Well, it's been a little bit under a month since I last updated the blog and it's probably not a bad time to do so. There's a handful of folks who are really looking for the features that are planned for release 5.5 so let's talk about where we are with iToysoldiers right now.
First and foremost, the changes to the site infrastructure look like they're nothing but good. The site's been reliable. The site's been faster. These are all good things. Not having to worry about waking up to a dead site has made me happy. So yay! It's also kind of given me a new "lease on life" so to speak. Not having to be reactive and deal with iTS being slow makes it easier to get excited about building features and functionality, not to mention actually using the site.
But that brings me to new features. Release 5.5 is all about event management (well, not all about... there's some housecleaning in there as well). After a number of years two event organizers finally gave the site a try without me babysitting them. To call it an unmitigated disaster would be a bit harsh but it "wasn't great". Lots of it revolved around the esoteric mechanisms required to get certain functionality to work. Short version: I made it to hard to run an event.
Release 5.5 is going to consolidate all of the event types into a single event and seperate the rule set mechanics from the creation of an event. So rather than three really long, specialized forms there will be one easy form to create the event and then a single long form to set up the mechanics. What happens is you create your event and then if you want iTS event management features you can "create a rule" set. That rule set will define actions that the site will take as the event progresses.
There are a myriad of benefits. First, I think it'll be clearer how to accomplish specific things. Second, I can make "cook books" of commonly used event types. Third, it SHOULD make it easier for me to add new functionality. Lastly, and most importantly, it'll be easier to use.
I'm pretty excited about this release. I'm reasonably confident that I'll have the first version of it live on the 24th of November. It's good to have a deadline and there's a Shadespire league at the local club starting up that all these features will support.
Hang in there guys. I'm still committed and iTS will continue to be your solution for chronicling the glory of your miniature wargaming armies.
Rob @ iToysoldiers