Side 7 has been very quiet lately, both from its user-base and its management. I've been exceptionally busy, and unfortunately Side 7 has been pushed to the wayside as a result. Family, full-time work, and almost full-time school has dominated my time, and I have not been able to find the time to dedicate to Side 7. My numerous calls for anyone who knows Perl programming and is willing to help out on the site have met with deafening silence. Side 7 remains a one-man show.
Fortunately, however, I am not closing the site. Instead, I've been learning new technologies and programming languages. I've been working on a complete redesign of the site from the ground up, using a whole new programming language and framework. I will be working with someone who does UI design and development to help create a more modern and streamlined interface to the site.
Using the new framework and programming language, development overall should be quicker and easier to modify, and the resulting code should be more robust, easier to manage, and faster.
When the site is complete, all current accounts will be migrated, and all currently uploaded assets, comments, etc. will be maintained and carried over. I will be restructuring how accounts work; there will continue to be free accounts, but the site will be moving to a micro-transactions model (similar to how some free-to-play MMOs operate, such as "Dungeons and Dragons Online" or "Star Trek Online").
I will also be adding a tonne of new features:
- Removal of most account upload limits
- New upload types (music, prose, potentially videos)
- Social-media styled features
- Truly implemented friends groups
- Interest groups (Want to start a group about your favorite anime?)
- Better implementation and use for account credits (this has been a long-time coming)
- Brand new server hardware (it's here and in the middle of being configured)
- And a lot more.
This is no small task, and I refuse to put a time limit or deadline on it. I currently am not working full-time, but I am seeking freelance work to bring in money. Paying my bills (including the co-location and domain registration bills for Side 7) comes first, unfortunately. So, work will be done as I have the time to do it.
What this means is that my ability to get to things such as e-mails to the Admin account, and basic user account requests, is limited and will be slow. It also means that I won't be fixing anything short of a major security issue on the current site. If I'm going to get the new Side 7 done and launched, I need to focus on that.
We will have open Beta Testing of the new site, as well as early-adopter programs that will give your account bonuses. More details on that as things progress, but expect a major revival effort. As much as this is an effort to make the site more appealing to existing members, this is an even larger effort to garner interest from a new generation of members.
We hope that you will stick with Side 7 through this, and give the new site a try when it's done or in Beta. And, as always, if there is anything you think I can do that would improve things, let me know. I can be reached via e-mail (badkarma [at] side7 [dot] com), or AIM (armitige3). E-mails to the webmaster or admin accounts are currently taking a lower priority.