Written by Nathan Cloud on Tuesday, 08 Jan 2008.
Recap of 2007
2007 was a good year. We did a redesign (thanks dave p.), added a bunch of new features, fixed up many of our old features, expanded our userbase, collected more data, photos, trails, waypoints, and lastly, trail reports have really taken off (which is good, because protecting our trails is important!).
Numberwise? I am blown away by the amount of traffic this website is generating - which in turn is finally leading to some revenue. Both Straightline Bikes and Bikers Edge have purchased ads, and I have had a handful of other inquires! Which, to be honest, is all pretty foreign to me :) A big thanks goes out to both of them!
Heck, our very own dufman finished the season ranked #1 nationally for expert 30-34 riders!
What 2007 really boiled down to?
Much riding was done, and many new friends were made.
2008? What's cooking?
Well, the latter half of 2007 was quietly being spent trying to get all the geographic data we collect here out into the internet world - I was focusing mostly on getting data in the Google universe, but then live.com started indexing kml/kmz files... well, that was just gravy. And I gotta say, it was kind of a painful experience, but much progress has been made - do some google kml searches for mountain bike stuff here in Connecticut and chances are you will come across data from this site. Slightly even cooler, do some searches from within Google Earth and you will find a bunch of the same.
And if anyone really cares, I have been documenting this journey on a silly little development blog.
Now why is this important? Well, it folds into our master plan to distribute and trade data with all the other like-minded mountain bike websites out there. I already have a leg up on the "sharing our data" end of it with our "Build a RSS Feed" module which allows your to generate specific geoRSS feeds. Now I just have to find other sites that are willing to do the same.
On the other hand, the inbound end of this whole mess is the new map engine I have been working on. It is going to tie together the google maps interface with, well, everything. It will reinvent our map wiki, it will allow you to explore our biking universe more efficiently, it will integrate data feeds from other sites to help you get the most information possible, it will even wash your car.
Ok, so if none of that means anything to you, know that its gonna be pretty cool.
- A facebook ripoff type mini-feed / site audit will be showing up soon.
- Jerseys and other assorted schwag should in theory happen this year
- More map stuff: Direct upload to Garmin GPS's, network KML's....
- Hopefully more reviews and schwag (mass mailer WILL go out this year)
- Shooting to clean-up a lot of the backend processing done here
- Thinking about registering as a nonprofit
I think thats about it. If you have any feature ideas, comments, problems, whatever with this website - don't hesitate to contact me!
The Union is Strong, a bit strange, but Strong
I just want to thank everyone for making this place something special. Feel free to define "special" however you want.
Looking forward to a great 08!