RawVoice Podcast Statistics Released

Over the past couple of months I’ve been working on a podcast statistics system for the RawVoice communities Blubrry.com, PodcasterNews.com and TechPodcasts.com. The system can also be completely re-branded for companies who want to use the media download statistics for their podcasts.

Podcast Statistics are a very important part of the Podcasting business. The download numbers are very important, not only as a way for the producer to gain insight of their audience size, but they are also used as a means of making money. Most podcast advertising today is based on allotments of 1,000 downloads, referred to as CPM. If someone offers you $5 CPM and you have 10,000 downloads of your podcasts, you would make $50. The CPM in this example is just that, an example. Actual CPM rates range based on the popularity of your show, the content it targets and the demographics the advertisement targets.

We were fortunate to work with download statistics for a very popular podcast, one of the top 10 on iTunes. This podcast alone has an audience size of roughly 1/2 million. Having this data, I was able to truly test and optimize the database and programming logic in order to quickly create the reports. The first version of the system took 15 minutes to update. The updates now take between 60 to 90 seconds and include the totals for country demographics, software clients and operating system platforms.

If you want to see what I have been working on over the past couple months, check out the Blubrry Podcast Statistics page. Link: http://www.blubrry.com/podcast_statistics/Â If you are a podcaster, you may also want to check out the tutorial video Todd made, it has detailed instructions how to setup your podcast to use the Blubrry Statistics system.

I am pretty excited by the outcome of the RawVoice Statistics system. I have many people to thank, especially my wife for her help and support.

Similar Posts – if you like this you may like that for WordPress

I’ve been wanting a plugin for WordPress for a while now that would list other related posts to visitors. The best way to draw someone to read a previous article is to remind them of your previous posts in new posts. This extra step is a real hassle and frankly when someone is reading your blog simply from the feed it becomes more of a hassle than anything.

So tonight I searched and tried out a few similar posts plug-ins for Word press and finally came across this one (http://rmarsh.com/plugins/similar-posts/). This particular plugin gives weights to the post titles and uses the first 20 words in order to determine like characteristics. I just used the defaults for my blog and it works great. I am sure if I increase the number of words it scans in the posts to 50 it would be more accurate, but it’s working well out of hte box and I dig it. Now, I wonder what other posts it will recommend for this one? 🙂

Wiring Up the house

I’ve been slowly wiring the house with Ethernet Cat5e and Coax RG-6 cabling. The evening of the 4th I finally ran cabling up to the attic and dropped the wires into the bedrooms. All the rooms now have coax cable ports. I’ve punched down 4 Ethernet in two of the important bedrooms. Sometime this weekend I’ll finish the other 2 bedrooms.

Wall Ports

I think putting 2 ports in each room was a smart thing to do. I color coded them so each room has both a blue and a green port. If we ever decide to get a home ‘lan’ phone, we now have the option of putting Ethernet phones in every bedroom.

I had to pull one of the cables off the patch panel. I still don’t know what the standard practice is for re-using a port in a patch panel that was previously used. I assume I can re-use the port but I haven’t found a blog post or web site to say either way. If anyone knows one way or the other, please leave a comment.

I didn’t wire everything on my own, as you can see Ty helped out!

Wiring Expert

JCPToday – JC Penney pop up advertisements

Post revised on June 2, 2007:

I was contacted on June 1st by Mark Stimson and Rob Noble of Skinkers about their concerns that I interpreted their application as Spyware. They promised me that the application does not monitor keystrokes and it is not malicious. It was all coincidence that at the moment I searched for ‘spybot’ on my moms computer their application popped up an advertisement for JC Penney. It also appears they were unaware that their uninstaller for their application is faulty. In the E-mail Mark stated that they are looking into the uninstalling problem.

They do claim that Vista requires the uninstaller shortcut to open the add/remove control. The lack of an uninstaller application in the program’s directory combined with the uninstall shortcut linking to the windows add/remove programs control drove me to make this post. Had I been able to uninstall the application successfully, I would not have made this post.

I understand that Skinkers is the software developer of the JCPToday application and that they did not intend for their application to be misconstrued as Spyware. They developed the product specified to them by the JC Penney company. My contempt is focused on JC Penney, not Skinkers. I certainly wouldn’t blame soldiers for a war.

I’ve removed sentences that I now feel may have been a bit harsh toward the Skinkers company and replaced the word ‘spyware’ with ‘pop up advertisements’. I’ve also fixed the spelling of the word monstrosity.

Original post on May 27, 2007:
I was working on my mom’s computer and noticed a nice pop up window from JC Penney. They recommended a product for my recent search I made on her computer. Wait a minute, why would they recommend anything for me to buy when I search for ‘spybot’? Apparently Jeans matched their database for the word I was searching. Nice pop up advertisements JCPenny!

So, I started to investigate. The application is called JCPToday.exe. So, now it is time to uninstall this monstrosity. They made the shortcut for the uninstall open the add/remove programs built into windows. Guess what, JCPToday isn’t even listed in add/remove programs. Ahh, a real challenge!

Okay, before I go into the details how to remove this thing, I have to put my 2 cents into this. First off, JC Penny must be really hard up for customers or their Marketing department has had their heads in the sand over the past 5 years. They should know this is considered pop up advertisements and that it will result in severe consequences with both company appearance and customer trust. My prediction, someone, if not a few people, from the marketing department at JC Penny will be fired within the next 3 months.

Now, lets get this software off the computer. This thing inserts settings in 12 different places in the Windows registry. I decided the best thing to do is create an application to remove it. The application linked here is made from NSIS. It first deletes the application’s files then deletes all the registry settings associated with it. If needed, it will mark the files to be deleted upon reboot.

After creating this uninstaller, I discovered how intrusive this program truly is. It added entries to the Windows Firewall and integrated itself to windows explorer. The only thing the pop up advertisements don’t do is order things from JC Penney for you. I am sure it would try to find a product match for your credit card number when you enter that on jcp.com. This kind of crap just blows my mind.

Download: JCPToday Uninstaller
Download: JCPToday Uninstaller Script

So lesson learned, never shop at JCPenney. They are unethical.

Dreamweaver 8 and comparing files: Use WinMerge

I have been putting Dreamweaver 8 through a lot this weekend. I found a neat section in the Preferences to add a 3rd party application to compare two files. The product Macromedia recommends costs money and I already prefer a different file comparison application called WinMerge. Well I set the preferences to use the WinMerge.exe and to my amasement it worked!

www.winmerge.org

If you want to compare a local copy of a file with the file on the server you may want to change the setting in WinMerge to ignore the end of line characters for comparison. This is only required if you publish your files to a Mac or Unix/Linux web server.

Dreamweaver 8 is awesome!

Web development is changing dramatically. The biggest change is with using style sheets. For the past few years, I have used style sheets sparingly. Many older browsers do not support all the styles and if the user turns off the ability to render styles the web site ends up looking like a boring list of information. A lot of the modern and very well designed web pages are now using style sheets exclusively. The biggest problem working with style sheets is you could not preview your change without loading it into Firefox or Internet Explorer. But not any more!

Now that I have Dreamweaver 8, there is a huge improvement with viewing the styles right in the development screen. This will definitely save me time! They also moved the style management to the right column along with the files view and other tools. This is also convenient since it now allows me to edit the styles without having to close extra dialogs. Now if they just made the find/replace screen another tool window instead of a modeless dialog then things would be even better!

I highly recommend Dreamweaver 8. The templating system and site management tools combined with the advanced style editing features make it completely worth the $400!