2010-03-30

tracking zip files with google analytics

http://www.google.com/support/forum/p/Google+Analytics/thread?tid=22afc1af4ca1daa5&hl=en

i also have this question. Just searched the forum and found this thread.

It seems the current situation is rather not optimal. Google probably should do something about it.
For now i think i'll just rely on plain old web server log.

here's some detail for any who might be interseted.

• according to the help page, one needs to add js code for onClick, but that doesn't track people who right click and use the contextual menu to download. This is how most people download zip/pdf etc files anyway.

• adding js code is a pain, and gets a bit complex. For example, according to the help page http://google.com/support/analytics/bin/answer.py?answer=55529 , it mentions _setAllowLinker _trackTrans() which isn't in the code, nor explaining what that is. And it also mentioned about the the order of the code should appear. I'm famiilar with js so i know the reason about the order but that's getting complex.

• For example, this means i have to add the code to every page i want to track a download file. (i have about few hundred of such download files on my site.)

• the sample code embedded js into the link, which is not clean method, may not work with many site gen systems. For my site, js is not allowed to be embedded in the html page. Rather, tag are given id or class, and js use the id to add any interactive behavior. So, this means, there's gonna be quite some non-trivial coding to get this functionality out of GA, in contrast of GA's ease of use by simple GUI.

but anyway, Google Analytics is great. The above just some extra points for thought. Thanks.

Xah ∑ http://xahlee.org/ ☄

2010-03-09

keep your hands healthy

On Mar 8, 10:52 am, Thad Floryan wrote:
> On 3/8/2010 6:53 AM, Xah Lee wrote:
> > • Why You Should Not Swap Caps Lock With Control
> > http://xahlee.org/emacs/swap_CapsLock_Ctrl.html
> > [...]
>
> It's really a preference. A person with small hands may have problems
> if the [Caps Lock] is made to be a [Ctrl], but they will have even a
> worse problem (and real pain) continuing to use the [Ctrl] key at the
> lower left of the keyboard.

yeah much of it is preference, but i think few scientific principle can still be applied to arrived at a better habit with respect to efficiency of keyboard use and ergonomic of keyboard design. Here's a few points i think are important.

• Do you touch type? Anyone programer who do not touch type yet, should consider learning it now. Touch typing is quite significant improvement in your keyboard use efficiency and hand health, much more so than the position of Ctrl key at corner vs Caps Locks position.

• Do you use a full-sized keyboard? Typing 8 hours a day on a laptop keyboard is very unhealthy. The laptop keyboard's size and key design and placement are severely restrained by the laptop size, weight, etc. If you type a lot, consider getting a full sized keyboard for your laptop.

• Here's a point that's a bit more controversial: Do you use a ergonomic keyboard? That is, the keys are curved, or split into 2 sections with a gap in the middle, each section for each of your hand. (Microsoft keyboards are the most popular of this) Arguably, it is a matter preference. However, to some degree it is a preference, but if you do prolonged typing, the ergonomic keyboard are scientifically better.

I've been touch typing since 1991, and touch typing on Dvorak since 1993, started to use emacs, and daily, since 1998. I never liked the Microsoft ergonomic keyboards or any split ones. And have strong opinions, or several reasons, against using it. I have my own habits of keeping my hand healthy, and never had any problem. Until, in 2004-2005 i was typing on laptop daily for about a year, and my hands started to have some funny feelings. This is when i decided to use a full keyboard to be plugged in to my laptop, and in the process, i decided to buy the Microsoft ergonomic keyboard. I forced myself to get used to it. Forced in physically adopting the keyboard, as well as any issues with shortcuts in emacs (i.e. remap keys if necessary). I can honestly say, that ever since i adopted the ergonomic keyboard, when i type on a straight keyboard, even just few minutes i find my hand uncomfortable.

i think the above are some important points for those who type many hours a day and is concerned about hand health and efficiency. In summary: touch type, use full keyboard, use ergonomic keyboard. Other more important issues is of course: take at least 10 min break every 2 hours, don't type yourself to death.

these points doesn't have much to do with position of Control key, but in the context of argument about better position of Ctrl key, they are much more important ones.

Xah
∑ http://xahlee.org/

my favorite keyboards

On Mar 8, 10:52 am, Thad Floryan wrote:

> The keyboard I presently use is a Unicomp:
>
>
>
>
>
> A similar keyboard is:
>
>
>
> and you can see their UNIX/Linux keyboards here with the [Ctrl] to
> the left of the [A] key:
>
>
>
> where the "Windows" key is removed and the positions of the
> [Esc] and [~] are exchanged.

yeah i've heard those before. Those are remake of the
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Model_M_keyboard

i actually happened to use the original IBM clicky keyboard on PS/2 in 1990. In was fantastic. But today, i must have ergonomic, split, keyboard.

My favorite keyboard now is:

• The Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000
http://xahlee.org/emacs/ms_keyboard/ms_natural_keyboard_4000.html

Second favorites:

• Microsoft Comfort Curve Keyboard 2000
http://xahlee.org/emacs/ms_keyboard/ms_comfort_curve_keyboard_2000.html

• Microsoft Wireless Optical Desktop Pro
http://xahlee.org/emacs/ms_keyboard/ms_natural_keyboard.html

Xah
∑ http://xahlee.org/