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Archive Restoration


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#1 Alahmnat

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Posted 03 October 2012 - 11:50 PM

I may have found a way to import all of our current Archive content from DPWR.NET. It just took some lateral thinking about how to structure everything.

There's still some kinks to work out. Ultimately, this still may not work at all. However, the new Archive structure is similar enough to the old one's now that I think I can pull it off. It's more dependent upon how well I can trick Invision Board into thinking the old data is valid in its new context than anything else.

Even if it does work, there's still some pretty glaring issues that will need to be addressed. First, links in articles that go to other articles may well be broken irreparably. Second, the custom template tags are definitely going to be broken, though I may be able to tease some functionality back out of a couple of them. We'll see. The rest will just need to be edited. Third, attachments may or may not actually come forward properly, I still have some research to do in that department.

I'm putting together a veritable whiteboard of things to get in place before this conversion happens. It may be a week or so before I'm ready to give this a shot, but hopefully after this week, the Archive will be up and running as though it never left, and we'll be on more solid ground going forward.

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#2 Alahmnat

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Posted 04 October 2012 - 02:32 AM

Know how I said it'd take a week to prep for this?

Yeah, I lied. The Archive has been fully restored. Now it's on to finishing the skinning and setup of the main Archive landing page, and then we can start on the long, tedious work of cleaning up all of the really, really out-of-date material in there.

First, though, it's time for bed. More awesome tomorrow.

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#3 Alahmnat

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Posted 05 October 2012 - 12:20 PM

I will be spending this weekend (and probably the rest of this coming week, honestly) working on the custom BBCodes needed to get the Archive back into tip-top shape. Presently, my goals are:
  • Re-introduce inter-article linking using [archive="Article Name"]<link text>[/archive] and [archive="<article ID>"]<link text>[/archive].
  • Add a convenient single-tag format linking mechanism. For example, [article="D'ni"] would link to the article about D'ni, and use the name of the article as the link text.
  • Provide a Wikipedia-style "red links" capability, enabling you to pre-link to articles that don't exist yet and have them appear as links to the "New Article" page. This functionality will be rolled into the inter-article link tags, no extra work will be required on your part.
  • Re-implement the Table of Contents tag as a single-tag BBCode (e.g. "[toc]").
  • Re-implement template tags. Some additional work will need to be done to make the current template bits work within the new templating system, but we'll have a much more powerful platform to work with once everything is updated.
  • Introduce a footnote BBCode tag for adding references to articles in a standardized manner.
  • Add a few special-purpose BBCodes, like one for inputting KI coordinates.
Once these elements are in place, I will be updating the Archive's various guidelines and how-tos to make sure we're instructing people on the proper way to contribute high-quality material. After that, I'll be kicking off an audit of the entire Archive, working to bring the whole system up to snuff. This is where outside help would be most appreciated, because there are over 1300 articles to sort through!

Updates as they happen, as always :).

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#4 Lyrositor

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Posted 05 October 2012 - 04:24 PM

Looking good! A definite improvement in look and style over the previous website. Excellent skinning. /thumbsup :cool:

#5 Alahmnat

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Posted 06 October 2012 - 02:59 AM

I'm glad you like it, Lyrositor :). Welcome aboard!

As a further update to the Archive, the Table of Contents tag is working again! W'hoo!

I think I'm going to call it a night (that thing took forever to implement) so I can be up and cogent for the All Guilds Meeting tomorrow. After that, I'll try to get the new footnote citation and article linking BBCodes put together. With any luck, I'll only have template tag parsing left by Sunday. Then it's just a handful of category tweaks and we'll be off to the races :).

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#6 Alahmnat

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Posted 06 October 2012 - 10:04 PM

Quick BBCode update:

Inter-article links are working again (initial tests are, at least... if you run into any problems, let me know), but the format has changed, so any existing ones will need to be updated to match before they'll work. I'll add this to the Archive guides as well, but quickly, here's how it works:

[article=<article name>] will link to an article named <article name> if it exists, with "<article name>" as the link text. If the article doesn't exist, a "red link" will be put in its place, which currently just links to the normal "New Article" page. I'm working on figuring out how to auto-fill the article name in the Title field. You'll be able to tell them apart from normal links because, as on Wikipedia, they'll be neon bright red.

[article=<article name>|some text] will link to an article named <article name> if it exists, with "some text" as the link text. Note the separator is a pipe character (that thing above the \ on most keyboards). As before, the link will point to the "New Article" page if the article doesn't exist as named.

Note that this tag can only be used in the Archive. Because it runs a database query to see if the article exists, it does add to the page's server impact, and I don't want them parsing everywhere on the site if it can be avoided. It also seems to be causing some problems with the preview process, but I'm not sure why at the moment. I suspect it's because of the timing of the query within the parsing process, but I'll have to do a little more digging. For now, at least it's working. :)

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#7 Capella

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Posted 08 October 2012 - 08:58 AM

The inter-article single text linking thing looks amazing. I always get intimidated by wikis because I'm not fluent in how to edit them and link between things; having it as simple as you've made it is fantastic.

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#8 Trexon

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 01:44 PM

This looks good. However, why not just revamp DPWR and avoid paying for two sites?
What a man's got, he'll learn to hate. -Pete Loeffler of Chevelle, Family System

We should all hope and look towards the day where man realizes that the sounds exiting his mouth are mostly complaints and a change occurs. -Pete Loeffler of Chevelle, Still Running

It's hard not to be a menace to society, when half the population is happy on their knees. -Ivan Moody of Five Finger Death Punch, Meet The Monster

#9 Alahmnat

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 07:41 PM

There's a few reasons I moved the site.
  • It's easier to remember. dpwr.net has been around for over 10 years now, and there's still people who can't write it out correctly. I think I've seen just about every combination possible, but "DPRW" is a pretty common mistyping.
  • "DPWR", though it does actually stand for something, is mostly a meaningless lump of letters (which I think contributes to people misspelling it a lot); "guildofarchivists.org" is more informative as a URL.
  • It made sense to finally give the Guild of Archivists an official home on the web, with a site and a domain that mapped directly to the organization. DPWR was always the "official unofficial" home of GoArch; this just makes its presence a little more explicit.
  • My goals for the website have changed a bit since DPWR was first launched back in 2001. There's been a lot of restructuring of data here, and a lot of stuff has been hidden/removed.
I first started DPWR to combine two of my existing sites that really had absolutely nothing to do with each other: The D'niPedia for which DPWR eventually became so marginally famous, and The Writers Ring, which was sort of an attempt to house and encourage the creation of Myst and other fanfiction works, which ultimately became a vestigial, non-functional appendix as my focus shifted to the Archive full-time.

Moving to the Guild of Archivists allowed me to clarify the purpose of the website. GoArch is focused on maintaining and building out the Archive, and incorporating the Writers Ring as a means of fostering the development of a canonically-compatible "extended universe" of D'ni fanfiction and content.

Ultimately, it's not all that expensive to run both sites. The server I'm on has unlimited storage and bandwidth, and both domains are only a couple dozen bucks a year combined. DPWR is being kept around for historical purposes for the time being, and I have had to pull it up a couple of times to correct Archive entries that broke in the migration process, but it will likely shut down at some point in the future.

Be the storyteller
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