Is it fast enough?

Post by blogger | August 2, 2011      

Big push the last few days to speed up your load times for Wildsnow a bit. Getting ready for winter and all. Anyone got any feedback for me? I did two things. The whole website should load a few seconds faster, and even when the whole thing doesn’t load right away you should still be able to start reading and checking out the comments before every last little thing is loaded. Feedback appreciated.



18 Responses to “Is it fast enough?”

  1. Dan August 2nd, 2011 2:39 pm

    Wildsnow does seem to load faster now that you mention it…power of suggestion?…or tech. wizardry?

  2. Lou August 2nd, 2011 2:53 pm

    I probably speeded it up by only 3 seconds or so, but I tried to rearange some things so that the site will do some parallel and progressive loading that’ll make it useful sooner. The two things combined should make a noticeable difference for those of you with medium/high speed connections such as DSL or cable.

    FYI for everyone, I’ve done no tweaking on the mobile version you might be seeing on your smartphone. It’s already fairly optimized.

  3. kjlowe August 2nd, 2011 3:58 pm

    Can you make the full feed available on RSS? Maybe I’m not looking hard enough?

  4. Brian August 2nd, 2011 4:07 pm

    Yep. Seems faster.

  5. Lou August 2nd, 2011 4:09 pm

    Kjlowe, sorry no. If I do that the feed gets stolen and published all over the place. Bad enough as it is, as hundreds of sites use feed summaries simply to generate fake content they hope will rank in the search engines so they’ll make some money from click banners and such. Really bogus situation and very little is being done about it (though Google has improved and doesn’t index those sites as easily as it used to. Frustrating for those of us who actually create content. And when one of those sites ranks higher on a search results page than the blog where the content was stolen from? Wow, that really really hurts.

  6. Sam August 3rd, 2011 12:33 pm

    I know on iPhones I have had trouble seeing photos in the past. Often they are cut off on the right, but you can’t scroll over.

    Kinda unrelated, but since you mentioned the mobile version…

    Thanks for the hard work!

  7. Dan Thuente August 3rd, 2011 1:29 pm

    Certainly faster on my desktop and my iphone. Your customer service is amazing!!
    Thanks for your hard work.

  8. AndyC August 3rd, 2011 6:32 pm

    Loads lots faster for me–I’m on a slow DSL

  9. Lou August 3rd, 2011 10:51 pm

    Hey you guys, I just drove most of the day over to Salt Lake City for summer Outdoor Retailer trade show. More on that later, but for now thanks for the speed feedback and am glad you got some results! I kind of enjoy the site tweaking, so long as it doesn’t get excessive… Lou

  10. Scott Fennell August 5th, 2011 11:22 am

    Not sure how into code you are/want to be, but you could shave the load time even more with modern CSS techniques. One small example among many: Just use italic text and a text-shadow instead of an image for “Wild Snow”.

  11. Lou August 5th, 2011 2:25 pm

    Thanks Scott, I’ll look into that. Can also use sprites or image maps for the ads, but those things get in the way of an updater system I have in place. But I’ll be doing a few things like that. Good idea on the blog title, really no reason it has to be an image, come to think of it. Like, I’m trying to impress the world with my text design skills? No.

  12. Scott Fennell August 7th, 2011 1:17 pm

    Yeah, using the CSS Sprites technique for loading all your ad images with one request would be the next thing on my list. I hear you about having to conform to an updating system though. Cost/benefit.

    There are some other unnecessary images too, though. For example, the background box-shadow around “Human Friendly Sitemap … Copyright … etc”. That effect should also just be code instruction instead of an image. One image is pretty minor, but if that’s a recurring technique throughout the design, then it should be targeted.

    And then it looks like you’re loading two distinct streams of data from facebook. The face thing, and then the like thing. They each show a slightly different number of likes. Probably just a lag in when they update the like count or something. Whatever the case, the facebook plugins are notoriously slow and you should not have two of them.

    Finally, those automated “share this” plugins are very heavy as well. I have noticed a huge performance hit from these. Again, it’s a cost/benefit equation. Would you be well served by just showing 3-4 of the most prominent, hand-coded into your template? Perhaps.

    Anyways, for the amount of content and traffic you have, I think your site performs very well as-is. Just nit-picking, since you asked!

  13. Lou August 7th, 2011 1:26 pm

    Hi Scott, thanks! Let’s take this to email. ‘best, Lou

  14. Lou August 11th, 2011 8:43 am

    A few more tweaks over the past couple days that trimmed a few seconds from load time. Can always do more given time, but I think the site is ready for winter.

  15. Lou August 12th, 2011 6:59 pm

    Hey you guys, the smily faces you can select from for the comments are yet another drag on the website. They seem to not be as stylish as they used to be. Anyone miss them if send them on their merry way?

  16. Jonthan L August 12th, 2011 7:33 pm

    πŸ˜€ Won’t miss ’em

  17. Lou August 12th, 2011 7:38 pm

    If I do get rid of them, you can still put them in with a shortcode… Perhaps I’ll just give a list of codes folks can quickly cut/paste if they really want that face in there. For example, I just coded this one in by keyboard : then lol then another : πŸ˜†

  18. Lou August 12th, 2011 8:28 pm

    The graphic presentation of emoticons is history. Way too much site latency overhead for how little they got used. If you need one, see the info box below the comment entry screen. You can just copy/past a bit of text or type one in from memory. The only one I remember is πŸ˜† but that’s plenty.

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