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Seattleite patronizing Portland again

January 28, 2007 at 01:01 AM | categories: Portland, Blogging, General | View Comments

I enjoy reading 360digest when I get a chance. Not only is my brother-in-law Dave a newly-minted real estate agent but the house next door was up for sale for a while recently. Real estate is one of those things that we all have to deal with, because we all need a place to live.

Anyway, I was amused to read that on the blog this quote:

In Portland, Ore., $300,000 means a clean and simple floating home on the Pacific ocean

Ummm, it would not be a clean and simple home. Because the Pacific Ocean is 90 miles away from Portland, which is on the Columbia and Willamette rivers.

100 years ago, Portland was a more significant city than Seattle because of those rivers. It was simply easier to float things up and down the rivers than to try to move them across land. With trucks and interstates and container ships, that’s changed significantly. Now it’s important to have deep water and make it easy for big ships to navigate into docks as quickly as possible. So new Portland is “little sister” to Seattle. Which never lets us forget it. :-)

Testing MyPages linking

January 28, 2007 at 01:01 AM | categories: Portland, General | View Comments

We’re experimenting with linking back to blogs who reference a business on For example, a business that listed itself recently was Hammy’s Pizza. It’s in the Portland Pizza category.

Amazon Customer Votes Promotion

November 24, 2006 at 11:11 AM | categories: Portland | View Comments

Found a reference to Amazon selling 1000 Xbox 360s for $100.  Which is what one would be worth to me.  So I showed up and tried it, figuring that I wasn’t going to get one of these: However, I was interested in how the process worked and also wanted one of the alternate items.   I was logged in to my Amazon account on both Internet Explorer 7 and FireFox 2.  Things worked fairly normally until about 10:59, when the system became totally non-responsive for about 10 minutes and not very responsive (meaning I got 1 session to work but none of the others) for 15.

I was disappointed that Amazon didn’t have something showing on the screen.  On the one hand, that might add to the problem of not being able to respond.  But on the other, it seems like they could have sent a large image to folks saying that they hadn’t won.  Why large?  To stop people from being able to hit refresh quickly.  

Guess I don’t as much about the intricacies of TCP/IP as I think I should.  I’m not sure what’s possible - limiting sessions to one per IP # to stop people from opening multiple tabs, etc.  Maybe Amazon was doing that.  But having the browser time out without any feedback over and over was frustrating.  The first two times it was OK - “yeah, there must be a lot of people doing this” - but then it was “Wow, they need to plan better”.

Relevance to local businesses?  Well, there is some, actually.   If I were running an antique store, there would be various ways of using my display case.  I could put items on the floor and post ads as I did so.  Certainly that would seem to be the efficient thing to do.  But in terms of promotion, you could get a two-fer:

  • Put items out on the floor during the week or over the weekend
  • Add items to your display case only one day a week

What do you get out of this?  Well, the people who are going to stop by without knowing what you have are going to stop by.  No disadvantage to them.  And the people who only come when you have something interesting to them will check your stock once a week.  Now if you don’t have anything that they like, they’re not coming in.  But wouldn’t you rather have them checking on you?  Making it a part of their routine?

The alternate item on Amazon?  No, it’s not for me.  It’s probably for my “plain 4″ daughter, though it might end up going to the one who’s “2 and 3/4″. 

Nice to see MyPages revisions

August 18, 2006 at 08:08 AM | categories: Startups, Portland | View Comments

It’s good to see that MyPages is changing to be more interactive.
Portland Yellow Pages and Portland, OR Guide by » Blog Archives » Hello again, Portland!

Something neat is the ability to link to specific businesses:

BodyAware Massage -

Rose Festival Time … and people are being jerks.

June 09, 2006 at 06:06 AM | categories: Portland | View Comments

As a native Portlander, there’s a little bit of a thrill every time the Rose Festival starts. Every June, it’s a celebration of living in Portland.

There are 3 parades but the Grand Floral Parade is the big one. It’s a Portland tradition that people tape out space on the sidewalk to sit or stand and watch the parade go by. And people basically respect those pieces of tape.

What seems a little ridiculous, though, is companies like Azumano Travel taping out the sidewalk in front of their offices, the restaurants next door and then taking half a block across the street. You might think that people would think that was excessive and ignore it … which is why Azumano has a security guard patrolling “their turf”.

Hmmm. I’ve bought tickets from Azumano before. There are times it’s nice to deal with a person rather than a computer when things change. Even if it does cost extra. But this is not very nice.

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