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Marc Williams

Moving Day Coming Soon!

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I have worked through the last details of moving the users and posts from one site to the other.

Both sites will be shut down during the move. I don't expect it to take more than a day but just in case it may take a bit longer.

Again... your accounts and posts will be moving to the new site.

I'm thinking the day might be Wednesday.

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I may be alone in this, but I like this old fashioned look and feel - the new forum seems pretty busy to me, with a lot more screen refreshes, etc.

Plus, I just tried <a href="http://www.peacethroughunderstanding.org" target="_blank">www.peacethroughunderstanding.org</a> and got this:

Forbidden

You don't have permission to access / on this server.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Apache/1.3.27 Server at <a href="http://www.peacethroughunderstanding.org" target="_blank">www.peacethroughunderstanding.org</a> Port 80

--

So, I guess I'm asking - is there a real reason to be making this switch?

Bill

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I may be alone in this, but I like this old fashioned look and feel - the new forum seems pretty busy to me, with a lot more screen refreshes, etc.

The new site isn’t simply a message board. It is the foundation of a new community site. The look and feel is off-the-shelf and will change over time.

Plus, I just tried <a href="http://www.peacethroughunderstanding.org" target="_blank">www.peacethroughunderstanding.org</a>  and got this: Forbidden You don't have permission to access / on this server.

The test site is closed to the public as I do some tests.

So, I guess I'm asking - is there a real reason to be making this switch?

There are many reasons to switch.

Technical Issues

    [*]The existing message board doesn’t use space efficiently and takes up nearly 100 megabytes of storage space.

    [*]With each new post and new user its size increases. Space costs money.

    [*]The message board uses text files to store every post and user file.

    [*]Text files are not the best way to store data.

    [*]Search and load times would be greatly decreased by updating to a new message board.

    [*]Members request new features. New features can’t be added to the message board.

    [*]Infopop has discontinued support for the version of the product we have.

      Other Issues

        [*]Bill has kindly hosted PTU for the past four years and while I don’t think he would mind hosting it for another four he could use 100 megabytes to publish more great nywf64.com features.

        [*]We’ve been paying for the peacethroughunderstanding domain for nearly four years and it’s time to use it.

          I forgot to add that as the existing message board grows its ability to cope decreases. It will become slower and slower.

          Because Infopop has discontinued support we don't have access to security updates.

          I've been lucky to find tools to do the importing of UBB data. The older the UBB gets the chances of finding these tools decreases. If it's not done now and we wait another four years the tools may not be there.

          I'm not trying to use scare tactics when I say that. In my work I've been painted into many corners because of poor technical decisions made in the past. To save time or money or because nobody wanted to do it. I don't want to be in that situation with the UBB.

          [This message has been edited by Marc Williams (edited 02-09-2004).]

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Marc, posting this here as I don't have your e-mail handy. Tried again and got the following:

redirected to <a href="http://www.peacethroughunderstanding.org/installation/index.php" target="_blank">http://www.peacethroughunderstanding.org/i...ation/index.php</a>

Welcome to Mambo Open Source installation

Pre-installation check for 4.5 Stable-1.0.2 [Elvis] 20/01/2004 23:29 GMT

If any of the items below are highlighted in red then please take actions to correct them. Failure to do so could lead to your Mambo Open Source installation not functioning correctly.

PHP version >= 4.1.0 Yes

- zlib compression support Available

- XML support Available

- MySQL support Available

configuration.php Unwriteable

You can still continue the install as the configuration will be displayed at the end, just copy & paste this and upload.

Session save path /tmp, Writeable

Directory and File Permissions:

In order for Mambo Open Source to function correctly it needs to be able to access or write to certain files or directories. If you see "Unwriteable" you need to change the permissions on the file or directory to allow Mambo Open Source to write to it.

administrator/backups/ Unwriteable

administrator/components/ Unwriteable

components/ Unwriteable

images/ Unwriteable

media/ Unwriteable

language/ Unwriteable

modules/ Unwriteable

templates/ Unwriteable

uploadfiles/ Unwriteable

Recommended PHP settings (found in php.ini):

Safe Mode: OFF

Display Errors: ON

File Uploads: ON

Magic Quotes: ON

Register Globals: OFF

Output Buffering: OFF

Session auto start: 0

[This message has been edited by billcotter (edited 02-09-2004).]

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Looks like we were both posting at the same time.

Well, I guess you can't turn back progress or fight city hall. Maybe I'm alone in my thoughts on this so I'll just step out.

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Actually all existing accounts will be moving to the new site. Exactly as they are here.

But even if that wasn't the case you have two names at the new site. Your login name which is all one word with no spaces and the name that the public sees which can be whatever you like: two words with a space, several words run together, your favorite pavilion or anything you like.

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I don't want anyone to feel their opinions or concerns aren't being addressed.

Ever since this message board went up we've talked about the next version of PTU and what it might be. I've looked for products that would meet both the needs of the community and the management. I have looked at Infopop's latest offerings and my biggest problem with them is the cost and the closed nature of the product.

You're concern is that the next site won't have the same ease of use. It won't be the same. Things are going to change but I'm trying to make those changes as easy as possible.

What you've seen so far is a test site. The future is much better. The two biggest concerns members have expressed are loss of existing usernames and loss of PTU's posts. Both of those problems have been solved.

Tonight I ran the messageboard import process a second time to make sure everything is working. Tomorrow if I have everything working I may open the site to the public for testing.

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Marc,

I certainly respect your technical reasons for upgrading PTU.

I AM, however, curious as to what you keep referring to when you say "Members request new features. New features can’t be added to the message board."

What kinds of new features?

Here's MY request...

when Mike Krause and some other "Special Exhibitors" make a posting under their Exhibitor category to announce having posted something new, we are not permitted to post a reply there. This forces another thread (sometimes several) to be opened and ceates a disjointed flow to discuss the new photos or whatever.

I hate it after I've penned a reply only to have my posting refused by the server. And best of all, it blows away what I've written so if I want to respnd in another thread, I have to rewrite the whole thing.

[This message has been edited by DougSeed (edited 02-10-2004).]

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Doug,

I've kept a list of things people have requested over the years such as the ability to create an image gallery, extending the UBB to include instant messaging, allowing members to have more control over the look and feel of the message board, message counts and at one time you had requested world's fair related news which didn't work very well and was eventually removed.

We have the affiliate topics set up that way so they don't get filled up with member posts and the latest affiliate news is always available. Newer message boards allow for "sticky" posts that will always be at the top of a topic. This would solve the problem.

This project is all about expanding the kinds of information members can share.

Images for example are a problem. If a member wants to share an image they have to find a place to store it. Once the image is hosted somewhere it has to be linked to a PTU post. If the remote image is moved it breaks the post. Information is lost.

Why not make it possible for members to easily share, rate and discuss images in a PTU gallery? The storage is taken care of and it will never be lost.

Files are the same. I have a pile of Adobe Acrobat files I'd love to share but have no easy way to share them. Making it easy to share, rate and discuss the files would be useful.

Members might not see a need for this but imagine you have a great sound file or transcript of an event in a text file. A file directory would make it easy to share these things.

How about sharing web links? If you find a great site and you want to share it with everyone you can post a message with the URL but after a while more posts come in and it gets pushed down and forgotten. A link directory would keep links neatly organized for everyone.

These were all goals we originally had for PTU. Time and technology have finally made them possible.

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As often as not images are used to amplify or clarify a discussion. Hopefully the image gallery will not be in lieu of displaying an image directly in the middle of a discussion paragraph.

A gallery could be used to share a set of, say 30 photos, or files which are far too large to squeeze into the general discussion format.

Can we discuss the rules for the image gallery, such as restrictions on file size in MB, what kind of "life" they will have before dissolving or getting moved into an archive- that sort of thing?

Can images stored in the gallery be displayed as a linked image in the general Forum board (I would presume so- just as we should still be able to display images linked from external servers).

I noted that images in the Forums are limited to 477 horizontal pixels. That's a little smaller than some I've been sharing recently, but all of those were whacked down considerably from original file size anyway, so reducing it a little further is no problem for me- if I have to reduce them to begin with I'll just reduce it to 477 instead of 800 or 600 or whatever.

What other ideas with regard to images do PTUers have?

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By the way, the instructions were a bit confusing with regard to that 477.

Apparently you have to put in the desired display size, which can't exceed 477.

But then when putting in the address it asks you for the file size.

If it is asking for similar information twice, might that mean that the file size at the original location does NOT need to be reduced first- you just tell the software what that size is and IT will scale it automatically down to your desired display size (which can't exceed 477 horizontal).

That would be a neat feature which might save a step or two, compared to today.

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Marc, I remember the uproar over the last update of the message board. I am sure no one wants to go back to PTU1.

We will all feel the same way about PTU2 after we settle into PTU3.

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I'm running the third test run in as many days.

Based on user feedback I've done some things a little different.

The site is going to change. It will be the same but different. I think people will be surprised.

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Marc, whatever you finally put up as a board will be just fine. Change is inevitable. Just as we change as individuals, so too shall the methods by which we communicate change. I, for one, am just grateful to have a place to go to, and re-live my memories of the fair. I look forward to the next phase of this board no matter form it takes.

[This message has been edited by Plumber (edited 02-10-2004).]

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Well put, plumber.

I am also very grateful for PTU. Thank you, Marc.

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Me too.

This place, in any format, is one fabulous place! I have no doubt the new one will be better once we get comfortable with it.

Thanks Marc and Bill.

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I would like to support the previous statement. However you decide to alter this site, I will be pleased because I remain most grateful that it is here at all. The fact that it is a site of enormous academic and creative quality only adds to my gratitude. I look forward to the changes and offer my sincere thanks.

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Thanks everyone.

It's almost time to move. Before we shut down the board I'd like everyone to visit the test site one last time.

Remember when I said I'd done things a bit differently based on member feedback? You'll see that it's a totally new test site.

No need to create a new login. Your accounts are there waiting for you.

The snapshot of the UBB I used to build the new message board is nearly a week old. Everything will be included in the final move.

Explore the new message board. You'll notice it has both public and personal photo albums and an articles area. Nothing there at the moment.

I encourage you to test out the message board and post a message, however it may be best to confine posts to one topic such as Just Chat. Anything you post on the test site will be lost in the final move.

As always if you have any problems please let me know as soon as possible.

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