Server upgrade sometime soon. Ish.

 

Evening, long-timers. Gamegrene is old. The software is old and the server it lives on is even older. I'm faced with the choice of having to mothball the entire site (wherein I'd provide a standalone archive of it, for anyone to download and keep for their own posterity's sake) or figure out how to migrate it to software five or six years newer than it is expected to run on. For now, I'm moving forward with "figuring out how to migrate it" to a new server and new software.

This won't be without peril, solely because:

  • I don't really have the time to do it.
  • I don't have a huge amount of desire to make it pixel-perfect or exact.
  • It's not going to be a clean conversion. Things are gonna break or be lost. (Polls, methinks, most predominantly).
  • It will probably look like a "default theme" for a while, solely cos I'm not planning to spend a lot of effort retheming it.

Still, it's something I'm fixin' to do. Just throwin' it out there to the few still listening.

Still haven't played a tabletop RPG in a number of years. Heavy into boardgames though... Any interest in reading about that?

(If you're seeing this notice, nothing has visually changed, and there's no other Site Notices, the upgrade hasn't happen yet.)

Thanks for the update.

Despite the tiny size of the community here, I'm delighted that Gamegrene continues to putter along with the occasional discussion thread, and that you're thinking about its future. Gamegrene opened up a whole new world of RPG possibilities to me when I found it over 10 years ago, and I'd hate to see it go away.

I'm also very deep ("obsessed" is probably the word most folks would use) into boardgames, and would love to read and chat with any fellow 'greners who are interested in that side of tabletop gaming.

I too am still interested in the site. Sure, there is not a lot of traffic, but it is full of wonderful people and ideas. I am interested in board games as well. Is the "read" counter accurate? I would say that there are a lot of lurkers... and not just the gherkin-kind.

I understand the pain of migrating old code onto a new webserver stack. Things do break. I'll keep everything crossed for this much-loved old site to survive the transition. I hope it'll still be a slightly festering shade of green....but while I'm at it Morbus thanks for keeping this place alive at all.

+1 for some board game talk. I've kind of gone the other way over time, gravitating more towards RPG. I used to play boardgames more often; wargaming also. I only have time to focus on one of those activities now. But I do manage the occasional game of Carcassonne. I have two main game sets and quite a few of the expansions.

I'd like to think the article read counts are largely due to lurkers but many of those hits could be robots. Or maybe people clicking through on a search engine hit and leaving a few seconds later when they decide this wasn't what they were looking for. I imagine a few lurkers might stop for a while and read something but to respond they need a site login and many people nowadays expect to be able to comment via their logins on Facebook, Twitter or Disqus.

@Lorthyne and @Gilgamesh: any thoughts on writing about board games? I've always treated Gamegrene as "not just an RPG site", and the thought of porting it to the newest software has made me wonder if I should attempt writing or accepting articles again. Back in the ancient times, I even wrote some computer game reviews for it (though I'm not hugely interested in doing that again). I wonder, though, if "board game articles" even stand a chance in relation to strong sites already in the mix like BoardGameGeek, The Dice Tower, and so forth. I should probably do some research to see what types of "RPG articles" sites exist nowadays too.

@Gilgamesh: The read counter is indiscriminate and counts non-unique page views. Search engines, refreshing the page manually, etc., will all increase the count. And though there is some kick to seeing a high number, I don't think it's a very accurate number anymore. I would not seek to retain it in the newest software, preferring instead some sort of "Like" system which would accurately measure engagement.

@lurkinggherkin: Aye, whatever theme I intend to go with, the green palette will remain. I'd almost consider it brand identity.

I have, too, thought of moving things over to Disqus for comments, but the bigger problem there would be all the old comments on all the old posts. For those, I'd have to retain the "old comment system" on the page, lock those comments, then have the Discus stuff in place above them as the "new comment system". I'm not adverse to doing that. The main thing stopping me from implementing Disqus, Facebook, et. al. in the past has been the lack of "control" over the data. I want my own backups, my own exports, my own ability to keep things running for, man alive, 17 years now last month?

We're old.

Ran the first migration attempt, and polls and forums weren't migrated. Le sigh.

Notes to self:

Looks like I'm going to do it all manually. Not a fan of the migration process as currently written, and I'd have to wait for bugs to be fixed.

I knew I should check in more often. Glad to see you're trying to migrate, but I know how rough that can be. Also a +1 for board games. I'm still managing to follow the sweet siren song of RPGs, but I'm also very heavy into board games. At the very least, a discussion of them with Gamegreners might provide interesting views on the topic.

A very late comment on the subject of Disqus: It's a convenient service, but I do know that it's vulnerable to hacking, which some sites I frequent fell victim to. As a result they scrubbed everything down and reverted back to a sign in to comment based deal. And I definitely understand the want to have control over the login data, etc. In my mind, it is far more secure that way, to have and know where all the working parts are.

Regarding comments:

I am likely either going to a) add Facebook logins, or b) add reCAPTCHA and open them up to anonymous again.