A few months ago I borrowed a bundle of disks from ex-C64 developer “Matt Young” who took on the daunting task of converting Ultimate Play the Game’s “The Bubbler” from the Spectrum.
The big problem which eventually killed the conversion was Ultimate’s insistance that they replicated the same draw routine as the ZX Spectrum (Which was about 1mhz faster than the C64 in terms of processing power).
23 years later, we helped to salvage all of the sources and a combination of Matt, David (A colleague on GTW64) and Jani (A C64 developer) pieced together everything to form a fully complete conversion.
Good news, but work is now finally under way on the redevelopment of GTW64 (The C64 sister site), which could take sometime… but at least i’ve started 😉
At present a project plan is being produced to ensure that the process is as quick as possible. We will be going with a Drupal CMS based system, which is useful as i’ve been building a large scaled archival project at work for almost 2 years now, so there is some reusability there and potential to get a prototype set up fairly quickly 🙂
The largest challenge still remains, where we need to tidy up the existing reviews/shots and bits and get an automated way of getting everything into the new system. Plans for this are underway, but it means going over the existing site and tidying up. Whilst doing this i’ll be improving the metadata to increase searchability of whats there for now – which is one of many broken aspects of the old 5-6yr old design.
I’m not sure how long everything will take, but what is difficult is working on the web all day and coming home to do it… so it will take some knuckling down to sort out. Additionally I want to keep the project running simultaneously to keep up the findings, so this will slow things too. Overall the searchability of the site, findability and readability of content will be improved which in time should help ensure that ex-developers are more likely to find things. At present Meta is poor, which does not help users to find what we write, and in the modern day web we could end up being buried away too much 😉
Anyone following the main site will have noticed a few cosmetic changes, but behind the scenes there have been various improvements to fix a few its problems to keep things ticking over. Plans will be to later move the main site into Drupal and enable the main site to be able to search across its own content, as well as GTW64 based items (With potentially being able to hook into the other sister sites too… though more research required there with the different systems being used). This is lower on the priority list, as the main site isn’t anywhere near as dated as the GTW64 site, and its migration should be a lot more trivial in comparison.
I’m thinking from my work aspect to keep updates via a few blog entries every so often, so keep an eye out on my blog.