We skipped a meeting update on account of being very busy! However, we've been getting through lots of stuff, and you may have noticed a *cough* small deploy and its associated documentation. I took a week off to prepare for my PhD viva, but my awesome team definitely did NOT slow down in my absence *loves*
Our big deploy included a lot of front-end changes which should make the Archive much more stable and accessible. As always, if you notice a problem then please let us know via the support and feedback form. We're especially keen to deal with any issues which impact on accessibility - it's hard for us to test every possible scenario, especially where assistive technology is concerned, so please don't be shy about letting us know if something isn't working for you.
We're experiencing a known issue with our new HTML parser, which tidies up your HTML for display. The last update made it much faster and less memory-intensive, but it also inadvertantly introduced a couple of bugs in display, notably a problem with it 'eating' white space (OOPS). Our fabulous coders are working hard to fix this - please bear with us in the meantime!
We're hoping to deploy the code needed for matching participants in gift exchange challenges in the next two weeks - our stalwart team of testers are standing by waiting for the wonderful Naomi to finish coding!
Cool stuff coming up
- The new collections and challenges code which will (we hope) complete the functionality needed to run exchange-type challenges on the Archive! We're excited to be working with the mods of multi-fandom challenge Remix Redux who have bravely volunteered to be our test case for this part of the code.
- Once the exchange challenge code is in, we'll be turning our attention to building the necessary code for other types of challenges. Users who have been following us for a while may remember us collecting scenarios for different kinds of collection and challenge - we're using these to help us develop tools which will cater to a wide variety of fannish events.
- Skins! We've been promising them for a long while, and we finally signed off on a beautiful design for them. Now we just have to snare a couple of coders to implement them... we're hoping this will come soon!
- Advanced search and browse! This is a big job, so it will be a while before we can actually implement it, but the wonderful Sidra is pulling together all our design and planning on this and putting together a revamped search and browse functionality. When it comes it should improve performance as well as usability, so we're pretty excited to have someone who's able to tackle it!
New tutorials for the Archive!
You may have noticed that we posted a few tutorials recently offering guidance about new features on the Archive. This is something we're hoping to do more of in future, and to make them easier to find we've created a new Tutorials section on the Archive FAQ. If there's a topic you'd particularly like a tutorial for, please let us know! Likewise, if you have written a tutorial you'd like to share, send us a link and we'll consider adding it to the site.
News from our subcommittees and sister committee
I'm so proud of the dedication and hard work of everyone involved with the Archive. <3
- Coders are hard at work fixing bugs and beginning on the implementation of the next round of cool stuff! We're also working on improving training for new people.
- Testers have been working hard to get all the latest code tested and onto the live Archive. They'd love some help verifying the latest code to hit the Archive - if you think you could help then please check out our post on verifying new code.
- Tag wranglers have been running around in a very excited manner celebrating the introduction of metatags. They're now buckling down to rewrite policies taking into account the new code, and recategorising tags. \0/
- Support (our sister committee) deserve a big shout-out for their hard work keeping users informed and speedily responding to problems - they've answered a phenomenal amount of requests in the last month. AD&T are super-grateful for their work communicating with users and letting us know about priorities for bugfixes.
If there are things you'd like to do or say, please share them in comments, via the AO3 support and feedback form, by volunteering, or in whatever medium you feel comfortable with. Everyone is welcome to this party!