Cool Tools You Can Use

Move over Craftsman! Here are some odds and ends worth checking out. Even though they share nothing in common other than the fact they all reside on the Web, I thought these applications were all good enough to pass along to Studio readers.

The first is a search engine for those of you who employ WordPress to power your blog or website, or develop for same. It is called SeekWP (link here). SeekWP’s results are real-time and include WordPress themes, tips, tricks and plug-ins. You can specify themes, tips or all. Results show the source URL, which you can click to get to the goods. Thumbnail previews are provided by I can’t tell if SeekWP is maintained by Tropica or the site is designed by Tropica, but kudos to them for a cool tool or design or whatever role they played in this app.

The next tool is called Web2PDF (link here). It’s got a lot going for it. First, it’s free. Second, it allows you to convert any web page to PDF. It is a fantastic alternative for sharing information off-line or, even better, archiving your web content. You can use the online converter tool by entering the URL, clicking the “convert” button and then downloading the PDF that results. Or, you can email a URL to and the reply will have your PDF attached to it. Finally, you can get a Web2PDF button that you can install on your own website or blog, making it a simple click for your readers to download and save your web info. Web2PDF has extensions for IE, Firefox, Chrome, Safari and Opera. It also includes online Word to PDF, PDF to Word and PDF to Excel converter tools. Lots of fun in one package!

Finally, how about taking your Facebook stream data and turning it into its own mini-blog? Check out (link here) – it offers a few themes and import options based on the Open Graph API that everyone is talking about. You just connect the app to your account, give it the usual permissions, watch your items import, give them a theme and enjoy your blog! Nice means for repurposing the content you are already generating on Facebook.


Facebook Friend-zy

Facebook, Inc.
Image via Wikipedia

Hard not to have been hit over the head the past couple of days with all of the news about Facebook . Big changes that affect your privacy, how you interact across the Facebook site and how you interact across the Web are in a state of flux.

On some level, I must have subconsciously known that these changes were in the air, because I was struck with a major Spring cleaning “friend-zy” and, over the past several days, have been strengthening the connections between my profile and business page AdvantageAdvocates and between the business page and its web page.

I found tons of great Facebook apps and some new plug-ins to assist me in the process. Rather than go through them all right now (you can see many of them in the new boxes and tabs on both my Facebook Profile (link here) or on my Business Page (link here), I thought I would highlight one that I just installed on my website. This one is part of the big story that Facebook is planning to add a “like” button to the entire Web.

Remember back, over a year ago, when Facebook was threatening to conquer the Web with its universal check-in, Facebook Connect? Well, its’s deja vu all over again. The like button is another iteration of this concept – if you have a Facebook profie and see a “like” button on a site, you can quickly connect to the and with the site wherever you happen to be.

To that end, I installed a brand new plug-in on the home page of AdvantageAdvocates (link here). It looks like this:

It’s dynamic in that it shows updates from the page. The images of the fans also change with different clicks, just as they do on your Facebook Profile page. But most importantly, the button allows a web surfer far from the confines of Facebook’s walled garden to reach into Facebook and effect a “like” of my business page. More dynamic and engaging that simply “sharing” my page into another social site.

How did I do it? Well, that was not difficult. Over at the Facebook Developers Page (link here), there are eight brand, spanking new social plug-ins that feed off of this new “like” vocabulary. I personally used the Like Box (link here). There are also a Like Button (link here), Recommendations (link here), Login with Faces (link here), Comments (link here), Activity Feed (link here), Facepile (link here), and Live Stream (link here).

Click the link of the desired plugin. Get your Page Id. I know there must be an easier way to get it than I did – I used an old Promote Your Page Fan Box Widget Link that didn’t work, but I was able to lift my Page ID out of the html. Simply insert that Page ID into the marked box, hit enter and up pops the code. Copy the code, paste it onto the desired page and in the desired location in your web site editor and Voila – dinner is served!

Will it result in more fans, better connection, better engagement? I certainly hope so! Come on over to my page (link here), jump in and let’s talk about it!

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