I am currently in the process of moving the Community Color web sites to a new host. When I started a community directory, my idea was simply to pound out a quick and dirty prototype in PHP. If the program tapped into a good market, I would have redesigned the program in C++ or Java and moved to a dedicated server. So, moving the site to a new discount webhost is an admission that the idea was a failure.
I should note, I started this set of programs up in Missoula. People in Missoula are so supportive of their community. I also really liked the University of Montana. It appears to be a good school with level headed people. The experiment I started with Missoula.WS was a success. I moved back to Salt Lake to watch the Olympics, and the fact someone else I know wanted to do a Missoula. The general reaction to the Salt Lake directory is simply: "You aren't Mormon. LEAVE!"
Utah has a strong counter culture. I am just not that good of a counter-culture type person. I actually see all of the groups in Utah as part of the Utah culture.
My little idealistic world view is that everyone who lives in an area is part of that community. We should develop the good parts of the community and find ways to overcome the bad things. No group should be dominating everything. When one group starts dominating, a community devolves into action/reaction mode, and the worst of people surfaces.
The goal of Community Color is to include everyone. In a community like Missoula where most people simply love being in Missoula, the idea of a community directory flies. In a fractured community, like Salt Lake, the idea falls flat. Of course, a community that is fractured by ideology is in greater need of things that encourage communication between the factions.
When you analyze the link structure of blogs and web sites in Utah, you will generally find that people only link to their group.
Just today, Natalie R. Collins put up a post about how she is excluded from Mormon link lists. Her site, of course, is part of a nexus of ex-Mormon and anti-polygamy sites. If you put up an intentionally pro-Mormon or an intentionally anti-Mormon site, you will get a very large number of links. Bemoaning the fact that you don't get all links is ludicrous.
The community color directories have several intentional biases. There is a bias toward small independent organizations that are within defined cultural centers of the state.
A business in Salt Lake City would get a higher slot than one in WVC. I allow that bias because I believe that the established cultural centers are important, and that sprawl is one of the major problems facing the Mountain West. The primary reason that I have not moved to Moab is that I don't want to be part of the sprawl that is consuming that little piece of paradise.
The small town is something very near and dear to the Western heart. The problem is that we can't all live in such places. When we try to, the small town we love sprawls.
I tried to figure out how to move to Grand Junction. My sights are currently set on moving the Denver. Although I've lived in Utah most of my life, enough people in my lineage were born in Denver to claim that I am a third generation Coloradan.
After moving from Missoula, I never received any feedback on what people want in a community site. This moving to a new discount host is an admission that the project failed. Most ideas fail. That's the way science and the free market work.
I am not really upset at failure. It is the fact that I haven't received the feedback on a better direction to follow that's got me feeling gloomy.
Anyway, one of the reasons I've been pounding out mindfarting "anti-progressive" posts is that I've been trying to avoid the fact that I need to get this domain moving project completed before the end of March. I started the project in December. So, I will write about PHP programming for the next several blog posts.