Author Topic: Improving the FS2NetD website...  (Read 2058 times)

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Offline taylor

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Improving the FS2NetD website...
Are there any webdevs out there that wish to help come up with a new FS2NetD site for everyone?  I don't have the time to do the web site and the code side, so I really need one or more people to step and take care of the design, PHP coding, new artwork, and whatever else ends up being needed.

We have really outgrown what's there and I would like to expand on it quite a bit as well.  This will really just be for FS2NetD v.2, from 3.6.10, and the current site content will stay for v.1 and 3.6.9 builds.  Once 3.6.10 comes out the servers will get switched around and then the v.2 setup will be primary, so it would be nice to have a new site to go along with that as well.

Suggestions are welcome, if anyone has any requests.  My current list of wants for the site goes something like this:

  • More visually open design.  The current site is really cramped.  Simply something that makes full use of the browser window would be a good start.

  • Better mod support.  The current mod support is nice, but it would be even better if it had an entirely different setup that allowed you to easily see what games are running where.

  • Improved active game reporting.  We need more info about the active games.  This will include such things as:  rank setting when in above/below mode, whether the server is open/closed/password-protected, whether the mission is part of a campaign that's in progress, current and max number of players for each game, current state of the game so you'll know if it's in the joining/briefing stage or actually in-play ... plus whatever else we can come up with.

  • Website changed to be a repository of all FS2NetD goodness.  How-tos and FAQs concerning everything related to FS2NetD should be there, all in one central location.  Schedules for games should also be listed prominently so that people don't have to go searching for that stuff.  A java IRC chat client which easily connects to the lobby chat server might also be a good addition.  There could perhaps even be a forum on there which is specifically for discussing FS2NetD related issues, be it getting help with a problem, setting up new game times/dates, what builds work best, dealing with bugs, etc.

  • Much better user management.  We need to not only see various pilot statistics, but all have some general account management on there.  Having the ability to easily change passwords, at a minimum, is a must.  Creating new accounts should also be made a bit easier.

... and that's just for starters.

Obviously the source code side of things will require many modifications to make some of this stuff possible, which is why I would like to go ahead and get started on it all.  Waiting until after 3.6.10 is out really isn't an option since we need the the code changes tested well before then.  Nothing has to be ready anytime soon, but we really do need the details worked out as to what sort of support we need on the code side in the next few weeks.

So, does anyone have any ideas on what else we could do with the site?
And more importantly: any volunteers to do the work on the site?

 

Offline Shade

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Re: Improving the FS2NetD website...
You seem to have covered the useful web features pretty well - There's just one other thing I can think of offhand that might be nice to have. Some sort of calendar system would be nice, where people could add any games they intend to host (along with info about start time, which mod is used, preferred game types and the like), and with the current day's scheduled games shown in some prominent location.

Might come up with more once I've had time to think about it.

[Edit] Had some ideas for a possible layout to make the individual mods more accessible. Will try to see if my meager drawing skills suffice for making something that will at least convey the general idea. Might take a while, I really suck at drawing.
« Last Edit: March 04, 2008, 07:35:24 am by Shade »
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Offline castor

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Re: Improving the FS2NetD website...
A shoutbox would be nice! (for resolving immediate problems and other ad hoc sort of things)

 

Offline FUBAR-BDHR

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Re: Improving the FS2NetD website...
Automatic updates of the current games and players.
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Offline taylor

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Re: Improving the FS2NetD website...
Remembered something else that I had complained about before:  an accounts page for users that lists all of their pilots, categorized by mod, and the current stats for each.  This same page would be what has the ability to reset passwords, etc.  It should also give them the ability to delete old pilots associated with their account if they wish.


Automatic updates of the current games and players.
Automatic?  You mean what's displayed on the website, or what?

I have made changes to the client and server so that updates to the users and games will update sooner, rather than relying on timeouts.  I doubt that's what you mean however, since I think that you are referring to the website info refreshing in relative real-time.

 

Offline Bob-san

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Re: Improving the FS2NetD website...
My suggestions? Make it much more friendly for people NOT using 800x600 as a primary resolution. Basically the entire webpage seems to be sort of stuck in a small box... having it scale up to at least 1024x768 or 1280x1024 would be a good visual improvement.
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Offline taylor

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Re: Improving the FS2NetD website...
My suggestions? Make it much more friendly for people NOT using 800x600 as a primary resolution. Basically the entire webpage seems to be sort of stuck in a small box... having it scale up to at least 1024x768 or 1280x1024 would be a good visual improvement.
That is the very first item in my list actually. ;)

 

Offline Bob-san

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Re: Improving the FS2NetD website...
My suggestions? Make it much more friendly for people NOT using 800x600 as a primary resolution. Basically the entire webpage seems to be sort of stuck in a small box... having it scale up to at least 1024x768 or 1280x1024 would be a good visual improvement.
That is the very first item in my list actually. ;)
That, and spread out the information on the lists of players. Listing 10/20/50/100/All players and having that sort would be a nice improvement. Having the data spread out a bit horizontally would make the entire site easier on the eyes. We don't need 2cm of space between each item, but we do need more space.
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Offline FUBAR-BDHR

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Re: Improving the FS2NetD website...
Automatic updates of the current games and players.
Automatic?  You mean what's displayed on the website, or what?

I have made changes to the client and server so that updates to the users and games will update sooner, rather than relying on timeouts.  I doubt that's what you mean however, since I think that you are referring to the website info refreshing in relative real-time.

It doesn't have to be real time but just something so that it you leave the FS2netD active servers webpage list up that it refreshes the page like once a minute or something.  When playing I like to leave the page up on another monitor to see if there are other people or games. 
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Offline Bob-san

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Re: Improving the FS2NetD website...
Server list should be updated anywhere from once ever 3 to 10 minutes, though the player stats should be updated every 12 hours, at least in my opinion.
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Offline chief1983

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Re: Improving the FS2NetD website...
I should hopefully be able to offer my web developing, and stat tracking site experience.  I've been doing LAMP development for some time now, and would love to help improve FS2NetD.  I've already had various ideas from time to time on what I'd like to see, although I haven't written any down so they're escaping me at the moment.  I would really love to help collaborate on its redesign though.
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