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Jan 04

Story of my life

Have you ever wondered what is the story behind this website and all projects displayed there? Read this page…

Note: I have rewritten this page several times during 2013 after few WEIRD and RUDE questions from visitors (example). You can compare with original About Me page… hope is well written now and clear enough, if is not, please contact me and ask more specific what else I should write about me!


customer surveys

My life in pre-internet era

I am born in 1989 I was from young age a highly talented kid, creative and artistic talents, I love drawing and writing, studying, researching and collecting info, I am doing such things since before computers age, on paper.

My mom is in finance, dad in engineering, grandma from mom in pharmacy, grandpa also in engineering. Other relatives were not involved in my life. I do not have brothers and sisters and my parents also do not have.

But unfortunately I lived under a tight-regulated familiar regime, my parents “love” me and guide me in life but doing more bad than good, according local friends as well visitors of this website.

My family was very private, neighbors were not knowing much info about my parents, and I was wondering who is living behind our apartment walls. My family monitored me to know every person I interact with, sent me to school, took me from school, discouraged me from making friends in school, for many years supervised me all time when I was outdoor supposedly to protect from “bad guys”. However, we had about 40 friends, other families with children (people trusted by my parents). They were spread around city so we were meeting (in best case) one day per week when my parents arranged meeting. This was my only chance to play and socialize with other children. Interactions with everyone else were monitored by my parents and free speech was impossible.

 

So, most of day I was staying home, alone or with family, social interaction only with my BUSY parents, annoying them.
What else I shall do, rather than staying at computer and develop various hobbies? These hobbies turned me into an internet entrepreneur earning more money than my parents. But this took few years because I did not had anyone to help me and the restrictions imposed by parents just made my life harder.

I am using computer since 1997. Unlike most teenagers who buy computers only for gaming, chatting and watching porn, personally I was mostly working in Word, Excel and AutoCAD, rarely playing games.
I was working with NO professional purpose and NO intention to earn money.
I had no knowledge about business or marketing, did not knew that there could be people willing to pay my works, but anyway during childhood my parents would not let me to have own money (read below Road to online business).
I always wanted to learn new things, other than what is taught at my school, but I lacked educational resources.
Over time I abandoned most of the childhood hobbies to concentrate to the hobbies that have business potential.

– In first year I was drawing in Paint and already decided that when I will grow up, to get a job as Paint designer (that’s funny!).

– Next year I learned AutoCAD by watching my dad working and I hoped that some day I will have a job in graphic / CAD design like him.

– Since 1999 I got a passion for cars. I design 3D cars in AutoCAD and collect technical specs into a Car Encyclopedia in Word and Excel, which in 2012 I had a surprise discovery that I can do a business from selling car data, but only after extensive transformation from the original hobby into a format usable for commercial purposes.

– Since 2001 I design buildings in AutoCAD (and I am not referring at drawing floor plan of my own home or existing homes, but at making new building concepts, although the drawing itself was quite simple, only wall axis and doors, 3D models also simple). I lost the interest for architecture in 2003 due to lack of educational resources, but resumed in 2008 with Teoalida’s Virtual City, which was so impressive, that people now hire me to work for them, turning this hobby into architecture business in 2012.

– Since 2003 I got a passion for urban explorer and real estate. I drew maps of my city and this evolved in 2008 in studying Housing in Singapore and Housing around the World for purpose of learning architecture and developing my Virtual City. Also an Excel database with buildings of Singapore that I intend to sell like the Excel car databases.

– I love (listening to) music and since 2005 I compiled a music database in Excel, rating songs and making top of best artists using complex mathematical formulas. Rarely updating after 2012 considering an useless project.

– Since 1998 until 2005 I made a geography encyclopedia in Word and Excel. Abandoned in 2005 since I connected to internet and discovered Wikipedia.

– Since 1998 until 2002 I was watching and playing football, and again making in Word and Excel database and statistics about matches. In 2002 my parents throw away my collection of football magazines, putting an END to this hobby. Even if this did not happened, I would have abandoned it in 2005 due to content existing on internet.

– Since 1995? (before having a computer) I was writing stories from my real life, something like a diary/journal, but very different that today blogs looks like. Almost abandoned after 2007. A dream diary was added since 2002.

– Since 1997 until 2003 I also wrote few series of fictional stories, something like a novel, funny adventures, stories inspired from stupid things done by schoolmates and friends, but not using people’s names, even replacing human characters with animals to avoid relating with reality and upsetting anyone.

Why I was doing all the above things? Some people may say that I had too much free time, blaming for wasting time doing stupid hobbies instead of spending time to work for money. This was TRUE, unfortunately.

When friends were coming at me, I was showing my works (is this a good or bad behavior?). I was often praised so I continued to do same things (there are rumors that the friends were TOLD by my family to praise me whatever stupid things I do, to make me happy) instead of constructive critics to do something more useful. However few friends said that I am talented, my works should be published, sell a book, etc. But my parents NEVER encouraged me to do something productive or to charge money when someone ask me help. They were against making my name public to the world. They encouraged me to continue the creative hobbies on computer, promising that some day we will publish them in a book, but this never happened. Just showing them to our friends circle (note: they may wanted to give me a solitary occupation to stop me disturbing them, instead of letting me to have a social life).

During childhood, the only form of professional activity was helping my parents at their work. Nothing in my name.

My family installed internet connection in 2005, after we connected to neighborhood LAN. I was 16 years old, was a total surprise for me. For first time I was free to speak and make own friends, and play multiplayer games in LAN. In contrast with the family’s friends which were (told to) praising my works, the online friends criticized me for doing useless works, plus a lot of critics towards my parents, assimilating my family with North Korean regime, accusing my parents for being too conservative, keeping me behind technology, limiting my education, discouraging me to use internet properly and make a living, etc.

For the first time I realized what does mean a normal life and how bad is the regime of my family. But the internet connection means unlimited access to information and this allowed me to lead towards BUSINESS…

Note: someone commented why I got internet connection so late? There are rumors that was a way for my parents to limit / control my education and prevent me to interact freely with the world (why?), another rumor was to protect me from BAD things (example: porn websites), but actually they protected from a lot of GOOD things. We were spending more money on books and magazines “to educate me” than the cost of internet connection, not counting incomparable amount of educational material on the internet. Today even if I am legal age and I have full freedom of using internet, I never look for porn… simply because I hate porn!

Moving away from parents and starting a second life

In 2005 dad scandals made my mom to flee away. Most people thinks that divorce is a bad thing, but actually it was my chance to do things never imagined before. I also abandoned my parents and I don’t want to see them anymore. In 2007 I moved in another apartment to live alone, and being 18 years old I was looking for a job to support myself, meantime grandparents were visiting me regularly to bring food and paying utilities.

Grandparents continued to control my life as my parents did, supervising me all time outside home, not allowing me to interact with strangers, use phone, etc. They never gave me money so anything I wanted to buy I shall request them, effectively having control what to buy and what not.

But living alone allowed me to have a secret second life, violating grandparents rules, creating my own social life by inviting friends at home and leaving home without family consent, making money online, going shopping for first time, etc… things normal for a 10-year old but my grandparents made a huge scandal when they caught me doing such things at 20-year old.

My computer and internet was the only place where I could do what I want without being caught, so let’s make money online. I was not familiarized with freedom, despite that I had connection to internet since 2005, first 2 years I avoided to interact online with people outside of my town, as I shared computer with my dad and afraid that will upset him. After moving, in 2007-2008 I started looking for friends all over the country and playing games on international servers. Most of early overseas friends were met in gaming. I became fluent in english thanks to gaming. Since 2007 I started looking for ways to make money over internet, posting in forums under fake names getting mini-jobs that can be done without legal contract (to make sure that my family will not be aware), earning several hundred dollars in 1 year… Was not until 2009 to have a personal website.

Despite of having internet connection, I continued showing my works to friends by sending e-mails and instant messaging to each person. Sometimes I took a laptop with me when I visited friends, especially to ones with no internet connection, to show my works.

I sent emails to various companies, showing drawings made by me in AutoCAD, hoping to get an online part-time job. But they were looking for full-time employees which grandparents would not accept.

In 2009 grandparents offered me to open a bank account in their name to get paid for working online so they can withdraw and buy stuff. These idiots wants to manage my money! I refused, because had already a PayPal account, and due to this reason I keep my business secret, being afraid that they will take my money.

My first website – teoalida.webs.com – free hosting

Friends encouraged me to publish my works on internet, so friends (also potential business partners) to view my work anytime, also to access my works from friends’ computers when I visit them.

So… this is how I started this website, that has to represent my image!
(despite of fear that my family will cut my internet connection if they see what I did)

I choose to host my website on Webs.com free hosting, under address http://teoalida.webs.com. By 2012 I realized that this was a huge mistake, Webs.com lack SEO features and limited the growth of my website.

I made this stupid choice because I had friends with blogs hosted on Blogspot and WordPress, posting their diary and stupid stuff, personally I wanted something more professional, a WEBSITE with static pages rather than a BLOG with posts sorted by date. Later I saw numerous professional blogs. Still, blogs are good if they cover one topic, newsy websites updated regularly, while my website cover multiple topics.

I started website in April 2009, originally having 5 pages, with a small example of works:
– Home page, with a list of the following pages.
– Teoalida’s Housing (floor plans and 3D models of apartment blocks).
– Teoalida’s Palace (3D model in AutoCAD).
– Teoalida’s Cars (again 3D models in AutoCAD).
– Teoalida in The Sims 2 (house models built in a game).
By August 2009 my website was completed, with 10 pages.

The purpose of website was originally to show off my hobbies and artistic works to friends, NOT to promote services directly via website, instead I tried to get CAD design work in freelance websites where I linked my website for portfolio, without success in winning projects so I stopped.

Because too few people are interested in my works and floor plans of imaginary buildings (perhaps architecture students and companies hiring AutoCAD designers), I decided in late 2009 to add more pages, to get more traffic and increase website ranking. Pages writing about real world: Countries & Cities (now Housing Around the World) and Singapore HDB housing study which included dozens of real floor plans.

I constantly added new pages and more content on existing pages.

My first website with blue theme (2009-2011)
Left photo show my custom-made navigation bar vs Webs’ default navigation bar (right photo)

My first website with white theme (Jan-May 2012)

My first website after expanding navigation bar (since Jun 2012)
Was a good or bad idea?

Each page began with an introduction about myself, the first page was the “About Me” page itself… this became a TROUBLE as the website grew beyond its original purpose. Many visitors were not interested to see personal websites, personal stories, etc, this leaded a high bounce rate.

in early times I sucked at SEO, the visitor traffic was rising but Google sent the visitors in wrong pages and they quickly left (example: searching “Singapore 4-room floorplan” and landing in Apartment Design page, searching “100 sq m house plan” and landing in Singapore page).

Webs.com lacks SEO features, I could not set different page title than URL or META description, the pages were originally named to look best in the navigation bar. But in 2010 I got idea of a custom-made navigation bar, I could write anything as navigation links, and changed page title (which is URL too) to more SEO-friendly, as seen in below screenshots (example: Teoalida’s Cars > Car Design, Housing-Current > Apartment Design). Traffic went over 100 visitors per day and higher engagement ratio.

New website – teoalida.com – paid hosting and .com domain

Webs.com is one of the most-limited hosting services. See my own Webs.com Review. Beside lack of SEO features, free users get 500 MB monthly bandwidth (if you exceed bandwidth you warning messages to upgrade or you risk to be suspended, the actual suspension happens only if you exceed twice the limit, and last until end of month). My website reached again 100 daily visitors in January 2012 and exceeded these 500 MB). I upgraded the bandwidth to 1.5 GB in March… but in September 2012 I reached over 200 daily visitors and exceeded bandwidth once again. I had enough Webs Credits to buy 1GB bandwidth 3 more times, BUT… is this is the RIGHT thing to do?

In 2011 I bought domain name www.teoalida.com then realized that I cannot put it on Webs.com-hosted website unless I pay premium account. See also: a Funny chat with a IDIOT who blame me for not putting teoalida.com on Webs website!

In August 2012 I started to develop a new website based on WordPress platform, using domain name www.teoalida.com and hosted on 000webhost.com (free hosting with PHP support) but they suspended my website 3 times due to too high traffic and high CPU usage so in November I upgraded to PAID hosting hosting24.com. I was very happy with Hosting24 services, for just $4.84 per month my website was running with over 1000 daily visitors.

On the former website, the main landing pages were Singapore HDB Floor Plans (35% of total traffic) and Singapore BTO List (25%), all other pages were max 10%. The home page was the About Me page (because website was originally intended as personal portfolio) but it was landing page for just 3% of traffic (as 2012), mostly my friends or people who bookmarked the URL. This turned into a PROBLEM: many people reading articles about Singapore (60% of total visitors) though that my website is an encyclopedia or a real estate agency, being not interested in the person behind it, if he remember the URL and next day he simply type teoalida.webs.com, he will see the About Me page shows my portfolio, may go away thinking that typed wrong URL.

SOLUTION: for the new website I made About Me as a subpage, while on home page I put articles about Singapore real estate, to make home page main landing page and get ranking in Google, and after a year to put my architectural designs on home page, to do business. But architecture turned to be a very difficult business and poorly paid so I decided to keep articles about Singapore on home page forever.

Sub-websites:
In February 2013 I rebuilt The Sims 2 (a category with 53 posts) as sub-website, separate WordPress installation, with own banner and own menus. Same thing done in April 2013 for Car Database (3 pages, which grew to 30+ pages as 2016). Why? Because people looking for a car database are not interested in the rest of my works such as architecture and real estate. Someone who is interested in American cars may accidentally click the menu World > North America, which is a page about real estate, no cars.

The road to online business

My family was providing me all needs to be not necessary to work and have own money. Moreover they did not allowed me to have a job or earn money in my name so I was working for my parents instead. However there were few things that my parents refused to buy for me, this is why I was looking to earn my own money.

During childhood, I was doing the hobbies I liked and distributed the works freely via friends. Probably the most helpful work done were the city maps done in 2005-2007, which today I regret distributing freely. Were used also by companies, for commercial purposes, who shall pay the rights of use. Someone offered me money for rights to use the maps, but due to my family regime, although I could meet people (strangers) under parents’ supervision and get paid, my parents would not let the money in my hands, so I had no reason to charge money.

First money earned was in 2007, when Paypal allowed unverified accounts to send money (previously you could only receive money, was no reason to receive money if I cannot spend it). I went into freelance websites and forums, looking for work. Although my dominant activity was designing stuff in AutoCAD, it was a non-profit hobby, and the little money earned was from webdesign-related services. I was not designing websites, but rather being hired to add content in someone’s website, create backlinks, submit it to directories, translate articles, etc. Quite boring jobs. Paid-To-Click (BUX) sites brought some money too. Having no credit card, the PayPal money could be spent only online, and in 2008 I went shopping for first time.

When I made my own website in 2009 to publish my portfolio online, I wrote on home page (About me) “most of works are made for passion, but I am ready to work for you” and contact email below. But the potential customers were coming from Google in subpages and very few clicked the About me page to see my contact info. Only in 2012 I added on every page BIG RED messages with what services I offer, plus contact email in website banner. Only now customers started contacting me. But the business was still not successful, for example many people looking for house plans do not realize that I am CAD designer and I can work for them, they confuse my personal website with the websites who are collecting floor plans found in Google Images, they rely only on what they see on website, if they cannot find a suitable house plan at me, they go away instead of contacting me to design a house for them (and pay me for the architectural design service).

I attempted to make money from freelance websites, linking my portfolio website. I bid about 10 projects without winning any so I aborted it. In 2010 and 2011 I had almost no income, spending my time on AutoCAD hobby and playing games. I realized that making money online is difficult, my friends encouraged me to call authorities to take action against my family, so I can get a job. But they did not took any action.

Since 2006 I got also few legal job offers, but getting employed without family consent was impossible so I had to say NO to any job that could not be done from front of computer.

First major work done for a customer (opposite of works done from personal interest) was in 2011, an insurance company requested to expand my Hong Kong Public Housing Database by adding private housing estates. I made the mistake to work for free without agreeing about price. Only after I spent about 100 hours I decided to sell the database for $200 but the customer didn’t agreed to pay, so I kept the database for myself and after one year I posted for sale in Store for anyone else. PS: I don’t complain for the time spent. In 2011 I did not had many customers to work for, working in Excel is a pleasure and I made also the Singapore Housing Database since 2009 as hobby, without having any customer requesting to do this job.

The business success came in 2012 after I discovered the chat software in January 2012 (a MUST-HAVE for websites that sell products or offer services), allowing me to interact with website visitors and engaging them to request work from me, understanding market demands. After working for few people for free, I started charging money for services that takes more than 1 hour, but rarely get paid.

In 2012 an architect impressed by my 3D models of buildings invited me to collaboration and wanted to promote me in his directory of architects despite that I did not attended architecture university, but he put me on wrong track (read full story). I changed my page from “AutoCAD graphic design services” to “architectural design services”, making some money from this field too.

In 2012 I earned for first time a 4-digit sum, mostly from AutoCAD drawings made for Michael Lee.

The chat software helped me to understand business potential of another hobby, the Car Database. I spent a large amount of time transforming my hobby databases into a product usable for companies, and in 2013 my earnings were dominated by sales of car databases.

Moving to paid hosting and WordPress platform, expanding website content and doing SEO increased traffic from 100 daily visitors in early 2012 to 500 daily visitors in 2013. In late 2013 Google dropped my website from search results, traffic felt down to 150 daily visitors, people mislead me and distracting me from finding cause of problem (keyword stuffing) and only few months later I fixed it and restored traffic. In these months I read a lot of SEO articles, traffic rose to 800 daily visitors, especially in car database section. The situation became clear: making databases is more profitable than architecture, thanks to SEO and volume of sales (a database once made can be sold to multiple people, while a house design is paid only by the client for which it was designed).

In 2015 I discovered things done by my family and that they were lying me whole life, turned into psychological trauma and forced me to leave architecture business. In late 2014 I started expanding European car database from 20 to 40+ columns to sell at double price, also I revived another project started in 2009 with no commercial purpose, the Singapore Housing Database, these 2 projects finished in mid-2015 doubled my income.

My income doubled from year to year, reaching 5-digit sum in 2015, exceeding my parents salaries. Monthly earnings are variable, about 20x difference between poorest and richest month. Sales of databases growing faster than architecture, which produced just 10% of my income in 2015, I stopped promoting architecture business, it being a waste of time, when only 1 of 10 people contacting me is willing to pay for service.

Been psychologically traumatized in 2015 discovering what my family was actually doing and lied me whole life, also a huge scandal broke up in 2016 when my family figured out that I earned a large sum of money, my mom and dad done illegal stuff to gain access to my bank accounts, without success. Seems that living away from my parents don’t protect me from being abused.

After all this bullshit, my parents told me that allow me having a legal job, under some conditions. But for what reason I would be employed full-time if I am able to earn from my hobbies more money than salaries in my country?

Whenever authorities will take action against my family, so I can enjoy my life without conditions and restrictions, we will see…

Conclusion

My parents gave me high IQ and a computer at an early age, and I turned into a businessman earning more than parents in my 20s. But I could have been a businessman at much early age, if these idiots would have helped me instead of putting restrictions to make my life harder, and making me to suffer whole life from psychological trauma. Or at least, if I found chat software earlier and move my website from shitty Webs.com to paid hosting and WordPress platform earlier, I could be richer now.

Should I be thankful to my parents or blame them?

I wish to have another family, a family that help me improving my life rather than restricting it, continue my education, and live in a house with many people rather than living alone.

Jan 03

Etymology (meaning of my name)

When I was around 6 years old I made stories with a lot of invented names, friends asked me what is that, I liked how Teoalida sounded, so used the name for stories with myself. By 12 year old, everyone knew me as Teoalida.

My parents told me to never disclose real name over internet, so I signed all my products as Made by Teoalida. Sometimes in business is required the real name, but probably they are against me doing any kind of business.

I made the website in 2009 and launched Teoalida name/brand worldwide. Some friends said that was better to use real name in web domain name, but if I started as Teoalida, continue this way. What is the problem of using a business name different than real name? Using such unique name is at advantage in business.

Proof: in 2005 when I got internet connection, I did a google search and, surprisely, were 0 results for Teoalida name. In 2008 were still few results, only from the forum of my town. On all other forums I used generic names such as Somebody (for anti-search purposes), meantime a google search of my real name gave thousand results, hard to find me, also may be hard to spell for foreigners.

Some negative impact is due of using same name both for business and for local friends. I have unwanted popularity through neighborhood bad guys, sending me friend request on Facebook but I don’t want such friends in my business name.

Do you have any suggestions?

Jan 01

Website traffic stats

Do you want to advertise on my website and need demographic info?
Or just curious how many visitors I have and from which countries?

Here I publish the traffic statistics! Not only the number of daily / monthly visitors, but also the countries, Google searches and entrance page of visitors, so you can see what people are looking for and which pages have biggest contribution! Because, for example if you are an agent specialized in Executive Condominium you may want to advertise in List of EC page only.

The “Housing in Singapore” pages contribute with 60% of traffic, of which most people come for information prior buying a property, or after buying a property looking for a floor plan and renovation ideas. Thus real-estate ads have highest click ratio potential. If you are real estate agent, interior designer, or contractor, my website is the best advertising space. However, all types of ads are welcome except adult / porn.

Price for banner ad: $20 for housing-related ads, $10 for everything else (per month). Text links are also welcome at half price!

Traffic stats for last 1 year + Traffic stats for last month

For 2016 stats, please ask! I no longer waste time updating stats every month, because apparently nobody is interested how many visitors I have. The few advertisers I had, did not even checked Traffic Stats page.

Monthly reports (clickable links to PDF report)

April 2014 – 30715 visitors = 1024 daily (on 3-12 April multiple people shared and re-shared links on Facebook, I got additional 1000 LIKES and a traffic spike… this also boosted ranking in Google, from 550 daily visitors before getting additional LIKES to 740 daily visitors last 2 weeks)
May 2014 – 25469 visitors = 822 daily (Sale of Balance Flats in Singapore, boosted traffic to 800+ daily visitors)
June 2014 – 22962 visitors = 765 daily (note: Clicky got BUGGED in counting visitors, shows only 2409 in entire month, while the chart is showing 600-900 visitors per day, had to count manually day by day and make a sum.
July 2014 – 23763 visitors = 767 daily
August 2014 – 24796 visitors = 800 daily
September 2014 – 22286 visitors = 743 daily
October 2014 – 21741 visitors = 701 daily
November 2014 – 22461 visitors = 749 daily (Sale of Balance Flats in Singapore = boosted traffic)
December 2014 – 19399 visitors = 626 daily (school vacation in Singapore = lost 20% of traffic)
January 2015 – 24658 visitors = 795 daily
February 2015 – 23001 visitors = 821 daily
March 2015 – 25070 visitors = 809 daily
April 2015 – 28944 visitors = 965 daily (traffic spike 26 April – 1 May due of students sharing links on Facebook)
May 2015 – 29356 visitors = 947 daily (Sale of Balance Flats in Singapore = boosted traffic)
June 2015 – 24702 visitors = 823 daily (school vacation in Singapore)
July 2015 – 26964 visitors = 870 daily
August 2015 – 28915 visitors = 933 daily
September 2015 – 29299 visitors = 973 daily
October 2015 – 30622 visitors = 988 daily
November 2015 – 35375 visitors = 1179 daily (Sale of Balance Flats in Singapore = boosted traffic)

Old traffic stats (2013)

Current website was started in Aug 2012, but the “heavy” content has been added on Nov 2012. For Jan-Oct 2012 see the old website teoalida.webs.com/trafficstats.htm.
000webhost.com (FREE hosting) suspended my website 3 times during November, for high traffic, 2 times restored at midnight, 3rd time suspended for ever… since 1 December 2012 I am hosted by Hosting24.com ($4.84 per month) that guarantee no more problems. 4 days of website down caused loss of 2/3 of traffic, BUT as you can see, in one month it recovered, reached 300 daily visitors, exceeding original traffic level of 200 daily visitors!

November 2012 – 4958 visitors = 165 per day
December 2012 – 2855 visitors = 92 per day
January 2013 – 7733 visitors = 249 per day
February 2013 – 8017 visitors = 286 per day
March 2013 – 11002 visitors = 355 per day
April 2013 – 9884 visitors = 329 per day
May 2013 – 8475 visitors = 273 per day
June 2013 – 8552 visitors = 285 per day
July 2013 – 13580 visitors = 438 per day – On 15 July someone posted in a forum then people copied on Facebook… traffic from Google boosted with 50%, probably Google learned to track Facebook LIKES.
August 2013 – 15241 visitors = 492 per day
September 2013 – 15351 visitors = 512 per day

The huge peak on 12 Nov is because TheOnlineCitizen posted me on Facebook, sending 800 visitors in 4 hours.
The drop since mid-April 2013 is because of some changes in WordPress, Google add the title from the first post in SEO ranking. and since April I rotated posts and put at top of page a post with not so-good title. No changes in WordPress, was a BUG on my website. I was not aware of this until ~30 May 2013, solved on 20 June by reinstalling entire website, traffic re-started rising.

Since October 2013 I am experiencing problems in Google ranking causing massive fluctuations of traffic. A drop to 150 daily visitors in October then rise back to 500 daily visitors in January and fall again to 150 daily visitors few days later.
I will post new screenshots after the traffic remain constant over 1 full month.

How much bandwidth this website is eating?

See Bandwidth-Stats.png.

The old website, hosted on Webs.com free hosting, was using over 2 GB monthly bndwidth at its peak in October 2014 (230 daily visitors), this 2 GB included HTML codes only, excluding template (it was provided by Webs.com thus not counting in bandwdith) and images (all hosted on third-party websites, Imageshack, Photobucket).

This website, made using WordPress platform and hosted on Hosting24 since December 2012, used initially 10-20 GB monthly bandwidh, with images still hosted on third-party websites. Moving images on own server starting from July 2013 raised bandwidth usage to 100 GB monthly (500 daily visitors).

Google penalty that was October 2013 to March 2014 reduced traffic to 25% and bandwidth use to 50 GB monthly.

The Facebook madness in April 2014 raised bandwidth usage to a record of 240 GB in April month and 160 GB in next months (800 daily visitors).

Image optimization in August 2014, creating thumbnails for all floor plan images in HDB Floor Plans page (the most visited page), reduced page size from 30 to 10 MB, and overall bandwidth was reduced to about 90 GB per month.

What do I see about you when you visit my website

I use Clicky.com to monitor traffic, and THIS is what I see. Operating system, browser, what pages do you open and what links do you click. However, I am NOT checking what every visitor is clicking. For what reason I would waste time checking 800 visitors per day? What I am interested is to see what pages gets most traffic, bounce ratio for every page, etc, this for statistical purposes, and for optimizing my website.

Additionally I use Zopim chat software, when you message me, a Google Talk window pops up and I see THIS: your IP, city, country and page URL.

Seeing this info is for your benefit, for improving customer service. For example, I get often questions from visitors who do not tell me what they are asking about, and I seeing visitor country and the page where he is looking, is useful to provide a relevant answer. But I may fail in confusion in case of people overseas or using proxy, as seen in this chat.

Some people may consider this an invasion of privacy and will quit my website.

For your info: ANY website owner is theoretically capable to see such things. Your phone company is also logging all numbers you call, and your internet service provider is logging all sites you access, emails you send (time, date and address only, email content is not logged). If you do not agree, then please disconnect from internet and turn off phone, and communicate only face-to-face.
In most countries the internet providers are required by law to keep the logs for 6 months, so in case someone report a serious crime such as bank fraud, the police can track down the criminals. You can type an IP on sites like www.ripe.net and www.arin.net and get ISP name who own the IP. But to get name and address of particular IP you need to go to ISP, which for privacy reasons should not disclose this private info to anyone except police in case of a criminal investigation. This does NOT mean that a human is monitoring you all time, what sites do you visit, etc, but only if you commit a serious crime.

Stop being paranoid and think that over 1 billion people in the world use internet every day and are not hurt in any way.
The internet is designed to be monitored… for purpose of protecting you, otherwise it would have been full of cyber criminals freely to to sell non-existent products on eBay and steal your money from credit card, who would be never caught.

WARNING for people who think that I get rich from this website

Having 1000+ daily visitors doesn’t mean that I earn $1000+ per day. As you can see from above screenshots, about 60% are Singaporeans looking for HDB-related stuff. They are not interested in my architecture design services. Just about 10% are coming via House Design / Apartment Design pages showing the services that I offer, of them the majority are just browsing the internet for free floor plans, without being interested in my services, some people are contacting me for my services but not everyone is willing to pay.

Having in architecture business more than 1 paying customer for month means LUCK. Of course I have additional income from selling stuff and non-architecture design jobs. Yes I have customers, the website is money-marking, but not enough to live alone. I am still dependent by family money.

Nov 30

SCAM for web designers

I rarely get emails regarding webdesign. The customer gave me link to a website http://www.agroamerica.com but he put some dots after it to make link not clickable. I would have not been aware that this is a SCAM if I would not have accidentally copied his link including the dots in browser, thus went into Google Search rather than directly on website, and saw numerous blogs reporting “Agroamerica SCAM”. However, I continued to reply at email, playing role of a naive guy (scam baiting), to see how the scam is working: he don’t even ask for portfolio instead is goes directly to giving me his credit card full of money and request me to pay half of money to person who provide content, then probably will lock the card or chargeback the money, leaving me in loss.

 


Scammer:

Good Day

I’m John,am hearing impaired.i would love to know if you can handle website design for a new company and also if you do you accept credit cards ?? kindly get back to me ASAP so i can send you the job details.

Regards
John Wharf

 


Me:

Hi there, I may be able to help you, but may I know how did you found my email address?

 


Scammer:

Thanks for your swift response and i got your contact from google when i was searching for a web designer

Here is the job details

I have small scale business which i want to turn into large scale business now it located in TN and the company is based on importing and exporting of Agriculture products such as Kola Nut, Gacillia Nut and Cocoa so i need a best of the best layout design for it. Can you handle that for me ?. so i need you to check out this site but i need something more perfect than this if its possible .http://www.agroamerica.com.… the site would only be informational, so i need you to give me an estimate based on the site i gave you to check out, the estimate should include hosting and i want the same page as the site i gave you to check out and i have a private project consultant, he has the text content and the logos for the site.

Note:

I want the same number of pages with the example site i gave you to check excluding videos and blogs. I want only English language, I don’t have a domain yet but i want the domain name as topfarmproduce.com, you will be updating the site for me. i will be proving the images, logos and content for the site. i want the site up and running before ending of next month.

My budget is $4000 to $8000
get back to me with:

(1) an estimate, (2) your cell phone number, (3) And will like to know if you are the owner?

Regards

John wharf

 


Me:

I really want to know more how did you “got your contact from google when i was searching for a web designer”

Although I do have little experience in designing simple WordPress websites, I never promoted myself as webdesigner, my primary job is architectural design services (this is why using Teoalida Design in email name). I checked Agroamerica and it looks a simple website that can be done with WordPress + a responsive theme for few hundred dollars. If your budget is really $4000-8000, I assume that you want a website more unique with custom coding, in this case I will ask my webdesign partner to do the job for you. So do you want WordPress or custom CMS? in both cases I can made website for you to be able to update it yourself.

 


Scammer:

Thanks for your response, I am okay with the estimate everything sound good and i’m ready to make payment now with my credit card, I understand the content for this site would be needed so work can start asap but i will need a Little favor from you and the favor is that I will send you my credit card to charge for the sum of $6,450.00 plus 3% Cc company charges, You will deduct $3,250.00 as deposit for the design of the website plus extra $200.00 as a tip for handling perfect work for me and you will send the remaining $3,000.00 to the project consultant that has the text content and the logo for my website so once he receive the $3,000.00 he would send the text content and logo needed for my website to you so work can start asap,Sending of funds would be after money clears into your account and You will be charging my card for remaining balance upon completion of work.

Kindly get back to me so we can proceed with payment asap

Regards

John wharf

 


Me:

What? are you sending your physical credit card? instead of making payment via Paypal or bank transfer? How do I charge money from someone else card?

 


 

I haven’t heard any reply from him after this.

Oct 06

Other CAD Design

Do you though that I work only in architecture? WRONG! I can do almost anything in AutoCAD! I am often working in architecture because I posted few dozens house models on website. But here I show the floor plan and 3D design of the… largest salt mine in Europe! See real photos from mine. Designed in 2008 for fun / hobby.

Feb 17

Contact

Are you a robot crawling emails to send v!agra, SEO offers or other crap? Email me spamsucks@teoalida.com

Feel free to contact me if you have any enquiry about AutoCAD design, architecture, real estate, research, data mining and analysis, or any other field covered by articles of this website.
sales @ teoalida.com

You can also keep me as friend in Yahoo Messenger or Google Talk, ID “teoalida17” for both.
You can also post comments on any of the pages of website, but if you post a question, don’t forget to come back to check if anyone answered.
Don’t contact me via Facebook, I get lots of friend requests from strangers and spammers so I don’t answer to anyone.

Email me only during my sleep time or if you have files that cannot be send via chat.
I reply to EVERY email next morning, but since I rarely hear replies from people after I reply them, I believe that my emails go sometimes to SPAM / JUNK folder.

If you email me and do not receive any reply in 12 hours, check your Spam / Junk folder, and visit website again during European daytime / Asian evening-night to contact me via LIVE CHAT.
I stay online on chat every day 10-14 hours except when sleeping or out of home.

I hate disappointing people looking for a free advice, or even lose paying customers, due of email anti-spam filters.
Use the LIVE CHAT whenever is possible.

Looking to buy a property in Singapore?
HDB, EC, private condo, industrial, etc? Contact my partner agent:
William Chui

FAQ

Zopim live chatI created website in 2009 to showcase my hobbies, I accidentally discovered zopim.com chat software in 2012 and added it on my website to talk with visitors, make friends with similar interests, get feedback about my hobbies and works, exchange information, etc. The chat helped me also to get hired by people and get paid to do various works, or to understand market demands and offer suitable products, turning my hobbies into money-making business.

Do you stay at computer all time to greet visitors and answer questions?

NO! The chat software is greeting visitors automatically. Only if you type a message in chat, I get sound alert of incoming chat, if I am working at computer I answer in max 5 seconds, but if I am not at computer, I try to come as fast I can to answer you. Of course this is not always possible, 5-10% of chats remain unanswered. But you can always leave your email address where you answer your questions if I can’t answer you in time.

Do you get paid to chat with people?

NO! I offer consultation via chat voluntarily, I am NOT employed, affiliated with any government or company, or get paid “to help people”. I am independent, this is my personal website and only YOU can pay if the consultation or services offered helped you!

This is valid especially for people from Singapore, every day about 10 of them were contacting me for real estate consultation until I disabled chat greeting for Singapore to escape from this hell. If consultation with me made you to decide to buy a $500,000 property, I appreciate if you can donate me few dollars.

DONATE

While chat consultation is free, AutoCAD design services, research and database services are not free. This is how I make a living. I have the right to refuse to do your project if you do not pay my given price, do not get angry and threat me, as this Indian did.

Some people treat me like a paid customer service for example getting angry if I ask them too questions, as a friendly exchange of knowledge, or getting angry if I do not know answer of their questions (example “you are paid by this website to help people, why you are not answering my questions?).

How many people contact you?

As 2015, website gets 800 daily visitors (see traffic stats). With chat greetings set at 3-5 minutes, about 20-30 people would message me. Some people feel disturbed if chat pop-up and greet, but 80% of conversations are started by people replying after automatic greeting. Greeting increase conversion ratio, without greeting people would not even notice that there is a chat service available!

In 2014 I disabled chat greeting for Singapore (because these people often ask me info without paying for any service) and in 2015 I disabled also for architecture pages (because I lost interest in architecture due to rising business of databases), so now I get about 10 people contacting me daily. I try to optimize further to be contacted only by customers.

Warning for kids

Website audience is mostly adults, but sometimes I get contacted by kids (idiots) who thinks that website purpose is for chatting and they message me random questions just “to chat with someone”, inviting schoolmates to do the same, coming in groups of 5+ (in normal circumstances I don’t have more than 2 people on chat at same time), distracting me from doing my work or from chatting with potential customers. Example: 12-year kids from Singapore and kids from United States visiting the page about North Korea from school to ask stupid questions and inviting schoolmates to do the same..

This is NOT a chat service that you can use when you are bored and want to chat with someone.
This is a customer service primarily intended to be used by people interested in my products (databases) and services such as AutoCAD design & architecture.
However, you are welcome to ask anything about any fields covered by website, most questions can be answered in few minutes and do not cause disturbance to my daily work… you are advised to NOT talk too much if you are not going to buy any product or service.

Should I post a comment on website or send you an email?

If you have a question or enquiry about my services and need immediate answer from me, use LIVE CHAT.

If you have comments about articles shown on website, post a public comment.

If you have files to send me, send an email. I reply to all emails, but only in half of cases I get back a reply. Some people reported via chat that are not receiving emails from me, or that received in SPAM folder.

You can also ask questions via comments, this will allow other people to answer your question, but there is always a risk for me to not notice your comment: Every time someone leave a comment I get an email notification, but I get every day SPAM comments left by robots, and if you leave comment after a spammer, I receive a new email notification that appear over spammer one while displaying name of the spammer one, and I risk to delete both emails without noticing that second one was a human comment.

Please post comments also at other people’s comments. Don’t leave all communication to be between me and thousands visitors of website.

Do not post comments in Contact page!
Please post comments in the relevant page, for example house builders in Philippines post your comment in House Plans page or Philippines page, while for questions about Singapore SERS programme post your comment in SERS page.

Dec 14

HDB statistics, facts & figures

HDB built slightly over 1 million units since its founding in 1960 (the 1 millionth flat was completed in December 2010), SIT built about 23,000 units between 1927 and 1960, JTC and HUDC built few thousand units between 1960s and 1980s, making a total of about 1.1 million public housing units built in the history of Singapore, as 2016.

Of these 1.1 million units built, 992,742 units are in use at 31 March 2016, about 130,000 dwelling units being demolished (clearance of rental blocks and SERS), converted (2 units joined into 1 unit), privatized (HUDC), etc.

What other statistical data would you like to see on this page? Leave a comment and tell me!

HDB dwelling units per town and flat type, as 31 March 2015 HDB dwelling units per town, by year
HDB achievements since 1960 HDB dwelling units by flat type, per year
All charts are screenshoted from HDB Statistics .xls, for exact figures see Excel file.

According HDB Annual Report 2015, out of 3.9 million resident population (Singapore Citizens and Permanent Residents, as June 2013), 3,217,400 live in HDB apartments, this means 82% (non-residents are not allowed to own HDB apartments but they can live in apartments owned by a resident spouse, also they are allowed to own apartments in private condominiums taller than 6 storeys but not landed houses or apartments in low-rise condominiums). This means average family size of 3.42 residents per apartment and 27.56 sqm per person. For comparison, in 1968 were in average 6.2 people per apartment (average flat size I estimate around 40 sqm).

Many HDB owners are renting rooms or entire flat to foreigners, some HDB owners are citizens married with foreigners, HDB never provide official statistics about how many non-residents live in HDB apartments.

According Yearbook of Statistics 2010, Singapore population including non-residents is 5076700 living in 1180500 dwelling units (HDBs, condos, private flats, landed houses, others), of which 76.3% are HDBs, this means a nationwide average of 4.30 people per dwelling unit, if the average would be same for HDB, it would mean 22 sqm per person (no newer statistics available for non-residents).

Average household size for each flat type and race can be seen on www.singstat.gov.sg > Key Indicators and Sample Household Survey. You can see that households with 6 or more persons represent 10% of Chinese households and 23% of Malay households.

Home ownership of HDB flats reached the peak of 94% in 2002, then slowly felt down to 90% in 2011.

HDB dwelling units under management, as 31 March 2016

Biggest HDB town: Bedok during 1990s, Tampines in 1996-1999 and Jurong West since 2000. Either Sengkang or Tampines will take the lead around 2020.

 

Town 1-Room 2-Room 3-Room 4-Room 5-Room E / MG SA Total
Ang Mo Kio 1318 3506 24237 13682 5654 490 281 49168
Bedok 2530 2286 22639 20398 10390 2714 234 61191
Bishan 396 5 2357 9359 5716 1660 171 19664
Bukit Batok 385 242 10278 13851 4833 2732 177 32498
Bukit Merah 4731 5777 15965 15369 9477 44 469 51832
Bukit Panjang 223 539 3678 16699 10425 3381 380 35325
Bukit Timah 0 35 441 920 682 380 97 2555
Central Area 2075 1316 4739 3529 903 9 0 12571
Choa Chu Kang 355 878 2137 22485 15293 4762 515 46425
Clementi 474 716 11947 8593 2915 619 0 25264
Geylang 1044 3214 11705 9607 3591 830 239 30230
Hougang 532 917 10318 25238 10844 4310 365 52524
Jurong East 352 418 7006 8188 5925 1871 137 23897
Jurong West 540 1732 12659 28457 21569 6507 639 72103
Kallang / Whampoa 4401 2530 13321 10178 5392 504 38 36364
Marine Parade 0 1350 3037 1798 1677 0 0 7862
Pasir Ris 176 326 491 11641 9379 7460 181 29654
Punggol 871 1412 3639 19631 14612 1126 456 41747
Queenstown 575 3246 14210 8794 3972 354 353 31504
Sembawang 321 768 349 8447 7556 2870 0 20311
Sengkang 685 1479 3341 29405 23134 4462 541 63047
Serangoon 272 324 4543 10231 3753 2365 0 21488
Tampines 775 740 13107 28631 17312 5846 649 67060
Toa Payoh 1168 3654 15122 9756 6017 854 300 36871
Woodlands 1603 1284 6348 27859 19639 6191 855 63779
Yishun 1038 1200 14530 28155 9169 2741 705 57538
Total 26840 39894 232144 390901 229829 65082 7782 992472
Average flat size 31 45.26 68.03 96.31 118.47 144.71 ~40 155.61
Final results Average flat size – 93.87 sqm

Total population (Jun 2014) – 5469700 people
Resident population – 3900000 people
HDB resident population – 3213000 people (82%)
Average resident household size – 3.42 people
(27.56 sqm per capita)

Despite of shrinking flat sizes in late 1990s, average flat size has increased until 2005, reaching about 95 sqm, thanks to demolition of small 1/2/3-room flats built in 1960-1970s and building 90-140 sqm flats, also due of the Main Upgrdadin Programme that add 5 sqm utility rooms. After 2005 average flat size is slowly falling down because HDB stoped supply of Executive, reduced supply of 5-room, and reintroduced 1-room, 2-room and 3-room flats.

BTO flats launched since 2011 and completed from 2015 onward are about 80 sqm in average, for comparison the flats build in mid-1990s were about 120 sqm in average, a world record for public housing.

Sources:
– SingStat for the population
– HDB Annual Reports for the number of flats (units)
– HDB Resale Flat Prices database for 2008-2013 (149930 records) for estimating average flat sizes

The average flat size is a bit inaccurate because the database include only sold flats, there is no info about the size of rental 1/2-room flats, and does not include flats built last 5 years which are under minimum occupation period, including them For 2005 average flat size by type I used resale transactions with lease year pre-2005.

SingStat also show population living in condos and landed houses, in case you are interested, but unfortunately there are NO detailed statistics for about number of private housing breakdown by type.

Excel files with additional statistics

HDB Annual Reports.xls – 1990-2000 + 1962 annual reports digitalized into Excel by me:

Source of data: HDB Annual Reports 1994-1996 (available on archive.org) and 2000-present (available on HDB InfoWEB even if they are no longer in Annual Reports page, but doing a Google search you could still find the direct link to files still hosted on HDB server, they were deleted at October 2015 website redesign). I was not able to get 1997-1999 because since 1997 HDB provided in PDF format instead of HTML page, and archive.org did not cached PDF files.

I added 1990-1999 thanks to KZ, a friend who during school vacation of June and December 2015 went in National Library and photoed the annual reports for me for digitization. He photoed 1960s to 1980s annual reports too and I may digitize them too when I have free time. These pre-1990 annual reports have a list of about 100 HDB Estates. The current HDB towns appeared in AR 1990 (20 towns plus 11 other estates) and was revised in AR 1999 to 23 towns and 4 estates then 23 towns and 3 estates by abandoning Lim Chu Kang.

If you want photos of annual reports to read them yourself, you can buy them!

HDB Statistics.xls – Excel file compiled by me, containing:
– Annual Reports 2000-2016
– Number of dwelling units by town and flat type, table and chart
– Number of dwelling units by town and year, table and chart
– Number of dwelling units by flat type and year, table and chart
– Statistics for calculation of the average flat size along history
– HDB achievements since 1960
– Resale market statistics
Please leave your comments about my work!

HDB flat size statistics based on resale transactions

I copied the listings from HDB Resale Flat Prices e-service (April 2008 – December 2013) in Microsoft Excel for purpose of making statistics. Results:

– As country level: the average flats size is 97.41 sqm (average of ~149930 transacted units).
– As town level: Central Area (most built in 1970s) have the smallest flats, 72.24 sqm (average of 998 units) while Pasir Ris New Town (built between 1988 and 1996) have the biggest flats, 123.38 sqm (average of 5184 units).
– As neighborhood level: Pasir Ris 2XX neighborhood have the biggest flats, 132.36 sqm (average of 694 units), Pasir Ris 5XX have 129.25 sqm (average of 875 units), Pasir Ris 6XX have 127.17 sqm (average of 521 units), Choa Chu Kang 5XX have 126.39 sqm (average of 607 units), Tampines 3XX have 121.79 sqm (average of 1129 units).
– As five-year period: 1991-1995 have the biggest flats, 124.48 sqm (average of 11398 transacted units).

Note that the average size of resold flats is slightly bigger than the real average flat size, because the big and <10 year old flats tends to change their owners more frequently than the small old flats owned mainly by elderly, also some of the small flats are rented from HDB rather than owned, so they never appear in resale transactions.

The full Excel database of resale transactions can be purchased from my Store.

HDB flats breakdown by floor area HDB flats size over years

Note

I noticed many visitors coming here by searching things like “total number of HDB blocks in Singapore“. HDB provide official numbers of units but not of blocks. Blocks can be ONLY counted manually.
Do we should also count the 2-storey shophouse that contains no residential units, only commercial units (flats accessible from shop entrance)? Do we should also count under-construction blocks and blocks awaiting demolition? Do we should count multi-storey carparks and precint pavilions too?

According Database of HDB blocks, there are about 9800 residential HDB buildings in Singapore (not including carparks, pavilions, but including shophouses).
Note that the database is, in the current version, NOT ACCURATE… being made for personal curiosity without being paid for, with limited time available for voluntary jobs. Some under construction blocks are counted, others not. Some demolished blocks are counted too.

I will provide detailed statistics with higher accuracy if someone will pay my time required to make them.

First payment came in May 2015, reason for which I improved database accuracy significantly.
According the July 2015 edition of database, there are 9503 blocks with known number of units, total 980108 units, giving an average of 103 units per block.

Number of units in private condominiums, executive condominiums, square meters of office and retail space, can be seen in https://www.ura.gov.sg/uol/media-room/news/2017/Apr/pr17-30 and https://www.ura.gov.sg/uol/-/media/User%20Defined/URA%20Online/media-room/2017/pr17-06e1.pdf

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