Sometimes you just have to be willing to stop and start over when you find a better solution. We had this happen to us recently…
We have been working on some big features since October of last year. At the time we discovered that a specific piece of technology was not available so we weighed the cost of building it ourselves. After months of planning and building automated tests to ensure stability, we started breaking ground on the new feature. During the final rounds of testing, we thought we were ready to release, but a few edge-case bugs were discovered late in the game that required more time. But our willingness to delay our release paid off when we got some very welcome news … one of our existing vendors had just released a much better (aka more flexible) version of the technology we were trying to build.
Now we had a choice, use what we built with our own two hands and support it for the long haul – or – do even more work to scrap what we had built and rebuild with the new feature in our toolbox, and delay our launch. Gazelle is not immune from bad ideas, but we try not marry them. We made the choice to delay our big feature for another few weeks and rebuilt the entire backend from scratch using a more reliable and flexible piece of technology.
Building a software is full of little decisions like this that will either help or hinder your long-term growth. We have made a commitment to our customers to support your business by always striving to make the right decision that will ensure the long-term success of Gazelle.
Stay tuned for some exciting announcements from Gazelle over the course of the next week!
We just rolled out an update to the Gazelle mobile app that lets you view and approve appointment reservations. Whenever a client uses the online self-scheduling system, your phone will now show a list of reservations that you need to review and approve, and you can do it right from your phone!
This actually includes some improvements over the approval process on our website: you are now able to resolve conflicting information on your phone. For example, if an existing client enters a different phone number than what you have on record, you can choose what to do with that information. You can replace their existing number, add it as a secondary, or even create a completely new contact record for the client.
Update your app from the Google Play Store or Apple App Store to version 1.1.5 to get this new feature.
Happy New Year… change the batteries in your smoke detectors and back up your database… but at Gazelle we already backed up your data… over 8,000 times last year alone.
Here is a little piece of boring but super important info about how seriously Gazelle takes data security.
Every change you make in Gazelle is instantly copied to multiple servers in separate locations. We provide you triple redundancy protection 24/7. Our servers are housed in earthquake, flood, and hurricane proof facilities each with their own power supply. If a server goes down the secondary becomes the primary and a new one is automatically brought online in a different location.
But this is not enough, every hour we take a back up of the entire database, encrypt it, and ship it to Sydney Australia and Portland Oregon. We have never needed these back ups but they are there so that your data will be protected even if a level 5 natural disaster happens to simultaneously hit all 3 of our primary server locations.
Bottom line: we take our job seriously and plan for things you never thought about so that you don’t have to think about them.
Simplify your life and focus on the things you love!
In 2014 we started Gazelle with a promise to the piano service industry: to address the big issues we struggle with daily. We had many people tell us why our vision “could not be done” and how “it’s too big of a project, for too small of an industry”. Yet, today with the landing of our apps on both app stores, we are humbled as we hear more and more stories about how Gazelle is literally changing your lives and businesses.
Our mission is not complete! Native apps are a huge step forward, but it’s really just the beginning of our journey.
We promise to keep working our tails off to give you an even more comprehensive solution that addresses all of your business’ needs. This year has been fun, but we can’t wait to show you what we have cooking for 2017!
Tomorrow you’ll notice some improvements to the way invoices work in Gazelle.
These changes are based on lots of feedback we’ve received and will make Gazelle invoices easier to use. This is also a necessary first step toward another feature we have planned for the future: integration with 3rd party apps like Quickbooks.
The main change is that we removed the concept of groups. You no longer need to create groups or subgroups for invoice items. Instead, each invoice item can be associated with a piano. Behind the scenes we magically group all invoice items per piano for you.
We also made it easier to convert a condition report, in part or in whole, to an invoice.
We’ve received some questions and concerns about our database in relation to Hurricane Matthew. Rest assured we are hurricane-ready and even have multiple backups around the world. It’s true that our main data center is located in Virginia and it’s possible that Matthew will reach it in some form, but we’re ready.
We are very serious when it comes to data security and backups. So much so that we have multiple backups in different forms around the world. It starts with us having two databases running at the same time. Every time you click “Save” in Gazelle, your data is written to two databases in two separate physical locations. Beyond that, we take hourly snapshots of the database and store it encrypted in three locations around the world: Virginia US, Oregon US, and Sydney AU.
Our data center in Virginia is prepared for hurricanes and we are not expecting any storm-related outages. But even in the worst case where our Virginia data center goes offline, we would restore the database from one of our other backups and keep running. You can rest assured that your data is safe.