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State of the Nation Message

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Friends & members of the Zips Nation (.org):On 23 February, 2006, ZipsNation.Org will celebrate its 2nd birthday. We now have nearly 300 members who have posted over 10,000 items of interest, optimism, pessimism, wit, smarts, stupidity and humor. We submit to you all that this experiment undertaken by the Porky's Seven continues to be a success. The Zips Nation was a sleeping giant and is beginning to rise. No further proof is needed than the 15,000 strong that filled the Zips' sideline at Ford Field in Detroit on the day after Christmas. And with very few exceptions, we have found this to be a place where all things UA can be debated and discussed in a manner befitting the Nation.The past few months have been an exhilarating time to be a part of the Nation, not only here, but in the stands and on the sidelines as well. The women's cross country, men's soccer, and football teams all brought home MAC Championship trophies. The men's soccer team enjoyed a #1 national ranking for several weeks and advanced to the final 8, falling only on penalty kicks to eventual national champion Maryland. The football team won it's first MAC Title Game and participated in the Motor City Bowl. Halfway through the '05-'06 campaign, UA leads the Director's Cup standings among MAC schools.A new energy surrounds the campus and city. Fear the Roo is everywhere. The University of Akron's players, teams, coaches and entire athletic administration have elevated their games to new heights of excellence.Friends, it is now time for ZipsNation.Org to do the same. ZN.O should endeavor to be an appropriate reflection of our Zips, even in our unofficial capacity as the web home of Zips Fans. We are a thriving community here, and have worked through some growing pains with starting a board such as this. The moderators collectively share a vision of some improvements to ZN.O. They include:- More regular / timely updates to the news forum & front page.- Integration of an image gallery area for posting Zips gameday and related images.- Freshening up of the site theme to improve navigation and ease of use.- Addition of an ignore modification for pesky player's girlfriends and UT janitors.- Publicity generation on campus and in general - getting students involved.- Dispatching a search party to the islands to locate our long lost ZIPMAN.Through the wonders of 21st century open source software and free licenses, none of the programming topics present any real out of pocket cost to ZN.O. They merely are tasks that require some time and debugging efforts. Like all Zips fans, the Moderators are gainfully employed productive members of the economy and have limits on the time we are able to lend to these tasks. Thus, we are looking for willing and able members of ZN.O to help us accomplish these goals prior to ZipsNation.Org's birthday party at the MAC tournament in March.Can you answer yes to any of the following?- Do you regularly search and find news items related to Zips Athletics?- Do you closely follow recruiting (all sports) and track prospects?- Are you willing to help assemble news items on a weekly or biweekly basis?- Do you have talents for HTTP, CSS or PHP programming / tweaking?- Are you willing to try new features out and give timely feedback?- Do you live in a dorm on campus?- Do you live near the Roundhouse?If you answer yes to any of these questions and are willing to help in an little way possible, please respond in this thread and indicate what you can offer. After a week or so, we will be contacting everyone interested to try and piece this together.Also, now would be a good time to offer up your suggestions for improvements to ZN.O. You can also do it in this thread. Please keep in mind that your suggestions will be considered and may or not be implemented for any number of reasons. Thanks for your time, your help, your hits ... and Go Zips!- The Moderators.

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