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Tesla Website! - It the Model S firmware reflects your website...we're doomed!

You guys really have to invest in the web infrastructure. This is ridiculous!

Elon - really - have you EVER tried to access this site? Noon, 4PM, 9PM, it doesn't matter...it is truly pathetic.

This is as representative of your values as the pure white floor.

Respectfully,

Rob (#3031)

I don't know if you are referring to the fact that it is dog slow or that logging in is a PITA (it remembers just from time to time and sometime just times out in the process). In any case, I agree with you. There is only so long you can blame a lame web experience on the infancy of the company or of its website.

I totally agree. The web site performance is pretty horrible all the time. It would also be nice to get a search and edit function.

And while we are at it: Private messages.

Agreed. It's time for a makeover!

Nicu,

It is the speed and overall performance. The logging in aspect works OK on my PC's, MAC's, and even my Linux machine... But the speed, the frequent downtime and overall user experience points to a tiny underinvestment in this particular part of the corporation.

George Blankenship spent money putting the Tesla logo on every car carrier in the Fremont plant, yet the lack of investment in the internet face of Tesla has the performance of a Yugo!

I wonder how many servers they have running the forums -- I've noticed that it has worse issues during peak times.

Also, I haven't really looked at the source for each page loaded, but I wouldn't be terribly surprised if there were a lot of requests going on. Consolidating css, javascript, and enabling compression can reduce wait time noticeably.

I think I remember noticing that they use Drupal before, but I'm not positive that was this site. If they are, there are some forum plugins that allow for a lot of the missing functionality. They would need to figure out how to migrate the database, but I would imagine one could write a migration script without too much difficulty.

Hey Tesla, I'll contract this work with you for a Model S :D

Why is the latest model s features page not directly available on the website? People who have yet to put a deposit on a model s may not do so if your website functioning scares them off.

I agree, the website performance and the forums in particular are pathetic! I just ran into George Blankenship at the Seattle store the other day and I wish I had thought of the website when I did or I surely would have beaten him up about it.

Funny, I am only here for the Forums... :)

well for bugs regarding the website, Tesla need to tell typekit.com to fix there system
I just hope that they dont plan on adding support for FLASH in the car
(typekit is own by adobe)

no way, Flash on that nice console would shorten the range by 50 miles at least

Re: BYT "Funny, I am only here for the Forums"

In that case, you need to head on over to TeslaMotorsClub.com for some real forums that actually load at a decent speed.

If they add Flash to the console, we can end the Jobs/Musk comparisons.

IMHO, they could save themselves some effort and expense by simply getting rid of this forum and redirect everyone to http://www.teslamotorsclub.com/ which is much more full-featured and has better performance, then put in some solid investment into the rest of their site and their all-but-abandoned blog.

The overall design is really nice (forum excluded), but the performance needs a nudge.

My 2 cents...

Actually I like this forum very much (performance and features, or lack thereof, aside). It has a slightly different audience and a slightly different tone than teslamotorsclub.com. I think that's additional value and they should not scrap it. It is also a great source for information (if you use Google to search it) and I guess it has some value for Tesla itself as it draws a lot of Tesla-related search queries to the teslamotors.com website.

Very true Volker. I just wish they would put some horsepower behind it.

I also hope they're a LOT better at making cars than they are at running a website. :)

Seems like it's better now. Maybe someone heard you.

Personally I do like TeslaMotorsClub.com better. I somewhat agree this entire forum could be flushed.

I think that we may have gotten someone's attention...definitely faster. THANKS!

Rob

I think the "faster" is just a traffic fluctuation. When there's another big publicity event or similar, it'll slow down or stop completely again (I was getting timeouts for a full half day during the factory tour, e.g.).

I am an active poster on the Tesla Motors Club Forum. It is very professional looking, has all the features we need, it is well moderated, and the posters are respectful, and well-informed. Nevertheless, I agree that ideally Tesla should have its own forum, but only if it is not an embarassment.

This forum sets a poor example to first-time visitors that might actually scare off prospective buyers. If Tesla can't devote the necessary resources to keep pornography off of its forums, and can't even properly host its forums, then it is not unreasonable for visitors to conclude that Tesla is really not a serious high tech automotive company.

The Tesla folks are pretty smart, eventually they'll figure this out and devote the necessary resource. Without conventional advertising they are going to need a means of enlisting the assistance of their loyal followers to help sell the Model S. The forum as it is currently hobbled does not help do that.

Larry

I have used both TM & TMC sites and feel we need both. As noted by many, the TM site needs much more attention (housekeeping, asked and answered, and all the above comments) but I would rather see TM put the priority on getting the Model S done right/on time ... so I'll willing to cut them some slack until the end of the year (no more!!!)

It's remarkable how emotional people get about these things.

I'm on the other side of the fence. I log in once a reboot, I leave the browser open, I refresh 0-5 times a day. It's not fast but it's not "let me get a drink, this will take a while".

Regarding the quality and finish of the vehicles being reflected by the web forum software, that's a heck of a leap. By that metric most of the Fortune 500 wouldn't be worth investing in. And anybody that even mentioned a preferred browser vendor is a company I wouldn't invest a $1 in.

If I heard something in the next conference call along the lines of "spent ____ more on new web site software", I would find that as something to shake my confidence in their priorities.

I rather Tesla spend time designing and making cars then mucking around with web site forums.

The website represents the brand. Do you think that Amazon would tolerate a slow website? No, because that's their core business. Fast website, fast search = fast ordering, fast profitability.

But would a company like Apple tolerate - or ever allow its website to be painfully slow? Remember, this is the www.teslamotors.com site - not a separate forum location.

And because George Blankenship came from Apple, he has leveraged nuances to create the desired Tesla brand - applying Apple lessons learned to their retail sales environment.

So, I agree that the software of the car does not equal the software of the website...but the brand is negatively impacted, ever so slightly, and this is not the thing to do at this critical stage of the company.

I am a fan, a reservation holder and a shareholder - I am 110% FOR the company. And it is because of this that I care!

There are enough things that can (and probably will) go wrong but having a slow-ish website in late 2011 should NOT be one of them.

Thanks for listening.

@RobPaul

For Amazon and Apple, the web is directly related to their core business so I would argue those are poor examples for making your argument.

Any company that sells its products using web should make it as good as possible. Tesla is no different to rest of them.

Forum itself works now, it isn't perfect but at least it isn't extremely slow either. Problem is that spammers can register to users too easily, there is no protection against that in the registration page. Fix that, and that problem goes away. After that there isn't much to do here. However the fact that it takes so long for them to fix that is an embarrassment to Tesla. Anybody coming here the first time goes first to "general" forum, and they see only three full pages of spam. That's bad. Really bad.

After that there isn't much to do here. (Timo)

I beg to differ: There are a few crucial features that would make these forums so much more useful and enjoyable:

- Search (you can use Google's "site:" option to search public topics, but not the ones marked as "private", i.e. reservation holders only)

- Private messages (people who get to know each other on the forums want to get into contact without sharing their email addresses with the entire world)

- Edit feature (the form and shape of this feature may be debatable but an option to quickly fix typos or broken HTML would be very much appreciated)

If you want to endorse these requests, you can add your comment to this thread:
http://www.teslamotors.com/forum/forums/tesla-we-need-search-google-does...
(Marked "private" so that only reservation holders can post. I hope that this helps for Tesla taking the request seriously.)

There are certainly faster or fancier forums out there, but I'll live with it.

Despite the limitations, this forum is good enough to capture all these (ironic) comments.

Whenever you birth a sea change product, it's an all-hands mission that takes maniacal focus. With delivery just months away, if they got distracted with every soft issue, they'd miss the goal.

I'm not buying a website, so keeping the intellectual focus on delivering a great car suits me just fine. Not pausing to guild the website tells me Elon's team has their priorities right.

The eyes of the world, and the hopes of so many ... are pinned on these few.

Tesla needs to focus on the cars, but they shouldn't have an embarrassing forum on their website. It's painfully slow, there's no posting of pics or easy ways to quote, no PM's, no search...buts lots and lots of spam!

This has largely driven me away from here, and I suspect many others too. The TMC forum is much better and Tesla could learn a lot from them; they seem to run it with basically 2 guys and some software. My marketing advice would be to shut this forum down for the time being and direct people to TMC - it's clean fast and (unlike other independent forums) no ad's to speak of.

regarding the speed of the forum, I recently came here at work (believe it or not, some of us don't do this during the day!) to show a co-worker how slow the forums were, but had not logged in... Actually they were pretty snappy when visiting without logging in. I think the problem is related to their queries to see what your account has "viewed". I think their database is very slow, but the website itself is fast enough. They need a database optimization since the forums are basically worthless without logging in to see what has been updated since you last looked.


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