URL Shortening

I have added simple URL shortening to the site, but it’s not well integrated into anything else that we do, but if somebody wants to use it, let me know and I’ll set up a username/password for you.

New Site Layout & Forum

I spent the last couple weeks thinking about how to best improve the usefulness of this site, while cutting down on some of the spam users that were showing up.

So now, I’ve finally gotten it all done after being up WAY too late working on it last night, and fighting off some crazy server errors this morning.

Here is the latest version of the blog. I have updated the layout to feature the parts that people care about (the standings, mostly). The new layout/theme is hopefully a little easier on the eyes as well, it was a necessary change as the old theme was linked to the old forum directly.

In the process I have updated a couple of the scripts behind the scenes. The sig images are the most important. All data has been transferred to the new forum system, so you should be able to seamlessly update anything you already had. If you think you’ve lost some data, let me know. I still have all of the original data backed up. I have also implemented some new ways to access the sig images so that they can be even EASIER! The last step of that process that I am working on is allowing you to use a username instead of a user_id to access those images. Learn about that process here: c2TC Forum – Sig Images

That brings us to the MASSIVE update to the forums!

The old forums were a pain to use, hard to navigate and basically useless in light of all the other types of communication around. So, I upped the ante by installing Simple Machines Forum software and importing all of the necessary data. So, go over and get signed it. You’ll need to reset your password, or I can reset it manually for you (just email/DM/FB Message me). I am working to add a Shoutbox (simple style chat box) to the software so that we can foster slightly less formal communication.

The new forums should work like most of the other forums people use. If you have any questions about it’s operation, let me know.

Things still left that I’ll be updating soon:
– Shoutbox on Forums
– Facebook Group Integration (researching this possibility)
– URL Shortener (c2.tc is pretty short, and bit.ly keeps making my links longer!)
– Ads (I’m hoping to figure out how to do some non-instrusive ads to help pay for the bandwidth/time that I spend on this endeavor)
– Forum Banner

If there’s anything else you’d like to see integrated with the site, let me know and I’ll get working on it! My goal is to make this site the HQ for the team and a great repository of rowing knowledge.

Cool new erg goodies!

Just got back from volunteering (no racing this time) at the Head Of The Hooch Regatta in Chattanooga. It’s put on by the Atlanta Rowing Club (my club) and Lookout Rowing Club in Chattanooga, TN. It was an absolutely stunning event. 1900 entries, 9000 rowers, and 190 clubs. And with few exceptions, the weekend went off flawlessly.
I was a little sad that my volunteer position kept me from being able to see the vendors on the first day, because a few weren’t there today, and most of the good stuff had been picked clean. (Most notably, the JL store and the official shirts) However there were two vendors that were still around that were GREAT, and I’m so glad they hadn’t left. The first was Shox-Box, who brought two ergs outfitted with their front and rear “floating” boxes. It was a great feeling to erg on them, it obviously puts less stress on your back, and it provides a fairly realistic rowing sensation, similar to a single. The second was a complete surprise, the Shimano company who typically makes Bike accessores was there showing off their new “Shimano Rowing Dynamics” system. It’s a shoe similar to a bicycle shoe, with a similar cleat under the ball of the foot which is paired to a special foot-stretcher. I have never felt so completely connect to the erg or been able to generate the kind of explosion at the drive that I could today. It felt great, and on top of that the pivot motion that is incorporated into the foot-stretchers means absolutely no pressure points or rubbing. I felt like I could have rowed around the world in these, the difference was amazing.
I am trying to get a little bit of info from both of these vendors right now to get pricing info, but if there is a lot of genuine interest in these products and a lot of people interested in purchasing them, I will look into organizing a group-buy.

These are the basic prices I am looking at:
Shox-Box:
– Complete system: $389.98 Model D, $479.98 Model E
– Rear Shox-Box: $149.99 Model D, $249.99 Model E
– Front Shox-Box: $249.99

Shimano System:
– Foot Stretchers: 51500 Yen (~$663.14US)
*What I think you could actually use:
– 2 Binding Assemblies (R & L): 43300 Yen (~$532.33US)
*Required either way:
– Rowing Shoes: 18600 Yen (~$228.67US)