Do You Think Google+ Will Replace Facebook Or Twitter?

For the past two weeks, Google+ has been running on an invite only mode to control the growth of its users and pick out any bugs before its final launch. Within these two weeks, I have been testing out Google+ and have been enjoying my experience so far. But all I hear is people talking about if it is going be a Facebook killer and how much time are people given up on Facebook to be on Google+. Here is my personal prospective. Google+ is a new social network that we can use to improve our everyday lives. It takes all the great features and objectives of other social media websites and aggregates these features into a super social media website. It is more of a professional Facebook profile where you can follow other people and organize them into circles. Here is what I will use Google+ for in comparison to what I use the other social media site for and why Google+ will be added to my list of sites to check daily.

Google+ and Facebook

With Facebook reaching 700M+ users, you would think that Google would implement and improve all of Facebook’s features and sure enough they did. So what will I use Google+ for over Facebook? Well nothing. I will still use everything that Google+ and Facebook has to offer but just with a different incentive. Facebook for me is a place that consists of my social life. I am connected to friends that I know in real live and am interested in what they are up to. It is a place where I do not hesitate to upload pictures of a party I went to the night before, message people I do not want my professional contacts seeing and for girls. Wait, let’s be serious here.

Okay, now Google+ is a place I can use to connect with professionals and my friends. I will be posting more professional looking photos of myself that I don’t mind anyone seeing. I believe you have the ability to connect with people in a more personal level. My status updates will be more based on my profession instead of about what I am doing next weekend. I am also able to easily connect with people that I could potentially network with using the hangout feature. This could be easier to use and just as powerful as Skype is for business. In a couple years, it could be a replacement for the need of Skype since it Google+ provides everything Skype has and more.

Google+ and Twitter

Twitter is a very unique way of socializing with others and branding your business with its micro blogging functionality. I have had the ability to meet a bunch of great people on twitter but the one thing it lacks is connecting with people on a personal level. All you get to do is see their face, their description about themselves and their tweets which are limited to 140 characters long. But what is great about Twitter is that you can follow people without the need of following them back. This is not a 1-to-1 relationship just like Facebook . Google+ implements these relationship features type very well and also added an innovative feature which allows you to organize your followings into what are called circles. There is really nothing that I would use Google+ over Twitter other then organizing my following into circles. Everything that I end up tweeting on Twitter, I will usually post on Google+ but not vice versa.

Google+ and LinkedIn

LinkedIn is one of the best websites that you can use to connect with millions of other professionals and brand yourself in a more professional way. LinkedIn has many features that Google+ does not have (such as Job search, Questions, Groups, etc.) but LinkedIn’s main incentive for connecting with others in a more professional manner does relate to Google+. With LinkedIn having the highest on average income per user throughout all other social networking sites at just over $100k per year, I can see Google+ taking second place in the near future with around 60k-80k per year. Google+ is going to be the Facebook for business hands down. Your profile description has the full capability of being able to display all of your qualifications just as well as LinkedIn does. There is nothing I would use Google+ over then LinkedIn but I will start using Google+ to connect with professionals in a more personal way.


With Google’s third attempt on trying to make a name into the Social Media game (Buzz and Wave ended as failures), I think this time they are on the right track. They are combining all of the great features from other popular social media websites and creating a super social media site. It can be viewed as a professional networking website where you can post photos and videos of yourself, video chat with your connections and post content to your circles. What else can we ask for?
If you enjoyed this article, please add me to you circle on Google+.

Posted in Google+, Social Media | Leave a comment

How To Save More Money Using

As a student, the thought about money and how much I am spending can be a scary thing. For years I just purchased everything on my debit card and never really paid attention to my account balance. I did this until I realized that I was spending more money then I was making and my balance was noticeably falling. After my savings were diminished, I was introduced to a website called Mint.

What is

Mint is a web application that aggregates all of your bank accounts in one easy to use dashboard for FREE. You just enter your banking information(Yes it is secure) and it monitors all of your account transactions and balances. The transactions are categorized so you will be able to track and manage your monthly spending habits and set budgets for each category. You will be able to track and manage your income as well so you can keep that upward sloping income graph.

Why is it so Effective

Start Saving More Money: It is like having a personal accountant. You can track all of your monthly income and expenses and improve your spending habits over time. I went from losing money each month to saving money and building my savings account. I managed increase my monthly income because I made it a challenge to try and beat what I made the previous month. Since I am a part time freelancer, I would have the opportunity to either increase my hourly rate or only except compelling projects working more hours and overall make more money.

Reality Check: You can see how much you are actually saving each month. You may ask, “I am only saving $500 a month? That is only $6,000 a year.” This will be a reality check to either spend less or make more money. Maybe the job you have is just not cutting it and you may have to look for a higher paying one. Or if you are a student like me, you may realize that you need to find a part time job during your studies.

My Opinion

Overall, Mint is a great website that allows you to track and manage all of your bank accounts and spot your spending habits that you were once unaware of. If you wish to save more money each month then I highly recommend you start using Mint. One of the greatest decisions I have made for my financial health.

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How to Take a Screenshot Image of any Website with WordPress

A couple of days ago, I was signing up for an account on Gravitar and was entering the link to this blog to add to my account. After I clicked add, within a few seconds, a screenshot image of my website was placed on the website and I started to get a little excited because I recently was faced to dynamically take screenshots of webpages for a startup a friend of mine was developing and we couldn’t figure it out. So I opened the link to the image of my webpage and was lucky to see that it was dynamically hosted by wordpress with this link.

So I did some research and it turns out wordpress uses it for their own apps and it is free for anyones use.

So how to I use it?

All you have to do is load this image{your_url}?w={the_width} and replace {your_url} and {the_width} accordingly. It may take a few seconds to generate the image depending on the webpage but overall, just add the generated image to your website and you are done.

There is also a WordPress plugin called BM-Shots that you can use in wordpress by entering a [shortcut] code in your page to display it.
For more information about the plugin go here.

Hope you will be able to use this trick to create on demand screenshot images of webpages for your website in just a few seconds.

Posted in Wordpress | 1 Response

How SSL Works Using Public Key Cryptography

Everyone has been to a webpage where the page is secured using some sort of SSL encryption and the beginning of the URL has https instead of http. Most people have a basic idea of how it works and that the data you enter in a form is encrypted when sent to the server (e.g. Your credit card information). But how can the server decrypt this encrypted information if we can’t just blatantly send the encryption key to server with the risk of an intruder stealing the key and then decrypting our information? This is the problem that began the study of public key cryptography.

Public key cryptography is the exchange of a secret key from one party to another through public transactions when the secret key isn’t exchanged. So how does it work? Say we have two people, Bob and Sally, and Bob would like to send Sally a secret box that is protected by a combination lock. If Bob sends the box to Sally with his lock on it, he will have to send Sally the combination along with the box. Anyone can read the combination and unlock the box before Sally even receives the box. This will not work. But what if Sally sends Bob her lock, Bob locks the box and sends Sally the box with her lock on it. This would work and be secure because Bob does not know the combination to her lock and once he locks the box, he can not open it. Sally is the only one who knows combination and she will safely receive her box.

So how does this work when entering your credit card information on a webpage and clicking “Buy Now”? What is the algorithm behind all of this? Well SSL uses an algorithm called Diffie Hellman Key Exchange. This algorithm works as the following.

Say we have a client and a server trying to decide on an encryption key. The client and the server share two public values p and i. The value p is a prime number, only divisible by itself and one, that is a large number greater then 1000 and the value i is an integer that is less than p. The client and the server generate a private value r that is a large number greater then 1000 and is secret to only itself. Now the server will generate a key value a using the formula a = (i^r) mod p where mod is represented as modulus division. The server will send the value a to the client where the client will use the same formula to calculate its encryption key k. k = (a^r) mod p Now the client will do the same thing by calculating the key a using a = (i^r) mod p with its values and sending the a value to the server where the server uses the a value to calculate the encryption key using the formula k = (a^r) mod p . The value of k for both the server and the client will be the same. What the best part is is that it is almost impossible to generate the encryption key value k from using all of the public transfered values.

Here is an example (p and r and small values for simplicity but it reality, they are greater than 1000):

Server: Client:
p = 13 p = 13
i = 6 i = 6
r = 3 (Not shared) r = 10 (Not shared)
a = 6^3 mod 13 = 8 a = 6^10 mod 13 = 4
k = 4^3 mod 13 = 12 k = 8^10 mod 13 = 12
Encryption Key = 12 Encryption Key = 12

As you can see, the values that the server and client send back and forth do not represent the actual encryption key in anyway. When p and r are large values, it is almost impossible for any intruder to reverse the calculation and obtain the encryption key. This is a magic behind any type of SSL encryption.

Follow me on twitter @ShawnJanas

Posted in Security | Leave a comment

How To Use The New LinkedIn Platform

Linked in just released its new social platform in attempt to building the professional web. This will allow developers to integrate Linked In into their webpages like Facebook and Twitter does. This will include:

  • Sign In with LinkedIn, which makes it easier for users to authenticate or register for your site using their LinkedIn identity
  • Share, a button which enables users to share your website with LinkedIn’s professional audience
  • Member Profile, which brings LinkedIn profiles to your site
  • Full Member Profile, which brings larger, more detailed LinkedIn profiles to your site
  • Company Profile, which displays key company info at-a-glance
  • Company Insider, which shows rich company data from several different views
  • Recommend, a button which enables users to recommend your products and drive traffic back to you

Here is how to  implement the Linked In share button into your website.

First go to:

Enter the URL you would like to share. and select the type of button.

Click get code and you are done. If you want to dynamically change the URL then edit the generated code to the following:

<script src=”” type=”text/javascript”></script><script type=”IN/Share” data-url=”YOUR CUSTOM URL” data-counter=”top”></script>

Then you are finished.

This will be a great way for others to share your content on the web to their professional connections. This will be more effective then Facebook and Twitter when trying to promote your work.

What are your thoughts? Do you think may people will turn to Linked In integration over Facebook integration?

Posted in Linked In, Social Media | Leave a comment
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    Hi, my name is Shawn Janas and I am a programmer and entrepreneur in Hamilton, Ontario.

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