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Facebook Friends

1 West Bromwich Manor House

Here in the Black Country we have traditions and one of those traditions is to take no notice of strange behaviour. We’re all a bit weird. There are many races and many cultures and the politically correct people call it a multi-cultural community. There has always been a diversity. (more…)

The Review: Setting up a blog

1 1 Holloway Bank

The Black Country isn’t the prettiest place to live or take photographs, but I manage and get a lot of interest in my photography. So if you’re blogging adding pictures to your words, can get the message to your readers across a lot more effectively and you don’t really need fancy equipment for online photographs. (more…)

Touching the world via Skype and social media

Wednesbury South

I use Skype and social media a lot. I get to know people in exotic places and chat via Skype and we share snippets of our lives through the social media of Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. I think it gives me a broader outlook on life; a valuable diversity… (more…)

Wednesbury Historians Christmas Party

Merry Xmas sepia

Yes, it was the History of Wednesbury Christmas Party last night. I can’t remember how long the Facebook Community page has been running now. It does have over 3,000 ‘likes’ and is organised by Tia-Marie Byrne who just had her name added to the Wednesbury page on Wikipedia as ‘notable native/resident’. She does the research and the rest of us try to rely on our memories.


Darlaston | preserving images of industrial history

Darlaston factory

I have started photographing old buildings so we have some nostalgic reminders in years to come of our industrial past. I suppose even modern buildings will be interesting, they don’t last like they used to. I found this factory interesting and there are other buildings, like the fire station, that are interesting too. This was in Darlaston in the West Midlands, otherwise affectionately known as Darlo!


Engaging social media

Social media sites like Facebook and LinkedIn have become an important part of people’s lives. The profiles on these sites are like your front garden, they say something about you. LinkedIn is like the office and having a professional looking profile sends out a message to others about your professionalism. Your Facebook Timeline also says a lot about you. You should be careful what you post there.


Improving your Facebook Timeline

A landscape

I chose this picture as a Facebook Timeline picture because it has open sky where I can add text. I had a lot of water too, but a timeline picture has to be wide and not very high. You can take a photo and crop it to make it the right shape. Facebook does allow you to position it. You can then add text.


The potential of Facebook Timeline


I cropped the above picture to make it suitable as a cover on my Facebook Timeline. If you want a Timeline that looks good, I think photos are essential and most people have a digital camera. Windows live Photo Gallery is good for editing and free. It seems that Facebook is a better site for dating than the dating sites now and so a good Timeline can even improve your love life! (more…)

Facebook Timeline


I have published my new Facebook Timeline! Cool. I have now got a profile picture, a header and lots of photographs on my page. You can take a look by clicking my Facebook ‘badge’ in the sidebar  >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

There is also a page and video on Facebook telling you all about it, click here. (more…)

A Monday ramble…

Great Bridge 001


I’m tired of rain and dull days, but now winter is fast approaching I have to think of some different camera settings to get decent photographs. This photograph is of the local lake or pool and the colours will begin to change now as leaves fall from the trees and we get more red and yellows in photographs. I’m not looking forward to winter but last years photographs of the snow were quite good. (more…)

New domains

THE LAKES - 19 JUNE 2011 005

(Reuters) –, learn to.salsa, glossy.lipstick — people and companies will be able to set up a website with almost any address by the end of next year if they have a legitimate claim to the domain name and can pay a hefty fee.

It costs $185,000 to register for one of the new domains (typical…). I want Blogging.4U or maybe Art.4U. I want all of them. Maybe it would be worth $185,000 for all of the .4U extensions. I think big companies will snap them up and add the cost to their products. Watch out for television.coke bought by Coca Cola and I’m sure they are scheduling meetings to decide on others. They could ask me to think of some and write a report! I’m so cheap!

Smile with tongue out (more…)

The Secrets of Success

Success means following many small steps. One step at a time.

The secrets of success

“Be a dreamer; for a dreamer is one who can find his way by moonlight and then see the dawn before the rest of the world.”- Oscar Wilde

I would like to thank Robin and Judy for bringing that quote to my attention. They started following me on Twitter today; I have no idea who they are; but they must be smart! :) (more…)

Social Media – career enhancement

Neodigital Art - It shows creativity and possibly a respect for nature

Horoscope Aquarius

Sunday 10 April

Look towards your health and well-being. The Moon in your wellness zone is encouraging you to slow down, not so easy for someone who is currently whizzing around at a million MPH. So think about nurture and nourishment. You need the kind of foods that feed your nervous system, brain food, if you like. Eat well like this and you’ll feel so much better.

That’s my horoscope for today. I need some brain food; I have chicken for dinner that is loaded with tryptophan and I’ll have lots of veggies too. My health is the most important thing to me but we have to think about other things and make life interesting. Man cannot live by chicken and veggies alone! (more…)

Social Media – Cascading the portals

Neodigital Art being democratised by social media

I get my horoscope every day, emailed to me with the weather. It’s been spookily accurate this week. This morning it advised I should only confide my worries to someone I could trust; otherwise I could talk about something confidential and it could lead to gossip. Gossip can be destructive and it’s information or misinformation passing from one person to many and they keep on passing it on. It spreads like a virus to a whole community and sometimes beyond. You can spread gossip or information using social media like Facebook or LinkedIn. When it spreads like a virus this is cascading and the portals are Facebook, LinkedIn, email, Windows Live, blogs and every communication method on the internet. These portals of information are important and very powerful. (more…)

Neodigital Art: Update Four

Neodigital Art - A church can look spectacular

My first picture is in silhouette and I altered a few attributes on the photograph to get that effect. In Windows Live Photo Gallery click ‘edit’ at the top of the screen and it’s brings up a lot of editing tools. You need more control and so click fine tune and some useful tools are on the right of the screen. (more…)

Close Encounters!

Neodigital Art - Do you see this when you look at a cloud?

Horoscope Aquarius

Monday 04 April

Words can be your currency this week, and if they are used in a measured, thoughtful way, your communication can make a major impact. However, equally others can feel passionate about their views and someone may spring something on you that will come as a major surprise, like hearing from an old flame, perhaps by email or text message. (more…)


Neodigital Art - this was taken at a nature reserve a week ago - a hidden treasure


Horoscope Aquarius

Sunday 03 April

Keep a pen and notepad handy, and a camera and your mobile. Today is all about thinking and having the most brilliant ideas you have ever had. Make sure you write them down, photograph them, talk them into a recording device and keep them to hand. Your mind is really operating at the very top of its gearing, and this can see you quick-witted too.

Isn’t that spooky! I had just finished writing some notes in a notepad and I checked my email and got this horoscope. I am planning to go out this afternoon to take photographs for my Neodigital Art blogs and so I checked my mobile (cell phone) was fully charged. Actually it rang, it was still on GMT and the alarm went off; that is my emergency alarm in case I sleep through the clock. It went off a hour late because I hadn’t altered it to dreamless time. I feel constantly tired since altering the clocks an hour; I wish the dreamless ones would leave them alone. You cannot save daylight! I say it every year, twice a year; it makes no difference. (more…)

How to write

Images for Neodigital Art can be found just about anywhere.


Immature poets imitate; mature poets steal.

T. S. Eliot

A good writer steals just like the poet or the artist. I read a story by a writer some time ago and knew what she watched on TV many years ago; she had used the same ideas. I saw the work of an artist and could see the impressionism of the last century and influences from this century. The artist’s work has since changed, I can’t see the influences so much; it is still impressionist but the influences are more diverse and more complex. She steals her ideas from many sources. (more…)

A good style

A Good Style

This church is over 600 years old and on the site of a fort that was there 1,000 years ago.

This church is over 600 years old and on the site of a fort that was there 1,000 years ago.

Sunday, 06 March 2011

A good style: how to blog

A good style should show no signs of effort.  What is written should seem a happy accident.  ~W. Somerset Maugham, Summing Up, 1938

I do try to make writing look easy and make it flow. I get confused by some things; like why do Americans spell things simply? Why do they try to abandon the semi colon? We could all end up abandoning commas and full stops (periods); and simplifying words like you to; u. I like semi colons; they give me a pause longer than a comma and shorter than a full stop, this is important when you write comedy.  I had a good week with this blog, I started with a blog entitled Great Expectations; people are still reading that one. I posted it on the first of the month because I wanted to make a start; my goal this month is to double my page views. I didn’t think it would be easy, I did well in February. Great Expectations wasn’t a resounding success but picked up a few readers every day; today being the best day and it’s not over yet. Then I tried to make people a little more aware that I blog about Farmville which is a game on Facebook if you’re not familiar with it and has about 30,000,000 active players each month.  Intended to post my Farmville blog on Saturday but first came the Thrifty Thursday blog followed up the next day by the Frugal Friday blog .


Great Expectations

Great Expectations

A little modern Neodigital Art - The Metro in Central England

Neodigital Art - The Metro

Great Expectations

Last week I wrote some satire entitled The Emperor’s New Clothes stealing the title from Hans Christian Anderson’s story. That story of course had a moral, Emperors, Kings, Queens, Presidents and politicians will believe anything they are told; if it suits them to do so.

This week I steal my title from a classic by Charles Dickens and one of my favourite books. It was about a young boy; Pip, who steals food to help a convict and later inherits his wealth; giving him Great Expectations. The story is quite complex and has many morals; there are two young ladies Biddy who is poor and ordinary and who treats Pip well helping him with his education. Then there is Estelle, who lives at the big house and treats him badly, but she is beautiful and rich; he of course falls for Estelle. (more…)

The Emperor’s new clothes

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

The Emperor’s New Clothes” (Danish: Kejserens nye Klæder) is a short tale by Hans Christian Andersen about two weavers who promise an Emperor a new suit of clothes that are invisible to those unfit for their positions, stupid, or incompetent. When the Emperor parades before his subjects in his new clothes, a child cries out, “But he isn’t wearing anything at all!” The tale has been translated into over a hundred languages.

We are studying this story today on this side of the pond. Consideration is being given to the idea of offering the President of the United States an Invizzisuit when he makes his planned State visit to the UK in May. The suit cannot be seen by the dreamless ones of course; David Cameron said it was a great and frugal idea. He went on to say he liked the suit and it was a nice shade of green. When an emeritus professor pointed out the suit was pink the Prime Minister looked embarrassed and replied, “No, Green as in easily recycled.” We are hoping the President will announce improved trade between our two countries as President Hu Jintao of China did last month when he made his State visit to the United States. The BBC reported the news of the forthcoming State visit by the US president prominently on its website right underneath the headline story about gay rights. (more…)

Farmville Millions – Part Two.

Farmville Millions – Part Two

If you haven’t read part one of Farmville Millions you may find that useful because it has the basic information of how to play Farmville. Today, I am going to tell you how to make millions of coins from Dairy farming and how to get past level 100! This isn’t easy to understand so read carefully…

This shows the Move tool and multi tool

Check out the screen shot, I’m on level 107 and there are lots of cows and about a dozen bulls. You can also see the multi tool and move tool; using these tools is important. You can also see a dairy is ready to harvest, it has that pink thing over it and many cows are ready to harvest.

You can get bulls by going to friends pages and seeing if they have a stray bull; when they give you gifts go then – they are playing; get as many bulls as possible.

Now empty all your dairies! Yes, empty them! Use the delete tool to make room for the cows. I have no villa because I don’t need one; I can afford lots of them!

Now you need cows in just one dairy, select brown cows or any cow that has a better value than ordinary cows; if you have a million coins buy a belted cow and put that in. Fill it with ordinary cows if you don’t have enough.

It isn’t ready to harvest; no worries, we have a trick. Watch the bulls and cows that are outside your dairy. Don’t fill your dairy; you need room to place a bull or cow in there.

Do you have lots of bulls and cows ready to harvest? Yes? Now you can begin. You use the Move tool to move a bull into the dairy. Now change to the multi tool; click the dairy and jackpot; it harvests! Now remove the bull with the multi tool. Now you can harvest it again; just put in a bull that is ready to harvest using the move tool. Do not click bulls or cows that are outside the dairy with the multi tool – you will harvest them.

When you have run out of bulls that are ready to harvest; leave a bull in your dairy and using the move tool; put a cow in. The cow must be ready to harvest and have a pink thing over it. Use the move tool to put the cow in the dairy; then harvest the dairy by clicking it with the multi tool. Then use the multi tool to take a cow out of the dairy and just keep putting in ready to harvest cows and harvesting that dairy.

Belted cow

Buy lots of these belted cows at 1,000,000 coins each

When you have 1,000,000 coins buy a belted cow from the market. Remove one of the cows with the multi tool and replace it with the belted cow. You are now on your way to making millions! Harvest the dairy as described earlier either with a bull or a cow and watch your score go up; it will increase by 3,000 for every harvest. When you get to 1,000,000 coins; remove a cow and buy another belted cow and place that in the dairy. Now you harvests will go to 6,000 coins. I have 140 bulls and cows and so can do 140 harvests. I get 3,000 coins for each belted cow in the dairy. I started on Monday, 7 days ago and now have 39 belted cows! 39 X 140 X 3,000 = 16,380,000 coins in a day; in theory! In practice I would need all belted cows and I have 38 in the (huge) dairy plus the bull and I put in an ordinary cow to harvest. I’ll make nearly 16 million coins today. Try to get your friends to help you upgrade your dairy to large and then to huge so it holds 39 cows and a bull.  Keep spending your cash on belted cows and then when you are super rich; you can make your farm look pretty with all kinds of stuff!

Please don’t fill your whole farm full of cows; people will think you are nuts! :)

Please comment; follow me on Twitter where I put links to my blogs and share this link on Facebook. You need your friends to give you bulls and cows; they will also help you upgrade your dairies if you share this awesome trick with them! I will do more Farmville blogs. Pigs next probably…

Happy Farming…

I got over 15,000,000 today:

My farm

My farm by 4:30pm. I made 15,000,000 coins

Hypnosis, psychology and social networking continued…

Hypnosis, psychology and social networking continued…

If you read my previous post on this subject I said the hypnotherapist needed to be honest. That isn’t quite true. He or she needs to be benevolent rather than malevolent. Lies are usually malevolent but not always. The child who tells his parent about his invisible friend isn’t being honest but isn’t lying either and so when he says he has been playing with his secret friend Charlie; he is being imaginative. Children believe what they say when they are playing and so can sound very honest. The same is true of adults but honesty is still the best policy unless honesty would be malevolent. If someone is over-weight for example it is impolite and malevolent to point it out.

When you are communicating you need to relax and if you are being nasty and malevolent this will be harder to achieve and probably impossible. I have said in previous posts that we can say to ourselves a 1,000 times, “I am more confident,” or “I look good,” and not believe it; but if someone else says “You look good today,” it immediately enhances our self esteem and we feel better and more confident. The hypnotherapist does the same thing but much more effectively when he is trying to rebuild someone’s self esteem. If you don’t believe you can lose weight, the hypnotherapist can help you believe in yourself and it will be easier to stick to a diet and exercise program. The same applies to conquering addictions like drugs and smoking. The hypnotherapist does need knowledge of addiction though; especially with drugs when he will advise clients to reduce the drug slowly. The typical reduction accepted, is a 10% cut in the dosage every two weeks. This reduction works for most drugs but can be difficult when you get down to the last pill in the case of benzodiazepines like Valium, for example. Many people take 30 mg of Valium a day and a 3mg cut is easy but when you get down to below 10 mg a day cutting less than 1 mg isn’t easy and clients often cut more than 10% and this will result in withdrawal symptoms. The hypnotherapist can help negate the withdrawal by giving the client something else to think about other than the withdrawal symptoms which may seem overwhelming. Even on the last 2 mg of Valium a day clients can have problems cutting down and then many file 10% off a pill, take that and keep cutting slowly even though cutting the last 2 mg to nothing may take as long as 6 months.

Hypnotherapists can use the power of suggestion to help with many other problems and need to understand the way the mind works and also the other systems in the body. Suggestion can have a direct affect on the nervous system and reduce pain; it can have an indirect affect on the endocrine system and change the hormone levels. When we are relaxed we produce more oxytocin which is often called the ‘love hormone.’ We produce this when we are relaxed and when we are touched or cuddled. The opposite is the hormone cortisol and high levels of this are implicated in many problems. High cortisol levels also make us feel unwell and anxious and of course anxiety produces high cortisol levels and so it’s a vicious circle. In many people who suffer from anxiety this results in the system going out of control and they experience ‘anxiety attacks’ or ‘panic attacks’ this is a serious and distressing problem that can be helped by hypnotherapy.

You can help stop people becoming anxious using both traditional face to face networking skills and online social networking skills. The main skill to remember is to be nice, be diplomatic and be honest although not malevolently honest as in ‘that’s a fat butt, you must have eaten a few fries to get that.’

Everything we say is suggestion, particularly in person; but also we suggest things with what we write. Just being repetitive makes the suggestion more effective; repetition is both a rhetorical device and a psychological device and used by preachers on a Sunday to instil beliefs and advertisers every day of the week to convince you that their bread is tastier and softer than the other guys. Remember that and be careful of what you say and write and put more thought in to it. Thinking can be a great exercise to improve yourself! Try it while eating your next meal and imagine your next conservation; practice being honest but diplomatic. Consider how to address people, what is proper but friendly. At one time in England nearly everyone was addressed formally as mister, miss or missus but that has made way for more informal communication and first names are used far more often. When you end a letter, end it with your first and possibly you last name too and sign it with your first and last name. It is more informal and informal is seen as friendly. It can be a little confusing if you only use your first name. I have two entries in the guest book of my website and they both have a first name only; I have no idea who they are. I have a lot of friends online and offline and connections on Facebook, LinkedIn and other social networks; so just a first name doesn’t identify who left the message. I must admit I am guilty of leaving messages on answer phones that start with ‘it’s me.’  Just the way you address someone is important to establishing contact and the appropriate form of address is needed. My doctor addresses me informally and if I address him as ‘doctor’ it is more formal but informal would be inappropriate.  Informal isn’t always a two way street. There is etiquette offline and there is also etiquette online, never SHOUT! Use a relaxed style of writing and even if you only write one line try to stay in touch with people who are important to you. I send virals out, jokes, pictures or videos to inform, entertain and amuse. I forwarded videos on a couple of days ago and many people enjoyed them; it gave me a reason to contact people and they were reminded I am still here if they need me.

You should remember that everyone needs everyone else and so don’t ask what they can do for you; ask what you can do for them. In this blog, I am trying to inform based on my experience in psychology and to a certain extent hypnosis. Thinking changes a lot about psychology and hypnosis in particular. In recent years CBT (cognitive behaviour therapy) has become popular and some hypnotherapists have used that in conjunction with hypnotherapy or used it to alter the suggestions they give. I haven’t discussed hypnotherapy for a long time and so missed most of these suggestions. I am familiar with CBT generally and not a fan, I have my own thoughts about hypnotherapy and haven’t been affected by collective and trendy thinking. Always beware of trends. I remember a movie that was about a girl with multiple personalities and psychiatrists who watched it were influenced by the collective suggestions in the movie. They started seeing the symptoms of multiple personas in all their patients and the diagnosis of the problem in the USA soared in the months after the movie was released. You can be the subject of suggestion and although we don’t like to think we are easily led; we often are.

Check back for more interesting blogs. I intend to do a few every week and more comedy. :)

Hypnosis, collective psychology and social networking.

Hypnosis, collective psychology and social networking

It is difficult to explain how hypnosis works in a blog but I can at least explain the basics and how it can be useful to understand it in the context of collective psychology and social networking. You may already know that blind people have more sensitive hearing as a result; because their other senses become more sensitive to compensate for their loss of sight. People close their eyes when they kiss to block out the sense of sight and make the sense of touch more sensual! People are more sensitive in a darkened room only lit by candle light or the flames of a log fire and that is considered romantic.  People make love in a dark room for the same reason. You can of course try putting a brown paper bag over your lovers head to enhance this effect. Please don’t use plastic; the heavy breathing is quite sexy but it can be dangerous. I also had problems with a brown paper bag; I could still remember what she looked like! :)  Anyway, to do hypnotherapy a darkened room and a comfortable chair or couch is a good idea. If the subject is still and can’t see or feel very much then their hearing will be much more sensitive. They will hear the slightest change in the therapist’s voice and so it’s important for the therapist to be relaxed and in giving the suggestions must be very honest. The subject will detect lies very easily as the vocal chords tense up with the anxiety. The therapist has to be careful what he or she says. If you have watched the Mentalist on television, they say he hypnotises people when he is just talking to them. Is this possible? In a way it is because what the therapist does is not tell the subject what to do or believe; they suggest things. It is the difference between a boss giving orders or suggesting to employees what they should do; the latter is done in a relaxed way and is more acceptable. The suggestions have to be acceptable and better still desirable. This can lead to problems. It is fine to help someone believe that they can be more confident if they lack confidence; but what is they have homicidal tendencies? You don’t have to hypnotise to suggest that they can be more confident and in turn make them more confident. If you suggest it in an honest way and you believe what you are saying then the suggestion is more likely to work.

Now how do you suggest things online? How do you suggest things to a large number of people? Let us look at the car salesman who shouts at us from the television. “Come on down,” he shouts, “and I’ll do you a great deal; I’m honest Fred!” We tend to think we have heard it all before. The psychological device of repetition may work, particularly on people who are as honest as ‘honest Fred’ who would take you to the cleaners for a quid. So influencing people means relaxing and being honest, certainly don’t shout like those awful salesmen. It means gentle suggestions and they should be an after thought sometimes. ‘You may like this car, isn’t it a nice colour?’ There are two suggestions in that sentence and the second one is the effective suggestion. They tend to think, ‘yes, it is a nice colour’ then they think ‘yes, I do like that.’

To use a cliché, ‘honesty is the best policy’. If you say ‘can I help you,’ have the intention of helping them and not yourself. This is of course offline suggestion and they can’t hear you online if you are blogging or tweeting. Then it gets harder and you have to be repetitive without being boring. You have to be consistent and a good liar needs a good memory and so it’s better to be honest. Never use upper case it’s considered SHOUTING! The car salesman shouts to cover his dishonesty. If you are writing a blog then it should be clear and it should flow with a natural flow. It should read like a relaxed conversation. You shouldn’t attempt to tell the reader anything but suggest things; perhaps changes in what they believe. They may have fixed views about social networking and you want to sell them on the idea of a fan page on Facebook. Don’t try to sell the idea, suggest it is worth considering and then try to add weight to your idea. You may be able to add weight to you idea by giving an example. Her Majesty the Queen of the United Kingdom and Commonwealth started a Fan Page last week; is that weighty enough? The same applies of course to LinkedIn profiles with one of the most visited profiles being the very weighty one of the President of the United States. I read the other day that you should keep a blog concise and use bullets and numbering – that will kill the flow dead. That is also a mistake in a resume or CV which also needs honesty, integrity and a nice flow to the writing. I start CV’s with a short story, very short less than 100 words. I do the education, past experience and end with a short story. The ending is usually about interests that invariably include caring for the community and the environment. Being socially responsible is not only a good thing, it’s quite fashionable and if there is a band wagon going your way; why not hitch a ride?

Remember not to try too hard, you will get tense and it will show when you speak and it may show in your writing. We tend to be less afraid when we are relaxed or relaxed when we are less afraid! We joke more when we are less afraid because it takes courage to joke about things. All jokes are at someone’s expense and can offend and so they are risky. Tweets will be more effective if they are funny and people will be more likely to click a short URL to your blog. This is a good way to get people to read your blogs!

Thanks for reading, please leave a comment. I am thinking of serialising a novel in a blog and I will answer questions and blog about things I am asked about.



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