April 29, 2007

Will It Blend - 50 Marbles...

OK, so I haven't done a Will It Blend video for a while. No reason really. Just got caught up working on some other things recently.

So here's a special Will It Blend video just for you. 50 glass marbles in a blender. 50 maliciously massacred marbles! I guess you could say that they're being "deglassified." Har, har, har. But will they blend? Well, my friends, that is the question!

Share This Video
Flash Embed

Sample Copyright Infringement Notice...

As I promised in my previous post on copyright infringement, here's a copy of actual the Copyright Infringement Notice I use whenever I come across someone violating my copyrights for this blog. Feel free to use it yourself if you ever have the need!

Dear (Name),

This letter is to inform you that you are publishing my content "without" my permission, thereby violating my copyrights, which are protected by law under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). This puts you in breech of copyright.

I hereby request that you remove all of my content from the (infringer's site URL) website and database/databases, and any associated websites/databases immediately. You do not have my permission to use, host, publish or distribute my content in any way.

My website URL is: (your URL)

Please remove immediately ALL content you have taken from that website in accordance with this copyright infringement notice.

Known copyright violations are here: (list the specific page URL's where the site is displaying your content without your permission and thereby violating your copyrights).

Thank you for your immediate attention to this matter. If you have any questions regarding this notice, please contact me at your earliest convenience.

(Name, etc.)

Copyright Infringement - Is Someone Stealing Your Content?

I've spent the last few days dealing with some people who were blatantly stealing my blog content and posting it on their own websites without my permission. This, as you know, is copyright infringement - and it's illegal. Aside from that, it's also extremely irritating!

But some of these websites are not "really" websites, nor are they "really" blogs. They're what's known as scraper sites and they steal your content by webscraping. This basically means that they use an application like a webcrawler to take (scrape) content from your site feed, then publish all of your content on their own websites.

So the first thing I did was stop running full content feeds for this blog. My feed now only consists of blog post excerpts (For those of you who are subscribers to my feed you no doubt noticed this change a few days ago). This will eliminate the amount of content that can be "scraped".

How To Combat Copyright Infringement

What do you do when you discover someone is stealing your content? Here are the important steps you can take.

1. Contact the website's owner - Get in touch with the owner of the website and let him/her know that he/she is in breech of copyright, which is protected under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). Most of the time this will remedy things rather quickly.

Note: In my next post I'll provide a copy of the Copyright Infringement Notice I send to those violating my copyrights.

If you can't find an email address or contact form on the website, you can do a WHOIS lookup to find out who owns it. To do this just go to Whois.Net and enter the website's domain name. That'll give you the owner's email address, physical address and phone number.

Note: If the domain name is registered by proxy, this information will be unavailable. However, it'll give you the information needed to contact the domain's registrar.

2. Contact the website's registrar and host - If you made contact with the website's owner and he/she still has not removed your content, the next thing to do is contact the website's registrar and/or hosting company (this info. can be found via a WHOIS lookup as well). Let them know that the website is in breech of copyright and that you've attempted to contact the website's owner without success. They'll generally contact the site's owner on your behalf. Whenever I've had to to this the companies were of great help.

If the content still has not been removed you can request that the hosting company take the site offline completely. So be sure to let them know that they're "actively and knowingly" hosting a site that is infringing on your protected copyrights. Trust me, hosting companies would much rather remove a site than go to court for supporting one that is in breech of copyright.

3. Contact the website's advertisers - Get in contact with ALL advertisers on the site. And if the site is using or displaying any affiliate links, contact the companies that run those affiliate programs as well! Let them know that the website is illegally publishing your copyrighted content. Make it clear that you've sent copyright infringement notices, and that your copyrighted content still exists on the infringing site.

Some advertising mediums (like Google AdSense) provide forms for such notices and ad feedback. With Google AdSense, for example, just click on the "Ads by Google" portion of the AdSense ads on the copyright infringer's site. The page that pops up will have a feedback link at the bottom that will allow you to report copyright infringement and such.

Once you report copyright infringement, Google will then email you asking that you provide a written communication (by fax or regular mail, not by email) that describes and details the copyright infringement.

Important: Be absolutely sure that the website is indeed violating your copyrights (not just exercising the right of "fair use") BEFORE you send such a communication to Google. Why? Because you are actually liable for damages and attorneys' fees if you misrepresent that an activity is infringing your copyrights.

So be sure you know the law as well as your rights! The U.S. Copyright Office and Chilling Effects websites are your best friend when it comes to copy infringement info.

4. Get them banned from search engines - If you've followed steps 1 thru 3, but find that the website is still illegally displaying your copyrighted content, then you can file an "infringement notice" with Google and the other search engines. This may get them banned from those search engines completely.

Here's the direct link you can use to file a DMCA complaint with Google, letting them know that someone is violating your copyrights that are protected under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA):

Infringement Notification - Digital Millennium Copyright Act

Again, make sure that the site is truly in breech of copyright before you file such infringement notices as you can be held liable for damages and attorneys' fees if you misrepresent that an activity is infringing your copyrights.

5. Take legal action - If nothing else has worked, you can always take legal action against the copyright infringer.

Remember, your blog content is protected by copyright law. Your blog content is no different from the words that are printed in a novel or from the music that's burned on a CD. It's considered legally copyrighted the very second you write it. So don't let anyone steal your work. Fight back!

April 22, 2007

Kiwi's Dream Finally Comes True...

This is by far one of the most ingenious pieces of animation I've ever seen. It's quite sad when you think about it - but at least Kiwi finally achieved his dream of flight. Rock on Kiwi!

Share This Video
Flash Embed

And Speaking of ShoeMoney...

In my last post, How To Track, Evaluate And Improve Your Site, I mentioned Jeremy Shoemaker (a.k.a. ShoeMoney), one of the most successful bloggers and marketers on the web today.

But who'd even know it by this picture! Yes folks, we all have our moments! Need I say more? :P

Hey, at least it's chocolate. It shows he has class. Anything else and I'd be a bit concerned. But it's chocolate! I mean, can ya really blame him! ;)

Crazy Egg - How To Track, Evaluate And Improve Your Site

There are a lot of good tools out there that can help you track, analyze and enhance your blog's performance. For example, there's Google Analytics, an excellent tool that can easily help you identify which areas of your site or blog can be improved upon so that you can turn more of those clicks into sales.

But there's also another excellent website analytics option called Crazy Egg. Crazy Egg will help you track, evaluate and improve the performance of your blog or website. It'll show you where your visitors are clicking and how you can enhance your site's performance.

One of Crazy Egg's neatest features is Heatmaps. Heatmaps will quickly show you what's hot and what's not on your site - and it comes highly recommended. For example, when Jeremy Shoemaker (a.k.a. ShoeMoney) recently presented at the 2007 Search Engine Strategies Conference, one of the biggest tips he gave was to use Heatmaps. Regarding Crazy Egg's Heatmaps he said, "Trust me, it's your best friend."

What does Heatmaps do? Heatmaps shows you where people are clicking on your webpage. It also shows you which parts of your webpage could be used for other (more productive) things - and it does this in a very precise manner. For example, Heatmaps will tell you if people are clicking to the right of an image, to the left of an image, or directly in the center of an image. Now that's cool!

In ShoeMoney's case, he had three different ways in which his blog readers could leave comments on his blog. But through the use of Heatmaps he found that his readers were only using one of them. What's that mean? It means that the other two spots were essentially being wasted and could be used for other, more productive things instead.

Here's a quick look at some of the blog and website analytics offered by Crazy Egg:

Don't Forget Earth Day!

Remember, today is Earth Day! It's a day intended to inspire a greater awareness our Earth's environment, as well as a greater appreciation for it. Thanks to Yahoo! and Google for not forgetting this important day. Here are their logos for Earth Day, 2007.

I must say that Yahoo!'s Earth Day logo seems a bit more on the positive side - at least that's how it struck me. Google's, on the other hand, immediately made me think of the impending doom we could soon experience from glacial melting.

Nonetheless, I think they both send the same very important message: Get off your butt and do something that's helpful to the environment!

April 17, 2007

Viral Videos And The Naked Clay Nissan Man

Here's another good example of how viral videos can really give your business, blog or website a big boost. This video can really make a person feel more confident about buying a new car from these folks than from anyone else. It achieves this through humor.

In sales, humor is a goldmine. If you can get people to laugh with you, they'll relax. In turn, they'll be much more likely to trust you. But this video goes beyond that. Creatively, it's shot so that the viewer feels that he/she is empowered and important, as opposed to weak and inferior.

For example, take a look at the camera angle. It puts the viewer (i.e., the potential customer) in the position of superiority, while at the same time, making the man appear to be somewhat small and diminished in stature. The result? An entertainingly honest, nonthreatening car dealership that's looking out for your best interests.

This is superb advertising. Just watch the video and you'll see what I mean. In addition, stay tuned to Aaron Cook dot Com as I plan to do an interview with the Clay Corporation and get the specifics for you on how well this ad worked for them.

Blogger Code of Conduct - The Fight Club Version...

One of the topics that's been warping its way through the blogosphere recently is the idea of a "Code of Conduct" for bloggers.

The idea was originally brainstormed (or as I prefer to think, brainfarted) by Tim O'Reilly. I first read about it on Problogger, however, so that's where I'm linking. How's that for conduct! :P Sorry Tim, no backlink from me.

A Blogger's Code of Conduct, eh? Honestly, I think that's one of the most asinine things I've heard in a long, long time. Aside from that, there are just way too many holes in such a concept - the main one being that it could never be universally enforced, if enforced at all.

So, as my response to this monkeybutt of an idea, I've created what I think shall be the real Blogger's Code of Conduct. And it's amazingly simple:

1. No blogger, nonblogger, or blogger wanna-be shall EVER think of drafting a Blogger's Code of Conduct.
2. Always refer to #1.

Or, for all you movie buffs out there, we could also do the Fight Club version:

1st Rule:
You do not talk about making a Blogger's Code of Conduct.
2nd Rule: You DO NOT talk about making a Blogger's Code of Conduct.

April 15, 2007

The Transformers Movie - Will It Kick Some Butt?

I don't know about you, but I'm pretty stoked about the upcoming Transformers movie - which is due for release this very summer. And from what I've seen in the trailers so far, I have to say that it definitely looks quite amazing. Quite amazing, indeed.

For example, the CGI (Computer-generated Imagery) looks mind-blowingly realistic - so realistic, in fact, that it almost warps the mind just thinking about what our movies will achieve in only a few short years from now. Man, I cant wait!

As for the Transformers movie itself, it's scheduled to be released in theaters this July. In Australia, the release date is July 2nd. In the United States and Canada it's on July 4th. In the United Kingdom, however, they'll have to be a bit more patient. It won't be released there until July 27th. Blimey!

Anyway, you might be wondering which Transformers are actually going to star in the 2007 Transformers movie. Good thing I did some research on that. The Transformers you'll see duking it out on the silver screen this summer (Autobots vs. Decepticons) are as follows:

The Autobots: Optimus Prime (Peterbuilt Truck), Bumblebee (Chevy Camaro), Jazz (Pontiac Solstice), Ratchet (Hummer H2), Ironhide (GMC Topkick).

One Autobot note here: Bumblebee G1 (Generation 1) was always a Volkswagen Beetle - but much to producer Don Murphy's disappointment, Bumblebee was changed for the 2007 Transformers movie. So, instead of being a Volkswagen Beetle, Bumblebee became a 2008 Chevy Camaro (BOO, HISS, Throw tomatoes!). He was changed (supposedly) because director Michael Bay wanted to avoid a comparison with Herbie the Love Bug. Huh? Herbie the Love Bug?

Whatever. I don't believe that for a second. Rather, I think it might have more to do with General Motors wanting to feature all of their new vehicles in the movie. I mean, just take a look at the above lineup. It doesn't take a brain surgeon to put two an two together here. Occam's Razor anyone?

Aside from that, anyone who could actually confuse the Transformer Bumblebee with Herbie the Love Bug (or even make a comparison, for that matter) simply needs to break the pill in half the next time they take it! :P

The Decepticons: Megatron (Stealth Bomber), Starscream (F-22 Raptor), Brawl (Modified M1 Abrams), Bonecrusher (Buffalo H Mine-Protected Vehicle), Barricade (Saleen Ford Mustang Police Cruiser), Scorponok (Mechanical Scorpion), Frenzy (CD Player), Blackout (MH-53 Pave Low).

Here are some action shots from the movie...

Optimus Prime and Bonecrusher

Bumblebee Transforms Into Battle Mode

Scorponok Attacks US Soldiers

The Human Element

Barricade Attacks Sam Witwicky

Optimus Prime In Action Again

If you haven't had a chance yet to check out the Transformers movie trailers, you can get them all here.

April 13, 2007

Aaron Cook Dot Com™ Officially Launches...

Happy Friday the 13th! I've got some really cool news to share with today. This blog is now "officially" the Aaron Cook Dot Com™ blog. Yep, after more than four long years of waiting I was finally able to acquire the AaronCook.com domain name. Woo hoo!

Luckily, I was able to snag it the very second it was available - for just $7.85. Can't beat that! And what's funny is that as soon as I got it I was contacted by another Aaron Cook who had also been trying to acquire it for quite a while. He asked if I'd be willing to sell, but as you can see, I wasn't. And as it turns out, he lives about 35 minutes away from me. Go figure.

He's a digital artist who's currently studying digital media production with a focus on Flash. He seemed like a really nice guy, so if I get my hands on some of his work I'll post it here to give him some publicity and free advertising. I think it's the nice thing to do.

Anyway, be sure to update your bookmarks and such! And stay tuned for some more exciting news and improvements. Right now I'm working on some basic HTML stuff to enhance functionality and aesthetics. I plan to completely move this blog over to WordPress very soon, so that will be quite exciting as well.

April 12, 2007

Earn Cash For Reviewing My Posts...

Whether you like my posts on this blog, or whether you don't (Mom? :P), you can now take advantage of having a personal opinion - and at the same time, make some money for it!

Now you can earn a cool $7.50 just for having an opinion here! As you probably noticed, I recently added a new money-making feature for you on this blog. Below each post you'll see a button that reads, "Get Paid To Review My Post."

What does it mean? Well, if you have a blog, then you can simply do a review of any one of my blog posts, and in turn, you'll be paid $7.50. Wow, talk about easy money. Yep, that's what it's all about!

Simply click on the "Get Paid To Review My Post" button and you’ll be taken to the new user registration page. Just sign up, and when you do a review of any one of my blog posts, you'll be paid a cool $7.50 for it. Man, talk about some deliciously easy money-making snack cake! :)

April 11, 2007

Will It Blend? A Baseball...

Now that baseball season is upon us, Tom Dickson is throwing out the very first pitch...right into his Blendtec Total Blender. Will it blend? Well, that is the question!

Share This Video
Flash Embed

Firefox And Retarded Browsers...

A while back I updated my computer by downloading Microsoft's most recent web browser, Internet Explorer 7. So after several weeks of using IE 7, what do I think of it? Well, without going into any great detail, and to put it rather bluntly, I think IE 7 totally blows! Bottom line, stick to Firefox. And if you don't use Firefox, then for the love of Pete, start using it!

Anyway, here's a funny video I came across on Lord Matt's blog that pretty much sums it up. What a shame that there are still so many crappy browsers out there taking up valuable disc space.

April 10, 2007

Donated My Car To The Kars-4-Kids Charity...

Well, I'm happy to say that I got a new car last week. And of course, I'm totally enjoying it! But this post isn't actually going to be about me or about my new car. Instead, it's going to be about what I chose to do with the old one.

As you know, whenever you buy a new car you generally have a handful of choices of what you can do with the old one. Basically, you can keep it, you can trade it in at the dealership, or you can sell it privately. But there's another good choice as well. You can choose to donate it to charity!

And that's just what I did. I donated my car to the Kars-4-Kids. And I must say that the entire process was amazingly quick and simple. When I got home with the new car I called Kars-4-Kids and told them that I'd like to donate my car. Here's how easy it was...

They took some basic information from me, which included: my name, address and my phone number, as well as the the make, model and VIN number of the car I was donating. Then they arranged for it to be towed to the donation center (for free) the very next day. All I had to do was leave the keys in the car, along with the title, and that was that!

Kars-4-Kids also gave me the choice of donating a portion my donated car's value to the charity of my choice. So, for that I chose the Lupus Foundation of America since one of my very best friends from college actually has Lupus. In fact, she's going in for hip replacement surgery this Thursday, so be sure to keep her in your thoughts!

All in all, I feel really great about donating my car to charity. Sure, the money from trading it in or from selling it would have been nice to have, but I think it's always important to be keenly aware that there are good folks among us who are worse off than we are. And if I can help in any way, then by damn I will! And hopefully you will too.

April 8, 2007

Happy Easter Everyone!

'Nuff said.

April 7, 2007

Harass Me! C'mon, You Know You Want To!

About This Blog: Hello! I'm Aaron and this is my personal blog. It covers a vast variety of topics such: blog resources, making money online, site reviews, cool videos, humor and more. Basically, whatever I feel like writing about when I sit down to blog. I appreciate your visiting, and hope you enjoy your time here. :)

How To Contact Me:

If you'd like to contact me, whether it be for advertising, for a site review, or just to say hello, you can reach me by filling out the comment box at the end of this post.

The Aaron Cook Dot Com™ Privacy Policy

As an Internet user myself, I understand the importance of online privacy. So it goes without saying that I'm fully committed to safeguarding your online privacy while you're here at the AaronCook.com website.

And that's precisely why I've decided to include the following, which discloses the information gathering and dissemination practices for this website.

Log Files

Like most standard websites, this website uses log files. These include: Internet Protocol addresses (IP addresses), browser type, Internet Service Provider (ISP), referring and exit pages, platform type, date and time stamp, and the number of clicks to analyze trends, administer the site, track user movement in the aggregate, and to gather broad demographic information for aggregate use. IP addresses, etc., are not linked to personally identifiable information.

Web Cookies and Web Beacons

Web cookies (also known as HTTP cookies, or just cookies) are parcels of text that are sent by a server to a Web browser, and then sent back unchanged by the browser each time it accesses that server.

Web beacons are objects that are embedded in a webpage or email that are invisible to the user, but allow checking that a user has viewed the page or email. Other names are web bug, tracking bug, tag or page tag.

This website uses cookies. Additionally, some of my business partners (for example, advertisers) may use cookies and web beacons as well. This site has no access to, or control over advertisers' cookies and/or web beacons.

If you wish to disable cookies, you may do so through your individual browser options.


This website contains links to other websites. Please be aware that I am not responsible for the privacy practices of other websites. I encourage you, when you leave this website, to read the privacy statements and policies of each and every website you visit, as this particular privacy policy applies solely to this particular website.


I use several outside advertising networks and companies in order to display ads on this site. These ads may contain cookies and/or web beacons in order to collect data in the ad serving process. These such cookies and/or web beacons are collected by the companies and advertising networks themselves. I do not have any access to this information.

I currently work with several advertising networks and companies, some of which include: Google (Google AdSense), AdBrite and LinkBucks. If you have any questions, please check their websites for their respective privacy policies.

Webmaster Contact Information

If you have any questions or suggestions regarding the Aaron Cook Dot Com™ privacy policy, please feel free to contact me by filling out the comment form below.

Many thanks, and be sure to make it a fantastic day! :)

Will It Blend? Sony MiniDV Digital Camcorder...

If you've ever wondered what the view might look like from the inside of a blender while it's ferociously blending something into tiny bits of indeterminate matter (like this here Sony digital camcorder), then here you go!

Share This Video
Flash Embed

April 5, 2007

AGLOCO Viewbar Release Details...

Brian Greenwald recently posted an update regarding this month's release of the AGLOCO Viewbar. In case you haven't gotten a chance yet to stop by the AGLOCO Company Blog, here's a snippet of his post. Just click the picture for full size.

If you haven't signed up for AGLOCO yet, go here.

AGLOCO Simplified...

  • Surf the web just like you always have.
  • Companies pay AGLOCO for advertising.
  • AGLOCO pays YOU for surfing.
  • Earn money for those you refer - down to 5 levels.

April 4, 2007

Mac vs. PC Parody Video - Macs Gay?

Hmmm, I dunno. See for yourself. From one of the most sarcastic jerks on the web (no, not me) comes this funny Mac vs. PC parody. Brace yourself, it's from Maddox!

The Mac vs. PC Parody

April 2, 2007

Best of April Fool's Day - Were You Fooled?

Now that April Fool's Day is over with, I've had some time to reflect on the many hysterical pranks I saw this year on the blogs and websites I visit. And that got me thinking about the many April Fool's Day pranks and hoaxes from this year and from years past.

Personally, I love April Fool's Day. Just thinking about it conjures up so many weird and wonderful memories. Like the time my mom caught my dad sleeping with another woman...and he tried getting out of it by claiming it was just an April Fool's prank. Wow, what guts! OK, so my dad really didn't get caught sleeping with another woman. It was my mom. Har har, just kidding. :P


Google TiSP...

This year offered up some very good hoaxes as well. As they do every year, Google executed some unusual and well-planned pranks. For starters, they offered a fictitious free broadband service called Google TiSP. Google's TiSP ("T" is for toilet) would make use of your toilet and sewer lines to give you a free Internet connection with three different speeds: Trickle (8 Mbps), The #2 (16 Mbps) and Royal Flush (32 Mbps). Funny stuff.

By the way, thanks and credit go to Derrich for the Google TiSP find. I came across it on his blog, which in my opinion is pretty lame and sucky...but only on Opposite Day! On regular days it's rather cool. I suggest you drop by and see what he's up to these days.

Google Gmail Paper...

Back to Google. They also announced their implementation of Gmail Paper, which offered all Google Gmail users the option to add their emails to a "Paper Archive," which Google would print on "96% post-consumer organic soybean sputum" and mail to them via snail mail.

In another good prank, Matt Cutts, who is a member of Google's quality group and specializes in search engine optimization (SEO) issues, claimed that his blog (Gadgets, Google, and SEO) had been hacked by the Dark SEO Team. Below is a screenshot of the prank.

And as any good prankster knows to do, Matt Cutts prepared ahead of time by leaving this post on his blog the night before April Fool's Day...

"My site has been acting a little slow and weird today. I checked my logs, and I’m seeing a lot of GET requests causing strange errors. Most of the requests have escaped Unicode characters, but they don’t appear valid. Sorry that the site is kinda slow; I’m going to be away from the computer until around late Monday, so I don’t have time to check it now, but I’ll try to track it down when I get back."

Great April Fool's Pranks...

Here's a quick list (in chronological order) of some of the best April Fool's Day pranks of all time. It's truly amazing what things people will fall for. Almost mind-boggling.

Swiss Spaghetti Harvest - After 50 years, the Swiss spaghetti harvest prank still ranks at the top. In 1957 the BBC news program Panorama announced that due to a very mild winter and the virtual elimination of the spaghetti weevil, Swiss farmers were enjoying a great spaghetti crop. The announcement was accompanied by footage of people picking spaghetti from spaghetti trees. Thousands of viewers were fooled and called in wanting to know how they could grow their own spaghetti. Classic...or should I say Classico. :P

Smell-O-Vision - In 1965, the BBC pulled another prank and conducted a trial of a new technology allowing the transmission of odor over the airwaves. Countless television viewers contacted the BBC to report the trial's success. The hoax was repeated again in 2005 by the Seven Network in Australia. And this year the BBC did it all over again on their website, announcing their new Sniff-screen Technology.

Defying Gravity - In 1976, the British astronomer Sir Patrick Moore told listeners of BBC Radio 2 that a unique alignment of two planets would cause an upward gravitational pull that would make people lighter at 9:47 a.m. that day. He invited the radio audience to jump into the air and experience a "strange floating sensation." Dozens of listeners phoned in to say they had felt it. Ha, quite an uplifting experience!

Most Pathetic April Fool's Prank

2007 - And the award goes to...Slashfood! They reported that Rachel Ray had been elected president of the United States. I'm not even gonna to link to it since I think it's so lame.