Posts Tagged ‘Social media Marketing’

The Holy Trinity of Online Video Watching

April 18, 2012

In this post I am going to breakdown how Torrents work and introduce you to three sites that will revolutionise your online entertainment experience. Theoretically I use Torrentz, Project Free TV, and Veetle to access the shows and movies I want to watch.

Torrents or BitTorrents are files shared with the BitTorrent  p2p (peer-to-peer) network, or a file-sharing protocol.  In simpler terms, BitTorrents are files shared by a group of individual computers on the network rather than stored on one central server.  BitTorrent p2p sharing breaks the download into chunks ranging in size between 64KB and 4MB and distributes it across several different computers as opposed to just one. The person who first creates a torrent for any file is called an initial seeder.  People who have all the chunks are seeders, the more seeds the quicker the download will be. Once you finish downloading the file then you become a seed. People who do not have the whole file yet are called peers.  Peers are not seeders but the more peers the faster the download because peers can share the chunks of the file that has so-far been downloaded.  This is especially important if the number of seeds is low or decreasing because peers can piece together the file with the chunks they have between them.

In order to download a movie you first need to search for the file on a BitTorrent search engine, theoretically I use Torrentz.  One simply enters the title of the movie they want and a list of BitTorrents will appear.  There are two columns of numerical values to pay attention to: the green numbers represent the seeders and the blue represent the number of peers. High numbers of each are best for download speed.

 

Once the torrent file has been downloaded it must be run using a BitTorrent client.  You cannot download BitTorrents without a BitTorrent client; for example: uTorrent for Windows, Vuze formerly (Azureus) for Mac, and BitTorrent for Linux.  BitTorrent Clients keep track of what chunks of the file you have and which parts you still need to download.

*It should be noted that using BitTorrent is legal but downloading copyrighted material is not.

BitTorrents are not the only way to watch films and TV shows.  You can stream TV on a great site called Project Free TV. I love this site however it takes some getting used to because of the buffering and advertising.  If you don’t have a strong internet-connection it can take ages to buffer.  The other drawback is the ads.  Sometimes you click on a link for a program and you inadvertently trigger two or three pop-ups.  Some of the ads are over-laid and you need to close them before the play button becomes accessible.  Also, if you are streaming a film you may have to close a pop-up every 20 mins or so.  In any case, project Free TV is a great option because it streams quite fast and they have an extensive selection of programs and films.

Watching live streaming channels in high resolution is also an option which brings me to Veetle.  You just need to download the plugin (65 MB) and then you can watch live streamed TV in HD, high-definition.  They use the latest codecs for the best video quality and there is no buffering required.  Obviously it’s live so you can’t pause or fast-forward but it’s free and not frequently interrupted by ads.

Veetle has a few extra features worth mentioning: you can download the app and live stream TV on your iPad, iPhone & Android phones, and you can broadcast live video in HD.   Veetle has over 10 million viewers a month, which is not bad for the little Sillicon Vally start-up.

Now here’s an impressive UFO video:

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My Top Ten Twitter Tools for 2011

January 23, 2011
Here is my list of the best Twitter tools I have come across this year.  Hope you enjoy.
  1. Topsy.com – Is a social media search engine.  Enter any term and find out who’s tweeting, blogging, reporting or YouTubing about it.  You can also track your tweets and blog posts by entering either your Twitter handle or the title of your latest blog in quotations.
  2. Retweeting – otherwise known as a RT (RT@ Haarpia… for instance) is like referencing a source in an academic paper, it’s also considered a courtesy to give credit where credit is due. There is another reason why RT’ing is good: as you may or may not know, when you first follow someone they do not know you exist and cannot see your tweets, by RT’ing you remind them that you exist and they might appreciate the RT and follow you back…or not.
  3. HashTags – hashtags are fun and useful.  A popular hashtag is #Follow Friday where people broadcast new, favourite or cool people they are following like this: #FollowFriday @haarpia, @detr_X, #syncwinnipeg etc.  You can join trending hashtags by adding your own tweet to the back of the hashtag, for example: #TaylorSwift – Kanye stole your mic not your virginity, get over it! The beauty of hashtags is that your tweet is added to a timeline of tweets with the same hashtag so people that are not following you get to see your tweets.  You can add a hashtag to certain words like names, places, brands etc. So if you were tweeting a link to an article on Darfur, you would put a hashtag in front of Darfur, like this: #Darfur
  4. Bit.ly – is a URL shortener.  With only 140 characters to work with, it’s good to have a service that shortens URL’s, need I say more?
  5. Social Oomph.com – is a site that has features like auto-follow/unfollow.  It also allows you to set criteria for following people which is very helpful because although it may be courteous to follow people that follow you, sometimes spammers follow you and you wouldn’t want to auto-follow them! A set of criteria will weed those people out. It also has options for auto-thank you/auto-greetings; it’s hard to keep up with new followers especially when we get the notifications and we’re not near a computer.  With this feature you can greet and thank new followers automatically or include a link in the message directing them to your Facebook page, blog or YouTube channel.  Additional features also allow you to rotate between a few different greeting options so that not everyone gets the same one. Scheduling future tweets is another good feature for when you want to send tweets out at a time when there is high Twitter traffic but can’t. This feature makes it easy to get your tweets out at a whatever time you want.
  6. Twitcam.com -Twitcam is a live video streaming site that posts your video description and link to Twitter for all your followers to see. While broadcasting you can chat with your viewers via a Twitter window located on your broadcast page. Once you’re done going live, it archives your video and displays it on the same page. There is no sign up required and it is 100% Free (ad supported), it doesn’t require any software and can handle up to 100,000+ viewers and also gives you an option to broadcast your video on other social networks.
  7. MyTweeple.comis a friend/follower managing dashboard. It has very cool features that allow you to publicly or privately put tags on followers which makes it easier to search for them and adds another layer to listing them.  It also enables you to follow, unfollow, hide, block or “ding” a follower directly from the dashboard. What is Ding you ask? If you ding a follower it is a warning to others that this person is a spammer or a general nuisance. The site also offers an option for jotting down private notes about a particular follower as well.  I’m sure I don’t need to explain why this might be useful. It also has some great display features. For instance, it shows who your following, who is following you, who you’re following that follows you, and it has an option to see people that you’ve unfollowed. Other display data includes name, screename, location, description or tag (word or phrase) for each of your followers.  Additional information and options displayed for each of your followers include who they’re following and who’s following them, how many tweets they’ve made, and you can see their lists and recent tweets. The only glitch to using this app is that you need to sync regularly with Twitter but they make it easy by enabling you to schedule an automatic sync from the dashboard.
  8. Nearbytweets.comLets you see tweets in any city worldwide on any subject.
  9. Tweepsync (http://sync.tweeptycoon.com/)- Isolates those you follow that don’t follow you, those that follow you that you don’t follow, and it lets you bulk unfollow or follow, as the case may be. They’ve also added a new feature which allows you to unfollow people that you are following in bulk. I guess this feature is for those of us with followers remorse.
  10. Selective Twitter Status – lets you update your Facebook status from Twitter AND you can choose which tweets to send to your Facebook status — just end a tweet with #fb – it’s that simple!

Now here’s a great video:

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