Thoughts on WAN and WordPress

The difference the
WAN upgrade is going to make can't be overestimated. There's clearly a large latent demand from people who are avoiding use of it just now. It would be interesting to capture some stats on what it's doing now, if only to be able to quantify the benefit of the investment.

Today I met a parent of an S6 student. Her son has been frustrated by slow internet access in his school. On the positive side, though, he'd been very enthusiastic about
Mr Bray's Geocasts as a revision tool at home. Mum reported arriving home and being very puzzled to hear Mr Bray's voice in her living room. She was pleased to hear the news of the upgrade.

I also met a teacher this evening who's now doing all email at home, as it's now taking too long in school to be usable. She's also looking forward to being able to use web sites with her classes without having to carefully select web-based applications that can be downloaded and started up well before the class arrives…

I'd a useful conversation with
Ewan about Exc-el site development. It looks like migrating existing Exc-el weblog posts to WordPress will be straightforward, but migrating comments won't be. Our plan is to migrate all the posts across for each weblog, and then manually move the most recent comments. The archive of eZpublish Exc-el weblogs will be left on-line, so full comments will be accessible there.

If you're an Exc-el blogger, maybe you could have a think about what name you want for your new blog? They'll be of the form Ideally, we'd like the names to be more helpful, and meaningful, than they are just now. The owner's name may mean something to us, but a name that conveys what the blog is about would help potential readers.

Hopefully new
WordPress blogs will be live this week. Just need to sort out a conflict between the requirements of
eZpublish and WordPress. Each application installs a
.htaccess file for server overrides. It would be nice if you could just put the separate commands into one file, but it's not proving that simple… eZpublish doesn't like the WordPress bit!

Exc-el has moved house

Exc-el has now grown up and gone off to live on its own. It lives on its own server now, instead of sharing a home with lots of other little web sites. This is a common stage in the growth of a web site. The benefits of doing this include:

  • Improved performance: The performance of our shared server was sometimes slow, and this was off-putting for contributors.
  • More storage capacity: Additional space was needed for additional applications such as WordPress blogs.
  • More flexibility: We are much less constrained in what we can do as we now have more control of the server software.

The changeover took place over the weekend, and I've been working to resolve teething problems yesterday and today. I was having difficulty logging in, which I seem to have fixed by increasing a server time-out setting. I've been able to see from log files that some other people – sorry, can't tell who – have been hitting the same problem.

Please test out everything, and let me know either by
email or by leaving a comment here if you notice anything that's not working as you'd expect.