Archive for January, 2010

Mayor of Hopville back in the office.

I recently got hired again after six months of (mostly voluntary) unemployment.  While I normally don’t muddy up the Hopville blog with details of my personal life, this is relevant purely because of how shockingly little I accomplished during all that time off.  I mean sure,  I traveled a lot. I worked on the house. I interviewed and interviewed and interviewed some more.  Did some volunteer work. And so on.  But I took a long overdue break from the tech industry, and from software development in general, for the entire time.

Luckily for Hopville, now that I am about to start work again, I’m learning lots of knew stuff and I’m completely energized about getting back into web development.  On a recent trip back east, I had some productive time on the plane – including my first-ever launch of website features from a chair in the sky (since my Delta flights were equipped with WiFi).  Here’s what’s new:

  • Recipe pages now have dedicated sections where the brewer can add tasting notes and taste ratings.
  • Brewers pitching multiple yeasts in a single batch can now list unlimited yeast strains and bacteria cultures on a recipe page.  Previously only one yeast was allowed, so brewers pitching multiple cultures had to list the supplemental strains in the recipe comments.  Now the extra cultures become a part of the main recipe.
  • Measured OG and FG can be recorded on recipe pages – when present, the display of the measured values takes priority over the values estimates by Beer Calculus.
  • Brewers can easily export their entire Hopville recipe catalog as BeerXML from their recipe page.  This is a nice shortcut for folks who want to backup or export their entire list of recipes at once, rather than one at a time from each recipe page.
  • New and slightly more enticing homepage…though it’s still a work in progress, design-wise.  Much improved version launching in a few weeks.
  • Featured recipes! Recipes are now given an “interestingness” score which allows Hopville to feature lists of the juiciest recipes on the site.  Now that there are over 10,000 recipes on Hopville, this kind of highlighting will become an important signal-vs-noise aid, making it convenient to find the best recipes quickly.

Over the next month I’ll be continuing to do some major upgrades in preparation for a larger rollout of changes I’m planning to launch on February 25th.  It’s nice to be having fun with code again…and Hopville stands to reap the benefits.

Current recipe count: 11,134

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