Greetings everyone! It has been a while since we have done any MAJOR updates to the website. Minor changes are constant, but the major ones, well, let’s say we were a bit overdue on an issue that has been keeping us busy for over 6 months, but we have finally come up with a solution.
What was the problem, I hear you ask? Well the community Projects… Not the fact that we have or get them, and people keep sending them in, oh no, We love that! But the fact that we kept on getting more and more shared projects to upload and share with the community. The way we organized it in the past was to create a page, put a download link on it and link it in the menu. This worked great as long as we only had about 25-30 downloads there and tidy in a menu.
Over time this menu has grown significantly, in some places to such extent the menu would “fall off the page” itself and had to be further subdivided in more and more subcategories. We’re at the point it has become unmanageable to keep doing it this way. So we have (finally) found a solution by means of a plugin that is intended for shopping, but can also be made into a download repository.
In setting up this system, we also have decided to make the it more easily navigable to not separate everything out by letter, but by geographical location. And for those projects that do not fall under the “realistic” category, we have made the “fantasy” category.
The new system has some great advantages:
- It allows for per-project reviews. You can now “rate” routes based on your experience and comment on them.
- We can now add more than one image per project. Not that we will use this option much (Bandwidth, download speed, etc.), but it’s possible.
- Download counter retention over multiple versions; If a new version is released, the download counter won’t start at 0, but continues counting from the moment it was first published. This makes counting total downloads a LOT easier for the more popular downloads.
- We can use the projects in ACTUAL showcases, as in the LATEST new additions are shown first and the oldest last or the other way around.
- You can now sort by popularity, title, newest and many more. More options will be added in the future of course.
For those of you who have personal pages linking to the project pages, we ask that as the new projects become available in the new system, you update your links as they will eventually break in the not too distant future.
TL;DR: We’re re-organizing the downloads of all the submitted projects into a better system for managing the increased volume we have received over the years. The old system and pages will be slowly phased out.
Thank you all for supporting RailwayOperationSimulator for all these years. Albert and myself appreciate this a lot.