Blog on Blogging


Q:What is a blog? Is it a noun? A verb? A hybrid blue dog? 

A: All of the above, well, minus the dog.

 

It’s something that many writers used to abhor, and now adore. Essentially, it’s a hosted website where visitors see a stream of regularly updated posts authored by you, the owner/user of the blog. 

This includes pictures, essays, one liners, links, and whatever the site’s owner desires. 

You say, “Well, I have a lot of awesome thoughts and pictures and memories that I’d love to share with the world! How can I start my own blog?” Lucky for you, Socket’s got your back. We’re going to tell you all about the top blog platforms and where to begin.

Two of the most widely used platforms for blogging are Blogger and Wordpress.

 

Blogger

Blogger is a great platform, and one of the multitude of free services offered by Google. It’s an easy start for those without much technical knowledge.

The main advantages to using Blogger are the absolute no upfront investment, including templates, storage, search engine optimization (SEO), and the ability to use custom domain names.

Unfortunately, social media cannot be integrated into a Blogger blog, and Google could potentially shut it down without notice if it desires.

 

Wordpress

Wordpress.com is as well known and widely used as, if not more so than, Blogger. One of the best things about Wordpress is its versatility and the availability of third-party support. Wordpress has a copious amount of plug-ins, widgets, templates, etc. that work natively with the program.

As with Blogger, Wordpress allows users with limited technical knowledge to easily manipulate their site, while still providing more advanced users with a powerful tool for editing. 

Wordpress plays nicely with social media and has a very high level of security. This community is backed by more than 720,000 visits per month from users and developers.

Lastly, Wordpress also has a counterpart, Wordpress.org, that is a versatile platform for self-hosted sites, and allows easy migration of content from other Wordpress sites.

With these awesome features come a few drawbacks. Namely, you cannot use a custom domain on a free site hosted on Wordpress.com (though you can on Wordpress.org), and the platform does not allow running ads (with a few exceptions, so monetizing the site is less of an option.

 

Weebly and Other Blog Services

Relatively new to the scene of blogs and websites is Weebly. Since its inception, it has been hailed as the easiest way to build any blog or website. With drag-and-drop options, free templates for both blogs and personal sites and eStores or commercial sites, the platform continues to be a standout performer.

Weebly also offers its own analytics software, making it easy for virtually anyone to manage their site’s stats. Pages are also resized automatically into mobile versions.

Aside from these top options, you’ll find a host of other services with equally capable platforms that can be used for your needs. Sites such as Livejournal, Tumblr, and more have tailored platforms for each specific user base, so you’ll find something perfect for you.

Got Fiber?


The Fulton Street Fair was this past weekend, June 21-22, and Socket was there demoing our fiber broadband and getting to know the people of Fulton!

We had demonstrations in our booth with Netflix streaming, a few iPads for people to come by and play with, as well as a phone charging station for when devices got low. For visitors who were as impressed as we were with fiber, and just had to sign up, we gave them a free “Got Fiber?” T-shirt!

If you didn’t get a chance to come by, check out our fiber page for more information about the various plans and to check availability at your address.

We also had representatives there to help answer all of the questions regarding coverage and what’s been going on with our fiber project. They walked visitors through the different offerings at each location while explaining the differences between our various services.

We’re really excited to be bringing fiber to more rural areas. So be sure to check our coverage map to stay up-to-date on availability in your area!

Oops! Almost forgot! We have a treat for you as well.

Come see us at the Fulton Street Fair!


The Fulton Street Fair is this weekend, June 21-22, and Socket will be there to answer all of your questions about what’s been going on with our Rural Fiber Project!
  
We’ll have folks on hand to help you find out if you're in our fiber coverage area, learn what packages are available, tell you what to expect during the installation process and more. If you sign up at the event (or if you're already one of our fiber customers) we'll even give you a free t-shirt (while supplies last).
  
You can test-drive the fiber on tablets at our booth and enjoy free Wi-Fi at the event. We'll also have a phone charging station in case your devices get the dreaded "low battery" indicator.
 
We hope to see you there!
  
 

 

Socket Superheros!


American Red Cross
 
Summer is a particularly slow time for blood banks. The college students leave town, and the high schoolers who got out of class to donate are no longer in class. The Red Cross makes a big push to help make up this deficit, and Socket helped out!

"I donate blood as a way of being a good steward of the blessings I have received," says Vicki Winton. 
 
This week, those of us at Socket participated in a blood drive to get donations for the Red Cross. We had the drive in our building’s conference room, receiving 17 donations!
 
Thanks to everyone who came out and donated their time and blood!

Streaming Video 202


As promised, we wanted to follow up on our last post about streaming video. We’ve compiled a list of the top five most commonly used Video Streaming Services. Each site has been broken down based on a number of categories to give you some more information.

The name's Smith. Jeff Smith, Accounting Manager.


Every month, Socket’s employees nominate a co-worker for the You-Make-The-Difference award. Jeff Smith, was chosen as the YMTD Winner in May.
  
“Jeff is always available to deal with anything thrown his way,” said a nominating co-worker. “He deals with the problem quickly, accurately and always with a smile.”
 
Jeff has been working at Socket for two years. As accounting manager, some of his duties include leading general ledger activities, preparing various financial reports and statements, and performing necessary analysis of company financials, including special projects and internal audits.
 
Some of his favorite Socket memories are the infamous Christmas Parties and Fish Fry outings. He is also famous for his winning hit in the last inning of the team’s recent softball game.
 
When he isn’t crunching numbers or playing softball, Jeff enjoys video games and relaxing. He’s also added “studying for the CPA exam” as a new hobby, as it has become a new daily activity. He has passed the first half of the exam and hopes to finish the rest by August.
 
Thanks for everything you do. Congratulations, Jeff!
 

FADC Callaway Open 2013


On Friday, June 7th, Socket participated in the Fulton Area Developers Corporation (FADC) Callaway Open.
 
The event was put on by FADC as a fundraiser to benefit development in Fulton and surrounding areas.
 
The event was held at the Tanglewood Golf Course in Fulton, and Socket sent some of its own to compete. Our team was made up of Steve Bremer and Zeke Long, along with two Callaway Hospital employees, Allen Aufderheide and Chuck Baker. Callaway Hospital is a big fan of our Hosted Phone Business System (formerly HPBX).
 
At the end of the day, our team had the highest score! (Note: the lower the score in golf, the better) “Zeke was supposed to be our ringer, but he had an off day,” joked Steve.
 
“Steve only needs 3 clubs; Driver, 6 iron, and putter, and they’re all interchangeable,” Zeke shot back.
 
In spite of this, the guys had a great time! The weather was great, and Chuck had a nice long-distance putt that went in.

Alexis in Golf Cart

While Steve and Zeke tried to keep it on the fairway, Alexis Hildebrand drove the Socket Beverage Cart around, making sure all participants were well-hydrated.

Socket Participates in Mid Missouri Soap Box Derby


For the fourth year, Socket has sponsored a car in the Downtown Optimist Club’s Mid Missouri Soapbox Derby. This year, Socket was one of the top sponsors alongside other local businesses such as Veteran’s United.
 
Socket’s Soap Box was designed by Tia Stratman and Eleanor Tiefenbrun and was driven by Michael Connon. The effort was headed by Socketeer Josh Connon, Crew Chief.
 
Josh and Michael got interested in the Derby when Michael was only eight years old. At the time, a co-worker had broached the idea to Josh about a Socket team. After gathering some more information, Josh spoke with Socket co-owner Carson Coffman about sponsoring a car.
 
Fast-Forward four years. It’s Sunday. June 9th. Michael is in the zone; hands on the wheel, head bent forwards. And they’re off. Neck-and-neck, fender-to-fender, the cars battle it out on Broadway, between 7th and Providence. As the race comes to a close, Michael launches past the finish line, placing 5th out of 18 participants in the Super-Stock division.
 
Congratulations Michael and Josh! 

More Callaway County Residents Can Now Sign Up For Fiber Broadband


We're now accepting fiber orders and pre-orders in even more pSocket Fiber Project Maparts of Callaway County!
  
Check out our recently updated project map for updates on construction and order dates. All residents in the project area west of US Hwy 54 can now order service and schedule installations.
 
Enter your address on our website to see if you're in our fiber coverage area. If you are, you can also place an order or pre-order on our website.
 
Even if you're not in our coverage area, enter your address on our website or give us a call at 1-800-762-5383 to tell us you want fiber in your area. This will help us determine where we should expand in the future.
 
As always, give us a call at 1-800-762-5383 or visit www.socket.net/fiber to learn more about Socket's Rural Fiber Project.
   

Save the date: Pepe’s of Columbia brings Mexican Cuisine to Socket


What date? June 20th, 2013
What time? 11am-12pm
Where? Socket Telecom, 2703 Clark Lane.
 
Pepe’s of Columbia is one of the hottest things this side of the border! It’s so hot, we barely were able to pull Pepe away from his loyal customers to come directly to Socket and serve up some of his mind-blowing Mexican creations!
 
That’s right! You heard it first here: Pepe’s will be at Socket on June 20th from 11am-2pm. Now, trust me, I know how excited you are to hear this news.
 
Until then, he’s going to be doing his best to make some of the best food your diet’s seen in weeks! We know you can hardly wait, and we’re right here with you. Join us for some fun with good food and feel free to bring family and friends!

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Who is Socket

Founded in 1994, Socket is a Missouri-based telephone and Internet service provider with the largest service area in the state.

Socket is a privately held company that provides families and businesses a choice for local and long-distance phone and Internet service. We combine the highest quality customer service with in-depth technical knowledge.

Our network serves more than 20,000 residents and businesses in more than 400 Missouri cities, and our customers enjoy simple billing and quick, friendly service.
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