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About time!

March 12th, 2007, 3:12

By in News
Yes, it's been a very long time since the last post here in the ZoomClouds blog, and I think, like the title says, it's about time I'll post an update on the project.

While there hasn't been any major development on ZoomClouds in the last several months, yes we've fixed a few bugs here and there, and what's even more important than that, last week we took the ZoomClouds database and moved it to a dedicated server. Up until now, ZoomClouds was sharing the database server with other projects - of course each of them using their own database, but all running on the same server.

However, both ZoomClouds and the other projects were starting to slow each other down to a point that I figured it was about time that ZoomClouds got its own database server. And after a brief downtime of about 1 hour, all data was safely moved to a new server.

With this move, first I want to make clear that ZoomClouds is far from abandoned. Quite the opposite. Having now a dedicated database server is above all a commitment that we plan to continue running ZoomClouds for many years to come. Also, this move should have speeded things up a bit, despite the data in ZoomClouds just keep growing and growing every time a cloud is reanaylized.

Also let me tell you what things we're planning to do in the next few months.

First, complete and absolute internationalization. Someone has argued that ZoomClouds is good at extracting English terms and nothing else. That isn't quite true because the two word analisys tools used by ZoomClouds don't discriminate words based on language, although it is tue that our content analysis tool learns more as it processes more data, and since most of the content that ZoomClouds analyzes is in English, it may show that it knows a bit better how to handle terms English.

The "complete and absolute internationalization" project refers to enabling ZoomClouds to use and understand non-Latin languages, or in other words, to make it UTF-8 compliant. Today it is not, and so for example, clouds from a CJK language (Chinese, Japanese and Korean) look like crap.

The second improvement I plan to make within the next few months is to design a better caching system, so that the clouds do not need to be re-calculad everytime they're drawn. The current caching system is not terrible but it can be improved a lot, and that's what I plan to do.

The third improvement - but only after these other two are complete - is to offer a private label and ad-free version of ZoomClouds, so that you can display your tag cloud in your blog or website, and when people click on a tag, they are presented a page without ads (at least without our ads) and branded to resseblme your own site, so your visitors don't get the feeling that they've left your site. The ads- free service will not be free, but the private-label service will.

Anyway, that's it for now. I apologize for not having kept this blog a bit more up-to-date. As these new developments are made, I'll be posting them here.


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