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#286460 05/25/2004 2:52 PM
Joined: Aug 2000
Posts: 3,590
Joined: Aug 2000
Posts: 3,590
Catching up to CC
By: Allen Ayres

Editor's Note: Charles is the principal developer of ubb.classic and has been since the early days of 6.0x-something. Getting new info out of him is like hoping for a new vb release in less than 3 years wink I give it the college try a few times and wiggle a bit more out. Here's the results:

AA :: You've stuck with perl over the years while a lot of programmers jumped to php... what is keeping you using perl and not the latest acronym_coding_language_du_jour?

CC :: PHP sucks.

Er. I suppose you want a real answer for that, then? smile

The primary reason that we remain in Perl is that we're already in Perl - around 100,000 lines of code & templates in total, 2/3 of which has been added in the past two and a half years. The very thought of starting all over in another language makes me very, very nervous.

AA :: How's work going on it? Sounds like some major changes are coming even before 6.8/7...

CC :: Well, we're pausing development to work on a 6.7.2 release. There are some changes to the importer to go along with Eve 1.1, and we're updating the importer in Classic to go along with the changes in Eve. There may also need to be a new Threads release to make the changes as well. (It is not clear at this time if Eve 1.1 will get out the door before Threads 6.5 goes final.)

AA :: Will people need to upgrade to 6.7.2 to be able to move to threads/eve? Someone said the importers disappeared from ubbcentral

CC :: The UBB.classic to UBB.threads importer is still available - it's linked from the Member Area.

While using the new import/export tools built into the control panels is the most trouble-free method of migrating your data, there are a number of things that only the custom importer brings over (i.e. moderators, private messages). We have not yet decided if we will be retiring the custom importer in the future. Certain parts of it - such as the ban lists - will no longer properly work in Threads 6.5.
Oh, and to more directly answer the question:

If you wish to use the official importer/exporter in Threads 6.5 to move from Classic, then you will need to be running Classic 6.7.

AA :: The new exporter/importer doesn't bring moderators or pm's yet? How about styles?

CC :: The importer/exporter ONLY transfers members, categories, forums, and posts.

All other information is not stored in any sort of common ways in any product (any being both ourselves and our competition), and is therefore impossible to reliably grab. The idea behind the importer/exporter is that almost everyone stores at least the basic data in a sane, predictable way, so we can guarantee that we can pull in that data properly.
(Example: We have vars_style files. Eve has database tables. Threads has ... CSS.)

AA :: Does IP have any plans for a universal styles system between products? I understand it's really only useful at import time for the most part, but would help quite a bit then smile

CC :: That would be a really nice thing to have... but due to the very different ways that our three products currently store and implement styles, it's not currently on the todo list.

Even then, we'd only really be able to bring over maybe the dozen colors and the fonts. Virtually no images are shared. (And even then, the colors are not always used it the same ways, so the end result may look less than spectacular.)

AA :: hehe, put Rosemary on the job, she'll whip you guys into shape to using the same images and color styles, they could put judd on something else then wink

As we come to a major milestone in the development of the truly .classic forum software, are you excited about how far we've come over the last several years?
Besides the pay wink , what keeps you hurrying in to work on a daily basis?
How can you concentrate with such a great view outside the Infopop offices?

CC :: Am I excited? No. I'm actually disappointed that it took me this long to finally scratch so many long requested features off the to-do list. It's taken three years to catch up with the feature requests first made during 6.0 development. Why so long? Simple - I'm the one and only developer working on UBB.classic.

I love my job here at Infopop. It's really a labor of love. (That being said, my real passion is creating code, something that I don't actually end up spending much time doing, on average.)

Oh, and the Infopop offices haven't had a view since we moved last March. smile My current view is a brick wall.

AA :: Speaking of milestones, how do you feel about the future of the ubb.classic software?

CC :: I'm very optimistic. Lots of cool stuff is in the pipeline.

AA :: Any general idea of where we're headed you can share?

CC :: Not one that I can share. The next major release will really please lots of people.

AA :: Arghh... I see I'm gonna get the Sargent Schultz "I know notheeng! I see notheeng!" treatment, I'll try an end around wink What are some personal goals you have for the software we love so much?

CC :: All of my goals are centered around the way the code works. I'd like to see EVERYTHING run under strict. I'd like to move us to a real model/view/controller model, which implies switching to an architecture based around Perl modules (i.e. objects). Etc, etc, etc. All real boring stuff that wouldn't really make the board act any different. Sorry. wink

Of course, the M/V/C thing is a major 7.0-style change. Not that we have 7.0 plans. wink

AA :: (A clue?) Soon, Eve customers will have the ability to link to the Groupee single sign-on service, which we've all been using for Community and the UBBCentral boards. Will UBB.classic customers be able to link their boards up to Groupee?

CC :: I can't give you an absolute answer on that. Clearly, it is possible for UBB.classic (and UBB.threads) to talk to Groupee, as we do it at UBBCentral. While I'd personally love to see every Infopop customer plug their boards into Groupee, we have not made an official decision on whether or not we'll make it possible for our downloadable products.

AA :: I'll post a few words/ short phrases.. reply with the first thing that pops into your head:

- perl

CC :: Love!

AA :: php


AA :: haha! laugh

- spam

CC :: Thunderbird rocks.

AA :: star trek

CC :: Gods, I hope Enterprise doesn't get canceled...

AA :: thinkgeek

CC :: Swag!


AA :: Away from the computer, what do you like to do?

CC :: When am I ever away from the computer? %)

I occasionally go out and spend random time with friends, doing random things. Last weekend, we went to a park and ... played chess (won) & Scrabble (got my rear end handed to me). Yup, still a geek.

AA :: Are you into any sports like watching the mariners, or sonics, or seahawks?

CC :: Watching? Sure. Just don't ask me to play. I like watching football and baseball though. And basketball sucks. wink

AA :: Are you as sick of the presidential race 6 months out as the rest of us?

CC :: I was sick of it six months ago! It's come down to a choice between lesser of two evils, and no matter who wins, America will be unhappy.

AA :: Any cool websites you've run across lately you'd like to share?

CC :: -

Really, that's the most "that is SO COOL!" site I've seen of late. The version up currently lets you drag and resize the boxes, while the original one did not. Firefox/Mozilla required.


"IE7" is a DHTML Behavior (a Microsoft extension) that you can attach to your HTML documents that adds numerous CSS selectors, attributes, etc. Basically, it brings IE's poor CSS support up to par with Mozilla. Cool stuff. There's lots of other things elsewhere on the site, including a similar addon for Mozilla that lets it uses most DHTML Behaviors.

Am I a geek or what?

AA :: I plead the 5th tipsy Thanks Charles, now get back to work wink

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