As you may notice, there have been a few changes around here. In fact, pretty much everything has changed.
But fear not! The website’s new incarnation follows the earlier version’s design philosophy and should be familiar to use. If you do have problems finding anything, tell me. You can get in touch with me either here in the comments section or by email at admin-at-akirakurosawa.info (replace -at- with @).
Although things pretty much work like they used to, almost everything has actually been rebuilt from the ground up. I have tested the new code on my test server as much as I have been able to, but it certainly is possible that some technical issues may remain now that we have gone live. If you encounter any problems or see something that you think you shouldn’t be seeing, let me know.
The main reasons for the update were stability, security and flexibility. We should now be more modern, slightly faster and definitely more robust in terms of fighting off the bad guys. Also, the code base is easier to update in the future.
As an added bonus, I have brought us into the 21st century and included support for mobile devices. No longer is the website entirely useless when accessed through your mobile phone. Although if you still think so, do tell me.
The great purge of December 2014
Another big change is that I have gone on a killing spree and removed a large number of member accounts. This was done partly due to security reasons and partly to protect the privacy of those who registered on the website years ago but never became active members.
So, if you have never posted on the website and hadn’t logged in during 2014, your user account has been deleted. If you have logged in this year, or if you have posted even once, your account hasn’t been touched. If you find otherwise, drop me a line and I’ll sort it out.
The registered member count currently stands at 149.
Something that isn’t currently working, and in fact hadn’t been working for a while now, is email notifications for news articles. I am working on a solution to re-enabling them, but it may take a while, as I want to take my time to consider and test the options.
In fact, what will happen before email notifications is a social media presence of some sorts, which will help those with Facebook and Twitter accounts to stay in touch with this website. I will tell you more about that soon. Well, fairly soon, anyway.
Meanwhile, the RSS feeds of course still work just like they used to. With one exception: the RSS feed addresses for individual topics have changed. Sorry about that.
I have never really known what to call this website. When I rebooted it from the ashes of an older website, it was a simple blog and I called it “Akira Kurosawa News” (AKN), because that’s what it was about. I then added some other content and it became “Akira Kurosawa News and Info” (AKNI). Finally, when you asked me to set up a forum, we became “Akira Kurosawa: News, Information and Discussion” (AKNID), which is also reflected in the website structure. But that’s quite a mouthful to say.
With the update, I have now settled for “Akira Kurosawa info”, or “ak.info” among friends. It nicely reflects the website’s domain name, as well. I will still be using the old subtitle “News, Information and Discussion” where appropriate.
It’s perhaps not a big deal, but at least now I have a clearer idea what to call this website. It only took me about a decade. I’m not very good with names.
The immediate future will be all about observing whether you guys are able to break the website, or if things are actually working like they should be. So, I appreciate any feedback that you have.
I’m also working on the social media side of things. This year, it has become increasingly clear that we could do with a little bit of fresh blood and more activity on the website. So, I’ll be trying to attract some new visitors, and I would of course appreciate it if you could do the same. A blog post or a Facebook link already spreads the word nicely.
The coming year will be interesting, not least because we will be finishing the current run of our film club, and will therefore need to start discussing titles for the next round sometime in early 2015. I am also planning on concentrating a bit on the Information section here to add some new content that I have been gathering over the years. Of course, considering that it took me more than two years to pull off this technical update, I wouldn’t necessarily hold my breath waiting for those content updates.
Anyway, right now I’m just happy to have the software update more or less finished. Do let me know your thoughts about the new look!