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A gaming and technology blog by TWHL admins Penguinboy and Ant. A music blog by TWHL users Ant and Hugh.

The Future of TWHL

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Forums > Site Comments and Suggestions

31 Jan 11, 06:49
By AJ
avatar
Glorious Overlord
First up: this isn't a doom and gloom post. We have some (hopefully) exciting news concerning the future of the site. So please, read through all this carefully and feel free to contribute in a mature and helpful way.

Your three awesome admin pals (that is, Penguinboy, Strider and myself) have long been discussing the future of TWHL. A bit of background: the three of us have been here for quite a while (myself since 2003). We developed the version of TWHL you see before you essentially from scratch in our spare time. The three of us all have full-time jobs and various other commitments, which I hope will explain the lack of updates sometimes.

However, the three of us have a vested interest in the site. I'm not alone in saying that, despite the occasional slip, we've got a great little community here.

Now, onto the nuts and bolts. As some of you are aware, we do not own the site. We do not own the domain, nor do we own the hosting. The original creator, atom, does. He created the site, as it says in our about page, as an 'experiment in PHP'. Given that we don't own the site (or even have full access to it for that matter), we are a bit limited in what we can do with it. We have attempted to get in touch with atom (who's curiously still paying for it all) but haven't had much luck.

As a result, we've come up with a bit of an idea. We are proposing that we move TWHL to a brand new site under a new name. I understand that there's a lot of sentimentality with the TWHL name, but we don't have much of a choice. We've explored options of purchasing a more prolific domain name for TWHL, but all the options are pretty much taken (twhl.com is being domain squatted for a ridiculous amount of money). We can't redirect the current domain to a new server either because, as mentioned earlier, we don't own it or have access to it.

So this is where we stand. We're essentially looking at making a completely fresh start, but with the same content and community. This will enable us to do far more with the site, including the possibility of branching into more engines, video tutorials and more.

This won't happen in the next week or anything, so don't panic. We're happy to read some suggestions on the next step (or even potential names for a new site), so feel free to contribute. I'm begging you though, please please PLEASE keep it civil. We're doing this for you for no tangible reward, so please respect this.
31 Jan 11, 07:17
By doodle
avatar
Member
This seemed a bit inevitable with the lack of access you guys have to the site.

I still think a similar name would be needed to draw in people who wonder where the site has gone. Maybe TheWHL? or TheWHLife?

Then again if you want more engines etc that's a different matter altogether.
31 Jan 11, 07:19
By AJ
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Glorious Overlord
We do have some control of the current site, so we can put up a page explaining it all.
31 Jan 11, 07:54
By potatis_invalid
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Member
I've been thinking about this too. I wouldn't want to one day visit twhl.co.za only to get the message "Web hosting account suspended" and not know where to go. I welcome this.
31 Jan 11, 08:59
By Skals
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Game / Level Designer
I think this is a good idea and would be for the best.
31 Jan 11, 11:27
By Striker
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Member
I think it's a great idea, but we should have a site theme that at least resembles this.
I am not happy with the changing of the name though, TWHL has a bit of history now and it'd be a shame to abandon it.

As for www.twhl.co.za, when the new site will be ready, you'll have to place a redirect to the new site when accessing the old one.

And as a fact that just came in my mind, I am proud to be a member half the site age old(registered in 2007, although I'm not sure if TWHL exists from 2002 or 2003).
31 Jan 11, 11:37
By Habboi
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Sticky White Love Glue
You know it is a bit weird that Atom never seems to get in contact with you lot and yet pays for hosting. I smell a mystery?
31 Jan 11, 11:43
By potatis_invalid
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Member
I'm quite happy with how TWHL3 functions and looks. It has some issues and I understand if Penguinboy don't want to touch his old code (I know the feeling). I only ask that you don't change too much in the next version.

Dimbark is Atom in disguise.
31 Jan 11, 12:09
By kdunivan
avatar
Member
Ok, I am confused and need to play more multiplayer or something to keep up with everything around here.

I just had conversation with Atom yesterday concerning a texture so I know he is at least logging on. And you guys can't communicate with him?

This sounds like a fight or a disagreement to me and possibly the direction of the website. None of my business....

I have to say that I quite enjoy coming here every morning, noon, and night to check to see what others like me are doing. I would really, really hate to see it go and would support whatever move there is to make.

Having said that, I have become quite attached to the name TWHL but it has become sort of a misnomer since it really isn't really the whole Half Life anymore. Like you said, there are more engines to add and alot of tutorials to catch up on. At least try and incorporate the old name.

I have built a few sites myself so I know the drill. It's alot of work that can get behind really quickly. I don't see how you all share this responsibility anyways; especially with no communication.

I wish you all the luck and please don't leave us in a lurch, we will find you eventually. What the hell else would we do with our days? LOL

@atom: what happens to this site now? come on.
31 Jan 11, 12:17
By RabidMonkey
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mapmapmapfapmap
the mighty atom =/= atom?

Seemed abit inevitable as doodle said...
31 Jan 11, 12:28
By The Mad Carrot
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Karottenjung
Im not the Atom Ant is talking about.

Atom: http://twhl.co.za/user.php?id=1
Me: http://twhl.co.za/user.php?id=469
31 Jan 11, 12:43
By kdunivan
avatar
Member
I am glad you cleared that up man! I was like duh, confused.....fo real.

many lols

Sorry...

I have never seen him on...

That definitely clears a few things...

www.thewholehalflife.com is available!
31 Jan 11, 12:48
By potatis_invalid
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Member
twhl.info and twhl.eu are also available, but I think a name change to something more simple is a good idea.
31 Jan 11, 12:49
By The Mad Carrot
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Karottenjung
www.thewholehalflife.com is available!

Oi! I'd say get that!
31 Jan 11, 12:51
By potatis_invalid
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Member
thewholehalflife.org is IMO a better idea since this is not a commercial website.
31 Jan 11, 13:29
By Stojke
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= O P L - 3 =
twhalflife.org?

I dont know much about this web site since i am ultra newb here. I do know one thing, that this is the most active mapping web site i know of!

Ive read the whole thing, and i do think that you should move. Still this opinion is based only on what ive read...
31 Jan 11, 13:46
By Striker
avatar
Member
Quote:
And you guys can't communicate with him?

This sounds like a fight or a disagreement to me and possibly the direction of the website. None of my business....


Theory of conspiration.

Ant, Strider and Penguinboy(the admins of twhl.co.za) have been arguing for a long time with Atom about taking the control of the site. As friendly as Atom is, he refused so, but still let them be admins.
This happened around 2006, and we haven't heard from Atom since, although the admins claim he still pays the webhosting and he is just very busy at work.
Some people argue if the admins are really terrorists and they keep Atom in a basement, torturing him for full access to the website.


Damn Wikileaks, this is a lie!
31 Jan 11, 14:22
By kdunivan
avatar
Member
I am kinda liking the mystery person aspect. Still gets paid....

no, just kidding...do what you need to do.

All hail ATOM! Thanks for the website.

call us....
31 Jan 11, 14:38
By Luke
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Luke
I'm on the fence. Just do something that makes it so I can keep my join date. I'm a whore like that.
31 Jan 11, 14:54
By Habboi
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Sticky White Love Glue
I say reset Ieatchow or was it cheese...'s login just to piss him off *_*
31 Jan 11, 14:59
By JeffMOD
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Call 141.12
It's entirely possible to move all the data to a different server should you get access to it from Atom, right? I think that's the best solution, if you guys can do it.
Either way, as long as the accounts themselves (logins, emails, and passwords) are preserved and there's a redirect from this domain, everything should be fine with me.
31 Jan 11, 15:57
By kdunivan
avatar
Member
Personally, I would like a fresh user account with some perks....lol

Everybody around here assumes that I like kdunivan for some reason....

Most people just call me Dunivan....

I'm Irish like that...
31 Jan 11, 16:18
By AJ
avatar
Glorious Overlord
All the data would be preserved. As for the domain names mentioned earlier, they're not exactly catchy: I'd rather we went for an entirely new name, particularly if we're going to branch into different engines.
31 Jan 11, 16:32
By Crollo
avatar
Member
Quote:
I just had conversation with Atom yesterday concerning a texture so I know he is at least logging on. And you guys can't communicate with him?


Wrong Atom.
31 Jan 11, 16:43
By saw1833
avatar
Member
The New Half-Life
TNHL
The domain could be TNHL.net or so. TNHL.com is like $5,000 USD.
31 Jan 11, 16:43
By Crollo
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Member
That actually sounds nice.

Also, if you want the K removed you can just PM a staff member.
31 Jan 11, 17:04
By Stojke
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= O P L - 3 =
Why are domains so expencive?! O_o

On hosting sites i know, the domain is like 15$ (com net)
31 Jan 11, 17:09
By Luke
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Luke
They're expensive because people are reselling them.

If you need a name, you, more importantly, need to realize what you actually want to be on this site. What games, modding, etc.
31 Jan 11, 18:26
By AJ
avatar
Glorious Overlord
That's the idea, Luke. I think it'd be nice if we kept open the possibility of branching into any engine that people can contribute content for. A while back, Andy was part of a new level design community called Rust. It specialised in a variety of engines, not just Goldsource/Source. The name of the site itself doesn't need to explicitly say what it supports.

By the way, there's absolutely no animosity between atom and the Admin team here. Atom slipped away from the site a long time ago, leaving it in the hands of the previous Admin team (Andy, Seventh-Monkey, RabidMonkey and myself). He's simply a difficult person to get in touch with.
31 Jan 11, 18:31
By Jessie
avatar
Ladytype
Quote:
Some people argue if the admins are really terrorists and they keep Atom in a basement, torturing him for full access to the website.
www .HL:HS.com

Do you actually read anything Crollo? It was established it was the wrong Atom hours ago.
31 Jan 11, 18:43
By Striker
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Member
Darkie, that makes no sense.
31 Jan 11, 18:55
By DiscoStu
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Member
I happen to have a similar story I can share.

Many moons ago I joined a certain forum, it was very popular and people in it were very friendly. The forum itself was a subdomain off some other site owned by someone I'll call Susan. Susan was admin of the forum, but wasn't interested in it - she never once logged in to her account. Instead, she relied on Katie to do all the forum admin work. Katie was a bit of a bitter person sometimes, and was generally disliked by the community.

Long story short, I wound up being promoted first to mod then admin when Katie quit. After insisting a bit I got ftp access and database login data from Susan so I could update the forum (it had been running on an ancient, horribly outdated version of phpBB), but Susan never came around to see what we were up to. Susan keeps paying for the hosting, but she never logged in and barely ever replied to email, so it was (still is) all up to me.

Anyway, the point of this was that the server went down several times and there was nothing I could do but waiting until it was reset. This cost us nearly all members, currently we're about 4 (down from a few hundred). I even thought of taking all files and data to a new server of mine, but after about two years of barely zero attendance I'm starting to believe it's pointless and they won't ever come back.

*Please note: Names have been anonymised where appropriate.

I see where you're going. If there's absolutely, positively no way you can reach the all mighty Atom and request server access, moving to a new server you have more control over is a possibility. It's perfectly possible even to migrate all the data to a new, more flexible database structure if desired. Having a bit of experience with servers, PHP and databases, I humbly offer myself as a volunteer to contribute to the development of the new site.

It would be a bit sad to see the TWHL name go, there is something even magical about it and its simplicity. If Atom won't release the domain to at least use as a redirect, I'm sure we can all come up with a new one. TNHL sounds good, but doesn't have the same ring to it.
31 Jan 11, 21:31
By 2muchvideogames
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Member
you might have to consider the fact that, any currently existing links to twhl will be dead, thus drastically reducing the influx of potential members
31 Jan 11, 21:43
By potatis_invalid
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Member
Not if you redirect requests.
31 Jan 11, 22:04
By kdunivan
avatar
Member
Quote:
By the way, there's absolutely no animosity between atom and the Admin team here. Atom slipped away from the site a long time ago, leaving it in the hands of the previous Admin team (Andy, Seventh-Monkey, RabidMonkey and myself). He's simply a difficult person to get in touch with.


Yeah, I don't think I have ever seen him online and I have been here for a minute. My post really made no real sense after I figured the Atom thing out.

And are you saying that the new site would be an site for all games and platforms? Well, within reason....

I am not so sure I like "The New Half Life". If you are going to have Half Life in the name then make it something like HalfLife Unlimited. It was going to be my new universal Source Mod Folder but you can use it. lol. All my maps are pretty much arena's anyways so my current is HalfLife Arena, another good name. Feel free to use either one...lol

Names are makers and killers so choose wisely grasshopper.
31 Jan 11, 22:47
By Rimrook
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Guru
www.community17.org

yeh? its available, more general, etc.
31 Jan 11, 22:51
By Blitzkrieg
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Member
wemakeprettythingsoccasionally.com is free too, although i like your idea much better.
31 Jan 11, 23:40
By Crollo
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Member
atomnolongerownstwhlhaha.com is also available, but...
31 Jan 11, 23:57
By X-LAyer2
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Member
welcometocity17.com
hlmappers.com
city17mapping.com
bmrfmapping.com

Just some suggestions smile - :)
01 Feb 11, 00:15
By TawnosPrime
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I...AM...CANADIAN!
I think Rimrook has a good idea there. Community17 offers a general name for any future, branching expansions, while maintaining the roots established as a Goldsource/Source community, and as an added bonus, is an amusing play on words.
01 Feb 11, 01:09
By Penguinboy
avatar
Haha, I died again!
It's okay, but it seems kinda generic. I don't really like the idea of putting 'community' in the name. The reason TWHL is a good name is because it's reasonably subtle and unique.

Keep the ideas rolling in! Let's focus more on the name of the site itself, rather than the domain name. The site name is important - once we have a good name, we can work on figuring out the domain.
01 Feb 11, 01:27
By Soup Miner
avatar
Me, mad? Haha, quite likely.
Just keep the TWHL name, that's all I ask.

It's a safe assumption that all maps would be safely transfered over, right?
01 Feb 11, 02:06
By satchmo
avatar
Member
http://www.half-life-mapping.org/

That's available.

And renting a domain name is not too expensive. When I owned and operated www.gamingparents.org, it cost me $6.99 a month and $17.99 a year to renew the domain name. I had Surpass Hosting. It was quite reliable.
01 Feb 11, 02:08
By Soup Miner
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Me, mad? Haha, quite likely.
www.halflife-thewholethereof.org
01 Feb 11, 02:16
By 2muchvideogames
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Member
FTWHL.com
01 Feb 11, 02:31
By Soup Miner
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Me, mad? Haha, quite likely.
fmyhalflife.com laughing - :lol:
01 Feb 11, 03:27
By Rimrook
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Guru
www.levelengineers.org
01 Feb 11, 03:44
By Jessie
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Ladytype
worldcrafters.org

Oh, wait.
01 Feb 11, 03:56
By kdunivan
avatar
Member
soupminer.com is available....kinda catchy!

Maybe something with Atom in it?

http://www.mightyatom.com/ is available! lol

something that screams creativity...in a subtle way...

CommunityTWHL
TWHLCommunity
TWHLUnlimited (think I already said that)

Dunno, too many people want to somehow keep the name. Maybe not possible.
01 Feb 11, 04:15
By Jessie
avatar
Ladytype
I think the name might be better off looking a little more towards mapping and creativity than Half-Life. (Half the maps aren't Half-Life nowadays anyway, just it's engines.) Just as long as it still relates to it somehow.
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