Friday with Means - May 8th, 2009
This was an "interesting" week. "Interesting" is going to have to be the word of choice as anything else would possibly being sensored by my own moderators.
When AO was in development way back in 1998 (date and license number determined by a small piece of paper found at a previous employee's home office.)...the decision was made to go with C-Tree to store our in game resources...that Database you all happily rip every time we release an update to see the new candy. Metaing was kind enough to point out at the end of last week that this version of C-Tree had a size limit of 2 Gigs. Size limit really meaning "put more in it and it will do very, very bad things." Our current resource database is currenly hovering at about 1.9 Gigs.
My options were to never add new graphical resources to AO...or Panic. I chose to Panic.
In 1998 2 Gigs was "Forever!" amounts of space...today this is obviously no longer the case. C-Tree has performed well for us over the last 9 years or so...so we have never had any reason to contact them about anything. I was pleased to find out that the company still existed (a good start!) and that they had more recent versions of the format that supported a larger capacity (large files...they tell me.) and better yet that the conversion process was straight-forward and reasonably painless. The fact that new pricing of C-tree now indicated that the new cost would be $5 per player was surprising.
When I recovered enough to stand I was happy to find that the C-Tree european manager was more than willing to be flexible with pricing to allow us to continue to use their excellent product. I do owe him a T-Shirt and a tour of the FC Oslo offices when he is in town....thank you Franco.
Thank-you Macrosun for working to reverse engineer the "lost" client build code to accomodate this update to the client RDB. Not fun..we know..and we all appreciate it. A /facepalm emote inspired by this event will be coming to the AO client in the near future.
This has resulted in *gasp* delays this week. We had been hoping to have the first views of instanced Pande, balancing, a new apartment and other 18.1 updates on TestLive this week but unfortunately this will now be coming next week instead.
The good news is that it seems to be all in viable shape and I am looking forward to seeing it on Test next week. It is likely I will need to "borrow" some guilds from the live dimensions to test it fully...any volunteer guilds would be appreciated. *hint hint*
Have a great weekend!
Colin "Means" Cragg
This friday with Means can also be found in the Anarchy Online Forums.