Sunday, September 30, 2007

[blogrolls] unreciprocated visits and culling

There are three bloggers I've just noticed, with alarm, in the last 100 visitors, whom I haven't visited in return. As this is the first day I've really looked at referrals, it worries me.

In my case, the total blogging time is apportioned this way:

# Doing the mail, which includes comments to my sites and responding to those;

# Dealing with Blogpower issues;

# Following up MyBlogLog visitors who have recently come in;

# Preparing and posting, which takes a fair amount of time;

# Doing maintenance and updating things;

# Spending the remaining available time visiting one of the rolls - for example, today was Purple; yesterday was Blogpower and White; tomorrow is Maroon.

Visiting other sites, of course, takes up an inordinate amount of time. I have a total of 208 bloggers on my rolls but a breakdown of the last 100 visits here in the past few hours reveals:

# 33 Blogger visits [but about 20 returning multiple times]

# 23 Unknown or miscellaneous

# 19 Google Searches

# 15 Google Images

# 6 Blogger Navbar visits

# 4 Technorati

On a weekday it might be different but still - there are vastly more on the rolls than are visiting. I think almost noone would begrudge time spent when there is some sort of return on it. So posting interesting posts on a variety of topics seems productive, in terms of non-blogger visits.

Visiting other sites is where the problem is. What does it give back? Well, with a small proportion, it is friendship and camaraderie; with a wider circle it is learning new things and seeing new angles. But does visiting beget visiting?

The major bloggers are a mixed bag. With DK, Mr. E and some others, it is certainly friendship. But with many of the others, it seems highly unproductive. They're not saying anything DK or Mr. E aren't and yet they don't even acknowledge our existence.

One [now major] blogger told me a year ago that there was hardly any point being on a particular superstar's roll because he might have three referrals from there in the week - it was a bit like Google ads. People generally go to the Big Boys to see what they have to say, not to get into dialogue with fellow visitors or to hit the sidebar blogrolls. Generally.

I often look down 50 to 60 comments and am amazed that there is virtually no communication between the commenters themselves, except someone attacking the blogger and another commentator defending him. Eyes are generally lifted upwards and the commenter is seeking the attention of the major blogger or else just making his erudite point and going.

Is that an unfair summation?

Yet a sidebar link is a sidebar link and it helps with the Technorati. Again - is that ranking so important in the scheme of things? If I culled my blogrolls to a maximum of 50, excluding Blogpower, [and I don't intend to], it would kill many links back to me and therefore my "authority" with Technorati but would it kill my overall readership [including through a Reader] or linking from other sites?

How much do you use other people's sidebars, in other words?

Would it have that great an effect in any day - maybe a 40 to 50 drop in visits - and could the time saved visiting be used more productively in wider general reading, better posts and more quality visits to blogfriends, thereby resulting in more traffic anyway?

I suppose the chip on my shoulder is that I hate wasting time. I hate wastage of any kind but wasting someone else's time is a major crime in my book. Is it a waste of time running a big blogroll or is that the engine room of a blogger's blog?

[memo to the birds] winter cometh

Baht At is not enamoured of birds on a wire when they are sparrows [which birds are yours, Mattie Wardman?]:

Where are all the birds? Jumping up and down on my sodding phoneline it seems!

This feeder seems easy enough to construct ...

However, Mutterings and Meanderings notes, concerning swallows:

Swallows are, I think, my favourite birds. I love everything about them: their first appearance, swooping low over the fields, signalling that summer’s around the corner; their cream chests and rosy cheeks; the athleticism of the adults in their aerial arcs; the cherubic babies with their wide mouths in an ever-present grin.

But this ridiculous hotchpotch of weather has conned some couples into breeding again, leaving it dangerously late for their brood to build up the strength for their long journey to Africa.

... but I like this one a bit better and might construct it.

In the North, we had lots of bluetits and I loved putting the orange netting bags of nuts outside the window for them to come and peck at, even if they did peck the bag to bits and fight each other for a place.

Here's an account of someone else who likes them too.

Now, over here in the fSU, little birds often come to my balcony window and I'd dearly like to put a bag of nuts out there again or some sort of feeder but where to buy such things? Maybe I can make one.

[blogburst] and other remunerative schemes

Would you trust this man?

Longrider draws our attention to a worrying scheme:

If you are a blogger who is keen on getting more exposure, then you may well be interested … On the downside, some of the early criticisms still stand. The first is remuneration.

Intellectual property rights is next in the licensing scheme:

… you grant to Pluck and its affiliates a non-exclusive, worldwide, royalty-free, license to reproduce, distribute, make derivative works of, perform, display and disclose the Work …

Little bloggers, for whom this post is intended, are not into this stuff and may not fully understand it. They might see $1500 and think how good that looks. My comment at Longrider's was:

This needs to be read carefully. On the face of it, it’s a good idea but signing away intellectual property rights is self-actualizing, as they know.

If you’re not much chop as a blogger, it won’t matter all that much but if you are good, then you’ll get exposure and you’ve signed to them so they reap the benefit without any legal obligation to remunerate.

In short, it’s a wnak [excuse my French].

[sackerson] a little off theme

Sackerson, at Bearwatch, has to be one of the best bloggers around and how he's not in the Top 200 I don't know. Don't necessarily judge by this off-theme post. Here are some other posts to peruse:

A light post on how much money we need; but this one is far more his bread and butter.

Sackerson would be embarrassed by this slightly OTT rap, as you'll glean form his tone but I care not - I know a good blog when I read one.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

[strange stats] referrals breakdowns

I wasn't going to post again tonight but something came up to make me question the essence of what I'm doing with my blog.

First of all, the chart you see on percentage breakdown of country visits is interesting because in the morning, these are roughly the percentages, with the U.S. N1 and the UK N2. However, in the evening, that is reversed.

That's not the really intriguing thing though.

Have you ever stopped and analysed your referrals, i.e. the sites each visitor has just come from, as distinct from the visitor him/herself?

I just did it for the first time and it is both intriguing and disappointing. Given that these are referrals only, it's possible to guestimate that within the last 100 uniques, only about 20 are from visiting fellow bloggers. A quick check of MyBlogLog, dividing the total faces by the number of hundred visitors in the day, shows that it's a fair figure.

So, extrapolating over the day, only about 30% of my blogroll is actually visiting me, which gives the lie to the notion that bloggers simply visit each other in some sort of incestuous society. This has implications for Blogpower.

If it's true, then most bloggers are not reciprocating visits, i.e. they're welcoming them but not returning themselves.

So if we say that 30 visits in each 100 come from fellow bloggers, where do the other 70 come from? An analysis shows that many come from Google searches, Technorati, Bloglines and the like - about 35%, which leaves 35% unaccounted for.

This evening I've noticed Google Images as a constant referrer - i.e. someone is following a keyword, then hitting an image which is heading a page on which my site appears. But here's the thing - one or two of those images are mine, from my own private stock, used in the post but not linked back to Google.

This suggests that Google is trawling through posts and then using images from that post to display on its front page. Not that I'm complaining, of course, Mr. Google.

Is that sort of thing happening to you?

[blogfocus saturday] info you vitally needed

1. The Periodic Englishman headed this post on his cricket blog: "Learn some manners, you uppity burger" and thus had me in immediately.

There is just nothing I can say or do that seems to make any difference. I've thrown food up to it, waved, smiled, said good morning, whistled and made mooing noises. Not a flicker. Mooing paid spectacular dividends one time in France, you know, when I passed a very enjoyable few minutes in conversation with a receptive, and polite, cow. We just mooed at each other, over and over again. Total result. But this cow (in the picture) is having none of it. Hmm. It's starting to get me down, actually.

There's even a YouTube connected with this matter.

2. Andrew K. Brown lists some of Our Ken's achievements:

He [Ken] goes on to point out that his period in office has seen the numbers of new homes rise from 17,000 a year in 2000 to 28,000 last year (which exceeded the target that Ken had set in 2004, something that many saw as ambitious).

It also talks about tackling homelessness and overcrouding and sets out the structures that Ken expects to deliver the strategy. He also makes it clear he expects every part of the capital to contribute. We’ve seen before that housing is political, and locally that here in Lewisham there’s a commitment to meeting the targets.

3. Moggy brings us the latest about The Cat and that weigh-in:

I haven't posted anything lately about how The Cat is doing with his weight loss. It's been sort of up and down and not much down. This morning he was 28.6. At least it's not 30 still. I'm going to try to find something to give him more exercise. Even the pets today do not get the exercise they once did.

Quote: “Even overweight cats instinctively know the cardinal rule: when fat, arrange yourself in slim poses.” - John Weitz

4. Maalie requires you to don your philosophical thinking caps here concerning Pascal's Wager:

We can consider the consequences upon death for each of these situations.

Situation 1: God exists and you believe in Him

Consequence: you may surely expect to go to heaven

Situation 2: God does not exist, and you believe in Him

Consequence: nothing, but you are deluded and you waste time and effort on Earth

Situation 3: God exists and you do not believe in Him

Consequence: you burn in hell for eternity!

Situation 4: God does not exist and you do not believe in Him

Consequence: nothing.

In summary, the worst that could happen to a believer is nothing; the worst that could happen to an atheist is eternal damnation.

There are many well-known flaws in the logic of Pascal’s Wager that are listed at this website.

5. Daily Propaganda's brand new Mac site is in the building but he hit a few snags and here he returns and explains:

Have discovered what has been causing all of my hardware failures - the computer was overheating (I think the fans got a little clogged). But in the process, I had another hard drive failure (it seems when they get hot...). Also, a graphics card melted - literally. But no worries - the website is now installed on a brand new computer (well, my newest). This should improve things a little.... Need to install the gallery and blogging software again.

6. Robert Sharp reflects on the anomalies of colour and the paradoxes of life:

The paradox is that white people spend money getting a tan to make them look browner, while brown people spend buy these creams to make themselves whiter. The grass is always greener, yet equally cancerous, on the other side of the fence…

Other beauty paradoxes I have noticed: Hair straighteners for those with curly locks, sold next to hair curlers/rollers for the straight locked.

Oh yes, and of course: Women in the supermarket who put make-up, and make-up remover, into their basket… without so much as a bat of an eyelid to disturb their mascara.

7. Peteris Cedrins brings us the news on the tensions on Baltic Unity Day:

On Baltic Unity Day, I would suggest a meditation on what unity means, in this sense: sameness and homogenization aren't exact synonyms of unity. I can offer qualified support to the demonstrators in Rīga because I think Latgallian ought to be taught -- dialects are part of the living language and Latgallian is one of our language's roots, and a thick one at that. But the Language Law already stipulates that "the Latvian State ensures the preservation, protection and development of the Latgallian literary language as a historical variant of the Latvian language."

8. Roger Thornhill closes this evening with that story of the nice, kind policemen and the altruist:

A good samaritan is not just arrested, but brutally so on the M67.

Graeme Deacon was on the M67 near Hyde, Manchester, when he saw the accident on the opposite carriageway. He crossed over and helped the driver to safety. Then a second car drove into the back of the first and caught fire. Mr Deacon helped to free the young driver. Police arrived and offered to drive him to his vehicle. But Mr Deacon said: “The carriageway was empty. I could have crawled across on my hands and knees. There was absolutely no risk. A police officer said, ‘You’ll wait as long as it takes, whether it’s five minutes or two hours. You’ll stay there.’ I went to walk off and three of them pushed me face down in the gravel, hit the back of my legs with a baton and handcuffed me. One said, ‘Shut up or I’ll spray you with CS gas’.”

This is an example of when a fence panel is slid in place between the fence posts we are now surrounded by.

On that note, I wish you a good night and hope to see you next Wednesday evening again.

[tongue twisters] best of icelandic business

As the header suggests, the idea with this post is to say the names aloud to yourself after a whisky or eight. That's all - the story's actually quite banal:

Hannes Smarason and Jon Asgeir Johannesson, CEO of the Baugur group will both be sitting on the board of Straumur-Burdaras Investmentbank after FL group bought a 24% share.

This brings three of the most powerful men in Icelandic business together on the board of Straumur-Burdaras because Bjorgolfur Thor Bjorgolfsson is the chairman of Straumur-Burdaras.

Bjorgolfur and his father Bjorgolfur Gudmundsson are the main shareholders of Landsbankinn while FL-group is one of the main shareholders of Glitnir bank.

[victory at last] 44 year wait for my little team

Cats break 44-year drought

Geelong has smashed a 19-year record to claim the AFL Grand Final's greatest winning margin, steamrolling Port Adelaide at the MCG today.

The Age put it this way:

Geelong has put an end to more than 40 years of heartache and despair with the most comprehensive performance imaginable to destroy Port Adelaide

What makes it sweet for me is the following:
1. Port Adelaide are a power team in Australia. That's why they're called The Power. They won the flag a few years back as well. Geelong is from a small town and though they play a pleasing brand of fast flowing football, they've been considered lightweights at the heavy end of the season when the crunch really comes - boys in the company of men, not unlike me. Hence they've only won in 1952, 1963 and now finally today.

2. My family moved to Australia from Britain and there's a large community of Yorkshire people in Geelong. Therefore this is very much a town and family victory and I was as nervous as a kitten during the three hours the match ran for. This was my Papa's victory and I wish he'd been alive to see it.

3. They deserved it. They've been the leading team all season and it took a team like Port to challenge them. Port have been baiting Geelong all week about how weak they are, how over the hill their ruckman [and what a send off for the old guy] and lots of Port Adelaide tricks.

4. There is great stick between Victoria and South Australia, very bad blood in fact and that's why I've been quiet with Jocko on this point. However, it seems I needn't have been because the only team they hate more than a Victorian team is Port Adelaide. Geelong perhaps is acceptable because it's halfway to Adelaide, geographically.

Jocko explains better here.

5. This was achieved without a "Foreign Legion", the criticism of their last victory. In other words, they were accused last time of "buying the flag". Not this time. Many of these players are not far from the end of their careers as weel, having been up a few years now. It was almost like a last chance.
Now, if only Wimbledon could rise, phoenix like from the Ashes and a new Fash and Vinny could strut their stuff up and down England - ah, that would make an ageing man cry.

[our royal family] this sceptered isle

Discovered this fabulous site on our Royal Family.

Now I know it's the fashion in certain sections of society to belittle our Royals but in the U.S., as you can see from the photo below right, they are welcomed as Royalty, as was Lady Thatcher. Here are some of the gems from this site:

The Love Triangle

Add your own caption.

Their lives and names are forever entwined. Now, Madame Tussauds has given snappers the kind of photo opportunity which is enough to see the residents of Clarence House crying into their glasses of Prince of Wales whisky.

Unveiling the new waxwork model of Camilla, onlookers may have been surprised to see that the Prince of Wales' second wife has been positioned (for today at least) looking almost directly at her her nemesis: Charles's first wife, Diana, Princess of Wales.

Beatrice does Victoria

This photo was shamelessly nicked from - who said royalty cannot be voluptuous?

She made her debut with a beaming smile on her face. But as Princess Beatrice left Lincoln Cathedral following a day of filming for The Young Victoria, it would appear the showbiz gloss may have worn off as, wrapped in a blanket, the Queen's granddaughter appeared to have discovered the reality of life as a lady-in-waiting ... and waiting ... and waiting ...

If you miss this opportunity to view the rich tapestry which is Royalty in 2007, you'll never be forgiven by your grandchildren, should you have any and if we still have an earth. Visit soon and visit often.

Friday, September 28, 2007

[clouds] come into everyone's life

Clouds define us, delight us and depress us. From Aristophanes' The Clouds to Susan Orey's Empty Sky, clouds Я go:

An empty sky is safe because nothingness can only stay.

When joy arrives in clouds I fear they’ll fade, or glide away.

I weep whenever I read that poem. Clouds are good and rain clouds can even help the economy [and isn't it inspired that the Guardian has a business section] but for every fluffy Cumulus, a little Nimbus must come into our lives. Life is more of a streaky Cirrus than a Stratus of success.

Clouds are so central to our life and yet so maligned - think of the negative connotations, as in the expression "head in the clouds" or Waters and Gilmour's "Obscured by Clouds".

Why not "Protected by Clouds" or "Charmed by Clouds"?

Because of this societal prejudice against clouds, a society has been set up to promote them, for a one off fee of three pounds, for postage and handling. The Society's Manifesto:

We pledge to fight ‘blue-sky thinking’ wherever we find it.

Life would be dull if we had to look up at cloudless monotony day after day.

If you'd like to see more cloud photos, Dan can oblige from Canada. Perhaps you'd prefer your clouds in musical form - there's always Ennio Morricone's Guardians of the Clouds.

And now, a little poem to close with:

I staggered lonely as a cloud

That p--sed down rain, day after day;

And made a little mental note

To nevermore be caught that way;

Shaking a drunken fist I cried

"Oh clouds, why dump you on my head;

Why blight my day in every way?

Something I did, something I said?

By way of answer the clouds did part

Revealing the form of a maiden fair,

This side of Tescos with two great bags

Approaching with matted, sodden hair;

"The clouds be praised, my own true love -

Sweet wench, the raingods sent you hence?"

"You wot, you tosser? Ere - grab these bags;

Now shut it 'n lend me fifty pence."

"For you, rain goddess I'd go as far

As fifty five though it cuts me deep."

"You stingy sod," the angel croaked,

A bitter harvest you're gonna reap."

Too late we saw the Nimbus high,

Stealthily gathered throughout our tryst,

And now it bucketed from the sky

I swear to you - it fairly p--sed.

And now these days, we sit and laugh

How that day led to wedded bliss;

And everytime we see those clouds,

My rain queen scores a whisky kiss.

[By James "Cloudy" Higham, greatly indebted to Link Notes. Visit him for other goodies as well. I dedicate this post to the Chipster, Crispen Walter, for whom I'd like the clouds to part, as if by a thong.]

[cat tales] best of icelandic life

Noticed my last Icelandic wisdom post has so far scored a resounding zero comments, which is a pity because I felt the pic was ever so nice. Not even Richard Madeley or Crispen Walter came over to say anything. Ho hum.

So you do realize that means it's necessary to press on with the second inimitable post:

Man Calls Police to Tackle Feline Intruders

A Hafnarfjördur resident recently called police when two cats, whom he was unfamiliar with, snuck into his apartment in the dead of night and disturbed his sleep. The man escaped out to his balcony and called the police from there.

When the police officers arrived the apartment owner wouldn’t leave the balcony to open the front door; so the officers had to climb up to the balcony and approach the intruders from there, reports.

The two cats were hiding in the man’s bedroom and hissed and crawled under the bed at the sight of the police. The officers were not successful in driving the cats out from underneath the bed until they armed themselves with broomsticks.

The intruders disappeared into the darkness and have not been seen since.

An important post, I'm sure you agree and that line again:

…two cats, whom he was unfamiliar with, snuck into his apartment in the dead of night and disturbed his sleep…


[housekeeping] changes

Five hours making big changes to the rolls, deleting many, adding a few and putting Blogpower and the White Roll to the revamped reader. I'm knackered.

[the agenda] the squeeze is on

Look at this crappy logo. It represents everything reprehensible in the spiritually bereft world of the soul-less upper echelons

Archbishop Cranmer asked:

So if its [The Council of Europe's] raison d’être is to sustain plurality and to promote diversity, why is it voting soviet-like to ban the teaching of creationism and ‘intelligent design’ in Europe’s schools?

He then said:

Both the EU and the European Council are seeking to relegate the role of religion to the realms of the private, and assert an increasingly aggressive secular agenda in the public realm.

For a start, the terms "intelligent design" and "creationism" are buzz words which play into the hands of the enemy.

By trying to make it into a science, proponents are turning the whole Judaeo-Christian tradition and the nature of Christianity itself, let alone the concept of our Maker, into something which can be "scientifically analysed" and therefore rejected because it fails to meet non-comprehensive prescriptive criteria. Read Wolfie's and Gracchi's take on science in the first link and that of the Devil's Kitchen here.

The Council [for goodness sake - even look at the name of the 13!] are doing a lot more than making religion a private matter, Archbish. They're following an unerring globalist agenda [the cold blue logos and vague taglines are the best indicator of that] and one of the planks is to wipe Christianity off the face of the map because it's one of the few modes of thought which can see the drive from Europe for what it is.

The means to that is to break the nexus between Christianity [and that is the western religion, for crying out loud] and State - not a bad thing in itself because one's relationship with one's Maker is a private matter but that's not the ulterior motive of the Council, just the same.

When will people see that this so called Council is just one manifestation of the same hydra?

Now the FT says:

Western multinationals and financial centres are often “complicit in driving corruption in poor nations”, Transparency International, the anti-corruption watchdog, charged on Wednesday as it published its annual ranking of how corrupt different countries are perceived to be.

The index – widely used by governments, companies and development organisations as a corruption gauge – shows a perceived worsening of corruption in several major industrial countries compared with 2006.

Huguette Labelle, TI chairwoman, said: “The bribe money that buys a champagne lifestyle for corrupt officials in the poorest countries often originates in multinational companies based in the world’s richest countries – the CPI’s top scorers”, she said.

So what on earth is news here? When will the financial world work out that a lot of what drives it askew is complete corruption and spiritual bankruptcy at the top? Whose tools include "deliberate incompetence". The Fed itself - just examine the events leading to the squeeze and how quickly it responded with "altruistic" loans at friendly rates, the way it bent the rules to assist, the powerful position over domestic banks it now finds itself in.

Nothing like a little squeeze on the greedy, is there? If people didn't want what they didn't have, there wouldn't be credit debt. If there was no credit debt, there'd be no powerful banks. If there were no powerful banks, there's be no uber-powerful Central Banks and these last wouldn't be able to dictate to governments. Therefore the governments might just pursue people friendly policies.

That would never do, would it?

And for goodness sake, they even mooted that the ECB would follow - read for yourself what the ECB did. Now how does an American housing crisis translate into an ECB move? Is there anyone who still seriously doubts the collusion of the financiers and the pollies they control?

Second question, returning to the Archbish - if the financial agenda is indeed global in scope and federalist in nature, then how does that tie in with a social agenda of wiping Christianity off the face of the earth? Or should that read "wiping the voices of conscience [Christian, other religions e.g. the Buddhists plus the secular world] off the face of the earth"?

Get out of your debts and credit obligations now and buy commodities, e.g. silver. Sackerson quotes sources:

"Investors have to look for assets which cannot multiply as fast as the pace at which the Fed prints money."
Deprive this inferno [read "coming holocaust"] of its oxygen, as Maggie mooted in a different context.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

[country quiz] tough one this evening


Your task, for ten points, is to name the country in each case:

1. Lýðveldið Ísland is the native name for the island otherwise known as:

a. Baffin Island

b. Iceland

c. Tasmania

2. The island settled by Ingólfur Arnarson around 874AD was:

a. Iceland

b. Jersey

c. Staten Island

3. The world's fifth economy, in terms of GDP is:

a. Italy

b. Iran

c. Iceland

4. Which of these is not in the EU?

a. France

b. Germany

c. Iceland

5. Which country executed its last Catholic bishop to make way for a Lutheran?

a. Iceland

b. Wales

c. Jamaica

6. In which country were there riots and disorder when it joined NATO on March 30, 1949?

a. The U.S.A.

b. Iceland

c. Trinidad

7. Kópavogur, Hafnarfjörður and Mosfellsbær can be found in the capital of:

a. Iceland

b. Norman England

c. Jamaica

8. The island which is 11% glaciated is:

a. Jersey

b. Iceland

c. Fiji

9. The country with no native reptiles or amphibians on the island but around 1,300 known species of insects is:

a. Scotland

b. Ireland

c. Iceland

10. The country with the Mid-Atlantic Ridge running right through the guts of it is:

a. New Zealand

b. Jamaica

c. Iceland

Nope, I'm not going to tell you the answer.

Alþingi at Þingvellir - I've stood here. Just thought you'd like to know.

[front page] best of iceland news

This is more a private indulgence but I'm starting a series, today, of The Best of Iceland, returning to the start of my archives and running one post a day from old Iceland Review stories. [Don't worry - you won't be denied the new ones.]

It would be simply criminal to deny newer readers the chance to see some of these.

To fully savour the flavour, it should be remembered that each of these were not just stories but front page news and often the lead story. In posts with many Icelandic names, I strongly suggest you try reading them aloud for full effect and don't leave anything out.

Today's was a vital piece of news at the time, after some apparently unsavoury incidents on the green isle:

In an article in Morgunbladid* today critic Asgeir Ingvarsson complains that Icelanders in general do not know when to applaud at cultural events.

More generally, he states that people should voice their approval or disapproval more freely, but at the right moment. The biggest complaint is that people clap their hands in the middle of classical works. To those he gives very good advice:

a) Buy the program so you know when the piece is over;

b) Never be the first one to applaud.

Secondly, if you do applaud, don't do so for an extended period of time. Never whistle or stamp your feet. That is very primitive. If someone performs well, don't hesitate to call: Bravo!, Brava! or Bravi! but this should only be done if the artist touches a special string in your heart.

Only if someone has managed an extraordinary feat should the audience give a standing ovation, preferably only at premiers.

If you want to give flowers to the artist, it is in very bad taste to bring them into the theatre and deliver them yourself. You should leave them at the ticket counter and let theatre employees deliver them at the end of the show.

If the show is terrible you should not applaud, in case you walk out before the end of the show. And if someone has done badly, according to the article, it is spiritually purifying to boo the artist.

*Morgunbladid, as you would know, translates into the accurately named Morning Newpaper and Frettirbladid - Evening Newspaper, in case there was any confusion. Good, that's that sorted.

So there it is - the justification you've been searching for. For serious theatre-buffs, you might like to check out this page.