Some exciting changes are coming to eteamz this month, and they've been a long time coming, I know. We've put months of work into these changes, but that will be a story for another time.
The first change will be mostly unnoticed, as it's entirely behind-the-scenes. This will be a much-needed upgrade to our database (both the hardware and the software). The goal here is, of course, improved performance. More power driving the site means we should be able to handle more traffic and handle it better.
As a result of messing with the database, though, we will have to take the site offline for a short time. We're planning on a four-hour window from 12am to 4am EDT, June 13, 2007. Studies show that most people aren't using eteamz at that time of night, so you probably won't even notice. So we apologize that we have to shut off eteamz for a little while, but it is our expectation that you will notice an improvement in performance.
Coming later this month, we have a couple more changes, which will be much more noticeable. There will be changes to the way you log in - we think much more straightforward than today, and your login will work for other Active Network sites. Then the new Active.com will be launched with a whole new set of community features like message boards and announcements, site and event search, video and all kinds of great content. More details will be coming soon about this as it gets closer, so stay tuned.
The re-launch of Active and eteamz in the upcoming months marks the advent of the video-age for the two brands. Active, along with our video partner JumpCut, are integrating top-notch video services into Active and the Active suite of products (including eteamz).
An interesting issue worth pondering though is the legal ramifications of video support and how the system will function.
Case-in-point: YouTube. Google has been embroiled in legal conflicts with major media networks recently regarding the use of copyrighted materials on Google���s recent acquisition, YouTube. Originally heralded as the next cash cow application on the internet, YouTube has experienced a mass exodus of sponsors / partners due to the legally volatile nature of the YouTube business model.
My question is how will you, the eteamz and Active community, use these video tools? I envision a vibrant network of folks sharing original video of sport-related accomplishment rather than recycled content from TV shows and movies. Videography and photography of sport can be a truly powerful and awe-inspiring thing, imagine how powerful this consolidation of sport-related video from around the world is going to be?
As many of you know, the two most popular Web browsers available today (Microsoft's Internet Explorer and The Mozilla Foundation's Firefox) have recently released new versions. I won't bother to get into a discussion (or more likely a rant) about the browser war. As far as eteamz goes, it's not much of a war with nearly 92% of all page views going to IE.
For now, most people are still using the "old" version of IE so, for the time being, we'll continue to focus the majority of our support on that browser. However, we encourage our users to upgrade to the newest versions of both browsers. You pioneers will be able to help us identify and fix any anomolies that may appear.
eteamz will continue to support the most commonly used browsers and we'll try to make sure that, during this transition time, we quickly address any issues that arise. We, and all future IE 7 and Firefox 2 users, thank you!
eteamz will be undergoing some minor maintenance early Friday morning, October 20, 2006, from 1:00am to 2:00am EDT. During this time, eteamz will be unavailable. When it returns, you should notice an improvement in performance, specifically on the message boards.
We apologize for any inconvenience and we thank you for your understanding.
You may not realize it, but whenever you search for something on Google, pay your bills online or update the news on your eteamz site, all you're doing is connecting to another computer. Yep, a computer just like yours, although usually a bit more powerful. They might be running Windows (like us), or Linux, or someotheroperatingsystem, but they're still just computers.
A computer that just sits there giving out webpages (like eteamz, Google, Yahoo, etc.) is usually called a server (it "serves" web pages, get it?). Most servers on the internet sit in buildings called data centers. A data center has big juicy connections to the internet that can hold a lot of data, as well as backup power supplies in case something goes wrong. Some even have their own power generators nearby so they can run for weeks if their local power plant were to go dark! This is why companies put their computers in data centers -- they provide a lot of redundancy and protection in case something goes wrong, and it's typically too expensive to get that kind of protection in your own building.
Those boxes you see on the right are known as racks or cages and they typically hold a few dozen servers each. Last night eteamz moved a few feet from one cage to another. Which doesn't seem all that impressive until you learn that the bandwidth (the amount of data that can be moved around) in the new cage is 10 times greater than the bandwidth in the old cage! For the techies out there: the new cage has a 1000 megabit backbone (1Gb), the old had 100 megabits. This is a huge step for us since it will allow us to expand exponentially going forward.
I'd like to thank our IT department who worked until almost midnight last night to make sure the job got done right and that it wouldn't impact our users. This is a big step for eteamz and will give us plenty of elbow room for the forseeable future to expand our services and make sure the site stays quick and responsive.
The eteamz Albumz features powered by Shutterfly I told you about last month are now live. Parents, players, grandparents, etc. can share their images with you. You and your visitors can order prints, share new albums via email, etc. I'm really excited because I've been using Shutterfly for years. It's very simple to use and they have great prices. You can check out the details at: http://www.eteamzalbumz.com
Here are some of the most commonly asked questions from this week.
Where are the images stored?
When you or your site visitors add images using the Shutterfly feature, those images are stored on Shutterfly's web site. They do not effect your site's storage space.
How can I remove an album that a site visitor added?
Login to your Admin</span> Albums folder. Click "Add/Edit Albums" in the upper right side of the page. Click the delete icon next to the appropriate Album. Note: It will not delete the images from Shutterfly.