Ok here we go. Bringing another year to a close ...
- Rooma Zoom Zoom! The very first thing that comes to my mind when thinking about 2000 is how fast it went for us!! I honestly feel like I blinked and it was gone. It was a busy year on the backside for FutureQuest, with a lot of internal changes taking affect, in an effort to make the front side better. The hardest part about those types of changes is they aren't readily visible by the site owners, like software upgrades would be, however if you look closely the results certainly are noticeable!
We started the year by surviving the Y2K issues, seemingly the biggest no-news news around this year. Quickly after that FutureQuest finally decided to Incorporate. This was Uncle Sam's upgrade
New servers were brought on throughout the year including ASTRO, PHOENIX, DEXTER, DEEDEE, RASMUS, and QBERT as well as MySQL02 and MySQL03. We also brought quite a few maintenance and administrative servers online.
The new servers obviously paved the way for the need of new cabinets, and switches etc as well as stronger redundant bandwidth pipes. As such 2000 brought us a NOC move, which gave us everything we needed in that area including the redundant lines. This created the equivalent of an OC-192 backbone pipe with serious power backup for all of FutureQuest to enjoy.
New features brought into place on the newest servers included dedicated IPs and PHP4 among other things. This has carried it's good and bad points for FutureQuest as it allowed us to service the newest accounts with the newest tools however it also upset some of our older account holders as it will not be as simple to bring their servers up-to-date. A bit of a struggle for sure. However, 2001 will bring about many upgrades for the older servers, which will bring them up-to-speed and make them equal to the newest servers once again. We have always upgraded the old to offer the same as the new. Some upgrades take longer than others but in the end it happens. 2001 is going to be a heck of a year for upgrades
Some other notable additions in 2000 were a new Service Desk, QuestAffiliates, and Automated MySQL setup/password changes.
The Service Desk has improved sales/support/billing requests by leaps and bounds. The way it has allowed site owners and FutureQuest alike to track and search requests has proven to be a tremendous improvement overall.
QuestAffiliates goes without saying... It has provided FutureQuest with a simplified way to thank many people for recommending us as a host!!
The automated MySQL setup with password changes has improved the speed (instant!) of obtaining MySQL activation along with allowing for a painless instant way of making the password change if/when needed. Things like this have a way of improving technical support as well since their time is better spent supporting rather than activating
2000 also introduced FutureQuest to the world of staffing. We all knew there would come a day when we couldn't do it all alone hehe. We gained some and we lost some over the year but I am proud to say that what we lost we lost on good terms and what we gained has proven to be most valuable for all involved. Brian, the do-it-all, who has helped each area of FutureQuest time and time again by his willingness to go here and there and do this and that on a moments notice. Paul a tremendous help on the administrative side of life, Sam a spectacular programmer who is building up a storm to bring all of us new things in 01, Bob our tech support guru who has taken the service desk under his wing and works tremendously hard to ensure its usefulness for all who make contact, "money Bob" our accountant who many may never meet but a blessing he was for me as well as FutureQuest!
We topped off the year 2000 with our first ever give-away. We learned all about bulk mail, international mail, t-shirt printing, company paraphernalia etc... I haven't decided the success rate of that adventure yet lol. Overall it was worth it as I was able to get some neat stuff into the site owner's 3D hands, which I absolutely enjoyed. I've also learned a great deal on how to improve that process for the next time! I'm sure we'll do it again in 2001 as I've already got a new idea brewing for ways to improve the process for all involved
What I noticed most about 2000 was the improvements TeRRa (aka Andrew) made for us all. A year of speed and stability. He was able to take raving hot servers and tame them in ways I didn't think possible. I do feel for him in 2001 as he makes them raving hot again with upgrades!
Andrew (aka TeRRa), as many have noticed, built the new servers, from scratch with a brand new design. Some of the new core features were able to be back ported to the servers that went live prior to the changes, and some were not. The result overall and most noticeable is the speed and stability of the servers. Those who remember SIX in the early days have certainly enjoyed her ability to remain up for over 90 days solid and a controlled reboot taking very little time to clear her pipes
. All servers in 2000 have enjoyed speed and stability and we are all quite proud of that accomplishment. As a fitting end to the year, every single server online has enjoyed 100% uptime in December.
On the backside of FutureQuest it was a year of education, growth, endurance, and changes.
It seems as if all of 2000 was about preparing for things to come in 2001
Let's hope we did it right
So with the very very best wishes I say:
HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE!!!!!!!!!!!
[This message has been edited by Deb (edited 12-31-00@5:04 pm)]