Good news: Grant Hutchinson has posted updates to the Newton Community.
After some really bad news this past winter, things have been quiet at the Newted Community, a resource and gathering place of MessagePad-minded folks. But after moving to Bluehost and setting up a new look and feel thanks to WordPress, Hutchinson has been quietly making progress on restoring some of Newted’s services.
All in the midst of a giant NewtonTalk reboot.
The NewtonTalk server switch is keeping Hutchinson plenty busy, in fact, and has kept the Newted project on the backburner. But, he says, e-mail and web accounts have been restored for several members. Also on the to-do list: a new support FAQ and membership information.
“The nice thing about Bluehost, is that the service is consistent and offers a ton of tools and add-ons,” Hutchinson says, “such as webmail and optional serverside spam filtering.”
Unfortunately, everything in the Newted archives, stored on a local hard drive, was lost in the crash.
“I had the majority of the main site backed up locally, but all user files were lost,” Hutchinson says. “Any missing bits are accessable using the Internet Archive, for the most part.”
Some Newted users personally backed up their sites, too, he says.
I was a member of the Newted clan before the big crash. Since the crash, any news has been good news. And step by step, the good news is coming along.
During the Newted’s rebirth, Hutchinson’s list of priorities include membership information, updating the About and Support pages, a revamped “Newtons Around the World” gallery, and a few other projects.
“I’m guessing that by the end of January, things should be back up to relatively normal speed,” he says.
Existing members of the Newted Community can contact Hutchinson (admin at newted dot org) to get their membership information set up again. Newton users and fans will be able to register in the next few weeks, once Hutchinson sets up a payment system.
Hutchinson says membership benefits will include:
- Your choice of using POP3, POP3S, IMAP, or IMAPS email
- Outbound mail relaying via SMTP or authenticated SMTP
- 250MB mailbox (size may be increased for a small one time fee)
- A webmail interface
- Optional email aliases (available for a small one time fee)
- Optional Postini spam filtering (available for a small annual fee)
- FTP access for web space or file storage
- 5.0GB server space (size may be increased for a small one time fee)
It’s worth remembering, however, that Splorp does this stuff for “recreational web tinkering,” as he puts it. This being a hobby, and with all the NewtonTalk stuff going down, it’s understandable if he takes his time – especially to get it all done right.
“There are people who still care deeply about the Newted Community site,” Hutchinson says. “You need to pay attention to things that people depend on.”
The big lesson he learned was keeping a good backup of the Newted data. Hutchinson also learned one good lesson about hard drives.
“Act quickly,” he says. “As soon as a hard drive makes a funny sound, you almost too late.”