Ask Me A Question Via Qwizzy

Qwizzy.com LogoWhile browsing Steven Hodsons blog, I noticed an interesting widget on his site that displayed questions he had been asked, followed up with his answers. I thought this was a novel idea and a way for me to communicate directly with my readers.

Qwizzy.com was created by Adam Ostrow, Contributing editor for Mashable.com and Peter Franza, a distinguished computer engineer. Both founders currently reside in Virginia.

Qwizzys founding principle, is that you should question everything. In effect, thats exactly what the service allows you to do. After registering an account, you’ll be able to ask any other member a question. Those members then have an oppurtunity to answer your question and the entire experience gives you the sense of a one-on-one personal communication. An excellent way of sharing knowledge without needing to use email.

After joining the service, I took the opportunity to ask Adam, “What is it like writing and working for Mashable.com?” It didn’t take him long to respond.

Adam Ostrow: answered: “It’s pretty cool. I actually studied journalism in college so it’s nice to be able to write and get paid for it. The one thing that is hard for me is coming up with topic ideas, and occasionally I’ll get assigned one that isn’t so fun for me.”

Qwizzy provides seperate RSS feeds for Questions and Answers. I wouldn’t mind seeing an RSS feed which combines the two. If you have a question that you’ve been wanting to ask me, join Qwizzy and be sure to add me as a fan http://www.qwizzy.com/jeffro2pt0 All questions and answers will be displayed on the Qwizzy flash based widget, which is now displayed on the left sidebar on this blog.

Qwizzy RSS Feeds

Who’s Amung.us At It Again

Whos.Amung.US Logo

I was wondering why my whos amung us widget was screwing up, and now I know why. Whos Amung Us has rolled out some updates to their web based widget which shows you how many users are concurrently browsing your site, in real-time. The most notable changes are within the WhosAmungUs website itself. Now, all widgets that are produced by the team are accessible on one page.

New Widget Called Maps.Amung.Us

One of the biggest changes is a brand new widget called MAPS or Maps.amung.us This widget shows you who has visited your site based on the location of their IP address. Think Frappr in real-time. Be sure to check out http://whos.amung.us/ to grab your widgets and to check out their new widget, visit http://maps.amung.us/

Who’s Amung.us At It Again

Whos.Amung.US Logo

I was wondering why my whos amung us widget was screwing up, and now I know why. Whos Amung Us has rolled out some updates to their web based widget which shows you how many users are concurrently browsing your site, in real-time. The most notable changes are within the WhosAmungUs website itself. Now, all widgets that are produced by the team are accessible on one page.

New Widget Called Maps.Amung.Us

One of the biggest changes is a brand new widget called MAPS or Maps.amung.us This widget shows you who has visited your site based on the location of their IP address. Think Frappr in real-time. Be sure to check out http://whos.amung.us/ to grab your widgets and to check out their new widget, visit http://maps.amung.us/

Easy To Use Contact Forms Via Kontactr

http://www.kontactr.comOne thing that every website should have is a contact form. Leaving yourself open to communication is one of the best things you can do when running a website. WordPress and other solutions don’t provide a contact form out of the box , which is why Kontactr comes in real handy.

Synopses:

Kontactr is a free service that does one thing, and does it well, and that is, providing users an easy to use contact form that can be placed anywhere on your site simply by copying and then pasting the code. Using Kontactr only consists of three steps with the third step being optional.

Create an Account
You will have your own contact form once you have created your account.

Post the Link
Start giving your contact form’s link to people instead of you email address.

More Tools
Login to your account for buttons, widgets and more…

Kontactr’s forms contain the following features:

  • CAPTCHA Protection
  • Customizable code for Embedding the form
  • Codes for Buttons and Links to your form

The Review:

After you login to your account with Kontactr, you’ll be taken to your profile which contains a link to your Kontactr form page. For example, here is a link to my contact page http://kontactr.com/user/Jeffro2pt0 You have two choices. You can either point users to your contact form on the Kontactr site, or you can embed the form onto your own site.

There are a few ways in which you can embed the Kontactr service into your site. The first way is by embedding a widget which contains the appropriate code for your form. Using this method allows you the most control over the look and feel of your contact form. Another way to implement Kontactr is by using the Ajax powered widget. The embed code for the Ajax widget is only 3 lines and it provides the fancy web 2.0 effects that we have come to love. *The only downside to using the Ajax powered widget is that it doesn’t allow you to control any of the text or layout of the form.

One Of The Ways To Embed Kontactr

If you don’t feel like embedding code into your site’s template, you have a choice of using three different links which will point to your contact form. Two of the links are graphical buttons while the last one is a textual link.

Ways To Link To Your Kontactr Form

When you receive an email from Kontactr, the subject line will read Kontactr: (Subject that the user put in) This is how you can differentiate between normal emails and emails sent through the Kontactr service. One of the best features of Kontactr is the ability to use the same form link on multiple sites. If you decide to use the form on multiple sites, you’ll be glad to know that the Referrer url will be added to the footer of each email. This allows you to figure out which site and which form was used.

Referral URL Added To The Email Footer

I can’t tell you how effective their CAPTCHA technique is since I have only used the service for a few days but I have yet to receive any spam through my own contact form. Those who are blind will not be able to use this service as it doesn’t provide an audio version of the CAPTCHA images. On a side note, the CAPTCHA images are CASE-SENSITIVE so be sure to remember than when your using one of these forms.

Final Thoughts

All in all, I have to say that using Kontactr is a piece of cake. I don’t know how much simpler they could of made the service without actually doing everything for you. I am currently using Kontactr for my contact form and if you want to see a live example, check out https://jeffc.me/contact-me/ Go ahead and send a message to me if you’d like, perhaps commenting on this article or the service itself. If your in need of a contact form, yet you don’t want to upload specific plugins or files to generate one, this is the service you need to use!

Web 2.0 Icons

Ray Cheung recently published a link to a download pack which contains 21 PNG+PSD Web 2.0 icons. The icons were created by ilemoned and miniajax. Application developers or widget developers may find these icons handy as they are crisp and of very high quality. To download the social-media-icon pack, click on the image at the bottom of this post. The following icons are included in this pack.

Blinklist

Blogger

Bloglines

Box

Del.icio.us

Digg

Engadget

Feedburner

Flickr

Lifelogger

Netscape

Newsgator

Newsvine

Performancing

Reddit

Rojo

Rss

Stumbleupon

Technorati

WordPress

Zhuax

Social Media Icon Download Pack

*UPDATE* I know there are quite a few people finding this post via Google. The link to the download pack has been taken off line. After contacting who I believed to be the creator of the pack about the link, I have yet to receive a reply back. In the mean time, please visit a more recent post which contains a link to icon packs similar to the ones that are showcased in this one. 20 Awesome Free Icon Set

Amung.Us Crew Rolls Out Updates

Graphs.amung.us logo

The crew who brought you the free real-time concurrent user stats widget who’s.amung.us has unveiled a brand new service called graphs.amung.us.

For the graphs by year and by month we use averaged data from the hours and days to give you a better idea of how your site is doing. By day and by hour are the actual real time data points so you can see exactly what is happening. – graphs.amung.us team

This new graphing widget allows website owners to conveniently check how many concurrent people were on their site in the past, down to the hour. The graph features four different views: by year, by month, by day, and by hour This is an example of what the graph looks like while embedded into a web page.

Click to see full version by whos.amung.us

The graphs are also search able either via text or by clicking on the calendar icon and selecting a date. Here is an example of a graph containing data that you can search http://graphs.amung.us/graph/dzsg93pq/monthly/latest

Who's amung us widget colorwheelAside from the new graphing service, the amung.us team has published a brand new color wheel which finally allows web masters to change the color of the who’s.amung.us widget so that it can blend into your design. This was always a problem with the old widget as it was sometimes difficult to blend into a website design.

Last but not least, the amung.us website has been redesigned so that each widget’s individual webpage is linked to every other webpage. Excellent choice on their part as this allows browsers to seamlessly travel between one widget page to the other.