Written by Sean Valant
Friday, October 4th, 2013
If you happened to read our blog post about cPanel’s 2012 conference, then you already know that cPanel throws a conference like no other. This year’s conference was September 30 to October 2 in New Orleans, Louisiana. The meals were top-notch, the exhibition floor was packed with exhibitors and attendees, and the nightly outings and events were all quite memorable (for those who remember them). Just like we said last year: cPanel does it right!
Everything kicked off with a gathering of attendees in front of the hotel for a New Orleans tradition, a Second Line, which is basically a giant group of folks following a marching brass band. We were unhampered by the slight rain due to orange cPanel umbrellas having been supplied to the group:
While we waited on the dock prior to boarding the boat, Creole Queen, we were treated to several more tunes from the band. From our vantage point here, you can just barely see the top of the tuba, but trust us the band was there and they were amazing:
As soon as we stepped on board, we headed down to the dining hall where we were treated to some delicious Cajun food:
And the band played on:
After dinner, our cruise on the mighty Mississippi river officially began. The view of New Orleans from the water was truly impressive:
The night concluded with a party at the Masquerade Bar inside of Harrah’s casino. It might be worth noting that at this point in our tale, the actual exhibit floor of the conference had not yet opened:
The next morning, we awoke to find a little surprise. Apparently, WHMCS ninjas had deposited their custom product into each of our rooms whilst were we all out the night before. Presenting the WHMCS Complete Hangover Solution: water, Tylenol, stain remover, band-aids, Pepto, Tic-Tacs, and 5-Hour Energy:
It was then time for the exhibit floor to officially open. We spent the day chatting with customers and other industry providers, making new friends and handing out tons of HostGator merch, all from the comfort of our own booth:
We had some interesting visitors stop by and see us as well, they took a particular shine to the Snappy dolls:
Throughout the course of the conference, our displays took many different shapes and forms:
Unlike last night when we floated on a boat, tonight we rode on floats. We were accompanied by a marching band and given a police escort through the streets of New Orleans. As you can see in the following image, the floats were stocked with plenty of beads to toss to the revelers on the streets:
We ultimately arrived at the venue and were treated to a high energy set by New Orleans’s own Bag of Donuts, who play an impressive mix of music from the 50′s up through current hits. We will say it here for posterity: that singer plays a mean cowbell!
We had certainly come to expect the unexpected, as interesting characters seemed to appear out of the woodwork in New Orleans, but we had never quite encountered the likes of this individual, who prowled about the venue all night:
As day two of the conference began, the exhibit floor again had its own surprise cast of characters, including this very tall gentleman:
It was another day of talking with customers and colleagues and handing out copious amount of HostGator t-shirts and plush Snappys. Once the convention floor wrapped up, we found ourselves at the House of Blues for the closing ceremonies. The food was amazing and the drinks flowed into the night:
As morning arrived, it was the time to say our goodbyes and call it a wrap on the 2013 cPanel conference. We then saw this sign, reminding us that we’ll be doing it all again next year, back in the hometown shared by HostGator and cPanel:
Thanks again to our friends at cPanel! We’ll see you next year!
To see more behind-the-scenes pictures, please visit our Instagram page.
Written by Sean Valant
Wednesday, October 17th, 2012
This year’s annual cPanel conference was held October 8-10 in Houston, Texas. Being that Houston is home base for HostGator, there were many Gators prowling about the conference. An excellent time was had by all, from the exhibitor floor and the myriad of speakers to the daily meals and nightly outings and events. You will be hard pressed to find a conference that can top cPanel’s; they do it right!
The festivities kicked off with a dueling piano show at local nightspot Howl at the Moon. Howl at the Moon is quite an experience on any given night, and the cPanel party was no exception. Songs and drinks flowed freely, the open bar may have had something to do with that, and the dueling pianists did an excellent job of taking requests from the crowd and otherwise playing hit after hit:
Keeping in mind that all of this happened before the doors had actually opened on the conference, one of the highlights of the evening would have to be the spontaneous on-stage “Gangnam Style” group dance. This pic simply doesn’t do the actual event justice, but shall nonetheless be shared here for posterity’s sake:
The first day of the actual conference found Snappy wandering around the exhibition floor and posing for pictures with conference revellers, including Bluehost founder / BetterLinux CEO / all-around ping pong champion Matt Heaton:
Matt actually had a standing offer at the BetterLinux booth; anyone who beat him at ping pong won a laptop. It can pretty much go without saying that no one was able to win that laptop. Here’s Matt taking on one of our very own Admin Supervisors:
Snappy somehow snuck away long enough to play some Guitar Hero in the conference arcade, conveniently located right next to the HostGator booth.
Speaking of the HostGator booth, here’s Brian and Joe holding down the fort:
Those white squares you see on the big Snappy there aren’t bandaids. They’re actually QR code stickers that were related to a convention activity. Have no fear, Snappy didn’t cut himself shaving or get into a fight with any other mascots or anything like that; he was simply participating in the festivities.
We had a great time meeting everyone, talking and handing out HostGator items like the adorable and somewhat infamous plushie Snappys as well as the smaller, squishy stress-ball Snappys. Regarding those stress-ball Snappys, we happened to come across a rather interesting one. Now, we aren’t trying to alarm anyone with talk of an impending zombie apocalypse, however we did find this one Snappy that was, well, slightly different than all the other Snappys:
As day one of the conference wound down, we all prepared for the second night out with our fellow conference attendees. The venue for night number two was a club called Roak. Once again an excellent time was had by all. Roak is an indoor-outdoor club; inside featured a live band, the Spazmatics:
The outdoor section of Roak has a swimming pool, which you can see there in the middle of the picture below. At one point, a couple of conference attendees did go ahead and take the plunge, actually jumping into the pool.
Towards the end of the night, quite a few folks found their way onto the stage, joining the band for their final encore:
The next morning found us back on the conference floor, bright and early. Snappy, being an ever-popular Gator, wound up hanging out at various other booths on day two. It seemed anywhere we went in the exhibit hall, there was a Snappy in view. Here’s Snappy at the BetterLinux booth:
And here’s Snappy sitting pretty at the ServerHub booth, who were our very kind neighbors for the duration of the conference:
Before it was all said and done, Snappy even found time to get in a game of ping pong. And no, he didn’t win the laptop:
As the conference began winding down, we couldn’t help but to reflect on the entire experience and what exactly it all meant. Yes, cPanel throws an excellent conference and we’re already looking forward to next year’s in New Orleans. Yes, Houston is a great party town with a vivid nightlife. Yes, our industry is exciting and any time we come together will undoubtedly be good times. But how exactly to sum all of that up? Well, I think this picture essentially does exactly that:
We simply cannot conclude this blog post without sending an enormous thank you in particular to cPanel, but also to every single person we interacted with at the conference. We hope you all had as good of time as we did. See you next year!
To see even more pictures from the conference and the nightly parties, check out our official Flickr photostream.
Written by Sean Valant
Tuesday, August 7th, 2012
One of the great things about the web-hosting industry is the rather fortunate circumstance of virtually constant growth. More and more people are taking their lives or businesses online every day. Additionally, those already online are often ever-expanding their online presence. A direct result of that is the necessity for us, as one of the leading providers of web hosting, to locate and hire more and more qualified people to support all of the above. This is certainly a great opportunity, but it can also be somewhat problematic.
Although it would be great if a never-ending stream of qualified individuals would parade through our office doors each day, that simply isn’t the reality. We have a recruiting department which endeavors to locate people with the correct skills to join us here at The Gator in a variety of available positions. We often need to dispatch a highly-trained SWAT team of sorts from the swamp here out into the real world in hopes of returning to the fold with some new potential Gators.
Often the missions these aforementioned SWAT(swamp?) teams find themselves at are recruitment events of sorts. Armed with a very nice tablecloth and often some nice HostGator swag to give out, they go forth into the world in search of qualified candidates:
At a recent event, there were HostGator koozies and squishy stress-relief Snappys to be had by anyone able to correctly guess the number of “Gator Eyes” hermetically sealed within a state-of-the-art containment device (hint: there were 499):
Another obstacle faced by those who came face-to-face with our recruiters was the much-dreaded “Gator Replication Station,” whereby the hopefuls endeavored to create gators of their own using the materials provided. Those who successfully replicated gators in the most creative way won HostGator t-shirts and plush Snappys:
Certainly the goal is to locate and hire new Gators, but we do try to have as much fun at these events as possible. The moral of the story though is that we are always on the lookout for new Gators and invite you to apply to come work with us!
HostGator is a great place to work, with many official (and unofficial) perks aside from those indicated on the website. For example, on the day this blog was written, we had mobile masseuses roaming the office providing free massages to everyone at their desks while they worked.
We certainly appreciate the opportunity to hire individuals with some web-hosting experience, it’s true that the basics of what one needs to know to break into this industry are rather minimal and can be learned by virtually anyone. Even if you are a complete novice, Google will be happy to teach you about FTP, Email Clients (SMTP, POP3, IMAP), DNS (MX, CNAME, A RECORD) and basic troubleshooting (ping, trace route). Also, if you have an aptitude or experience providing excellent customer service, then you’re halfway there!
Consider a career with HostGator; we’d like to hear from you!
Written by Josh Loe
Friday, October 1st, 2010
We have all known someone in our lives, either close friends, or family who has suffered from some form of cancer. AstraZeneca, which manufactures breast cancer drugs Arimidex and Tamoxifen, founded the National Breast Cancer Awareness Month in 1985. The aim of the NBCAM from the start has been to promote mammography as the most effective weapon in the fight against breast cancer.
HostGator.com is proud to announce it will be participating in Breast Cancer Awareness Month this year by turning “Snappy The Gator” pink on our website. We have also setup a special coupon code “PINK”, the coupon code will allow 20% off the first month of any hosting account we offer and we will donate the first month from every signup that uses this code to breast cancer research. …