Local server for lds.org

Discussions about Internet service providers (ISPs), the Meetinghouse Firewall, wired and wireless networking, usage, management, and support of Meetinghouse Internet
Saikia
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Local server for lds.org

Postby Saikia » Wed Jan 30, 2013 10:21 am

Our ward has pretty low internet speed - about 4Mbps down and 0.9 up. With the new curriculum, teachers show up with tablets and laptops to stream stuff and kills the bandwidth. I am wondering if I can setup a local server and download the entire website and redirect access to website to the server. My questions are:

1. Is this possible to do with www.lds.org? Is there any Church policy that might prevent this?
2. I am not a server guy, but I have enough IT experience. With a bit of help, I can set this up. Can I get a bit of help what will I need OS/Software wise to set this up?

Any other comments and questions will be greatly appreciated.

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johnshaw
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Re: Local server for lds.org

Postby johnshaw » Wed Jan 30, 2013 10:31 am

I have personal experience using website copiers attempting much the same thing as you're looking for. The issues, typically, with proxies, or copiers, is the dynamic nature of the content. With responsive design, among many other things, volume is another, I'm sure this will be very difficult to implement.
“A long habit of not thinking a thing wrong, gives it a superficial appearance of being right, and raises at first a formidable outcry in defense of custom.”
― Thomas Paine, Common Sense

techgy
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Re: Local server for lds.org

Postby techgy » Wed Jan 30, 2013 10:36 am

Saikia wrote:Our ward has pretty low internet speed - about 4Mbps down and 0.9 up. With the new curriculum, teachers show up with tablets and laptops to stream stuff and kills the bandwidth. I am wondering if I can setup a local server and download the entire website and redirect access to website to the server......
Your best solution to this problem is to get the word to those who need to show videos during a class presentation, to download those videos in advance (at their homes) and bring the video to class on a flash drive or laptop.

Depending upon the Internet for a class presentation, regardless of the speed/bandwidth, is a risky thing to do. A spiritual presentation can easily be ruined if the video should stop or you lose your connection.

Saikia
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Re: Local server for lds.org

Postby Saikia » Wed Jan 30, 2013 10:43 am

The ones using laptops or android or windows devices, I can ask them to download in advance (and most do already). But the ones using i-pad or i-phone (which there seem to be plenty), the word is that you cannot download - not that I am a i-anything expert (never owned one - I use a windows 8 phone).

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Re: Local server for lds.org

Postby jdcr256 » Wed Jan 30, 2013 10:58 am

You can easily download videos to any iOS device using the Gospel Library app. Just go to Manage Library, then find the video section, navigate to the category of video you are interested in, and tap the download icon. The video then shows up in the Video section of your library and can be played directly from the app.

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johnshaw
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Re: Local server for lds.org

Postby johnshaw » Wed Jan 30, 2013 11:46 am

Downloading the videos is not the problem. Human Nature does not account well for the differences. It doesn't make much sense to people that their $20-$25 dollar a month connection well exceeds many ISP's in a meetinghouse (don't need a lecture on why that is the case - it is irrelevant to the individual) - We can teach about downloading ahead of time all you want, the issue is that multiple times during the day A leader wants to access leader.lds.org or someone wants to pull up the RS training on VT or an article from General Conference. sometimes they feel the 'inspiration' to share in the middle of the class not having prepared ahead of time what they will be saying.

The ask is legitimate, the instruction to download a video ahead of time pre-supposes that the only thing a member wants to do on the Internet is play the Come, Follow Me videos... I pounded and pounded the drum that the Come, Follow Me videos are NOT what matters. They are a drop in the bucket compared to what members WANT to do, and the resources that are available to them.

The back-pedaling instructions we have serve us well for a specific circumstance (12-18 year old YM/YW/SS classes) it does not provide answers for all other use cases.

If the Church, as they are, is pushing us to use digital media and/or online content (meetinghouses being built this year will not receive printed pictures - for example) a solution, I hope, is in the works.
“A long habit of not thinking a thing wrong, gives it a superficial appearance of being right, and raises at first a formidable outcry in defense of custom.”

― Thomas Paine, Common Sense

russellhltn
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Re: Local server for lds.org

Postby russellhltn » Wed Jan 30, 2013 12:19 pm

JohnShaw wrote:The back-pedaling instructions we have serve us well for a specific circumstance (12-18 year old YM/YW/SS classes) it does not provide answers for all other use cases.


However, that IS the answer we've received from the techs at CHQ. At this point they won't support problem-free streaming from their end, so we're stuck with downloading. Be it downloading to the device or downloading to a local cache.
Have you searched the Wiki?
Try using a Google search by adding "site:tech.lds.org/wiki" to the search criteria.

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aebrown
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Re: Local server for lds.org

Postby aebrown » Wed Jan 30, 2013 12:33 pm

JohnShaw wrote:The back-pedaling instructions we have serve us well for a specific circumstance (12-18 year old YM/YW/SS classes) it does not provide answers for all other use cases.

Why are you singling out the youth-oriented videos? Other videos can be downloaded as well. That will benefit teachers of classes for Primary, Gospel Doctrine, Gospel Essentials, MP, RS, etc.

jdcr256
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Re: Local server for lds.org

Postby jdcr256 » Wed Jan 30, 2013 12:53 pm

JohnShaw wrote:sometimes they feel the 'inspiration' to share in the middle of the class not having prepared ahead of time what they will be saying.


I agree that the ability to incorporate other media into a lesson on the spur of the moment is a nice to have, but I don't think this is a very high priority problem for the church to invest tithing funds into solving.

I also agree that the Sunday peak time experience for using lds.org and related tools hasn't been an optimal experience, but I don't think a good long-term solution for the church is to invest in expensive infrastructure in order to equip church buildings with top-of-the-line technology.

Currently there are several offline-while-at-church methods that members and leaders can use to circumvent the lack of bandwidth and server capacity on Sundays. Videos can be downloaded ahead of time, you can keep an enormous library of resources locally on a smart phone or tablet, more leader data is becoming available all the time through native apps like LDS Tools. Aside from that, members will always be able to use their own 3G or 4G connections however they like.

I think rather than equipping each building with business class internet connections, the better long-term solution is to find ways to minimize data transfer, and push more computing requirements to the client through native apps and newer browser technology. These types of solutions can both improve the user experience, and save the church money.

I'm not in-the-know on the church's meetinghouse technology plans, but I doubt providing a good broadband experience to all members while at church is in the cards.

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johnshaw
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Re: Local server for lds.org

Postby johnshaw » Wed Jan 30, 2013 1:21 pm

russellhltn wrote:
JohnShaw wrote:The back-pedaling instructions we have serve us well for a specific circumstance (12-18 year old YM/YW/SS classes) it does not provide answers for all other use cases.


However, that IS the answer we've received from the techs at CHQ. At this point they won't support problem-free streaming from their end, so we're stuck with downloading. Be it downloading to the device or downloading to a local cache.


Agreed, this is true, if we're referring to downloading media content ahead of time to avoid streaming from ill-equipped Internet Speeds in many meetinghouses. I, however, am not referring to streaming videos during SS or Youth classes.

There are leadership meetings accessing lds.org directory/calendar/newsletter, general membership who have a thought during a class and search for that General Conference talk that inspired them for a quote to share in a lesson. Potentially a High Council meeting or stake auxiliary meeting going on where a video conference or web-sharing session might be taking place, a Primary leader or nursery leader who wants to show a story from the videos created by the Scripture Primers that are out there or eventually show the digital media. What about the librarian who is asked to look something up and print it out. What if my RS or Priesthood or YM or YW want to sing a hymn and access the church's music player because nobody in that ward can play the piano... This is our reality now, or if it isn't, it soon will be.
“A long habit of not thinking a thing wrong, gives it a superficial appearance of being right, and raises at first a formidable outcry in defense of custom.”

― Thomas Paine, Common Sense


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