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April 2007

By RBA - April 25th, 2007, 13:08, Category: General

If yesterday I was anticipating some changes to coRank, this morning I woke up to a total dismay when I noticed that going to www.corank.com brought me to some TiVO community site.

What happened is that, as part of this coming update, we had to change the nameservers for coRank, and the person who did it made a terrible mistake. For those of you who don't know, a nameserver is the machine that holds the information that translates URLs (such as www.corank.com) into numeric IPs (such as 72.9.152.120).

And the terrible mistake was that the person who configured the new nameserver, by mistake entered a different IP (just one number difference, but that's enough), so what happens now is that when you enter www.corank.com in your browser, the nameserver is telling your browser to go somewhere else to retrieve the page.

Of course, the moment I noticed I called the person who manages the nameservers and he has already put the correct IP but unfortunately, nameservers work in a way that it takes time for any change to propagate to other nameservers, so depending on how lucky you are, you will be able to access coRank sooner or later.

What can I say - I've been managing Internet services for over 8 years, and I've pretty much gone through almost every possible situation. Yet, this is the very first time that I see one of my services pointing to someone else's web page.

In the meantime, if you want to access coRank but are still getting that TiVO page, you can access the real coRank by entering the IP "72.9.152.120" in your browser, instead of the www.corank.com domain name. This is of course just a very temporary solution. I expect that in a few hour evrything should be back to normal.

And by the way, this was certainly not one of the small bumps I was referring yesterday. Oh well...

By RBA - April 25th, 2007, 0:33, Category: General

It's been a few quiet weeks after the initial revolt we had after the launch. Well, last week we actually moved the coRank servers to a new datacenter and the move was as smooth as it could be. Phew!!

But although things have been quiet in the outside, I've been working non-stop "in the inside", and now it's time to start bringing those things out.

So in the next few days, as all the new stuff is being deployed in the live servers, things may get a bit bumpy as you use the site. Of course, ideally you won't notice a thing, but still, chances are you might, if you just happen to access the site right at the moment we're doing the update or even moments after that. Our updates are usually very smooth, but this one comes with lots of internal changes (boring stuff like architectural changes, file system restructuring, database changes, etc) and some of these updates are impossible to deploy without taking the site down, even if for just a few seconds.

Now, as all this new stuff gets implemented in the production servers, you won't see any of the new features...yet! The idea is to get all the updates in place before bringing them all live. Hopefully in a few days, they'll pop up and I will definitely announce it here.

So yes, things are about to get interesting again!


By RBA - April 13th, 2007, 3:22, Category: General

At this very moment, our provider is experiencing some conectivity problems, so you may be experiencing some difficulties connecting to coRank. Hopefully they'll have it resolved soon.

This may be a good time to let you know that we have a scheduled move of all our servers this coming Saturday 14th sometime in the evening~night PDT to a new data center, so during that time there will be a scheduled downtime of about 2-4 hours, while our team phisically moves the servers from the current data center to the new one.

Also, this may also be a good time to inform you that recently we added automatic ping/trackback to all stories posted to coRank. This means that when you submit a story to coRank, if the original page includes pingback or trackback autodiscovery information, coRank will send a pingback/trackback to that original page. This will allow the owners of those sites to know their stories have been submitted to coRank. We're still weighting whether to leave this option enabled or not, but for now it seems to make sense. What do you think?

Last, something new and big is coming to coRank in about 1-2 weeks. I've decided to keep it secret for the time being, but I have the feeling it's going to be something that many people are going to find extremely useful, and with a bit of luck it may be a milestone that will bring coRank to a completely new level. We'll see :-)
 

By RBA - April 1st, 2007, 2:40, Category: General

It's that time of the month when our monthly ranking is magically - well, not so magically - reset to zero.

This means that those who just a few hours ago were in the top positions when visiting http://www.corank.com/tech/users/ now they're likely not there anymore.

But don't despair! First, the global ranking hasn't been reset (you can see it here). Second, because the counter is reset to zero for the monthly ranking, right now it takes very little for anyone to climb to position number one, or two, or three.

So if you're a seasoned veteran (well, coRank has been up only for less than a month, but I think it's ok to talk about veterans :-), just keep doing what you do, and you'll find your way to the top of the list fairly soon. And if you're new to coRank and wonder how in heaven could you catch up with those who have already been using coRank for the last few weeks, this is your chance to make it to the top (monthly) ranking. And once you're there, chances are people will be more "aware" of your existance, and you may find yourself becoming a source for other people, etc.

BTW, you may wonder, if the monthly counter has been reset to zero, who are those people that now appear in the first positions and why. Well, until we come up with a better solution, when everyone's monthly ranking is zero, coRank tends to score higher those who signed up first. So what you see now are basically the very first coRank users - who happen to be the people who participated in the closed beta phase.

But as you will see in the next few days, those lucky first users will be pushed down by people who are actually doing something (voting, submitting stories, becoming a source, etc.). It's just that, well, if everyone's monthly ranking is zero, we had to sort them some other way, but most likely we'll soon come with more creative ways to sort them for that very first day of each month.

One thing you should know is that the rankings (both global and monthly) are updated only once a day. So no matter what you or anyone else does in the next few hours, you will not see the table change until tomorrow.

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