Atari Music Network | Chiptune & MIDI Music

2016 Site news

2016 Site news

Postby Atari Music Network » Fri Mar 11, 2016 12:18 pm

Malcolm is taking a back seat to AMN due to other commitments. This doesn't mean he has gone, just sometimes life takes priority over other things. I'm sure Malc will be back now and then :)

As such, I (exxos) have taken over the site and hope to keep it running in its current form for the foreseeable future.

Most will notice the site is now running from my exxoshost server. Moving AMN was a total nightmare. Just about everything broke and required a LOT of script and database changes to get it working again.

I am fixing issues as I find them. So if anyone see's something "odd" then please let me know. Mostly its when PHP scripts don't run and dump half the file contents tot he screen (ouch!) or simple things like images missing in random places.

I am aware that the album images show as a blank image box. This seems to happen when a user creates a album but does not upload a album cover. As such the file is not found and doesn't show anything on the main home page. I'm not sure why its doing that, assume some bug in joomla or a extension somewhere. I am looking to do a fix for that, but the whole Joomla setup is a nightmare to debug :(

If the site comes up "server error 500" then I am probably "fixing" (breaking) stuff somewhere. Unfortunately one small typo in any PHP file and the whole site comes crashing down. As I can only make changes and debug them on the live site, I just want people to know its not "broke broke" just temporarily "broke" :)

Long term, in (probably many) years to come, I hope to revamp the site and take out joomla all together. The old (current) site will still be up, though a new "emulated" site will be created eventually. Where the look and feel of the site will basically be the same, only it will be running all my own code.

I also hope to simplify a lot of pages and make the site easier to use. I find the creation of albums and adding/editing songs rather confusing along with general navigation.

The only down side is I do not plan to add a forum on the new site. With atari-forum being the central hub for everything, and AMN forum being next to dead, I don't think we really need another forum.

If anyone has any thoughts about anything then please let me know. I don't want to be the guy who comes in takes over and trashes everything so people hate the site :)
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Re: 2016 Site news

Postby yerzmyey » Fri Mar 11, 2016 4:10 pm

Hmmmmmm. Maybe I should post the new link into FB group? What do You think of it?
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Re: 2016 Site news

Postby exxos » Mon Mar 14, 2016 8:42 pm

yerzmyey wrote:Hmmmmmm. Maybe I should post the new link into FB group? What do You think of it?


I didn't know there was a FB group as the link didn't work on the homepage. Will see if I can fix that.

I wouldn't post a link for now, something needs sorting with the domain name at some point anyway.
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Re: 2016 Site news

Postby atari_midi » Thu Mar 17, 2016 9:12 am

It would be a shame to throw the AMN forum into the trash bin. There is a lot of quite useful stuff in there.

While I understand this forum is almost dead right now, this may be due to the fact that this site was down for quite a while and people went away.

There is no other place like this one which is so dedicated to making music with Atari.

You/we could advertize that AMN is back again, for example.

But if you decide to close the AMN forum then please keep what is/was in there, because it is useful content which one cannot find over at Atari-Forum.com.

Ideally you/we would try to figure out how to merge the ANM forum with what´s over there:
http://www.atari-forum.com/viewforum.php?f=111
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Re: 2016 Site news

Postby yerzmyey » Thu Mar 17, 2016 2:03 pm

Well, if any advert is required, pls let me know. I can use the FB or put some links in some places.
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Re: 2016 Site news

Postby NCGM » Thu Mar 17, 2016 4:40 pm

Yes this is an excellent resource for Atari musicians, so hopefully it can be preserved and maybe the use of the ST will gain a second wind / revival.
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Re: 2016 Site news

Postby Atari Music Network » Thu Mar 17, 2016 6:49 pm

My main aim is to preserve all information here. In fact I'm talking to Dal over at AF right now to merge the AMN over to AF database. So all the posts will be kept.

So while the forum here may close, it is just being moved over to AF. They are running a much more updated board and have more active people over there anyway. So no use in maintaining 2 separate boards.

I have posted some news over at AF also. http://www.atari-forum.com/viewtopic.php?f=28&t=28931&p=291574#p291574

I know the site was offline for a long time, and likely people left. I hope to get people back here as I think this site is a good thing to keep going.

Though like I said in the AF post, the whole site is running joomla and its just a uphill battle with it. I'm surprised Malcolm managed to keep it up and running for as long as he did. One slight type or error in any file and the site just stops working totally. While the site seems stable, I don't think its a good idea to start trying to get people using it again, as if it crashes out , its just going to put people off totally. So have to be really careful how things are done....
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Re: 2016 Site news

Postby yerzmyey » Thu Mar 17, 2016 10:13 pm

Sounds good (I imagine it would be a kind of sub-forum then, like there's many of them - which is cool) - in this case I'd suggest to link our "AMN FORUM" button to the sub-forum, when it's ready - and it would make sense, I imagine.
I do hope that copying this content into AF is possible.
Good luck,
Y
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Re: 2016 Site news

Postby Atari Music Network » Thu Mar 17, 2016 10:22 pm

yerzmyey wrote:Sounds good (I imagine it would be a kind of sub-forum then, like there's many of them - which is cool) - in this case I'd suggest to link our "AMN FORUM" button to the sub-forum, when it's ready - and it would make sense, I imagine.
I do hope that copying this content into AF is possible.
Good luck,
Y


Dal is working on merging it over, so will see what he comes back with when hes done fiddling. Likely there will be a sub forum called atarimusic.net, then the sections here will reflect under that "topic" on the forum. Though its early days yet.

People have said over and over "dont lose the posts as they contain good info" so keeping posts will happen in one way or another.

I'm pretty sure they can be ported over to the AF, if not, plan B could be to export posts as articles, though that would need someone going though them all and seeing what should be kept and what can go kinda thing. Probably not something I would be to good at doing.

Aside from the forum "move" ( I think its a good move as there are a lot more active people over at AF ) I think people should look at the site as is having a new shell. OR a new theme, rather than the site closing or losing articles or something. Dragging the site into 2016 is probably a better thing to say :)
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Re: 2016 Site news

Postby Atari Music Network » Thu Mar 24, 2016 12:57 pm

New menu system has been done. It pretty much mimics the old one. The style is similar, but obviously it can't be identical.

All articles (over 200 of them!) have been tweaked so they will load and look as they did before. While the joomla engine outputted the pages before, they are now all basic html pages.

The main problem was all the joomla formatting, just non-standard html codes etc, so I had to include some joomla code to stop the pages from getting totally trashed. So they will look as they did before. Really they should be updated to take out all the joomla formatting but that would be a huge under taking. So its something I just don't deem as essential to do. Theres nothing wrong with the page formatting as they are, just annoying the joomla parts had to be transplanted over :(

The extra options like edit article, and save to pdf, and share to facebook or whatever are not currently added. They will be in time, though its not something essential to getting the new core running. Things like that are more "finial polishing". Of course if anyone has a suggestion for a new feature, or to make the site easier to use then let me know..

If someone can help with some programming php pages or features then it would be useful to speed to development on some areas. As I am doing the entire programming of the site myself, its going to take time.

Peoples profiles are now shown above all the albums they did. Clicking a album will expand the album box and show all the songs. On the live site, navigating around pages and albums seems like going around in circles. So everything is on a easy to understand and use page. This is a lot more "modern" looking, but its also simple. Some will love it, same may hate it, but overall its going to make a lot less navigational issues around the album pages.

Currently songs/albums have a lot of data which seems a little pointless. So some things are being left out (though in case I missunderstood something they could be added back in). for example there is a box which seems to always say "type:audio" well its a audio site so don't get why that is even there. The upload date of albums almost always is the same as the release date, so im sticking with release date as it just seems to show the same date which is a waste of screen space really.

Also audio type , there seems to be CD or MP3. I've left that out as the whole site is MP3 anyway, but in its place will be MP3 or Video. So songs can be submitted from youtube and played on the site. So if someone uploads a album which is all MP3's, then later does a music video, then the video can be included in the album.

While on the subject of MP3's, there seems to be twice as many MP3's on the server than actually in peoples albums. So I need to look into that more at some point. I suspect people had much confusion while figuring out how to upload songs and ended up uploading them twice or something.

I've not started on the "upload" part of the site yet. Though I hope to make everything editable on a single pages, rather than having to go looking for your songs/albums to edit like it is now. Mostly it seems hard work and I just end up going around in circles trying to work out whats what. I think making it all easier to navigate will help new comers to the site. They seems to be new people signing up all the time, but nobody is uploading songs, so assume its to confusing for new people to figure out. In anycase, the new upload page will be a lot easier.

As for the homepage, the play list will be on the right of the main player, similar to what it is now. Though I am in 2 minds if to double up on that box to list "popular songs" or "top albums" or whatever in a tabbed box, rather than having all 4 boxes on screen at once. The good thing is with a tabbed box, more options can be added, like list all songs in a play list which are all chip music for example. Currently with fixed boxes the options are stuck with how they are now. So if anyone has a opinion about this.....

Dal over at atariforum is working on porting all the forum posts there, along with all the user accounts. Should that ultimately fail, I will keep this current forum online (though with a normal phpbb style layout)

I'm working on all this as fast as I can, my php/css programming is a little rusty, so that is taking more time than actually programming the site :)

There probably won't be any regular news updates, at least not until I have something more workable. So if I go quiet for some weeks, its not because I've given up, just I have a day job and life like anyone else so patiences is they key :)
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Re: 2016 Site news

Postby Atari Music Network » Thu Apr 21, 2016 11:49 am

As a "update" , I've not had chance to work on the new site for some time. I am totally swamped with hardware development and real life work at the moment. Likely I may not have chance to work on the new site until later on in the year.
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Re: 2016 Site news

Postby NCGM » Thu Apr 21, 2016 8:11 pm

Thanks and good luck when you return to work on this site. I'm going through challenging and momentous life changes too, so I understand.
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Re: 2016 Site news

Postby Atari Music Network » Fri Jul 22, 2016 2:10 pm

I've made some tweaks to the site, it *should* load up and run faster now.
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