What to do before upgrading your Mac to OS X Lion

Installing Lion? Be sure to consult Joe Kissell’s ebook “Take Control of Upgrading to Lion.”

If you have a Mac and have concerns about upgrading to the Lion operating system (expected to be released at any minute), good news: You can get clear step-by-step directions and advice from Joe Kissell’s new ebook “Take Control of Upgrading to Lion” ($10).

This not an idle recommendation on my part. I’ve been using Joe’s ebooks about operating system software for years. On several occasions they’ve saved me from making decisions about software configurations that I would have later regretted.

Joe takes the surprises out of the process — you know, the part where you find out two days after installation that the scanner you want to use right now won’t work with the new operating system. Really, there’s no need for that to happen. Joe’s ebook explains how to check your current software and hardware in advance so you know about potential glitches and can make adjustments before the upgrade screws up your workflow.

Those of you who might be planning on calling me if Lion gets confusing should know that I’ve already got an answer to your questions. That would be: Download “Take Control of Upgrading to Lion” and use it!

Twitter? (yawn) Don’t bother.

Advertising? Twitter has jumped the shark and is diving for the bottom with the fail whale hot on its tail.

My clients are, of course, anxious to get the most mileage out of their blogs by teasing their posts on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter.

By looking at statistical analyses of the blogs, we can see which of those teases are actually attracting readers. It’ll be no news to anyone that in most cases, the Facebook referrals are on the way up. Referrals from Google searches remain strong, and LinkedIn referrals are stable. But Twitter?

Young businesswoman sitting at desk yawning at Twitter
Are we tired of Twitter? (Photo: iStock)

Hello? Hello? Is anyone using Twitter any more?

I realized with a shock that I’d stopped using Twitter myself. I spend more time scanning Xydo.com (“social news evolved”) and paper.li newsletters (sent to me by email) and visiting Facebook (for community and social information) and LinkedIn (for hardcore professional networking news).

What’s going on with Twitter?

News that in two months Twitter will be injecting un-removable advertising posts into my Twitter stream was the signal that, for my purposes, Twitter has jumped the shark and is diving for the bottom with the fail whale hot on its tail. Enough users already are degrading Twitter with 40 posts a day of meaningless marketing babble that managing a Twitter stream has become a royal pain; stuffing advertising into the mix will soon raise stream-quality levels to unacceptable.

Nanny EdgeRank decides who you get to play with on Facebook

How EdgeRank controls the updates we do (and don’t) see on Facebook.

What did I tell you about going over to Susie's Wall? (iStock photo)

I’m willing to put up with a fair amount of behind-the-scenes nannying by a website in return for a clean, easy-to-use interface. Thus my reluctant acceptance of the way Facebook mysteriously feeds me way too much info from Kevin and prevents me from seeing the updates posted by Eloise.

Turns out the real nanny deciding which friends I should play with is something called EdgeRank, which manages this convoluted process for Facebook.

In this excellent article on lockergnome.com, Kelly Clay explains the EdgeRank system in detail.

Social media tips — from 1966

A social media study from 1966 explains word of mouth persuasion.

David Aaker, blogging for the the Harvard Business Journal, brings back into the spotlight Ernest Dichter’s classic study on word of mouth persuasion — nearly 50 year’s after Dichter’s original findings appeared in the same publication.

Aaker’s article explains why they still hold true today.

The cure for Internet over-subscription

You’re subscribed to RSS feeds, Twitter streams, email newsletters, and blogs. In short, you’re subscribed to so much online content that you’ve taken to ignoring it. Even hiding from it. You need a filter for your filter, but you’re too tired to set one up.

I’ve stumbled across one that does at least part of the job, and does is so well that I’m addicted. It’s called paper.li.

Sign-up took about a minute. I gave paper.li access to my Twitter account and it turned my Twitter feed (where I control subscriptions) into a beautiful newspaper. Now I see not an endless stream of Tweets but a “front page” index of Tweets (ones that have links), turned into teasers and links with photos. News is conveniently divided into sections (Technology, Politics).

There is limited customization. You can:

  • Change the name of your paper
  • Modify the content stream (which begins with you and those you follow) to add users, lists, hash tags, keywords on Twitter and keywords on Facebook.

Changes will appear in the next edition of your paper.

Paper.li is not perfect, but now, instead of ignoring everything, I’m seeing some great stuff in my paper. At least two or three of the stories inspire me to blog, so I’ll be doing more with WriterWay.

%d bloggers like this: