Get Better Search Rankings Through Hyperlinking

21 03 2010

Photo: Stock.Xchng

Get Noticed Now.

Use Hyperlinks For Better Search Ranks

It’s such a familiar object and so prevalent in everyday life that it’s almost easy to overlook the significance of the hyperlink . If you are unaware what a hyperlink is, please read on or select this hyperlink. </sarcasm>

A hyperlink, or “link,” is a virtual reference to a document or source online that a reader can follow automatically and directly to information. According to Rodolfo Baggio and Magda Corigliano’s On the Importance of Hyperlinks: A Network Science Approach, “hyperlinks are the essence of the World Wide Web.”

Hyperlinks provide a rapid means to interconnect relevant data in non-sequential order.  Baggio explains that this process mimics “the associative nonlinear process” that people use to logically search for inter-related information. Meaning, the information is linked in a way that is useful to the users and makes the Internet easier to surf.

Hyperlinking grew extensively with the commercialization of the Internet. With the masses came common topics and social interests that served as the mechanisms underlying the proliferation of links. This collective interest favored the build up of ‘communities of interest,’ like our beloved social media structures.  Links now represent the social ties between the individuals who own Web sites. Often, they’re sites more interesting than this one. ; )

However, hyperlinks are more than just a quick reference to data. Search engines, like google, use hyperlinks and thier respective uses to rank the positioning of your Web site on its search result pages. Baggio explains “the nature of the links between sites is one of the major determinants of a Web site’s positioning,” and that it’s “crucial to online success.”

Hyperlinks are pivotal to building better positioning for SEOs. Likewise, Ben Cotton of Social Web Thing offers advice on how to best economize your social media presence and how to best diversify your online portfolio to “boost your personal SEO.” This is a great compilation of Web advice I wish I would have seen a couple years ago. It features a lot of common sense best practices that otherwise would had taken a while to understand.

About.com suggest that you don’t add “Click Here” type links, but rather to add relevant links to increase your page rank amongst Web searches. The relevance factor increases your composite ranking based on how many links you have, who you are linked to, the number of links used and the relevance. About issues these best practices for users:

  • Use links to highlight relevant words or phrases.
  • Use links to move readers between your own Web pages.
  • Don’t over link. A sea of blue links means nothing will stand out.

And most importantly, don’t “click here,” “read more,” or look at “this.”

Now that we have mastered hyperlinks, let’s work on the Call to Action Button!





UOTasers

2 07 2009

taser

Photo: stock.xchang

Shocked Over UO’s TASER Push

The Univ. of Oregon’s Campus Security Propose Taser Use

Over the last year the University of Oregon began to explore the option of implementing the use of less-than-lethal ‘electrocution devices,’ more commonly referred to as TASERs, within the campus security division, The Department of Public Safety (DPS). This development seemingly occurred after the Eugene Police Department (EPD), the local community law enforcement, chose to augment peace officers with TASER devices.

The change for the Police Department seems to be reasonably intuitive. In a move to continue adequate protection to their officers and the aggregate community, the police simultaneously sought to reduce the lethal response in apprehending suspects. This is just plain responsibility and good PR.

However, the Department of Public Safety is contrarily increasing risk and capability of harm without the presenting the necessity of escalation. This brinksmanship is not in accordance to any shift in policy and is completely unsubstantiated by the most recent crime statistics.

The most recent crime statistics available from the University of Oregon indicate that crimes in all areas have decreased substantially over the past three years.  The vast majority of campus crimes are alcohol and drug related; most of which were seemingly misdemeanor crimes in nature.

Statistics show that within the 2005 to 2007 three-year period there have been 1279 liquor law violations on or near campus and 613 drug related violations. Within the same three-year period there were only two weapon violations. Proportionately, contrast those figures to the 20,000 students on the University campus yearly and the number of weapon violations seems insignificant. There seems to be a disproportionate urge for TASER use according to the deficiency of major crimes or violent offenses.

Even without a substantiated cause for the devices, the Department of Public Safety is introducing a safety concern for the individuals whom they may be shocking. Some suspects that may have or had significant health problems may be more susceptible to major health complications and possibly death when shocked, albeit a statistically insignificant portion. However, according to Amnesty International, TASERs have been attributed to 300 fatalities around the world up to June of 2008.

Estimates indicate that 345,000 TASERs have been sold in the US alone and that approximately 50 people have died from complications inflicted by TASER use in the US, according to CBS News.

Although the numbers seem relatively low on an aggregate scale, the university cannot afford a single death on campus, especially not at the hands of the campus safety, and most notably not when there wasn’t any major, or minor, necessitation for such use. The university and its employed departments should not allow themselves to contribute to the death of students, in any capacity. It is simply unacceptable. That, my friend, is bad PR.

Regardless of the lack of justification, the instruments may be placed in the hands of the wrong individuals anyways. According to the data produced for the NYPD by the Rand Corporation, the youngest “rookie” designation of police officers were found to be most associated with unnecessary utility of force. The findings indicated a high correlation between inexperienced officers and weapons use. Inexperienced uniformed officers, with more training than DPS officers, composed the demographic most prone towards unnecessary weapons use.

On the financial side of things, the implementation of TASERs on the University of Oregon campus will cost about $20,000 to arm the police force and an additional $20,000 to train them. Not to mention that these DPS positions are generally used as a stepping stone to law enforcement positions and retain a relatively high turnover rate for the transitioning employees. Additional officers would further exacerbate the cost associated with annual training, which is necessary regardless.

The university and its public safety officers could use these funds more efficiently to produce an even safer campus, if they really felt that it was justifiable in the first place.

I propose that the university should use the $40,000 dollars that would go towards purchasing the TASERs and training the officers to generate a position, or at least supplement a position, for a Eugene Police Department officer to be on campus at all times.

If safety is the primary concern for the campus officials, why not employ an actual 24-hour position, or ‘patrol beat’ if you will, for a well-trained officer that is already equipped, morally experienced and well trained?

The benefits wouldn’t just end at safety. This EPD officer could also perform as a communications liaison for the University of Oregon and the Eugene Police Department, in the event that a larger and more significant incident of a non-violent nature could occur. In the event that a larger circumstance would overwhelm the public safety officers, an EPD officer could best facilitate communications with parent and sibling first responders to coordinate a large and well-trained response.

This could be used to reduce the human costs of large structure fires, mass casualties, or even the unfortunate possibility of ‘Virginia Tech’ type school shooting. I feel confident that most students involved in a school shooting situation would best benefit from a well coordinated response, rather than marginally trained officers with stun devices that merely fire 35ft.

I am a large proponent for less-than-lethal alternatives for peace officers seeking to reduce fatalities, but in the case of Oregon’s Department of Public Safety, I would remit the conversation entirely. DPS is not seeking to decrease the capacity for conflict, but instead they are inversely seeking the means based on unjustifiable statistics. The implementation of TASER responses would be overly disproportional to the type of criminal activity, or lack thereof.

(Please Note: the that the term TASER is used in vernacular as common nomenclature. I also go out of my way to not refer to TASER devices as weapons based on the assumption that they are utilized not to inflict harm, but rather to desist detrimental behaviors in order to preserve peace and life, reasonably.)





A SoupKnife Life: The Opening Gambit

27 04 2009

A SoupKnife Life: The Opening Gambit
Wednesday, June 17, 2009

    The Opening Gambit…

First thing’s first. Why Soup Knife? In a world where a rose by any other name couldn’t possibly sound as sweet, I chose to ironically name my web presence after an abstract play on word.

I could tell you that it was homage to John A. Nagl’s counterinsurgency novel, titled “Learning To Eat Soup With A Knife.” I would explain to you that Nagl uses an aphorism defined by T. E. Lawrence, which explains “Making war upon insurgents is messy and slow, like eating soup with a knife.”

I would tell you that it resonated with me on a very personal level. I could tell you that in an age of merging technologies, globalization and a blurring of conventional boundaries has created a world where were are constantly emerged in the floundering tribulations of men. I could tell you that I thought the concepts of insurgencies and counterinsurgencies were the quintessential symbolism of all we do. I could explain that life is all about creating insurgencies in some cases, and about quelling them in others.

I could tell you that it was a matter of principle. You would probably buy into that. I would offer an argument based on my own personal approach of Kantian idealism slathered in Machiavelli satire. Not the disillusion of utilitarian ethics that people commonly interpret to be of cut-throat cynicism, but rather a call to arms for the people in most dire need of republic idealism.

I might confide in you that I stand fast to the Roman ideal of Virtu. I would explain to you the imperative ideology of achieving moral excellence, and finding the fairest moral balance in all aspects of you life. I would explain that I am continually most impressed with the Roman virtues of being the wise patriarch, experienced warrior, and judicious politician, ruled only by self control and obligation to all.

I could further explain my affinity for military history, and my personal fascination with extrapolating life experience from it. I would imply that I hoped to learn from the biggest failings of men, war, and mean it.

I could tell you that I am devout to duty-based ethics and that I derived my title from a form of duty to country that it is a maxim of principle, which I hold dear to myself. Then I could explain that practicing this maxim is tight rope sprint between duty to a larger ideal for a greater good of the aggregate composition of this United States, and the chauvinistic false idealism of nationalism. I suspect you would quickly realize that I spitefully contest unrequited nationalism and blind support.

I could explain to you all these reasons and, perhaps more importantly, this reasoning. Would you care though? You might hate me in disagreement, or listen steadily in divergence. Perhaps we could evaluate the world we live in and aspire to define the human condition, and better understand others and ourselves.

I think we would all be sufficed with the explanation that I simply enjoy humor, and the absurdity of life, and the constant irony that humiliates our hubristic endeavors. We could relish with the false notion that life is unbearably out of our control and that we simply have to take the unfortunate perplexities of life and the majority in stride. We could all recite generic truism and turn up our nuclear family values, or we could try to understand just how complex and multifaceted each situation is.

Perhaps it is because I am afforded the luxury of being in school and subsequently the free time to really analyze the world with a third person perspective and seemingly not having any stake in it. Yet, I have always scrutinized life with a curiosity unquenched by surface appearance. Maybe it is through this disillusion of neutrality that we can systematically further an understanding, in the same way a microscope takes no bias in the analysis of a cell.

Basically, all I really want is to achieve a better understanding and to facilitate a multilogue where I can, along with others, create a forum where I can engage the abstract and real world alike. I seek to establish a haven for the trivial, monumental, absurd and logical. This will be my arena and you may be my coach, if you are wise enough; my teammates, if you are patient enough; or my opponent if you are strong enough.

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