While the title says “non-Diggers”, this really applies to anyone who would visit this blog and say “what’s SEO stand for?”
I find that very smart people are very confused about a wide array of technology-related items. Here are the 10 I hear most often:
10 — The Wii Remote needs to see the screen!
In some cases, yes. In most cases, no. I’ve had friends try to point the remote at the screen so it’ll accept a button press, and you’ve had friends do it too.
When you’re moving the cursor around on the screen, it needs to be able to see the bar above (or below) your TV. If you’re in the middle of a game of Mario Kart, it doesn’t care where that little bar is or who is standing in the way.
9 — The iPhone is the most advanced phone ever!
The iPhone is great. I have it, I love it. It’s slick and it works well, but it’s missing a ton of very basic features. I traded an N95 to get my iPhone. The iPhone has a much worse camera, no built-in video capture, a worse battery life and no MMS. Throw in things that it should have (like copy-and-paste) and it looks even worse.
That being said, it’s still the best phone I know for e-mail and browsing, and that’s my main concern, but it’s got serious weaknesses that other phones don’t have.
8 — The government has a live version of Google Earth.
I spend a lot of time on various Google Earth sites, and I’ve found that many people that wonder if Google Earth imagery is in real-time. When they find out it isn’t, they’re sure that the govenment has access to it. No. Trust me.
While I think that real-time imagery in a product like Google Earth will be here someday, I’m pretty confident that we’ll be in the 2020′s before that happens.
7 — Sites at the top of Google paid to get there.
They’re not talking about the paid listings; they mean the organic ones. “You know you can pay Google and they’ll give you a boost, right?”
While there are ways you can pay to possibly move up (paid links), slipping Google some cash under the table won’t do it. If they were found to be manipulating the organic results for some kick-backs, that could be the end of Google as we know it.
6 — Macs can’t get viruses
Macs are so much better than PCs because they can’t get viruses, right? Wrong. In fact, some studies have shown Macs to be more vulnerable to attacks than Windows machines. The main issue seems to be a lack of market share, and thus a lack of incentive for evildoers to attack the Macs.
On the other hand, every year we hear that “this year Macs will start to get attacked” because of their growing market share, and yet it never pans out. Still, people that think Macs are somehow “virus-proof” are idiots.
5 — “Hits” are the best measure of a website
As soon as a I hear someone tell me how many “hits” they’re getting on their website, I know I can tune them out. While hits are a technically accurate measure, they don’t mean what most people think they mean.
For example, our church website got over 12 million hits last year. Amazing! Not really. that was only 115,000 visitors and about3 million pageviews. Certainly nice numbers, but nothing like the 12 million hits. When you load a page, every element on the page (images, JS calls, external stylesheets, etc) create a “hit” on the server. Thus, one visitor looking at one page could easily generate a dozen hits on a site.
4 — I’m “on” the website right now
While this is somewhat beginning to change, it’s still not accurate. When you pull up CNN, your computer downloads the HTML, images, etc, shows them on your screen and disconnects from the site. When you click to another page, your computer reconnects, grabs the HTML/images from that page, and then disconnects again.
You’re never “on” a site — you’re just pulling each page to you.
3 — My identity isn’t safe online
Many people think that just by pulling up a website, your identity can get stolen. I suppose with the right spyware on your machine it could happen, but it’s unlikely. The majority of identity thefts occur when people simply give away their info in a phishing scheme.
You can say your identity got “stolen”, but the truth is you gave away to them.
2 — My computer might catch a virus
Viruses are big news, but really are fairly rare. Many people think of comptuer viruses like human viruses, in that you can just “catch” one. You can’t. You need to download an infected file, open an infected e-mail, or visit an infected site with your unpatched browser.
If you keep your PC up to date and you’re not stupid, the odds of being infected with a virus are close to zero, even with out A/V software installed.
1 — Google searches the internet
This is the one I hear the most often. The truth is, Google doesn’t search the internet. It can’t. It is impossible for you to search the internet.
Google simply searches a copy of the internet that they store on their servers and update as often as possible. This creates the illusion of them searching the internet, and it’s a system that works very well.
What other crazy things do you hear from your semi-technical friends?