1000 Articles and still growing

Targetwoman – the major genuine information portal for women  has  notched up its 1000 articles  this week. In fact, we have crossed over to about 1005 articles with today’s publication of Antique Furniture article.

We have covered almost all the topics – a woman would be interested in – women health, beauty, apparel, shopping and managing money to name a few. We have spent a fortune  in researching, collating and writing out the articles. All our team members have slogged for day and night to achieve this land mark. I must specifically thank my able colleague – the Webmaster and the Chief Editor without whose complete dedication and sacrifice, this would not have been possible in such a short time.

Many sites, literally thousands of sites have linked to our articles which shows our popularity.

Thank you – our Readers and our loyal visitors. We will toil hard to make your visit genuinely worth your while !

Adding Links in Directories

After the holiday season, it is back to the nose at the grinding wheel again…

One look at the number of submissions waiting at the Targetwoman women directory made me cringe at the prospect of wading through literally thousands of them. We have a few volunteer editors who patiently look up the sites in the submitted list and check out whether they are appropriate for inclusion.

Now a bit of statistics is in tune with the subject we are discussing. We have over the past couple of years built up around 6000 links under 10 broad categories and 46 sub categories. This – you would say is paltry addition compared to some of the other directories which add just about the same in about a month.

We have always maintained that we are not looking at the numbers here in our directory. Our ratio of acceptance to submission is about 1:75

Many send us some very complimentary messages ( and not so complimentary messages as well) through the submission form.  I reproduce below some of the subject lines here:

“Very informative and well designed website.”

“Your site was very helpful to me. Thank you. ”

“May God Bless you for the excellent information you offer in your pages ! ”

“Really enjoyed your site. I’ve bookmarked it for future reference. ”

“Your site is very convenient in navigation and has good design ”

Thank you all for the bouquets ( and also for the well intentioned bricks).

I spent almost about 3 hours just to filter out the spam from the list and mark the categories to forward them to appropriate editors. It is not such a pleasant experience for the Volunteer editors to go through grotesquely mangled submissions and as a result, the onus falls on me to sort the list.

Until we come up with a better technological solution to this, the editors or someone has to manually sort the large  volume of submissions.

Fuzzy Logic and Directory Submission

The definition of fuzzy logic might appear as fuzzy to most, but fuzzy logic forms the basis of control parameters from your washing machine to making movies like Lord of the Rings. We are not going to look too closely at the mathematical fuzzy sets and their operations as developed by Prof. Lofti Zadeh.

What we will see in this blog instead is how the concept of fuzzy logic helps us to submit more effectively to internet directories. To start with, let us chip away the theory bit from this logic and view things in a practical light.

In microprocessor-controlled appliances/applications, you cannot define all variables with precise quantities all the time. You need to allocate certain parameters as dependant on other variables, which will loop back to the earlier ones. Things are not always in black and white – some can come in shades of grey too. Accept this and factor in these in to your overall scheme of things.

That sums up albeit briefly what the fuzzy logic is all about in simple terms. Your washing machine’s microcontroller chip ‘estimates’ the load quantity and calculates the resources (water, detergent and additives if any) based on sensors. It decides the best washing option using fuzzy logic and issues commands to electrical components accordingly.

Fuzzy Logic plays a major role in computer software too. Most of the applications in real world will need to adjust to real world situations. The software must factor in unknown and unpredictable situation in order to be stable. For example, our own Athena health engine uses pattern recognition and uses past accumulated data to arrive at the essence of what the user wants.

Some of the techniques and logic used in many computer algorithms are too fuzzy to be described as anything but fuzzy.

Most webmasters know that getting quality IBLs (inbound links) is essential to make their sites visible in the search engines. To some extent, it also adds to the traffic as you get thematically grouped links under each category. By their own right, many niche directories offer decent amount of targeted traffic to the sites linked.

Most would also know that it takes quite an investment in terms of the time needed to identify, read the guidelines, search for the right category and submit your site. However, always some who look for a quick way out of this. There is no short cut to this process of directory submission. The bottom line is the editor of the directory goes through a painful process of weeding out thousands of spam submissions every day. For a volunteer editor, this unfortunately takes away the time required for editing and adding many useful submissions.

All editors of human edited directories face this problem. Targetwoman directory gets a ton of useless submissions everyday. Unfortunately, the few tens of useful, carefully submitted genuine websites are drowned out in the sea of spam.

A singular solution to the long-suffering editors needed to be found and someone suggested that some fuzzy logic concept is roped in for this. So we decided to implement a bit of this into our ‘add URL’ page.

The whole idea itself is a bit fuzzy. It is all based on our observation of so many thousands of spam submissions.

Point No.1 – A typical spam submitter hardly ever reads the submission guidelines. Many people embed a hidden secret word somewhere in the copy of the submission guideline as is commonly done by some Awards site.

But it takes more time to hunt for the word for the normal genuine submitters.

Point No.2 – A typical spam submitter almost always submits many URLs at the same time. So send the submission page to limbo when the page is loaded with more than one URL.

Point No.3 – A typical spammer types or copies and pastes several lines in the description column. Raise a red flag if such signs are detected for any other column.

Point No.4 – Another trick of a spammer is to type superlatives. Our guidelines strictly forbid using hyperbole or superlatives in the description. Most directories edit out your descriptions if they contain marketing hype. So raise a flag if this point is detected as well.

Point No.5 – Some spammers test the water by submitting gibberish at first. Good thing is check for gibberish.

So we will implement all the above points in the scripts handling the directory submission as soon as we make sense of the logic which is so fuzzy.

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