Hello, GameDev.net members.
We are in the process of upgrading the site software and some cost-saving changes to our servers. For the next few weeks I want to provide some more information on the changes involved and ask for feedback from the community.
As for the upgrade itself, our current database is replicated to the new server. As part of the replication process we are transforming data from the current database to the new software's database to complete the conversion. We're now reaching a point where we need to make decisions regarding how data is organized before we can consider the replication 100%. These decisions also affect the skin and layout of the new site, which we haven't started - so we've arrived to a point where decisions must be made.
So today, I want ask for opinions on site organization. We're considering a major shift from the current organization, which aside from minor additions and tweaks has been around since the start of GameDev.net in 1999. In case you weren't around the games industry at that time, things have changed quite a bit since then and the topics of interest have changed as well.
Right now the site is organized into 3 main areas:
The forums have a 4th category for Community.
Our proposal looks like this:
What this would do is to elevate some of the more hidden areas of GameDev.net - things like Art, Audio, Education.
The implementation of this is TBD, but of course we're open to feedback. One approach we're considering is a multi-tier setup where these are the major categories but it's the second level where specific topics provided - similar to today's organization. For example, the Programming category might have as sub-categories:
- Math & Physics
Why make these changes?
We could continue as things are, but we feel that our current taxonomy does not address the reality of today's games industry or the technologies involved in game development. We feel that GameDev.net needs to evolve as the industry evolves.
This is one of several major changes under consideration, but we don't want to make these decisions in complete isolation. We have a fantastic community here with a lot of great ideas. Please, leave your thoughts in the comments below if you'd like to influence the decision making process.