Amount

An update from me

28 Apr 2022 14:08 #73927 by fats
An update from me was created by fats
Hi all,

I wanted to give you an update on what has been happening to the site over the last few months, most of you will be aware of the failed update of the site that I did earlier in the year, since that time I have been working on updating the site to work with PHP 8+ well the work has not been going well, in fact, it's been a total nightmare, so with that in mind I have decided to abandon Joomla 3.5 and switch the site to Joomla 4 and rebuild the site around that, I don't know when I will have that completed, but I'm hoping at some time around July, some of the things that you will need to be aware off is that the site appearance will change, this template is not compatible with J4 so I will need to look at an alternative, the masthead might be changing as well, but that is something that I will need to think about. 

I know that there are some usability issues with the site, I'm hoping no that's wrong, I'm expecting that the usability of the site will improve, the menu will be given an overhaul and the way the library search will work will as well.  

I want people to tell me in this thread anything else that they want to see fixed or improved or even a new feature that they want to see, this is the best time to tell me what you want as with developing the new site I can add the features that you want.

Lastly, I would like to update you on my health, as some of you know I had the OG version of Covid and have suffered from Long-Covid so it has meant love the last 18 months or so I have not had the energy to do anything, sleeping 18 hours per day is not fun and not that the drugs are starting to work I'm happy to say that I'm coming through the worst of it hence my commitment to getting this site sorted.

So with all that please let me know below what you want and let's see what SWM is going to evolve into.

Love from me to you

Fats 
The following user(s) said Thank You: lfan, Sarge395, freeLancer, ahp19, shadar, steelknight3000, AlbertC, Woodclaw, Raa, slim36, kshoo, Ravens_ghost, rednecko, Starfurys483, sgiwy, Markiehoe, CANNNNIS, MatrixSimon1, Slim0926, schera_zard and 11 other people also said thanks.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

  • fats
  • fats's Avatar Topic Author
  • Offline
  • Administrator
  • Administrator
More
28 Apr 2022 19:27 #73935 by veggicidal
Replied by veggicidal on topic An update from me
Take care of yourself!
The following user(s) said Thank You: Markiehoe

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
28 Apr 2022 20:29 #73936 by CANNNNIS
Replied by CANNNNIS on topic An update from me
Take care.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
28 Apr 2022 20:46 #73937 by Monty
Replied by Monty on topic An update from me
Take it easy and take care Fats.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

  • Monty
  • Monty's Avatar
  • Away
  • Platinum Member
  • Platinum Member
More
29 Apr 2022 00:25 #73940 by AUphoric
Replied by AUphoric on topic An update from me
As a new user (with stories in the queue but not published yet), I thank you for the site! It's a delight to have found a community that shares the fun of imaginative storytelling and conversation around the Superwomen theme.

I also had a very rough time with CV19. It sounds like my long term trudge back to full health is not quite as bad as yours. But enough so I can empathize!

I have a background in software engineering. It's a while since I've been deep in code, and I'm not up to speed on the latest stack you're using. But I do remember a lot of principles, and some details. If it would help to bounce ideas off of someone regarding your upgrade plan, please feel free to do so.

I'm curious about the need to switch to Joomla 4 and PHP 8 at the same time. It looks like J4 continues to work fine with PHP 7. I understand that some things would be a bit simpler and snazzier to write in PHP 8. (Like using enumerations, match expression, mixed type, attributes, for code dealing with batches of stuff like a review cycle, status flags, etc.) . But it also looks like you could do the J3 to J4 upgrade first. Only after J4 is stable, switch to PHP 8. Changing both at the same time looks like a bigger, more complicated project.

As a new user, there's nothing about whatever seems old and klunky to you that's put me off from signing up and participating. The user experience could be streamlined, sure, just as everything could be tidied up anywhere. But in my own opinion, I don't think you're losing potential users based on how the site works now.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
29 Apr 2022 00:43 #73941 by Markiehoe
Replied by Markiehoe on topic An update from me
Take Care Fats!

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

  • Markiehoe
  • Markiehoe's Avatar
  • Away
  • Platinum Member
  • Platinum Member
More
29 Apr 2022 01:46 #73942 by YAGS
Replied by YAGS on topic An update from me
Feel better.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
30 Apr 2022 01:51 #73963 by fats
Replied by fats on topic An update from me

As a new user (with stories in the queue but not published yet), I thank you for the site! It's a delight to have found a community that shares the fun of imaginative storytelling and conversation around the Superwomen theme.

I also had a very rough time with CV19. It sounds like my long term trudge back to full health is not quite as bad as yours. But enough so I can empathize!

I have a background in software engineering. It's a while since I've been deep in code, and I'm not up to speed on the latest stack you're using. But I do remember a lot of principles, and some details. If it would help to bounce ideas off of someone regarding your upgrade plan, please feel free to do so.

I'm curious about the need to switch to Joomla 4 and PHP 8 at the same time. It looks like J4 continues to work fine with PHP 7. I understand that some things would be a bit simpler and snazzier to write in PHP 8. (Like using enumerations, match expression, mixed type, attributes, for code dealing with batches of stuff like a review cycle, status flags, etc.) . But it also looks like you could do the J3 to J4 upgrade first. Only after J4 is stable, switch to PHP 8. Changing both at the same time looks like a bigger, more complicated project.

As a new user, there's nothing about whatever seems old and klunky to you that's put me off from signing up and participating. The user experience could be streamlined, sure, just as everything could be tidied up anywhere. But in my own opinion, I don't think you're losing potential users based on how the site works now.
 
to let you and other members understand my thinking it would make it easier if I gave some background, way back in I think it was 2010 lfan wanted to improve the site from what it was, a PHP forum and a directory of text files that made up the library, he wanted a way for users to be able to submit stories themselves, I sent a pm with the simple statement "why not try a CMS"

we talked and I offered to develop a site based on Joomla 1.5, after about 2 months of development I had something ready to show him, he liked it and then I upaded it to the hostgator server we were using at the time and boom SWM v1.5 was in play, we had invaluable help from members in getting some content posted and special thanks has to go out to njae for getting the library sorted out in the beginning and for woodclaw who helped and eventually took over the running of the library, and over the years since the site has evolved with features and ideas that come from th excellent member R5 who developed the tracker and other cool stuff, it has been a challenge over the years to get the site maintained, we've moved to a VPS to ebale us to run the site without the limits of the shared host, we have moved from joomla 1.5 to 2.5 then onto the current version of 3.10.8 we've had blogging software installed and removed with its need diminish and instant messaging come and go, there has been a lot of coming and going over years.

Something that I did not mention is that during the years we've been on the VPS we have hosted other sites and even ran an email server on the server as well as the main SWM, so it's been a lot of stuff going on int he background, one thing that I do as little as possible is; update the server software (onaverage every 2 years), we are currently on PHP v7.3.19 and this is where we are having the current issues, I've tested the current site with PHP 7.4 and v 8.1 and with both there is a incompatibility with the site that I've been trying to trace down, in my investigations it seems that some essential scripts have become out of date and there is no new updates that will work with the later versions of PHP, so i took the decision to stop trying to develop the current site and rebuild SWM from the ground up using php8 and joomla 4, it's a big taste but it's easier to do that, than to try to spend more time hunting for the out of date scripts and make them work.

after having a chat with lfan, i put forward as part of the site redevelopment is that i look at creating sub sites for different literery universes, so we could have one for AU for example, we could have the dead writers universe for the writers who are no longer with us, there are lots of possibilities that we could look at in the new direction for SWM, one thing that i will reinstate is the image libraries, it's something that I've been putting off for years.

I've started a new instance on my dev server to look at the new ideas that i came up with and to see what the challenges there are, it's going to be an exciting period.

Fats

 

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

  • fats
  • fats's Avatar Topic Author
  • Offline
  • Administrator
  • Administrator
More
30 Apr 2022 02:09 #73965 by Clontarf8891a2
Replied by Clontarf8891a2 on topic An update from me
Feel better and thanks for all you do!

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
30 Apr 2022 03:33 #73967 by AUphoric
Replied by AUphoric on topic An update from me
"so it's been a lot of stuff going on in the background"
Uh oh! That's when it gets dangerously complicated...

This image is hidden for guests.
Please log in or register to see it.



It does make sense to port to the newer version of everything, rather than try to sort thru and polish some broken scripts.
Have you been able to track down which particular modules are involved?

I happen to like the way that the Library includes many different types of stories. Seems like tags could identify different story groups. But then, there's obviously a history to what the community is looking for, that's all new to me.

Thank you for the explanation.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
30 Apr 2022 06:30 #73971 by freeLancer
Replied by freeLancer on topic An update from me
Hope you recover from the long term effects. Take care of yourself before anything else. Thanks for all that you do to keep the site going. I never had COVID but consider alternative medicine to compliment and deal with symptoms.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
30 Apr 2022 22:22 #73980 by Bully_pup
Replied by Bully_pup on topic An update from me
Hang in there man.  No matter how long it takes, prayers for a full recovery. 

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
01 May 2022 07:57 #73982 by anonxyzus
Replied by anonxyzus on topic An update from me
I'd like to be able to sort the stories by date of submission, ascending and descending.
The following user(s) said Thank You: fats

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
01 May 2022 17:28 #73988 by jay_manus
Replied by jay_manus on topic An update from me
Jeez, Fats, you’ve had it tough. I’m amazed and full of gratitude that you managed to keep the site going through all that. There’s been a proliferation of other story hosting sites lately, but it’s a tribute to you and Woodclaw and LFan and the other tech contributors that SWM remains THE place to be for all things super-woman related. Think of the alternative: we’d all be posting and trying to keep up on multiple different places, and worse, we would not have a coherent community. So thanks for all your perseverance and dedication. 

I do have two small suggestions for improvement though: 1) offer better support for multi-story series. In particular it would be great to be able to finish reading one chapter and then click a button to hit the next in series. 2) better support for mobile users. The site works on mobile, but it’s not a great experience. For example, the menu tends to pop on and out when you’re scrolling through a story. 

Please keep up the great work, and here’s hoping for a full recovery soon. 
The following user(s) said Thank You: lfan, Sarge395, fats, AUphoric

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
01 May 2022 18:41 #73992 by AUphoric
Replied by AUphoric on topic An update from me
" In particular it would be great to be able to finish reading one chapter and then click a button to hit the next in series."

I'm curious to see this myself. I put my Part 2 into the review queue. At the top, I have a copy and paste of the URL for Part 1, but I don't know whether that's the right way to do it. Or if I'll need to edit Part 1 once Part 2 is published, to add the link at the bottom for readers to continue.
The following user(s) said Thank You: fats

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
02 May 2022 20:06 #74006 by tks
Replied by tks on topic An update from me
Wishing you a speedy recovery and thank you for all of your work here. TK

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
02 May 2022 21:49 #74008 by Rjjt456
Replied by Rjjt456 on topic An update from me
A few ideas for updates to the site:
1) Make it so the author of a story get notified when someone comments on their story. Unless you check it yourself, you won't know if someone made a comment.

2) No sure if this is a "Must Have" but consider adding a bottom that takes one to a random story on the site. That way people might find something that they have never seen before.

3) Ensure that notifications about PM actually is sent to you. I have it activated one mine, but I haven't gotten any this past week or so while I've written with someone here.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
02 May 2022 23:07 - 02 May 2022 23:07 #74013 by Random321
Replied by Random321 on topic An update from me
I hope your recovery continues and the issues you are still suffering from abate or go away entirely.

As for your request:  Having SWM continue to be a place to go to for original heroine fan long form content and interaction really is still a key to me.  This is still the (only) place to go.  I love that it is also a jumping off point for creators who have tested the water.

My number one wish is that the search in the library could search the story body not just the title or author name.

I think the main menu could be simplified to Forum, Library, and Audio.  I think Community, FAQ, and Cool Stuff could be merged into one menu item.I think we could improve on our search results.  It’s disappointing we are on page two for google for the search “superheroine forum” and I’m hoping we don’t lose possible fans to the purely peril side because of it.

I’ve liked how most image shares have moved to discord ~ even if not all of them there are for me.  I hope discord keeps its focus on heroines.  I do wish there was a way to have more crossover between the page and discord.  It’s seems counterintuitive that the webpage seems to have more interaction than discord – but here we are.  I don’t have a great idea on how to accomplish that.

If you pick a new styling please pay attention to how it behaves on a phone.

Thank-you for this place!
Last edit: 02 May 2022 23:07 by Random321.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
02 May 2022 23:40 #74015 by fats
Replied by fats on topic An update from me
ok, thanks for the requests, in no particular order, the next chapter button is there but does not work as it takes you to the next story in the library not the next the in the series,

sorting by date of submission is something that can be done.

the mobile experience will be better in the next version of the site as it will use a different framework for the template of the site so new functions as well as new layout options.

author notifications will be in place, will email do or would a pop up be better?

New PM system so I don't know what notification system they are using so I will have to check but again not a major problem.

Random story button I can test that today by adding something to the menu, some feedback on that would be helpful

Fats

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

  • fats
  • fats's Avatar Topic Author
  • Offline
  • Administrator
  • Administrator
More
03 May 2022 00:15 #74018 by Sarge395
Replied by Sarge395 on topic An update from me
How is the giant bank reserve doing that funds the site hosting and vodka for the admins?  

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

  • Sarge395
  • Sarge395's Avatar
  • Offline
  • Uberposter par Excellence
  • Uberposter par Excellence
More
03 May 2022 06:35 #74023 by Rjjt456
Replied by Rjjt456 on topic An update from me

author notifications will be in place, will email do or would a pop up be better?

 
Email would be fine, I think but I don’t know what you mean by Pop-up.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
03 May 2022 11:44 #74025 by lfan
Replied by lfan on topic An update from me
I think he means a pop up or modal window for notifications

elf

author notifications will be in place, will email do or would a pop up be better?


 
Email would be fine, I think but I don’t know what you mean by Pop-up.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Rjjt456

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

  • lfan
  • lfan's Avatar
  • Away
  • Administrator
  • Administrator
More
05 May 2022 20:06 #74059 by AUphoric
Replied by AUphoric on topic An update from me
Personally, I extremely dislike browser pop-ups. Ever since I started with the Web around 1992, with the one computer in the university library basement that was wired up, I've never yet seen any situation where it's clearly better to have an intrusive modal new window shoved into my face. Status messages can readily appear on a new page the user is redirected to, or be inserted inline in a different color to highlight that the task succeeded, or if they click the box to subscribe the user can get sent an email. I can't recall a single time in twenty years that I've said, "hooray, I'm so glad I got that in pop-in form instead of a more polite, respectful user interface."

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
Time to create page: 0.133 seconds