Archive for the ‘www’ Category

Very Simple Awstats Install for 1and1 Hosting accounts

Tuesday, March 23rd, 2010

I’ve had an automated install for the Awstats package for a while. I cleaned it up today to make it user friendly and made it available for download. It works only for 1and1 linux hosting with the business or developer package.

The instructions for doing this by hand are so difficult as to make it impossible. I had to automate it because I could never get it right twice in a row.

Now I am happily installing awstats on the 20 or so websites that I have hosted at 1and1. It takes about 3 minutes for each install.

Very Simple Awstats Install for 1and1 Hosting accounts | Blogs Eye.

Links and Ads

Monday, October 12th, 2009

Fred Pohl linked back to the post on the Science Fiction League. This was nice of him and so far I have seen a dozen hits. I hope y’all come back now.

The project wonderful ads have started generating a (very) little income, but I am pleased with the ads. Currently they are for a fairly unique site that lets you continue a shared story by writing posts. I think I’ll even click on it and lurk. It does look like fun.

I know that four or five SF writers and editors have had reservations about advertising on their blogs and zine sites because the ads are out of their control. Specifically the keyword Fantasy often gets some weird ads, as you can imagine. With the project wonderful website you approve the ads before they appear on your site. The downside is that the income is pretty low for small sites. Higer volume sites (over 1,000 hits a day) can make more.

I have started advertising my Name a Star site using project wonderful and I am getting a few click-throughs. The price is quite a bit lower than adwords and I can pick and choose the sites where I want the ads to appear. If you need to advertise a site, on a budget, then project wonderful is perfect. There are numerous gaming and spec-fic sites to choose from (J. Erwine and Ephemeris, please note!)

The Scale of the World Wide Web

Thursday, August 6th, 2009

As I went out to get coffee I tried to estimate the number of pages that I own. I have large databases of things like stars, email archives and blues song lyrics. For a while I was producing dynamic pages from any database I could find and my theory at the time was that I needed “shelf space”. I remember from my MBA days that an important marketing concept was positioning for shelf space. Given choices, a shopper often picks randomly from all possibilities, so if your product and its permutations takes up a greater percentage of the shelf, your sales will reflect this. My idea was to make lots of low quality pages and get a large number of total clicks from low page traffic.

If I have a web site that I spend time working on, like this one, that gets 1,000 hits a day, is that good?

To answer this I have to place that traffic on the universal scale.

There are more than a trillion unique web pages on the internet. By one estimate there are about 100 million active websites. About 240 million people have access to the internet and the traffic might be more than 10 billion page requests (hard to find any hard data on pages).

My little corner of the world is about half a million pages with monthly traffic of 310,000 page views (Also includes the odd sites and harmonica stuff). This appears to be a very small share of the total internet – less than 0.00005 percent of the total web pages and less than 0.003 percent of the page views. On the surface it seems that I have the tiniest of fractions of the internet.

The internet is a curve with a small percentage of sites getting most of the traffic and a very large number that get no traffic, which makes the statistical internet much smaller. Actually, I rank 32,521 on Quantcast (composite of all of my sites). That means there are about 32,000 websites ahead of me. is about 31,000. So my sites are big deals, at least in the SF world, I am rated at near the same percentile as SFSITE where major magazines are hosted.

The next question is: Why aren’t I rich? The answer is that I don’t know, but I’m working on it.

Using a Net Name

Monday, February 9th, 2009

I recently received a couple of invites to be a friend to someone whose name I did not recognize. I get these from time to time and they are usually spam bots. The name seemed familiar, so I clicked through and there was my cousin’s face smiling at me on facebook. She had used the surname Mansfield, which is an old family name on my mother’s side. The Mansfields were an interesting branch to the family and we have a diary written by one of my ancestors. It is from the 1830s and is mostly a list of disasters like train crashes, steam boats exploding and large city fires. My cousin used her own first name, but used the Mansfield surname to hide her real world identity.

My real name is scattered all over the internet, sometimes in places I would rather not think about. I wrote shareware in the 1980s and many of my programs were quite famous. I received a shareware writer of the year award back in the 90s. My program txt2com allowed someone to take a text file, wrap a reader around it and then compress it. The file was self contained and not easily altered. It was used for bomb making recipes, really dreadful porn and many other things that I did not know about. The bad thing was that my name was embedded in the file as the copyright owner of the software. I was not the owner of the contents. Searches on my name find some dreadfully bad stuff attributed to me.

In the world of the internet, I have been writing articles about harmonicas, science fiction, and web development since 1993. Yahoo shows 53,000 pages with Keith P. Graham on them.

I was thinking that it might be better to assume a Net-Name like Keith P. Mansfield to protect myself. It is like closing the barn door after the horse escaped, but in the future it might make a difference.

Cyber Monday

Tuesday, December 2nd, 2008

Here’s how I did on Cyber Monday:

Stars: $98

Google: $26

Chitika: $0.30

Kontera: $1.50 (estimate)

Ebay Partner Network: $5 (Estimate)

The last two sources delay their reports. Ebay might not report until the actual auction closes.

About $130 for one day, which ain’t nothing to sneeze at for such easy work (no work really, I wrote the program three years ago and have been collecting ever since).

Last year I did about $70 on Cyber Monday. Things are generally looking up.

Month to month I’ve been doing about double last year. This November I did about 70% better than last November and if that holds I should do quite well for December. Last December the biggest days were on the first Thursday and Friday of December and then the three days before Christmas. I think Cyber Monday may be a media invention.

Imagine what it would be like if there were no recession!

Boys, Girls, Make Money at Home with Your Computer

Wednesday, November 5th, 2008

It seems unlikely, but I have discovered that several people are reselling my Free Name A Star Certificates on eBay for about $15 (maybe more). They sell the star, go to my site and pay the $2 to get the “Free” off the certificate, print it out with a screen dump of the star map, mail it, and collect the money.

I have thought about this and decided that as long as my role is just to collect my share, it is a good idea. I envision an army of salesmen flooding the world with star certificates, and me making $2 on each one.

It is not the best way for people at home to make money, although probably easy enough.

I figure that a certificate and map on good quality paper costs about $1.

The postage and envelope have to cost about $3 for first class mail and the eBay listing fee is $2.50.

PayPal will cost you another $1.50

That $15 turns into $5 profit.

You might want to subtract out gasoline to the post office. If it takes you 30 minutes to do the whole process, you wind up making about $10 an hour, unless you can figure a way to cut costs. An efficiently run operation might double that and selling 100 stars in a 40 hour week could make a person $25,000 or more a year, hardly worth it unless you charge $20 per registration.

I’ve registered about 44,000 stars since the site went live, although only 1 in 40 is a pay star. I only have about 6,000 left on the list. I don’t remember exactly how I did this and I am wondering if I still have the master list from two years ago in order to add more stars. I hope I don’t run out of stars. I never dreamed that I would register more than 50,000 stars.