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Offline Doug Pilcher  
#1 Posted : Tuesday, September 17, 2019 7:44:52 AM(UTC)
Doug Pilcher

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Dear IMAC Members,

As anyone involved in the IT industry knows, online technology, threats, and solutions are constantly changing. Sometimes for the better, but often times the tools we use and need to maintain don’t keep up with the threats. This is the situation we find ourselves in with our IMAC forums.

Our current forum software has served us well (or so many of us believe) for the past several years, but it has not kept pace with the global threats. To date, we have been very dependent on mostly volunteer efforts by a couple individuals to prevent unwanted intrusions and hacking. Many times a day spiders, hackers, robot user registrations, and a host of other threats intrude the forums. These attacks require daily backups and restorations. Recently, we lost three days’ worth of discussions. Our frontline troops in the fight are tired, and it has reached a critical point where those individuals are no longer willing or able to keep up that fight. To that end, it’s time for us to take the next step and seek a more sustainable professional solution that allows us to maintain and enhance the forum function.

We are exploring a couple of commercial forum products that will integrate with our website and be portable when we begin exploring new options for our website in the near future (for many of the same reasons). IMAC has grown into an international organization, with new opportunities internationally, and we need to grow our tools to match.

With that in mind, we want the members feedback on what we want the forums to do, as well as try to address any frustrations you may have had with the forums. This is not a promise that every idea will be implemented, or every frustration addressed. Sometimes the need for security or other conflicting requirements outweighs the need for convenience, but we at least want your input to make conscious decisions. For example, we already anticipate the new forums should make it easier to upload photos, resize pictures, and link to other social media. Subscriptions and notifications should also be easier to manage.

Thank you for your input, your understanding, and your patience as we try to make IMAC better.

The Board of Directors
Doug Pilcher
Vice President
douglas.pilcher@gmail.com
Contact - 903-647-2640
#IAmIMAC
thanks 11 users thanked Doug Pilcher for this useful post.
Tim Hughes on 9/17/2019(UTC), Randy Brunette on 9/17/2019(UTC), Matt Komar on 9/17/2019(UTC), Krzy4rc on 9/17/2019(UTC), Bill Daniel on 9/17/2019(UTC), Earle Andrews on 9/17/2019(UTC), Daren Hudson on 9/17/2019(UTC), Toby W. Silhavy on 9/17/2019(UTC), David Moro on 9/18/2019(UTC), Adi Kochav on 9/18/2019(UTC), Orthobird on 9/18/2019(UTC)
Offline Bill Daniel  
#2 Posted : Tuesday, September 17, 2019 10:14:40 AM(UTC)
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Good move, long over due. Make it as social media friendly as possible, so both old dinosaurs AND modern dinosaurs can participate. Suggestion: to get input from our younger members - important! - you might have to interview them privately, not very keyboard or forum oriented.
thanks 1 user thanked Bill Daniel for this useful post.
Toby W. Silhavy on 9/17/2019(UTC)
Offline Daren Hudson  
#3 Posted : Tuesday, September 17, 2019 12:55:54 PM(UTC)
Daren Hudson

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BOD,

Thank you for recognizing a need and facilitating feedback from the membership.

Keeping up with security (many of us did not know the background volunteer work going on- thank you to volunteers for that) is crucial. Also crucial is the ability to coordinate with social media since much of our immediate communication takes place through SM outlets.

Our ability to continue to have an accessible platform to engage in dialogue and discussion is absolutely necessary to maintain a viable “International” Miniature Aerobatic Club. I’ve seen some great advances in communications and resources occur over the past few years, most of those improvements come from better organizational communication, through SM and our forums.

Maintaining similar access and functionality with the stated potential improvements would be more than acceptable to me.

Please continue to keep us posted as we move forward.

Thanks,
Daren
Reaching out to Outreach!
“Fly good, don’t suck!”

#IAmIMAC
thanks 1 user thanked Daren Hudson for this useful post.
Toby W. Silhavy on 9/17/2019(UTC)
Offline Krzy4rc  
#4 Posted : Tuesday, September 17, 2019 5:13:30 PM(UTC)
Krzy4rc

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I would like to see a New Posts since last visit button.
Rich
Krzy4RC
SCRD
#IAmIMAC
IMAC Newsletter Editor
Team Jeti
Hybrid Pilot/Troublemaker
thanks 1 user thanked Krzy4rc for this useful post.
Toby W. Silhavy on 9/17/2019(UTC)
Offline Steve Sides  
#5 Posted : Wednesday, September 18, 2019 11:47:17 AM(UTC)
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Ok so we need / want a new forum package that seems to be 'plug and play' is what I'm interpreting to help resolve all the hacking-type activities that are occurring with the current package / platform. When I read the laundry list of difficulties being addressed by our administrators, are we saying that simply a forum change will cure these problems ?

Call me skeptical but I seriously doubt that a relatively minor package change (in the grand scheme of the overall site) is going to change much in terms of administrative workload. Am I wrong here ? Seems to me that we're still going to have the same issues with a new package - true ?

The current package and website has been running for about 5 years now. Might be time to upgrade / migrate to an entire site / platform that reduces workload. Simply a forum change - no matter how much it may be needed - seems a bit of a band-aid on a broken bone to me.
Sequence Committee, Education Committee, Judging Instructor
Offline Krzy4rc  
#6 Posted : Wednesday, September 18, 2019 11:52:19 AM(UTC)
Krzy4rc

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Steve,
I believe the ones we are looking at would be on a "new site" and platform.
I agree we all don't want a band aid that will just have to revisited in the near future.
Rich
Krzy4RC
SCRD
#IAmIMAC
IMAC Newsletter Editor
Team Jeti
Hybrid Pilot/Troublemaker
Offline Steve Sides  
#7 Posted : Wednesday, September 18, 2019 9:54:32 PM(UTC)
Steve Sides

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Originally Posted by: Krzy4rc Go to Quoted Post
Steve,
I believe the ones we are looking at would be on a "new site" and platform.
I agree we all don't want a band aid that will just have to revisited in the near future.


Thanks for clearing that up. I didn't get that from what I read.

Sequence Committee, Education Committee, Judging Instructor
Offline Chuck Edwards  
#8 Posted : Thursday, September 19, 2019 10:36:11 AM(UTC)
Chuck Edwards

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Do we have any prospective companies in mind that the BOD will put an RFP out to?
Charles Edwards
TEAM FUTABA
Professional UAS pilot.
I’m just here for the party!
Offline Chuck Edwards  
#9 Posted : Thursday, September 19, 2019 5:47:58 PM(UTC)
Chuck Edwards

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To all who read this,

I know that I come across as someone who does not care for nor wants to see IMAC return to its former glory, nothing could be further from the truth! I love IMAC and love all of the special people that I have met along the way. We all have a very specific common interest that is giant scale aerobatics. I may not agree with you, and you most certainly don’t always agree with me but that should never interfere with our common goal to keep IMAC moving forward. I sincerely hope that whatever decisions are made moving forward pertaining to the website are made with complete transparency and with the same principles that any other business would utilize. IMAC is not just a club or an organization, it is a business and should be ran as such.
Charles Edwards
TEAM FUTABA
Professional UAS pilot.
I’m just here for the party!
Offline Chuck Edwards  
#10 Posted : Saturday, September 21, 2019 5:48:04 PM(UTC)
Chuck Edwards

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Doug,

I know that it is probably a touchy subject, but could you please explain how our current website has become archaic in just 5 years. In past website conversations we the membership were told that the reason we needed the last upgrade in websites was to carry us into the next chapter of growth. Has IMAC as an organization really outgrown the website, or were we over promised and under delivered? This is not me trying to be combative, I just feel that the membership deserves to know exactly what is going on before we go throwing more good money after bad.

Respectfully,
Charles Edwards
TEAM FUTABA
Professional UAS pilot.
I’m just here for the party!
Offline Ron Graham  
#11 Posted : Monday, September 23, 2019 10:28:07 PM(UTC)
Ron  Graham

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Kudo's to our volunteers. What, and/or more importantly, why is IMAC paying a $321/month "website Maintenence fee" to Memory Bank for? IMAC paid $15,000 to get the website to it's latest version. Maybe the question of how we continue would be better answered if we knew exactly what we are currently paying for?
2017 IMAC.JPG (160kb) downloaded 20 time(s).

IMAC Website Invoice.JPG (36kb) downloaded 7 time(s).
thanks 1 user thanked Ron Graham for this useful post.
Chuck Edwards on 9/24/2019(UTC)
Offline Doug Pilcher  
#12 Posted : Tuesday, September 24, 2019 6:59:14 AM(UTC)
Doug Pilcher

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Clarification


Ron, while all of what you are posting is quite outdated and redundantly posted information and an invoice voted on from when you were on the BOD, the $321.00 for Website maintenance is incorrect and taken from 2 years ago. We currently pay (for well over a year now) $214.00 monthly for this. This includes all changes and updates we ask for from Webmaster on a very regular basis. To include this month alone in the splitting of International to 3 regions from one region. I personally need things changed at BOD's requests as to region pages and ARD swaps as well as permission changes for committees and such needed and much more, to also include extras such as live score postings as we have added for last few nats and World's 18, pretty regularly from Webmaster on not just a month to month, but in some cases several times a month and sometimes things weekly to obtain what we need for the ever changing needs of the organization both on front end of website (Users side) and back end (RD's and Executive BOD).

Just do not want members using these as current numbers and costs as you presented.
Doug Pilcher
Vice President
douglas.pilcher@gmail.com
Contact - 903-647-2640
#IAmIMAC
Offline Chuck Edwards  
#13 Posted : Tuesday, September 24, 2019 7:16:38 AM(UTC)
Chuck Edwards

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Doug,

The point the Ron and myself are making is that a significant amount of membership resources have been and continue to be funneled into the website. Unless you go digging into the back room information files you would never know that the monthly fees had been reduced. Regardless, the point remains the same as posted above.
Charles Edwards
TEAM FUTABA
Professional UAS pilot.
I’m just here for the party!
Offline Doug Pilcher  
#14 Posted : Tuesday, September 24, 2019 7:18:40 AM(UTC)
Doug Pilcher

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Was thanked: 878 time(s) in 444 post(s)
Originally Posted by: Chuck Edwards Go to Quoted Post
Doug,

I know that it is probably a touchy subject, but could you please explain how our current website has become archaic in just 5 years. In past website conversations we the membership were told that the reason we needed the last upgrade in websites was to carry us into the next chapter of growth. Has IMAC as an organization really outgrown the website, or were we over promised and under delivered? This is not me trying to be combative, I just feel that the membership deserves to know exactly what is going on before we go throwing more good money after bad.

Respectfully,


Chuck, the bulk of your question is answered in post number #1. I also remind you this platform was put together before International was a true part of the mix and planning and now with International growth and 3 region split. We (then) had no idea of the growth of needs that was coming (nor could we have predicted) thus was not planned for in the original design of the new website. As to throwing "good money after bad" the direction that the BOD is investigating quite thoroughly now is taking IMAC and it's website/forum needs to a more commercial platform(s) and weighing far more cost effective paths moving forward. Thus we are asking for members needs and wants and input. We are not debating the past. That has been done.

Respectfully Replied

Doug Pilcher
Vice President
douglas.pilcher@gmail.com
Contact - 903-647-2640
#IAmIMAC
Offline Ron Graham  
#15 Posted : Tuesday, September 24, 2019 8:47:41 AM(UTC)
Ron  Graham

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Thanks for the feedback. Considering the plans that are being explored, is it reasonable for members to anticipate that there will be a budgetary change and/or lump some fee (s) ? Do you anticipate the cost to be more or less than what we had in the prior website? Would these changes occur over the tenure of the existing BOD and/or future BOD's ? How does the BOD intend to make these choices? Would there be a recorded vote on the minutes? Bidding?
thanks 1 user thanked Ron Graham for this useful post.
Chuck Edwards on 9/24/2019(UTC)
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