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Preparing for the move

Turns out I didn't have as much school to deal with as I thought! Hooray for snow days, I guess.

Anyway, down to business. I'd like to get started on the domain change as soon as possible, meaning probably this weekend. It may be done as early as tomorrow (Saturday), or it may be as late as Monday depending on how things go, but I'd really like it to be done no later than then. Consider this the official name change and potential downtime warning—I don't anticipate any problems, but just in case, the site may be inaccessible for parts of this weekend/Monday, and there may be some broken links both here and probably on some forums for a while until I fix what I can and alert other people to the change. I apologize in advance if this inconveniences anyone, but hopefully any problems that arise shouldn't take long to sort out.

That additional content won't be ready by the time the change goes down, but I'll try and find something else to add instead and will get to that other thing when I can.

649 and the Phoenixdex, as mentioned earlier, won't be changing over (and therefore have no reason to go down; if Altered Origin is borked you can still go to those sites to entertain yourselves) until a little later when I have more time to look at the process involved with moving them. The new blog thing won't be affected or changing at all because it's not hosted on my server and I have no control over the domain unless I spend unnecessary money. All three of those have been updated recently, by the way—it has been suggested that I find some way to announce updates to my subprojects on this site, but I'd rather not waste entire news updates doing that if I update one of those and don't have anything to say relevant to AO itself. After the domain switch I'll probably spend a few hours figuring out a way to do that, probably just an additional content area at the top of this page or something.

Altered Origin

Last update I mentioned the possibility of changing the site's name and domain/URL. I've spent some time considering names that I thought best fit the site and that were still available as domain names (do you have any idea how rare that is these days? Quite frankly I'm amazed that three of the ones I really liked weren't taken yet), and after going back and forth I have finally reached a decision. Yes, the site will be changing internets homes. dcNET isn't going to see February. Taking its place will be Altered Origin, which will be accessible at alteredorigin.net. Just in case you missed it last time, this is not a change in direction or content for the site. All that is changing is the name and domain. Everything else will remain exactly as it is; it will just be available at a slightly less childish URL from this point on.

It will still be a little while before the change takes place because I have a lot to check into to make sure there are as few broken links on any of my sites as possible in the aftermath, but I am going to be gradually rolling out changes every few days or so. There may be snatches of downtime or a few temporary 404s here and there while this happens, but hopefully these will be minimal. I'd like the main site's changes to be finalized no later than January 29th; it will probably happen well before that depending on how quickly I can work. Again, I will alert you guys when I'm getting ready to switch domains proper just in case something goes south and the site is unavailable for a while, and so you're able to start updating any bookmarks, etc.. dementedchicken.net will also be set up to redirect to alteredorigin.net, at least for a month or two. I'll change 649 and the Phoenixdex over a little bit later, just because I still haven't even looked at what's involved in getting their systems to change URLs–probably not too hard, but I don't yet know. Ideally I'd like to have some sort of substantial content update to go with the name change; it might or might not be one of the obvious things on the to-do list, as there's an additional secretish project I'd like to start sometime soon, but if I can swing it I'll try to get more done along with that. Or instead of that, depending on how tricky it is. We'll see.

While I'm at it, I'd also like to take the time to mention that seriously really this time I'm pretty sure I've fixed the Wargle layout for IE6/7. I was finally able to get to some working test browsers, and while it's sort of ugly the navigation does in fact work and is perfectly usable. Hell, it even works in IE5 (please tell me none of you are using IE5. Please.), though there are other awkward problems with the layout in that one. I would still recommend that you avoid Warbird if you're using IE6/7, but if you're dying for moar Wargle then it is at least navigable now. My life would be easier if a) IE9 is really as great as Microsoft claims it is and everyone who possibly could would upgrade to it, or b) people would just switch browsers to anything else, but as neither of those will ever really be feasible for everyone... well, there you go. It should be fixed. (I would love to get some confirmation on that from someone else with IE6/7, if possible.)

On a slightly related note, apparently that problem where the styleswitcher forgets the style you've chosen is still happening, at least for me. Damn it. *sigh* I'll keep working on it. I might be able to figure out a way to go back to the more reliable styleswitcher I had in 2008-2009, though it's going to take some fiddling and is technically not a priority until after the domain change. Knowing me I'll probably procrastinate on some homework (school starts again on Tuesday D: ) and look into it sooner than that anyway, though. Meh.

the times, they are a’changin’

good god three updates in seventy-two hours, what devilry is this

I didn't add too much today, though. I tweaked one more problem with the styleswitcher that was preventing it from remembering your style properly, a problem I suspect has been happening ever since I added the switcher and I simply never noticed because I was always using the current default style anyway. You may have to restart your browser for the fix to take effect. I am hoping to high heaven that I don't have to touch that thing again for a good, long while. (I could still use a heads-up from IE6/7 users as to whether the Wargle layout is working now, by the way). I added a Kecleon render to the Free Goodies page, and I fixed up the slightly older Pikachu render so that it was more "cute" and less "staring into your soul". I've temporarily de-affiliated with AobaruNet, as the webmaster is taking a little time to work on some stuff, but they should be back on track soon.

While we're on the subject of webmasters working on stuff, I have a small announcement to make: I may be changing the website's name and URL (and subsequently the URLs of any projects hosted on subdomains of this domain, like the Phoenixdex and 649). No, dcNET is not closing; no, I'm not "changing the website's focus" (bahahaha like dcNET ever had a proper focus in the first place) and turning it into another graphic design website with free video game site layouts. There will be no silly hiatus, though there may be just a little bit of downtime while things change over and some broken links until I can update them all. The current content/projects and all future content/projects will remain the same "whatever fancrap I'm currently interested in with more Pokémon/ASB stuff than I'd originally intended". I'll save the gory details for a later update, or perhaps for a revision of the About page somewhere down the line, but in short I've outgrown the name and it implies a focus/mascot/direction that the site never took. It was okay for three years, but now it's time for a slightly different image, methinks.

I don't know when this will happen; I don't know for a fact that it will happen at all. I'm still deciding on potential new names and domains. (I've actually liked the word "Insubstantiality" for a long time—part of why it's the current temporary title of the new fanstuff blog—and the domain is still available, but it might be a headache for people to type or remember and I can't think of a cool short name like dcNET.) I pay for my hosting out of pocket and don't currently have a steady income, so I also need to consider whether I can really spare the extra ~$9 a year. If this change does go down, however, then rest assured you will all be given ample warning and a heads-up about the potential for downtime and broken links, and I'll have a redirect set up for a while just in case you forget about the switch. I may still do something with dementedchicken.net down the road, as it came free with the hosting package and it'd be a shame to waste it, but it may not be the internets home of this site for too much longer.

Troubles shot (I think)

I was able to get help fixing the styleswitcher, so it should work now! Yay! (The styleswitcher links for the Wargle layout are just above the footer, fyi.) I also think I fixed the reported problems with the Wargle layout's navigation; I don't have access to functional copies of IE6 and IE7 at the moment, though (damn you Wine Internet Explorer, why do you lie to me), so I am unable to verify this on my own. If you have either of those browsers, can you switch to the Warbird style (on any page; no need to stick to the test page anymore) and let me know if you can use the navigation? If not, and if I still can't fix it, well... at least now you have the other two layouts to choose from, so you can still browse the site normally. Sorry for the inconvenience (and also for the brief instances of downtime today that resulted from my tinkering). Now I can finally get started on the alternate version of this layout that I really wanted to do before, sheesh.

I also got some help with the comment system I'm using, so you should actually be able to use double quotes in your comments without them looking funny later.

 

EDIT: HOWEVER, somehow I have magically managed to break the fanart gallery again. The images are still there, the descriptions are still there if you hover the mouse over a thumbnail, but the lightbox effect no longer works and they're all displayed in an ungodly long list running down the page. What the hell, man. I'll try and fix that soonish, I guess grumble Crisis averted. Styleswitcher broke the gallery, but I found a workaround that'll do for now.

Happy New Year!

A few things to say today.

First of all, you'll notice that I went ahead and set all the pages back to the Lugia/Jolteon style. I got an error report from someone the other day saying that the Wargle layout was effectively unusable in Internet Explorer. I'm still waiting for them to get back to me with more details about the problem, but in the meantime I switched to a layout that definitely works in all browsers so no one else has trouble navigating while I work on it. If you had a similar problem with the Wargle layout, or if you have access to Internet Explorer in one version or another and wouldn't mind giving me a hand in troubleshooting whatever's wrong, the Wargle layout is still visible on this test page; I'd appreciate it if you could check it out in IE and email me a detailed account of anything that's broken (screenshots are a big help, by the way). I'll repair it as soon as I can get a better handle on what's wrong.

EDIT: After a quick check on one of my other computers and some additional emails, it looks like the problem is in older versions of Internet Explorer; IE 8 seems to work fine. I am so far beyond caring about IE 5 that it's not even funny, and I'd rather not have to care about IE 6, but if you're using IE 6 or IE 7 I'd still appreciate it if you could let me know what's wrong. I've also noticed a few other minor problems, so I'll be checking those as well. Hopefully it'll all be sorted out by the time I get the styleswitcher fixed.

Speaking of layouts, this reminded me that I still need to puzzle out what's wrong with the styleswitcher; if I can actually get that fixed, then at least if the problem with the Wargle layout is "entirely IE's fault" I can keep the layout and give IE users a functioning alternative. I'll see if I can't get some help with that problem later today, after I get some other obligations out of the way. I also need to get a little assistance on the new comment system, which for some absurd reason is not able to handle quotation marks correctly. Argh.

I don't have any actual content updates for dcNET itself at the moment, but I do have another little project-side-thing to show you. Insubstantiality is a simple blog I started for fandom-related... stuff. (The title will probably change a million times before I'm satisfied with it, which is why it's only listed as "Fanstuff Blog" in the Network menu.) It'll mostly be personal thoughts about the various fandoms I'm interested in, discussions of projects I'm working on, things like that that aren't appropriate for the updates page of dcNET itself. I don't know whether anyone will actually be interested in reading whatever goes up there, and I don't especially care—I just think it'd be helpful for me to actually write some of it down and get it off my chest and out of my head. Right now the only post of note is a list of "fandom resolutions", fanthings I'm going to attempt to start/finish/keep up with this year; aside from a resolution to update moar none of them are directly related to dcNET, but if I'm able to hold to them successfully then I'll have stories, art and other content I can add to the site anyway, so there's that.

I also finished another story for 649, so that should hopefully be up later in the week after I tweak a few things.

Hope your 2010 was great and that your 2011 will be even better. And that I can keep that "update dcNET more often" resolution. Yup.

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