Odeo Respond, Download Link Returns!

As posted yesterday it appeared Odeo had decreased it's functionality of the "send me an Odeo message" by not allowing users to download the mp3 of the left message. Well there has been a great response from Odeo with emails and even a blog comment. All is restored in the Odeo universe.

Odeo Download LinkBiz Stone who works for Odeo left a comment on the Rail yesterday that indicated that the omission of the Download link on the web page was a bug and implied that they were unaware of the problem until I had blogged about it. So great I found a bug! The emails that were recieved were also prompt and promised a resolution. The action by Odeo to resolve the issue has been excellent. When I logged onto my inbox this afternoon, the download link is now present and accounted for. Everyone breath a sigh of relief. I am yet to see if the enclosure in the RSS feed from the "inbox" has been fixed as well but I am assuming that it has.

I commend Odeo staff on their excellent response time and the fact that they responded at all. They could have easily just resolved the problem and pretended that it did not happen. Great work Odeo, we still love you 😉 (In a nice blokey type of way…).

In fact I am not really sure how Biz found my humble blog, and if he is reading this then I wouldn't mind knowing. The other thing that I was curious about was if the staffers at Odeo patrol the BlogOsphere looking for tags and posts regarding Odeo, to see what people are saying and suggesting. I know that one suggestion that I made in the past was implemented, so that was cool.

Thanks Odeo keep up the good work.

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Nice Blog

Thomas Marban; who I can only assume is the author of POPURLS left a comment on my last entry. I went and checked out his blog, amazing.

Thanks Thomas for the comment, nice to know my ranting is being read by someone. I took a look at Thomas' site and it is very nice. Think minimal, 2.0 niceness. It is simple and yet functional. On first glace I thought "what the?", I actually thought that I had a bit of comment advertising. But I stayed and clicked a few of the headings, while obscure I found the blog easily enough and found it easy to read. The thing I like about the whole site is that it is unique and not your average blog. I would not expect it to be given he wrote POPURLS! He is also obviously heavily involved in web design. Perhaps the reason I thought it was a bit of corporate work is the fact that the world is not used to seeing a blog that is as polished as this one and perhaps I will not make assumptions in the future.

I urge you to go and have a look at what the future of Blogs might be like and have a poke around, I liked it but it might not be everyone's "cup of tea". Nice work Thomas. That's if you want the opinion of a small time blogger! I could only dream of a site that went anywhere near the quality!

WordPress Response

I am not going to move the blog. Great response and in a timely fashion impress me, to the point of me totally deciding to stay with WordPress.

I got a response from a previous email that said that we are working on the problem and that it should be fixed now. Well that was before the problems last night. So I wrote a fairly pointed email back saying that in no way was it fixed. In addition there have been a few mentions in the blogosphere about the issues.

Seems that WordPress has grown at a rate that they were not expecting and that they have had some difficultity keeping up. This has resulted in servers slowing down and being unreliable. I got a response from my email in under an hour, you can not get better than that! The first thing I got was an apology. The second thing was that I was informed that they have purchased more bandwidth which should speed up things around WordPress. I have been informed also that as fast as they install new hardware (by that I presume hard-drives) it fills up. I think this is just a reflection of the growth of the blogosphere, it is growing at a phenomenal rate and doesn’t look like slowing down. However this week it looks like they are having a mass install of new hardware in their data centres and that will make a world of difference, I hope it does.

This is evident in the WordPress Blog so that’s good to hear:

We’re in the very final stages of bringing the new systems online, just waiting the last few bits of configuration to come online. As we’re more than doubling the servers we’re using, it should address all performance issues and help us prevent any for a long time to come.

Finally, I was told that they are working very hard at making WordPress a great domain that just works. The response also said that they have not been achieving that recently and that they have dissapointed their users. But they have the solution and they are working on it. So hang in there bloggers there is light at the end of the tunnel.

Interestingly Sebastian and I mentioned in the podcast last week that the ping times for WordPress to Technorati are terrible and that bloggers need to manually ping Technorati to see some benefits from it. This is a problem with Ping-O-Matic and Technorati recognised by WordPress as Matt has been talking to Technorati about resolving the issue. My advice keep doing it manually as this has not been resolved yet, I will try to keep you posted.

Great response from WordPress and I hope that I can continue to support WordPress as I like their style and they are excellent in the support stakes.

NewsGator Response

I am compelled to write this post due to the buzz created by the NewsGator outage and their response to the FeedDemon community.

It certainly generated some buzz. “NewsGator” was the number one search on Technorati yesterday and people have blogged about it big time. The interest that was shown aside. The response from NewsGator in my opinion has been one of the best responses from a large company that I have ever seen. I even received a comment on my previous post from Jack Brewster who is in Tech Support at NewsGator! I have never seen any company communicate to the users of their product in such an open and frank way. Under the same circumstances other large companies would not have even made an apology, let alone tried to explain exactly what happened.
Greg Reinackers Weblog goes into further explanation in regards to the reasons for the outage, detailing the exact events of the outage hour by hour. He ends his post with these words:

But for now – yep, we screwed up. To our customers who were affected – you have my personal apology, and my assurance that we’re doing everything we can to ensure this doesn’t happen again.

In fact I started to feel sorry for the bastards! They are obviously working very hard at delivering a stable client that does have some great features. It would appear that they were trying to improve that when the crash occurred! I really hope that the willingness to provide information and communicate that to users will continue it certainly gives a fresh face to the usual no comment I see from big companies. Well done NewsGator.

I would still recommend FeedDemon to anyone, it is a great RSS reader. I would recommend it even more strongly given their handling and response to the outage. I hope that other companies take a leaf out of their book and start remembering that real people are using their products. Thanks guys keep up the good work.

Strange Frog Happenings

Frog InvaderOur house has been invaded by frogs! The last two nights we have been inundated by baby green tree frogs, they are everywhere. Every hour or so I have to walk around the house, collect the frog and put them outside again. They mainly end up in the kitchen, as this is where the light is on.

This year we have had a fair amount of rain and I think the frogs are loving it and each other. They have bred like rabbits and now the babies have hatched the place is lousy with them. The reason that they are getting in the house is that we have an open house with no fly-screens so they just hop in through the windows and doors. I pick up about four to five each time. I don’t want them locked inside as they will certainly “croak” (eww bad pun). We are happy that they are back as the last couple of years they have not been around in great numbers in the last two years that have been quite dry in comparison.

It had to happen, but I was going to insert a picture into this post but right as I was going to take the picture the camera battery went flat. I will have to put it in later.

Well later has happened and I have charged the camera and I have taken a picture of one of the many frogs. To give you an idea of scale the frog is sitting on my middle finger. We think that they are white – lipped green tree frogs. I am stoked with the photo – click on it to look at the full sized image.

I Purchased Two Domain Names

Well this something that I have been meaning to blog about for the past week! As you know my family lost our dog Amos last Friday and in the middle of that I had purchased two domain names. So you might understand why I have not blogged about it until now. That does not however change the fact that I am very excited about it.

Basically, I purchased two domain names through GoDaddy. I will say a few things about GoDaddy though and one is that the biggest problem with the site was that is was very confusing. That comes from the simple fact that they offer so many services and products. Somehow in my brain all these products etc, got mashed up and it took me some time to decipher all the information. But with a little effort I worked it out. Basically you have to register as a user, or I think they called it creating an account, that was fairly easy. Then I was off to search for a domain name.

Just as a side note there is a very interesting article on Dennis Forbes’ Blog about domain names, their popularity and their availability based of what has already been registered and therefore available. Really worth the read, if for nothing else but curiosity.

So I search for the name and found it it was available and added it to my “cart”. It is then that I was bombarded with more options than you care to poke a stick at! This was difficult for someone that has never done it. Anyways I ended up purchasing an extra option of making the registration private. And I was twenty odd dollars worse off. That’s for a year.

At this stage I am not telling you what the domains are, only that you should keep reading and all will become apparent. I will also say that it has something to do with a very imminent podcast; that is if my co-host decides not to take on anymore projects! The time is coming when I should talk about him also…