Friday, 14 December 2007

3 Months Old!

Folia is now a whole 3 months of age! And hasn't it been a busy 12 weeks for us since we pressed the big red "make site go" button - in that short amount of time we've already managed to develop a whole heap of great functionality:

- Journalling for your plants, your gardens and your gardening adventures
- A Seed Stash area to keep track of "not planted yet"s
- Groups for you to talk about everything and anything gardening related
- Geographic locations of gardens, to see who else is just around your corner
...and heaps and heaps of little tiny improvements far to numerous to mention.

We have still got lots of ideas left to go (we have to keep rewriting our list on the wall just to fit them all on) so this is still just the start...a big thank you to all of our wonderful (and patient) beta testers who have provided us with fantastic feedback and positive comments - it's really motivated us to keep going and keep trying to make things better :)

Saturday, 1 December 2007

Moving to our new home

We are currently in the process of moving servers. We started this process on Friday 11:45am GMT.

We've spent the last hours packing up all your gardens and have set them up ready for you when the site comes back online.

Depending on your internet provider this should take no longer than 2 hours or anything up to 96 hours (hopefully not though). Please keep checking back every so often and the next time you see the site it will be from our speedier, shinier new home!

UPDATE: The domain name resolved within 30 mins. Now we're just waiting for all of the Internet Providers to catch up and take on the new name (and stop redirecting to the old servers)

Thursday, 29 November 2007

Moving ahead with a new server

Well, after the last fiasco with MediaTemple's hissy fits, we took the plunge to trial a new hosting provider - SliceHost. Where MediaTemple protects you from the inner working of the services and servers you buy, SliceHost just drops you in there and lets you tinker directly withe the server itself. I can choose the operating system, reboot it, and install whatever I want on there.

Anyway not getting into the nitty gritty, it took just over 2 days to set up and using an old domain name we set up the myfolia site on the new SliceHost server just to test it out. One thing really stood out - it's fast. Blindingly fast! Pages load so quick you don't even realise that you're clicking on them. We're a little disappointed we didn't do this sooner :)

So - we're going to do a bit more testing and will be looking into moving over the site to the new server. But we'll keep you posted on that.

Tuesday, 27 November 2007

And we're back up and runing

Looks like MediaTemple has sorted the issue out on their side and have our site back up and running again. We're really sorry about it being slow for so long and even down for an hour or so last night whilst MediaTemple applied some fixes to the server.

Hopefully that will be the last of the issues as we're planning on moving to a new host very soon. We'll keep you all posted until that happens as we may have to take the site offline so that we can transfer all of the details over.

For those of you on  the waiting list give us a couple of days so that we can sort this out and we will be inviting you all in very soon!

Monday, 26 November 2007

Slow Site Performance

We're really sorry about the site being slow at the moment. Our hosting provider (MediaTemple) is having issues with "web latency" at the moment. Unfortunately, this has been going on since about 11pm GMT Sunday night (during a site upgrade - lucky us) and doesn't seem to have been fixed since.

The bad news is that they don't really know what's causing it or how long it's going to take. Hopefully it will be fixed soon and that we'll be back up to speed. The better news is that we're looking for another provider unless MediaTemple can move us from Grid.Cluster.1 to a more reliable server. Either way, trust that we're looking into a faster, more reliable and better hosting environment to host the site.

We'll keep you posted on what's going on.

Monday, 12 November 2007

Your Home Page Goodness

Ok, we are back up and running with some nice new shiny features.

Most noticeable is your new folia homepage, filled with lots of tools and summary info about your gardens and what's been happening around folia - you can now see all your gardening buddies, faves, gardens and latest plantings all on the one page.

We have also done a fair amount of tweaking to the "add planting" page and added some more intelligence to our plant matching logic to make finding your plant name and variety a snap!

So, have a wander around and let us know what you think of the changes!

Experiencing a little bit of turbulence...hold on tight!

We are currently deploying some fairly major changes to the site and have had to take the site temporarily down.

We are working like busy bees to get the site up and running again - shouldn't be too long.

Monday, 29 October 2007

But wait there's more...

Hot on the heels of the internal messaging we have even more folia goodness to share with you.

Wish List
So you stumble across a nice looking plant, like say Herb's Brahmi and you think to yourself "Hey, that would look good in my kitchen garden too! I'll just click on the Add to my wish list link and choose my kitchen garden and bam! There it is." 
So apart from the theatrics, we've hopefully made it pretty easy for you. Obviously with everything else on the site, it's our first draft so any feedback and suggestions is most welcome.

Tuesday, 16 October 2007

And now for some good news.... groups

Groups are here! This is going to be the start of something big and we'll be adding to it over the coming weeks so have a look and tell us what you think.

Also after the roll out of buddies we've also enhanced the latest activity page - so you can now follow the going ons of your gardening buddies.

As for the server issues over the last week. Our hosting provider has informed us that they have fixed the issues and the server should be coming up to speed again. We're sorry about the disruption.

Saturday, 13 October 2007

Gardening Buddies

We've just introduced Gardening Buddies to the site! So now you can add your favourite gardeners to your buddy list!

Friday, 12 October 2007

Site Hiccups

It looks like our hosting provider is fixing a latency issue with web and emails, which is drastically affecting the speed of the site as well as the odd error message when posting.

Monday, 8 October 2007

We have a beta queue!

We have some people now waiting very patiently on our invite list (oooh look at us! we have a waiting list now!) so we thought we should give you a bit of a rundown of this weeks plan:

This week we are aiming to go live with a version of the site that includes some interesting goodies that we wanted the next round of testers to come in with fresh eyes for. So we are holding back the invites until we get the new version up and stable - this should (hopefully) be around Thursday-ish.

We send out an invite email when we turn the beta accounts on, so you should know when you can login and begin testing...if you don't get an invite by the end of the week, drop us a note and we'll sort it out for you :)

Wednesday, 3 October 2007


We have a nice little update for today.... Searching! We're rolling this gem out little by little and seeing how it will work on the site. So you should now find a search box on the plants and people pages as well as the forum.

So let us know what you think!

Friday, 28 September 2007

Now with Garden Journals!

This is probably the longest release thus far but it's definitely the most worthwhile!

We have garden journals! For those that like to journal more about the garden itself rather then the individual plants, well, your time has come! And you also get all the trimmings so your garden journal will appear on the Journals page as well as being able to receive comments from other gardeners. You also get limited HTML ability so you can make things bold and italic as well as link to other sites. To help with your new tools we've also created a Help + FAQ section which we'll be adding to over the coming weeks.

Whilst I was slaving over Garden Journals, Nic was cleverly enhancing the Garden Plants and Garden pages. Now feel free to add the botanical name of the plant in your garden (if you know it), or fill in the zone of your garden or even give it a name to remember it by (for those that have more than one garden type).

More info on how to use all the new features will be in the forum. Hope you enjoy!

Wednesday, 26 September 2007

Folia Downtime Yesterday

Hey guys - we had a bit of server downtime today due to our current server reaching its memory allocations (due to the recent increase in users).

We've upgraded the servers, so we should be up and running once again.

Many many many apologies to any of our beta testers trying to access the site yesterday.

Monday, 24 September 2007

Woohoo! Favourites!

We've just updated the site and added some spanky new features for everyone to check out: like favourites! You can now add gardens and plants to your favourites list and see wo has your gardens and plants in their favourties list.

Other goodies in this release is harvesting and removing of plants in your gardens, a brand spanking new journals page where you can catch up on the recent happening of the folia gardeners, as well as a whole other bunch of other improvements!

Friday, 21 September 2007

Improvements - and our 150th member!

We've just gone and put up a mini release with stacks of little bits and pieces throughout the site, so beta testers - take a look around!

We have also just reached 150 members - not bad for two weeks we think! With the 150th member, we have now reached the limit for the original "seedling" link, so we will be granting people beta access from our waiting list every couple of days or so, depending on how many people we think we can handle.

Thanks once again to all our fantastic beta testers and the wonderful ideas they have come up with so far :)

Monday, 17 September 2007

New Garden Types and Planting Date Improvements

We've added a stack more garden types for you to choose from: Herb Garden (thanks dee), Verge (thanks jacqueline), cottage, vegetable, rock, butterfly, community, desert, hanging, heirloom, container and flower (all from nic - she's been busy!)

We've also tidied up the plantings page a bit. You can now use the date drop downs (thanks Herb, Arkantos, and everyone else for the suggestion) and added an "I Don't Know" checkbox for plants you can't remember when you planted (thanks Kari and Herb)

Nic's been working on the forums and made them a lot easier to use - you'll notice that you don't have to remember the previous threads when you reply to a post (thanks everyone for suggesting that one!)

As usual, let us know what you think!

Wednesday, 12 September 2007

Introducing the Folia Forum!

We've just gone live with the very first version of the folia forum - this is going to be the place you can go to give us feedback, site suggestions, and to help folia newbies. You can still feel free to contact us directly if you want to discuss something - alternatively, you can now post your ideas to the forum and see what other people think about them.

We also made a couple of little other improvements here and there while we were at it - you'll now notice the new "gardens" tab (thanks to ilkirk for the suggestion!) which shows you gardeners for each type of garden.

Let us know what you think!

Flickr Buddy Icons

Looks like we might have a little issue with saving the link to your flickr buddy icons - we are looking into it now.

Site Update

We uploaded a new version of the site last night that included some changes requested so far - here is a quick rundown of what we've changed (and who asked for it!):
  • We've added some links around the site to make it easier to go from your gardens to plants to journals (thanks Herb & Kelly)
  • Fixed the plants tag cloud - (thanks Herb)
  • Fixed the captcha on the sign up page for Safari users (thanks Marj Joly & Kelly)

Keep the feedback coming in - we are so impressed with the ideas and improvements you are suggesting already, its been a huge help!

p.s. We are working on the first bit of community goodness right now, so it shouldn't be too long before we put some more interesting things up for you all to test!

Tuesday, 11 September 2007

Beta testers

Well we went live with the beta site on Sunday night after Nic posted to a few forums in flickr and sending some direct emails out to some of the blogs we read. We thought that we'll put a limit on the initial beta users at 50 thinking that we'll reach it by the end of the month.

Well, we're going to reach it by the end of the day at this rate!

We couldn't be more happier with the response we're getting in both the signups and the website feedback. There are a lot of ideas and hopefully we'll be able to work through each of them.

If we do reach the 50 limit then don't despair, we're monitoring the signups for the time being and activating people almost immediately!


Welcome to the blog

Welcome to the myfolia blog. We've had to quickly set up a blogger account as we don't have the time to create a "proper" one on our site yet :). Hopefully, we should be able to find the time to write the odd article and let you guys know what we're doing and what new things to expect on the horizon.

We've got a whole bunch of ideas (and we hope that you have a whole bunch too!) and we're going to try and get them out onto the site a quickly as possible so that you all can try it out!

Remember bookmark this page, or if you have RSS then add it to your RSS reader and check back regularly.