Wow, it's over 2 months since I last updated. Sorry about that, >_>HTML:[img]http://188.8.131.52/~hostpoke/xnews/images/gary.jpg[/img]
So, yeah. The main reason is that about a week after Platinum came out in Japan, I moved to England and started Uni here. Needless to say, I've spent much of the last two months settling in and getting into my Uni work.
Part of that Uni work has involved a lot of design practice - which is why you can now find me on DeviantArt at http://doctoroak.deviantart.com/ with my latest examples of designs for various things. This also includes web design, which brings me to the main point of this update.
I'm working on a new design for Pokecharms - and with it a lot of changes to the site. You can see a working example of the design here and how it will look on the forums here.
I make special note of the forums bit because the integration between the main site and the forums will be ramped up massively through this design. You will be logged into the forums the entire time you're visiting Pokecharms, and the forums will - by default - feature the site design and navigation to bring everything together.
This will have massive implications at a later date for future features - but I wont say anything solid about those until much closer the time.
Part of this redesign is a redesign of Pokecharms' content in general. The Games section, you'll notice, is no longer present on the new design's navigation.
This section has plagued me for years now. An ambition with Pokecharms has always been to make it as unique as possible - but the games section itself is inherently not unique at all. I've attempted displaying the information in a unique way, but when it comes down to it - it's still all stuff that other sources like The Bulbapedia provide in a much fuller and simpler way.
As such, instead of struggling to compete and think up impossible ways to redesign what's basically static information, I've simply dropped the section from the site.
From the new design's launch, Pokecharms will be entirely focused on community and unique web applications such as the Trainer Card Maker and a redesigned Pokedex - and hopefully everyone will be on board to make that new focus a success.
One final note to make about the new design is that the news, once the design is running live across the whole site, will be generated through the forums (as seen in the design example. This will eradicate problems we've had in the past concerning how the news displays, the comments system not working right and archiving not working correctly. It will also help to reinforce the unification of the forums and the rest of the site.
As such, I'm posting this news item into our new News forum as well - where you may comment on it and where it shall be archived within the new system. You can find that topic here: http://www.pokecharms.com/forums/index.php?topic=5164.0
I'll try not to take too long to update again, folks. But the next time I do, it will probably be with the new design. And finally a major thanks to Katie, Sem and Ed who have been keeping the site updated for me in recent weeks in my absence.