Josh has previously told you why web hosting is hard and why web hosting is easy, and now you’ll find out why it’s fun, too.
First, a little history. When we started doing web hosting way back when, the web was not like it is now. Most websites were all static html with pictures. Most of the ‘dynamic’ stuff you would see was the occasional animated gif. More advanced websites used standard cgi and from what I remember perl mostly ruled the roost. It did for us, at least! For the most part things like php, mysql, ruby (on rails), python, subversion, and WebDAV didn’t exist at all or were not in widespread use. Hotmail.com wasn’t even owned by Microsoft yet! Web hosting was a lot simpler back then and a pentium 100 running pre-1.0 Debian Linux could serve a lot of websites comfortably.
Things sure have changed!
Nowadays, it seems like you can’t throw a rock without hitting a new web technology with a zealout user community forming around it. There’s so many solutions people have trouble thinking of new problems to go with them! We pride ourselves on being faily well-versed in the arena of web technology but there’s just too many to keep track of. We mostly just wait and watch and see which ones start to catch on and develop real momentum.
And here’s the fun part!
As the true geeks we are it’s fun for us to learn about a new technology, and web hosting provides a huge amount of opportunities to do that. And since the technologies themselves are usually geared towards making cool websites, it’s even more fun! It seems like just about every year brings along another ‘must have’ ‘coolest ever‘ ‘best thing since sliced tomatoes’ web tool and along with it comes all the requests for us to support it. And every other month is some new upgrade or development on something we already support. So much fun to be had!
It’s not all fun and games, of course. Once we’ve learned about and integrated a new technology into our web control panel and hosting system, we start learning all of its dark secrets… all of the things about it that don’t quite work as advertised. That’s why web hosting is hard, too. Providing support for a new technology is generally much much harder and more time consuming than all of the original research and setup time.
The need to balance the fun with the work that comes with it is why we originally came up with our user-driven suggestion system (how Web 2.0 of us, way back in Web 1.0 time!) where all of our customers can vote on their favorite suggestions. We then can focus our energies on the things that everybody wants most.
If you haven’t voted on your favorite suggestions, do it now!