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A world without wires

 

Vol. 4, No. 7, 12/3/2003

In this issue:
From the editor
Writing is easy?
Web content tip
Email tip
Readers write
The Y Files
Surf Club (web site reviews)
Reader choice
Weekly chuckle
Top links from last week
AD - Aquent recruits in marcomm too
Things that make you go huh?


From the editor


##first name##

Technology promised us a paperless office. In reality, we're probably killing just as many trees as before computers.

Poorly designed and written content is partly to blame. Who wants to read long boring scrolls of fuzzy text from a computer screen? Not me.

I often tell my web writing students that if somebody has to print a web page to read it then we've failed as online content creators.

Web content should be clear, concise and easily understood at first glance or we might as well stick to print or simply offer PDF files instead of HTML web pages.

I'm still in teacher mode, can you tell? Just finished day one of a web content workshop for 16 keen science communicators in Melbourne and am the last to leave.

The mass of electric spaghetti - red, yellow and blue network cables snaking across the carpet to the participants' laptops - makes me wonder how long before we can enjoy a world without wires.

Could be a while judging by our progress toward a paperless office - and to a world without borders.

Yvette

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Writing is easy?

Anyone can write, right? It's easy. Just drag a pen across paper or tap away on a keyboard. Take a whirl around the Net and you'll realise that clear, concise content is rare. Writing simply for the impatient online reader is difficult, especially if you work in a large corporate organisation. Brush up your web writers' skills with a customised workshop. Choose from web writing and editing (including information architecture, content management), content essentials (including usability, accessibility and promotion), or e-newsletters. Email yvette@brizcomm.com.au for a quote.
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Web content tip

Web server log statistics are gold nuggets for marketers and content creators.

Learn how to tweak your stats software and your mindset to get the most from your log files -

Web log analysis myths and tips -
http://www.devwebpro.com/articles/0305jm.html

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Email tip

Find out whether your e-newsletter will pass the sp*m filters and other tech nets designed to catch trash.

Run your newsletter by Sp*mCheck for your score and tips on reducing the changes of being trapped, whether through text or design.

Take a demo at -
http://spamcheck.sitesell.com

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Readers write

POLLYANNA - An electricity failure takes Pollyanna back down memory lane to the days of home-made ice cream, lamp-lit singsongs around the piano, Ponds Vanishing Cream and a night at the pictures -
http://tinyurl.com/628u

FEEDBACK - "Wonderful newsletter Yvette! I especially like the clever mix of subjects and the way you present material. It is easy to believe you are a competent jurno. I also agree some of the slogans were very clever and cutting. Didn't march myself but sympathise with the anti war sentiment 100%." - Ken.

"Just wanted to say, glad to hear that you went to the march in Canberra. We had a huge crowd in Brisbane. It was really amazing to realise that in a town where I used to march for the right to march, and only hippies and uni students marched, that so many 'normal' people felt the need to get on the street. It's just a shame that we live in a country where public opinion is only listened to when it suits the government agenda. Oh for a democracy...." - Gabrielle.

"Yvette, you could add this link to the toing and froing on anti-war protests -
http://www.onlineopinion.com.au/2003/Feb03/Flint1.htm
from David Flint, Law Professor at Sydney Uni. Nice to see a robust debate." - Sally of Blackall.

"You have a fantastic site going. I'm glad to see someone doing what you're doing. The Internet desperately needs sharp eyes like
yours to find the better sites and bring them to people's attention." - Doug from the US.

"I love your column because it is both informative and thought provoking. Thanks a lot and keep up the quality content!" - Julia from Melbourne.

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The Y Files

Send your question to yvette@brizcomm.com.au

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Surf Club (web site reviews)

Pencil Carving
http://www.infofreako.com/jad/enpitsu-e.html
If you canít write, you could always make a name for yourself carving pencils. Two Japanese experts are skilled enough in delicate woodwork to be able to carve a pencil without miscutting the naked lead inside. Admire their works including the honeycomb, double spiral and amazing chained pencil.
In a net shell: Sharp.

Birthday Alarm
http://birthdayalarm.com/
Never forget another birthday, thanks to these online reminders. Just fill out the dates and forget it. When the time comes, follow the link in the message to send an e-card or invite.
In a net shell: Face saver.

The Flash Mind Reader
http://www.cyberglass.co.uk/FlashEx/mindreader.html
A London new media designer created this spooky little animation. Just think of a two-digit number, do some basic maths, concentrate on a symbol and see if the crystal ball adds up.
In net shell: Tricky.

Find Videos
http://findvideos.com/
Watch your favourite music videos, including some from the early days of MTC, for no charge online. Search by artist and song or browse by genre. If you donít have the plug-in player, check the FAQs. You can also visit official web sites or buy the CD.
In a net shell: Quick clips.

Death Ė The Last Taboo
http://www.deathonline.net/
Learn all about death with the Australian Museumís new exhibition to open in May 2003. You can contribute stories about your own experiences, attitudes and beliefs or read othersí stories. Subjects include what happens after death, funerals, and remembering the dead.
In a net shell: Unusual.

Rate My Professors
http://www.ratemyprofessors.com/
Now itís teacherís turn to be tested. Students have rated teachers from every college in the US and Canada. Emoticons, such as smiley faces or a chilli (for sex appeal), accompany the ratings.
In a net shell: Smarts.

* web sites are previewed on ABC Radio Statewide on Mondays (between 8pm and 8.40pm)
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Reader choice


Planet Slayer - Greenhouse Calculator
http://www.abc.net.au/science/planetslayer/greenhouse_calc.htm
Planet Slayer is the world's first irreverent environmental web site. It's an interactive web site that tells the shocking truth about how the environment is affected by the way we live and what we buy, but without the tedious, worthy greenie attitude. Planet Slayer puts our actions and choices into perspective - the style is irreverent, but the facts are right.
- Reviewed by Bruce in Singapore

Send a brief review of your favourite site to yvette@brizcomm.com.au

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Weekly chuckle

What with all the sadness and trauma going on in the world at the moment, it is worth reflecting on the death of a very important person which almost went unnoticed recently.

Larry La Prise, the man who wrote "The Hokey Pokey", died peacefully at age 93.

The most traumatic part for his family was getting him into the coffin.

They put his left leg in... and then the trouble started.



More..



Top links from last week


(not available this week due to technical difficulties)

* to reproduce any content from brizcomm's newsletter or web site in your own publication, please email yvette@brizcomm.com.au

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AD - Aquent recruits in marcomm too

Global professional services firm Aquent has expanded its service offerings in the Asia-Pacific region.

In addition to creative staffing in web and print, the company now provides total staffing solutions in marketing, advertising and media, public relations and marcomm support.

Aquentís Asia-Pacific offices include Sydney, Melbourne, and Brisbane in Australia; Auckland, New Zealand; Singapore, Hong Kong, Tokyo, Osaka and Nagoya in Asia; and Bombay, India.

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Things that make you go huh?

"Yvette, this is the best ebook ever! Oh my God, who knew??...BTW, I LOVE the virtual autopsy (mystery lover here...)." - Tina Swift, Library Business Manager and freelance writer, western Massachusetts.

Ready for some extreme surfing? Want to be titillated, taunted and tempted?

Buy a copy of Odd Bods - 50 bizarre sites about the human body and shock your dinner party guests with tales from the dark side of the Net.

Grab your credit card to pay securely online for instant access to professionally reviewed sites that could take years to find among the millions of dead links, scumware and pop-ups.

Only 9.95 (incl. GST) in Aussie dollars (that's about five US dollars) - less than a bottle of red wine and the wicked pleasure will last longer.

Available in .exe format for PCs (.pdf for Macs coming). Don't worry, we'll tell you how to download it - it's super easy.

Go on, live dangerously and get it while it's hot - http://www.brizcomm.com.au/shop/




Remember, this newsletter is shareware. Please give a copy to a friend or colleague and suggest they sign up. Cheers.

##SEND_TO_FRIEND##

Yvette Nielsen, Editor - phone 61 (0)41 771 8683
PO Box 2026 Bardon Qld 4065 Australia

© 2000-2003 Brizcomm Pty Ltd

We accept no responsibility and disclaim all liability for any incorrect information in articles, sites or events in this newsletter. If links do not work, try again later - sometimes the host server for a listed site might be down temporarily.

 



Bobby Approved (v 3.2) Unusual Corporate Gifts other than a Gift Basket

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