Notepad++ (or just boring old notepad) and edit where it says 512 and change it to 1024 and click save, this will double the memory.
That’s it job done!
You can increase it further, but anything over what your machine is actually capable of will result in Screaming Frog not working, you can check out further details for this on the Screaming Frog user guide.
Smile smugly and follow me on Twitter.
SEO’s Best Kept Secret!
So you want to know SEO’s best kept secret? Well I’m going to give it to you. If we refer to iAquire’s 6 month link building road map we can see that it mentions 301’ing a domain that you have been building upon into your target domain – a fairly well known tactic.
So with a Ctrl+F you can search for domains that contain your target keywords, check out the domains backlink profile and go ahead and buy the domain. Now controlling the new domain you can 301 the site into your own or get more creative and tinker to your hearts content. :)
The site will also offers a catching service for any domains you have your eye on and price comparison for hosting etc.
My First Python Program
I have just written my first ever program from scratch, albeit simple i’m still very happy with it! It’s basically an extension of the classic “Hello world!” , except it greets you and asks you a few questions and uses your responses within the program.
This is slightly more interesting then getting it to return just “Hello world!” and certainly more interactive!
The issues with “Hello world!” and Python is that it’s so damn easy!
To say ”hello world!” in Python is as follows;
Not exactly inspiring! The program I have written is simple but interactive so it feels like I have actually manage to get the computer to do something. Anyway here is the code…
#This program says hello and asks for my name, age and what I do #for a living.
print(“what’s your name?”)
name = input()
print(‘well hello there, ‘ +name)
print(‘How old are you?’)
age = input()
print(“Wow, I’m also ” +age)
print(“What do you do for a living, if you don’t mind me asking…”)
living = input()
print(‘Cool, so you are ‘ +age)
print(‘You work in ‘ +living)
print(‘Your name is ‘ +name)
print(‘Got it! ’)
Running this program you are returned with the following (my replies to the program are in bold);
what’s your name?
well hello there, Craig
How old are you?
Wow, I’m also 27
What do you do for a living, if you don’t mind me asking…
Cool, so you are 27
You work in Marketing
Your name is Craig
I could have made it with a little more creativity but that’s not really important to me at this stage.
If anyone reading this hasn’t already guest it, I have no previous programming experience so it’s a steep learning curve at the moment. If anyone wants to give me some pointers, it’s much appreciated!
LastPass Password Manager – Get It!
Really short post today but I just wanted to show some love to a Chrome extension I have been using for about a year now, I recommend it to everyone as it is just a great app for managing and organising your online life.
The app I am talking about is of course LastPass (awkward title if it wasn’t). Basically LassPass allows you to store all passwords in the cloud meaning you can easily access them across multiple computers; there is also a premium version which allows you to access them across multiple devices such as your mobile.
When trying to access a site for the first time it will ask you if you would like to save the details for next time, it also allows you to auto generate passwords and usernames that it will again save for you ready for next time. LastPass also allows you to have multiple logins per site so if you were using different personas or you have personal and work accounts, you can quickly switch between them without having to mess around with usernames and passwords.
If you change any passwords you can quickly edit them from your LastPass Vault. I like to use it to search for sites that I rarely use such as my server admit area as it will just auto log me in. Yay!
Anyway I’d highly recommend it, I guarantee if you start using it you will love it!
Check it out https://lastpass.com/
Chrome Extension https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/lastpass/hdokiejnpimakedhajhdlcegeplioahd?utm_source=chrome-ntp-icon
Learning Python – Help!
I have wanted to learn a programming language for quite some time now and even tried a few times but failed. I think the main issues has been lack of actual interest, moronic, I know. With SEO I learned through repetition; reading through blog after blog, on this and that, before I ever new what it was.
I read through ‘The Art of SEO’ before I was even in the industry and even though I didn’t understand what I was reading (canonical who?) I persevered as I had an end goal – I wanted to work in the SEO industry. I knew the end goal and the outcome of that goal, at the time it was just high rankings but I lacked the know-how to actually achieve it.
This I believe is the answer to my programming dilemma, I don’t really have an end goal and I don’t really understand what programming can do. Not really.
With this in mind I have done 3 things;
- Applied patience and repetition to my learning
- Given myself an end goal
- Taken a glimpse at what programming can do for me – however humble
Firstly, I’m not going to learn the basics over night, just admitting this to myself takes off the pressure and some of the frustrations of learning something new and much like SEO I’m probably best learning through repetition, even if I don’t fully understand what I am doing. Much like my experience with learning SEO, eventually it will fall into place.
Secondly, giving myself an end goal allows me to concentrate on something, even if I never actually achieve it. In this case I have chosen to build a crawler much like screaming frog, Dan Sharp doesn’t need to get too worried though. Yet
Thirdly, and I think this is the most important for the short term is to give myself a demo of what coding can actually do. In this case I simply stepped away from learning the basics and borrowed some code that I found searching Google and ran it through my Python interpreter.
Here’s the code…
url = ‘http://www.craigaddyman.com/how-to-find-an-xml-sitemap/’ # write the url here
usock = urllib2.urlopen(url)
data = usock.read()
How any of the code actually works is irrelevant at this stage, the outcome of running the code is what is important. Basically running this code returns the source code for ‘http://www.craigaddyman.com/how-to-find-an-xml-sitemap/’, running this code to return my own personal website is also very important; it’s my site, I recognise the source code, it actually means something to me.
I’m sure any programmer reading this will laugh but seeing this come to life is very exciting and motivating and it also aligns with my goal.
If anyone is in a similar position to me and learning Python, please get in touch as I’d love someone to help me through the learning process and equally someone to help. I reached out a few times on Hacker Buddy but know one wants to play
How to Find an XML Sitemap
If you already know what this is simply drag the following into your browsers bookmark bar.
Basically, this one I have made strips away the URL path and the sub-domain (www.) to do a site search for “filetype:xml” which in most cases will quickly reveal the xml sitemap.
If the sitemap isn’t displayed in the SERPs it means two things; either there is no sitemap or it isn’t indexed for whatever reason.
You can of course keep it old school by searching for /sitemap.xml but that’s a bit boring and again, not a full proof method as the URL paths change from site to site depending on where the webmaster/developer has dropped it.
If you still haven’t found it you could check the robots.txt or strike it off as missing.
You’ve probably already noticed I don’t have a sitemap, don’t start!
Interview with Paul May Of BuzzStream
Hey Craig. Sure, I’m Paul May and I’m one of the co-founders of BuzzStream. BuzzStream provides software to help marketers more effectively promote their products, services and content so that they get more links and generate more buzz. BuzzStream does this by centralizing all of the information about the organization’s content promotion efforts, keeping track of their communications with influencers and publishers, and eliminating the manual steps involved with prospecting, research, and reporting.
How to Generate Content Ideas
Sometimes for a client or your company you need to come up with content ideas. To fall in line with seasonality of your niche etc you can often come up with content ideas far in advance but there are always new topics that crop up and its a good idea to jump on them as soon as possible.
Ideally you should know what these topics are going to be before everyone else does but if you’re a little behind or struggling for insight the following advanced segment for Google analytic’s might just help you out. It can also be good for helping you get your content schedule started.