September, October, What Happened?
As I am sure most of you know by now, it's been really quiet around The Havoc for the past few months. I have been holding back a lot of content that needs to get posted and been trying to build up the On Air component of the site for the last few months. That hasn't been an easy task, and I'm currently weighing the pros and cons of continuing that route. In the midst of all that, I've been trying to shove off a slave-site that I had built for a client in August onto their own domain. That should be done by the end of the month. All the while realizing that I have two sites to work on for the same client. While I'd love to say that money doesn't talk, it does - and I've been very clear that digital finances will always result in student loans being lower - so that's the gist of it. I went where the money went.
As that project slowly comes to a close, that means that The Havoc will slowly begin to pickup again. The first things that I have queued up for work is a facelift followed by content updates. I have one On-Air post that needs to get transitioned to YouTube and then archived here, plus another set of documents that are due for upload. Based upon how things are going with converting some of the materials I have from having office data in them to being for public consumption, user accounts may also go away at that time. Right, so I'm getting ahead of myself, lets break it down...
Over the past forty-five days, I have been slowly trying to transition back to working in the office. In of itself, that isn't a bad thing. However, it has meant that I've had to rework a lot of my scheduling that I've been using throughout 2020. It took time to get into it, and it'll take some time to get back out of it. As such, any semblance of a schedule for the Havoc has gone completely out the window. I can't guarantee timelines just yet, but I'd like to believe that by the end of Q1 of FY21, we will have new content and a new site. I've already started kicking around design ideas in my mind while working on these other two projects, so we'll see how that shakes out.
I'm still sitting on piles of books, reports, and data to comb through that dwarves pretty much anything else in comparison - such is the life of a historian to never be done with research. I also have some grad school and General Staff College material to go through, notwithstanding flight school manuals, leadership training materials, and research on two firearms that came into my possession earlier this year (two M1 Garands).
The End of an Era
Over the course of the last 15 years that I've been doing web stuff, I have run generally the same design schemas and the same layouts. The one you see now is the most recent of those, and the limitations I've found within them are starting to show. The two projects that I've been working on have shown me that the future forward does not use designs such as these and, as such, I will be retiring the classic "scroller madness" designs that I've been using. These old designs originated back in 2004 with the old XMB forum software, and I can no longer see a reason to carry them forward while staying relevant. Change is always hard, but it's something that is inevitable here.
I had considered the potential of keeping a classic format with the new, but that will take more time than I'd really like to invest at this time. With that being said, I have decided to keep the classic design on the new database site that I will be moving some content to later this year or (more likely) next year with others in my office. The Alter site will also be getting renovated, though it's facelift will probably come in early Q2 of FY21. I'll break this all down at the bottom of this post.
Phasing Out of Accounts
When I started scanning in documents and finding documents, it had occurred to me to keep things locked down just a little bit more. As time has gone on, I have been converting data that has office data in it to publicly consumable information. Most of those are presentations, others are technical data. Technical Data will be moved to a site that I am currently referring to as ARCHANGEL. ARCHANGEL's origins started as a repository for equipment drawings, but I believe that it's function could serve to better house technical data in addition to drawings. As such, any accounts on The Havoc will be migrated to that site, and most - if not all - restricted material will be moved over there as well.
Again, the data I had stored here behind an account wall wasn't sensitive - it was all retrieved from public space. I just simply wanted to better track where those materials were going and who had access to them. The same can be said of the ARCHANGEL site.
I will probably leave accounts on here anyway, just so if anyone wants to comment or add anything to posts, they can.
What to Expect Coming Up
To break this down for everyone, lets go with the timetable below...
|AMH||MERIDIAN||New site for The Havoc||End of Q1-Q2 FY21|
|FDS||REMORA||One of two client websites||1 DEC 2020|
|FMO||AQUA||Second of two client websites||20 NOV 2020|
|MAD||ARCHANGEL||New archival database website||Q3-4 FY21, Q1 FY22|
|MHA||VARITAS||New Alter website||Q2-3 FY21|
That's about all I have update wise for now, folks. The long and short of it is that I've been busy and new things are coming.
One other thing, there are two history presentations coming up on Twitch! The first one will be on the SR-71 Blackbird and will be on 28 November at 6 pm central time. The second will be on 18 December, also at 6 pm central time, and will be on Unit 731. Look for posts in the On Air section on those sometime by the end of the week.