Can you see the image on the right? That’s our new logo. By the time you read this, this logo is already on the live version of our system – as well as our homepage, newsletter, whiteboard in our office and even our t-shirts and underpants.
From now on, StormDriver becomes Ping.it, and officially goes into a beta stage.
Sure, StormDriver was the best name ever. It made us think of rolling thunder, screeching guitar solos and sharks with lasers on their heads. It also had a meaning, although it was probably not too obvious to anyone outside of the development team.
We will all remember you fondly, StormDriver. Alas, it is time to let you go.
Mostly because that’s what was supposed to happen all along. You see, StormDriver was the first codename, when we started our work on the system many moons ago. It was never supposed to stick as long as it did. But it did stick, all the way through the alpha version, probably because of the cool factor I just mentioned.
In the meantime, the system went through a long and winding development process, and – frankly – outgrew its name. The StormDriver tag was attached to several different prototypes, including – but not limited to – the one you’ve tested in our recent alpha tests. Functionalities came and went, our targets shifted, but the name was still there. We did a press preview and an alpha launch, and it went OK. But in the end, it was all quite different from the system we’re going to launch now.
Today, after long development, we’re finally there, and we asked ourselves a simple question: why are we still using our codename? Couldn’t we find something better, something that describes the system? Something shorter and with more traction?
After careful consideration, many riotous brainstorms and speaking to some knowledgeable experts, we decided to go with Ping.it. The ping button is now the heart of our system, and the system’s philosophy focuses on sending (and receiving) pings. We really wanted to emphasize this with the name. Yes, Ping.it doesn’t have the same thundery connotations as StormDriver. But it does something much more important – it instantly says new users what we are all about, as you can see for yourself in our launch video below:
We contacted some talented designers, decided on a final logo, and in the process – we also gave our system a final layout overhaul! New looks are sleek, cleaner, and the interface is now much easier to use. Just take a look at our new version to see how much the look and feel have improved.
We hope you like our new logo, name, layouts, our pings and topics. We’d love to hear your opinion. Just leave a comment here or have your say on our new Facebook fanpage. We will listen to everyone, but for the time being, let’s leave StormDriver Alpha Test behind, and move on to Ping.it Beta Test!
On a side note – some of you might still have StormDriver folders and pendrives we gave out on LWS 2012 conference and other occasions. I’d hold on to them if I were you. When we launch a gazillion dollar IPO, we expect those early StormDriver collectibles to be more valuable than Elvis’s pants.
Some technical stuff
And just to answer some questions that might pop-out, here’s a short guide to the name change (and what it means for you).
- This is only a rebrand and a layout overhaul. Our database remains unaffected. You won’t lose your account, user history, pings, cred or pretty much anything – they all carry through to Ping.it!
- Beta was a good moment for us to introduce some changes we have planned for a long time. The system is now based around sending and receiving pings – instant signals, that you can send with a single click whenever you find a nice piece of content.
- Pings are grouped in topics, so apart of following interesting people, you can just follow pings to a topic you like, or create your own topics and invite some contributors.
- We replaced Mingle and Surf with a single Discover page. We might bring back adaptive people / content recommendations at some point, but for the time being, we have decided to go forward with only most polished functionalities.
- Because of all the changes, we’d like to invite you to go through the tutorial again. It is now shorter, more to the point, and it will quickly bring you up to speed on how to use the system.
- The beta version is closed, which means the only way to get in, is to get an exclusive invitation from any member of our community. Of course alpha testers and people who signed up to StormDriver all have working accounts – just check your e-mail for an activation link, if you haven’t set it up yet. If you like the system, be sure to spread the invitations around! We will go open at some point, after we decide we are ready to handle it.
- Unfortunately we were unable to change the name of our Facebook fan page, due to Facebook’s policy and lack of user support. That’s why we’d love if you could join our new Ping.it fanpage!
- Our old Twitter account (OpenWebLayer) was renamed Ping.it and is still functional. If you want to keep on top of the latest Ping.it news, please follow us!
- As of now, www.stormdriver.com redirects to ping.it.
- If you notice StormDriver name in any e-mails, system notifications or messages, please let us know via the feedback form. We could have missed something.
That’s it. Have fun and see you in… Ping.it. We need your help to make it the best upcoming social platform out there!