They were the first machines to be called bicycles. Although they are now most commonly known as “penny-farthings”, this term was probably not used until they were nearly outdated; the first recorded print reference is 1891 in Bicycling News. It comes from the British penny and farthing coins, one much larger than the other, so that the side view resembles a penny leading a farthing. Why am I writing about penny-farthings? I’m attempting to build an analogy as to where I think the development of this website is in relation to where I’d like it to be. Since the last time I wrote about the state of Cycle the Earth, we’ve implemented a new theme, grown the MTB Race catalog while adding search & sorting capability, added the Bike Blog Hub which is intended to be a portal to the universe of bike blogging, added additional social sharing links (rss feed, flickr and digg) and added a couple of posts one of which demonstrated the power of Facebook. The “La Ruta to determine the Toughest Mountain Biker?” post has gotten close to 450 views in a week due to what I suspect the number of likes it has generated. 450 is a lot in relative comparison to the activity I’ve seen since inception. I mentioned that I’ve changed the theme. After much research I’ve decided to go with Catalyst due to it’s flexibility and customization options. The look and feel of the site will still evolve over time now that I’m confident it is built in the best possible theme framework. I welcome feedback to make this site better for the community we are trying to create. A Penny Farthing for your thoughts?