Sunday, February 25th, 2007 9:45am UTC
By Luke, Thunder Lounge
Published on Thunder Lounge.
So we’ve received a few questions in regards to what’s been going on around the Lounge, and what we’ve been doing with our time. Well, that’s a legitimate question and one I’m slightly reluctant to answer. Mainly from a ruining the upcoming surprise kinda deal, as we have quite a few tricks and improvements coming up in the near future.
OK, I guess the cat’s out of the bag with the image for the article, so we’ll add a few more cryptic tidbits to further peak your curiosity. Needless to say, I’ve been busting my tail on improvements. Both of the visual and underlying stability kind.
Before that, though, we’ll catch up with a couple of our featured columnists and their recent events. (Got ya! )
So ol’ Franks been a busy little beaver. Recently beginning his transition from a steady schedule out in Colorado to a hectic pace of manning Sea & Anchor. Once again the sea calls, and he’s headed to answer. Unfortunately for us, that means a less than stellar schedule for the series of articles we’ve grown accustom to reading about the history of NASCAR and its people. Hopefully we’ll see a somewhat frequent contribution from his files, but we’re guessing the schedule for it will unfortunately be irregular for some time to come.
Then we have one Mr. Spencer, who’s still on the ball as well. His schedule has been less than clear for the past several months, and we’re missing his regular down to earth perspective. Definitely not one to hold his tongue, he brings a real look at some of the issues facing the fans and the sport today. We’re hoping he’ll be able to find a few spare moments on occasion to drop us something new, and help widen the voice of the Thunder Lounge once again. We must admit though, that his out of nowhere piece last week was a nice surprise.
So what about these “updates” to the Lounge?
Well, we’re not going to give everything away. However, the visual elements will come into play over the next several weeks, and you won’t want to miss them.
So of these improvements have been recommended/suggested by you, our beloved readers who without we would be yet another fish wrap or birdcage liner such as the SceneDaily blog.
First, we’re going to continue expansion and growth of our community.
Through this initiative, we will be expanding on the 20+ themes we currently have available to members, and be adding driver specific themes to our lineup. Currently, we (OK, I) have generated themes for 10 drivers on the local test site, and there will be more to come as well.
Next, we’ll be adding in some more community oriented features as well. Including a much requested feature for a network wide avatar. You’ll see these show up on your comments across the network, in the future when we re-open our private forums, and in various other aspects around the Thunder Lounge.
Next, we’ll be expanding our plugin selection for your use. Including our already handy dandy little feature that adds a copyright notice to your RSS feed, and one where you can specify a Creative Commons license if you would prefer.
How about some more widgets? Yep, we’ll be adding those too.
And much, much more coming over the next several weeks and months.
Something we keep getting asked about is, “What are the features and capabilities of my free website and blog?”
Well, we’ll be adding a pretty in-depth section which will cover a lot of the basics and capabilities of our community, and covering a lot of the major features as well. We’ll cover some of the basics, and expand on the initial information as we move forward.
We’re getting things going, and we’ll be playing with the site and server starting next weekend as the Cup guys take their first break of the season before seeing Las Vegas in two weeks. We will warn you though, that for the first couple of hours after we revise the site, it most likely will not look right in Internet Explorer. Of course, being the intelligent crowd that you are, you know Internet Explorer is junk and can’t draw its way out of a paper bag. If you haven’t yet, give Firefox its day in court. It’s available from Mozilla.com, and did we mention it’s much more secure and also FREE as well?
So, we’ll be doing this late at night to inconvenience as few of you as possible, but if something doesn’t “look right”, and you’re in Internet Explorer, give us a little bit to work with it. If it’s been a day, and it still doesn’t seem right, drop us a line and let us know.
We’ve been a little short on pushing our new offering and community building, but as we noted when we first launched it, we wanted to bring the initial service to you as quickly as possible. Look for even further expansion and updates as we move forward, and we’re always open to suggestions.
In the meantime, we’re going to get back to the grind as there is still quite a bit left to do before we can put the changes into motion. We were aiming for initial changes by April 1st, for which we’re well ahead of schedule, but kind of hoped for being ready by Daytona. However, in order to make sure it wasn’t rushed, we’re taking our time to make sure it’s done right.
After all, what other site out there let’s you build your very own website/blog in the NASCAR community? None. Maybe a simple “profile” page, but we’re leading the field and getting ready to put them all a lap down. Cutting edge code, personal user attention and support, great themes and additional features all make Thunder Lounge a great place for you to start or continue sharing your insight on NASCAR with the world.
And now, back to the show.