Side 7 Side 7's Next Evolutionary Steps  
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SQL Statement -- SELECT user_accounts.*, user_account_personal_info.*, user_account_system_info.*, access_control_list.*, SUM(account_credit_transactions.amount) as account_credits, user_accounts.id as user_account_id, user_account_personal_info.modified_date as personal_info_modified_date FROM user_accounts LEFT JOIN user_account_personal_info ON user_account_personal_info.user_account_id = user_accounts.id LEFT JOIN user_account_system_info ON user_account_system_info.user_account_id = user_accounts.id LEFT JOIN access_control_list ON access_control_list.id = user_accounts.access_control_list_id LEFT JOIN account_credit_transactions ON account_credit_transactions.user_account_id = user_accounts.id WHERE user_accounts.id = ? GROUP BY account_credit_transactions.user_account_id
Parameters -- 2
Error: Error in: Library_global::do_standard_query Line 546
Query Execution failed!
Got error 28 from storage engine
SQL Statement -- SELECT user_accounts.*, user_account_personal_info.*, user_account_system_info.*, access_control_list.*, SUM(account_credit_transactions.amount) as account_credits, user_accounts.id as user_account_id, user_account_personal_info.modified_date as personal_info_modified_date FROM user_accounts LEFT JOIN user_account_personal_info ON user_account_personal_info.user_account_id = user_accounts.id LEFT JOIN user_account_system_info ON user_account_system_info.user_account_id = user_accounts.id LEFT JOIN access_control_list ON access_control_list.id = user_accounts.access_control_list_id LEFT JOIN account_credit_transactions ON account_credit_transactions.user_account_id = user_accounts.id WHERE user_accounts.id = ? GROUP BY account_credit_transactions.user_account_id
Parameters -- 17451
Error: Error in: Library_global::do_standard_query Line 546
Query Execution failed!
Got error 28 from storage engine
SQL Statement -- SELECT user_accounts.*, user_account_personal_info.*, user_account_system_info.*, access_control_list.*, SUM(account_credit_transactions.amount) as account_credits, user_accounts.id as user_account_id, user_account_personal_info.modified_date as personal_info_modified_date FROM user_accounts LEFT JOIN user_account_personal_info ON user_account_personal_info.user_account_id = user_accounts.id LEFT JOIN user_account_system_info ON user_account_system_info.user_account_id = user_accounts.id LEFT JOIN access_control_list ON access_control_list.id = user_accounts.access_control_list_id LEFT JOIN account_credit_transactions ON account_credit_transactions.user_account_id = user_accounts.id WHERE user_accounts.id = ? GROUP BY account_credit_transactions.user_account_id
Parameters -- 10907
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Side 7's Next Evolutionary Steps



BadKarma

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Total Posts: 542
Subject: Side 7's Next Evolutionary Steps Posted: 29 Jul 2011 - 14:27 ET



So, I've started the process of redesigning the site from the ground up. The site as it stands is very much "old school", and is in a web format that is becoming more and more antiquated and abandoned. And, by abandoned, I don't just mean web designers. I mean web users and visitors, too. Slick interfaces, AJAX, and other features that no longer require the complete reloading of pages are the draw, and honestly, rightfully so. Also, social media has taken a strong hold and has fast become the way in which we as a society prefer to deal with our interactions on the web.


To that end, I'm working on a re-envisioning of Side 7. The focus of both the way in which we run the site and the site's design will always be about the art; art first, supported by the artist community. But, with that said, we can change the way in which we present those features, and give users easier and more intuitive ways in which to interact, share, and participate on the site.


All of the current features will remain, although some of them may evolve to a more efficient or design-compatible format. All of the data and uploads will also remain and be migrated to the new format.


There are a lot of things that I'm hoping to be able to do with this reformat, and to be honest, I hope it breathes new life into the site. I am under no illusions that Side 7 will ever be as big as other art sites, nor do I expect that it will ever have the funding or support that they have. However, I made a promise a long time ago that if even only one person still finds value in the site, I would continue to maintain it. Right now, that number can be counted on a singular hand. And, the site is back to a one-person crew, me. But, maybe this effort will rebuild the attractiveness of the site, and the sense of community and interaction that it once had.


To that end, I'm taking a page out of the book used by many an MMO: micro-transactions. Side 7's account structure is changing. Here's a very rough, basic run-down on how things will work:

Non-basic features on Side 7 will be available for acquisition for a certain amount of Account Credits (whose name might be changing, I haven't decided). Once acquired via Account Credits, the feature is available to your account forever. Free accounts (1 Star) will have access to the basic features, only.


5 Star accounts will become monthly subscription accounts that gain access to every feature on the site, instantly. But those accounts don't "own" the features. As long as the 5 Star subscription is maintained, full access is maintained. If a 5 Star account runs out, it'll convert to a 3 Star account, which will basically be a 1 Star account with a small set up added features included. That account will never drop back down to a 1 Star account. Any features that weren't acquired through Account Credits, or through the 3 Star account, however will no longer be available until acquired or a 5 Star account subscription is renewed.


I hope that's not confusing. But, it works for MMOs, and there are a lot of business models surrounding that structure that will make things easier and more affordable for users. Why buy features you'll never use? Get just the ones you care about, for a far smaller fee than a subscription, and not worry about continual payments. Also, this gives us the ability to run specials and discounts on certain features frequently.


Either way, this is a big project. I have a project plan in place, and if I can work on it steadily (probably unlikely, between 3 kids, school and work (when I find it again)), will likely take 6-9 months to get the first phase launched. I'm still looking for a reliable, dedicated Perl programmer who I would be able to delegate some of the work to. I do need that help.


Your comments and questions are welcome. I invite any feedback on this. As always, I can be reached via Instant Messenger: (AIM) armitige3, (Yahoo! IM) badkarmas7, e-mail: badkarma /@/ side7 /./ com, and via the Side 7 forums and private messages.


My Side 7 Gallery | Personal Site
Alliat



Total Posts: 1
Subject: RE: Side 7's Next Evolutionary Steps Posted: 29 Jul 2011 - 18:03 ET



Wow! I had totally forgotten about this place when I got this newsletter today. I have good memories from this site and it's great to see all my old artwork again. I'll be uploading my sketches here again now that I have you bookmarked and re-integrated into my memory.
Navi1101

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Total Posts: 101
Subject: RE: Side 7's Next Evolutionary Steps Posted: 29 Jul 2011 - 21:08 ET



... I don't mean to sound like an ass, but I don't really see (unless you're working on other things that you're not telling us ^^; ) how this is a microtransaction model and not a subscription model.

This is a spiffy idea, don't get me wrong, but I think the model you're talking about is more like, 1-star accounts have 2 uploads per day, but can buy additional uploads for $0.10 each to use whenever (that day, if they want), or can buy a pack of 12 extra uploads to use any time for like $1.00 and get a slight discount. Or they can pay for a month of 5-star access and have unlimited uploads for that month.

Maybe there could be other individual paid features too, like uploads are by default reduced to 1024x1024, but you can pay $0.25 to have your pic upload at full res. Another $0.25 will add a Download button, so people who, say, want to use your image as a wallpaper can contact you within the site and you can send them a copy, again within the site, instead of having to broker the permission and transaction via email. $0.10 might buy images listed for sale a spot in a special Print Gallery, a separate part of the site that makes it easier to find art that's for sale and contact the artists about purchasing it. Best of all, allow people to buy a package of account credits so they don't have to whip out the credit card or PayPal every time they want to purchase something (kind of like Microsoft Points).

Since 5-star accounts would get all this for free, it'd also be useful to track the average number of each type of microtransaction per month, then make the cost of a 5-star account slightly less than the total of all the averages, so above-average purchasers will find it worthwhile and below-average purchasers can stick to getting one thing at a time.

All these examples and prices are just examples (suggestions?), of course; I don't know how much server space we have to support this kind of stuff or how drastically you want to change the site's business model. But when you mention paying for only the features you want, this is more like what I think of.
This Post Has Been Edited 1 Time. - Last Modified: 29 Jul 2011 - 21:10 ET
BadKarma

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Total Posts: 542
Subject: RE: Side 7's Next Evolutionary Steps Posted: 30 Jul 2011 - 13:58 ET



Hi Navi,

You're misunderstanding the micro-transaction model.

Let me try to re-explain:

Say you have a 1 Star account. That account gets all the basic features by default. But, say you wanted the Account Backup feature as well, so that you can back up all of your uploads, received comments, etc. For a one-time Account Credit fee (and you will still be able to earn Account Credits through site interaction, or buy bulk Account Credit bundles), you can add the Account Backup feature to your account. Once you buy it, it'll be a part of your account forever, no matter if you end up upgrading to a 5 Star account and then are downgraded to a 3 Star account, or if you stay a 1 Star account forever.

Things like upload extensions (extra image uploads) would be done in increments, and once an extension is bought, it will always apply.

A 5 Star account is a subscription that takes a 1 Star account, and grants access to all features so long as the 5 Star subscription continues. No need to earn up Account Credits or buy them to add features; they're all available immediately, but the account doesn't "own" the features. Some people prefer it that way. It's a matter of immediate satisfaction VS saving up and permanently adding features. Time VS money.

Does that help answer your concerns?

-- BK


My Side 7 Gallery | Personal Site
Weasel_Silver24

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Total Posts: 57
Subject: RE: Side7's Next Evolutionary Steps Posted: 01 Aug 2011 - 09:14 ET



BadKarma wrote:
Non-basic features on Side 7 will be available for acquisition for a certain amount of Account Credits (whose name might be changing, I haven't decided). Once acquired via Account Credits, the feature is available to your account forever. Free accounts (1 Star) will have access to the basic features, only.


Okay, "whose name name might be changing" part, what does that mean? The "Account Credits"? Are thinking of changing the account credits to something else?

The idea that you were talking about, don't sound too bad... As long as one can buy the features through credits, and not so much through actual cash.
BadKarma

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Total Posts: 542
Subject: RE: Side 7's Next Evolutionary Steps Posted: 01 Aug 2011 - 10:44 ET



The name of the Account Credits might be changing. I might come up with some kind of silly "currency" name, like "SideBucks" or something dumb like that. ;) Something a little catchier than Account Credits.

All feature transactions will take place through the use of Account Credits. If one is to use cash, it's simply to buy Account Credits or to pay for a 5 Star subscription.

-- BK


My Side 7 Gallery | Personal Site
brokenever



Total Posts: 3
Subject: RE: Side 7's Next Evolutionary Steps Posted: 09 Sep 2011 - 08:59 ET



Oh please please don't use SideBucks... that makes it sound like you're selling deer! ;)
BadKarma

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Total Posts: 542
Subject: RE: Side 7's Next Evolutionary Steps Posted: 09 Sep 2011 - 13:18 ET



brokenever wrote:
Oh please please don't use SideBucks... that makes it sound like you're selling deer! ;)


Hehehe! I am certainly open to suggestions!


My Side 7 Gallery | Personal Site


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