When is a good time to update your backend web software?

February 1, 2011

Here’s a hint — not when catastrophic weather events are occurring in multiple parts of the word. In this case, when the biggest cyclone in Australia’s history is within hours of hitting Queensland!

The weather site I use to check the local weather is Weatherzone (http://www.weatherzone.com.au). It’s pretty good, giving me satellite and radar images, as well as past details, present conditions, and future predictions — all on the one page.

So, I check the news reports during my lunch hour and find out that the largest cyclone predicted to hit Australia is bearing down on northern Queensland. The news site has an image from the US National Oceanic and Atomspheric Administration (NOAA), followed by warnings to Queenslanders living in that part of the world to ‘get out now’:

Image from the NOAA website, 3 pm (Australian WST) 1 February 2011

Image from http://www.news.com.au, 3pm (Australian WST) 1 February 2011

And what does Weatherzone have when I refresh the page for my local weather? This:

From the wording of the message, this appears to be a scheduled outage, but with such a life-threatening event in progress, surely they could have held off for a few days. And if Weatherzone is a US-based site, then they should have still held off as much of the US is being blanketed by exceptionally heavy snow, blizzards and the like.

It’s all about the timing. And Weatherzone’s timing on this upgrade is bad.

One comment

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Rhonda Bracey, Technical Comms. Technical Comms said: latest cybertext: When is a good time to update your backend web software? http://bit.ly/eZoV4G […]

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