If you have a question that you're just dying to ask me that isn't listed here, leave a comment on my xanga or e-mail your question to me. If your answer isn't mentioned here, it may be listed in one of these two sections: Blogging Thoughts or Basic Blog Info. This section is not called the FAQ because many of these questions are not frequently asked. As of February 22, 2006, I've decided to extend the Q & A to include questions that are not relevant at all to my xanga site.|
Last updated on July 23, 2006.
On your blog about doughnuts, you stated that doughnuts have a power of 1.22 megatons if thrown at the speed of light. How did you get this information?
See below, or click here.
Where are your sources and where do you get your information?
Every now and then, someone who is skeptical of the random facts that are mentioned on my blog will come forth and ask how I was able to obtain certain information. Some people think that I just make up these facts, but that isn't true. To be honest, not a whole lot of research is done when it comes to writing each blog. Some blogs, such as Xanga vs. Myspace Part 2 and The Existence of Luck, don't require research at all. Of course, some research has to be done to make sure that what I've written is true and the random facts are the main things that have to be researched. These are easily found in numerous random fact lists on the internet; however, I actually make sure that such facts are real by getting rid of ones that are too ambiguous to be true or have no chance of being determined. I've also calculated a few random facts of my own. Allow me to use an example:
On my 69th weekly blog on the Power of Doughnuts, I stated the following:
"Don't underestimate the potential power of a doughnut! If it were possible to throw a doughnut at the speed of light, it would have an explosive power of 1.22 megatons, which is 122 times more powerful than the first nuclear bombs that were dropped."
It's possible to calculate the potential power of any object by using Einstein's famous e=mc2 formula, which means that there is a relationship between the mass of an object and energy. I based my calculation on the assumption that a typical medium-sized doughnut weighs about 2 ounces, which is equivalent to about 56.7 grams or 0.056698 kilograms. With this information in mind, I simply plug the numbers into the e=mc2 formula:
0.056698 kg x 299,792,458 m/s2 = 5,095,762,112,402,008.655272 joules
Next, I converted joules to megatons, which is the standard measurable unit for nuclear bombs and other powerful explosives:
5,095,762,112,402,008.655272 joules = 1.217916375 megatons
For convenience purposes, I rounded it off to 1.22 megatons. With a power of 1.22 megatons, this makes it 122 times more powerful than the first nuclear bomb that was dropped during World War 2:
The first nuclear bomb dropped = 10,000 tons.
One megaton = 1,000,000 tons.
1.22 megatons = 1,220,000 tons.
1,220,000 / 10,000 = 122 times greater.
Of course, a doughnut with an explosive power of 1.22 megatons isn't too powerful in comparison with modern nuclear weapons. Still, it's powerful enough to wipe out a large city and kill more than a half million people. I know that it's useless information, but it's still amusing in its own way. Perhaps we'll be able to hurl objects such as doughnuts at the speed of light someday. Or maybe it's better if we don't!
Another example that I'd like to use is the following statement from my blog about The Benefits of Drinking Soda:
"More than 15 billion gallons of soft drinks are sold every year in the United States alone, which also equates to more than 17 ounces per person every day."
How did I come up with this one? It's easy. We know that one gallon is equivalent to 128 ounces, so:
15,000,000,000 gallons x 128 ounces = 1,920,000,000,000 ounces.
And since there are approximately 300,000,000 people living in the United States:
1,920,000,000,000 ounces/300,000,000 people = 6,400 ounces.
There are 365 days in a year:
6,400 ounces / 365 days = 17.53424657 (and so on) ounces per person every day
The population of the United States was actually closer to 298 million when I calculated it, but the answer would've came out to be about 17.65 ounces, which isn't that big of a deal anyway. Do such scant differences even matter? :)
Of course, these calculations are among the easiest to calculate. By the way, I hate math so please don't ask me to do your homework. Chances are, I have just as many problems with math as you and the next person.
Why isn't the most recent Wednesday post listed under my Protected Posts?
I know that a lot of people don't read their subscriptions on the protected list, so the most recent Wednesday post will always be set to Public. This means that anyone, even people who aren't subscribed to my site, can read the Wednesday blog for the week.
How did your xanga get so popular?
My xanga site really isn't as "popular" as you might think it is. I've been writing here for a while but most people have never even seen my blog before because I only update twice per week and have only recently signed up for xanga premium. Without regular updates, my blog receives most of its traffic through loyal readers, random people who find my blog and subscribe to me, friends of loyal readers who like my blog, being mentioned on other people's blogs, and even xanga users who find this page through a search engine. :)
In addition, I don't blog for popularity or anything. I feel that it's a waste of time and seriously takes the joy out of writing. Is status supposed to be more important than getting your thoughts across? I'd rather help other people promote their xanga sites, and you can read more about it under the Basic Blog Info section.
I'm writing a research paper. What is your name so I credit you on my works cited page?
If it's MLA style, you don't need to know my name or anything. Just follow this style:
Secret Agent Orange. "Title of Blog Post." Therandomblog - An Extroverted Xanga Site. Date of post. <LINKTOBLOGPOST> (Date Accessed).
Just change the variables that are highlighted in red. By the way, I'd like to caution anyone who wishes to cite my xanga blog for research papers that I almost never go in-depth on a particular topic for any of my blogs. My blog, for the most part, exists for amusement purposes only. You shouldn't rely on the things that you read on my blog to give you all the information that you'll need to know about a certain topic because it doesn't. :)
How can I read your Wednesday entries?
To read my Wednesday posts, you have to be on my Protected list, and in order to be on this list, you have to be subscribed to me. Once added to the Protected List, you can read the Wednesday blogs from the Protected posts tab of your subscriptions browser or simply sign in and view the contents of my page. For convenience purposes, you can click here to view a whole list of them.
I understand that the Protected list can be a very personal thing, so let me know if you wish to be removed from it.
Do you comment back?
Absolutely. Whether you leave "random props" or a rather informative post that shows that you actually read my post, I'll be sure to get back to you. After all, it's only fair to write back to you if you took the time to visit my site. And yes, I do take the time to read and respond to comments. It may take a few days to write back to you, but you can be assured that I'll write back. So please don't ask me to write back to you, especially if I'm subscribed to you because I try to write to subscribers whenever I can.
However, I won't write back to you if...
You leave chain letters! I've been getting many of these lately, so I'm no longer responding to people who send these to me. And they're really annoying too.
You leave negative comments. Arguing over the internet is pointless and people who antagonize me don't deserve my time anyway.
Your blog fails to load on my browser. Yes, there are some sites out there that will crash both my Internet Explorer and Firefox browsers when I try to access them.
The HTML coding of your blog interferes with the ability to leave comments. I can probably find a way to get around it, but it's unlikely that you'll be able to read my comment.
Either your post or your xanga site is rated Explicit. Nah, I really don't want to give out my credit card information just to read a xanga site.
You didn't enable comments for your entries! :p
Of course, I wasn't able to write back to everyone last year because sites took an eternity and a half to load on the mediocre Windows ME machine with a processing speed of 600mhz that I had.
How can I get more people to read my xanga?
There are many ways to attract more readers to your xanga, and here are some quick tips that I have for you:
Be sure to join quality blogrings that suit your interests. Don't join the many meaningless and "trendy" blogrings that have thousands of members. You're only allowed to join eight blogrings, so be sure to choose them wisely. I believe that it's better to join a closely-knitted blogring that has a few members instead of one that has many members. Blogrings were designed to help you find people who share similar interests with you, but don't be too surprised if most of them ignore you.
Don't leave "random props," chain letters, etc. when you're commenting somebody. Some people don't mind receiving "random props," but others are very annoyed by this practice. However, the few who don't mind receiving random props aren't likely to keep coming back to your site anyway.
Advertising your xanga blog in an indirect way also works very, very well. For example, if you're a frequent poster on a forum, simply add a link to your xanga blog on your signature. You'd be surprised at the number of people who will actually take the time to visit your xanga, especially if you happen to be a respected member of that community. :)
Create a button for your site and link to others. Link like crazy! If you have a button, I'll be more than happy to link to you.
Now that more and more people are beginning to use xanga trackers, some of these people are writing to anyone and everyone who visits their site. I've never engaged in this practice before, nor do I ever plan to do so, but this underhanded technique seems to be working for those who choose to use their trackers for this purpose.
If you choose to wait for people to come and visit your site, it isn't going to happen. People have to know about your xanga because most people don't even know that your blog exists. For perspective, most people don't even know that my blog exists and never will. Simply put, you have to find ways to get the word out somehow.
Also, please read my Building a successful site on xanga guide. Good luck!
Do you subscribe to everyone?
With the exception of people who write on xanga for the sole purpose of offending people, I'll subscribe to anyone and everyone who subscribes to me first. Yes, I do read my subscriptions every day, but chances are, I probably won't have time to write to you during weekdays unless you post at around 7:00 A.M. PST.
Also, if you're subscribed to my xanga and have your birthdate listed somewhere on your site, I'll announce your birthday on the randomblog bulletin on the day of your birthday. But it has to be listed somewhere on your xanga, or I won't know when it is.
Believe it or not, but some of the people who are currently subscribed to me have actually blocked me. If you have blocked me, it's impossible for me to subscribe to you, but you can still read my Wednesday blogs and anything else that I may have on my Protected list. Funny how blogging works on xanga.
What is the blog bulletin for?
The blog bulletin is a daily announcement that's shown on the header portion of my xanga blog. Special occasions, such as birthdays and holidays, are listed on the bulletin. Any changes made to my xanga will also be announced there. Daily random facts have been included on the bulletin since April 2005, so be sure to come back for a new random fact every day! I'll also update the strange news article of the moment every week or so.
Why didn't you write about _____________ on one of your blogs?
I sometimes get comments from people who think that I should've included additional information on one of my blogs. But one thing that I definitely won't do is write everything that there is to know about a particular subject. If I were to do that, my blogs would be so long that very few people would want to read them! Even then, there's still the possibility that I would've left out some other information. In fact, a partial amount of information is deleted from many of my blogs before I publish them to make sure that they are short enough to be read in less than two or so minutes. After all, you can only write so much on one post and expect people to still want to read it. :)
What will you write about next? Where do you get the inspiration to write your topics?
To be honest, I usually don't know what I'll be writing about for the week. I also understand that I'll eventually run out of things to write about. When this happens, I'll most likely have to make some adjustments to the content of my blog. My blogs will become more and more "random," and consequently, they may become less interesting to the average reader. But I'm usually willing to write about anything that is remotely interesting to people, especially if they're things that most people don't think about often. As of now, I have enough ideas to continue writing until the end of 2006, and luckily, I'm still coming up with new ideas every week!
There are a few things that I don't wish to write about at this time: controversial topics and current events. I believe that if you want to read about current events, you can either watch the news or refer to the many blogs outside of xanga that discuss such things.
As for where I get the inspiration to write my blogs, they sometimes come from random events that occur in my life. For example, House Mice, my very first blog entry to include pictures, was written after I encountered a mouse lurking in the kitchen recently.
By the way, check out the Future Blog Ideas section to get an idea of what might be written about next.
When will you update your xanga?!
My blog used to be a weekly digest, but as of January 2006, I'm updating on Wednesday mornings in addition to my usual updates on Saturday mornings. I write on Saturday mornings because Saturday happens to be the day of the week in which I have the most amount of free time. I may decide to update more than once per week sometime in the future, but my busy and somewhat lazy lifestyle currently prevents me from doing that. Hopefully, bi-weekly updates will suffice for now.
When are you changing your layout?
My blog layout is changed every month or two. However, it really isn't even a "layout change" because the colors and cursors are the only things that are actually changed. I've created every single one of those "layouts," and as you can see, I prefer plain and "default-like" layouts. If you need help with making a layout, I can't help you with that, for I am mediocre at coding myself. Sorry.
Here's a history of my layouts if you're interested for some reason:
Version 1: Blue - October 11, 2004 - January 29, 2005
Version 2: Orange - January 29, 2005 - April 1, 2005
Version 3: Gold - April 2, 2005 - May 12, 2005
Version 4: Yellowish Green - May 13, 2005 - July 9, 2005
Version 5: Deep Purple - July 10, 2005 - September 30, 2005
Version 6: Dark Orange - October 1, 2005 - December 14, 2005
Version 7: Holidays - December 15, 2005 - January 8, 2006
Version 8: Neon Red - January 9, 2006 - February 14, 2006
Version 9: Blue II - February 15, 2006 - May 25, 2006
Version 10: Orange II - May 25, 2006 - July 7, 2006
Version 11: Deep Skyblue - July 7, 2006 - present
Why wasn't my birthday listed on your blog bulletin?
The blog bulletin is updated at random times during the day, so be sure to keep checking back. If it's your birthday and you didn't see your name on the bulletin, one of the following reasons may be true:
1. You're not subscribed to my site.
2. You didn't list your birthday on your xanga when you first subscribed.
3. You haven't updated your blog for months.
4. You lied about your birthday! :/
5. Some sort of xanga bug prevented me from being able to update my site.
6. I didn't update my site at all for some reason.
7. I forgot to do it!
The Extended Q & A
Do you have a life?
As a matter of fact, yes, I do. I might even have more of a life than most people my age! I know it's easy for people to think that I don't have a life, but a majority of the things that you read on this website and on my xanga are a culmination of the things that I did whenever I was bored. Everything takes time to do and you have to have patience if you want to succeed. It's pretty obvious that I didn't build this website and write all of these blogs in one day. It's all about staying patient and correcting mistakes as you find them along the way.
Apparently, free time is also something that I seem to be having less of these days.
Are you getting paid to do any of this ****?
This is quite possibly the funniest question that has ever been submitted to me. It'd be nice if I did, but the answer is no. There are some bloggers out there who write blogs for a living, but I'm not one of them. If given the choice to write blogs for a living, I probably wouldn't do it either unless I had no other choice. But it'd be nice if I could get some sort of sponsorship from certain companies for always spreading the good word about them in so many of my blogs though. :) Anyway, one good thing about not being paid to write is that you're writing because you want to do it. You're not (literally) expecting to receive a penny for your thoughts in return.
Do you ever check your $#^&ing e-mail?
Although I didn't use to do it back then, I check my e-mail on a regular basis. Just don't send e-mail to my AOL account because I still don't feel inclined to check that mailbox with the knowledge that there are tons of spam messages waiting for me. If it's not too important, you can get a hold of me through the comments section of my xanga instead.
Are you a statistician by any chance?
No, but I did want to pursue a minor in Statistics recently. I found out that I had to take and pass three Calculus courses in addition to other upper-division courses. Needless to say, I opted out of that decision immediately instead of going through the pain of taking all those courses. However, the cards are still on the table and I might decide to minor in Statistics someday.
By the way, I've heard that statisticians have a great salary. I'd love to be paid $80,000 a year to travel all over the country to survey people and gather statistics for a living. Just kidding; I'm sure that they have to do a lot of other things, but it does sound pretty fun.