In Reply to: I think reports of bimmer.org's demise are... posted by Alan on November 09, 2000 at 08:35:58:
I've been working with Roadfly over the last few months to merge up with them as bimmer.org is waaaaay too busy of a site for one person to handle alone. There are some features I always wanted for bimmer.org but never had time to implement (working 300 hour months at my "real" job can do that...), like a free photo gallery, free web space, free classifieds, etc. You now see those things available due to teaming up with Roadfly. I don't understand why people don't see this as a positive thing.
About half of the current message boards are hosted on a server at Roadfly, and half of them are hosted on a server here at bimmer.org. They were moved for the sole reason of sharing bandwidth. I don't know if people noticed, but a couple of months ago, site response was becoming very sluggish due to the fact that during the middle of work days, a full T1 was being saturated. By splitting the boards between two servers, this problem has been eliminated and there is not a bandwidth crunch any more.
As with all upgrades, there are growing pains. Keith's missing banner is one of them and should be resolved today as soon as I find out why it isn't showing up.
There are more new features to come. I hope people will appreciate them instead of being bothered by changes. One thing that we are hoping to do within a few months is to go to a database backend for the boards. This will make for better searches of the archives and for a user-customizable front-end to the boards where you can choose whether you want to view the boards in their current format, or sorted by some other critera than reverse date, or see only top-level threads, or...well there is still a lot of work to do, but you get the idea. One of the problems is that there have been over 1,000,000 HTML posts on bimmer.org since I started the archives, and unfortunately I have tinkered with the message board software a little bit along the way so the form of the HTML in those posts isn't consistent. It is going to take some work to write a program capable of understanding the different changes that can work its way through all of the archives and load them into the database. I view this as highly important, as the archives are the history of this board and contain a lot of important information, as well as a lot of fun memories for me.
I suppose most people on here know that in February of this year I sold my M roadster and bought an XK8 coupe. I got a deal I just couldn't turn down. Despite that (and since I thankfully avoided a public lynching over it ;) I remain a huge BMW fan, am still a member of the BMW CCA (and of the Z register as far as I know although I haven't received a register in a while), and plan on remaining an active part of these boards.
It is true I sometimes get tired of them...tired of the time it takes...tired of criticism, etc. That's what the old saying "if you can't stand the heat, get out of the fire" is for. But, I enjoy the interaction with everyone too much to just drop everything and walk away from the boards. You know it's pretty bad when I go to visit my parents for Thanksgiving or Christmas, bring my laptop with me, and try to explain to my mom why dinner needs to wait just a little bit "because I just want to check on the boards really quickly". :)
In any case, the only intent behind merging with Alan, I also read a Honda motorcycle board and the webmaster there was getting very busy with it and work and was able to delegate some message board control over to a couple of trusted and knowledgeable people to help him. Perhaps this is something you should think about if it's possible. I like the face lift and I'm sure the future changes will also be worth the effort you are putting into it. Thanks again.
Roadfly is to make things even better here. I am, and Roadfly is, open to suggestions. (Now please I don't want to hear the word 'registration', ok? ;)