The last update post was something along the lines of “it’s been a long time since we posted, but here’s a description all the great work we’ve been doing”. I wish I could say the same thing now, but instead I have to explain why we’ve been pretty much silent since the beginning of the year.
As some of you know, I left my job last summer to start Warhorn LLC with Finn and begin the Warhorn 2e project. The plan was to spend my full time on that until I could no longer afford to work without compensation, at which I’d have to go back out into the world, find a job, and transition Warhorn to a nights-and-weekends project. (Luckily Finn has a number of balls in the air with regard to business ventures and doesn’t have the same kind of either-or prospect.)
As work progressed, it became clear that in order to solve the major technical problems with the current site, update the interface to modern standards, and add some features that would collectively make 2e compelling enough for subscribers to give us a few bucks a month, the project was going to take a lot more time than I had available given the available funding. It basically came down to me having until the middle of January to get as much done as possible. Around the time that I wrote that last update post, I started sending out resumes and interviewing. One thing led to another, and February 1 was my first day on the job at Outside.in – in New York City.
So that’s what I’ve been doing for the past few months – moving from San Francisco to Brooklyn, starting a new job, busting ass on an important, highly visible project for my new employer, and getting settled in my new house and life. And back in the Bay Area, Finn’s been working on other projects that keep him out of the poorhouse.
Things have settled down a fair amount since I first got to NY though, and we’re both itching to get the Warhorn train going again. To get back into the swing of things, I’ve been putting some effort into addressing a few nagging issues that have plagued the current site:
- The hardware that hosts the site has been upgraded and some components reconfigured to minimize the instances of downtime that had been getting more frequent in the past few weeks. The periods of downtime were due to some inefficient resource usage caused by fundamental architectural problems with the 10-year old site. With the recent changes, I expect these instances to diminish in frequency or disappear altogether.
- The site request form has been redesigned to be easier to use and to address a number of frequently asked questions. I’m particularly happy that I was able to get some date picker widgets in that form! Sadly it’s not so easy to get them into the event setup form …
- We now support traditional hyphenated event slugs. The slug is the part of the event site’s URL that uniquely identifies the event. For example, in the URL
http://warhorn.net/awesomecon-2010, the slug is
awesomecon-2010. We’ve used a number of slug styles in the past, from alllowercase to CamelCaps, but now that an obscure technical limitation has been removed, so we can hyphenate the words in the slug as is traditionally done in blog posts and news articles around the Web. I hope you’ll agree that this makes event URLs more legible and useful.
Now that’s all well and good, but what we really want is to get 2e out there for you all to use, even if only an early version that is a preview of things to come from which we can get wider feedback. We’re firing things back up this week and should start to see progress again quickly.
Furthermore, we’ve done a pretty poor job of communicating with you all. We promise to do better, with more frequent and detailed updates, so that you have a sense of what we’re doing on a week-to-week basis. As we begin to build momentum again, we want you to feel it and get excited to see us driving toward a goal. Part of this will be using the right tools to connect with you. Our main home is here at our blog, but we’re also on Twitter and Facebook and over at the Wizards community site. Follow, fan or subscribe so that you get the latest updates, but also please take the opportunity to let us know how you feel about Warhorn and 2e, and shoot us any and all questions.
We’re excited about the new phase of development on 2e, and we hope that y’all are too. Stay tuned for updates. Thanks for your support!