Author Topic: So the forums have been down for a bit.  (Read 14966 times)

Heradel

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on: April 06, 2011, 09:24:42 PM
Hey folks,

We're very sorry for the downtime of the last day or two, and I'm very sorry to also say that it may continue for another few days. We've been having some issues with the current servers, and are in the process of changing them for both the forums and the blogs. Please let us know here if you are having issues with the blogs or RSS feeds. If you're having problems with the forums... You probably won't be able to post here. You can always email me at bill at escapeartists dot net.

--Bill
« Last Edit: April 06, 2011, 09:28:54 PM by Heradel »

I Twitter. I also occasionally blog on the Escape Pod blog, which if you're here you shouldn't have much trouble finding.


Raj

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Reply #1 on: April 07, 2011, 09:44:31 AM
Not sure if it's a problem or a deliberate change, but I noticed that from a few weeks ago the RSS feed for the blog stopped containing the full text of the post, but only a summary, so I had to click through to the article to actually read it.

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Heradel

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Reply #2 on: April 07, 2011, 10:37:28 AM
Not sure if it's a problem or a deliberate change, but I noticed that from a few weeks ago the RSS feed for the blog stopped containing the full text of the post, but only a summary, so I had to click through to the article to actually read it.

That was actually deliberate. Having the full, long, stories in the feed actually ended up increasing the size of the RSS feed fairly substantially, to the point that it was starting to show up in a significant way in our bandwidth bill. All things considered we'd prefer to have the full stories in the RSS, but for right now the bandwidth penalty is too high.

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Raj

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Reply #3 on: April 07, 2011, 07:50:00 PM
No problem with the stories not being in the feed, but it'd be nice if the blog posts were, although I suspect there's no easy way to separate that out so that you can have full posts in one category and not in another.

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Wilson Fowlie

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Reply #4 on: April 07, 2011, 09:38:56 PM
No problem with the stories not being in the feed, but it'd be nice if the blog posts were ...

I agree.

Also, I'm somewhat interested in the technical details of how that's set. Is there a character limit you can set? A percentage? Can it be overridden on individual posts?

If it's a character limit, I respectfully request a slightly higher one - if possible - so that smaller posts (like the one about the forum being down) can make it to the RSS feed in their entirety.

(Actually, if it's possible to override the cut off, that post would have been a good one to do it with anyway, given the nature of the announcement...)

"People commonly use the word 'procrastination' to describe what they do on the Internet. It seems to me too mild to describe what's happening as merely not-doing-work. We don't call it procrastination when someone gets drunk instead of working." - Paul Graham


Heradel

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Reply #5 on: April 07, 2011, 11:11:31 PM
No problem with the stories not being in the feed, but it'd be nice if the blog posts were ...

I agree.

Also, I'm somewhat interested in the technical details of how that's set. Is there a character limit you can set? A percentage? Can it be overridden on individual posts?

If it's a character limit, I respectfully request a slightly higher one - if possible - so that smaller posts (like the one about the forum being down) can make it to the RSS feed in their entirety.

(Actually, if it's possible to override the cut off, that post would have been a good one to do it with anyway, given the nature of the announcement...)


I believe it's a character limit, but Mur set it up. Ideally we'd serve the whole posts via the RSS, and I think we'll probably look at how we can do it and not break the budget once we've gotten through the server move for all four websites (the three blogs and the forums).

Things appear to be stable for now, and hopefully they'll stay that way.

I Twitter. I also occasionally blog on the Escape Pod blog, which if you're here you shouldn't have much trouble finding.


Heradel

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Reply #6 on: April 08, 2011, 12:34:26 AM
While we're here, is there anything else on the technical end of things that we should be doing?

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kibitzer

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Reply #7 on: April 08, 2011, 02:40:16 AM
Well I hesitate to mention it coz it seems unfixable but that damn double-post stuff is really annoying. Still happens to me very frequently. I guess an upgrade to SMF 2.0 (when released) is being considered? Maybe try an upgrade with 2.0 RC5? (on a copy of the forums I mean). I could help with that if you like (e.g. run a test upgrade on some spare hosting space I have).


Heradel

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Reply #8 on: April 08, 2011, 03:26:21 AM
Well I hesitate to mention it coz it seems unfixable but that damn double-post stuff is really annoying. Still happens to me very frequently. I guess an upgrade to SMF 2.0 (when released) is being considered? Maybe try an upgrade with 2.0 RC5? (on a copy of the forums I mean). I could help with that if you like (e.g. run a test upgrade on some spare hosting space I have).

The plan is to move to 2.0 once it's out of RC and once we've changed servers. The annoying thing is it appears that 2.0 is stuck in RC5 because they're have legal licensing issues.

We're hopeful that that the upgrade fixes it, but if not we'll dig further into how the database and forums are playing with each other.

I Twitter. I also occasionally blog on the Escape Pod blog, which if you're here you shouldn't have much trouble finding.


Scattercat

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Reply #9 on: April 08, 2011, 06:37:09 AM
I would like a pony and a red wagon.



kibitzer

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Reply #10 on: April 08, 2011, 12:02:03 PM
I would like a pony and a red wagon.

I would like a story about a red wagon riding a pony. Mirrorshards.


Scattercat

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Reply #11 on: April 08, 2011, 12:38:40 PM
I would like a pony and a red wagon.

I would like a story about a red wagon riding a pony. Mirrorshards.

Happy to oblige.

I see someone has worked out where the levers are...



Wilson Fowlie

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Reply #12 on: April 08, 2011, 11:26:06 PM
I'm somewhat interested in the technical details of how that's set. Is there a character limit you can set? A percentage? Can it be overridden on individual posts?

I believe it's a character limit, but Mur set it up. Ideally we'd serve the whole posts via the RSS,

Personally, I'd prefer the story posts not go out on the RSS, especially if it costs a lot. I think it works for the shorter posts (announcements, reviews, general interest pieces), but the stories are much longer and it doesn't seem the place for that to me. Might just be a personal preference, though.

"People commonly use the word 'procrastination' to describe what they do on the Internet. It seems to me too mild to describe what's happening as merely not-doing-work. We don't call it procrastination when someone gets drunk instead of working." - Paul Graham


kibitzer

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Reply #13 on: April 09, 2011, 12:22:45 AM
I see someone has worked out where the levers are...

Hehe, thanks. I even get a label!


kibitzer

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Reply #14 on: April 09, 2011, 12:24:35 AM
Personally, I'd prefer the story posts not go out on the RSS, especially if it costs a lot. I think it works for the shorter posts (announcements, reviews, general interest pieces), but the stories are much longer and it doesn't seem the place for that to me. Might just be a personal preference, though.

That sounds fair enough to me. In general I prefer to see a synopsis of longer posts in an RSS feed.


Listener

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Reply #15 on: April 13, 2011, 11:05:58 AM
Personally, I'd prefer the story posts not go out on the RSS, especially if it costs a lot. I think it works for the shorter posts (announcements, reviews, general interest pieces), but the stories are much longer and it doesn't seem the place for that to me. Might just be a personal preference, though.

That sounds fair enough to me. In general I prefer to see a synopsis of longer posts in an RSS feed.

I really don't like having to click through to other pages to read stuff. I prefer to get the entire article in my reader. It guarantees that I don't have to shift mental gears -- items from Escape Pod look the same as items from Gizmodo look the same as items from Bob's Super Blog of Right-Wing Fun...damentalism*. However, I don't read the text versions of the stories when they're offered. To me, EP et al are audio magazines, and while the stories may have been published as text in the past, I feel I'm intended to consume them on EP via audio, so that's what I do.

Conversely, when EP reprints a story I've read elsewhere, I tend to skip the audio version, but that's just me. I do listen to the intro/outro, but, I mean, if I've read a 10k-word story already, I'd rather spend the hour or so commuting listening to something I haven't heard.

* Clearly I made that last one up. I hope.

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Wilson Fowlie

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Reply #16 on: April 15, 2011, 10:50:50 PM
I think Listener and I are on the same page (as it were) here.

I would rather not have to click through to read articles (e.g the reviews by Josh Roseman). However, I also don't want to have to scroll through many pages of a story (if only to mark it as read) when I know I'm going to be listening to it.

I think that a longish (5K-10K character, not word) limit on the RSS articles would allow all but the very longest articles to come through, but not the entire text of (most) stories.  That would be my ideal.

The other thing that would work for me is something that Scienceblogs seems to be able to do but that I haven't seen anyone else do, which is to have a 'Read the rest of this post' link placed at an arbitrary point in the article - it creates a 'fold' (or for some, 'jump') point in both the online blog and the RSS feed. I wouldn't want it used for the reviews and general articles, but it would work (for me, at least) with stories.

"People commonly use the word 'procrastination' to describe what they do on the Internet. It seems to me too mild to describe what's happening as merely not-doing-work. We don't call it procrastination when someone gets drunk instead of working." - Paul Graham


SFEley

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Reply #17 on: April 25, 2011, 07:46:18 AM
Hey folks -- quick update on this.  We've (finally!) gotten the forum site moved to a smarter, spiffier server at Amazon with loads more memory, and on the way we think we've fixed some of the nagging configuration problems that were always lurking in dark corners.  Time will tell, but I'm reasonably confident that the new system will be a lot more stable and probably faster.

If I'm right, then the three podcast sites will follow in short order.  The forum site was the guinea pig because it's always been the most problem-prone.

If you spot any issues, please let us know in this thread (which I am watching! Really!) or email support@escapeartists.net which will go both to me and Heradel.

Thanks once again for your patience.  I wish I could bake cookies for all of you.  I'll try to at least inject your HTTP cookies with chocolate chips and that fresh-baked scent.

ESCAPE POD - The Science Fiction Podcast Magazine


Bdoomed

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Reply #18 on: April 25, 2011, 05:56:04 PM
I'll try to at least inject your HTTP cookies with chocolate chips and that fresh-baked scent.
THAT explains the sweet chocolatey smell emanating from my computer!  I was worried there for a bit.

Thanks Steve!

I'd like to hear my options, so I could weigh them, what do you say?
Five pounds?  Six pounds? Seven pounds?


Wilson Fowlie

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Reply #19 on: April 26, 2011, 04:17:39 PM
... and on the way we think we've fixed some of the nagging configuration problems that were always lurking in dark corners.  Time will tell, but I'm reasonably confident that the new system will be a lot more stable and probably faster.

Oooo! And now with Spell Check, too!

I did notice that I started receiving email notifications for new topic posts yesterday! Hooray!  Thanks!

"People commonly use the word 'procrastination' to describe what they do on the Internet. It seems to me too mild to describe what's happening as merely not-doing-work. We don't call it procrastination when someone gets drunk instead of working." - Paul Graham


Bdoomed

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Reply #20 on: June 14, 2011, 09:09:59 PM
hahahha.  I want to leave that one up for a bit.  I'm getting rid of the links tho.

I'm such a child sometimes. :)

edit: aw damn looks like he hit a bunch of other threads too, meh I'll delete them all... lame.
« Last Edit: June 14, 2011, 09:12:44 PM by Bdoomed »

I'd like to hear my options, so I could weigh them, what do you say?
Five pounds?  Six pounds? Seven pounds?