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Blow-Molded.com


Kevin Provost

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Greetings all,

This is an ongoing thread to keep the awareness of Blow-Molded fresh and visible to newcomers and regular visitors alike.

I want to invite and remind everyone to please check our Blog. We have added many new figures to our website. Please if you have an RSS reader, subscribe. This will notify you instantly when our website is updated and direct you to which sections contain updates. SImply click on our RSS button to become a subscriber.

We have added a FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) page to accurately answer questions that arise often. This will be expanded more over time.

If you are looking for the link to our website, simply click the banner in my signature and be sure to add it to your favorites.

Last but not least I want to thank the following people for their valued contributions-

Clint Babcock

Shannon DiMartino

Frank Finan

Jen Grissett

Agnes Whipple

I also want to warmly welcome Tom Gacesa to the Blow-Molded team.

Thank you everyone, for your continued support.

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There should be no problems with the speed, I am on a standard high speed connection myself and everything loads very quickly. I also made sure to test the loading time before our website went public.

You may want to try a different browser, our recommendations are Safari or Firefox, both of which are available, free.

One browser is completely incompatible, AOL. It will load the pages, but will incorrectly display the text. So far no problems have been reported with all recent releases of Internet Explorer in regards to our site, but it has been known to have incompatibility issues with many websites.

If you are dial-up, the website will load slowly and you will have to be patient. Our website is designed with a DSL or other high speed connection in mind.

If the website is slow or not showing on a high speed connection, the problem is on your end, unfortunately. I just checked the website within my browser, Safari and everything is working fine. One of the browsers mentioned above will most likely remedy the issue. Safari is currently the fastest browser available.

All of my personal friends who have tested the website using Internet Explorer have had no speed issues at all thus far.

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Okay, I feel like an idiot - I clicked on the link in your signature and I get to the website just fine. I was typing www.blow-molded.com which does not exist - doh!!! :rolleyes:

Anyway, I am using Firefox on a 6MB DSL connection and the site loads nicely when browsing the archives. Yes, this is a wonderful site and I know that it was discussed here earlier, but I just now had a chance to look around.

Kudoes to all involved!

Kathi

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Kathi,

Don't worry about it, I am glad you were able to work it out. Yes, unfortunately we do not have the money at the moment to host it on a dedicated server. Eventually that address will be active.

Glad to hear you are enjoying the site.

I am sorry to hear several people are having trouble with the pages loading, the only thing I can recommend is try one of the browsers I listed. As you can see Firefox works fine for Kathi. I did mention that IE is known to have problems in some cases.

Gary, thanks for the offer, I will be in touch.

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Here's some information that I received today from my nephew comparing the loading speeds of Firefox, Safari and IE. He ran some tests on them using the Empire Santa Claus section on the website. I think that is one of the largest pages on the site.

I did in fact install Firefox 3.0.5 and what a difference it was. The page loaded in less than 5 seconds. I then installed Apple's Safari and it also loaded faster, but still took about 10 seconds to load. I still use Internet Explorer 6 due to the fact that I never liked Internet Explorer 7 and the way the multi tabs and security work. I then tried Cindy's computer and tried loading the page in Internet Explorer 7 and the page still loaded painfully slow. Bottom line here. Firefox 3.0.5 handled the Java Script way better than Internet Explorer. Safari was also much faster, but 2nd compared to Firefox.

In a previous email he told me that IE took 30 seconds to load with his 10 megabyte connection. Firefox was six times faster then IE and Safari was three times faster.

Due to being on dial up (no dsl or cable available here in the county) I could not do the comparison myself. I do use Firefox though because even being on dial up, Firefox is faster then IE for me on the website and on eBay. It is a waste of time for me to try making a bid on eBay with less then 45 seconds to go in the auction using IE, with Firefox I still have a good chance of getting a bid in with less then 20 seconds to go. I know that is extremely slow compared to having dsl or cable, but it is way faster then using IE.

Mel

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I,ve been on the site a few times now on 2 different computers (one brand new with Vista) using Explorer and have a high speed connection. I've had the same problems - extremely slow navigation between each page. There is a major problem.

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Yes, we know there is a problem and we think we know what it is and it will take some work to resolve it. My reason for making the previous post was only to share the information that some of us do have faster results using Firefox. If you reread messages 8 and 15 in this thread, there are two others here that use Firefox and said that they do not have a problem with the website.

Mel

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We appreciate everyone's concern over the speed of Blow-Molded and the issue is being addressed the best to our abilities. Please be patient for now, a little extra time for now for each page to load we feel is worth it for what we have provided everyone.

Blow-Molded is first and foremost an image driven site which will make pages a bit slower than an average webpage. Each section was drastically overhauled during development to maximize loading time. Each image was cropped and compressed at a small file size, an average of 88 KB. I have found I can reduce this down to 16-25 KB depending on the image. That is an average reduction of 60-80 KB. We have near to 500 images to compress and change out, so this will take some time to address. The beige background is being replaced by color fill as well, before it was a 44 KB image.

Blow-Molded is hosted on Apple's servers for the time being, as you may have noticed. This inevitably will cause some slowing of the web pages as it is a 3rd party website. There is nothing that can be done about this speed reduction. For now, I do not have the money to purchase a server to host this at home, or to pay a hosting service, which would increase the load times considerably.

I am not able to be on the computer continuously, the website already takes a considerable amount of time to maintain and update. There is much to cross reference and keep track of as well.

I hope everyone will understand and that the new loading times will be agreeable with all. We are doing the best we can, until there is a budget for more improvements this is all we can do to improve the speed.

We will notify everyone once the site has been overhauled completely and Blow-Molded will remain online during this process.

Thank you for your patience.

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Along those same lines Kevin, will the site get more deeply into showing color variations, lighting differences, original packaging pics, etc.? I'd also love to see more info on production years. There are so many people with ads that show when molds were first produced and by whom, but very little dating on the site. I'm not being critical, lol, you've undertaken a huge task, and I appreciate it, I just can't get enough of it all. Thanks again, Ken

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This will be limited to while I am online, but I want to show everyone that the speed issue is greatly related to Apple's servers and not entirely us. You will find this extremely fast. I have temporarily hosted the website on my computer. Once I am able to have a home server, this will be the speed which will be experienced. The images will still be compressed as mentioned however to further increase speed.

I am editing this and removing the links, so not to confuse anyone about the site address since I'll be offline for now.

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Ken,

Everything that is currently available to us that you mentioned in your post will be added to the website, yes. When more becomes available, it will be added. If you see a figure with incomplete info, it's because the info is unknown at this time.

If you look to the information boxes, you will see the majority of light-ups have the "introduced" year and the "discontinued" year. This is the time the figure was manufactured. We do not post each year the figure was made because that isn't necessary with having the beginning and end years. If you see for example a figure introduced in 1994 and discontinued in 2006, that means it went into production in 1994 and the last year it was produced was 2006, thus it being manufactured for 12 years. In the upper part of each info box we list the steel mold year, this is the year commonly stamped onto a figure which tells when the steel mold was created, not the figure itself.

You will also find many figures with the different paint schemes already on the site. There are several in the TPI sections currently and others in the GF and Empire sections to name a few.

If you really browse, you will see what you are mentioning. There will be more of everything added as it all becomes available. We don't have any limitations on ideas that people have or what will be added, it's really quite a freeform project.

Skarah,

Yes, that would be lovely if you would like to submit some images for the website. I'll send you a PM with my e-mail.

I am sure that the amount of visitors is a factor, yes. Although the website shouldn't show much lag from that.

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