At 8/7/06 03:15 PM, Evark wrote:
Whereas (I assume) Ross will be programming new features and James will be cleaning them up and making them super-efficient.
I'm guessing that this is in reference to what's written in the Literature page, in particularly, this part:
"James tore in like an animal, overhauling and optimizing everything in sight."
Whilst this is true in certain respects, you have got to keep several things in mind:
1. I started looking at the code on the site over a year after Ross had left. The development of the Internet and software used on it can progress in leaps and bounds in that short amount of time.
Some of the changes that I made to the site code back in 2002 and onward were complete re-writes (which took time), but some of the most important parts of those re-writes were adding keys to database fields that had not been previously assigned. These changes were relatively quick, but very cost effective when it came to saving work that the database had to do.
2. Newgrounds' popularity increased exponentially (against all odds, with respect to keeping the site online due to advertising revenue slumps) shortly after Ross' initial departure from the site. Code that would have otherwise have worked perfectly on the site at the time he was working there suddenly became an issue. This is something you can only learn after reading error logs and what not, which he'd never previously have seen when he'd been on the site.
3. Ross was my inspiration for exploring PHP/Perl and other programming and scripting languages, after having seen what he'd done with Newgrounds. I owe whatever I have learned in those respects as a result of his work, way back when. He and I always had a decent level of e-mail correspondence back then, too.
4. Sometimes, it takes a fresh pair of eyes to look over code and realise when things could be done more efficiently. The same that could have been said of the code that was initially written and which I started looking at in 2002, and have been working on from there on in to the current day, can be said of the code I've written in the past few years of working for Newgrounds.
When I first started with the site, I had plenty of time to write new scripts, re-write old scripts and 'new' scripts. I don't have that luxury today, because there's so much to maintain and I deal with my fair share of correspondence from users.
I'm aware that there are problems with the code that runs on the site today and Ross has already identified a lot of areas of the site that could be made more efficient, that I would never have spotted. Whether or not that's down to him looking at the code again with fresh eyes, or because he's a lot more qualified, in more programming languages than I am is irrelevant - he's spotting things that I would have missed. In other words, the pendulum swings both ways, back with how things were with his code then, and how things are with mine now.
As far as what we all do for the site - that will always remain somewhat of a mystery, since we're a team. One thing I will say, though - the new level icons weren't only the work of Jeff and Stamper. Wade, who's renowned solely for banning and deleting users talked with Jeff a great deal about all of the icons that could be used there. People forget or are unaware that he's responsible for doing a lot more than he's credited for.
I noticed there was a post in the flash forums, where someone had decompiled the flash portal header (the 2004 one) and commented on the coding there. That was animated by Stamper. It made me chuckle when I read the thread, since the guy was convinced that Tom had programmed the swfs going into the "vortex" or whatever at the left of the animation. I did that. I think I'd used a deprecated function like getProperty or setProperty. C'est la vie. :)
All of us work incredibly hard and love doing what we're doing. I see posts now and then that seem to indicate that Tom might be a missing link somewhere, who doesn't really do a great deal. Haha - how wrong can those people be? He's around the site all the time, updating collections, making suggestions, implementing rough designs for things that will later be dealt with by the hands of the artists and then coders, etc, etc. And that's ON TOP of coding up ANOTHER console game AND dealing with more e-mails and private messages than the average human being gets AND dealing with a ton of clerical work in the office. Damnit, that man is a machine.