With last week’s update to the site, I rolled out several different refinements. One of them is the addition of a search engine for the Features Message Board Archive.
When the FMB was active, it had a search engine built into it, but it was of dubious quality. Members would often search for posts that they knew existed, but they could not find them. This was because of limitations in the software system that powered the message board.
When I originally put the FMB Archive on the Internet, I had planned to manually create an index of all of the subjects covered. However, after three years, I had only indexed about 10% of the posts. Realizing that I would never have the time or energy to finish such a huge task, I decided to let technology solve the problem for me.
Therefore, I have added a search engine to the site. This will allow you to finally search through all of those old posts with ease. The engine isn’t perfect, but it’s much better than any option than we’ve had available in the past. So enjoy!
When I originally launched the “FMB Archive” web site back in April, 2009, I saw it as a simple way to put a copy of the old Features Message Board back onto the Internet so people could enjoy it. The focus of the site was not The Features but the message board they had hosted on their site.
However, through the process of running this site, my love for the band has been rekindled. I’ve rediscovered their music and have been motivated to help spread the word about their awesomeness. As a result, the focus of this web site has changed over time. However, the structure of the site did not promote this idea very well.
To address this problem, I’m rebranding the web site. No longer will it be “fmb-archive.net”. It is now known as “featuresfans.com”, and it will be the the #1 site for fans of The Features.
So welcome to the new site! There are several new enhancements that I’ll be sharing with you in the coming days.
Ten out of ten people voted to create a new Features Message Board. Additionally, there are many people (more than I would’ve imagined) who keep checking the comments on the blog, which suggests that some of the old members miss each other. So I’ve created a new forum for us…
Let’s see how it goes!
In Part Iof the “Blast from the Past” series, we looked at some screens from the original version of the message board. Fortunately, the members did not have to suffer with the the old Ikonboard software for very long. In July, 2002, Michael upgraded the system to run software from Invision Board. This gave us lots of new features, like avatars and member titles. It also looked much better and ran much more reliably. (Unfortunately, it didn’t have spam control… but that’s a different issue.)
So let’s wander once again down memory lane and look at some pictures of how the message board looked at the end of its life. Read more…
richarddawson has suggested that we start a new discussion forum on this site. We could use it to catch up with each other, talk about The Features, and gab about anything else that pops into our heads.
I’m willing to add such a forum to this site, but I don’t want to do it unless people will actually post on it. I also don’t want to tarnish the memory of the old message board. So we’ll put it to a vote… Read more…
As you’ve discovered, this archive lets you read the posts from the old Features Message Board, but they’re presented in a whole new layout. Can you remember what the original message board looked like?
In part one of this series, we’ll go all the way back to that magical spring of 2002. The message board was still young then. It hadn’t had its first crash yet and was still running the old Ikonboard software. Below are some screenshots that will show you how the FMB once looked. Read more…
The traffic on this site is going through the roof! But, unfortunately, I don’t if it’s from curious newcomers or some of the old gang who actually posted on the site. I’d like to know how many of the former FMB addicts members have found their way here. So please do me a favor and sign in with a comment below. I’d love to hear from each of you!
So here’s how I’d planned for things to go down. A few days from now, I was going to send out e-mail messages to about 15 members I’d managed to track down and tell them about this site. In my wildest dreams, I thought that maybe five or six of those people would’ve actually been interested enough to take a look at the site. I also hoped that a couple of those people would tell some of their old message board friends about the site.
Fortunately, things don’t always go according to plan.
Last night, news about the site leaked out on Facebook, and word travelled fast. We’ve already had more people visit the site than I would’ve ever imagined… people I could’ve never tracked down and people that I thought wouldn’t cared about a 7-year-old message board. I’m overwhelmed by the response! And I’m glad to see that I’m not the only one who’s missed the FMB!
So… to all of you… Welcome! And if you keep in contact with any members of the old gang, please let them know about this site.
UPDATE #1: This site has been Creamed and Twittered! I’m speechless…
UPDATE #2: Apparently OAR fans like us, too!
All of the work I did yesterday trying to track down old message board members must’ve gone to my head. I haven’t had a message board dream in many years, but last night, I had not one but two! I’ll tell you about the second, more relevant one.
In my dream, I went to France with jamiecarroll, featuresgirl, and richarddawson because The Features were playing a show there. However, we soon discovered that France is actually a hard-line Communist state (similar to the depiction of East Germany in Top Secret… but not as funny).
The four of us and Roger Dabbs were captured and sent to a work camp where they kept all of their American prisoners. We banded together and helped Roger escape so he could go play his gig. The next day, when we arrived at the factory where we were forced to work, all of the prisoners were lined up in the yard as the guard called the roll. He said, “Dabbs? Where is Dabbs? Has anyone seen Dabbs?”
Another guard said, “His band is playing a big show in town. Maybe he went there.”
“That band must be pretty good if he risked death to go play for them,” replied the first guard.
All of the prisoners started telling the guards about The Features and what a great band they are. jamiecarroll said, “They’re so good that we all risked being put into this prison camp just so we could see them play in your stupid country.”
Then I woke up.
Isn’t having message board dreams one of the signs of addiction? Maybe I need to take a break from this project.
I spent some time this afternoon trying to track down e-mail addresses for some of the old gang. (I’m hoping to send out announcements about this site within the next couple of weeks.) Anyway, as I’m traipsing through the seedy underbelly of the Nashville music scene’s on-line haunts, I came across a link to this amazingly appropriate web site:
Where are they, indeed? (Hint: SXSW in Austin) Now back to my question: Where are their fans?