News and developments in the community.

Friday, November 30, 2007

A busy November

Many thanks to all our club members who made time to attend our workshop, share their knowledge, and celebrate Christmas early.

Check out the ICT for Women Workshop photos and Christmas Party photos. Will also be uploading presentation materials, new reports, among others next week. Have a great year end!


Tuesday, November 13, 2007

November 28: Club 30th Networking Event / Christmas Party

The Club will be having its 30th networking event this November 28, Thursday, 6:00 to 9:00 pm. The venue shall be at Ponciana's Kitchen, 67 Timog Ave. corner Sct. Torillo, South Triangle Quezon City.

This gathering will not be possible without the support of our sponsor IPVG - a publicly listed entity in the Philippine Stock Exchange and engaged in the information technology and communications space. IPVG owns three operating subsidiaries engaged in information technology and telecommunications, on-line gaming, and business process outsourcing.

This event is exclusive for Club members only and are requested to confirm attendance for food count purposes. Those who submitted entries to the Filipina Writing Project were also invited.

Interested non-members are requested to sign up as a member prior to November 28.

Agenda shall be as follows:

5:30 - 6:00 Registration
6:00 - 6:30 Introduction and updates by each club member and blogger guests
6:30 - 6:45 Club Updates

7:00 - 7:30 Announcement: Winners of The Filipina Writing Project
(Prizes sponsored by,,,, Acclaim Butterflies, and )

7:30 - 8:00 Online Gaming (Enrique Y. Gonzalez, IPVG)

8:00 Exchange Gift / Raffle / Networking

To celebrate the Christmas season, all attendees are encouraged to bring a Christmas exchange gift worth P250.

We are also getting some raffle prizes as well. Should you like to donate prizes for the raffle, please e-mail me at digitalfilipino (at) gmail (dot) com. We will list the raffle items and donors here.

Club members are requested to confirm their attendance for food count purposes.

Interested non-members are requested to sign up as a member prior to November 28 and confirm attendance for food count purposes.

There are three types of membership: Individual, SME, Corporate.

I hope you can all join. Thank you.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Web and E-Commerce Hands-On Workshop

All Club members are invited to attend the forthcoming Web and E-Commerce Workshop series this: Club SME members can send 1 representative while Corporate members can send 2 representatives.

Individual club members can attend a one-day (or two half-day) session. Please confirm for food count purposes.

The training program shall be as follows:

November 12: Improving Website Performance and Navigation
November 13: Web 2.0 Applications
  • 9:00 - 12:00 Overview of Web 2.0 Applications
    • Introduction to Machine Learning
    • Applications
      • product / content recommendations
      • group clustering
      • search engine
      • needs matching
      • decision predictions
      • price models
      • independent content matching
    • Hands-on exercises
    • Guest resource:
  • 1:00 - 5:00 Building Web 2.0 applications
    • Using Open Web Application Programming Interfaces (APIs)
    • Facebook Application Platform
    • Google OpenSocial
    • Hands-on exercises
November 17: Internet Marketing Workshop
  • 9:00 - 12:00 E-Mail / Newsletter Marketing
    • Introduction to E-Mail Marketing
      • Components of an E-Mail Marketing Campaign
      • Hands-on exercise
    • Introduction to Newsletter Creation
      • Creating a newsletter
      • Hands-on exercise
  • 1:00 - 5:00 Search Engine Marketing
    • Search engine optimization
      • Keyword research
      • Keyword placement in web site or blog
      • Content is key
        • Writing good titles, description, and articles
      • Re-directing pages
      • Sitemap creation
    • RSS creation
    • Submission to Web Directories
    • Internet Advertising (paid placements)
    • Monitoring Web Site Traffic
November 24: Accepting Payments Online
Interested non-members are requested to sign up as an Individual, SME, or Corporate member prior to November 12 and confirm attendance for food count purposes.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Sharing RSS feeds in your Orkut profile

In my column today, I talked about Web 2.0, collective intelligence, and the recent Google OpenSocial. Unplanned, that was a quick follow-up to a piece I wrote last month as well about Facebook. The nice thing about competition is that these providers are exerting the best effort as possible to make things easier for users.

I am researching about Web 2.0 these days but more on the hands-on side with the book Programming Collective Intelligence written by Toby Segaran as a guide. In preparation for the Web 2.0 workshop session on November 13, I tried Google OpenSocial earlier today and created a modified version of its Feed in Tabs. Installing in any website will look like this.

I also installed the application in my Orkut page, after getting approval for Orkut sandbox access, and the same feed now appears in my site. Those who try to install the same will be able to edit the rss feed address to show their blogs or of others if they like. Just state this url (copy the url link) as the application source in your applications page. I can't wait until all sites who are part of the Google OpenSocial alliance or partners will start allowing users to install applications.

There is much you can do on the Internet today and web developers do not necessarily have to be confine in just building the website using codes of their own, they can also tap in "social" codes to engage more users - if done well. Other references that can be tapped includes:

Friday, November 02, 2007

Improving Website Navigation

On the afternoon of November 12, I'll be having a session on Web Navigation. This topic was heavily inspired by the book Designing Web Navigation by James Kalbach. The main premise for the workshop is whether you are planning a new website or revising an existing one, it is important that we keep ourselves focused on what we want to achieve that includes why are we doing it, how can we meet the needs of our target users, among others.

We need to do an information search process that tends to reflect the action, thoughts, and feelings of the site visitor and what can we do to meet them. An example can be like in the case of DigitalFilipino users.

1. Initiation: Recognize need to look for e-commerce information.
2. Selection: Choose appropriate resources.
3. Searching: Locate relevant articles.
4. Differentiation: Prioritize search results.
5. Deciding: Determine which article is most relevant.
6. Monitor: Check site over time for additional articles.
7. Action: Join the mailing list or subscribe to the RSS feed or join the club.

Each item above requires understanding on the actions, thoughts, and feelings of the user (and their persona) which will also compel site owners like me to provide features and that will arrive on the kind of business return that I want to get from it such as awareness, referrals, gaining trust or relationship, potential book buyers or club members later on.

In addition, this also forces me to review my site navigation, labels, menu, among others whether I'm leading users to the things that they need and what I want to achieve.

If the e-business operates in a cut throat market such as those selling various gift products, evaluating the competitor's web navigation and labeling methods versus yours will be helpful as well.

Improving this will also require doing interviews and task analysis. One method that can help in this process is card sorting. This is where you write one item or content in your website per card. This gets shuffled and given to users. They then sort the card and create piles or groups. Afterwards, they give a meaningful name that represent each pile or group of cards. This process gives you a perspective on how prospective users classify the information that gets presented to them and may help you in developing your site's content structure. There are several online version of this that you can use such as as CardSword, CardSort, CardZort, among others.

There are several tools that can be used to have an initial check up on your website navigation. This includes: