If I was in practice that headline would have been “Fear the Comix Dead” or some other mangled pun. I know the world did not notice (my statistics counter tell no lies) the absence of ComixTalk these last couple of years but a little bit of me did.
I never wanted the site to come down — no matter whether there is new content or not I’d really like to keep the archives up and available. But the site was on Drupal from about 2005 onwards (it was originally on POSTNUKE) and Drupal only got harder and harder to keep up with. No offense to the Drupal community – when I had time it was a fascinating piece of software to mess around with, but when I had much, much less time it was just too much to keep up. At some point there was a series of security holes (I’m sure all eventually patched) and I just took the site down. Life has been pretty busy these past years and while I thought about it a couple times I was nervous about bringing it back with the Drupal codebase because of the time commitment I feared it would create.
After Drupal made version 8 of its software even more complicated (so much so that it was forked by some developers who did not want to deviate from 7) I realized I needed to move this site over to WordPress. I have been blogging at Altertainment.net for several years now. That site runs on WordPress and it’s never given me a problem, it’s easy to update and WordPress adds features all the time (it’s community of users and developers seems much larger than Drupal). That’s not actually simple so I had to brush up on SQL and figure out how to get the content from the old database into a working version of WordPress. I had a lot of stumbles figuring it out, but I think I’ve got most of it up here now and it doesn’t seem to be too much of a mess. It’s a bit bare bones but it’s functional.
I plan to try and write some reviews again this year. Maybe blog a bit (although I’m quite happy blogging on a wider range of subjects at Altertainment.net). If anyone one else from the Comixpedia/Talk alumni or friends of the site wants to write or blog something here – let me know. It can be arranged.
Best wishes for the new year!
State of the Website
- Comments are closed on old posts but new posts should be fair game. I’ve noticed sometimes comments work and other times there are comments in the database for a post but they are not showing up. I’m sure there’s a reason but I have no idea right now.
- All of the old user accounts are here but I don’t think you can log in and use them right now. If you are interested in activating your account again let me know – I can fix them in small batches.
- Most but not all articles are properly matched up with their actual authors user accounts. Just a legacy of our changing practices (and changing code) over the years. Most of the reviews, interviews and features are properly tagged as such but probably not perfectly. I’ve discovered that categories don’t show up in the category list until I edit and save a post tagged with that category. Not sure why – not sure when I’ll get this fixed.
- I did not import most of the blog posts (but some of them). I probably will at some point.
- I did not import the forums.
It’s possible but that might be a bit more of project since WordPress doesn’t really do forums (although I think there are plug-ins that support it)I’ve installed BBPress which is pretty much a WordPress version of old school forums. Now I just have to figure out how to properly import the old forum content.
- I don’t think I got the events we used to do (like May Day) but I’m not sure. In any event they are not properly organized so that’s also a project.
- The old ComixPedia/TALK theme could probably be converted to a WordPress theme but that’s definitely a project.
- I did not import any of the genre, group, publisher, creator or webcomic tagging. It was horribly inconsistent on the old site. I’d like to add something, at least for webcomics and creators to this that is useful for anyone who wants to zero in on what we have in the archives.
The webcomics that were serialized on ComixPedia/Talk — also not sure if they’re here or not so that’s another project.I have added a page with links to the three comics we serialized on Comix Talk. It would be nice to add back/forward links to navigate each one separately.
- The cover art is in the file system and probably inconsistently in posts in the archives but I would like to add them to some kind of gallery but I’ll have to look into what works best on WordPress.