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Welcome to Codidact Meta!

Codidact Meta is the meta-discussion site for the Codidact community network and the Codidact software. Whether you have bug reports or feature requests, support questions or rule discussions that touch the whole network – this is the site for you.

June 2022 Newsletter

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This newsletter was sent to our email subscribers and is being reposted here.

Hello from the Codidact team! It's been a while since we sent out a newsletter (sorry!). We want to share some updates, including news about the long-awaited server upgrade made possible by very generous donors.

Server Upgrade

Ever since we got set up with bank accounts late last year, one of our priorities for our new funding has been to migrate our servers. For context, since the start, all Codidact communities have been running on a single server provided by one of our volunteers. Now that we have funding, it's time to address that, and while we're making changes anyway, we'll upgrade to beefier servers to improve performance.

This project is now underway. Our sysadmin team have planned out what we want our architecture to look like, we've bought the server capacity, and we're on the way to setting it up. We've got the software running on the new servers; the next step will be to take a recent backup from our current server, restore it on the new environment, and make sure everything works as expected. After we've done that test, we'll announce a maintenance window and make the move for real. We'll update this post on our blog as we get closer.

Donations

This move is possible because we have received very generous donations, both one-time and ongoing. We'll be able to pay the new server bills for the foreseeable future. We are gratified and humbled by the support we have received! Many donors choose to remain anonymous, but we've set up a page on codidact.org where we can publicly thank those who've allowed us to name them. As you'll see there, we are part of the GitHub Sponsors program, in addition to being able to accept one-time donations via credit card.

Technical Roadmap

For a while we've lacked a clear development roadmap. Various people had goals in our heads, and some of our GitHub issues have priorities set, but that's not as helpful as it could be. Developers new to the platform don't know where to jump in, and unless you're also active on Discord, the community at large doesn't know what we're planning to tackle sooner versus later and how pieces fit together. We've finally begun to tackle that and have posted a technical roadmap. We reviewed outstanding requests for changes and other known issues and identified some broad themes, and laid out the next few rounds of development based on that.

When assembling a roadmap, we think it's important to consider the themes in parallel. It will take us a while to get where we want to go; that's expected. In each "leg" of the journey, we'll try to address some pain points and some gaps while we work on the (generally larger) features. Further, some of the features will need to be broken down into smaller pieces, which themselves become items on the roadmap.

In other words, we'll tackle larger goals that will really differentiate us when they're done, alongside addressing more immediate concerns that help our users and communities now. We don't want to get so mired in the here-and-now that we never get to the longer-term stuff, but we also don't want to only do the larger (probably more exciting) stuff, either. We'll start the longer-term work but also do nearer-term work.

Our development team is small, and we welcome new contributors to our open-source platform. If you're interested, drop us a line – you can comment on the roadmap post or comment on a GitHub issue that interests you. If you just want to fix that one bug that annoys you, we'll welcome it. If you want to do more, or work on larger projects, we'll welcome that too. We have a Q&A community (of course) and a project Discord server where you can ask for guidance. We'll never pressure you; everyone here is a volunteer who has choices about how to spend time, and we appreciate any that you're willing to spend on Codidact.

The primary repository on GitHub is https://github.com/codidact/qpixel .

Communities

We've launched a series of blog posts highlighting individual contributors to the Codidact project, as a way of drawing attention to the hard work that people are putting into our communities and platform and saying thank you. Our first post highlights one of our moderators and occasional code contributors. Look for more posts in the future.

Codidact is small now but we hope to grow all of our communities. We're trying to improve our search-engine placement, but we also hope to find better ways to directly reach the people who would be interested in our communities if only they knew about them. Word of mouth – happy community members talking with people who share their interests – is ideal when it happens, but what else can we do? We've asked each of our communities for help: if we could invest in some advertising for your community, where should we direct it and what message would best reach that audience? We'd welcome suggestions from our newsletter subscribers too; you can reply to this email or, if you use our Meta community, leave a comment when this newsletter is posted in the Blog category.

Thank you, once again, for helping our communities grow and for helping to build and maintain our platform.

The Codidact Team
https://codidact.org

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