Time for our third, albeit slightly belated, community update!
In October, we...
As of 10th November, Waterfall has 26,832 users, 45,732 blogs, and 246,403 posts.
Things have slowed down on the new user front - that's to be expected, given we've not done any extra marketing lately and we've been slower with updates. We'll be remedying that soon!
Coming in the next week or so, depending on testing results, will be the tagging and queue overhauls. Ideally these'd be launched seperately, but practically, because the queue overhaul plays off the new tagging system and the tagging system would need to update posts already in the queue, they'll be released together instead.
Queues pose an interesting challenge, since the way they're stored is being changed entirely to how it really should have been in the first place if I didn't decide to implement the system in two hours at 3am. The three options are to delete everything in the queue, forcibly post everything that's in the queue, or move everything into the new system but set every blog's queue frequency to 0. We ended up picking the latter since no content is lost that way, and - as a sign that we need better documentation - a third of all posts in the queue are on blogs that have a queue frequency set to 0 anyway.
Setting every blog's queue frequency to 0 is likely to be the best option based on that, and then everyone can re-adjust their settings based on the new features.
We're not entirely sure if any other new features will make it into the next update, but we're hoping to get it out in the next few days. After that, there'll be a few QoL patches - options for disabling anon asks and allowing logged out users to send messages are one - before we add the next big feature, which will likely be the CM, at long last.
For the site's UI, we're still drafting the revised version and our designer is on vacation right now, so stay tuned for that!
We're also playing with some algorithms to improve blog recommendations. We're not sure which one we'll pick yet, but we've narrowed it down to four.
Oh right heads up: Next patch will start collecting your timezone at login/when you set your queue posting parameters to make sure the "post between x and y o'clock" stuff works properly
You'll also be able to manually set it, but just a heads up that it's a little more data we'll need to start storing on you
my entire fucking face when I find out i-am-a-fish has a patreon and people are actually giving them a hundred fucking dollars for running that blog
my entire fucking inferiority complex when we never even broke 20 bucks a month on patreon for running the entirety of waterfall
Might have to roll the queue overhaul out at the same time as the tag overhaul becaause actually it turns out it'd be harder than it's worth to seperate them
I also want to keep up the illusion that this shit takes ages to do instead of me twatting about for 20 minutes and it being finished like Pillowfort and Tumblr do to justify their entry fee and ineptitude respectively
Next two overhauls will be Queue and tags
Tags is half written from the rewrite thankfully, we just gotta slide it in and do a conversion on what we already have. Queues shouldn't be too difficult to do either. The real question is, will I remember to do one of them when I wake up?
Queues and tags will probably come at the same time because HHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH
I also need to figure out how to get stuff currently in the queue over to the new system...
About 1/3 of posts currently in the queue are on blogs with a queue frequency set to 0
Considering changing tack on development and going back to incremental updates. Probably easier and better to do than one giant rewrite, as well as having less downtime...
You COULD argue that this means I've written wasted code, but I'd disagree on that - it was at least a good learning experience, and most of what's written will be useful for the API as well, since that more or less requires the kind of code written there. Plus it'll eventually be on the main site anyway, it's just a bit much to do a full rewrite while I'm still the only staff member who can put more than half hour a day into the site.
Hey, sorry if you've answered this already, I didn't see it in your recent posts-
I'm not able to make a text post. Reblogging is working fine but for some reason it doesn't like an original post. Is it because I only used the title space and tags with no body text?
Don't quote me on this because I don't have the code in front of me to double check, but I THINK it checks that the actual text box itself has something in it before it'll let you post, so try that. If that works I'll see about doing a hotfix later to patch that out, but if it doesn't work I'll need to investigate because that's a bug.
It would be really cool if in the future you could make it possible to view photosets as you're getting ready to post them. Sometimes you don't know what order you want pics in until you see them and can swtich it all around
Planned for the rewrite! We're overhauling the whole user interface, and actually previewing and being able to adjust photosets is one of the features I have marked down as "will literally delay launch if it doesn't work properly".
I'm gonna work on getting video posts working today I think
In terms of added complexity from the current version, this is gonna be the biggest "upgrade"/complexity add
To elaborate a little on the new system:
The current way of handling videos is just "check if it's a video". Simple, lightweight. That causes a few problems when we have 100MB videos, and $10 subscribers afteer the rewrite launches will be able to upload 1GB videos. That's very bad for mobile users.
So the new system involves a minimum of four servers - the web server, the Raven Master node, a transcode server, and a storage server. First, the video is uploaded to the web server. The web server then contacts the Raven master to ask for a transcode server that's not busy at the minute. Raven Master replies, and then the Raven instance running on the web server uploads the video to the Raven instance running on the transcode server that Raven Master told it to use. That server then creates at least three qualities of the video, and MAYBE different formats too if we end up going that route. While it works through them it updates Raven Master about its progress so that the dashboard message saying "this is still processing" can give a rough percentage. When it's done, it asks Raven Master for storage info so it knows where to send the files - Raven then replies with where to send them (sometimes the videos will be all on the same server, sometimes not - when budget allows, we're aiming to have three copies of every file on different servers) and they get uploaded. When that's done, the servers all communicate, make sure the file uploaded properly, and if everything is gucci, the video is set to live.
Correction this is now This Week's project instead of Today's because I forgot a ton of stuff that's a pre-requisites
spent two days diagnosing why reblogs aren't working properly on the dev build (it was always setting the last-in-chain value to the post you reblogged rather than the last post with any content)
the answer: accidentally included a space in the textarea as a default value, so the content checker was picking that up and deciding that actually, there was content so the code WAS working, I'm just an idiot
First thing today is server maintenance because a disk died on me so I have to rebuild a RAID array but progress yesterday:
- raven can now provision a server and let the site know where it is and what its for
- can set up a server from scratch; it'll download and install all necesary software
Got mad at my servers, using my desktop as temporary emergency storage for all the VMs because SOMEBODY doesn't want to work properly
glares at my storage server
Also ended up retiring one of the hypervisors because I just. Can't get it to show any local storage
That's gonna be our new transcode server after I rip the SFP+ NIC out of it and slap the old 1080 Ti in there
Does make uptime a bit sketchy for the sites I host since it means actual downtime when the host needs updating but we can work with this for now
(Although, it does mean a short queue forming for transcodes when I need to update THAT machine, since it'll be... Windows based...)
Now I've got login, admin, and ban checking in... might take a break from Rewrite proper and work on Raven since it's turned into one of those technical challenges I adore
Kind of upset that everything I did today worked more or less first time
That's not right