Testing, Testing

We just made a bunch of changes to this site that should make it both more hacker resistant—there is no such thing as hacker proof—and faster. Of course the danger when tinkering “under the hood” like this is that it is pretty easy to break something.

So we would really appreciate if you, our readers, would tell us in the form of a comment to this post, if anything is not working properly.

Also, even though we know that it is difficult to evaluate accurately, we would like to know whether you think the site is both faster than it was, and fast enough so that it does not annoy you.

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Meet the Author


John was born and brought up in Bermuda and started sailing as a child, racing locally and offshore before turning to cruising. He has sailed over 100,000 miles, most of it on his McCurdy & Rhodes 56, Morgan's Cloud, including eight ocean races to Bermuda, culminating in winning his class twice in the Newport Bermuda Race. He has skippered a series of voyages in the North Atlantic, the majority of which have been to the high latitudes. John has been helping others go voyaging by sharing his experience for twenty years, first in yachting magazines and, for the last 12 years, as co-editor/publisher of AAC.

16 comments… add one
  • Jeff Harrison Jan 11, 2011, 1:32 pm


    While I did not click on every link at the top, everything I tried is working just fine. I did not notice any increase in speed.

    I feel your pain regarding being hacker resistant. I had to spend much time cleaning up a web site I’ve been working on after it got hacked.

    Best regards,

  • Bob Hinden Jan 11, 2011, 9:53 pm

    Seems to be working on my end.


  • richard Jan 12, 2011, 9:27 am

    echo jeff harrison except i don’t do websites and so don’t have that problem although i do appreciate your efforts as long as they don’t detract from your primary mission in this life…as soon as it does i will encourage you to either cut back or drop it altogether…we, your constituency, will muddle through…richard in tampa bay (cavu’s skipper)

  • Larry V Jan 12, 2011, 9:47 am

    I love your site. Speed is fine. For me, switching from a PC to Mac has made a tremendous difference. I visit your site regularly and vicariously visit all your cruising destinations. Also, your maintenance tips are first rate and I’ve picked up many pointers from them.

  • David Kent Jan 12, 2011, 10:55 am

    Running Microsoft Internet Explorer I notice faster refresh rate. The speed increase is particularly noticeable scrolling theough the photo essays.

  • Jay Jan 12, 2011, 11:09 am

    Ditto above. Seems faster to me.

  • Christopher Jan 12, 2011, 12:02 pm

    Running Firefox 3.6.13 and I do think the page links load a bit faster, hard to “know” but certainly fine. I am with the folks above; First and foremost, we are all here for the great content – KISS is a great idea for boats and websites.

  • Dick T M/V Julia Bryant Jan 12, 2011, 12:26 pm

    Also running the latest Firefox your site loads real quick. Hope the response to the Soundings piece does not overwhelm your server !
    Dick (snowed under in Greater Boston)

  • Phil Jan 12, 2011, 12:54 pm

    Much faster loads, especially noticeable with the photo essays – probably twice as fast I’d guess, using Google Chrome browser. Very much appreciate your site – fabulous content.

  • Victor Raymond Jan 12, 2011, 3:06 pm

    Hi John
    This site is a big improvement in speed, at least for me. I am reading it as usual on the iPad, and at the moment on AT&T 3G network (not so usual.) I am impressed how fast each page comes up. I really don’t understand why hackers would be interested in a boating site but that is my ignorance. Don’t they they have anything better to do? What can they hope to gain? It is beyond me.

  • David V Jan 12, 2011, 4:07 pm

    I too share the sentiments expressed above… hackers come & go… keep your eyes on the prize. Here in central Qld we are beset by media-drama queens… as if moving water is a ‘new’ experience.

  • Mike Jan 12, 2011, 4:17 pm

    Love the site! Thanks for all your work on it!

  • John Jan 13, 2011, 10:55 am

    Thanks to all for taking the time to comment. Looks like things are working well and we are getting at least some speed benefit from the changes.

  • Martin Jan 15, 2011, 10:45 pm

    I’m on a relatively slow connection, both Firefox and Opera browsers – noticed nothing broken and can not truthfully comment on a speed change. Still a great site.

    However, in order to run my PC more securely and with better privacy, I’ve clamped down on “third party cookies” – those are cookies planted on your PC that do NOT come from the originating site.
    I mention the following just in case you are not aware – entering your site delivers the expected https://www.morganscloud.com cookie, and that’s good. But, and this is not expected, it automatically plants an unsolicited 3rd party cookie from http://www.facebook.com on the user’s PC.

    • John Jan 16, 2011, 10:10 am

      Hi Martin,

      Thanks for the comment.

      All the Morgan’s Cloud cookie does is tell us if you are a repeat visitor which helps to determine what content really engages people. As you say, this is not a problem and almost every site in the world does the same thing.

      The Facebook cookie is because we give people the option to “like” the site on the top right. Hum, I wonder if we should take that off?

      Thing is that this is the fastest growing way in which readers keep track of our content. All the Facebook cookie does is show that you have already liked the site, so that the button changes to show that on return visits.

      Any thoughts from anyone?

      • Martin Jan 17, 2011, 2:38 am

        John, good you are aware of it, and by your explanation that one is quite innocent.
        Topic drift – be nice if web protocols required the role of each cookie planted to be non-secret (at least for ‘legitimate’ web sites and cookies), so the user has some basis for deciding to accept/refuse. But, back to boating …

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