Showing posts with label IT. Show all posts
Showing posts with label IT. Show all posts

Tuesday 5 June 2012

Instagram - Sidebar plugin for your blog

If you are an iPhone or an Android phone user, you probably already know Instagram. If not, you really should get to know it now.
For quite some time this app was reserved for iPhone users only but when it also became available for Android it really got popular. Since lately it also has all the cool features on both platforms. Look for it on Google Play - it is free.

Below is a simple example of a photo with one of many available filters applied in Instagram. It is really easy to get great results with this tool.

It is one of my favorite mobile apps. Since it produces really great photos I thought of implementing it into Travel Photo Blogging for a while now. So when I found this SnapWidget that does just that, I simply had to fit it somewhere inside my sidebar.

It is easy to customize and I think it looks great. You can check it out in the bottom part of the right column of this blog under the title Our Instagram Feed.

You can also check out our Instagram feed on this link or search for us under the username travel_pb.


Monday 23 January 2012

Google celebrates Plečnik's 140th birthday

As you probably know, Google occasionally changes the logo on their webpage ( These logos celebrating various important events are also known as Google Doodles. Recently there was an interesting one named "Blacked out logo" - Google's way of protesting against SOPA.

Global issues are usually addressed on their main site but logos of local (national) Google pages also change from time to time. Today for the first time a Slovenian Doodle was published. It celebrates the 140th birthday of Jože Plečnik an architect famous for completing many architectural projects in Vienna, Prague and Ljubljana (the place of his birth).

Today's Google Doodle represents his work in the city center of Ljubljana - The Triple Bridge. If you have seen it, you know what I am talking about. If you haven't seen it yet, I suggest you do it before tourists flood this charming city completely.

To see the doodle on Google site you will probably have to open the page instead of your local version (or be physically located in Slovenia).
As you have probably guessed, the .si stands for Slovenia.


Thursday 4 August 2011

Google+ invites available

I have recently tried out a new communication channel provided by Google. It also provides support for mobile devices, allowing you to stay in touch with your social circles at all times. It is quite a useful tool for travellers like me, being on the road a lot.
You have probably heard at least something about it - everybody is talking about this new social network. Google+ is Google's latest attempt to face-off Facebook. Company's other recent tries in this field have been only partially successful.
gTalk was widely accepted as a part of Gmail, but has never grown into a serious competition for Skype.
Google Buzz (and Google Wave before it) was also announced as a revolutionary communication platform, but has never really picked up.

With Google+ Google is trying to finally make a breakthrough in the field of social networks. It is still too early to predict their success but the introduction phase of the product was done brilliantly. In just under 3 weeks Google+ adopted over 10 million users - at the moment there are already more then 20 million. That definitely is something worth bragging about, but it is still not all that much compared to Facebook's 750 million current users.

However stunning this might be, it is still just the first battle won in a long war against Facebook.
Will this prove to be the Facebook killer Google is looking for? I think it is still early in the game to say something like that... in my opinion Facebook is not leaving anytime soon.

If you haven't tried it out yet, all this hype should be a reason for at least some curiosity. If you are looking for an invite for Google+ it is your lucky day!

Invites are reserved for my readers only. If you haven't done it already, you should join other followers of Travel Photo Blogging through Google Friend Connect (slide to the bottom of page) or follow us using your favourite social network (top right).
After you have done that, you simply leave a comment to this post and I will send you an invite as soon as possible.

A free bonus after receiving an invite from me is that you can also add me to one of your social circles and we can test this thing together.


Thursday 31 March 2011

New Blogger dynamic templates look best on blogs filled with photos

As some of you might have noticed already, Google Blogger has introduced a set of new, dynamic templates for all blogs hosted on Blogger platform that have feeds fully enabled.
It might not be all that obvious, but yes - Blogger is also my blogging platform.

This new feature is obviously meant to be used with blogs that contain lots of photos.
I must admit it looks great on mine!

If you would like to try it out yourself, simply add “/view” to the end of the blog URL, e.g.:

There are a few different templates available and you can switch among them by clicking on the blue drop-down list in the top right corner of your screen.
You can also access all these different layouts directly through the blog URL - for example:

This new feature really looks great as it is. However I just can't help wondering if Google has some plans for upgrading it later on. Let us just wait and see.


Tuesday 13 July 2010

Football and Web Traffic go together well

As I predicted in my previous post the last football match Slovenia played in South Africa had a similar effect on web traffic as the previous two. Almost every web page and blog publishing Slovenia related content experienced a substantial increase of traffic in recent days.

On the graph screenshot from Google Trends you can see three peaks representing number of Google searches people did last month.
The first peak is on the day of the match between Slovenia and Algeria, the second Slovenia vs. USA and the third Slovenia vs. England.

Unfortunately Slovenian national team didn't make it to the next round and this meant the end of increased web exposure for Slovenia. I am pretty sure the upcoming 2010 FIBA Basketball World Championship in Turkey will hardly have a similar effect.

A couple of days ago the World Cup came to an end and it is a vuvuzela free time again. Congratulations Spain!


Wednesday 23 June 2010

The influence of Soccer WC 2010 on Slovenia

If a relatively young country has an ambition of becoming a popular tourist destination, it usually has to work hard to achieve such a goal. It is important to try to promote the country through as many different channels as possible.

Slovenia definitely falls into that category (Slovenia has been an independent country since its separation from Yugoslavia in 1991). Slovenian Tourist Board is trying hard to raise the level of worldwide awareness but that is not enough.
In my opinion, sports can also help at least a little bit. In some cases much more then just a little bit.
Recent qualification of Slovenian national soccer team for the FIFA World Cup 2010 in South Africa is an excellent example of just that. Many people started wondering where this soccer team, competing with English and US teams is coming from. Slovenia? Where the heck is Slovenia?
You might think I am exaggerating. How can a couple of soccer matches be compared to years of work of a bunch of politicians, diplomats and tourist promoters?

Well it actually can be... and I've got proof of that. It is called Google trends.

For those of you who haven't heard of this before, "with Google Trends you can compare the world’s interest in your favourite topics", as Google puts it. In other words, with this tool you can compare what people were searching for through Google.
For instance if you enter "where is slovenia, slovenia map" you get the below graph.

You can notice a strange change of pattern at the far right-hand side of the graph. If you take a closer look at that period of time - for instance the last month of data, you can see something similar to the screen-shot bellow.

I guess some of you already know where this is heading... Those two peaks in the graph mean that on the 13th and 18th of June 2010 there were an unusually high number of people entering those two queries into Google search engine.
If you take a look at the last screenshot you can see the final hint. It says: "Slovenia, US draw 2-2". In this case I have added "slovenia" to previous two search strings and got an even more explicit result.

Yes, it was football (or soccer as Americans tend to call it). Slovenia was playing with Algeria on 13th of June and USA on 18th of June. Interesting isn't it?

Let me end this with a prediction. Since today (23th of June) the Slovenian national team is playing with the English, I expect a similar rise to be seen on the graph. I don't dare to even speculate what would happen if we make it to the Round of 16 or even to the Quarter-finals. Let us just wait and see.



Sunday 6 December 2009

Free Google Wave invitations

Have you heard of Google Wave yet?
I guess most of you answered with a definite YES. For you two ignorant goat herdsmen, who haven't heard of it yet due to a busy goat herding season or something, it is time to get out of your cave and take a look at Wave's interesting features directly from members of the Google team.

Even if it might seem this thing has nothing to do with blogging and even less with photography, that is not the case.
Google Wave is a powerful communication platform which among other features also allows you to automatically publish your communications (interactions or "waves" as they are called) on your blog. You can also easily share your photos with your friends.
These are just a couple of the features that Google Wave offers. If you want to know more, simply go to and check it out for yourself.

Let me finally get to the point... Recently I have been invited to use Google Wave and awarded a few invitations myself. I have 5 invitations left and since Santa Claus spirit is in the air I decided to give them away to my readers.

If you are interested simply leave your request with an email address in a comment to this post.


Friday 20 March 2009

A brand new look for Travel Photo Blogging

I thought it was time for a change. Those of you who visit me more often might have noticed it already... the Travel Photo Blogging 2.0 look.

First time visitors can see the old template on the screenshot bellow.

What do you think? Is this a good change or should I have kept the old one?
I would love some feedback on what you think about it.

I spent quite some time looking for a suitable candidate among many templates on the Web. I tried a few, but none of them was as good as this one.
I had a few requirements, that I think this new template meets perfectly:

  • it had to be a Blogger compatible template

  • it had to be a two column template

  • main column had to be wider compared to the old one (larger photos look better)

  • it had to be a free template

  • it should support a banner at the very top

  • the more customizable it would be, the better

  • and last, but definitely not least, it had to look nice.

I found exactly what I needed in one of many templates at Our Blogger Templates.
They offer a wide range of nicely designed free templates and if you are looking for a new one, it's worth to take a look.
There you can also find some instructions and a few tips on how to do it properly.

I noticed something strange though... since I changed to the new template, my blog seems to be getting substantially fewer hits then before - especially from Google. That's only about 10 percent of the average from a few days ago (judging from the Google Analytics report)!

Does anybody know why this happens? Is this just a temporary thing or what? Is there something I can do about it?


Tuesday 29 April 2008

WikiTravel - A Travel GuideBook of Tomorrow?

When I was surfing for information about Cinque Terre, I stumbled upon an interesting site. It is a Wiki kind of site and depends solely on user input. is a very useful site for all of you travelers, surfing for up to date info about your next travel destination.
It was inspired by Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, and by the needs of travellers for timely information that long book-publishing cycles can't seem to meet.

Feel free to contribute your bit. I have already added a little piece of information to its vast and fast growing database. At the moment they have more then 18.000 destination guides and other articles written and edited by Wikitravellers.

I believe there is a bright future ahead of this project. In a couple of years we can expect various portable devices that enable Web surfing and navigation will become quite widespread. At the same time we can also see all kinds of wireless networks spreading all around us.
Put those things together and you don't have to be a visionary to see which way this is going...

I predict that in about five years time electronic PDA devices will replace classical guidebooks for travelers in the better developed parts of the world. The only limitation I can see is the non-existence of wireless networks in some parts of the world. For those countries a paper travel guidebook will still be the only option for quite some time.


Monday 11 June 2007

AGLOCO Viewbar finally ready for download

I have had an Agloco link on my blog for quite some time (the hot babe in the right column), but haven't published a post about it. The time seems just right to do it now.

After much anticipation Agloco finally released their Viewbar a few days ago (until now this was a missing link between signing up and starting to earn some surfing money). If you have already registered for an Agloco account, you can login and download it now. If you don’t have an Agloco account or have misplaced your login info, you can sign up here. If you don't know what I’m talking about and who or what this Aglogo thing is, read some info on the subject.
In a few words: Agloco is a service that intends to help you earn money from your regular web surfing.

These last days their site was too busy to get through — they warned this might happen. If you can’t get through to their site, just try again later (I succeeded on my third try two days ago).

I installed the Viewbar under Windows 2000, and so far it seems to be running just fine. I’m pleased with how thin it is. It stays at the bottom of the screen, just above the Windows Taskbar. I think after a few minutes of use you won't even notice it.

So far it seems to works fine with both Internet Explorer and Firefox (I haven't tried it with any other web browser).

I can't really say I have tested the Agloco Viewbar in detail, and since no one has earned anything from this it so far (it is a fresh thing really), I’m not endorsing this service. But I think it's interesting for several reasons: A) It’s free, B) it’s interesting enough to deserve your attention and C) it's zero risk trying it out for a while to see if it works.

If you think Agloco is totally not worth your attention, you may be right. But in the end, who cares if it doesn't work out? On the other hand, if it does moderately well, those who got in early will be glad they invested the negligible amount of time to sign up, download and install the Viewbar, and pass on the word to others. I won't be sorry for not trying – not this time.

To me this was an easy decision. Due to the negligible risk, one can afford to place a lot of these bets and lose most of them. If I needed to pay any money to sign-up though, I wouldn’t even think about it twice.

Consider giving Agloco a closer look if you haven’t already done so.


Friday 4 May 2007

Fishing photo collage

I just got back from a fishing trip. Weather was nice, fish were biting like crazy and as expected we had a wonderful time.

I am posting a photo collage made by Google Picasa. It will have to do for now.

I'll write a proper post or two on the subject in the following days.


Thursday 5 April 2007

An example of the worst possible timing

In my previous post I tried to promote BE (BlogExplosion) - it's a great way to boost your blog traffic and have fun in the process.

However - I chose to do that in a worst moment possible. As my blog post was published, at BE they have decided to move to new servers (the very same day!). Of course this meant their homepage was inaccessible for the day and nobody interested could check the BE page.

I am trying to console myself that the reason I haven't given away any credits yet was unavailability of BE webpage.

However, the be webpage is up again and my offer still stands - 50 credits for the first three of you signing up.
You can read more on the subject in this post or go to BE homepage by clicking on the banner below.


Monday 2 April 2007

Explode your blog traffic - join BlogExplosion

Have you heard of BlogExplosion yet?

I believe most of you have. It is one of those blog traffic generating tools.
But it's more than just that. Even if you are using it I am pretty sure, you haven't tried all of what it has to offer (I am also not exploiting all of the traffic generating tools yet). Keep reading this post and you might even get a new idea or two!

Its primary idea is surfing other blogs to earn credits. You can spend those credits for bringing traffic to your blog (1 credit = 1 visit to your blog).

The fact is that BE (BlogExplosion) has much more to offer besides just that:

  • You can battle other member's blogs. And by doing that you can see how good your blog really is (and generate traffic in the process). Do you dare?

  • You can play various games (Sudoku, Scratch Cards, Arcade games etc). Most of them give you a chance to earn credits.

  • There is a vast community of active bloggers. They can help you solve your problems (blog related and others), review your blog and advise you on possible improvements. You can earn credits for helping others in the same way.

  • Another way of drawing traffic to your blog is through banner advertising. Once they are at your blog, you just have to persuade them that it's worth coming back. How hard can that be?

  • You can also listen to a really good BE Radio and earn credits just by doing that. If you use your computer most of the day like I am, you can earn a hundred credits as a daily average.

These are just some of the things BE has to offer. There is much more to explore.

Some sources say that the quality of traffic generated by sources similar to BlogExplosion is really low, but that is not entirely true.
From my own experience I can tell you that unfortunately most of the traffic generated this way doesn't come from future regular readers.
But after a couple of days of not using BlogExplosion, I have noticed, that quite a few BE members are still visiting my blog. Of course a lot depends on the quality of the blog itself. You have a blog worth visiting, right?

Why would you believe me? You shouldn't. You should try it out yourself!
You have nothing to loose. But you can win a lot (of traffic) and have loads of fun in the process. :)

To help you make the right decision, I will transfer 50 credits to the BlogExplosion accounts of the first three of you who decide to join by clicking on the add below.
You have to send me an email so that I can make the transfer. Please include the part of confirmation mail from BE where your username and the date of joining can be seen. Send the email to msinkovec* (replace * with @).


Tuesday 27 February 2007

Web statistics

This is turning out to be another IT related post, but don't go running away just because of that. You might learn something useful.

Like the title suggests I will be writing about web statistics and analytical tools. The free ones that is.

I have been using different kinds of web counters for ages.

Not much time has past since we were all happy with a simple number counter on the entering page of our webpage. Then along came advanced web statistic tools, which unfortunately were available only for a certain monthly fee. One of the most promising ones was Urchin Web Analytics Reporting Service.

On a beautiful sunny day Google has decided to buy them and offer the fully functional web analytics tool to the public for free. Google decided to name this product Google Analytics. Follow the link if you want to find out more about it.

In one of the previous posts I have already posted a screenshot of one of the available statistics - Web browsers used by visitors of this blog.

Google Analytics is also linked to Google AdWords service – together they make a truly powerful tool. Go check it out, it will help you bring targeted traffic to your site.
You can find the link to AdWords at the bottom of the right frame.


Friday 23 February 2007

Surfing the web

As a person working in the IT field, I just can't make it without an IT based post once in a while. This time I am going to write about most often used applications today. I think it's safe to say those are Web browsing applications.

I have been using such applications for quite a while and have tried many of them in the process. My first contact with internet was with a help of Netscape. I liked it, but over the years it has fallen behind in its ability to properly display more complicated web pages. Microsoft Internet Explorer took advantage of that and soon became the most popular web browser by far.
It took other players some years to recover from that. Opera and Mozilla Firefox were amongst the most successful ones. For a limited period of time compared to Firefox and IE, Opera has had more advanced features. Soon Firefox took off on the wings of its many plugins and almost 100% accurate display of web pages.

The advantage of Firefox is in its simplicity and consequential speed. Almost every functionality you can think of, can be included additionally in the form of an add-on.
Recently Microsoft has released a new version of IE, which has simply copied many of the Firefox's proven functionalities. As a response to that Firefox 2.0 has been released. If you ask me, currently it's the best web browsing tool out there.
It costs you absolutely nothing to try it out, but could gain a lot. It's faster then the competition, safer from spyware than IE, comes with a Google toolbar and thousands of various add-ons, which help you to make it your own.
You can try it by clicking on the Firefox link in the right frame.

Below you can see a screenshot of most used web browsers by visitors of this photo blog. The screenshot was taken in Google Analytics.

Global statistics at show that in July 2006 83.05% of all web surfers were still using Microsoft IE. Mozilla Firefox was used by only 12.93%, but its share is growing every day. Other followers are Apple Safari, Opera and Netscape with 2 percent and less.

You can find the link to downloading the latest version of Mozzila Firefox in the right frame. Be one of the smart ones and use Firefox 2.0 to surf the web!

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