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Cory5412

2019-01-12 Site Downtime due to Editor Issues

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Hi everybody,

 

Thank you for your patience with the recent site downtime. And, a great thank you to @wthww for restoring site functionality! The issue turned out to be a piece of javascript that the site was loading off the Invision servers, which Invision had been having an error with. To restore functionality more quickly, we have hosted our own copy of this file and modified the site to use that.

 

If you haven't, and you have an account there, you should subscribe to the 68kMLA Twitter Account, because we posted all the way back on the 5th we knew something was wrong: 

 

I had posted this and created a notice in the bug tracker thread we've had for several years: 

 As we've been saying for years, these venues should be a destination for anybody who wants to 1) report something 2) see whether or not anybody else knows about the thing.

 

I want to reiterate: Please do not create spurious threads in the lounge for issues like these.

 

I want to address something else:

 

68kMLA is more reliable than the site has ever been. We have hiccups every once in a while, which are largely the result of the fact that "computers" and "humans" are collectively responsible for running the site. I understand that we can be a little bit opaque on issues such as why we chose this forum software or the architecture of the hosting we use. If there's interest in that, let us know - we can put together an article with more details.

 

Ultimately: the site has the unexpected problems it does because most of the problems we have are largely unpredictable. We can't set up the site so that it has unexpected problems when we expected.

 

The way I see it: the way to get from "around 95% availability" to "around 99% availability" is for $200,000 yearly to show up to hire both of us as full-time employees with benefits so we can cross-train one-another and be sure never to take vacations at the same time. In the end, the actual technology is the least expensive part of the overall solution here. We pay just around $1000 yearly in hosting and around $500-600 in domains, SSL certs, and software licensing. Above that, we both spend lots of hours working on our parts of what makes the site run. But, each of us has jobs and personal lives, so there are limits.

 

Even hiring a staff wouldn't solve every single problem that occurs, such as the recent one, which was caused by Invision and which took a multi-day support ticket to resolve.

 

But, this isn't a call for fundraising. It's just the truth: this site is our hobby. We run this site because it's our passion. We love the site and we love the community, and we both genuinely get something out of it, even though it might not be the center of our lives. Perhaps that's why the site has lasted so long and works as well as it does -- for its little foibles and for the to-do list we still have.

 

So, at this point in time, we aren't inviting discussion on process improvement. I like to think I speak for myself and @wthww, as information systems professionals, when I say as a service, 95% reliability is a perfectly fine target for a site like this: a hobbyist community for which you pay $0, which doesn't show advertisements, doesn't sell your information or tracking data, doesn't ask for donations, and has been online for over 17 years. We're in it for the next 17, too.

 

And, let me tell you, as someone who has been on the site sixteen of those seventeen years, it hasn't always been perfect.

 

Thank you for your understanding on this! If you have further questions, please either:

  • Send a forum pm to @Cory5412 or @wthww
  • Contact us via a on IRC, server is irc.oshaberi.ne.jp and channel is #68kmla. You can PM us at coryw or ulterior.
  • Send an email to coryw at stenoweb dot net
  • Send a DM to Cory5412 or 68kMLA on twitter.

 

If you open a new thread with the intent to enquire about this issue, it will at least be locked.

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