Tuesday, May 22, 2007


I crashed on my mountain bike for the first time in two years. I could sense it coming that morning as I clipped my feet on to my pedals and started powering my bike along the dusty trails. I made the mistake of looking down at my bike and thinking about the scratches along the frame, then wondering to myself when I would crash because it had been such a long time since I had fallen.

I was real tired from riding Saturday, and so I set off down a cursed hill named Cactus that was already the site of grisly biker death (due to mountain lions) a good 4 years back. About a 16th of the way down the hill sure enough I hit some dusty and my back tire began to swing wide, it was go over a cliff in to the namesake of Cactus Hill, or enjoy a picturesque swan dive over the front of my bike in to an erosion formed mini-ravine. I opted to dive, and the judges were they present would have applauded my gracefulness as I slammed in to the ground tucked neatly in a ball and taking the blunt force on my shoulder and hip. Mind you years of training in martial arts (Ninjutsu) came in play immediately. Never break a fall with your hands, unless you enjoy broken wrists. I personally do not and was relieved when I stood up after tumbling three times down the hill only to find that I had some minor scrapes and a few weeds sticking out of my helmet. The "roadrash" up my leg and shoulder was only just starting to bleed, and all told I was in great shape. So was my bike.

Showering the next morning was like being immersed in stinging jellyfish. I miss having skin.

So on to business! We opened a download.com account and paid for a premium listing which was I think possibly the worst mistake ever. Their service was terrible. I opened the account on the 13th. The download showed up on the 18th. It took them 5 days to "process" despite the premium account being advertised as a one day deal. Then come the emails from upset downloaders that one they have sat through the godawful slowness of download.com their installer says "Archive is corrupt" when they try to install.

I test and get the same error. I have a friend test and he reports it installs fine, so their distributed network appears to have a rotten apple in the bunch.

It takes them 4 days to email back about the issue, and I get a form response.

I closed the account this morning and got my money back.

This leaves me in a weird place. Our download is rather big, and the stats so far have been promising. Download.com shows about 600 downloads, and that's only one of our 3 mirror sites from the main repository. How many of those were real, or completed, I cant say. That's another reason I think download.com is poor. Its not hard to see if a file completed sending in the weblogs for any of my other mirrors, they all give me access to those.

I'm not railing against download.com, I just want to share my negative experience. YMMV and all that. They were good at providing basically free bandwidth for people to download, I just don't think the headache was worth the 100 bucks.

At this point, I'm just keeping my fingers crossed that our web hosts don't kick us off for sucking down too much bandwidth. Then of course primary to that concern is that in one week, after the bulk of this weekends banner ad driven traffic realizes their trial period is ending, that we get some subscribers.

We are approaching 300 accounts in the database now. When we reach 500 I think I'll go buy another bottle of champagne. It was so tasty last week.

No comments: