It started getting on my nerves (not that much really) yesterday but I was too busy trying to fix UGP bugs with my team to address this immediately. Anyway, it's been mentioned several times that UGP looks "too much like myspace", and even a "cheap myspace copy". I feel like I have to explain a couple things, I know that would make me and people who coded UGP (till & medick) feel way better.
So the original idea of what later became Ultimate Guitar Profiles has appeared two months before UG v5.0 launch (august, 2005). And it was totally not because of myspace, I hardly knew anything about myspace. I was using purevolume and dmusic and some other sites that I can't remember now. Having said this, I still respect all these sites and teams behind them.
Back then we were busy with tablatures, news, reviews, forums etc (everything but social networking) which I believe we are doing fairly good by now. Needless to mention all the infamous troubles with NMPA that have been taking a fair amount of my time. But what doesn't kill you makes you stronger. So we are not just still around, we are alive and kicking, eh?
Anyway, forget two paragraphs above now and answer a simple question -- what does it mean to be a copy of myspace? Having blogs? Ok, there are better blog spaces -- livejournal and blogger. Mp3 uploads? You remember how big was mp3.com before they got into legal troubles? Pictures? ok, why not a copy of flickr or photobucket then? Friends? Cmon, having friends was a vBulletin feature since version 1.0 I think. And it was before myspace even existed. Oh, you mean having all that sh*t in one place? Why not bebo or hi5 copy then? I won't even mention that in my humble opinion there is nothing on the Net more disorganized, poorly coded and layouted than myspace... not to mention the worst design ever Anyway, call it myspace copy or call it cheap myspace copy that will only make it more challenging for us to become #1 guitar community and guitar website, and who knows some day you will call myspace a cheap copy of UG
Obviously I will write a better story about how was UGP coded, but you see what we have here and it's not the final version, it's rather just the basis that we will be using for the further UG improvements. I believe the current UGP features will be less than a half of UGP of the next year. I'll post the list of features that we plan to implement soon.
Ok, so as you can see profiles are up for slightly less than 20 hours... Before I will post som statistics (which looks great) let me tell you a story.
So, originally we were planning to launch UGP on Wednesday, Aug 15th. We arrived early in the office (8am) to get prepared. When everything was ready (10am) and medick was about to hit magic "Start UGP" button, all of the sudden our DSL line went down, as it turned out there was some major problem in upstream provider. We thought "Ok, let's use that time to double check everything"...
By the time we were ready again it was lunch time, so we went to the store to get some food. When we returned, DSL was up, we were ready though I needed to go somewhere and was planning to return in an hour to hit the magic button again. When returned, medick said we have some major problems with forum (which is integrated with UGP). That was ~2pm.
At 2:10pm all UG servers went down. 10 minutes later we found that there is another major problem at our datacenter, where all the UG servers (10!) are hosted. The problem has been resolved in an hour though. When servers were brought back online, we found that now we have some weird problem with emails not going out from our servers. We tried to fix that fast, but it was a tough task to find the cause. So, the next three hours we spent finding the cause. It was found and fixed by 6pm. So we had to move the UGP launch to the next day.
Though as you know, next day everything went well
Ok, now some statistics. In the very first 16 or so hours:
- 7,000 profiles have been modified - over 1000 mp3 files have been uploaded, or 4.7Gb of music, or ~33hours of listening - 500 band profiles have been added - I've got 113 friend requests (update: 114 now haha)
It seems that all our efforts were paid off. Which is totally awesome. On behalf of UG Team, let me express our deepest appreciation of your appreciation of our work.
Stay tuned for more UGP featured in upcoming weeks!