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3 Posts authored by: thegreateebzies Administrator

Happy cruising the THWACKillac this glorious Tuesday! I can’t believe it’s been an entire three months since the last time we chatted about how THWACK is growing.

 

Last week we wrapped up nine months of preparation for our epic annual virtual IT event, THWACKcamp 2017. If you haven’t checked out some of the amazing sessions the SolarWinds team put together, zip over there and take a peek. I personally thought the 7 Deadly Sins of Data Management session was phenomenal, and I’m not even a DBA.

 

The event grew with vengeance this year, and helped us with momentum to make some really great updates to THWACK. If you’re active on here, you’ve probably noticed some of the changes roll out over the last couple of months, including @mentions in our live chat and a prettified (technical word) chat embed.

 

Leaps Forward this Quarter:

  • Site facelift to match the gorgeous refreshed SolarWinds brand.
  • Optimized navigation to simplify your life and make things easier to find.
  • Missions have been de-coupled from blog posts, enabling us to (soon!) do much more exciting activities like Easter egg hunts, quiz games, etc.. The sky is the limit. Well..no…the cloud is. Whatever.
  • Blog updates! While we gave a facelift to the ever-so-famous Geek Speak blog, you may have also noticed an exciting new blog called Monitoring Central. It connects with IT Pros on trends and events in the IT industry.
  • Automated store rewards. WHAT? Yes. We can now give away store items to people for participating in any activity you normally receive points for. In fact, any THWACKcamp 2017attendee from the US, UK, Germany, and Canada is in the process of receiving swag bags for attending!

 

All in all, a pretty solid quarter. As always, a tremendous shout out to Danielle, Wendy, and all of the amazing SolarWinds team members who made THWACKcamp 2017 such an epic event.

 

We’d also like to publically humiliate our latest team member, Brett Holzhauer, as our latest baby penguin.

 

Much love, THWACKnation.

 

The second quarter was the greatest of fun, my THWACKalite friends! It’s your friendly THWACK product manager, back with your next quarterly update on what’s new, what’s blue, and cooking.

 

You may have noticed DanielleH, wabbott, and lindsey.serrano have started an exciting process of adding the coolest of unique swag to the THWACK store, in the form of an Erlenmeyer flask water bottle, a thumping new Bluetooth speaker, and what we’re lovingly starting to call a ‘THWAmmock’. Because, you know, puns! Act fast, supplies are flying off our digital shelves.

 

Half-Steps Back:

  • We had a short period of time where y’all were collecting your magnificent THWACK points at a rate faster than Bunchball could track them. The pain points have been identified and resolved.

 

Leaps Forward:

  • We’re excited to announce we've completed our upgrade to the latest and greatest community platform. Things went off without a hitch and THWACK was only down for ~6 hours.
  • Is something going on with SolarWinds Lab? You may have noticed a new nav icon and a design refresh. Our beloved IT Pro talk show has received some makeup, including new page skins, a sweet new logo, and a rocking new intro segment. Haven’t watched an episode before? You should check us out on the 16th!
  • Slow chant: THWACKcamp! THWACKcamp! THWACKcamp! We’re in the throes of prepping for THWACKcamp 2017, and it’s going to be our biggest, baddest event in THWACK history. Not counting the great Network Performance Monitor Riots of 1862. Registration started August 1st.

 

It’s been a wild quarter, and there are some amazing things about to happen in the coming months. DanielleH just won’t let me tell you about them. Something about “surprise”. Thanks for being loyal friends and family on here. In the words of the great William THWACKspeare: “To THWACK, or not to THWACK. That is the question.”

 

Love,

 

thegreateebzies

 

 

Oh, and, as always, here's a picture of lindsey.serrano before her morning coffee:

 

Hello, fellow THWACKians!

 

If we haven’t met, my name is Ben " thegreateebzies" Garves, and I’m the Product Manager working with the amazing DanielleH, wabbott, and lindsey.serrano to take THWACK to the next level.

 

I want to take the time each quarter to share with you some of the leaps forward (and half-steps backward) we’re taking to grow THWACK into one of the greatest online communities on the lightweb. Let’s face it. We can’t compete with some of the things on the darkweb.

 

Half-Steps Back:

  • You may have noticed our leaderboards have been all over the place. We first started experiencing leaderboard discrepancies in November of 2016 and eventually pushed out partner vendor to scrap their entire infrastructure and rebuild our leaderboards from scratch. I can happily report leaderboards are now perfectly synced. Just remember, points showing in your lifetime point balance may take up to 30 minutes to update on your leaderboard.
  • We had a super fun unplanned system outage on April 26th. Let’s just say there was a drought at the server farm in Phoenix.

 

Leaps Forward:

  • “Remove from cart” added to the THWACK store. Previously, items would need to be manually removed. Now, you have the ability to cancel an item before completing your purchase.
  • Free Tools and Trials redesign. We went wild and did a responsive redesign of a slightly outdated Free Tools and Trials page. If you haven’t seen it, check it out here.
  • SWUG redesign. Hello modernization! We’ve also redesigned our SolarWinds User Group pages to provide you with much more information on everything from joining, hosting, and requesting a SWUG near you, to sharing your experience. You can take a quick peek here.
  • We’ve made some tweaks to our chat for SolarWinds Lab and THWACKcamp 2017 that provides for a more sound and stable environment.

 

One more quick note. We will be discontinuing point awards for document downloads. It’s been widely debated here, but preventing users from gaming these downloads will help us make sure we’re giving the best possible experience to the users who work so hard for their points. Whelp, that’s it for this quarter! See everyone in three months for another update!

 

(P.S. As always, here’s an adorable picture. Of a wabbott.)

 

Wabbott.jpg

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