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  1. #1
    Retro Addict Administrator
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    Burger Time Champion, Sonic Champion Harrison's Avatar
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    Future of classicamiga

    I know I've mentioned many ideas and plans for the future of this forum and the main site, but just haven't had the time to progress with them.

    Back in the first few years we managed to create a popular Amiga forum with loads of activity. At that time there was a big buzz around Amiga communities that attracted loads of interest. But as time has gone on its dropped right off. We still get a lot of visitors every days, including a few members who just read and never post, but really this has just become a long time internet friends forum. I'm ok with that and I'm not going to end the forum any time soon.

    But what about the future of Classicamiga? The main site has been in maintenance mode for a very long time as I don't have the time to work on it and no menbers have added any new content in a long time. It is running on a very old version of Joopla and would need a complete remake to bring it up to date. I would love to do that, but know I don't have the time. It's also reliant on very old out of date web technology including very old versions of php and mysql. I already have to pay extra to continue support for these so the site keeps running. So I might start looking for alternative hosting, possible a cloud server, where I can move the main site and it can just run on a very old setup for the moment. It does still get a lot of vistors every day so is being used, so I Woodhorn want to close it.

    As for the forum. Again it is still running on a very old version of vBulletin. And from last years attempts on Amibay to upgrade to vBulletin 5 I know the newer version of our forum software is a useless waste of time. So I will have to find the time at some point to migrate this forum to Xenforo. That's a must, more than just because we can.

    My question is, what could we do with these forums? Any idea on how we could attract new menbers or bring back old ones? I'm open to any suggestions.

    Do we just invite everyone back who's still registered once I migrate the forums? Or do we need to create something new to attact them to stay?

    If you haven't played a classic game in years, it's never too late to start!


  2. #2
    Burn! Hot Blooded Rhythm Soul! Staff Moderator
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    I'm happy to make a calendar of naked pics, that would bring in the female Amiga fans AND raise heaps of cash.

  3. #3
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    Burger Time Champion, Sonic Champion Harrison's Avatar
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    we are quite short of female members already in the Amiga world, so I would rather not try to scare them away!

    If you haven't played a classic game in years, it's never too late to start!


  4. #4
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    Wouldn't it be better to migrate Forums for all?

    At least giving them a chance to respond to their last logged Email address with the 0ld site. - Email all members informing of the update. - After all, you're just changing the way the site looks. The Web Hosting still stays the same... Yes?

    & why kill your membership "number count" just for a site upgrade?

    Fresh start??
    Last edited by Kin Hell; 24th July 2023 at 20:05.
    Getting 0ld0r is mandatory - Growing up is just an option.

  5. #5
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    I think you misunderstand. I'm not removing any existing members, and the forums will be migrated fully as is to the new software when I do it. But it will change because of the new software obviously. But is that enough to entice old members back?

    If you haven't played a classic game in years, it's never too late to start!


  6. #6
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    If the main site doesn't get updated much, would it be better to make everything into static pages, that way, there are no security issues and no old software to maintain. The old (early 2000s) site was very well designed and easy to use so I expect something similar wouldn't be too hard to make.

    As for the forums, we did have a completely fresh start back in the mid 2000s, and of course, all these years later, Invisionfree is no more. I can't see any reason why the current forum cannot be migrated to something else. I'm not too familiar with Xenforo (is that the fork of vBulletin?). A lot of people seem to like SMF these days; it is quite nice as an end user, but I've no idea if you can migrate a vBulletin database to it. Is phpBB still developed?

  7. #7
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    It would be impossible to turn the main site into static pages. The whole site is dynanically generated from a database and there are a lot of entries in the game and demo databases. I forget the total but its over 3000 total pages.

    The best solution would be to write some code that could pull the directory pages table entries from the existing site and populate the data in a new site running more up to date software. That is something I would love to do. I built the existing site when I had a lot of spare time and learnt a whole new coding language built within the Jreviews Joomla software specifically for this reason. I worked withthe creator and developer of JReviews to create the site directories. I was helping him develop his software as I was using it to make the site and he was impressed what I managed to do with the software. I achieved far more then he ever thought the software could do. But then as I'd been working in new media production for years I had learnt to push a language or software system to I'd limit or to work around limitations. Something I've always found fun to do.

    Anyway, it would be a big project fully move the content of the current main site to a new platform. Might even be easier just to start again and build a new site and then manually repopular the entries. But not any time soon.

    As for forums, SMF, phpBB and any other free forums are but an option. In being free and open source they are not aecure and only ok for small starting forums.

    Xenforo is the best commercial forum platform after I did an extensive test of them all and ac more of research. Xe foro is build by the developers who originally created vBulletin. When vBulletin was taken over during vBulletin 4 years some of the original people on the project didn't like the direction it was heading and left. And they were right. vBulletin 5 is horrible. These people who left wanted to create their vision of that they wanted the next vBulletin to be and created XenForo.

    You can see and feel similar ideas in many aspects of Xnmenforo, but it's far more elegantly coded and the UI is far more up to date and cleaner. Most importantly. Most of the mod and plugin devs from vBulletin left after vBulletin 5 turned out to be a mess. They are all now developing addons and mods for Xenforo instead.

    If you haven't played a classic game in years, it's never too late to start!


  8. #8
    ELITE Kin Hell's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harrison View Post
    <snip>
    Any idea on how we could attract new menbers or bring back old ones? I'm open to any suggestions.
    Menbers!?

    Quote Originally Posted by Harrison View Post
    Do we just invite everyone back who's still registered once I migrate the forums? Or do we need to create something new to attRact them to stay?
    What was there to mis-understand?

    Your mis-spelling of attract or....

    Quote Originally Posted by Harrison View Post
    "Do we just invite everyone back who's still registered once I migrate the forums?"
    Maybe i'm missing something here!?
    Getting 0ld0r is mandatory - Growing up is just an option.

  9. #9
    Burn! Hot Blooded Rhythm Soul! Staff Moderator
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    Some of the old regulars drifted away such a long time ago, makes me wonder sometimes if they are still around, if they even use that email address, how they've been etc.

    I think a nudge to encourage them to come take a look again would be a good idea, but there'd need to be some hot chat of new things to keep them from simply taking a glance for two seconds and then drifting away again.

    As for software and stuff, I simply have no idea so can't really have any qualified input there. I however do think a simplified style would be beneficial.

  10. #10
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    I've decided the first thing to do is get the forums migrated to the new Xenforo forum software. Once that's done we can tinker with it and have a play around with what it can do and try some plugins out.

    I agree a simplified and cleaner look might be good if possible. Also merging some of the subforums down might be good too.

    Then once happy and it's looking and working well I will send out a message to all older members to see if they want to visit again. But before that I might reach out to specific people who might be interested in generating content for the site before older members take a look.

    I have many ideas but as the forum software needs to be done anyway that's the first step. We can think forward more once that's done.

    Will be starting planning this coming Autumn. I was going to say once the weather is worse but here in the UK it's really bad the last 2 weeks with heavy rain. 

    If you haven't played a classic game in years, it's never too late to start!


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