Sunday Computer Fair...

It was a nice day again today, so went for a drive. I headed into London, but on the way i saw signs for a computer fair!

I attempted to follow the signs but to no avail, as they all seemed to be pointing in different directions. Frustrated i pulled over and resorted to googling the name of the computer fair on my phone. I found the address and set the sat-nav, and i was away...

The GPS got me there in just a few mins, I parked up, entered the building, paid my £2.50 and i was ready to buy some serious computer bargains...

How very dissapointed i was. The fair comprised of two seperate rooms setup with about 10 vendors stands in total. All vendors seemed to be selling exactly the same things, cheap laptops, high performance graphics cards, and stupid neon flashy bits to decorate your computer case with.

Where was all the good stuff?? The last time i went to a computer fair must have been a year or so ago, but im sure they were selling much more interesting stuff, i mean where were all the cool gadgets?? and who on earth wants to stick neon flashy lights in their desktop computer anyway??

I think i'll be giving computer fairs a miss for another year....

Domain Flipping - my first attempt

Tonight i bought my first domain name with the sole intention of "flipping it" for profit.
Ive bought and own many domains, but ive never bought a domain name specifically for flipping.

In case you dont know, "Domain Flipping" is the practice of buying a domain name, with the sole intention of selling it at a profit. Domains are very cheap to buy, only a few pounds each, however the correct domain name can be worth a fortune!

My idea for this domain name came from the front page of a local free news paper. On this weeks edition there is a large advert on the front page (not a cheap advert!) for a company close to me.
In fact there are two very similar companies advertising, both with large expensive adverts, so i know the market is competitive, knows the value of advertising, and also has money to spend on large adverts. One of the companies advertising includes a website, but their email address on the advert is a googlemail address (i hate that!) Their own website doesnt rank in google, even if you type the name into the search box!! (thats bad!)
Based on my target customers and the location, i selected my domain name. I then used Market Samurai to get an idea of the qty of searches performed. I found a few hundred searches for the keywords per day so i know its a popular market. I also found the market value for monetizing the domain before its sold with PPC adverts (will easily cover its costs)
Next stage is to build the landing page. i'm going to fill the page with keyword rich text and PPC adverts. there are enough relevant adverts showing up to show the business owners their competition, and my theory is that the companies i contact will all hopefully click the adverts, thus generating cash to cover the purchase price of the domains. Quick look in the yellow pages and there are loads of companies in the same line of business who would all benefit from my chosen domain name. All of this confirmed, i pulled out the credit card and bought the domains.. My challenge - to see if i can flip them before the credit card statement arrives :)

Affiliate Windows ASP.NET API.

I've got my AffiliateWindow API working. it took a bit of effort as the guys over at Affiliate Window all seem to be die-hard PHP developers and know nothing about ASP.NET and C#.

One of the problems i had to overcome was that MS-Visual Studio didnt like the SOAP based webservice offered by Affiliate Window. Once i cracked that problem i was able to use a tweaked version of the wsdl file to generate a C# class library.

However, the resulting library isn't very intuitive, so ive wrapped the whole thing up in my own, more object orientated class library.

The result is that i have a nice easy to use Affiliate Window API written in C# and designed for use in ASP.NET websites.

Big question now is what to do with the API?? build some sites? create a review site? who knows... was actually thinking of releasing a version con CodePlex as open source to help other people who are struggling with Affiliate Window and C#... if i get any feedback, then that might be an option, in the mean time, i guess i better start using it myself and build some "money making sites" :)

If you want to find out more about Affiliate Window, take a look at thier site - easy way to make a bit of affiliate cash!



Ok, so i got myself banned from the forum earlier today for starting a poll about GetResponse...
Ive not been on the WarriorForum for long, but its funny how im looking forward to my ban being lifted tomorrow... some really good stuff on that forum, well worth a read..
Anyway, in the meantime, since ive not been able to waste my day on the forum, ive been creating some code. Been meaning to write a C# library for interfacing with AffiliateWindow's webservice for a while. Finally got round to doing it today, and after a couple of hours slaving at a hot keyboard, i finally got something that works pretty well.

Ive built in some nice features like caching to try and reduce the number of calls i make to the webservice, this should reduce the load on their servers as well as speeding up the response time of my site(s).

I'm planning to build a few sites using the same core engine. if it works, then i have some more great ideas that i can use the library for...

Watch this space!!! :)

So much for Freedom of speech!!

LOL, I just got banned from the Warrior forum for starting a poll about GetResponse Autoresponder.

Following on from their disastrous upgrade which has not only dropped loads of features but also resulted in a price increase, i asked the simple question to the good people of the Warrior Forum:

"will you be staying with GetResponse"

The possible answers where
  1. Yes, i'll be staying with GetResponse,
  2. No, i'll be moving to Aweber
  3. No, i'll be moving to another auto responder company
  4. Not decided yet.
Now considering the amount of pain that the GetResponse 'upgrade' has caused people, i think that's a totally reasonable question to ask dont you?

I mean, come on, banned from the forum for that?? surely a deleted poll and a private message would have been sufficient right? - nope, i get a ban...

Do you get the impression that people moderating the forum are very much "in bed" with the people from GetResponse?? i certainly do.

If that's the case then its simply another reason for me to move away from using GetResponse as my chosen autoresponder.

Any company who deliberately suppress freedom of speach is, in my opinion, not worth getting involved with. Dictatorship, Communism, all words that spring to mind when i see things like this happening in public forums setup specifically for conversation like these...

Whats the matter GetResponse? are you worried that someone like Aweber (who havent just alienated all of their clients with an aborted upgrade) might take some of your market share??

Or maybe, the prospect of another company coming along and knockin you off the top spot worries you so much that you're prepared to take measures like this to defend your market position?

Well let me give you one great bit of advice:


I would be ashamed if i'd released a product with as many problems as the latest version of GetRespone - you only need to read the posts from other unhappy members of the forum to realise that im very much not alone with my opinion.

"All's fair in love and war", and any company who expect not to lose customers after delivering such a messed up product upgrade is deluding themselves, no matter how much you try to silence your critics, if you still have a buggy product, how can you expect not to lose customers??

Door handle broke :(

Went to get out the car, and "Crack"!! a loud noice came from the drivers side interior door handle.
Not really sure what happened, but now the door handle is all floppy and the only way to open the door is from the outside.. very embarrasing!

So what can i do? if i take the car to BMW, i know they're going to charge a small fortune to fix it - dfont fancy that, so been searching the web for anyone else with the same problem.
So, has anyone else got a floppy door handle on their BMW E46 convertible? if you have and you know how to fix it, i'd be very greatful!!

Summer is here!! ideal convertible weather.. or is it?

This hot weather is great isnt it!? thermometer on the car has been showing 27degrees+ on a regular basis, ideal weather for getting the roof off the old BMW..

Ive had the convertible BMW now for over 3 years. E46 330cd M-Sport, Black Saphire with black leather. Its my first convertible, and also my first BWM. Before owning a a convertible i always used to look at other convertible drivers and wonder why they didnt have thier roof off on hot sunny days... now i know why!

The only draw back about driving a convertible seems to be when you get stuck in traffic jams. With the sun blazing down, the air con just isnt strong enough to keep me cool. I end up having to decide weather to continue to "look cool" with the roof down, or actully stay cool by putting the roof back up!