Busy busy busy

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[ If you just want the update on invitations, skip to the end. In short, 2400 have been sent and about 1000 more will go out during the next 7 days ] Workin' on the Rav

(Yes, it's yet another photo of Bob. It's unavoidable - if you've got a camera, he'll get in front of it.)

First of all, thank you all SO MUCH for your donations. We can see them all come in along with your Ravelry username, avatar, and all that and we appreciate every single contribution. I really think that donations are going to make all of the difference - I hope that your contributions will help us get Ravelry up on it's feet without compromising anything. Also, we won't have to cry a little when the next monthly server bill hits our credit card :)

Jess and I have been very busy responding to a mountain of feedback and improving Ravelry. I release a new version of the site daily and there are always feature updates, bug fixes, and improvements being rolled out. A few of the recent updates:

  • Last night, I introduced a big change in the pattern editing features. Any Raveler can now adopt a book, website, or magazine and help to add and improve the information that is in Ravelry's database. It's been going well so far and I'm really excited about how our pattern database is shaping up. We now have have 6674 pattern pages on Ravelry and more than 1/3 of them have been checked by someone for completeness and general goodness (and that number is rising fast). Once we get a couple kinks worked out, the Yarn section will get the same treatment. Great job, volunteer editors! Also, a really BIG thank you to the super-editors who have been with us since before this feature was added. I see you helping people with their editing questions in the forums and it is much appreciated.
  • A couple new toys like a better search by tag (ie. find projects tagged with "harrypotter", "blue", or "ugly") and a random UGH! browser (UGHs are projects that people have marked as disasters) with a "most favorited" browser to accompany it.
  • We've added a wiki-like User's Guide. There is a lot to Ravelry and we take pride in keeping it easy to use and intuitive. Still, the new community edited guide was sorely needed. The guide will be a great place share answers to frequently asked questions, find out about different tips and tricks, and learn all about Ravelry.
  • Bug fixes, performance improvements, and browser quirk fixes. We've still got lots of outstanding IE 6 and Safari issues. They'll all be fixed, but in the meantime, please give Firefox a shot.

Also, lots of people have written to ask if we could fill the void left by DeStash. Of course we can! We just need some nice stash browsing pages. At the moment, we have over 1600 skeins (635 different stashed yarns) that people have marked as "will trade or sell".

Finally - a quick update on invitation status. So far, 2414 invites have been sent out. About 800 invites went out in the last week and we expect to send out a little over 1000 during the next 7 days. I know that lots of sites say "beta", but we *really are* in beta and we just aren't ready for you all yet. I just want to reiterate that the invitations are going out in the order that they were received. We don't see any names until they are sent (because we are CCed on the emails). Thanks again for your patience!

oh - one last thing: we still haven't had a chance to give our blog the Ravelry design treatment, but feel free to swing by if you want to leave a comment: http://blog.ravelry.com.