Is Faithlife self-supporting?

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This post has 45 Replies | 5 Followers

Posts 6
ReformedPilgrim | Forum Activity | Posted: Tue, Jan 12 2021 6:56 AM

Does Faithlife use their own servers to host all of their content? Do our Logos resources reside on Faithlife owned servers or a third party? I'd be real upset if some third party decided they didn't like Faithlife and all of a sudden I can't access any of my Logos materials.

Posts 9151
LogosEmployee

We use a mix of cloud and private hosting. Unfortunately, if you're worried about third parties shutting us down, there's no such thing as having a truly independent service. Just for example, we're critically dependent on the following services provided by others:

  • Data center hosting, power, and air-conditioning
  • ISP bandwidth
  • Allocated IP address ranges
  • Content delivery network
  • Payment processor to charge customers' credit cards
  • Banking
  • Electricity

Posts 9151
LogosEmployee

I forgot some Smile

  • Domain registrars
  • DNS providers
  • TLS & code-signing certificate providers
  • App Stores

Posts 772
Jerry Bush | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jan 12 2021 9:30 AM

ReformedPilgrim:

Does Faithlife use their own servers to host all of their content? Do our Logos resources reside on Faithlife owned servers or a third party? I'd be real upset if some third party decided they didn't like Faithlife and all of a sudden I can't access any of my Logos materials.

I have no inside knowledge here, but it seems like I heard that the content is on AWS. Plus - and my memory on when this happened is fuzzy - I remember once when AWS was having serious problems one day for a few hours, Logos was misbehaving as well. 

Take that with one-half a grain of salt.

iMac (2019 model), 3Ghz 6 Core Intel i5, 16gb Ram, Radeon Pro Graphics. 500GB SSD.

Posts 5585
SineNomine | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jan 12 2021 9:52 AM

ReformedPilgrim:
I'd be real upset if some third party decided they didn't like Faithlife and all of a sudden I can't access any of my Logos materials.

Let's suppose the absolute worst-case of scenario of every single external service provider to Faithlife suddenly blocking/blacklisting them tomorrow. Permanently.

You'd still have indefinite access to everything already downloaded on your laptop(s), desktop(s), and mobile device(s). With virtual machines and various other relevant technologies, you could run your existing desktop installation(s) for a very, very long time.

Posts 1993
Donnie Hale | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jan 12 2021 9:53 AM

Bradley Grainger (Faithlife):

  • Domain registrars
  • DNS providers
  • TLS & code-signing certificate providers
  • App Stores

  • Operating system
  • Compiler tool chain
  • Framework
  • Everything hardware-related

Obviously, the list goes on. If a provider of any of these is so inclined as to refuse to provide / license, there will be an impact.

-Donnie

Posts 33484
Forum MVP
MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jan 12 2021 1:07 PM

And, folks, Faithlife is located on the West Coast which the next BIG earthquake is going to bury under the sea.!! Yes, I'm joking. It is good to be aware of the outages that can affect you - especially for things like Proclaim and the preaching mode of Sermon/Homily. In fact, I think it is wise to have some basic plans as to how to adjust your services to a variety of potential disasters. Good initial question, ReformedPilgrim.

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

Posts 25226
Forum MVP
Graham Criddle | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jan 12 2021 1:41 PM

MJ. Smith:
It is good to be aware of the outages that can affect you - especially for things like Proclaim and the preaching mode of Sermon/Homily.

True - but neither Proclaim nor preaching mode for Sermon / Homily (on mobile) require an active Internet connection to function.

Posts 33484
Forum MVP
MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jan 12 2021 2:23 PM

Graham Criddle:
True - but neither Proclaim nor preaching mode for Sermon / Homily (on mobile) require an active Internet connection to function.

True ... but walk into church to set up for 5:45 Mass on Saturday and (a) find the sound system is out or (b) the electricity is out ... done both, first was easier than the second.  Then there was the Ash Wednesday noon service where the priests got plastered ... literally as the earthquake shook the plaster ceiling.

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

Posts 5585
SineNomine | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jan 12 2021 2:34 PM

MJ. Smith:
And, folks, Faithlife is located on the West Coast which the next BIG earthquake is going to bury under the sea.

I seem to remember something about them having servers and such somewhere in the States that's not on the West Coast, but I forget exactly where.

MJ. Smith:
I think it is wise to have some basic plans as to how to adjust your services to a variety of potential disasters. Good initial question, ReformedPilgrim.

Seconded on both points.

Posts 232
Tony Walker | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jan 12 2021 2:37 PM

I'm not smart enough tech-wise to think through everything mentioned above, but I had a simpler and similar thought. The day may/will come when what we believe (and for example a conservative commentary or sermon series on Romans 1) will be called hateful. And while electronic books and software are wonderful, what if the tech companies decided that it was in their best interest to no longer sale/support/host/etc them? I imagine it like Fahrenheit 451 in the snap of a finger.

I obviously don’t like bad stuff on the internet. But I also don't like something like a sweeping mass censorship because someone does something I don’t agree with or might not like. Sorta diff topic, but when I was a kid my stepdad shot my mother in the head and killed her. I found her. But never in my life have I once thought guns or certain types of guns should be illegal. Similar to this week's news, I don't like the thought of one tech company deciding who is the current bad man, because then the other tech companies get pressured and before you know it an account goes from online, banned on multiple platforms in a few days time. 

I fear that one day it will be popular to ban the theology I like to read on the technology I like to use. 

Posts 778
David A Egolf | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Jan 13 2021 5:26 AM

SineNomine:

You'd still have indefinite access to everything already downloaded on your laptop(s), desktop(s), and mobile device(s). With virtual machines and various other relevant technologies, you could run your existing desktop installation(s) for a very, very long time.

Mobile devices is where we might have the most problem.  Several years ago, it was common practice to severely limit the number of resources downloaded to mobile devices.

I did an experiment on one mobile device and downloaded at least one full commentary series.  The resulting performance was terrible.

Have things improved?  Was the poor performance due to employing a large percentage of the storage? Because one can get much larger devices, now.

I really like reading on my iPad, but I currently do not keep many resources downloaded in the expectation that I will be able to download, at will.

Posts 998
Josh Hunt | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Jan 13 2021 6:00 AM

MJ. Smith:

And, folks, Faithlife is located on the West Coast which the next BIG earthquake is going to bury under the sea.!! Yes, I'm joking. It is good to be aware of the outages that can affect you - especially for things like Proclaim and the preaching mode of Sermon/Homily. In fact, I think it is wise to have some basic plans as to how to adjust your services to a variety of potential disasters. Good initial question, ReformedPilgrim.

Matthew 24:6 (NIV) see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen.

Posts 5585
SineNomine | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Jan 13 2021 7:25 AM

David A Egolf:
Have things improved?  Was the poor performance due to employing a large percentage of the storage? Because one can get much larger devices, now.

I gather that things have improved. There are definitely a number of forum users who now have hundreds/thousands of resources on their devices.

Posts 4155
abondservant | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jan 16 2021 7:44 PM

SineNomine:

MJ. Smith:
And, folks, Faithlife is located on the West Coast which the next BIG earthquake is going to bury under the sea.

I seem to remember something about them having servers and such somewhere in the States that's not on the West Coast, but I forget exactly where.

MJ. Smith:
I think it is wise to have some basic plans as to how to adjust your services to a variety of potential disasters. Good initial question, ReformedPilgrim.

Seconded on both points.



As I recall there are two different regions with servers giving some redundancy. In theory, if Bellingham sinks into the sea, the back up servers located elsewhere would seamlessly pick up the slack.

It would be interesting for them to test this, on a monday morning. or whatever their lowest use time is.

L2 lvl4 (...) WORDsearch, L9

Posts 33484
Forum MVP
MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jan 16 2021 9:54 PM

abondservant:
It would be interesting for them to test this, on a monday morning. or whatever their lowest use time is.

The company that my employer used to backup servers required that we test every six months that we could switch seamlessly. I suspect that Faithlife tests on a regular basis. It should be (nearly) invisible to the users.

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

Posts 500
xnman | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jan 19 2021 6:05 AM

With the recent "attack" on conservatives by the big tech companies... this discussion is interesting...

I wonder how long it will be that people calling themselves "Believers" or "Christians" ... will be allowed to talk/discuss or share their faith over "Big Tech" companies part of the internet?

Will we be labeled as "Hate Mongers" for teaching Romans 1:27-32?

Will we be labeled as "Hate instigators" for teaching against some demonic worship?

And once we are labeled as such... would it follow that FaithLife is promoting all this "hate" by allowing people like us to use their programs to develop our lessons of "hate"??? Tell me again, what happened to Parler?

The recent events that shut down President Trump... is an eye opening of huge proportions!

imho. 

xn = Christan  man=man

Posts 509
Greg | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jan 19 2021 6:27 AM

MJ, 

https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2015/07/20/the-really-big-one

It won't be pretty when it happens.

Posts 33484
Forum MVP
MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jan 19 2021 3:32 PM

xnman:
With the recent "attack" on conservatives by the big tech companies... this discussion is interesting...

1. Some of us don't believe there has been an attack

2. Some of us don't see how this relates to Faithlife software and its use 

i.e. a gentle reminder of the guidelines not because there is a problem but because it's skating on the edge and could incite other forum members to cross the line.

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

Posts 40
Christopher Bucklin | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jan 19 2021 4:09 PM

MJ. Smith:

2. Some of us don't see how this relates to Faithlife software and its use 

It relates because of Parler. In a single night, this platform was completely taken out, rendered utterly useless, because of politics, and Parler's dependence on services like Amazon. This thread is actually extremely important, and I'm interested in faithlife speaking up about this. I think anyone who takes biblical prophecy seriously has to entertain the idea that this kind of censorship, this kind of intolerance towards Christians, will eventually happen. One day, faithlife as we know it will not be allowed to exist.

I'd be interested in ways to back up my local library onto a flash drive. Heck, I'd be interested in how we can install logos to remote drives so that it can run completely independent of a local instalation. Can we do this? In the event faithlife goes down, and our local computer goes down too?

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