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About Webmaster

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    Fixer of Broken Things
  • Birthday 06/07/1981

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  1. With the launch of STSF v3.0, I've taken the opportunity to go back and work on some things to improve the overall security of the website. Starting today, all communication with the STSF server will be encrypted via TLS (formerly known as SSL). The benefits of this include: Better overall security (someone sitting between you and the STSF servers cannot intercept/modify requests). Improved SEO (Google is starting to penalize sites not making use of SSL and ranking them lower in it's search listings). Now... the only downside to this is that not all operating system and web browser combinations support this higher level of security. (I'm using the same cipher suites and encryption protocols used by the major banks.) As a result, the following browser/operating system combinations are no longer supported by STSF: Android 4.3 or below IE6 (Windows XP) IE7 (Vista) IE8 (XP) IE 8-10 (Windows 7) Safari 6.04 or below (Mac) In case anyone is wondering.... we currently have an A+ on the Qualys SSL Labs scanner: https://www.ssllabs.com/ssltest/analyze.html?d=www.stsf.net&hideResults=on Compare that to Bank of America who currently only has an A- with the same test: https://www.ssllabs.com/ssltest/analyze.html?d=www.bankofamerica.com&hideResults=on
  2. Search should now be working. With the launch of STSF 3.0, I've had a chance to look at the search fields and give them an update. When searching for "excalibur", I now see over 2,000 results returned. NOTE: Searches require a minimum of three characters. (This is a MySQL database limitation.)
  3. The year was 2002... Halle Berry became the first black actress to win the Academy Award for Best Actress, Ben Affleck was People’s Sexiest Man Alive, and Michael Jackson caused an international controversy after he dangled Prince Michael II off the balcony of his hotel room in Berlin. It was also the year in which I launched the first release of the STSF website. In 2002... the rebels were in the process of launching their revolt against it's AOL overlords and there was not much time. So I had to whip up something quickly to get us started. Time was short and we needed a competitive advantage or all hope would be lost. The site may not have been pretty, but it got the job done. The rebels found a home and now were armed with the tools they needed to wage their war against the oppressive overlords that sought to destroy the online role playing world. It was not until the next year in 2003 that I had a chance to go back to the drawing board and try again at making a site that reflected who we were as a community. Version 2.0 was a bold statement for us as a group... it told people we were here to stay and that we had what it took to make it on our own without having to live within the sheltered world of AOL. We had everything that we needed, including sponsorship from StarTrek.com, our own message boards, chat rooms actually provided by StarTrek.com, and of course the people with passion and love for the game. Over the next 14 years, there were many changes made to the site such as upgrading the technology that we used for the forums and chat rooms, introducing a new logo based on the Federation rose logo, and more. However at the end of the day, the general framework itself for the site remained. It was a source of comfort and familiarity for the veterans who survived overthrowing their former overlords. As much as the site and its design was liked, the time has come to refresh it once again. Much has changed over the last decade and the underlying code of the site was not built to run on the latest and greatest technology. Java has been depreciated by all of the major browser makers, the site was built during a time when no one had a mobile device or tried to access the site on-the-go and updating content on the website itself was a major pain as it involves manually editing raw HTML code potentially across dozens of webpages. Today I'm proud to introduce Version 3.0 of the STSF website. It has been rebuilt from the ground up with a fresh/modern feel while still retaining elements of its nostalgic past. I've focused on user interaction and hopefully managed to give users the ability to better express themselves. New features in the 3.0 release include: HTML5-based chat rooms An embedded chatroom that is folded right into the STSF site to quickly get started chatting. A floating chat window that can be popped open and resized for those that like a little more space. A mobile chat experience for those that want to chat from their mobile devices. Chatroom logs are automatically sent nightly to each sim's GMs, if their room has had any messages entered into it within the last 24 hours. The website is fully responsive and displays nicely on mobile devices. A new simple/clean skin with the ability for users to pick from 4 different available backgrounds. (Just click on the paintbrush on the upper right hand side of the screen to pick your background.) Users have the ability to be more expressive with custom profile pages. While users have always been able to pick avatars, they can now more fully customize their profile page very similar to how you might if you were using Facebook. The About Us page now automatically updates to display GMs based on those who have had their user account flagged as a GM. The Schedule page and side bar schedule on each page are centrally managed from a single location. (No more editing dozens and dozens of pages in multiple places if a change is made.) Each event on the schedule page can be customized with its own cover artwork and description. If a GM would like to customize their listing or add additional promotion text, let @Atragon9 or myself know. You can see an example of the customized cover art at the RES Talon schedule page. Within the forums, a new and improved editor is included. If you copy/paste something, its formatting will by default be retained, however you can remove it by clicking a notice at the bottom of the window. Much much more... There are so many little things, it would be impossible to document them all. I hope you enjoy not only the look and feel of the new site, but also the new capabilities we have. If you run into problems, or spot something that I missed in the transition, please let me know.
  4. If you're seeing this message, the upgrade is complete. While the majority of the functionality has been restored, there may be a few areas that still need to be tweaked.
  5. until
    Space Port Aegis Event Location: Discord Channel #space-port-aegis Time: 10 PM ET Captain: Captain Sylfaen First Officer: Nijil tr'Korjata
  6. until
    USS Manticore Event Location: Discord Channel #manticore Time: 10 PM ET Captain: Captain McFly First Officer: Kansas Kenickie http://stsf.net/manticore
  7. until
    USS Excalibur Event Location: Discord Channel #excalibur Time: 10 PM ET Captain: Cptn Swain First Officer: Cdr Miranda Hawthorne
  8. until
    USS Arcadia Event Location: Discord Channel #arcadia Time: 10 PM ET Captain: Captain Lo'Ami First Officer:
  9. As someone in the Washington, DC metro area... I felt it over here as well. Though it should be fine. Everything appears to be business as normal from what I've seen.
  10. Do you have firewall port restrictions in place on your ISP? Some ISPs might block the ports used by the chat rooms. Once you've installed Java as well, you might need to restart your browser as well.
  11. Regarding RSS... I can create feeds of any individual forums or group of forums. I created one for example just for the "From the GMs" forum called "STSF Announcements". If there are specific forum feeds folks want, it's not overly difficult to create them.
  12. This should be complete. There are some final tweeks I need to run through in the settings, but it should be good enough to let me go to sleep before work tomorrow. :)
  13. The boards are semi-back online. It's rebuilding hundreds of thousands of posts and still running in the background. This will take several hours. There are some issues with language template bits I'm still working on. That will most likely be resolved sometime tomorrow as I can't do it while the posts are rebuilding.
  14. The last time I saw this problem, the person had their IE settings set too high. Personally I would recommend trying a different browser other than IE. Firefox, Chrome, Safari.... ANYTHING but IE. :D
  15. There was a kernel panic caused following an automated system update. The system was rebooted and as it's been longer than a year since the last time the file system was checked, the OS forced a file system check (fsck). This added about 15-25 minutes to the downtime as the hard drive was scanned for possible bad blocks or file system corruption. (Think of this as a Windows scan disk and defrag.) Regardless, it's online and all is well.