Mashing up Kudos from Uptake with ClusterUrl and Amplify – Now I’m a Clogger


The good people, more precisely P.Ling, at Uptake’s Travel Industry Blog ranked me among their top 15 Hotel Blogs. Thank you P. Ling at Uptake! Alas Uptake has discontinued since.

For me a reason to look again at one of my favorite posts: Blogging Hotel Insiders. I had 40 Blogging hotel insiders. My choice was a bit wider on the one hand and a bit narrower on the other hand: I did not include some Travel Industry Blogs. In addition there are still a some to be added. So I updated my post and put it in the sidebar as one of my favorite posts.

Another Blogger used the Uptake Blog for the following snipped which I was able to retrieve via a Google link by the comment of Elliott NG:

Hotel Blogging: 15 Blogs that Attract Interest

Like every other sector, the hotel industry too has it’s own set of A-list bloggers who lead the conversation. These 15 hotel blogs and their bloggers listed here offer their readers the best hospitality experience, so to speak.

  1. Hotelchatter – Hotelchatter, along with sister publication Jaunted, is published by SFO Media, which is now owned by Conde Nast.
    Offers breaking news and genuine hotel reviews with on-location, view and anti-view posts. Hotelchatter does an excellent job of hammering new hotel openings with posts and follow-ups well before the hotel is anywhere near opening it’s doors.
  2. Hotel Check-in – USA Today blog run by Barbara De Lollis, focusing mainly on business travel and new developments in the hotel industry. Also shares plenty of hotel deals and entertaining news stories related to hotels. Hotel Check-in leverages it’s brand quite often to attract guest posts by CEO’s and senior executives from the hotel industry.
  3. Uptake Hotels blog – Very dedicated group of hotel bloggers, with plenty of reviews and tips for finding the right hotels. Color me biased, but Uptake’s Hotels blog would merit a mention on this list even if it was being compiled elsewhere.
  4. Hotel News Now – HNN is a division of Smith Travel Research, which gives this blog exclusive access to all kinds of data and insight into the latest trends and reports for the global hotel industry. It also helps to have the Managing Director, President and CEO of STR blogging for you. Very useful blog if you need the latest facts and figures for presentations or articles.
  5. Hotels Magazine – Not just a blog, but blogs – 10 of them. Each blog authored by industry experts with decades of relevant industry experience. For example, Lyndall De Marco, co-author of the Eco-Speak blog, was executive director of the International Tourism Partnership and runs a consultancy which helps clients merge profitability with sustainability. The other co-author, Ray Burger, is president and founder of Pineapple Hospitality Inc., with over 30 years of experience in the lodging industry.
  6. Hotel Law Blog – This blog is a part of the Global Hospitality Group, and again, authored by a terrific group of heavily experienced hotel lawyers led by Jim Butler and senior hospitality industry executives. If it has anything to do with hotel financing or legal issues affecting the hospitality industry, then you’ll find it here.
  7. And here we come:

  8. Three hotel bloggers who seem to have all their ducks lined up properly include Josiah Mackenzie of, the Happy Hotelier, and Guillaume Thevenot of
  9. Mention also needs to be made of two blogs – Gadling and LA Times’ Daily Deal blog – which aren’t exactly limited to hotels. It’s a compliment to these blogs and their writers that the range, quality and quantity of their hotel related content beats the offerings of many blogs which are solely devoted to hotels.
  10. You might also enjoy checking out these three ’company’ blogs – Bill Marriott’s Blog (Marriott on the Move), the Dealbase blog, and Oyster Hotel Reviews blog.
  11. And lastly, did you know about the TA hotel reviews which don’t get published? You can find them on the We Are Not Making This Up blog
  12. .

    Source: P.Ling
    Posted 3rd August 2009 by Alexandros Paraskevas


Then, thanks to @CleverClogs of Clever Clogs – what’s in a name, see below:-) – I found ClusterUrl [Update: Disconinued Since] and as a test put the 15 mentioned by Uptake in a Cluster: Top 15 Hotel Blogs and Bloggers according to Uptake.

About ClusterUrl
ClusterUrl is a simple mash up to avoid having your browser open with umpteen screens. Instead you can put them in a Cluster and refer back to the cluster and share various links with your friends or readers. For the time being I have this one published at the bottom of my sidebar.


Then Amplify [Also discuntinued in March 2012] found me and had me fiddling around with it. Now what is Amplify? It is a Multi User WordPress blog where you can dump clippings of sites you are browsing for later reading or for sharing via Twitter. It has some nifty features and it is free. So it is a ClipLog or abbreviated a Clog. As a Dutchman, or inhabitant of Cloggieland as my foreign friends tend to tease me, this new term appeals to me. From now on I’m a Clogger. Look it up! Here is my little Amplify stream.

About Amplify

Amplify was developed by the same company that created Clipmarks, based in New York City, is majority-owned and operated by its employees. Forbes Media holds a minority interest in the company. The Company’s philosophy on information sharing is comprised of three main principles: (i) people can do a better job than algorithms of filtering the massive amount of information that’s available on the web; (ii) serendipitous discovery is often more compelling than information organized by topic; and (iii) limiting the length of shared content allows people to learn about more topics than they would otherwise have time or patience for.
Amplify was created to serve the needs of two audiences that are not the focus of (i) Twitter users; and (ii) Groups.

Post Alia
Both have in common that they draw traffic away from your blog on the one hand. On the other hand it can draw traffic to your blog from the specific community….

The same problem you have with syndicating your content.

A pregnant example of problems with syndication is Uptake’s post. If I look at Technorati, it is not Uptake who links to me, but PhocusWright where they syndicated this post…although technorati is fast sliding in oblivion when it continues to behave so wobbly as it does now already for months..Apparently PhocusWright has a higher Technorati ranking than Uptake today… Nowadays WordPress uses Google for it’s track backs. So in my WP Dashboard Google gives the original track back. You see? I’ll never understand SEO….

Last edited by GJE on March 13, 2012 at 4:11 pm and added to my Internet Graveyard category

Top 25 Travel Blogs of 102 ranked according to Alexa by Frothy

Top 25 Travel Blogs of 102  ranked by a another List lover Frothy blogs [ah had to delete the link as this is another member of my category “Dead Travel Bloggers Society” which I changed into Internet Graveyard later] according to Alexa with some need to of editing by me:

Blog/Company                                                        Alexa Rank
1  on my way to where                                                           8
3  Unforgettable Sydney                                                       8
4  Travel Blog                                                                   4,804
5  iWalk, u2?                                                                   73,398
6  Newyork Traveler                                                   92,771
7 Travel, Work, Life                                                     95,688
8 The BenSpark                                                           114,277
10 Emm in London                                                    129,292
11 Life of Justin                                                           147,325
12 Travel Blissful                                                        150,557
13 Extreme John Blog                                              160,683
14 Thailand Land of Smiles                                     171,848
15 Happy Hotelier                                                      181,641
16 Mimpikami                                                              195,432
17 Traveling Mamas                                                  201,648
18 Go green travel green                                          295,621
19 The Lost Boy                                                           334,111
20 My Trips                                                                  422,798
21 Irish Taxi                                                                 452,202
22 El Rinc?n de Edy                                                   488,528
23 Justwandering                                                       497,141
24 My Itchy Travel Feet                                         504,403
25 RengBA’s Terella                                                  505,561

It immediately demonstrates the relative weakness of this measuring method,  because the first 3 mentioned here are on Blogspot which is a site with millions of blogs….There are many more Travel Blogs on Blogspot. So when you go further with this without something else to measure you will end up with hundreds of Travel blogs ranking #8…..
I’ve added the category Internet Graveyard to this post as frothy passed away.
Last edited by GJE on March 11, 2012 at 1:02 pm

2009 The Hague Sculpture – Read My Lips

2009 The Hague Sculpture _MG_0007

On Tuesday June 9, 2009 I was present at the official opening of the 2009 The Hague Sculpture exposition by the Prime Minister of The Netherlands, Jan Peter Balkenende.
First there was a opening session in one of the oldest churches of The Hague, The “Kloosterkerk” (or church of the convent). The CEO of The Hague Sculpture , The Mexican Ambassador in The Hague, a trustee of The Hague Sculpture and some other persons held speeches. The Prime Minister got the first brochure of the exposition. Thereafter the company moved outside where the sculptures of Javier Marin were installed, for the official opening ceremony.

There the company stopped at the sculpture from which I took the above photo on beforehand. In a sequence of my photo’s there was an exchange between the CEO and Xavier Marin. I have made a small “video” of this exchange, because there are too many photo’s to present them all here on the blog. Look for yourself:

Picasa Video
I’m not so much a video person. It takes far too much time for me. But this little video (without sound) I could produce reasonably quick with Picasa 3, the free Google photo (management) program. Picasa is also very good for organizing many photo’s…I have approximately 20,000 and counting on my computer, deep sigh.

The Ceremony
Then there was the opening ceremony itself: The freeing of a bundle of balloons that, of course, partially got hung in the branches of the trees over the sculptures. How dumb!

20090609 The Hague Sculpture Official Opening _MG_0153

I have experimented in telling this little story via Twitter by uploading some of the pictures to Twitpic and then putting them together in Storytlr: [ Update: Originally there was a working link here, but unfortunately the Storytlr service has discontinued since March, 2010]


Unfortunately the thumbnails of Storytlr are a bit too unsharpened to make it a nice looking story. I don’t have a mobile telephone with a camera ( I prefer better quality photo’s of ordinary cameras, but it won’t be long and then the mobiles can compete with ordinary cameras), but it is clear to me that Storytlr is a nice app to spread a life stream story.

More photos of the exhibition on Flickr
If you are interested in more photos of The Hague Sculpture, I refer you to my Flickr Sets 2009 The Hague Sculpture and 2009 The Hague Sculpture – Official Opening on June 9, 2009

PS In the meantime I succeeded to upgrade the Worpress Version of this Blog to WP 2.8, which was a hell of a job, as I tried to cut corners.

Last edited by GJE on March 21, 2010 at 2:31 pm

Photo Plugin Galore: First Try – Two 12 ft Dinghies in Love

The new WordPress 2.7 version makes it much easier to find Plugins. I had a project on my back burner for which I need a decent Photo or Gallery Plugin.

I have shown already some interest here for Yachts and Yachting. I have not divulged yet that I used to be an avid dinghy sailor and used to race dinghies as well. Alas ever since I ventured into our Hotel business, my own clinker built 12 foot Dinghy dating back from 1944, is stored safely without much attention lately. I’m even not sure my old stiff legs will be able to endure a regatta anymore.

On the original date of this post I used a plugin, Tylr Slidr enabling me to show you a couple of photos that I uploaded recently, but took in 2005 in Venice during the Biennial of 2005. There I found two Italian 12 ft Dinghies in the Arsenal. They were berthed opposite each other and were giving each other signs with lamps. It was an Art installation. A sort of act of love. Very poetic and I would never have thought of such use of two old dinghies in a basin that was used for maintenance of submarines.

The Artist, Laura Belem, born in 1974 in Bele Horizonte and working there, was able to make this installation with the help of a stipend from the Ministry of Culture of Brazil.

The 12ft Dinghy is a typical One Design Class. It was designed in 1913 by George Cockshott, an amateur boat designer from Southport, Lancashire, who won a competition organized by the Boat Racing Association (BRA). The BRA wanted a new sailing dinghy that would also serve as a yacht tender, and Cockshott’s design with its single, high-peaked lugsail fitted the bill.

It became an IYRU Dutch Class in 1914 and an International Class in 1920. It was even used for sailing competitions in the Olympic Games of Antwerp of 1920 and of Amsterdam of 1928. In 1920 they sailed on the North Sea with a lot of wind. The gold medal was won by the Dutch brothers Jan Hin and Frans Hin. In the 60ies I had the honor to sail against Jan Frans Hin – well, competing …. actually it was more of looking to his backside:-) The Silver medals were also won by two Dutchman (Van der Biesen and Beukers). In Amsterdam in 1928, on an inland lake near Amsterdam with not much wind, the medal winners were all of Scandinavian origin: 1)The Swede Sven Thorel, 2) Norwegian Henrik Robert and 3) The Fin B. Broman.

Recently we saw the International 12 ft Dingy class association being incorporated.
There are still several fleets:

  • In The Netherlands there is a fleet of over 200 active enthusiasts,
  • North Germany has fleets mainly around Lubeck and Hamburg,
  • Italy has several fleets and is very active,
  • To my knowledge there are also fleets in the UK, Japan, Switzerland and Turkey.

Dutch compete in Italy and in Germany. Japanese and Italians come to The Netherlands for a race sometimes. The class becomes more and more international nowadays, 95 years after it’s creation. Amazing huh?

I found a PDF file with 2007 draft Class rules in English at the site of an Italian Fleet.

This exercise in nostalgia was just to test this plugin and it seems to be what I needed for this post, although the loading of the whole seems a bit slow. What would you think? [Added: And sadly it didn’t work out as anticipated]

Added January 5, 2008: The next Slideshow of the same photos is as per the advice of Heather from Heather on her Travels and used by her at a slideshow of the Turtle Fountain in Rome. It loaded a lot easier, and was also very easy to copy and paste into your blog, but has not the full screen view mode as the other plugin….Thanks Heather! [Update: Unfortunately Slideshow has closed down]

Added July 14, 2009
Oops When I reviewed this article there appeared some hiccups and parts of the post including the two slide shows simply disappeared completely. Grrr recovering it from previous revisions must be done piece by piece as apparently a later update of WordPress (or the theme) seems to garble text into executable code…. done…it was the link to the Swiss fleet that did it!. Those Swiss:-)

Added November 9, 2009
Since this post I’ve had to delete the plugin. We now are waiting for the 2.9 version of WordPress, wich has been promised will handle media much better than it does prsently.

Added March 11, 2012
It appears Slideshow has closed its doors permanently as of March 6, 2012. Revisiting the site of Heather learned me she has now incorporated a Google + thingy…I’ll put this on the back burner for a while to look into it further.

Are Bloggers the Slaves of the 21nd Century?

A couple of recent articles drew my attention:

Just remembering that GTD (Getting Things Done) author and organizing yourself guru David Allen stopped blogging even before I started this Blog….

High Five (1) The one and Only