Struggling to decide on direction

My head is literally bursting with opinions and conversations that I feel I need to unload somewhere and I figured it would help me to write some of them down on my faithful blog, but when I start to write I just go on and on and on and on and before long I realise what I’m writing no longer reflects the initial subject I was writing about – and I just save it as a draft and forget about it.

I just read two of them now and they both end up sounding like the beginnings of some new age scripture written by some crazed anti-society nut.

Maybe that’s what I am. Hah.

Anyway, I’m going to attempt to pull bits of them together pretty soon, I probably won’t include so much of the crazy stuff, maybe I’ll post them in the future when my opinions don’t get me into trouble as much.

Internet killed the [everything] star

I often hear people talking about how “the internet has killed the high street” and to be honest, i’m getting really sick of it!

The internet didn’t kill the highstreet – they did that all by themselves!

In actual fact the high street could massively benefit from the internet if the town centre businesses started using it more to their advantage! Take Argos for example – they could have quite easily given up when the internet started picking up pace – as no one wanted their catalogs any more! But no, instead, they modified their business model and embraced the internet – now their “Click and Collect” model is being copied by Tesco, Asda and everyone else in-between.

The internet has also made things like fashion, and the ever changing face of it, more accessible to the world. People know what their favorite celeb is wearing as they see it on twitter, and if the high street stores could react as quick as online stores do – they could still be in with a chance of getting the sale. People still like to try clothes on after all!

The main issues as i see them are as follows

  • Not enough help from the councils and governments – give people free shops for 3/6/9 months and see if they can make it work. They’re all sat empty, so why not?
  • Business overheads – someone who employs 10 people cant compete with someone who sells from their bedroom – not a lot can be done to fix this apart from the bricks and mortar retailers making their offering better!
  • Being idiots – Making silly choices, bad advertising decisions and generally being crap at running a business. I have friends in business and they all do well – its because my friends are not idiots.

Financially, the economy is on the rise and things are starting to look peachy again – if you have a business idea, if you want to open a shop selling something and its burning a hole in your head – then just go for it!

What are you waiting for? :)

301 Redirects – How to redirect a website – Lots of Methods!

301 Redirects

A 301 redirect is the most efficient and Search Engine Friendly method for webpage redirection. It’s not that hard to implement and it can preserve your search engine rankings for that particular page. If you have to change file names or move pages around, it’s the safest option.

The code “301″ mean the page has “moved permanently”.

Here are some examples;

IIS Redirect

  • In internet services manager, right click on the file or folder you wish to redirect
  • Select the radio titled “a redirection to a URL”.
  • Enter the redirection page
  • Check “The exact url entered above” and the “A permanent redirection for this resource”
  • Click on ‘Apply’

ColdFusion Redirect

<.cfheader statuscode=”301″ statustext=”Moved permanently”>
<.cfheader name=”Location” value=”http://www.NEW-URL-HERE.com”>

PHP Redirect

<?
Header( “HTTP/1.1 301 Moved Permanently” );
Header( “Location: http://www.NEW-URL-HERE.com” );
?>

ASP Redirect

<%@ Language=VBScript %>
<%
Response.Status=”301 Moved Permanently”
Response.AddHeader “Location”,”http://www.NEW-URL-HERE.com/”
%>

ASP .NET Redirect

<script runat=”server”>
private void Page_Load(object sender, System.EventArgs e)
{
Response.Status = “301 Moved Permanently”;
Response.AddHeader(“Location”,”http://www.NEW-URL-HERE.com”);
}
</script>

JSP (Java) Redirect

<%
response.setStatus(301);
response.setHeader( “Location”, “http://www.NEW-URL-HERE.com/” );
response.setHeader( “Connection”, “close” );
%>

CGI PERL Redirect

$q = new CGI;
print $q->redirect(“http://www.NEW-URL-HERE.com/”);

Ruby on Rails Redirect

def old_action
headers["Status"] = “301 Moved Permanently”
redirect_to “http://www.NEW-URL-HERE.com/”
end

Redirect Old domain to New domain using htaccess redirect

Create a .htaccess file with the below code, it will ensure that all your directories and pages of your old domain will get correctly redirected to your new domain.
The .htaccess file needs to be placed in the root directory of your old website (i.e the same directory where your index file is placed)

Options +FollowSymLinks
RewriteEngine on
RewriteRule (.*) http://www.NEW-URL-HERE.com/$1 [R=301,L]

Please REPLACE www.NEW-URL-HERE.com in the above code with your actual domain name.

In addition to the redirect I would suggest that you contact every backlinking site to modify their backlink to point to your new website.

Note* This .htaccess method of redirection works ONLY on Linux servers having the Apache Mod-Rewrite module enabled.

Redirect to www using htaccess redirect

Create a .htaccess file with the below code, it will ensure that all requests coming in to domain.com will get redirected to www.NEW-URL-HERE.com
The .htaccess file needs to be placed in the root directory of your old website (i.e the same directory where your index file is placed)

Options +FollowSymlinks
RewriteEngine on
rewritecond %{http_host} ^domain.com [nc]
rewriterule ^(.*)$ http://www.domain.com/$1 [r=301,nc]

Please REPLACE domain.com and www.NEW-URL-HERE.com with your actual domain name.

Note* This .htaccess method of redirection works ONLY on Linux servers having the Apache Mod-Rewrite module enabled.

How to Redirect HTML

Please refer to section titled ‘How to Redirect with htaccess’, if your site is hosted on a Linux Server and ‘IIS Redirect’, if your site is hosted on a Windows Server.

Pointless Social Network Bulls**t

Early 2013 i decided to sync up my social world and use individual social networks for their main purpose – so for example i was gonna share all my images via flickr as thats what its for…

But less than a year later i am TOTALLY going back on my plan, and in fact i am adopting the attitude we have embraced this year at work – clear out the crap, and streamline whatever is left!

  • I am no longer gonna use Flickr to share images as their app is terrible.
  • I am no longer gonna check-in via Foursquare, as all i basically do is check-in at work, and then at costa, and repeat. I may still use this on holidays and make it more of a “where have i been in the world” network. I am no longer sharing my check-in’s to Facebook or Twitter if/when i do use it again.
  • I am totally sacking off Miso – it was fun, but no one (including myself) really needs to read about the movies i watch. If i watch a good one, ill remember it, if its crap, then i dont want to remember it.
  • I am only using Facebook for sharing photos and mini-updates of my life as the access is limited and therefore protected.
  • I will only use twitter for complaining as its totally public and customer service representatives scour it looking for you bad mouthing their companies.
  • And Google+ is to become my techie/work related social network.
  • Youtube is my TV outlet of choice and always will be.

And thats that. I wont be closing any of my accounts as i want to keep the names myself – but i wont be using them, linking to them or referencing them again on here….

Unless i change my mind in another year :)

Kitchen improvements Pt2

Wont bore anyone with pages of drivel about my kitchen – but wanted to follow my last post up with a picture of the new breakfast bar;

20131209_131154

I had to apply 4 layers of worktop oil over 4 days so we couldn’t use it for a week – but its now in use and 100 times better than the table we used to have.

That’s it for this year, we’ll decide on cupboard fronts soon so we can finish the cupboard to the right of the breakfast bar – and then tackle the rest of the kitchen! :)

Dijitul Global

The World!

Dave and I have been procrastinating about taking over the world for many years now, and we took a step closer today when we got our first customer in South Korea :)

We have also been working on some satellite websites for certain countries we would like to break into, One being Canada - we have never been but our friend Liam used to say the place was amazing, so since then we’ve been dying to visit! We have 3 customers in Canada already.

The next location is Dubai – we have a partner in Dubai that we will be working with, and hopefully establishing an actual office there at some point.

And then more recently the Netherlands – its my favourite place in the world, so fingers crossed we can build up a customer base there and me and my family can move :)

Eric Fu – Aldrich – Filthy, Dirty, Scumbag – SCAM

Anyone that knows me knows i love a bit of scambaiting – this guy really astonished me with how far he seemed to want to go, no matter how thick i laid it on.

His name is Eric Fu (apparently) and the email addresses he used were;

m.messina@upcmail.nl (initia address)  eric_f04@xd.ae (reply to address) ericfu77@5d6d.cn (second address he sent from and continued to use)

Being a web-type myself, i can only imagine that this strange email setup is to stop blocks/being added to spam lists – OR these losers are now using CRM’s and email piping to stay on top of their “Sales” – either way they were the addresses he used.

Here is the first email he sent me, not the usual massive email but it looked like someone dipping their toe in the water waiting for a reply;

1

So, me being me i replied;

2

The next email was the one you normally get first – i am posting this one in plain text so its searchable – as this is the one most people will be sent, and search for, which should help them find my site and realise its a scam.

Good Day,

I am Mr. Eric Fu, Staff of HSBC Bank (Hong Kong). I am contacting you regarding a deposit our deceased customer left without an established next of kin to the tune of Seventeen Million Two Hundred Thousand Dollars. The deceased own an account with us and he made a fixed deposit to the sum of US$17,200,000.00 in our Hong Kong branch, presently I serves as Head of Business Development, Wealth Management, Retail Banking and Wealth Management. I would respectfully request that you keep the contents of this mail confidential and respect the integrity of the information you come by as a result of this mail. I have been in charge of this department for years and to best of my knowledge, I have discharged my duty with equity.

I am contacting you so that I can give you further briefing on my intention and how to disburse the funds and estate he left behind, I discovered that both of you have a similar last name. I am prepared to place you in a position to instruct the Bank to release the deposit to you as the closest surviving relation. Upon receipt of the deposit, I am prepared to share the money with you in half. That is, I will simply nominate you as the next of kin and have them release the deposit to you. We share the proceeds 50/50.

I ask that you do not destroy my chance, if you will not work with me let me know and let me move on with my life but do not destroy me. I am a family man with wife and children; this is an opportunity to provide them with new opportunities. There is a reward for this project and it is a task well worth undertaking.

Please, again, note I am a family man; I send you this mail not without a measure of fear as to the consequences, but I know within me that nothing ventured is nothing gained and that success and riches never come easy or on a platter of gold. This is the one truth I have learned from my private banking clients. do not betray my confidence. If we can be of one accord, we should act swiftly on this.

Regards
Eric Fu.

Normal format, bla bla i am some guy who works for a bank, bla bla, dead customer, bla bla, millions of dollars bla bla…

I decided to put my best baiting hat on and get to work (ok, so at this stage i was dipping my toe too, which is evident in the length of my reply);

3

He replied, again i will post this in plain text as its likely this will be the same followup email everyone would get.

Dear Partner,
Thank you very much for your quick response to my proposal .I will like to inform you that in issues of inheritance the beneficiary can be anybody,it is not mandatory for the beneficiary to be related to the deceased, it does not even matter if you are from different countries but in this case the uniqueness in us we bring us to a perfect conclusion. the most important thing is that there must be documents to show for it,which would stipulate your status as the sole beneficiary to the funds deposited at my bank.You should not have anything to worry about, I will do everything legally required to ensure that the project goes smoothly,it shall pass through all Laws of International Banking, you have my word.The attorney will prepare the necessary Affidavits which shall put you in place as next of kin to Aldrich, he will obtain the necessary clearances from the Hong Kong authorities which will cover all the aspects involved in this transaction.
The attorney shall be handling all matters of probate on your behalf,he will have all the documents perfected, and with these documents he shall come forward to my bank to apply for the immediate release and transfer of the funds to the account you shall open.I have been a banker for many years and I know perfectly how the system works.I can assure you that you will not in any way regret in your involvement with me. We can do this if we join our hands together and work in good faith.Firstly I want to assure you that this transaction is 100% risk and hitch free and also you will need to assure me that I will have unlimited access to my 50% share once the funds has been transferred into your account because the funds is going to be transfered into your account and not mine so you are the one to assure me that you will give my own part to me. In light of the above.
I will need you to provide me with the following details.
Your Name:
Yours Address:
Your Telephone:
Please scan and email to me an identification document either passport or drivers license or a national identity card along with the required details above.
As soon as I get the information, I will also send you my identity for you to know whom you dealing with. I will have my lawyer go ahead to procure the relevant documents which will confirm you with the rights of the next of  kin to deceased Aldrich and as such I requested your information above as this documents will be documented at the probate office here in Hong Kong so as to give this venture legal backing and authenticity.Upon receipt of this information the lawyer would go ahead and procure this documents and as soon as we have secured the documents,I will help you make official application to my bank on the strength of the documents that the funds should be released to you as the bona-fide next of kin to the  deceased Immediately the document is ready and approved by my bank, it will be forwarded to the bank that is presently with the funds to release the funds to you as the bonafide next of  kin, You need not to worry as I would use my position to facilitate the approval and the subsequent release of the funds to you.I am now in contact with a foreign online bank, I now intend that you open an account in your name in this foreign bank.The money would be transfered to your account which you will open in the bank for both of us, this is the best way,I have found,it will protect us from my bank. I want us to enjoy this money in peace when we conclude,so you should listen to my instructions and follow them religiously. Also You have to know that I cannot transfer this money in my name as my bank will be aware that it is from me, this is where I need you.
As result of this,you will have to open an account in the corresponding bank. I will obtain a certificate of deposit from this my bank,it will be issued in your name, this will make you the bonafide owner of the funds. After this,the money will be banked online for both of us. We can then instruct the bank to transfer our various shares into our respective home bank accounts. I will also perfect the documentations with the assistance of my attorney to give the transaction the legal right.  looking forward to a good business relationship with you and hoping to hear from you soonest my good friend.
Regards,
Eric Fu.

Oooo got a phone number that time too! :)

I replied;

4

So im laying this on pretty thick now – hoping that at some point this guy will see the error of his ways and back away from the scam…

But no…

Hello,

Thank you so much for your response again.I got to know about you via the Hong Kong Global Database Centre (H.K.G.D.C.) and my instinct told me you are a trustworthy and potential person one can do business with. Based on that and the fact that you bear the same surname with Aldrich, I thereby wish to acquaint you with a business proposal that will be of benefit to both of us, I will give you all details about Aldrich as soon as I get the required details from you as that is when I will be convinced that you are willing to carry out this transaction with me, please understand my sincerity and do not doubt it.

Considering the money involved,it is necessary for me to be sure of the person to whom I will be entrusting this funds to,my trust is not given out lightly, I need to be convinced that you are a matured person with some integrity,and if we follow up this transaction diligently it would be completed within 7 working days.

You seem to be lacking some self confidence, but I want to assure you that you should have absolute confidence in yourself and in me as well, I am familiar with such issues of inheritance in the past with my bank, this is not the first time I have come across such an issue of a customer having died without endorsing a next of kin in his official documents, it is a simple issue provided it follows the official procedure which we have followed, it happens in a few cases not only with my bank.

What I expect from you is trust and commitment, I want this large sum of money transferred with your assistance, I shall be waiting for your response and assurance along with your full Names and Private contacts (ADDRESS & PHONE)just as they will appear on the documents to process the claims.

I want to know if you are willing to follow up this business seriously before I can give you more details about this transaction,I shall be waiting for your response and assurance.

Eric.

This guy will not give up, time to turn up the heat;

5

(i googled “old woman” and sent the first really sad picture i could find)

Yet again, he replied;

Hello,
Thanks so much for your kind intention to partake in this mutual benefits transaction can I request you to please provide me with the following information so that we can proceed. Kindly submit your full names, house address and telephone so that the lawyer will start work on the documents that will make you the benefactor of the funds.
Many thanks,
Eric.
China Passport

They don’t normally send a photo so easily – this guy is on it!

I once again turned the heat up – surely anyone would either cotton on this was a reverse-scam or at the very least their morals should kick in, right?

WRONG

He actually pushed the scam further, saying i should make contact with the bank etc!

Hello Partner,
How are you doing today?
I am in receipt of your mail ,I have found you trust worthy and given you my trust not only as a partner but a Brother,  please do not let me down, I have recruited an attorney to assist in procuring the necessary documents to facilitate the release of the funds to you and these documents will also give this project the much needed legal backing and authenticity and at this stage, you will have to make a formal application to my bank requesting that the funds be released to you as the next of kin to the late Mr Aldrich McCheekin,Below is the text of the application you are going to make, all you have to do is write the application and send it down  email to the bank.
You should endeavour to notify me as soon as you have sent the application to the Bank so that the vetting panel can convene. As I had told you before, I happen to be the Head of the private banking sector which supervises the probing and verification panel. You should know that as soon as your application is considered and approved, you are the only one that would have direct access to the funds in question and you would be expected to act in the full capacity of the beneficiary of the funds. I would be right here to monitor events from here and also give advice where necessary. All I want from you as I had said before is your total commitment to this project and prompt response to issues as they come.
I would be looking forward to hearing from you soonest my good friend.
Best regards,
Eric Fu.
NOTE: Below is the application text.
The Director of Operations,
HSBC Hong Kong,
1 Queen’s Road Central,
Hong Kong.
DEAR SIR,
APPLICATION FOR THE RELEASE OF INHERITED FUNDS TO THE NEXT OF KIN OF LATE MR. Aldrich  McCheekin.
I, – (your full name)—– SITUATED AT, (your address) NEXT OF KIN TO THE LATE Aldrich  McCheekin.  A DECEASED CUSTOMER OF YOUR BANK, HEREBY DO WISH TO APPLY FOR THE RELEASE TO ME OF AN INHERITED FUND TOTALING US$ 17,200,000.00 (Seventeen Million Two Hundred Thousand United States Dollars) PRESENTLY DEPOSITED AT YOUR BANK UNDER THE INSTRUCTION OF MY DECEASED UNCLE. I WAS NOTIFIED OF THE ABOVE INHERITANCE AS THE NEXT OF KIN TO LATE Aldrich  McCheekin. THROUGH A PROBATE ORDER OF MANDAMUS FROM THE PRIVATE BANKING DEPARTMENT OF YOUR BANK. I REFER YOU TO YOUR PRIVATE BANKING DEPARTMENT FOR PROPER BANK CO-ORDINATES AND REFERENCES OF LATE MR. Aldrich  McCheekin. IN THIS REGARD, I HAD FURTHER BROUGHT THIS TO THE NOTICE OF OTHER IMMEDIATE FAMILY MEMBERS AND I HAVE BEEN GIVEN THEIR CONSENT TO MY CLAIM OF THE FUND.I WISH FOR THE FUND TO BE TRANSFERRED VIA ANY MEANS APPLICABLE TO MY BANK ACCOUNT.
I WOULD BE GRATEFUL IF THIS APPLICATION IS TREATED IN EARNEST AND GRANTED PROMPTLY.
THANK YOU.
YOURS FAITHFULLY,
(Sign)
N.B: INCLUDE ALL YOUR CONTACT DETAILS, THAT IS YOUR TELEPHONE AND FAX NUMBERS AND ALSO YOUR EMAIL ADDRESSES SO THAT THE BANK WILL NOT FIND IT DIFFICULT TO CONTACT YOU AT ANY TIME.

I’ve never encountered a 419 scam like this before – he is so pushy, so keen – and no matter what i say he just doesn’t back away! Turned up the heat to the final notch…

7

And then it seemed to go quiet!

Did Eric finally have a moral reality check?

8

Annnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnd he’s back;

Hello Partner,

I thank you for showing some great responsibility and trust, indeed things are getting more real now. Initially I was having double thoughts about your authenticity, I needed to be careful due to the money involved and my career as a banker, but now you have proven to me that you are a remarkable person of your words. I am very happy about this, you have earned my full respect and trust, and I hope you will live up to the respect I have for you, I have attached my work ID to this email for your perusal.

Please note that I am the head of Head of Business Development, Wealth Management, Retail Banking so i will protect your application immediately it reaches my department i will approve it in your name as the bonafide owner of the funds after which my bank will contact you directly to notify you of the approval, just have the full confidence in me that no one is going to contact you regarding this issue, any investigation will go through my office. Anyway let me give you some information about Aldrich’s just for your record purpose.

Late Aldrich was born in Tübingen, Germany, on the 12th day of July,1948.
Resident at 518 Grattan Road, BD1 2NH, Bradford, England.
Date of death    25th may 2007
Cause of death:He died in a motor accident along with his family in Bradford, England.

His nature of job:  Real estate investment in Asia region including the United Kingdom and invested some his my funds in gambling,He was a very serious business minded person and also was into buying and selling of shares which appreciated for him over certain period of investment time.

In this light,I am sending you bank contact details of an offshore Bank that you are to contact and open an account in your name for you to make inquiries on offshore/on-line account opening in your name. I fully understand that this funds will be approved in your name in the next couple of days and I want us to immediately transfer the funds into this offshore account you will open so that it will not attract international financial regulators interest.

Like I adviced you earlier that you open an account with this bank in your name,immediately the funds are released from HSBC BANK in Hong Kong , they will be moved straight into your new offshore account and the transfer will not attract the attention of the monetary bodies, as the transfer be will seen as in-house.(same telex type with my Bank).You can then transfer the funds in safe bits from this online offshore account to your main account in your country. This is the best way I have figured out for us to deal and enjoy this money peacefully.

Please find below the banks information:

Santander Bank UK.
Tel: +44 207-060-9315
Fax: +44 207-060-9316
E-mail: info@satgroupintl.co.uk

I will await an update. Please do make contact with the bank by sending email so that the account opening can be fast, I had to remain awake to get the notification about this contact details, you know the time difference. Please contact the bank during UK working hours, as the bank is a UK Bank. I call you loved one so that we both understand that our trust in each other is that of blood relatives. God Bless you for your positive resolve to affect our lives. I will also advice that you call the bank immediately so that the account opening can be fast I will like to effect the transfer latest tomorrow or two days my time.

I await your urgent response.

Cheers
Eric Fu.
Tel: +85281931910

Note: I advised that you call this bank and make inquiry  about setting up the account because it is a busy and big bank, if you are unable to get them on phone, please send them e-mail

Amazing. To be fair hes probably not even reading my messages, but still, he pushed on with the scam despite me being what appears to be the unluckiest, un-healthiest person in the world.

9

One final email… I think Eric was bored and i was proving too challenging to scam – so i never got an email from him again :(

I sent this today;

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So anyone else that is contacted by Eric Fu, tell Eric to Fu off! haha  :)