Thursday, October 9, 2014

Oh, What A Revolting Development!

Who was it that said that, anyway?

Well, as a quick Google search just told me, it was one of my childhood favorites, none other than William Bendix in "The Life of Reilly".

As for my revolting development...  I awoke one morning about a week ago to my site being down.  And, it wasn't a matter of a simple repair to get things up and running again.  (I thank God my faithful members were patient, with my promise that I'd be back up in no time, and better than ever.)

My best Left Coast buddy
I also thank God for friends in high places.  And in this instance I'm talking about my great West Coast friend, Mike Mahony, who is as much a whiz with the guts of a website as I might be with the X's and O's of my game.

I guess I shouldn't forget to thank my sweetheart, either, because Brenda surely had to tip-toe around a batch of eggshells as I panicked over getting that site back up and running.  She kept the coffee and eats coming, as well as taking little Raggs out for his walks too many times.
Anyway, I'm usually of the opinion that one downer can spawn as great an upper.  So, while that website crash was surely the downer, Mike and I eventually decided to make the resurrected site even better than it had ever been before.  (Oh, while I might like to be on the cutting edge with hockey training, Mike can be even toooooo happy to tell me that I'm a little slow on the uptake when it comes to computer techie stuff.  So again, I'm thankful I had him there to pick me up or kick me in the pants.)

In the beginning, we were just trying to recoup nearly 700 posts my site had amassed since it launched in October of 2008.  I'm talking great articles here, that I could never recreate, and I'm also talking about audio programs and tons of videos that I'd never in a hundred years reproduce.

As we breathed some sighs of relief with that stuff, Mike and I started talking about website themes.  I happened to love the original one -- and I was extra comfortable with it.  Mike just laughed at that, however.  As he tried to convince me, there were numerous benefits to newer site designs -- or themes, including far greater security.

Finally, in the middle of all the other craziness, I messaged him to say, "Mike, let's do it!"  And, by doing it, I meant I was ready to go along with the change in themes.

Off he sent me to a page of recommended themes that reminded me of the large book a carpet salesman might flip through to show us his wares.  Thank God again, when Mike suggested a couple he thought would be ideal for the nature of my site.  Ya, he was right in narrowing things down the way he did, and I especially liked one he pointed me towards.  So again, I said, "Let's do it!"

The rest of this story would bore most folks silly, because we spent most of our remaining time just guts-ing out the changes.  Links had be checked and rechecked -- remember, there were close to 700 posts that needed to be easily found by the members.  And so were there a bunch of features from my old site that had to be converted to the new theme.

As for the other positive changes -- beyond a great new look...

I created one new area that was long overdue.  I mean, I'd begun worrying recently, that so many posts -- although each very valuable, was burying some of my best stuff.  In other words, a video I did on troubleshooting breakouts might never be found by a new member, nor might a series I did on puckhandling, nor another I did on enhancing the hockey shot.  With that, I created a new, very visible category I plan on changing about once per week, that now labeled as "My Best Posts".

She never stops smiling
Oh, and one other little monkey wrench Mike and I (and Brenda) dealt with just about ever day (and night) since things went nuts...  I said that my techie buddy is from the West Coast, but I failed to remind readers that that puts us three hours apart -- yawn.  Ya, we were working long hours, and even longer still when you consider the time differences.  I mean, Mike might be raring to go at 10pm PCT, while my mom and Brenda had long gone to bed, because it was 1am here on the Correct Coast (LOL).

And so it is, though -- or just about...  I did my final touch-up stuff most of this morning and afternoon, and Mike pulled the trigger to launch the new and very much improved site late tonight.  There's more for me to do, for sure, but at least the site is up and running, and it's including a batch of new hockey advice.  I'm going to bed -- it's nearly 2am, but not before taking one last look at the new site -- aaaaaaaaaah... 

I welcome you to do the same, and to let me know what you think: