WorldMaps Update

As some of you may know, I recently shut off WorldMaps registrations temporarily while I worked on a few items on the punchlist -- they were:

1)  Moderate new registrations.  Previously, registrations were open without moderation.  What ended up happening is that a few high-volume, commercial sites started using the service.  While I'm grateful the service is interesting enough for them to use, WorldMaps isn't designed to handle that kind of volume right now. 

2)  Work on separating the application from my site, giving it its own domain.  This hasn't been done yet, but will be accomplished sometime ...

3)  Work on a way to archive or provide snapshots of data.  This is a bit of challenge given the way data is aggregated now.  At the end of the day, there will likely be folks who don't agree with these decisions, and they would influence data retention/timeline, WorldMap rank, etc.  I haven't figured this out, yet, either.

4)  Allow all account owners to download the stats of their site.  This way, you can pull the data out that your site has logged, and do with it as you wish.

5)  Create a leaderboard.

So, in the meantime, I put a simple moderation system in place.  When an active user requests a WorldMap account, the request gets put into a registration queue.  Every-so-often, I'll go through the queue and approve/decline requests.   When requests are approved, an e-mail is sent to the account owner that they can log in to further set up their account and get their image tags. 

What I'd like to make clear, though, is that the priority for WorldMaps was to make a simple geographical hit counter that fostered a very tiny amount of competition among friends.  That's why there's stats like World Domination and Rank.  (Can you tell I'm a gamer?) 

While I wish I could leave registrations open to everyone who wanted to use the service, it's currently not in the cards until I can move the service to a more dedicated hosting provider.  The priority given to accounts is:  Microsoft bloggers, technology bloggers, personal websites, then others.  

Unfortunately, a small handful of community sites and forums consume about 95% of the traffic and database space.  I apologize in advance for accounts that I need to close.  Going forward, accounts will have one of the following statuses: Active, Pending, and Inactive.  Active is just as the name implies -- a typical, active account.  Pending are requests that are awaiting moderation.  Inactive are accounts that exist, but not logging traffic.  All of the features will still be available -- for example, you can still see the map, look at stats, etc.

When accounts go to an inactive status, I'll notify the owners. To reiterate, all of the features will still work, so it will give owners an opportunity to decide what to do, download their data, etc.  I won't delete those accounts for some time -- at least 30 days, but my goal is more like 60 or 90 days. 

In more bad news, I have sunk further to a ranking of #7.   Bummer.  Damn you Tim Heuer and AskPerf blogs. 
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