Monday, July 21, 2014

All about Phishing and Phishers

All about Phishing and Phishers Front
Have you ever encountered a mail saying you've just won a $#insert huge sum here# lottery? 

Or wondered why does the mail address looks suspicious? Such are just a glimpse into the evil machinations of a scammer that uses his online prowess and apparently your lack of, to scam you of your privacy and your money.



What is Phishing?

First comes the definition, Phishing is basically an attempt at finding personal and sensitive information about you. Such information if divulged can lead to compromised accounts and a lot of grief at the end. 

Where Does Phishing Occur?

'Phishing Nets' (Coined by codemakit) is the place from which the scammer starts getting your attention. Most common Phishing nets (in Order of preference of scamsters) is 

1. Email: The most common Phishing location. You can check if your mail is authentic or not (Too many Phishes out here)
2. Social Networks: By posting malicious links at Facebook, Twitter etc. You can check these too (Talking Phishes out here)
3. Websites: By hosting malicious Websites that let you fill forms thereby phishing for your personal information. You can check for Website Certifications (Fake Phishes around here).

What do Phishers want?

The Phishers want your personal information, everything from your email address (Which they can spam later) to your name, address, credit card information etc. (Though, I've given a few tips to protect yourself from divulging your passwords) Once they have enough information about you they can move on towards monetary pleasures. Meaning? They'll use your information against you. For an example, one of the most common phishing nets are Emails and the most common Phishing Practices include being a bank representative. They will probably tell you, that they're from a reputed bank and have your file with them. 

They’ll throw in a few informative pieces of information gathered from you before to let you believe they actually have an official file on you. Then they'll frighten you by stating that you're password is about to expire and if you do not send the required information, your account will be blocked. Once you send the information you can safely say goodbye to all your hard earned income.

The Types of Phishing Techniques

There are 4 different types of Phishing.

1. The good old Bland Phishing

They just send out millions of spams to every email address they could think of and wait if anyone gets caught in their Phishing net and replies.

The good old Bland Phishing

2. Spear Phishing

As the name suggests, This technique is usually adopted by Phishers holding extraordinary grudges against some specific person. Which might be their second grade class teacher or a college professor who dropped him or a show-off neighbor who can't keep his dog quiet at night. The Phishers gain personal information about the particular person (Sometimes he/she already knows). Once they have the information, they'll use it in the way given above to scam you of your money.

Spear Phishing


3. Whaling

Again as the name suggests, Whaling includes phishing for a whale, i.e. a really big corporate honcho or just another person with a lot of green in their reserves. The victims can also be big shot executives who actually hold the rein to the security of their companies' databases. A successful whaling attempt can lead to divulging of company database passwords or the database itself, thus opening the door to countless other phishing attempts. No amount of extreme techniques to store your passwords will keep them safe unless you're willing to save the information from falling into the hands of cunning phishers.

Whaling codemakit

4. Clone Phishing

This is a relatively new technique, where the Phishers create a mail that is really similar to the ones sent by authentic sources. For example, a bank website sending promotional emails are often copied and modified. Then, the modified email containing everything will be sent to the victim. All but one change, the links in the email will be changed so that the user is redirected to the scammers’ website where the user will give its Username and password to login. Only realizing minutes later that he/she was scammed.


Clone Phishing Codemakit

Phishing Terms (codemakit)

Phishing: You already Know it.
Phishing Net: The place where Phishing Starts. (Email, Social Networks, Websites)
Phishers: Scammers who phish for your information
Phisheries: Shady places (might be in Nigeria) where scammers often sit in front of computers wearing an overcoat and dark glasses (Bazinga!). These are the places from where they send/create scam.

Related Reading,

You can read all about The Simple Steps to stay safe Online.
Find out about How Passwords are stored on Websites

Download Complete Report

Now you can download the Complete 23 Page Official Report on Different Types of Phishing Techniques.
You can also download the Funny Version of the Official Phishing Techniques Report, where we make fun of the phishers and their useless attempts at scamming people.

This gave you an introduction into
All about Phishing and Phishers MohitChar

Monday, July 14, 2014

Why to hate twitter

Why to hate twitter Front
Most major companies are looking towards social media for gathering potential customers. But there is one exception, Apple, the iconoclast it has always been, has refused to create a twitter account

According to a mashable report as of September 2009, about 76% of Fortune 500 companies had tweeted less than 500 times. Also, half of the fortune 100 companies had followers less than 50%, which essentially means that neither you nor your company needs large twitter following to reach at the top. Though the major reason the above article was written is to show how less number of tweets led to a lesser number of following but I choose to infer something else.

I would love to cite several interviews conducted at codemakit, like Metin's Advice '[For] people coming from twitter, doesn't bring too much revenue on Adsense when compared to search visitors.’ Jacob Gube of SixRevisions (A pagerank 6 Website) says that 'Social media almost runs itself. We'll check it a couple of times a day just to see if we have any messages.'

This simply means that they do not invest much time for direct intervention on social media or trying to engage customers/Readers on their social media pages. To brainwash you one last time, I would quote an interview of Veerle Pieters from Duoh.com where she said 'I never actively promoted my Twitter so that people would follow me.' (I'm sure I'm not quoting her out of context, if I am, hopefully I'll receive a mail tomorrow).

Since, I've introduced a large number of professionals (all of them disagree with active twitter interaction), I shall now begin to explain, why should you hate twitter?

It is tough (I’d rather eat a pizza)

Active interaction at twitter is a painful job. I’m not talking about those potato Bloggers but about the excruciating regime of posting nice and clever posts from your fateful twitter account (and for god knows whom). Filled with the fallacy that if they post something clever or thought provoking, they are bound to engage audience and promote their brand.

The thinking is partially correct, when you post something mindful, you are engaging your audience, but ask yourselves, does it actually contribute to your company or firm? A BIG NOOO.

140 Characters? My name’s larger than that!

Secondly, I personally feel, that a 140 Character limit is just too d**n low! You cannot be expected to engage your audience and hook potential customers with a bunch of letters hurriedly put together because the message exceeded its limit.

Note. A personal Experience
My personal experience would dictate me to write about the problems faced by me while using twitter in conjunction with hootsuite. Hootsuite is a service that essentially helps you post a message to all your social networks at once, like Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, But the problem I faced was, whenever I try posting a long message to all the social networks at once, The twitter 140 limit somehow crops up and prevents me from sending the message at all. This has actually led many people to distance themselves from Hootsuite. Also, when you add a procedure to forward your facebook posts to twitter, the forwarded post never comes complete and this leads to serious ambiguities.

Word of mouth, faster than the wind

Thirdly, Word of mouth often spreads awesomely fast. Once you see something at twitter and it registers, when you see it often, it fortifies. This is applicable to both positive and negative reviews. You think twitter will be the nicest place where people will comment with nice flowery posts smelling of roses but reality is just a bed of thorns. People often disagree with your services and this leads to negative/Bad reviews. When people see such reviews for sufficient number of times, they become awfully sure that your product is not worth s**t, (I meant salt :-|).

Note. On Word of mouth
I'm sure you wouldn't believe me, have a look at a case study taken up by codemakit research on the perils of starting a popular at the moment blog, where I discussed the cases of web entities which became popular instantly. The only problem occurs when instead of becoming popular, they became instantly unpopular. Take the case of Justin Bieber*, I have no bone to pick with him but when he first started, Social media pounced on him with negative reviews.

Instead of looking at his music, people started looking at his personal life and started judging him. In such cases, social media actually works against the firm/company and blocks many perspective sales. Take Emma Watson* for example, her beauty and acting skills were greatly appreciated by people at social media. Not surprisingly, many of my friends actually went to see her movie just because they had "heard on twitter, she is beautiful". In short it is just a gamble, through twitter you can either increase your sales through the roof or decrease it through your basement.

The Symbols are too @*##ing many!

Fourthly, People are often fed up with too many symbols. Each symbol means something and adds some meaning. The problem with this is, the complete post/series of posts look nothing like people talking but look like people throwing sharp things at each other (Ok here's a #hashtag thrown at your face. Out comes a reply of hot smelling @atsign and kicks you with obnoxious retweets). 

The Symbols are too @*##ing many!


People struggle to grasp the concept and the "omniscient" people at twitter pay no heed to it. Hence it looks something obscure and there goes your aim of connecting with people.

Not enough people to read

Finally, there aren't many twitter users in the world. Take a look at a study by statista Facebook had 1184 million active users, Google+ at 300 Million and Twitter at meager 232 million users followed by Tumblr at 230 million. So, if you still want to promote your company through social media, you are better off with Google+ and Facebook than with twitter.

Now, codemakit would be called as a hypocrite if I do not explain the presence of @codemakit on twitter. I shall stick with my principles that having an account at twitter isn't a blasphemy, but incessant posting of 140 character crap trying to gain visitors/ customers is.
Codemakit seldom posts anything out of the blue and just relies on post forwarding service by an RSS service known as feedburner just to make sure that the bored minds using twitter have something interesting to read.

* The Examples quoted here are my views and is not intended to provoke/hurt anyone. Visitors are requested to read at their own discretion.

This was all about,
Why to hate twitter MohitChar

Monday, July 7, 2014

When was a Webpage Updated

When was a Webpage Updated
Ever wanted to find when was a webpage updated? Here are some methods to find out when a webpage was updated. We'll be discussing several methods to find when a webpage was updated. 

For example the WayBack machine method, change Detection method and JavaScript method.



The WayBack Machine

One of the most popular methods for non-programmers is the wayback machine method. Codemakit had already discussed the method in one of its previous articles on the Internet Archivist.

It is a project by 'The Internet Archive' a non-profit enterprise which has been receiving data from Alexa and many websites. In short it is a type of library that stores versions of your website.

WayBack Machine


The usage is awfully clear, you need to enter the URL of the website which you need to check in the search bar and press enter. The previous version would be right before your eyes. Now it must be clear that you cannot use the Wayback machine for determining the last updated version of a website that needs a login before you enter, simply because, the website would need authentication.
Another problem is you would not get a very accurate date. For a smaller/ not so popular website it would be in the range of a month. If you need a more accurate method of finding when your page was updated, keep reading.

Change Detection Method

A website known a change detection also performs a similar task but differently. Here you need to paste the URL of the page and your email address. So, whenever the website/Webpage URL changes, you'll be the first one to receive a notification. The only problem with this method is you will not be able to get any historical data. The mails would start from the point when you enter the email address and never before.

Change Detection


The JavaScript Method

The JavaScript method is by far the most simple and the most effective method i have found to determine the last updated/modified version of the webpage. The steps too are simple.
  1. Go to the URL you need
  2. Paste the following code "alert(document.lastModified)" (without the quotes)
  3. Now type the following on the code "javascript:" (without the quotes) *
  4. Such that the complete code looks like "javascript:alert(document.lastModified)" (without the quotes)
  5. Press enter **

The steps are outlined below,

JavaScript Method


* Note. It is very important that you type in the code in third step. It doesn't seem to work without it. The code is said to work in all major browsers and gives the most accurate time and date.

** Note. You need to remember that the results are in the MM/DD/YYYY format and the Time is in HH:MM:SS format. This is particularly useful when you have a date as 01/04/2014.

This answered your Question,
When was a Webpage Updated MohitChar

Monday, June 30, 2014

Optimum Number of Images for a Webpage

Optimum Number of Images for a Webpage
Text has been the pioneer in information dissemination. But the ball has now left the court. In the digital age of high speed broadband internet, Text based websites are soooo 1980s.

A post from yola.com depicted clearly, the need to strike a balance between visual and text content on a website.

It is said that your readers often create impressions about your website in just 50 milliseconds, so do you think huge chunk of text is going to help the reader to form a really nice opinion about your website, instead a nice image would attract attention and if the reader likes it, he/she would move further. 

This technique is risky, because if the reader does not like the image, you'll receive a "hmmf" and the reader will move along.  As is evident, until now, the article is actually in confirmation to a few concepts of Website/ SEO Psychology.

However, It has a much higher probability of luring the readers into reading/ using your website than a chunk of smart looking text.

Ask Yourself What did you see first


But you know, anything in excess is never good. So how do you know, if you've over-rainbowed your website. How do you know when your website stops being an informative/productive/inspiring website and starts becoming an abomination made by an overweight pixie puking colorful paste?

Too many Images? BLUNDER!

In simple words, Adding too many images for a webpage (not a website) can cause some serious repercussions,
  1. Image will load glacially slow (That means so slow, that you’ll grow a beard). Your page speed will suffer and so will you.
  2. If you do not use a free resource like blogger, you’ll need to host the images somewhere, hosting needs space for storage and that would require money which will be taken from your pocket.
  3. Also too many images sometime puts off the readers. They get the impression that you did not have enough content and so you’re compensating by adding lots and lots of images.

Too less Images? BLOOPER!

But if you have too less images, it can cause some serious damage too.

  1. Less images would bore your visitors, If numerous images would have you growing flowing beard then after 5 minutes of lengthy article without images, you will have a bored skeleton sitting in front of a computer.
  2. Lesser images without significant breaks lead to people skipping some juicy parts of your article.


Images on Website Type?

Just like your Bounce rate depends of the type of website you have, similarly in the case of images, it all depends on the type of work you do. If you're a photographer or a design enthusiast, your website will have to show in the same manner. If you're a brooding extra mindful persona, you'll automatically use”no nonsense full of text” methodology. The eye tracking study of web readers by nngroup claim that users will read more text on newspaper websites than they do at any websites.

Psychologically, this is because they actually visit the newspaper websites to gain information, to know about things and also because many people sitting at offices are not able to visit many websites and hence resort to the ones that are not blocked by their IT dept./Government (Digress..) The same analogy can be seen in links too. People often say, the higher the number of links you have better is your page, but it’s not true every time.

The Results

My philosophy is to micromanage and document. At codemakit I tend to delve deep and after research I put forward values and processed data. For Example, The Ideal blog posting schedule for a week  or The one about what page rank should you have to reach top 500 of all websites, So here I have attempted to micromanage and tell how many images are optimum for a webpage (for different types of webpages).

Mind you, the table is created after hours of grueling research, using two different methods for the analysis and comparing. The study revolved around the top 500 websites of the world by Alexa as per 11th June 2014. Several websites were selected. Ones in language other than English were rooted out. Ones that need authentication (like Facebook, Reddit etc.) before letting the visitors enter were removed. Ones with objectionable content were not considered.





Finally the values are arrived by using weighted average method. The complete Study on "The Optimum Number of Images for a Website Type" is available now in pdf.


Type Images
Forum Type Websites 7
Photosharing Websites 10
Brand Specific Websites 10
Banking Websites 12
Shopping Websites 35
Product review Websites 56
Group Blogs 83
Newspaper Group Websites 130
Entertainment Websites 145

So what is bad? Bad is when you mix things up. When a simple blogger uses so many images that the page uses an hour to load on the reader's computer. When loaded the page greets the user now sitting with a face full of white beard. If you’re so hell bent on using images for every little piece of text you have, use it in awesome ebook covers and magazines. But remember “The moment you overdo anything, you're in trouble.”

Note,

Google webmaster guidelines clearly state, you should not embed important text in images, use alt text for images, also the image must be conducive to the text you've published (You do not see an image of a puppy in this webpage, because it is out of context)

But nowhere has anything been mentioned about the optimum number of images a webpage might have (Not even the hyped “How search Works” by Google. So, I posted a question at Google’s Webmaster Forum in search of professional opinion. You can see the topic here, But There was no response from that side. Maybe my question was convoluted. :-(

This was about,
Optimum Number of Images for a Webpage MohitChar

Monday, June 23, 2014

Why do you need a multilingual website

Why do you need a multilingual website
Learn how you lose about 95% of your visitors and how to get them back. Demographics play an exceedingly pivotal role in determining the fate of your website. Language does pose a barrier if you want your blog to go truly global. 

Codemakit ran an article on “Why do some countries hate your website?” answering the question how a simple change in spelling can cause your blog to stop receives visitors/readers from certain countries. On similar lines, the language in which your blog was written in bounds the overall reach of your blog.

Languages Based on Mother Tongue

According to Wikipedia, the percentage of world population speaking English is about 5.43%. Considering many WebPages and websites are now made in English, you would wonder, that you're losing about 94.57 % of your potential readers just by writing in English!

Table 1 : Languages (Mother Tongue) spoken by people around the world

Rank Language Native speakers (millions) % of world population
1,
Mandarin
955*
14.40%
2,
Spanish
405*
6.15%
3,
English
360*
5.43%
4,
Hindi
310*
4.70%
5,
Arabic
,295*
4.43%
Source : Wikipedia Retrieved on 10th June 2014

Here comes the need for a language specific approach towards webpage creation. But there is a catch; the above data is basically for mother tongues. So 5.43% of the world's population has their mother tongue as English. (Now the figures do not disappoint).

Languages Acquired By Readers

But what if your mother tongue is not English and for answers you have to look towards English content on the web. So you use the language skills hammered in by your teachers at school and look for content published in English. Using this scenario in mind, you get almost 27% of the world as your potential readers. (Now that is pretty and believable)

Table 2 : Languages (Acquired) spoken by people around the world

Rank Language Internet users Percentage
1 English 565004000 27.00%  
2 Chinese 509965000 25.00%  
3 Spanish 164969000 8.00%  
4 Japanese 99182000 5.00%  
5 Portuguese 82587000 4.00%  
Source : Wikipedia Retrieved on 10th June 2014

Languages of Existing Webpages

In the previous Para we discussed a problem. A Problem often faced by readers all over the world. You do not find WebPages with content in your language. Would you like to hear what the language most websites are made of is? The answer not surprising is English or Anglais (I'm learning French). But what alarms is not the language, but the sheer number of WebPages using the language. What would be your estimate? Huh? 20% or 25% or 35%? Prepare to be floored; it is a whopping 56%, followed by 6% of Russian and 6% of German.

Table 3 : Webpages Existing on the web (Based on Languages)

Rank   Language   Percentage
English 55.70%  
Russian 6.00%  
German 6.00%  
Japanese 5.00%  
Spanish 4.60%  
Source : Wikipedia Retrieved on 10th June 2014

This was the problem I was talking about. You need answers; you have a presentation/ test/ viva tomorrow and all you find are WebPages in English. Hence you force yourself to plough deep into the webpage and try to understand the obscure language (The sentence might be futile for codemakit readers reading the blog in English). This might lead to visitors leaving webpage in search of a non Shakespearean website where the language is much simpler. This would increase your bounce rate, maybe this is the reason why your blog is not growing.

A Comparison

Here's a comparison of the languages discussed above.

Table 4 : Comparison of Languages, Based on demographics, Analytics and Website Content.

Rank Language
(Mother tongue)
Language
(Internet Users)
Language
(Website Content)
1
Mandrin
English
English
2
Spanish
Chinese
Russian
3
English
Spanish
German
4
Hindi
Japanese
Japanese
5
Arabic
Portuguese
Spanish
Source : Wikipedia Retrieved on 10th June 2014

Conclusion

In conclusion, it is evident from the fact that we would always like to be presented with content in our language, and the apparent lack of content on the web based on reader demographics, we should strive towards WebPages/ Websites with localized content presented in local languages. Even General Elections of countries were affected because of such tactics. Online Giants are doing it (Example : the Case of Wikipedia) and so should you (Unless you’re a potato blogger)

This answered your Question
Why do you need a multilingual website MohitChar

Monday, June 16, 2014

7 Best Free Image Websites without Watermarks

7 Best Free Websites without Watermarks
How often have you felt the need of a really nice image for your blog but all you can find are stock images charging you 1.29$ or 3.99$ for a single image. You try and optimize images you already have and you put on a long face cursing the website for the outrageous prices and move on?

But you know, high resolution photographs and images are often a major requirement for a better web design, this has been said even by design experts like, Jacob Gube and Steven Snell

Codemakit presents to you the best of the best image websites hosting free images for your benefit, Images that do not have a grotesque watermark at the center, Images that do not need any attribution (some that allow you to use for commercial purposes too) and definitely no websites that charge you outrageous amounts for seemingly stupid images. These need no attribution (some might), are absolutely free and you are free to meddle with them (almost).

Codemakit has always tried to bring you a comparison of the best. Never has it presented its own opinions on its readers. Take the examples of the Top 8 form creation websites or A comparison of Free storage for your website or even the recent Best Office websites of 2014. When you see the top competitors (each offering a different approach) you connect with them and finally bookmark them.

Stock Free Images

Stock Free images by far contain one of the most vibrant collections of stock free images (Ahem). The images are free to download, displaying image size, and dimensions along with sharing options.

Stock Free Images

Free Images

Free images, A UK based website, too has a really nice collection of images from around the world. My advice to them is to start working on the SEO side of their website. Otherwise everything else is nice, mate!

Free Images

Pixel Perfect

Pixel perfect as the name suggests delves mainly on the microscopic images (Not Literally). It has featured really close-up images of everyday objects. But let me tell you, the close ups are high resolution and looks just perfect.

Pixel Perfect

UnProfound

Unprofound was started by Jim in 2001. Though his website has been attracting a lot of attention lately because of the sheer number and quality of images it hosts. But he still needs to work on his website.

UnProfound

Foter

Foter is by far the best website in terms of website design, and functionality. The landing page does not boast of overly beautiful images and sunset beach photos, but just a search bar where you need to type in your query and the engine would comply.

Foter

Morgue

Morgue file, though a small website with a little collection to offer is still workable as the pictures are of high quality and often meet the standards set by the webmasters. (p.s. It is the best website for photography students)

Morgue

Public Domain Archive

Public domain archive is an altogether different website. A professionally designed website filled with a really beautiful High resolution images. Codemakit tried contacting Matt the founder of this project for an interview but couldn't get through. I guess I would have to post a public invitation (So Matt if you're reading this, you are invited for an interview with codemakit)

Public Domain Archive

As is the custom, codemakit provides a complete comparison of all websites that have been studied in terms of functionality, web design and above all, content. Though the websites have been ranked, the readers not familiar with codemakit website rating (CWR) system can have a look at the rating document of Website Ratings.


Rank Name Download
Available
Creative
Commons
Free Codemakit
Index
1
Public Domain Archive
Yes
Yes
Yes
A2
2
Pixel Perfect Digital
Yes
Yes
Yes
A3
3
Stock Free Images
Yes
NA
Yes
A3
4
Foter
Yes
Yes
Yes
B1
5
Free Images
Yes
NA
Yes
B2
6
Morguefile
Yes
Yes
Yes
B2
7
UnProfound
Yes
NA
Yes
C1

Related reading,

Photo Editor Online: Edit your images on the go, Learn to edit your photographs and images online.

This was about,

Monday, June 2, 2014

Simple Way to Convert excel tables to HTML

Simple Way to Convert excel tables to HTML
Many webmasters and bloggers not hailing from a web design back ground often feel the need to convert an excel file into html. But they want to achieve this feat without the unnecessary coding, hit-and-trials or head banging. 

One must admit, A method of converting an excel worksheet into its html counterpart is difficult. Owing to lack of options webmasters often resort to taking screenshot of the tables and inserting it as an image in the blog. Arguably, this is a great method to insert tables into a webpage, but it does not perform the job. The following are reasons why inserting table as an image is wrong.

  1. It does not look good
  2. Your readers cannot click
  3. They cannot copy the text (for which, even codemakit method cannot help)
  4. The image might perform weird in a mobile device
  5. The text and the table prepared by you so meticulously will not be read by search engines
  6. It shows lack of finesse in the blog


* You cannot just copy and paste the table text as alt txt in images, because large text in Alt-Text defies Blogger Policies.

So, looks like you're going to need HTML table. Now that I've established your need for HTML tables I shall present a solution.

First, open the table containing the spreadsheet. Save it as a .csv file.

Excel to HTML Sample


Excel to HTML Sample


* A .csv file is a comma separated values file, here the values are separated by commas, which makes it easier for online web applications to convert.

Excel to HTML Sample


Next, go to http://www.tablesgenerator.com/html_tables

Excel to HTML Table Generator


Click on file - Upload .csv File and Upload.

Excel to HTML Table Generator


Now you'll be presented with a raw version of your html table. You can make modifications, change font type, size, justification, color, cell color etc.

Excel to HTML Table Generator


Every update will be reflected at the newly created html-CSS file at the bottom of the page.

This was,
Simple Way to Convert excel tables to HTML Mohitchar

Monday, May 26, 2014

Why some countries hate your website

Why some countries hate your website front
Its 2:00 AM and you're sitting in front of your computer with chips in one hand and a beverage in another. You are reviewing the analytics data. Where do the visitors come from? Where do they go?  Which pages they visit and for what time etc. 

You start thinking, "Hey! Why are my visitors more from US than UK. Why are there minimal visitors in China and why are hordes of them in Australia?"

The answer though mind boggling, is quite simple indeed. Before getting into the details of the visitor demographics Let us get rid of some irrelevant factors.

Is it Blocked?

There is a lot of speculation regarding website metrics in China. Some report large number of visitors some report a fraction of its fraction. With the government exercising excessive control over what can be published or what can be viewed, one thing can be concluded with surety, it is not your fault if your website does not receive thundering applause from china or any other country.

Chances are your website has been blocked there. (However, there is a way to find if your website is blocked). Same might be the case with some Middle East countries too. Though you can still move around it, but that’s not the point.

New Google Algorithm?

"Change must always be embraced", the supposed motto of the people working at Google Search, The Guys sitting there are responsible for any modification in the search algorithm used by Google.

With a simple change from their side, cause great repercussions in the visitor inflow in our websites. So that cannot be ruled out. You can actually see through a case study, how Google's algorithm change lead to the change in visitors geographically.

The Actual Reason

Now that we've removed them from our scope, we can focus on much more pressing issues on hand. Why do some countries love your articles and some do not? Do you offend the countries? Or is there some problem with your language? (As an accent cannot be a problem in written content). The answer is really simple. "Spelling".

Color or Colour or Couleur?

It is the way you spell your words that makes the difference. let us look at some examples from Wikipedia. Like for the simplest of example. A word used extensively in almost all websites, "Colour" or "Color". 

It is fascinating to note that the word is spelt "color" in United States but is spelt as "Colour" in almost all English speaking countries. (French however introduce another twist and spell it as "Couleur").

Color example

Organisation or Organization?

Another example can be "Organisation" or "Organization". This one however is a tricky one. UK, New Zealand, South Africa are known to use it interchangeably. US on the other hand prefer "Organization".


The Story

My friend used to wonder why his blog receives more visitors from US and not from India, his target audience. His was a commercial website and he started a blog to help in sales. But the website received more visitors from outside the country and his sales started to drop. 

Simple psychology says, “you would obviously buy from the nearby shop than order from abroad”. His puzzlement increased when the blog started to increase visitors, actually started hurting his income as most readers were from United States. His competitors got the better of him and he was going to shut down for good.

The answer to the problem is simple enough. The man used Microsoft Word to spell check his blog posts or Item descriptions. His plan to avoid spelling errors actually backfired. What he didn't know was the spell check in Microsoft word in his system was preset at English (US). So, confusing words were automatically corrected to those spelled in US. He used to post the spell checked article at his blog. 

How do Spellings Affect your Website?

Let us suppose he had an article named the "Colors of Flowers". When a needy slash curious person from India/UK types in the search string, "Flower Colours", she/he would not be presented with my friend's article. 

But when another needy slash curious guy from US types in the string "Flower Colors", he will be presented with my friend's article. This is how your spellings could change who you cater to.

Now increasing the usability of this concept by a notch, we can safely say that if you want your visitors from a specific country, set your spell check in that language. The steps are outlined here,

How to change the preset Language in Microsoft Office


  1. First click on Review Tab in Microsoft Word 2007.
  2. In the proofing option, select "Set Language".
  3. Now you'll be presented with a window containing all languages. Select the one you find suitable and click OK. You’re good to go.

How to change the preset Language in Microsoft Office

This answered your question
Why some countries hate your website MohitChar

Monday, May 19, 2014

Add RSS Feeds to Outlook Mailbox

Add RSS Feeds to Outlook Mailbox front
The professionals working at offices often get bored out of their wits at the end. What do they do? The computer issued to them often blocks a plethora of websites (Though some even help you in your work) that could provide a shred of decent, entertaining break they deserve. But, what if you could use your office issued technology to your advantage? 


When you could not open a website at your workstation (Simply because it is blocked), You can use your office issued email to access the content that has been kept away from you. For that you need your office issued mailbox. There are two very simple ways of accessing content that has been denied to you. 

The First Way

First, Subscribe. A lot of offices with a comparatively lenient IT department allow you to receive email subscriptions on your office mail.

However, If that is not the case, You should move to the second way which albeit interesting is a bit convoluted.

The Second Way

First find your personal folder in the mailbox, as depicted in the image below.
The folder will be named "RSS Feeds"

Add RSS Feeds to Outlook Mailbox sample

Now right click on the folder and select "Add a new RSS Feed"

You'll be presented with a simple window asking you to provide the feed details. (It is here when the RSS feed becomes really important. For more information on RSS feeds for any website or How to find the RSS Feed of a website, you could read some of codemakit previous articles.

Add RSS Feeds to Outlook Mailbox sample

Now after authenticating the RSS feed, just click enter and you're good to go.

Add RSS Feeds to Outlook Mailbox sample

After this, any new content on the website will be available instantly, as RSS feeds to your inbox. Let us assume, the Safety conscious IT guys do not know about our little arrangement.

This Showed about,
Add RSS Feeds to Outlook Mailbox MohitChar

Friday, May 16, 2014

The Digital Face of India' s Elections

The Digital Face of India's General Elections
How was India's General Elections affected by Facebook and Twitter. Can social media be effective enough to reach the one Billion mark? Find out everything about the Digital Face of India's General Elections through this comprehensive report.

India has long poised to be a super power. Change, in a country of elephantine (over 1.3 Billion or 130 Crores) is difficult unless it is aided by external agencies. 

With the influx of social media in the general population of India, It is hardly a coincidence that Digital media played an important role in the General Elections.


Just because of Elections, Hundreds of Firms started, Thousands of “Popular at the moment” Websites (This article is one of them) were created and millions of pages on election proceedings were created to capitalize on the awareness about the politicos. Numerous social media accounts were created, from twitter to Facebook to even Pinterest, Spam flowed like Water, Search Engine Optimization specialists were hired, Some even had a personal digital/IT team. In short, the political leaders never left a stone unturned to connect with general public. It is worthy to note that surprisingly Electronic media wasn't in much use in the last General elections sans some occasional Website advertisements by websites monetizing their content.

Last Elections : The Dawn of Digitization

Until 2009 Shashi Tharoor was one of the handful of Indian Politicians who had a twitter account and could manage to garner 6,000 Followers, a number currently risen to more than 2.1 Million (21 Lakhs). 

With India's top politicos taking advantage of public's new found love for digital networking, We see people like Narendra Modi having 3.9 Million (39 Lakh) twitter followers and Arvind Kejriwal at 1.7 Million (17 Lakh). It seems the one who embraced the digital sphere most effectively, got the spoils. 

Current Elections : The Plunge into Digitization

D S Rawat of the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (Assocham) had once said that political parties spend about 30% of their total budget on advertisements of which near 15% is spent at Social media. 

Google Doodle on India's Election Results Day

If you have a look at Google Trends, a facility for determining the current and historical search trends for any term, You would find that the election commission received nationwide attention (because of one reason or another). 

Twitter, 140 Characters shouted into a Microphone

Twitter actually played an important part in the elections because of its unique feature of certified identities (Similar to Website certification). If you follow @superstarrajinikant or @barackobama, you know that the twitter account in question is actually of the celebrity or politician you want. 

Some thoughts on Digitization of Elections by Narendra Modi


When you receive a tweet from their account, you feel the rush as the words were actually written by them. There is no sure shot way to find that out in Facebook. But then again not all accounts on twitter counts, a study by Twopcharts claimed that "30% of existing Twitter accounts have sent 1-10 tweets and only 13% of the accounts have written at least 100 tweets." 

Google's Labours

Google too had left no stone unturned to capitalize on the situation. Its brand new Google Election Hub received thundering response from Google users in India. With its “Know your Candidates” section, Indian Voters from across the country can find out every little detail about the leaders at their constituency. 

For example you can see all the details about Mr. Narendra Modi in the image given below as stored by Google. The election hub has obviously helped users nationwide with its “Trends Section” depicting information in ever so tasteful manner, through info-graphics and tables and finally the “Hangouts” section quenching your thirst for more detail through videos.

Google Elections Hub : Screenshots


Some things were not directly affected by Google. Some had a more subtle approach. Android games by unaffiliated developers like "Modi Run" or "Kursi Cricket" and some by Officials like the Election Commission App for voting killed two birds with an arrow. First by making voting a pleasurable experience and second by creating awareness or at least piquing curiosity about political parties.

Current Trending Searches on Google

The spike was most pronounced in this year's election as the EC was pelted with a handful of controversies. However out of the four, it was Modi who could capitalize on the elections perfectly and time its digital prowess. Modi Received a Spike during 2013 during his campaigning for a second term in Gujarat elections. He received second spike when his name came up for the post of Prime Minister during General Elections in India and the third one because of the results. 

Rahul Gandhi enjoyed a peak during 2013 but somehow failed to regain that caliber again. Arvind Kejriwal on the other hand was practically nonexistent some months before the Delhi elections but rose quite quickly.


Facebook, The Blue Giant to the rescue

Facebook too started an "I am a voter" feature on their page, where facebook users of legal age would receive reminding them that voting process has started in their constituency. Facebook with a total number of users at 1.23 billion (123 Crores) has a largest market in US with 183 million (18.3 Crore) users. India comes in hard by crossing 100 million (10 Crore) recently. Like Google, the Blue Giant also launched “Election Tracker app” which tracks political candidates and provides real time information to general public.

Top 5 Facebook User Countries


At Facebook the number of likes received by Facebook pages of major Political parties too played an important role in determining the results of the elections, For example BJP received 4.5 Million (45 Lakh) Likes until the end of this monstrous democratic exercise. AAP at 2.1 Million (21 Lakh), Congress at 3.3 million (33 Lakh) etc.

The Future : The something-something of Digitization

In both developing and developed nations, the desktop users for the social Giant is surely increasing but the growth is not as admirable as the ones through mobile network. With the advent of better, smarter and larger Phones and PDAs, the approach towards social medium like Facebook and twitter has never been so wide. Now, one can access the website through ones mobiles (Android, IOS, Firefox OS etc.), through tablets, desktops and even smart Televisions either with an app or a browser. 

With Indian Smartphone users growing from 750 Million (75 Crores) in 2013 to Four Times in 2020 the amount of Facebook/Twitter users through a Smartphone is sure to increase manifold.

The final verdict, social media is soon going to take place of word of mouth communication and slowly but surely, several nations will follow. One cannot pin high hopes for developed nations like US because of their current total population is 317 million and they cannot increase from 183 million any faster. 


However, what one can pin on is that the number of users in Digital India is sure to increase. This is not because we just reached 100 million (10 Crore) Facebook users out of a whooping 1300 Million (130 Crore), but because we have just seen the power of digital media in influencing the world's largest democratic exercise.


Related Reading

Business Standard ran an awesome article on the 6 types of Social Media Abuses in Elections,

ESocialSceiences conducted a study on the effects of Social Media on Lok Sabha Elections.

Simply 360, an India based web analytics firm released a presentation on the Elections.

We showed you
The Digital Face of India's General Elections MohitChar