The Problem with All You Can Eat Information

Social MediaEveryday we sit down in front of our keyboards ready to feast on the virtual information buffet on the internet. Our mind salivates as we open up a browser and prepare ourselves for all you can eat information. But like everyone else who slaps down their hard-earned money, you want to get the most out of your meal. How can you do that when it comes to the internet?

There is definitely a good and bad strategy when it comes to consuming the unlimited information that the internet has to offer. Yes, for those who are serious about getting the most out of all you can eat, you will need a strategy. There are two main problems with the internet buffet: too many choices, and you have a limited amount of time before you are full.

Internet BuffetFirst problem – Too many choices. It doesn’t matter what your topic, there are more sites than you have time to read. Your eyes glaze over as you imagine what you consume first. There are many choices but not all of them are good. There is some information that is the best you have ever had, and some you want to spit out the minute you taste it. With so many choices, you have to learn the tricks of the trade if you are going to feast on the best.

Trick #1 – How full is the pan? If a dish is great, then the pan is almost empty. You can see this with information by looking at the share numbers. When it says it has been tweeted 112 times that is a good thing it means the pan is half empty. Sometimes there are great new posts that haven’t been shared yet, but in general each share is like a vote. The people willing to share it means they tried it and wanted more. Learn to read the numbers and see the signs of good information.

Second problem – You get full. As mom used to say, “Save room for desert.” If you fill up on mediocre information you won’t have time for tastier information. You can only have so much on your plate so learn to be an information snob and discern the difference in quality. The plates at a buffet are never big enough and you simply can’t have enough time to read everything. Get picky, here is how.

Social Media Expert

Trick #2 – Look for the biggest guy in the room, what is he eating? Follow people who have been around for a while and who are well-known in the field you are interested in and see what they are reading. Trust and recommendations are a huge currency on the internet and there is a reason. These people have tasted many dishes and they know more than you. Look at what they have on their plate and try some.

You don’t have the time to try a bite of everything. Even if you try you will get full. Learn to start with the most popular dishes and then find the best consumers of information and eat what they are eating. If you do this you will be an all you can eat pro and get your money’s worth for the time you invest online. Hey, they may have to ask you to leave…

Smarter Strategies for an Information Age

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How to Hug a Blogger

OK so we all write content and spend our time sharing information with others. With so much information available we all know what it is like to find a really good article. Many people come and read the article that took the blog author time and expertise to write and then leave without so much as a comment.

Blogging is about sharing, it is about giving the best you have to help others

We have been taught to be selfish in society and always think of WIIFM (What’s In It For Me). The days of saying thank you are gone and few and far between are those considerate people who believe they should repay those who they have benefited from.

So how exactly do you repay a blogger? You give them a hug. I am not talking about driving to their hometown and stalking them until the moment is right…. I am talking about returning something of value to them.

Blog Author Hugging 101:

Definition: Squeeze (someone) tightly in one’s arms, typically to express affection.

Hugging: See all those little buttons around the post: Like, Thumbs up, Stumble, Digg, Tweet, +1, etc.. That is how you thank the blogger for their effort. It is something only you can do for the blogger and it is a great way to tell them thanks. Press everything, if you don’t have an account, it only takes a second to make one so you can promote that post and any others after that.

Comment: Yes, comment. More than anything people want to know that the info they spent time writing has impacted someone or at least sparked a thought good or bad. Try and say more than nice post which not only doesn’t add value by itself, but may indicate you skimmed it and didn’t really read it. Just saying nice post is like saying “Ehh” after they present their ideas.

Be the first to comment whenever possible. If a post has no comments other people are likely to not comment either. The first comments get the party started and help everyone go beyond the surface of the blog post. Comment often and ask questions, the comment section is a party.

Sharing is Caring: Tweet it, share it to your network and followers. This gives the post legs and helps it reach more people we all have a little network we can share to and a great way to make a blogger feel appreciated is to hit the share buttons. A few seconds shows you are a team player and they are likely to do the same for you.

Go Beyond:  Go to another post and do the same thing. If you really want to say I appreciate what you are doing, then go hug another one of their posts. Hug it out…. It is hard not to hug back. This is the essence of networking success. Social media is about relationships, the technology is supposed to help us manage them, it won’t create them by itself.

This is just good citizenship, silent eyes on posts that don’t interact are many times unseen by the author and makes it hard to hear the thank you. There are some very good Blog Huggers out there and it takes one to know one. Now you can start to notice when people are hugging you and you you can hug them back. Be a responsible reader and give back. After all we all need a good hug now and then…

Design – Measuring the Purity of your Information Interface

Hello Everyone,

So as I explore the world of information and innovation, I bring with it a point of view and observations of an outsider…

First observation, the news sites and blogs on tech are vomited with ads and clutter. Most popular blogs are so busy I feel like a goat that was scared and might tip over. For technology experts you would think the basic concept of streamlined efficient user interface would be common sense.

Why not have a simple layout that delivers high quality information? That is what my vision for my blog is. Do we need flashing ads? Hell no! people who are smart enough to read about technology and innovation are too smart to be lured into an ad for some crap that is flashing in the sidebar. Do you really buy a Chevy because a banner ad? Let’s start with smarts.

If your information is a Ferrari you don’t need to try and monetize the blog with a flashing idiot ad. I expect more out of the top people in the tech world. Your information has a user interface and it is the layout of your blog or site. How is clutter working for Yahoo right now vs Google…. All this innovation and not the common sense to make a site that is as intelligent as the people reading it. Think about it..