Hail Caesar – The Quick Way to Change Numbers to Roman Numerals

Do you need to convert numbers into roman numerals (for example, you have just watched a movie and wondered exactly what year they meant when they say it was made in 1987 – that is MCMLXXXVII by the way…).

Well the way to find out is super simple (thank you Mr Google…) :  Go to Google and in the search box just type the number in question followed by the words ‘in roman numerals’ – as per the example below.

What’s the Time Mr. Wolf?

Getting the time for anywhere in the world has never been easier!  Just go to Google.com and type in ‘what is is the time in…’followed country you want to look up:  As soon as you have typed it, the time will automatically appear under the search box and you don’t have to be opening any websites or looking any further.

Digital Natives, Digital Gullability

Mark Bullen, an academic who blogs under the name of ‘The Net Skeptic’, has long maintained that there is little proof of  the generally held belief that the younger generations are far more IT savvy than ‘us old folk’ who  did not grow up in a digital world.  In one of his recent blog posts he cites this article Trust Online Hargittai,Fullerton et al 2010, which researched how young adults located and evaluated online content. It probably won’t come as a huge surprise to parents of teenagers or young adults that these students displayed an inordinate level of trust in search engine brand as a measure of credibility (as in “it came from Google” so it must be ok: quoting from the report:
“Over a quarter of the respondents mentioned that they chose a Web site because the search engine had returned that site as the first result suggesting considerable trust in these services. In some cases, the respondent regarded the search engine as the relevant entity for which to evaluate trustworthiness, rather than the Web site that contained the information.” Only 10% of the students bothered to verify the site author’s credentials: “These findings suggest that students’ level of faith in their search engine of choice is so high they do not feel the need to verify for themselves who authored the pages they view or what their qualifications might be.”

Maybe its laziness rather than trust that results in them not verifying sources (just a thought!)

Collaboration with Google Docs

As Ballarat TAFE students are looking at online collaboration using Google Docs starting this semester, I thought I might share this link with you that comes from the blog kept by a distance education librarian at Connecticut State University.

She talks through her experience of working collaboratively on a paper, and there is some good advice on what worked for her and what didn’t.

Using Google Docs.


Search Engine Optimisation

Just to follow on with my notes on Online Marketing, MycroWebDesign has some notes on it too.

Online Marketing

I went to a seminar on Online Marketing held by Net Registry last week. Here some of the top of my head notes that I took:

Australians are the biggest online spenders in Asia-Pacific region (prob. because all through Asia you can shop till 10pm at night, every night).

15 seconds is the average before a potential customer moves off your site, so tell them who you are, what you do, what is important to them (e.g. feature, price, brand) and what to do next  – so all this stuff needs to be on the homepage.

73% of people research purchases first online.

69% of Aussie users read blogs (but  70% of blogs are dumped and no longer maintained after 2 months).

Google AdWords are the next best to word of mouth advertising.

Netregistry (unsurprisingly as they consult in this area) recommend settings a pay per click campaign, which uses google AdWords (the adds that appear on the right side of any Google search you do). While you can do it yourself they say that having a professional marketer such as themselves (a search engine optimisation program with them would cost around $200)per month) gives the best outcome.  Doing it yourself set up a daily budget (according to my notes $1 cost per view of your add), create a keyword list, track and monitor results.  they did also mention that what they suggest is to set up a page that has everything on it separate to the webpage where customers land after they click an AdWords campaign.  I would have thought landing on the Homepage would have done the trick and you modify that page so that it avoids the 15 second bounce.

Ways to have yourself on the first Google search – AdWords, having links from other websites, plus ensure you keep changing the content so that when Google checks here is always new stuff for them to index. If you don’t it will stop dropping by as it figures there are no changes to update.]

15,000 websites are submitted to Google daily.

Use Google analytics to monitor your statistics (just go to Google and type this in, the link comes straight up).

Meta key words – 1 line summary of your website

Page Title – no more than 50 words

Metadescription – no more than 15o words.  REad up on Search Engin Optimization Methods:


Do some research on SEO (search engine optimisation).

Here’s a couple of articles from Nett Magazine:

How to Define and Engage Your Audience Online  and a beginner’s guide to the perfect e-commerce site.

Google’s Sidewiki – No place to Hide

Thanks to a blog post on Planet Domain by Jonathan Crossfield I learned about Google’s new offering, Sidewiki, which is still in testing stage. Basically the idea is that Sidewiki gives everyone who uses the product the ability to leave comments – positive or negative – against every single webpage.

Website owners can’t stop them, delete them or moderate them. As Jonothan writes: “Got a particularly unpopular product? Expect people to say so, right next to your page for everyone else with Sidewiki enabled to see. Of course, this can work for or against a business website. Some strong positive posts could represent your brand well and encourage others to take up your offer. However, criticisms will be more visible. Instead of these conversations taking place elsewhere on the web where only some of your audience may come across them, every visitor to your site with the Google toolbar installed will be able to see them”.

It is a a pretty major development and is bound to be controversial.  Read the rest of the article