Get Your Own Goatse Email Address

If don’t know what Goatse.cx consider yourself lucky and don’t look it up… But you can now be part of the meme and sign up for your very own @Goatse.cx email address! Unless it’s an elaborate hoax/troll and everyone who has signed up for an address gets a Goatse image sent to them…

Via Laughing Squid

Clever Email Marketing From Pizza Express Using HTML

If you use a sensible email client you will probably have noticed that most of your emails will not initially load when images, this is great for the user, it speeds up the process of downloading all your mail and means you can skim through your mail without having to wait ages for images you don’t care about to load.

This isn’t however very good for email marketers who use images to convey information to you. I’m sure you are used to receiving a lot of emails that make no sense because they don’t have any images in them. It seems that Pizza Express (A UK Pizza Restaurant Chain) have cottoned on to the fact that not everyone downloads all the images from their correspondence emails, so they have taken to formatting the emails quite cleverly, this is what an email I received today looks like without the images having loaded:

You can clearly see that it’s someone in a stripy costume holding up their hand to their hair (or maybe a pizza?) Below that there are details of the offer and how to get a voucher code in plain text.

Once you load images this is what the email looks like:

It’s a blonde woman in a stripy swimsuit holding up her hair. Looking at the image it’s obvious that the non image version is based on  this, the graphics in the non table version maybe reminiscent of an Atari 2600 game but they convey the same details as the image version, and they make you stop and think, I wonder what that is supposed to be maybe I’ll download the images.

So I guess their cunning ruse worked. I downloaded their images, I’ve also subjected you to their cunning advertising…

1,001 Arabian Blogs

This is my 1,001st blog post, I thought I’d do a quick retrospective. I’m not sure why I started blogging, I remember back in 1998 a friend told me that they had set up a blog for themselves and I thought to myself “what the hell was the point in that”, they were posting a diary online, probably on live journal or something like that.

A few years later I bought ohmz.co.uk among others (I’ve also been the proud owner of watermelons.co.uk…), but I never used that because I didn’t know what the hell I wanted to do, so that domain expired. At some point I bought ohmz.net, and I installed php-blog, a really simple bit of software that allowed me to post crap to my webspace. Back then I was working as a stage technician and I had dreams of being a music blogger. I blogged about my experience backstage with whatever bands I was working with, usually at King Tuts Wah Wah Hut, it was really poorly written and really boring I think 3 people read it in total. I stopped blogging there after a while and forgot about it, until I got an email from my web host saying that my blog had been closed down because it had been identified as a spam center. Apparently there was a flaw in the blogging software I used that allowed people, or bots, to email people from my blog and they were spamming the bejesus out of the internet.

I un-installed the blog software I was using and installed Drupal, played around with it for a while, didn’t like it and settled on WordPress.

My blog lay dormant for some time, I’d post the odd bit of crap every now and then, but I wasn’t really that interested. I had a minor spike when I posted a picture of my birthday cake a few years ago:

But then my blog went dormant again for almost a year…

Recently I started using my blog as place to post random cool stuff I found on the internet, art, gadgets whatever, I wasn’t expecting anyone to read it, it was just so I could remember that the stuff existed. One particular post involved an image of someone with make-up that made them look like a drawing by Roy Lichtenstien:

It didn’t get much attention at the time but a year later I saw a huge spike in my visits:


I had a whopping 40 views in one day to that post, so I wrote a follow up post with some more examples, those two posts remain some of my most popular posts… I was getting up to 100 views a day due to having posted some pop art make-up, and I was happy…

Then something strange happened… I’m not entirely sure what the catalyst was but in the past two months my views have sky rocketed:

I went from a little over 300 views in Oct 2010 to over 33,000 in February of 2012, and there is still time left today for me to get more. I appreciate that the spike in October was due to people looking for ideas for Halloween costumes, I’d expected a spike there, but then the hits continued to ramp up, I got a big boost by posting some geeky Valentines day cards but people are actually looking at the home page rather than just hitting individual blog posts. I think I may be experiencing my 5 minutes of fame…

I actually find it reall amusing that having published my 1,000th blog post yesterday and my views yesterday were 1,337, a number which I think is dear to geeks around the world:

So what have I been blogging about aside from posting random links to stuff I’ve found online? My amatuer photography, my rubbish writing and various story ideas including my NaNoWriMo efforts (Check “writing” link at the top of this page if you want to have a look), Some tribal art I put together a while ago:

A tribal dragonfly

I’ve taken a stab at writing my own web comic creatively titled Blip and Blop:

I’ve also written various film reviews and rants. I think in the future I’m going to try and post more original content to balance out the stuff I’ve posted that just links to other peoples work. I’m not going to stop posting links to other stuff I’ve found, just supplement it with origianal content that you can only find here, that is until someone else reblogs it elsewhere (I’m under no illusion that will ever happen…).

Anyway I just wanted to say thanks for reading my blog, I hope you continue to enjoy it.

Omar

P.S. In case you were wondering about the title, I am aware that none of my blog posts have been in Arabic but I am an Arab (or at least half Arab) and I felt the title worked so I went with it.

P.P.S. If there is anything that I’ve blogged about in the past that you have found particularly interesting or you just want to comment on the style of the blog/give constructive advice or abuse feel free to mention it in the comments. I may get a lot of views but not many people comment on my blog, and it’s cold and lonely in cyberspace…