Thursday, 14 January 2010

Happy new year - and a engine upgrade for folia!

Hi all – a very happy new year to everyone, here’s hoping that this gardening year is even bigger and better than the last!

Nath and I have been busy working on a major behind the scenes update to the underlying technology running the site, which we finally released today. This means you should experience a speedier, more efficient site from now on, and it also means that we have a much more powerful set of tools to develop future functionality.

This being quite a massive change, the biggest part of this job involved a lot of testing and retesting. We think we’ve covered hopefully everything on the site, but it would be great if everyone could keep their eyes peeled for anything that looks or acts a bit strange and let us know in the Bugs & Issues group. We’re on bug fixing duty for the rest of the week, so hopefully with everyone’s help we’ll get any bumpiness ironed out pretty promptly.

For anyone interested in the techie explanation: We’ve updated to Rails version 2.3.5 (we were previously on 2.1.1, which was as old as the hills in tech years!) and upgraded a whole heap of gems that are in common use on folia. The biggest driver for this change was that we needed the oAuth integration mechanisms so that we could start work on developing login and other functionality using FB and other oAuth providers like gmail, yahoo! and twitter. It also paves the way for bigger plans such as mobile versions of the site.

We’ve also got a couple of new features that we managed to include in this major release that we’ll be announcing soon (or as usual, someone will find it and announce for us in the meantime!)