Weekly Report: 25th November 2019
First Merge Request for FrontierNav
I released merge requests around the start of last week and it already had its first use before I even properly showed it off. I wasn't expecting it and only noticed after seeing a sustained increase in events around that feature. The first request was waiting for 3 days which isn't great. I initially contacted the contributor by email, then by Twitter after I noticed a recent follower with the same name.
Just by having this one contribution, I was able to gather a lot of data and fix a few issues. People obviously don't view things like I do, so having others even just try things helps a lot.
The lack of communication channels directly on the website is a problem but not an urgent one until more people start contributing. Merge requests currently don't allow comments. Introducing them shouldn't be difficult but ideally, I want to integrate it with the existing Community Forums to reduce duplication and maintenance.
Other FrontierNav Changes
- Added incoming relationship columns to the tables.
- This required a lot of work migrating the data model to support bi-directional look ups.
- Listed entity types for each relationship column.
- Added data validation when exporting to avoid invalid data.
- Introduced documentation to help users discover more advanced features.
Marketing vs Sharing
I personally view "marketing" as a dirty word. I know it isn't, but with commercialised tracking, privacy breaches and all the lot going on in the Web, I can't help feel that way. It is the default. Whatever my feelings, I need to market FrontierNav a lot more than I currently do, otherwise no one will even know it exists.
I recently watched a GDC Talk by David Wehle where he went through how he marketed his budget indie game side project. A lot of his points reminded me of when I first shared FrontierNav. At that point, I was just sharing. I didn't view it as marketing. But David deliberately went on forums like Reddit, and posted there weekly in order to market his game. He shared other things just to avoid the Self-Promotion Rules. To me, it's a bit disingenuous, but it worked. At the end of the day, people got what they want, the forums got more activity (as he posted other things to avoid getting banned for spam), and the game was a success.
Overcoming my distate for marketing is going to take a while, but no doubt I have to do it. So I'm going to try dedicate up to an hour or so every week to get FrontierNav out there. For example, I'll be sharing gaming-related news via FrontierNav's Twitter account. I already started since today marks 2 years since Xenoblade 2's release.
I said "sharing" again without realising. I guess "sharing" is the tactical term, where as "marketing" is the strategic term.
I finally bought a new mechnical keyboard, I wrote a separate post on it.
Thanks for reading.