Some WordPress plugin update broke K2!

I just updated 2 plugins to their latest version on 2 of my websites – this one and Enhancing Clarity. When I went back to check them later, I saw, to my horror, that they were no longer centered on the screen.

Despite deactivating both plugins, the problem refused to go away so I had to tweak my themed style sheet with the advice I found here.

And it worked!! Hurrah!!

Google Index Woes

I wrote an article for the American Chronicle (“Where Did Customer Service Go?“) back in June 2008 which is even more topical today in these harsh economic times.

I was thrilled, and not a little surprised, to discover that it was #1 on Google!

But then disaster struck! The American Chronical “back end” truncated my article to less than one sentence so my Google ranking dropped to #4 – which is astonishing in itself and just goes to show how powerful the correct web page title can be. The problem with the back end was quickly corrected but sadly Google hasn’t been back to reindex my article since the 1st week in January.

So any suggestions how I get the Google bot to return?

The Core Process Experience is now online

For several years now I have been a Core Process practitioner. This is one of the most satisfying and profound “jobs” that I have ever had.

Unfortunately it is one of the more “challenging” sells into the corporate world. For some reason, many senior corporates shy away from learning about themselves, particularly at this deep level where they get to understand, literally, why they are on the planet.

So what to do?

I was mucking around online a few weeks ago and discovered by chance that had become available. So this was quickly acquired and a new website created; The Core Process Experience was born.

I was really fortunate that a number of my clients, including Prof. Chris Bones, Dean of Henley Business School and a major fan of Core Process, agreed to “seed” the site with their experiences. I am very grateful to them all.

Anyway now we have to see whether this “corporate” website with comments from high ranking corporate players (amongst many) will have the desired effect. I certainly hope so as I know from personal experience and from talking with clients just how powerful knowing your Core Process is.

Brilliant, but Secret, Extensions for Firefox and Thunderbird

While searching for an extension or utility to manage vCard files and/or attachments in Thunderbird, I stumbled across the Kaosmos website.

This site is a treasure trove of extensions for both Thunderbird and Firefox which are real time savers. I installed 3 straight from the get go including MoreFunctionsForAddressBook which does exactly what I want (i.e. import and export vCards to the address book) and is absolutely brilliant. And the extensions are updated regularly which is a bonus.

I just don’t understand why the author hasn’t put these extensions in the Mozilla Add-Ons repository as there must be thousands of other users who could use a number of them.

Highly recommended!

The Joys (or Otherwise) of Cloud Computing and RSS

Connected, one of the companies I chair, has recently decided to use cloud computing very heavily. The need to collaborate with clients and other suppliers lead them to Basecamp (and a whole bunch of other apps).

This has all sorts of advantages for them, but caused problems for me because I don’t work full time in the company, and the use of Basecamp seems to have really improved productivity – so much so that I was in real danger of unable to keep a general eye on things (one of my briefs being to ask awkward questions). The MD suggested that I look at setting up an RSS feed to monitor things. I must confess that I’ve never used RSS before to monitor news etc. as to me it has always seemed like extra noise – and noise is something I can do without!

Which leads me to Flock, the browser based on Firefox designed for heavy users of social media. I can’t (so far) use this on my Linux desktop PC but it works on my Linux laptop, both running Gentoo Linux which is seriously weird. My initial view of flock is that it is not as good as the WizzRSS plugin for Firefox I installed on my desktop but I’ll persevere to see which I like better over the next few weeks.

But the use RSS for this is a brilliant idea/solution. Maybe I should use it more …

New Wheels …

Well I took delivery of my new car a few days ago. Following on from my previous post, I decided to have some fun and ordered a silver Peugeot 207cc which I’m really enjoying, particularly as it came in well under the budget I’d set myself. It’s wonderful to be driving an open top car again after so many years, and having a metal roof that disappears into the boot/trunk after 15 seconds is all the excuse I need to get the top down!

Unlike my previous Smart ForFour, this car is a) petrol (doing less than 10,000 miles a year, I can’t justify the diesel) and b) on contract hire rather than a contract purchase (I have to give the car back at the end of the contract). I miss that pulling power of the diesel, but I’m averaging around 40mpg with mixed motorway/town driving so I can’t complain. And I’ve found the Pug to be more comfortable on long journeys than the Smart with was, which is a plus.

So why did I choose the Pug, other than the price? In all honesty, because the boot/trunk is huge. I can get a full set of golf clubs in and a trolley – hopefully my electric one will fit, but if not, I can use my old “pull me” one. On my local course, the “pull me” is fine as it not too hilly.

One unexpected bonus was that the car came with the iPod loom wired into the radio saving me both time and money getting this done – it was an option on the model I chose.

And today I received, and fitted, an active tilt and swivel phone holder from Brodit for my XDA iis thanks to DSL Developments, Brodit’s UK distributor.

So I’m a happy camper with my new wheels!

The joys of PCH

My Smart ForFour Passion diesel returns to Mercedes Benz at the end of next month as my PCH (personal contract hire) agreement comes to an end. I can’t believe that 2 years have passed so quickly.

This has been my first experience of driving a car that I haven’t owned outright – and in this case, not at all. It has been a pretty good experience all round; so much so that I now have to consider what to replace it with.

Choices, choices. As I only do around 8,500 miles a year made up of 1 long trip each month and a few short drives to the train station and back, do I go for the dirt cheap run-around option and pay about £125 per month, or have some fun with a small convertible at around £100 per month more?

Ah the joys of PCH!

Google as a saviour

The CEO of a company I chair has created a very interesting blog based around irrevent thinking.

Unfortunately it was hosted temporarily on my now defunct hosting platform.

I thought he had a backup of the database. He thought I did. Result? Panic all round!

But Google Cache saved the day. We lost one comment, but as I knew the commentator personally, a quick email telling them what had happened resulted in them recreating it.

End result? Blushes all round (and a proper daily backup routine) but ultimately a huge sigh of relief!

Google is getting an increasingly bad press as people worry about how much power it wields and how much personal data it collects, but in this case it really did prove to be a saviour. Respect.