Sunday, January 24, 2010

Updates and Changes at America Rides Maps


I realize posts have tapered off here at the Cultivated Biker. There is so much going on behind the scenes I owe an explanation;


Following a very successful year, I've made some major investments.


1) I've finally updated my systems and upgraded all my software. I'm now working off a MAC platform and it's a much welcomed change. All new top-of-the-line professional software has been purchased and installed. I am spending long days and often much of the nights learning how the new programs work and how to best apply them.


2) The current focus is on upgrading the storefront and improving the user interface to make it easier for you to find what you want, get the information you need, and locate the best bargains and deals. The SSL secure system has added new features and functionality over time and I am working to implement them. This project is close to completion.


3) The next task will be to update and improve the web site and better integrate it with the storefront. The approach I'm taking is to streamline and consolidate while adding additional features. Time for a fresh face and a makeover.


4) Once this is done I will turn to updating the maps for 2010. This years focus is on adding more detail and useful information. I anticipate only a few new roads will be added to existing maps. Now is the time to email your suggestions and recommendations to wayne@americaridesmaps.com. I'll be adding to the features along the Blue Ridge Parkway, improving the navigation that identifies the exits, and gradually adding more places to eat, stay, and visit on your travels.


5) Finally, I've hired an expert to help me make the most use of social networking to provide you with content and information that is full of benefits for you. The goal is to maximize security, prevent spam, and give you control over receiving the information which interests you. I have tons of stuff to offer, but at the same time, I don't want to become a nuisance. I'm trying to perfect a system which works best for you.


6) Already done - I've launched a new blog, Smoky Mountain Rider, easy to find at smokymountainrider.com . Unlike the Cultivated Biker, which will remain the official blog for America Rides Maps, Smoky Mountain Rider is independent and will feature general and useful information about motorcycle riding in the region. On occasion I will be cross posting articles to this site.


7) I've also changed the newsletter to a new more functional host that will allow for better presentation and more control for you. Current newsletter subscribers have been informed of the coming change. Still working out the last few bugs, but it should roll out for February.


While my plate may be full, I'm working through it one bite at a time. Thanks for your patience and support and look forward to all the improvements that will benefit you.


Thanks,