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C.T.OVERDRIVE: The Site Connor Turner Overdrive | c.t.overdrive

The Site

The Student Surpasses The Teacher Wednesday July 15, 2009

It’s official the student has surpassed the teacher…

Let me explain.

Glutastic vs. c.t.overdrive - Stuvent vs. Teacher

A year ago, my girlfriend (since then she’s been promoted to fiancée) launched a tiny little web site called Glutastic.com.

The idea was simple.

Create a little blog, so Caitlin could help spread all of the information she’s gathered from her struggle with Celiac Disease and the world of Gluten Free Diets. We wanted to help people and to shed some light on the subject. Because let me tell you, being told that you have to remove Gluten from one’s meal plan is a f.a.h.k.in pain in the ass.

Anyways, Glutastic officially launched last September with a pretty solid release. Caitlin’s friends and family started eating it up. Being a web nerd and a bit of statistics junkie, I kept watch over the stats. It quickly became apparent that Glutastic wasn’t going to be just a typical blog.

At an alarming rate the Glutastic readership started growing. Crushing major milestones with ease. 200 readers a month, then 500 readers, and so on. Until last week the unthinkable happened and I was forced to conceded defeat to my adorable, yet viciously competitive fiancée.

The Student Had Surpassed the Teacher.

It was a similar moment, to how the grey-haired BeachHead gets p0wned by Jinx In the 1987 rendition of G.I.Joe The Movie. Last week Glutastic leap-frogged c.t.overdrive in readership with one single kick to the groin post.

A post on Gluten Free Stampede Breakfast (please note that it’s a singular reference to Gluten-Free Stampede Breakfasts), landed at the top of most Search Engines relating to the Stampede. Because of which, Glutastic catapulted past the old c.t.overdrive. More remarkably, this post has paced Glutastic to double the overdrive’s readership for the entire month of July.

Now, to be honest I’m sort of exaggerating the competitive nature of this unique blogging couples thing we’ve got going on. In actuality, I’m super proud of her work on Glutastic and what it’s provided for others. Watching her reassure distressed readers and bumping into people who love her blog, has been far more rewarding than any set of Google Analytics could.

But the statistics do reveal some interesting concepts.

Personal Blogs vs. Community or Health Driven Blogging

First and foremost, don’t date a woman who blogs.

I’m kidding

In actuality, the major defining difference between the random insanity of the c.t.overdrive (a personal blog) and the direct nature of Glutastic, is the online community that’s been built.

Where I tend to write to an over-saturated audience of 20-40 year olds interested in music, t-shirts, ex-Calgary news anchors and Twitter. Caitlin writes directly to an undeserved audience – people battling with Celiac disease in Calgary. It’s because of this tone and direction that a cool little community has evolved around the Glutastic blog. Which in turn is why the site has become so successful in a short amount of time.

Upon visits to Glutastic you’ll notice that most posts are populated with 5-7 comments from a variety of casual and consistent readers. Discussion can be light-hearted or pretty passionate – depending on her level of sarcasm. It’s great to see and in conjunction with another popular blog, The Celiac Husband, it’s evidence that a small online community of Celiacs is bonding together. Which in turn was the whole purpose of the site.

One of the other major differences, is that Glutastic’s Celiac community is a group of incredibly loyal and engaged readers. People who literally survive off on word of mouth recommendations. We’ve run into people in the real world, who upon learning about her condition, have suggested we check out a site called Glutastic. Which always brings out a bit of a chuckle. But it is this sort of nature that allows Glutastic (and as a whole Health Blogs) the ability to really thrive. Where in comparison a Personal Blog without a specific audience, like the old c.t.overdrive, tends to plateau in readership.

The Student Surpasses The Teacher

Anyways, there’s far more technical stuff that I could dive into (stuff like bounce rates, popular posts, RSS feed loyalty, etc.), but the impressive nature in which Glutastic is able to captivate and cultivate readers is very interesting to watch. And to pull on my worn old heart strings, it also makes me very, very proud. awwwww

Plus it also means I get to scream I taught her how to Tweet at passers by.

Categories: glutastic, The-Site, The Blogosphere, The Calgary Vibe, The Canada Vibe, The Family, The Humourous, The Inane, The Personnal

28ish - Redux Thursday June 4, 2009

Typically, I don’t repost existing posts, but for some reason textpattern doesn’t like me calling a post by a single numeral. Therefore I’m reposting my birthday post from last year in preparation for this year’s additions to the things I’ve learned.

Hmm … 28.

28 +2 = 30! 30 = Official Adulthood.

28 years ago with me old man.

hmm, So I’m 28 today. Odd that there was a time, when I never thought I’d even see 21. Therefore I think it’s pretty awesome to be 28 today.

I usually take my birthday off to relax and do some of things I love to do, but never get the time to do (watch Aliens, play Shining Force, drink Coke Floats, etc.,). Unfortunately, today I’m stuck working (well, for the day at least) and for some reason I’m in a reflective mood. While this might seem a bit pompous, here are some things I’ve learned in my young 28 years.

1) Fish-atarians & Chicken-atarians are ridiculous. Especially the ones that wear leather. Never take them seriously.

2) America Football is an amazing sport to watch … only if you bet on the games. If you don’t it’s boring.

3) If you do bet on sports, never bet against the Dallas Cowboys, the New England Patriots, Manchester Untied or the Detroit Red Wings. They always win when you bet against them and they will take your money.

4) Learn College Team names. The easiest way to start a conversation with someone who went to college in the states is to know that they were a Boilermaker or a Golden bear.

5) All crazy 110 year old East Indian men eat Yogurt. Most even live off yogurt. I’m just throwing it out there, but they might be on to something.

6) Smoking, while bad for your health and socially chastising, is always an easy way to meet people.

7) The best laid plans are never the memorable ones. The memorable ones are the ones where you end up in a place you never expected – For example going to Denny’s with members of the swim team, eating a bunless burger in a McDonald’s in Canmore or going to a gay bar in Minneapolis.

8) Volunteer as a kid. You’ve got the free time. You don’t need to work for money yet. It’s really good for you and it lets you laugh at people who didn’t volunteer and complain about work when your older.

9) Learn how to Iron a shirt and tie a tie. It’s embarrassing to be over 21 and can’t do either.

10) Never reference something you learned in High School as an argument. Also never argue with a professor. That whole 10 years of school thing probably indicates that the point you’re bringing up is something they’ve already thought of.

Furthermore, I pretty much guarantee that their point is going to squash yours.

11) Sophomore Albums always suck. Wait for the reunion tour. The one exception is Radiohead’s the Bends that was just phenomenal.

12) Never walk on a street barefooted. I don’t care how drunk you are or how much your heals make you hurt, it’s just dumb. Furthermore never raise your daughter to think that’s okay!

13) Never be afraid of public transit. Adults who fear public transit are usually odd.

14) Modified Corn Starch is the devil. Just try and stay away from it in general.

15) Okay, okay two exceptions to the sophomore rule – Rage Against the Machine’s – Evil Empire) was phenomenal.

16) Spider-man anything is always in style. Unless you’re a grown man wearing Spider-man PJs, because that’s just wrong. Spider-man underoos on a woman though…that’s a different story.

Spiderman Birthday Cards with a Web Designer joke on them are amazing.

17) Traveling Europe for 5 months is all cool and all, but traveling all of the 50 American States is a thousand times cooler. Who wants to see dozens of old crusty museums when you could get an In & Out Burger and watch a baseball game.

18) Never say no to having coffee/beer/tea with your parents or family. You never know when you might not get another chance.

19) Bar napkins are suitable legal stationary, especially for wills.

20) While people will mock you at parties and maybe some other social events, it’s all ways good to carry a camera around. Because when your old or just need some inspiration, just remember the person with the most photos of life always win.

22) Contrary to what Hollywood wants you to believe whiskey is not a suitable replacement for stitches. Unless you digg permanent scars.

21) Always, always, always enjoy your birthday.

Categories: The-Past, The-Site, The Craziness, The Humourous, The Inane, The Personnal, The Pop-Culture

Sponsored By Zombies Wednesday May 6, 2009

So, you’ll probably notice something a little new on the ol’overdrive…

What, you finally fixed the floating lion and some of the spacing issues

No, but you’d be close. Look harder.

Ah, you’re sponsored by Zombies!

Yes, you’re sorta right.

If you’ve been reading the site for a while, you’ll know that I’ve experimented with a slew of different forms of monetization for c.t.overdrive. Most have failed miserably and subsequently diminished what’s left of the site’s integrity. But now I’ve found a solution that not only do I support, but that actually reflects the theme of c.t.overdrive.

Anyways, I’ve aligned with GoMedia’s Affiliate program to promote some of the great vector, fail stickers, t-shirt templates and design products from GoMedia’s arsenal.

Yes, not only are these products somewhat inline with the site, but GoMedia’s products are something I use on a daily basis. Yes, I actually stand behind the products on the site (unlike the horrible dating sites of yesteryear). If you look at the vectors on this site you’ll see at least three different examples of GoMedia’s great work. So if you’re a designer looking to add to your toolkit click on the ads, spend a bit of money and make your clients go ooooooo.

(A shoutout goes towards Rhet Soveran’s Bailing Bucket site for planting the affiliate seed)

Categories: The-Site, The-Pop-Culture,

The Maddness of the Overdrive Saturday January 17, 2009

or … ctoverdrive version 5.0

Yes, this was a long, long time coming, but I finally got around to releasing the latest redesign of c.t.overdrive. Do you like? Is it odd ball enough for yeah?

Anyways, the simple back ground of the design inspiration comes from, nothing more than my twisted, artistic and illogical mind. The overdrive has always been an online sort of mental notebook and now it reflects this mentality. Taking a page from my legion of scatter moleskin notebooks and helpful bit of inspiration from Web Designer Wall. This new rendition of the overdrive is that anti-thesis of everything that is the Web 2.0 aesthetic.

It’s not shiny, it’s not crisp and there are no real straight lines. There’s no reflections and smooth gradients. It’s just a raw, messy, visual upchuck of creativity.

If your curious as to the tools used in this design, well besides a scanner and a notepad, here are all the online tools used in this design.

While the design aesthetic is completely anti Web 2.0, the structure and basis is full on Web 2.0. The two atom feeds are in the top right hand corner with a fancy little one-inch button of the corporation. And on the side you’ll find links to ever single freaking Social Media Network I happen to be associated with. And in the footer, which I think is the best part are two direct feeds. A Twitter feed (So you can creep out all my random comments on Twitter) and also a FriendFeed which displays every movement I make on the Interweb.

So I hope you enjoy. Feel free to leave comments as, like always they are always welcome. There are couple of small design features and content updates (The Story needs a dramatic revision) that I am working on, but those will be fixed once I get a chance.

Take care,

Categories: The-Site, The-Blogosphere, The ArtWorld, The Craziness, The Inane, The Personnal, The Pop-Culture, The Twitter-verse

Growing Pains Saturday January 17, 2009

So please bear with me for the moment. As you can see there are a couple of changes occurring with the old c.t.overdrive.

While it would have been great to implement a full on redesign without any glitches, things never seem to go that easy. Browser compatibility issues, general well it sounded like a great idea at the time and the occasional coding error are causing a bit of trouble.

Hopefully hash out these errors by Sunday evening. So check back then.

Take care,

Categories: The-Site, The-Future,

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