Updates from November, 2009

  • Google Analytics Integration

    1:21 pm on November 22, 2009 | 0 Permalink
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    We’ve just finished integrating Google Analytics into our pro photo sharing websites which is great news for pro photographers who want to learn more about their traffic.

    Photo Website Analytics

    For those that haven’t heard of Google Analytics before, it’s free service offered by Google that generates detailed statistics about visitors to a website. Google Analytics can track visitors from all referrers, including search engines, display advertising, pay-per-click networks, email marketing and other sources. It’s one of the best statistics programs out there. For more info on what it can do Google has put together a great video.

    Start Tracking

    To get this setup on your Photoswarm Pro photo website you’ll need a tracking code. To get your tracking code from Google, follow their instructions for obtaining your tracking code here. You may need to create an account with them if you don’t have one already.

    Once you’ve obtained your tracking code (it should look like this: “UA-XXXXXX-XX”), copy that code, access the “Site Settings” in your Photoswarm photo website admin area and paste it into the Google Analytics field.

    Once done you can then check within your Google Analytics account and make sure it is receiving information. It takes about 24 hours for statistics to begin showing.

    Help!

    If you get stuck, Google has some fantastic help documentation or you can yelp for help over here and we’ll do our best to get you up and running.

     

    Google Analytics Logo

     
  • What Lurks Beneath?

    3:47 pm on November 19, 2009 | 1 Permalink
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    Looking at this blog over the last month you could be forgiven for thinking that there isn’t much going on at Photoswarm Headquarters at the moment. Au contraire! We’ve been so busy that we just haven’t had time to stop to write about it.

    As more and more customers have been using our photo sharing sites it’s become apparent that our existing infrastructure is on the path to reaching capacity. It is by no means at its limits yet but now is the time for future proofing.

    We’re currently moving our photo websites to The Cloud (specifically the Amazon Cloud). The best way to think about is a big shared pool of tens of thousands of computers at our disposal. It gives us unlimited room to expand to meet the growing needs of our customers.

    Unfortunately migration isn’t as easy as just flicking a switch. You have to build, test, migrate, test, rebuild, test some more and repeat until you’re completely satisfied. We’re almost satisfied now (we just have a few more tests to run).

    What does this mean for you? The most apparent initial change will be the performance. Our tests indicate that the existing sites run a magnitude faster than the old ones. Uploads, downloads and everything in between will benefit from the new machines.

    A less visible yet possibly more important change is redundancy. Your data will be safer then ever before with copies of everything replicated the world over. In the case of a serious critical failure (like a fire at our datacenter) we’ll be able to boot up servers in another part of the world to have things up and running again.

    Most importantly, from our point of view, it provides options. Features we’d like to be able to offer, such as full backups of your raw images, are now going to be possible. We’re free from the shackles of a traditional limited infrastructure.

    Yes yes, it’s a very exciting time indeed.

     
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