A Chat on Blab.im with James Whild from the Intervention Podcast

I was recently invited on to the Intervention Podcast by James Whild to chat technology and more. So when I saw the new video conferencing service Blab.im it would be a great opportunity to have another chat with James and learn more about him.

Blab.im is a new site, still in beta, that is getting a lot of attention. This may have been the reason for a rather patchy connection (or our wifi connections) but I was cut off at the end hence no proper ending but I still think well worth posting up the embed to see an example of a blab. The bits where I am looking most gormless is where I can not here or see James but it is recorded on the blab.

As well as embedding the Blab, as above, you can also download the audio and/or the video. I downloaded the audio so I could upload it to Soundcloud and embed below:

What would you business look like if you did what you said you were going to do?

Everything Is AwesomeInspired by Karen Strunks Big Daring Blog Post Challenge! I am writing a post that I am hoping will be me pushing myself out of my comfort zone.

Last week at an excellent workshop on email marketing I was challenged by Randy Tate (as was everyone else in the room) as follows:

“What would your business look like if you did everything you said you were going to do in the next 12 months”

My instant, and possibly glib, response to this was “Well it would look awesome!” (there’s the Lego Emmet reference)

But for me, as I would think for many business owners, the question deserves some focus so again – What would your business look like if you did everything you said you were going to do?

I then thought well I do not know what my business would look like but I know the rest of my life would look pretty shocking! I mean if I did everything I said I was going to do, in business, I would have no time for friends or family let alone myself!

Why do I think this?

The only sensible conclusion is that I clearly ‘say’ that I am going to do far more than I actually have time to do. I am either agreeing to things or over committing. Possible reasons:

I’m not good at saying no – like many I like to please others. I think that some people genuinely want to help others and say yes before thinking it through properly. For me I know my default answer to nearly everything can be yes.

I want to do lot’s of things in my business. I think I have lots of good ideas but lack the time and sometimes the skills to implement them. Strangely I am not the best person to do all things for my business. Even where if I was the best person to do all of these things it is probably not always the best use of my time.

So what is the solution for me. Well as per the title I am committing myself to these, and more, for the next 12 months:

  1. Say No. Make no my default when asked to do something extra with my time. Saying this, I want to say no properly meaning don’t just say no but explain why – it is a no and hopefully make a suggestion that could help such as who may be better placed to help.
  2. Commit to my yes’s and my intentions
  3. Commit only to things that I know are important – if they are not important to me why am I committing to them
  4. Have an ideas book – where items go in that are just good ideas that I can review regularly to see if they make the commit list
  5. Do less things but do them well
  6. Delegate tasks to employees and or virtual staff
  7. Commit to so everything on my list that I commit to.i.e. Do everything you say you are going to do.

If you want to continue the conversation please join me on Twitter – @philoakley

Make Google Maps on a WordPress site Mobile Friendly

If it was ever in doubt Google have confirmed the importance of making your website mobile friendly by announcing that being not mobile friendly will directly and adversely affect you Google ranking. If you are in doubt about your site being mobile friendly or even if you are not in doubt test your site here.

While recently updating my contact page on OutserveWeb I was reminded that Google can cause issues as well when I embedded our Google Map. It would appear that iframes usually have a fixed width so can be very mobile-UNfriendly as an embed like below which will have a set width of 600.

The solution of course is CSS as I found on a Smashing Magazine post here by Rachel McCollin.

The answer being to add to your stylesheet this CSS for restricted width devices. If you are running a WordPress website I would recommend updating the code in your WordPress child theme.

.google-maps {
    position: relative;
    padding-bottom: 90%; // (450 ÷ 500 = 0.9 = 90%)
    height: 0;
    overflow: hidden;
.google-maps iframe {
    position: absolute;
    top: 0;
    left: 0;
    width: 100%;
    height: 100%;

And then wrap your iframe code in the div class like so:

<div class="google-maps">
<iframe src="https://www.google.com/maps/embed?pb=!1m14!1m8!1m3!1d2411.0515267560027!2d-2.1132429999999998!3d52.821435!3m2!1i1024!2i768!4f13.1!3m3!1m2!1s0x0%3A0x641984241f5d6c31!2sOutserveWeb!5e0!3m2!1sen!2suk!4v1430667922769" width="600" height="450" frameborder="0" style="border:0"></iframe>

The General Election 2015 – all the main parties on Twitter

After my post for all of the Twitter accounts for all of main party leaders I have put below a list of all of the main parties and their Twitter accounts:

Liberal Democrat Party

Conservative Party

Labour Party

Green Party

UKIP Party

Plaid Cymru

SNP Leader

The General Election 2015 – All the Main Party Leaders on Twitter

After following all of the main party leaders on the big ITV 7 way debate you may want to continue to follow then on twitter. Not much debate and more electioneering:

Nick Click – Liberal Democrat Leader

David Cameron – Conservative Leader

Ed Milliband – Labour Leader

Natalie Bennett – Green Party Leader

Nigel Farage – UKIP Leader

Leanne Wood – Plaid Cymru Leader

Nicola Sturgeon – SNP Leader

What I learnt from the big ITV political debate

What I learnt from last nights big ITV political debate is that I do not like big TV political debates. For me they are actually quite boring and offer little in any substance to the key issues. Other thoughts:

  • Clearly all leaders are very well media trained addressing cameras, audiences and referring to questioner’s names no doubt as they are told to. But for me this all comes across as fake and contrived rather than sincere.
  • Not much new to learn about policies or what might happen in a hung parliament
  • As you would expect much criticism of each others party and policies with Nick Clegg kick off the debate going straight for his ex coalition partner David Cameron

What it did tell us though is that the political landscape has changed and now more than ever minority parties have a voice and a platform and can play an active role in the running of our country. Hearing and understanding the views of minorities has to be a good thing but how it will affect running a country in a coalition will be interesting to see.

The programme should be easily accessible on catch up services etc but I have embedded the Youtube video below. For some reason ITV have not been able to start the programme at the beginning of the video so it starts at 12:22 so scroll along:

For the Youtube generation who can not watch a full 2 hours of this the BBC have some nice highlight videos just click the key video button after you click on the image below:

Summary and hight light videos on BBS
Summary and hight light videos on BBS

As the debate did not really hold my attention I did look at the tweets with the hashtag #leadersdebate and although more entertaining than the programme, with of course some funny jokes, the twitter coverage was mostly critical and cynical just like the programme. A quick embed of the top tweets below, as per the twitter algorithm and of course there were many tweets.

The General Election 2015

The General Election in the UK officially started yesterday with the dissolution of parliament and the countdown to polling day, May 7th, begins.

With the race being so close this time, between Conservative and Labour it may be the most interesting ever (or of course the most boring depending on your point of view). It could also be the most confusing with the myriad of options of possible majorities, coalitions and minority governments.

Although I am not looking to turn my blog political I thought it would be interesting to regularly post something to help me keep up with different parties and campaigns. Following the election timetable I will try and comment as we go along.

I will also be following the General Election on social media on especially Twitter.