Why I ignore TrueTwit Validation Requests

I finally had it with getting direct messages on Twitter asking me to click on a link to validate with TrueTwit because I tried to follow someone. So I did a Google search and found this helpful blog post by Mary C. Long. Everyone who uses TrueTwit or is thinking about doing so should read this.

One of the best things I learned is that if I do not validate with TrueTwit, I am not prevented from following the person who DM’d me. I confirmed this by checking the TrueTwit FAQ.

So, beginning now, I’m ignoring all the validation requests and I no longer have to view the advertisement and type in some lame phrase. I was going to stop validating anyway, but now I am relieved to know that by ignoring TrueTwit exactly nothing happens other than I am spared from viewing an advertisement which serves only to make money for TrueTwit.

I Finally made a decision

Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1I finally made a decision with regard to a tablet. I purchased the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1. There are several reasons I went with this tablet:

  1. I went with Android because I recently upgraded my phone to a Samsung GS 4 and thought that using the same OS would be a plus.
  2. I like the fact that the GN 10.1 has a slot for a Micro SD card to expand the memory.
  3. I like the idea of the stylus that may help with productivity (although I haven’t invested sufficient time to really understand how the sylus can do this).
  4. I like the look and feel of the tablet.

Of course, I am typing this post on that very tablet. I did also purchase a Bluetooth keyboard to allow for quicker typing. The keyboard is a little cramped but not too difficult to get used to. I can type nearly as fast on the tablet as I can on my laptop.

I’ll keep you posted as I learn more abou the tablet and how it improves my workflow.

To iPad or Not to iPad, that is the question

I’m thinking about buying a tablet computer and have begun researching my options. Because of the rich app environment and stability of the Apple platform, I have a slight bias toward the iPad, but not enough of a bias that I would pay more to get an Apple product.

From what I can see in reviews and from playing around with the tablets at Best Buy, I have three basic choices, the iPad, Google Nexus 10 or the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1.

The price for the two Android tablets is around $400 – $450 for 16 GB models and $450 – $500 for the 32 GB models. If I want to get a tablet with 64 GB of storage, I would add a 32 GB Micro SD card to a 32 GB model. Therefore the price point for a 64 GB Android tablet would be $480 – $530.

A look at the Apple web site shows that I can get a refurbished 64 GB iPad 3 (with retina display) for $550. So for just a little bit more money, I could have an iPad with the same storage capacity.

My question is, if I can do this analysis after a few hours of investigation, surely the marketing departments of Google and Samsung can do the same analysis. If they want to establish themselves as iPad killers, why do they price their tablets so high? If you want to sway people away from the market leader you have to do one of two things:

  1. Provide a clearly better product at the same price (neither Android tablet is clearly better)
  2. Provide a similar product at a price low enough to attract people away from the leader

It seems to me that neither Google or Samsung has done either of these.

I haven’t made my choice yet, nor have I fully determined that a tablet would really help my productivity.Two questions:

  1. Is it worth it to plunk down ~$600 for a tablet? Is there sufficient benefit to make this investment?
  2. If so, which way should I go, Apple or Android?

Using an off-line editor

As with most lessons in life, I just learned one the hard way. The lesson I learned is the importance of using an off-line post editor. I spent 45 minutes putting the finishing touches on a post only to have it lost when I clicked the “Save Draft” button.

Since I am Windows based, I normally use Windows Live Writer (WLW) for my post compositions. In this case, I had a draft of a post saved in WordPress and decided to edit it within the WordPress editor rather than using WLW.

My bad, won’t happen again. I will use WLW exclusively.

Bufferapp vs. Hootsuite for Social Media Buffering

social-media-marketingWith the demise of Timely.is for social media buffering, I have been forced to choose between Hootsuite and Bufferapp for this service. I thought that I would take a few minutes and catalog the pros and cons of each and then pick which I think better and will continue to use moving forward.

Bufferapp

Buffer has two levels of service, the free service allows for 2 profiles and 10 updates in the queue for each profile. For $10 per month, you can have unlimited updates and up to 12 profiles. Being the cheapskate that I am, the paid service is out of the question so for the comparison I will comment on the free Bufferapp service.

Pros

  • The apps and extras allow you to work well with Buffer within your favorite browser.
  • Buffer allows the use of your own URL shortening service such as bit.ly
  • The user can schedule how many posts a day get published and at what times they go out.
  • The web interface is easy to use

Cons

  • Limited to 10 posts per profile in the free account
  • Limited to 2 profiles in the free account

Hootsuite

Pros

  • More than two profiles can be managed for free
  • There is no limit to the posts that can be scheduled.
  • Hootsuite emails a very helpful report showing the performance of your posts.
  • Hootsuite has a “hootlet” for the most common browsers that make posting updates very easy.

Cons

  • The user has no control over how many posts go out per day nor when they get sent. I suppose you could take the time to go back in and manually change the scheduled time, but this defeats the purpose of a scheduling service
  • The user is limited to the owl.ly URL shortening service.
  • The “hootlet” for Firefox is a little bit funky and puts the browser name in the Tweet. The hootlet works great in Chrome.

Conclusion

For me the deal breaker with Buffer continues to be the 10 post / 2 profile limits for the free account. Given that there are no such limits with Hootsuite, I have to go with Hootsuite. Sure, I’d like to have all of my URL links tracked in one place using bit.ly, but given the report that Hootsuite sends out, I can get this information with no effort on my part.

The ability to schedule the updates is a nice-to-have but not a deal breaker for me. So the obvious choice for me seems to be Hootsuite at this time.