Hahaa! I made some tests.
I took the old pallokorva.org(the one you see now) and put it head to head to the newest development version running elsewhere in a speed competition where the major criteria for winning is: How long will it take after typing in the address before I can read the text content of the page. The results are shocking. Dare I even write them down.
For the sake of getting some actual difference between the two I throttled the 20Mbit/sec adsl line down to mimic an old 11kbps modem(Of course it doesn't do similar latencies, but at least they were consistent over all test runs.) and emptied all caches. The php side has not been optimized in the new version in any way, so it played no role in the results.
When running this old version of the site it took me almost exactly 8 minutes before I could start reading the content on the page. Before that I was able to enjoy first several minutes a blank white page and after that several minutes more a blank gray page. As a curiosity I thought I'd check how long it would take for the page to load fully and that was just slightly longer; 8.8 minutes.
Then after emptying the caches again and firing up the new developer version I was in for the real shock. I typed in the address and readied myself to wait for at least a minute, because I remember even the most simple pages take about that much at the time and age when I had a 33kbps. Six point four(6.4) fucking seconds and there it was. The whole page content before me save the styles and images. Another second and I got all the essential styles to read the page the way it should look. That starts to near the limiting factor of how much it takes for the php to render the page. The whole page took 1.5 minutes to load, but I'm not quite willing to buy into that, and will investigate if some script got left out or loaded from cache, but that 6.4 seconds was what mattered.
Now I know 11kbps loading times is not that relevant in the modern day, but at least in the rural backwaters(Any place not directly inside an earshot from the nearest town or city centre.) of our beloved Finland gprs speeds seem to rarely reach the promised 50kbps and I don't see anything interesting enough on this site that I would be ready to wait two to three minutes to skip reading.
The things I did to the code are
- From a book
- Well worth their own post which is due when I release the new code hopefully before May Day.