Building a Web Presence
the hits to my work-in-progress website, Prancyhorse.comówhich
receives approximately three hits a day from non-relativesóIíve devised an
intriguing strategy for building a diverse internet audience. Because
Prancyhorse.com has a wide variety of peculiar phrases, it features very prominently
in certain web searches. For instance, someone accessed the website
because it is the top Yahoo! search result if you type in the phrase ďrat
Iíve found that many of the strangest searches have come from abroad, which
may be my ticket to an international presence. So far, Iíve gotten a
smattering of hits from odd search results (my definition of international
includes ďredĒ states). Here are the subjects of some notable searches,
the location of the searcher and Prancyhorse.comís search engine ranking for
- Mikhail Barishnikov—Morocco, Montreal, New Zealand, Taiwan, North
Carolina; if I spelled his name correctly, nobody would notice, but Prancyhorse.com
is the #6 website in Yahoo! for searches on this particular misspelling.
- Paris Austerlitz Train Station—Brazil; ranking unknown.
- Spanish separatists—China; ranking unknown.
- Beaver dam destruction—Calgary; ranking unknown.
- Jeff Lewis Vancouver—Edmonton; #1 in Yahoo!
- Train From Madrid Nice—The Hague, Netherlands; #3 in Yahoo!
- Nice Train Station—The Hague, Netherlands; #5 in Yahoo!
- Isaac Misrahi designer—Virginia, #5 in Yahoo!
- Jeans paris hilton cutoff—Virginia, #1 in Yahoo!
- The Cosby Show Quotes Elvin—California (not a ďredĒ state, yet);
sure everyone left my site disappointed, especially the person from the Hague,
who no doubt wondered why he got tricked into clicking on my link a second
the subject of search engines, I thought Iíd mention an interesting web page
that I viewed recently. Iím sure you are aware that in the late nineties,
there were oodles of search engines, but the varying fortunes of internet
companies resulted in buyouts, bankruptcies and revamped business models.
Today, many of the old search engine names remainóAsk Jeeves, Lycos, AOL Search,
MSN Searchóbut nearly all get their search content from one of three sources:
Yahoo!, Google and a volunteer-based engine called The Open Directory Project,
which operates more or less like an open source program. For a fairly
interesting diagram that tracks the relationships between the different search
engines, see Bruce
Clay, Inc.ís website. I also recommend this site for those of you
who donít care about search engines, but like colorful circles and arrows.
not satisfied with that link, let me throw a few more your way:
- If you have a spare 45 seconds and would like to look at an interesting
clock, check out the scribbly
notebook clock. If you have another minute or so to kill, you
might as well take a look at Clockblock.
- Iíve never been terribly excited about kaleidoscopes, especially when
I was a kid. I believed fervently from an early age that they are
a collectable, not a toy. Nor was I particularly excited to find that
a B & B in St. Andrews, Scotland, where I stayed back in 1995, was once
owned by Sir David Brewster, the inventor of that slow-to-die fad.
However, I recommendówith only a little reservationóa
21st century version, which, of course, can be discarded and forgotten
the moment that you tire of itóunless there is some spyware hidden within
the website that Iím unaware of. Thatís not a very strong endorsement,
so let me add this: itís mildly fun and it will not clutter your shelves.
- If you made it through the previous recommendations, you may like T.Y.P.O.R.G.A.N.I.S.M.
This is an odd but stylish website that got me very excited when I saw a
link to a Visual Composter. When I found that it was actually a music
composer, my desire to view composted vegetable matter wasnít satisfied,
but I did enjoy creating a little ditty.
- Itís not the right time of year to see this phenomenon, but during our
road trip this past summer, we saw dozens of Asian tourists wearing what
looked like welding visors to protect themselves from sun exposure.
After a lengthy search, I tracked down a website
that actually makes them look less loopy than they appear in person.
I canít rightfully say anything bad about a product that claims to cut out
99% of the sunís UV radiation for only twenty dollars, plus shipping and
- When you hit the road to look for women in welding visors, you might as
well keep your eye out for Muffler
Men. These Paul Bunyon-esque fiberglass statues dot the nation,
with a high concentration in the Los
Angeles basin. If you havenít gotten enough kitschy Americana
after reading about the Muffler Men, go to Roadside Americaís home page
for all the roadside oddities that you can stomach.
and a few more peculiar or misspelled words in my portfolio, maybe someone
in Suriname will include Babblog or Prancyhorse.com in a similar list of whimsical
websites. With that in mind, I close with this: Nobody reads a
bedtime story like Peter Falk.
Jeff Lewis, 2004