Reclaim Hosting: the VHS Days

Image of Reclaim Hosting's new homepage A Rotating Easter Egg is just one of the many features of Reclaim Hosting’s New VHS-Inspired Site Design

It’s official, Reclaim Hosting‘s website got an overhaul, and in addition to featuring Bryan Mather‘s updated VHS-inspired designs it also highlights several new services and products we are offering. Before I go into detail, I have to note that this re-design is entirely Lauren Brumfield‘s brainchild. She did the lion’s share of the site re-design as a professional development project that once we caught wind of it quickly became slated for a Fall launch. That speaks volumes to Lauren’s work ethic and impeccable sense of design, and I’m blown away by what she has accomplished. So, all hail Lauren!

Repo Man Migrations

The site does retain much of the art we used previously. For example, the Migrations page still features the glowing green car inspired by Repo Man (1984), and in many ways in the age of VHS at Reclaim Hosting the visual is more appropriate than ever ?

And the VHS Aesthetic is no where more apparent than in the new headers for many of the products. For example, we had soft released the new VHS icons for the Personal, Professional, and Org plans, but the labelled VHS tape in the header really ties the room together.

Managed Hosting at Reclaim

We’ve also added more managed services beyond WordPress MultiSite, including Virtual Private Servers and the soon to be released Commons in a Box offering. And as I mentioned yesterday, we are now offering shared and dedicated hosting for Pressbooks for all you waiting for the open textbook rapture. In fact, providing more managed shared hosting services like this is a direction we are hoping to explore in even more depth in the coming months.

Pressbooks screenshot

We are also now offering Professional Services, which folks can sign-up for if they need a hacked site(s) cleaned up, site monitoring, custom software installed/configured, and priority support and consultation. It is something folks have asked us about repeatedly, like Pressbooks, and for those running accounts that are mission critical, have a history of getting hacked, or just need to go above and beyond this may be a good option.

Reclaim getting all Professional

Finally, Lauren reach out to folks who we currently support, and you will see a number of pull quotes—like those below—punctuating various pages of the site.

Remain a big fan of of that human technology Lora Taub-Pervizpour!

No, YOU are superb, LaNeta! And your taste in academic hosting companies is flawless.

Did Tom Woodward say something positive about someone? A blog grows in Brooklyn!

It’s cool to read what the folks who work with us have to say, and when I look at the new site there is no small element of pride and excitement at how well-rounded and fully-featured our services have become, and I don’t think our personalized support and attention to detail have gotten lost in the mix. We continue to grow intentionally and scale for human growth and that, dear reader, has made all the difference!

Make Some Noise

A couple of weeks ago I wrote about a conversation I had with Bryan Mathers at OER17 regarding the new default splash page for new accounts on Reclaim Hosting. I got so taken away with Bryan’s Dali take on Reclaim that I forgot what we originally talked about: namely a turntable letting folks know their site works and they can login and “Make Some Noise.”

Awesome, right? And Bryan even animated the image, which we are working on integrating for all new shared hosting accounts on Reclaim. 

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, imagining the whole Reclaim aesthetic (not to mention the Rockaway Hosting aesthetic) has been the most fun I have had in a long while. It just keeps on making me smile.

A Re-Possessed Aesthetic

As I wrote about previously, Bryan Mathers has been working on some designs for a couple of elements of the Reclaim Hosting site. In particular, a visual for the Migrations page as well as one for the various shared hosting packages we offer. He sent us the art this week, and as usual with his stuff it made me glow as green as a repossessed Chevy Malibu!


In terms of the Migrations page aesthetic, I’ll quote myself here from the previous post to give a bit of context:

Tim, Lauren and I had been brainstorming what visuals we needed for the website. One of the things Tim mentioned was artwork that might help communicate our migrations service. We provide anyone that signs up free migrations to our hosting service. This is something few, if any, other hosting services provide, and I believe it does go above and beyond. Moving your stuff is stressful, and we make it painless, so the idea was to communicate this. Bryan had the idea of people outside a van with white gloves moving crates of records, which I totally loved. It set me down the road to Repo-perdition. In Repo Man the government agents worked out of a hi-tech industrial bread delivery truck (you can see the back of it in the image above–also what is the technical term for that kind of truck?). This image of movers with white gloves made me think of the government agents in nuclear suits moving the contaminated bodies of the homeless in Repo Man.

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Inside Reclaim Records

inside the store

Reclaim Records is starting to get further fleshed out thanks to the latest installment from the great Bryan Mathers. I really love the colors in this one, not to mention the synchronization of all the details we’ve been working on from album covers, to the #ds106 coffee mug, to the awesome EDUPUNK poster (a work of art within the work of art), the smack-talking on Canada, and the figure behind the counter. The idea will be to switch the face of Reclaim—this one presumably me given the hairline and glasses—with caricatures of Tim and Lauren. Each of us behind the counter server up the goods. What this image makes me want more than anything else is a Reclaim storefront.
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