Happy ⑨th Birthday, Flashii!
Thank you for your continued use of Flashii! The 9th anniversary of something always feels more like the beginning of anticipation for the 10th anniversary and right now for me that's definitely the way it is.
Though it may not look like it to the naked eye, I've done a lot of backend changes in the last year such as moving to a new hosting provider, I've done a lot of reworks to both chat clients among a number of other smaller things. A lot of it has been in preparation for bigger things.
In the 9th year of Flashii I really want to get things done. Implement a lot of features that have been promised and/or considered for years but I've been unable to properly pull off because of various reasons. The common library for PHP projects I've been working on, Index, has really been taking shape in the past couple months and I think it will be ready soon to serve as the base for the website's code. Not only will this allow me to more rapidly update Flashii, surrounding smaller websites such as the tracker and labs will also greatly benefit from this library essentially being shared code across all of them, maintaining consistency and removing the headache of keeping things "in sync" that has repelled me from touching things in the past.
On the other side of things (literally) there's the chat. There's been some long-standing issues with the chat that are mostly related to its aging codebase, in the past year I've already done a lot of work to rewrite large parts of "modern" client which has led me to make the decisions to just focus my attention towards the existing chat clients rather than write a new one from scratch. So, I'll use this post to formally announce my plans regarding the chat clients. Firstly, renames of them as projects, the "modern" client has been known as Umi since the reinstating of the chat back in 2019 (it carried yet another name before that) but to reflect the revival of work on the "legacy" client I'll be renaming both projects. The "modern" client will be known as Mami and the "legacy" clients will be known as Ami, named after the Futami twins from THE IDOLM@STER, reflecting their equal status (although Mami better). Secondly, in order to reflect this change, at some point I will be moving Mami to the subdomain of chat.flashii.net and Ami to another subdomain, I'm not entirely certain what to go with for that one yet though. I don't want to stick with sockchat.flashii.net because that seems like it would be confusing, I would much rather have a notice telling the viewer that the domains have split up.
Anyway, I will like to share a list with some features I aim to have implemented by next year:
- Private Messaging: An e-mail-like, passive alternative to direct messaging someone in chat that lives on the website.
- Forum Polls: Being able to attach a poll to a forum topic, will probably come with a dedicated Q/A forum section.
- Feature Voting: A voting system for the Feature Requests section where you can vote for priority on suggested features.
- Forum Emoticons: The lack of forum emoticons has been a glaring omission, the work I'm doing with Index should be just the fix for this.
- Automatic category and topic updating: Allowing categories and topics to checks for now posts without refreshing the page.
- Additional BB Codes: Similarly to the lack of emoticons, the backend has thus far made it impossible to provide some BB Codes that are considered basic functionality like quotes.
- Saving drafts: Will allow you to save a post as a draft, rather than immediately posting it, so you can come back to it later.
- Forum Uploads: A very nice addition to chat has been the introduction of EEPROM, allowing you uploads images and other files directly in the chat. Extending this to the forum requires some reworking of the system but it will definitely be coming.
- Category/Topic Muting: Prevent certain categories or topics from appearing as unread.
- Notifications: Receiving on-site notifications for interactions with your posts.
- Redesigned Home Page: I already gave the landing page (home page while logged out) a redesign in the last year, I would like to also give the logged in home page a big make over in the style of an activity feed.
These are the things that have the highest priority, in no particular order. I hope to be able to look back at this post next year without disappointment.
Once again, thank you for your continued use of Flashii!