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Site devel roadmap

Here's a quick overview on what will (propably) be done regarding the site
in the (nearer) future:

(1) Content

1) Articles: As soon as the authors have created their user accounts their
articles can be uploaded. This doesn't take much time and thus it's no

2) Code snippets: I saw that SourceForge has a very good collection of
these, so it's IMHO better if we just link to them instead of maintaining
our own set. Comments?

3) Static Pages: The "project history" and "supporters" pages aren't up
yet, and the existing ones (mainly "goals" and "maintainers") need some
cleanup. Not much work, but not high priority either IMHO.

4) External Articles: We don't have a good system for handling links to
interesting articles written elsewhere. That's a rather important thing to
have though, so it should be adressed relatively soon. It's not *that* easy
though, and I'd like to wait with it at least until the site code does a
better job of handling categories/subcategories.

5) Projects-looking-for-Developers: A place where young projects can
present themselves in order to attract developers (and perhaps also the
other way round). That's a bit tricky to do right, and IMO not very urgent,
as the traditional methods for attracting developers (having multiple
freshmeat announcements per hour, having a good homepage, producing working
code etc) still apply. => low priority

6) Library database: more detailed info on game libraries, plus easy ways
to compare them. Erik is working on that, but he doesn't have much time.
Anyway, as soon as the code works, maintenance shouldn't be that much work
anymore, as each library entry can have its own maintainer.

7) GPotM, GLotM: Game Project of the Month, Game Library of the Month.
Plans for these are quite detailed, and setting things up shouldn't be much
work, but maintenance requires much time. No volunteers yet. Perhaps we
should post the plans on the site, in hope that someone steps in...

Note: There were plans to move parts of the above to "subprojects", i.e.
lib database & GLotM to PPlay and the game projects & GPotM to LGB. I'm not
sure anymore whether this is really a good idea. Must think about it.

(2) PHP Code

1) Category system: Currently category handling is rather crude. Either
there are no subcategories at all (resources, news) or subcats are just
stored as freeform text, without checking for valid values and without
further evaluation e.g. in the display code. I'm working on a new system,
but there are still a few (conceptual) problems.

2) Forum: The code for web-based discussion (we're using Phorum) is there,
but it isn't integrated into the site yet. I'll look at this soon, but
some parts of that are most likely of the tricky sort, so don't speculate
on a date yet.

3) Search: In the top-right corner of the pages should be a "search" button
linking to sunsite's search engine. Paul knows how to do this, and I guess
he'll look into it right when he has some time again.

4) Item display: The display code for resource items, article overviews etc
needs some polishing. Not high priority, but not difficult either.

5) Rewrite: The site code needs a rewrite. It isn't
generic/modular/extensible/customizable etc enough. Code reuse is done via
copy-paste-modify for many parts. Display code is spread all over the source
files and page layout/design are hardcoded into it, making things like
printer-friendly views rather difficult (or at least ugly). Etcetc.
I do *not* have the time to do this now (we have ~150kB PHP code right now).
Maybe I'll be able to work on it on the side, slowly, but I'm not sure. So
this is quite a bit off.

6) Functionality improvements: Things like optional get-newsitems-via-mail
for registered users, switchable layouts
(normal/lightHTML/printerfriendly), optimization (precalculated pages,
caching of frequent query results etc) etc.
Starting with this before the code is rewritten would be a nonsense. Well,
you get the picture.

Ok, as you see there's plenty to do. Paul and I will only be able to do
parts of it, so we rely on help from you (response hasn't been exactly
*cough* overwhelming yet...)

Christian Reiniger
Coordinator/Coder, PenguinPlay (http://sunsite.auc.dk/penguinplay/)
Coordinator,       LGDC        (http://sunsite.auc.dk/lgdc/)

Drive C: not found (A)bort (R)etry (P)arty because you have Linux installed

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