Hashtag Database

In 2010 when I first wrote about QR codes, several friends say, ‘nah, they won’t take off’. I’m sure people said the same thing about hashtags. Well, hashtags will soon be included on packaging for major brand products, just like QR codes. #Hashtags are more than common now and there are dozens of websites that promise to give businesses ‘tracking data’ to determine how popular a tag is – in other words, see just how many people passed along the message that was trying to be conveyed. Facebook …

Google search results fail

Google is now returning search results that are “missing” words you’ve searched for – which is the point of adding words to a search! Years ago, Google allowed the use of operators in search queries. Specifically, the + and – signs. A query with a + sign in front of a word meant that the word MUST be on the page returned in the results. Just as a – sign meant that the word must NOT be in the page returned in the search results. Then Google changed …

Combine your cash gift cards

Over the years I’ve gotten a number of ‘cash’ gift cards (Visa, American Express) which, unlike a store gift card from Starbucks or Target, act like debit cards. They have a cash value that you can use anywhere. What would often happen is, I’d use part of the balance on the card, but leave some remainder. I’d forget about the card or I just didn’t want to deal with using multiple cards when paying for a purchase. Eventually I’d take the card(s) out of my wallet and they’d …

Netflix bait-and-switch?

I’m a HUGE fan of Netflix. I started with them around 1998, when they only offered DVDs. They were the first major player in what became the streaming video market. Today, I looked up a movie I’ve wanted to see – “Due Date”. When I did the search on Google, the page on the left is what came up… when I hovered over the movie poster, the “Play” icon was displayed, with the text “Start Your Free Trial to Watch”. Once I signed in, I went to play …

A new search box trend

Recently I’ve seen several websites that are ‘hiding’ the site search functionality. I don’t understand why… and I don’t like it. It’s hard enough to find what you’re looking for in a lot of modern navigation bars. Now with just a search ‘icon’, it makes it even harder to find. Here’s two of the many examples I’ve seen lately: Rally Software DealNews.com I think it’s much easier to quickly scan for that search text field – everyone is use to it, it’s easier to find than a single …

Another reason to use Google Voice

I’ve been on Google Voice for several years, though I only fully committed to it about 3 years ago. “Fully” meaning that I changed my phone number everywhere and started telling friends and family to stop using the ‘physical’ number attached to the mobile. For those who haven’t used/heard of Voice, the basic idea is this – one number for everything. If you call me (my Google Voice number), my home, work, mobile phone and even my computer will all ring at the same time. So no more …