General

Errata

There Are Only Four Things That People Do On the Web

This is another completely random day: nothing re ally interesting to write about (it’s cold, I’m bored) and no deep, profound thoughts. So, here’s a collection of miscellaneous thoughts, a jumble sale of impressions from my day:

Thread has another very though-provoking article entitled There Are Only Four Things That People Do On the Web. The first thing that you need an understanding of when developing a site is what purpose it will serve. Is it an ecommerce site, existing only to sell product and convert viewers to buyers? Is it a branding site, used to extend a brand or the associated lifestyle? You have to know what people will want from the site.

People use the web to learn
(Finding information – in order to learn – is the most common reason that people use the web.)

People use the web to feel
(To have feeling or be moved – through entertainment or being impressed by something new or beautiful or surprising)

People use the web to connect
(Whether part of an online community, sending an email to customer service, or posting to a blog or message board, the desire to connect in general – and with other people most particularly – guides or is a component of much web behavior.)

People use the web to trade
(“Trade” is any exchange of assets between people or organizations.)

“Begin thinking of your website as the means to meet the needs and desires of people. Understand the motivations that bring people to the web. Help them learn and feel and connect and trade. Plan your site to successfully provide all four of those things for the people you want to move. Doing so will give you the most flexibility and maximize stickiness between those people and your site. Then, if you do so in the context of your company – your brand, your products, your mission, your vision – you will create a relationship of trust and reciprocity with people first, and they will be far more likely to take productive action on your behalf as a result. That ultimately means long-term profitability and makes the most out of the medium.”

Evidently, Gay is a Dirty Word

I’m sure you’ve all read this by now, but I kept coming back to this case in my mind. It has been held up as a case of political correctness gone mad, but there is a deeper, more disturbing element to it: bigotry and hatred masquerading as political correctness. Any thinking, feeling human being would have handled this matter in a very different way. It’s as if they used the “we’re being PC” excuse to punish a child, and his parents by proxy, for sexual orientation.

Marcus McLaurin was waiting in line to go to recess on November 11 at Ernest Gallet Elementary School when a classmate asked him about his mother and father. He responded that he didn’t have a mother and father; instead he has two mothers. When the other child asked why, Marcus told him that it was because his mother is gay. The other child then asked what that meant, and Marcus explained, “Gay is when a girl likes another girl.”

Upon hearing this, Marcus’s teacher scolded him in front of his classmates, telling him that “gay” is a bad word and he should never say it at school, then sent him to the principal’s office instead of letting him go to recess. The following week the school required Marcus to attend a special behavioral clinic at 6:45 in the morning, where he was forced to repeatedly write “I will never use the word ‘gay’ in school again.”

Period Peace

“The first pill that officially allows women to menstruate once every three months, Seasonale is being positioned as a medical breakthrough. (Framed by four giant, reddish dots, Bushnell trumpeted “a whole new way” for women.) But similar combinations of estrogen and progesterone have long been marketed under other brand names. Women have been avoiding bleeding by staying on traditional birth control pills for months or even years, skipping each month’s placebo doses. Even Seasonale’s makers say having a period at the end of the product’s three-month cycle serves no health purpose, but bleeding remains part of the package. It’s as if too big an advance might overwhelm women used to a narrow range of birth control options.” Full article.

Actually, why can’t we skip menstruation for years, or throughout our entire reproductive lives? Have there been studies done on the effects on women’s health? Is the Kotex lobby too powerful? Female racehorses, during their competitive lives, are on hormones that prevent them from coming into season. Why can’t human females do the same thing?

Academics attack nursery rhyme injuries

This may be a wind-up. But, given the nature of these studies and recommendations, perhaps not.

Researchers have concluded that nursery rhymes show a cynical disregard for injuries, particularly to children. Sarah Giles and Sarah Shea, from Dalhousie University in Halifax, Canada, say Humpty Dumpty should have been put on a spinal board immediately after his big fall.

In a satirical letter to the Canadian Medical Association Journal, they added the presence of all the King’s men suggests a “shocking lack of crowd control”.

They ask: “Could the crowded scene explain the inability of the responders to put Humpty Dumpty together again?”

The pair argue that Rock-a-bye baby would have suffered serious injury in the fall from the tree, reports the Daily Telegraph. The fact the child was in the tree in the first place suggests a reprehensible lack of parental responsibility.

They wrote: “Our study shows that not only do many nursery rhymes detail incidents that could have resulted in severe head injury but also that medical opinion is seldom sought.”

They also criticise the rhyme about Jack and Jill for vagueness about the children’s injuries and say that foul play could have killed off the old man in It’s Raining it’s Pouring.

Top 20 Definitions of Blogging

“What is a blog? Why blog? Who should blog (journalists, marketers, CEOs, techies, educators, scientists, hobbyists)? Should blogging be pure or can you make money with a blog? Will blogging change everything?” I dunno.

And there’s No. 11: A way for a bunch of navel-gazers to communicate with one another. lol…

5 thoughts on “Errata

  1. “Actually, why can’t we skip menstruation for years, or throughout our entire reproductive lives?”

    Wouldn’t THAT be nice for so many reasons!

  2. Star that you are!

    That web article might just save me some screaming at people in the new year – I’m probably going to end up project managing our website redevelopment from brochure site into something useful and being able to point senior managers to that will help.

    As for the periods thing – I may have the details wrong but I’m sure an ex of mine used to take her pill continuously without having the 1 week off in 4 with no side effects. I’ll check if I can think of a way to bring it up that doesn’t squick me, her or her current boyfriend :-)

  3. I’ve only recently read an article from a female gynecologist and chemist (boy, she must like going to school) who hasn’t had a period in years and says she doesn’t know why any woman does. I’m a little leery of it all–I’d rather deal with the hell that is my period than take a whole bunch of hormones, but if other women want to avoid it all, I don’t see why not. Mind you, I’m hardly a certified expert but I don’t see how it can be any worse for your body to not have a period than it is to have it.

    I thought the four things people did on the ‘net were: porn, chat rooms, more porn and, finally, porn. :D

  4. I agree – I would be a bit nervous about it, as it would seem so unnatural. But if it’s true that you don’t have to go through that every month, year in and year out…my god, why do it?

    I think porn comes under No. 2: Feeling and No. 3: Connecting. ;)

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