A couple weeks ago, I improved the layout of the site from something horrible to something that could now charitably be described as “passable.” I’ve performed some other routine maintenance work as well, such as improving speed times and other stuff on the back end like that. I really wish I would have paid attention a little bit more during my sophomore year Computer Science class, and then maybe the learning curve wouldn’t be so steep.
The other update worth mentioning is the change to the comment stream. When I shifted to the most recent layout, I intended to keep the comments with WordPress because I finally had gotten the SPAM filter down and it seemed to be serving its purpose quite well. Unfortunately, with the recent site update, it was not allowing users with Google Chrome to make any comments to the site, and since that is the predominant web browser that people use when browsing here, that was a problem that eventually needed to be fixed so that 60-70% of the readers would actually be able to comment.
Instead of tinkering with WordPress, I just added “Livefyre” which is a real-time commenting system that has gotten some mixed reviews, but seemed like it would be good enough to get the job done here. It lets you comment through Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and a few other options, and if none of those appeals to you, then you can just create a quick Livefyre account for your commenting purposes. It should be a way to get us to a point where everyone that wants to comment here should be able to do so.
While Livefyre was able to install successfully on this site, it was having some trouble getting the old comments loaded up as well. I created a ticket with Livefyre to get the old comments added, and hopefully they will get restored sooner rather than later. But for all the articles going forward, you should be able to leave a comment with Livefyre.
We’ll give it a trial run and see how it plays out. On my computer, the site now loads in six seconds instead of twelve, so that is a modest improvement, and now that we’re close to full comment functionality, we should be in a better place now than these past few weeks in which only one out of four users had the power to comment.