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Wild Week!

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25

What a WILD week!  The TRIBE really came through with some super suggestions to improve the website.  So many, in fact, that we started a “Website Improvements” page to keep track of the priority and status of each suggestion.  Some of the suggestions are great, but technically impossible, or at least require a lot of custom coding to implement.  Others I implemented right away, like improving the menus for mobile devices.  The techies are still working on condensing the headers a bit further, trying to optimize things for you guys that use mobile devices.

By FAR, the most requested features were a TRIBAL Blog and Forum.  As you can see, the Blog is now active and I hope to have the forum active within a week or two.  As you can imagine it isn’t something you just turn “on” with software.  When I do it, it should be RIGHT, or as close to right as we can get it.  In all likelihood there will be another LockLabGiveaway next week to solicit ideas for Forum subjects that you’d like to see covered.

We moved everything to a cloud distributed network (CDN) to improve speed, reliability and security.

Speaking of LockLabGiveaways, there were 437 emails containing suggestions, giving entrants much better odds of winning than after the Vorax review video where each entry only had a 1 out of 5300 chance.  Still, the techies and I read every single suggestion.  Selecting the winner was not easy, but one really stood out: Andrew Barrows.  He picked the site apart, identified everything from grammatical errors to software glitches, and made over 20 excellent suggestions for improvement.  After reviewing everyone’s suggestions I spent several hours on the phone with the techies, after which we all felt pretty beat up.  We hear you and are working to make things as close to perfect as possible.

We moved everything to a cloud distributed network (CDN) to improve speed, reliability and security. During the first week we were on a…lesser server… and the site was HAMMERED by two DoS attacks and brute force attacks. Every day the site was scanned HARD by automated scanners, which ate up a lot of bandwidth. The server just couldn’t keep up. To counter that, I moved to Amazon’s AWS commercial servers.  We now have multiple, redundant servers that scale up according to demand, are fault tolerant, and use Amazon’s ELB (Elastic Load Balancer). More demand, more servers kick in. On top of that, I opted for a CDN, meaning the website is on servers everywhere. If you are in Germany or the UK, you are accessing the Euro-based CDNs. Obviously, this improved speed dramatically for everyone.

I want to thank EVERYONE for their suggestions to improve the site.

Several of you ran security scanners against the site and found remnant documents left over from development, and we’re deleting it as it pops up. The techies are still setting things up and I’m still drafting content, but eventually we’ll get there.  To improve security I’ve applied for a green bar Extended Validation (SSL).  The process takes about a month so they can complete the background investigation. Once that’s active we’ll have site encryption equal to any financial institution and you’ll know immediately that you’re on an encrypted site because you’ll see the lock and green bar next to the address at the top of your browser. The Internet can be a mean place and we are armoring up and arming ourselves against it.

Anyway, this makes for a long blog. I want to thank EVERYONE for their suggestions to improve the site. If you think of any more, please don’t hesitate to send them in.

Thank you!

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Comment(25)

  1. I just have to say a big thank you (from the Netherlands) for what you’re doing for the tribe.

  2. BILL,what do you think the attraction is to lockpicking for so many people?Is it just the thrill of being able to beat the security,or are there more nefarious motives?I notice you still constantly remind everyone to “STAY LEGAL” – Is that just to cover yourself,or do you believe the saying that “There’s a bit of larceny in all of us”?

    1. I can tell you, for me it is my entire life I was told that you have to have the all powerful key to open this or that, now everytime one pops open I get a little evil grin

  3. I’m loving it! It feels good to have a small part in designing the site, I think it makes everyone feel even more “tribe like”. I can’t believe how far it’s come already, my website has taken years to get in order. Lock Lab is like therapy, that doesn’t cost $150/hr!

  4. Got another suggestion. Put social sharing buttons more prominently instead of the share link and pop up.

  5. Always looking forward to your new video’s. Have access to lots of locks from BEST brands to Brinks, and always look for the info on the locks to get a good idea of what to expect. I’ve gone from a zero to a one in almost no time at all, but enjoying it just the same. Great site with the resources that a newbie like me needs and appreciates without having to guess if they sell junk or not.

  6. Congrats on the site Bill, some don’t realize the time and effort it takes to do something like this and your dedication to the hobby and your fans is outstanding! A small correction, AWS’s ELB is *Elastic* Load Balancing. 🙂

    1. Thanks Jason, I appreciate it & have made the correction. In my non-techie brain elastic is for underwear, electronic is for computers. Jes sayin’…

  7. Bill, you have come a long, long way from your first silent youtube video,….. bet you never thought you’d be running your own website with ‘the tribe’.
    Just hope your not over doing the work load.
    Take a break n a beer, or 3 the tribe is here to stay…
    Great work, Great site. Beers cold!

  8. Really happy to see the large number of responses, especially for submitting an email which took more thought than just opting in. The Tribe is already a strong community, which looks like is only getting better thank to Bill’s open mind and the authenticity of the members. I’m proud to be a member! This is going to be the #1 site for all things lock picking! Congrats!

  9. Yeah great job bosnianbill. I’ve been a fan for going on three months now. I wanna let you know I’ve tried to pm you and I don’t have that option. It’s not letting me do what you say I go to your profile and leave a comment on the discussion link. Please message me threw YouTube if you don’t mind please and help me out.

  10. This website, like so many things, is a work in progress, but is still easy to use, navigate and chock full of info. I have only taken up lockpicking in the last 2/3 months and by watching your videos, have picked up a lot of knowledge. I have taken your advice and purchased a 7 pin Ultimate Adversay lock, so now my skill is improving every day, though I still find myself being stymied a time or two. So I return to your videos to find out what I’m doing wrong, or at least different. Thanks for your help.

  11. great bill,so crazy to think 3 months ago there was a small core of us,and now a spangly new site with top info and more and more tribe members! top job,you should be proud mate

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