Archive for February, 2009

Maintenance: Tonight @ 12:00am (Friday, Feb 27, 8:00am GMT)

So this time I’m saying “tonight” at 12:00am, even though it’s technically Friday. Completely inconsistent, maybe, but it just sounds better.

This maintenance window will last about 2 hours and, unfortunately, there’s not a whole lot of sexy stuff to show for it. This update is predominantly back-end work, along with bug fixes and configuration changes, that will allow us to start collecting additional information in preparation for new features down the line. The good news is that the site should be a bit faster once it’s complete.

Thanks for your patience. We try to get this stuff done as fast as possible at the slowest part of the day, but unfortunately for those in the GMT +n zones of the world, that’s prime Blipping time. We’ll keep it as brief as possible!

Thanks,

-ian

 

Update: Things are going a little overtime. We’re just optimizing some database tables, then checking to make sure everything works, and we should be back in 20min.

Alt-Refresh

Wait, updated design? It looks awesome/ugly/dark/lonely/new/yay. Somewhere in there is probably what’s going through your head right how. I’m hoping you think it’s better (I do, but what do I know). Honestly, what really did it for me was looking at the old design side-by-side with the updated look. Unfortunately you don’t get that luxury, so you’ll have to take my word for it. Trust me, it’s better. Just give it a minute to settle in.

So you wanna know what the deal is, right?

Well, we have some big plans for some new features in the nearer term. I can’t really say much about what those new features are, but we needed more room and a darker color scheme to enhance the… aesthetic. This update is more of a stepping stone than anything, a means to an end if you swing like that. We plan to push another change soon that will really pull everything together. But in order to get there we needed to move some things around and make some more room in general. We’ve learned quite a bit from the first design, what worked and what didn’t, and we plan to learn a lot more by experimenting with a few changes here and there.

Everyone is welcome to rip the whole process to shreds in the comments below or by emailing support@blip.fm if you have some flattering or uncouth words to spit at the design team.

In any case, this update went extremely well and I have to give mad props to @yan for working his tail off making sure things were ready to go.

Happy Blipping!

-ian

Maintenance: Tomorrow @ 1:00am (Thursday, Feb 19, 9:00am GMT)

To be clear, the maintenance is actually tonight for anyone in the US, since it’s in the night that follows today, and before tomorrow morning and WAY before tomorrow night; but if we’re speaking technically, it is actually tomorrow because today ends at midnight. So the next time the moon is high over California, that’s when we’ll be changing things up. Glad we got that cleared up.

Tonight’s code change has quite a bit packed into it and we expect the maintenance window will last about 2 hours. The update includes performance enhancements, some bug fixes (including the fix for stats showing up wrong), and an updated site design. I’ll write some more about the design changes in another blog entry after we’ve pushed it live and everyone has had a chance to take a look.

Some of the bigger changes are:

  • Blipping will be faster
  • Adding a message to blips is now optional
  • Stats will be properly incremented
  • Playlists will load faster
  • Improved site design

There’s also a bunch of stuff under the hood, so it’s something to look forward to. We’ll keep the window as small as possible, opening the site back up as soon as we know everything is working properly.

-ian

Maintenance: Tonight 11:00pm (Wednesday, Feb 18, 7:00am GMT)

I’ll start this post off with an apology for the unplanned downtime over the weekend. After testing on our staging server, we upgraded some software in production that will allow us to take advantage of some new features and improve scaling moving forward. Everything did not go smoothly. It took longer than anyone wanted to diagnose and fix the problem, but it seems that in the course of action we were able to speed up performance quite a bit. I’ll do everything I can to prevent that kind of downtime in the future, and alert you of planned outages in this blog.

So here’s where I alert you of a planned outage starting tonight at 11:00pm (Wednesday, Feb 18, 7:00am GMT). The maintenance window will last 1-2 hours about 20-30 minutes. This update will include performance updates, bug fixes (including the fix for stats showing up wrong), and an updated site design. I’ll write some more about the design changes in another blog entry after we’ve pushed it live. We’re going to upgrade some hardware tonight and do some testing before pushing the updated code later this week.

Thanks for hanging with us at Blip.fm, the community is growing strong and we’re committed to making sure these updates happen as quickly as possible. There’s lots of good stuff coming in the near future, keep watching this blog.

-ian

UPDATE: We’re going to hold off on the code push and upgrade hardware tonight. This should only take about 20min.

Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger

In other news, the new year has seen a steady stream of new DJs and traffic on the site has been climbing faster than anticipated. We’ve been staying one step ahead in terms of keeping things running, but it’s beginning to tax our current hardware.

 

The next few weeks has the development team (@yan and myself) laser-focused on preparing the site for a major announcement which we expect to bring quite a few new blippers (as well as bring a little iJoy to you mobile DJs who need a little Blip.fm iFix on the iGo).

 

So as we upgrade the infrastructure and code base there might be a few scheduled outages. We’ll stay up long hours late at night to make sure anything drastic happens while the sane people are fast asleep dreaming about their perfect Blip (you know, that one perfect blip that brings in the max three props from every listener—but I digress).

 

The projected outcome from all of this is that the site will be able to withstand huge spikes in traffic with nary a regard. What you’ll be able to notice after we’re all done is that the site will load faster and feel snappier, something that’ll be welcome to everyone.

 

Keep an eye out here for more updates on progress.