BRUTE wrote:wow, 55 blog posts is a lot. big plans! sounds like a pretty comprehensive set of goals.
Yeah, I’m not really sure how much effort the posts will take. There’s a good chance I’ll decide to do less. If I get in a groove, 55 should be no problem, but we’ll see. It will also depend on how long I make the posts vs. splitting them up.
BRUTE wrote:for the Spanish, brute recommends some type of spaced repetition app for vocabulary/sentence fractures, plus lots of practice or the memorized particles. there are online sites for finding language partners via skype.
_JT wrote:Duolingo for language learning
I used Duolingo and I think Memrize before and I liked them. I’ll probably use them both again. My cousin also sent me something to download and I think listen to. Not sure what it is exactly because It’s a big file and I don’t have it downloaded yet.
BRUTE wrote:about the cooking situation, is it feasible to run a slow cooker or similar in the van to batch cook food? brute isn't sure what those things pull in electricity.
It’s possible but I doubt I’ll bother. Using electric resistance for heat is inefficient. Upon a quick check, a really small crock pot uses like 6amps. On a sunny day in non-winter seasons, I could run that during the day without it being a problem. But I don’t see much use. It’s easy cooking with propane. Even if I batch cook (which I already do with lentils/beans/rice) I’d probably still want to heat it up each time I eat.
Gilberto de Piento wrote:
You have the skills and experiences for a successful blog. I'm looking forward to following along. Good luck!
For information about the geology of the areas you are travelling through try https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/rockd/id1153056624?mt=8
and Rising From the Plains or Assembling California (depending on where you are in the West) by John McPhee.
I think you should add trying rock climbing to your list of things to do. Be wary of just climbing with random people though, not everyone knows what they're doing.
I’ll check out that app and those McPhee books. I’ve been hearing about how good McPhee is, so I look forward reading them.
I suppose I should try rock climbing. It could be a good way to meet people. I had two classes when I went to a fancy high school where we climbed on indoor climbing walls so I’m a bit familiar with it. I’ve just never had any desire to do it.
jacob wrote:You could cannibalize a lot of your journal for "how I got to this [FIRE] point"-posts. Especially graphs and numbers (people love numbers).
I would suggest holding off on this until you have a "base" of 50 or so posts because those how I beat the system and did something awesome posts have a high level of virality and you want enough good posts already for your blog to be sticky when that happens.
Also, the sooner you start developing a "read this [first]"-list or some other organization of subjects, the more your future self will thank your present self.
Yeah, come to think of it, there are probably entire parts/posts I can copy and paste into blog posts (with some editing and expansion). I need to figure out how much financial stuff I think is appropriate to share on the blog. I’m not exactly sure yet, but I expect I’ll eventually share everything I do here.
Thanks for the advice on timing that kind of post.
This kind of blog advice is very helpful for me. So if you (any everyone else) want to give me more, please do.
theanimal wrote:How do you plan to get to 20,000 followers on Instagram? Posting more photos that are high quality? I don't use instagram so I'm curious how one goes about attaining this.
Automation. I post nice pictures, and that is important/required, but what gets me a lot of followers is using a computer program to interact with other Instagram users.
I read some mainstream articles/posts about how to do well on Instagram. They say the way to do it is post high quality content and they emphasize that you interact with the community. That you like people’s pictures, make real and thoughtful comments, etc (interacting with users who are interested in the same things as you). This does work… There are basically two ways that people follow you on instagram:
1 - They search for a hashtag they are interested in. Say, they search for #Vanlife. Thousands of pictures come up (always sorted by most recently posted, but with 9 fairly recent pictures stacked at the top that got a lot of likes quickly - these end up being pics from users with many thousands of followers as thats the only way for your pictures to get >1000 likes quickly). Ok.. They see a picture they like and view it. Then maybe they decide to follow the person who posted that pic. So, getting followers this way depends on posting high quality pictures and tagging them appropriately. A really good picture might get you ten followers.
2 - Community interaction. Like Facebook, you get notifications when another user has interacted with you. There are many ways (liking their picture, commenting on it, liking a comment they posted, replying to a comment they posted, following them, sending them a direct message). When they get notifications (especially for people who don’t get a lot of notifications) they will often look at the person’s profile who liked/commented/followed them. If they like what they see, they may follow that person.
#1 is making good product. #2 is advertising it. Your product does have to be good for the advertising to be effective.
Ok. so. Doing each of these take a lot of time. For me, #1 is easy/automatic because I’m already making the nice pictures. #2 takes a lot of time because it’s just a lot of looking and button pushing on your phone. I started doing my community interaction faster. Like searching for #vanlife and similar tags and liking the first 100 pictures. And commenting on 20 of them. Eventually, I was liking the pictures without really looking at them. Then after a while of that, I searched for and found a little bit of programming that I can paste into my browser console to make my account Like X pictures from a certain hashtag. Now I didn’t have to push the buttons on my phone so much. The code worked, but not perfectly, and only ran when I triggered it, and took some ongoing work to keep it running each time. So I tested some more fully automated services. There are websites/companies/apps that automate Instagram (and other S.M. types) community interaction for you, and that make your actual interaction easier (like ways to make it easier for you to see comments and respond to them. When you get a lot of notifications, it’s gets difficult to see and respond to comments, but a website app can make it easier for you to do by displaying them better). I tested out a couple. A really good one is called Archie. But it’s expensive. I use a cheaper one called Instagress. It’s $80 per year. These kind of services can do much more complicated interactions than the little “like” code I used. They can automatically like the pictures of users who follow/like/comment certain popular users that I designate. This is useful because it can expose my content to people who dream about living in a van but don't yet and thus don't post any content tagged #vanlife (Here's an example
of a popular account whose followers I have my automation targeting ). So now this thing can do quite a bit of community interaction for me all day long. While I’m sleeping, bicycling, taking pictures, masturbating, when I don’t have internet for a week straight, etc. That gets me another 40-120 followers per day.
Some of the automation tactics are annoying. People also do these manually and they are just as annoying. For example, the comments. Since you’re automating them, the comments pretty much have to be generic. (There are ways to automate comments that will usually look real by commenting on pictures with specific or multiple tags - for example “Wow, nice sunset!” on pictures tagged with #sunset). So the comments are like “Wow, great!
”. Right now, I’d estimate that 90% of all comments on Instagram are generic, and that well over 50% of all Instagram comments are made by a computer. When I used to get those comments, it was of annoying to get a notification and then look at it and see that it was probably just pasted in really quick by a person with no thought, or just made by a computer. Now it’s kind of funny. There’s another annoying tactic: following and unfollowing. You follow a person, hoping they will also follow you. Then you unfollow them. The automation can do this. One interesting thing since starting my automation is seeing people who’s pictures my automation commented on respond really happily. And then I think “wow, that automated comment seemed to really brighten up that person’s day”. So there is some positives to this robot bullshit game
Anyways… This is all pretty stupid. Why do it?
1 - To drive traffic to my blog
2 - It can be monetized. Instagram itself is not monetized for content creators like Youtube is. But, when you have many thousands of followers, you have many thousands of people looking at every picture you post, and many of those reading the caption you put in every picture. So you can get companies to pay you money. For example, they may pay to, say, hold their Hydroflask water bottle in your hand the next time you pot a picture of yourself hiking, and link to the @Hydroflask account in your comment. For people with huge follower amends (like >a million) a companies supposedly pay many thousands of dollars for just one advertisement post.
So, I look at this as fun. It’s a game to play. A way to experiment with human behavior that might just make me some money. There are some other side benefits that can happen, like meeting cool people with similar interests, getting useful feedback on what kind of pictures people like the most (in this specific format, which can be a little annoying - people like bright pictures with too much saturation. And they rrreeeeeaaaally like pictures with attractive women)
The results so far:
- From September 2015 to September 2016, I posted ~180 new pictures. My followers went from about 100 to about 700. Then I started using Automation, and:
- From September 2016 to now (early January 2017), I posted ~60 new pictures. My Followers went from 700 to 3,500.
Over time, I was posting better pictures and tagging better, but most of the increase is from using the automation to 'advertise' my content.
Cool. I’ll try to get a copy. I’ve read a simple book (or two), and found some good Youtube videos (I really like MCQ Bushcraft His advice isn’t significantly better than others, but his voice and presentation is wonderful.) I think the important part for me is to actually practice these skills, so I need to make sure I challenge myself to do so.
Bushcraft is one of the skills I've been working on myself. This is one of the best books I've read so far Bushcraft: Outdoor Wilderness Skills and Survival
The book mainly focuses on northern environments but the fundamentals apply everywhere. You'd just have to figure out what to substitute for various plants, trees, animals etc. I can provide some more book recommendations if you're interested.