Blog Technology

It all started with an Error 505…

Several weeks ago we had about 5,000 to 50,000 visitors going direct to our website, using some of our newer marketing techniques… well, the marketing was successful, but the UX was not. Most of these visitors received an Error page because our shared server with BlueHost could not handle that volume of traffic. It was a horrible experience…

So this week we’ve been migrating from BlueHost to Amazon AWS for My Home Agent, because BlueHost shared server has not been able to handle some of the traffic.

We originally signed up for the shared server, then switched to the BlueHost dedicated server, but the time delay and lack of sufficient support forced us to do what we always wanted to… which was switch to Amazon AWS.

Now we’re learning more about Amazon AWS, Amazon Certificate Manager for the SSL, and while trying to implement the SSL, ran into some snafus. So now, we’re learning more about website security, security certificates, and DNS records.

Also, my interest in things like Linux, Apache, Ubuntu and Bitnami have been peeked. As you’re working with these things from a Mac, instead as it seems most do on a PC, running commands from the terminal and using SSH Keys is new and interesting.

It’s like Pandora’s box… we were just trying to increase the capability of handling higher volume of traffic on BlueHost… now we know about things like Route 53 (for DNS settings), about Elastic Load Balancers… some basic issues just become so complex with technology, so quickly, that it’s mentally challenging but also can at times feel like you’re falling down a bottomless pit and trying to slow down by reaching the sides, somewhere, anywhere, completely in the dark.

Blog Technology

Google Home is now Google Nest, and Amazon skills are now Amazon Apps

Two major updates in the #voicefirst wars between Google and Amazon… Google just emailed users stating Google Home is simplifying its branding to be ‘Google Nest’ and separately today, we noticed on some of our iPhones the ‘Amazon Skills’ built My Home Agent for Realtors are being referred to as ‘Amazon Apps’.

The switch from Google Home to Google Nest is still not perfect, creating more confusion around the concept around the Nest Thermostat that Google acquired and Smart Speaker technology. Apparently, ‘Home’ is limiting because the goal is to continue unleash Google Assistant in the home and beyond.

Personally, it would seem like ‘Google Voice’ or an ‘Amazon Alexa’ or ‘Apple Siri’ like name would be a better play, especially with Google Assistant is essentially the primary competitor to ‘Alexa’ and but already beating the relative newcomer ‘Siri’.

And on the same day, we noticed that Amazon on our iPhones in Santa Monica is referred to its confusing idea of “Amazon Skills” and “Amazon Flash Briefings’ as Amazon Apps, which 100% makes more sense. While the terms Skills and Flash Briefings are becoming more widely used, the distinction and confusion created with these terms was always unnecessary and created a lot of user friction.

If you check today on, Skills are still Skills, and not Apps, but we hope Apps is the branding in the future. The confusion on what Amazon Alexa is compared to Amazon Echo is also an issue. Amazon Voice, on the Echo, would also be great and it’d be nice if the branding for Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa were more unified for marketing and positioning purposes.

By David Bramante
Published on May 7, 2019