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Thread: The future of Cyburbia (was: The future of teh internets)

  1. #1
    Cyburbian statler's avatar
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    The future of Cyburbia (was: The future of teh internets)

    I just sitting here wondering what would happen to Cyburbia if Dan decided he didn't want to play anymore or god-forbid, something were to happen to him. Sites like Google and Yahoo are fine because there are companies behind them, but a lot of the websites I visit are 'locally owned and operated' as it were. What happens to Fark if Drew Curtis calls its quits? What about sites like Skyscraperpage and Urban Photo? The blogs like Daily Kos and Drudge I'm not too concerned about because most likely web users will quit on them before they quit the web. But places like this have staying power, they will serve a purpose long past their creators lifespans. Here's hoping there are plans in place!
    "So, if a city has a personality, maybe it also has a soul. Maybe it dreams." -Gaiman
    ArchBoston

  2. #2
    Corn Burning Fool giff57's avatar
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    Dan has a disaster plan in place so rest easy Cyburbians.
    “As soon as public service ceases to be the chief business of the citizens, and they would rather serve with their money than with their persons, the State is not far from its fall”
    Jean-Jacques Rousseau

  3. #3
    Forums Administrator & Gallery Moderator NHPlanner's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by giff57
    Dan has a disaster plan in place so rest easy Cyburbians.
    giff beat me to responding.
    "Growth is inevitable and desirable, but destruction of community character is not. The question is not whether your part of the world is going to change. The question is how." -- Edward T. McMahon, The Conservation Fund

  4. #4
    Cyburbian statler's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by giff57
    Dan has a disaster plan in place so rest easy Cyburbians.
    That's good to know! Do you know if he has any long term plans or are they one in the same?
    "So, if a city has a personality, maybe it also has a soul. Maybe it dreams." -Gaiman
    ArchBoston

  5. #5
    Cyburbian boiker's avatar
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    Perhaps we should consult the zoning amulet?
    Dude, I'm cheesing so hard right now.

  6. #6
    Cyburbian michaelskis's avatar
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    I hear that Andrés Duany and his partner, Elizabeth Plater-Zyberk are next in line for the control of Cyburbia.

    Of course it would be changed to New-urbania.
    If you're not growing, you're dying. - Lou Holtz

  7. #7
    Corn Burning Fool giff57's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by statler
    That's good to know! Do you know if he has any long term plans or are they one in the same?
    Oh, You know he has a 300 page comprehensive 25 year plan on the shelf. Would you expect anything less?
    “As soon as public service ceases to be the chief business of the citizens, and they would rather serve with their money than with their persons, the State is not far from its fall”
    Jean-Jacques Rousseau

  8. #8
    Cyburbian Emeritus Bear Up North's avatar
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    This Bear has reviewed the disaster plan. Good to know that me lost hopkin green frog is in line for the grand poobaa's royal chair.

    Bear
    Occupy Cyburbia!

  9. #9
    Cyburbian Zoning Goddess's avatar
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    It makes me wonder if we are all still going to be posting on Cyburbia when we are really OLD? Boy, that could creep out some younger planners...

  10. #10
    Cyburbian Emeritus Bear Up North's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Zoning Goddess
    It makes me wonder if we are all still going to be posting on Cyburbia when we are really OLD? Boy, that could creep out some younger planners...
    Exactly what are you saying?

    Almost 57-Year Old Bear Asking

    Occupy Cyburbia!

  11. #11
    Cyburbian statler's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Zoning Goddess
    It makes me wonder if we are all still going to be posting on Cyburbia when we are really OLD? Boy, that could creep out some younger planners...
    You young whippersnappers have no idea how good you have it! Back in my day we had to type in our comments! Using a keyboard no less! AND WE LIKED IT!
    "So, if a city has a personality, maybe it also has a soul. Maybe it dreams." -Gaiman
    ArchBoston

  12. #12
    moderator in moderation Suburb Repairman's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Zoning Goddess
    It makes me wonder if we are all still going to be posting on Cyburbia when we are really OLD? Boy, that could creep out some younger planners...
    In the year 2040:
    Suburb Repairman joins the Clubbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbe...

    "Oh, that is all well and good, but, voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country."

    - Herman Göring at the Nuremburg trials (thoughts on democracy)

  13. #13
    Cyburbian
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    Hmmm... Should Dan make his living will public just so us can see who gets Cyburbia? Although The life expectancy of Americans is quite high so there should be Cyburbia for a long time.

  14. #14
    Cyburbia Administrator Dan's avatar
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    Yes, there is a disaster plan. A trusted party in the planning community, not connected with Cyburbia, has all the information that is needed for someone to maintain and even move Cyburbia should something happen to me. The mods have the contact information for that party. I'm thinking about adding another person to the list, just to be absolutely sure.

    Backups: full backups once a week, message board backups every couple of days. Backups are maintained on the home PC, and I keep an offsite copy at work. The hosting company also keeps backups.

    Advancing technology: vBulletin probably won't be around forever. At one time, UBB was the dominant message board package. When vBulletin came out, UBB-based forums (and those based on other message boards) could be converted to the vBulletin database format. If a vBulletin-killer comes along, it will probably have provisions for importing vBulletin databases.

    As far as the long-term prospects of this site, if I'm healthy I plan to do so as long as possible, hopefully into retirement. There were times when I wanted to give up, but I think it's reached a state of critical mass now, and its future is secure. If I do give something up, it might be the Resource Directory. I'm considering a collectively maintained planning-related wiki to replace it.

  15. #15
    maudit anglais
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    In addition to the above, Dan's life is insured for a surprisingly large amount

  16. #16
    Cyburbia Administrator Dan's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by statler
    What happens to Fark if Drew Curtis calls its quits? What about sites like Skyscraperpage and Urban Photo?
    Message board mergers are rare, but they do happen from time to time.

    THIS IS STRICTLY HYPOTHETICAL. Let's say Chris DeWolf decides to call it quits on Urban Photo. (I doubt it, but let's use it as an example.) I don't know if he has plans for the site or not, but a possibility would be to integrate old messages from café l'urbanité into the Cyburbia Forums. The level of discussion there is, IMHO, pretty good. There is more of a focus on urbanism and the "big picture" than the admiration of large buildings and impressive infrastructure. Most café l'urbanité users aren't planners, but I think it would probably be a good fit. Odds are, though, someone else would want to take over the site.

    The skyscraper pages are a different story, but considering all the smaller skyscraper enthusiast sites that have been popping up, there's probably no shortage of people who would want to take those sites over.

    Now, do the owners of those sites have emergency plans? I don't know. I would hope so, because those sites, like Fark and Something Awful, are like a second home to many people. To simply have those sites go "poof!" would be a shame, especially when one considers what would be lost - collectively, hundreds of thousands of hours went into the posts and photos that appear there.

    There are tens of small planning-related mailing lists. Some of the have disappeared through the years, the largest being URBANET (planning students). It would have been a fantastic opportunity to archive the messages from the list when it went offline, maybe incorporating them into the student subforum, but apparently they're lost to time.

  17. #17
    Cyburbian statler's avatar
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    I wonder if any of those sites will get 'bought out' by a for-profit entity. I can't imagine any of the current admins selling out like that, but a brand like Fark with so many loyal 'customers' must look quite appealing to more than a few suitors. And sites like Urban Photo have a built-in demographic, (typically young, urban dwelling males) who must be attractive to marketers. Plus sites like IMdB and CDdB were once 'community-based' sites, so it has happened before. A scary thought, but times change, and tend do so more quickly on the internet.
    "So, if a city has a personality, maybe it also has a soul. Maybe it dreams." -Gaiman
    ArchBoston

  18. #18
    Cyburbia Administrator Dan's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by statler
    I wonder if any of those sites will get 'bought out' by a for-profit entity. I can't imagine any of the current admins selling out like that, but a brand like Fark with so many loyal 'customers' must look quite appealing to more than a few suitors.
    I don't know about Fark, but Something Awful provides a living to Lowtax. It makes a small profit, but more like the tens of thousands rather than the millions. Much of it comes from forum membership fees ($5 to register), and fees for enhanced features like searching, private messages and avatars.

    The big skyscraper pages have a global userbase, and there are large foreign language subforums. The sites are big, but how many users are in one country? The scattered userbase might be seen as a problem by many marketers; why spend money on an ad for a product that isn't going to be available where 80% of the users live?

  19. #19
    I'd like to assure the future of my favorite little corner of the cyber-world. Do we need to pass the hat now, Dan?
    Labor is prior to, and independent of, capital. Capital is only the fruit of labor, and could never have existed if labor had not first existed. Labor is the superior of capital, and deserves much the higher consideration.
    Abraham Lincoln

  20. #20
    Cyburbian Richmond Jake's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Tranplanner
    In addition to the above, Dan's life is insured for a surprisingly large amount
    More importantly, who are the beneficiaries.
    Annoyingly insensitive

  21. #21
    Cyburbia Administrator Dan's avatar
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    Financially things are fine. (I'm still looking for a second job, but that's so I can build the savings back up to buy a second house.) The big expense now is time more than money. I'll wait a while until I pass the hat again; probably after Cyburbia is moved to a more expensive virtual server.

    Finding a source for grants would be nice, though, especially if I go through with the Wiki project.

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