February 2019 Breakdown – RandomAnime.org

“This month I want to focus solely on content.”

So that was a lie.

February turned out to be a very unexpected month, at least from my point of view. I struggled with a lot of decisions with the website, and ultimately came up with a new game plan moving forward.

Updates

Well, there really was only one update that made it all the way to production, and that was the Random Anime of the Day update.

A screenshot of the RAD Order table in the database

The update to the RAD made it so that it updated based off the users local time, instead of updating at a fixed, US Central time. I haven’t had any issues with this implementation, and feel like it performs a lot better. The RAD won’t randomly update for some users that are accessing the site around the world. I feel like it’s more consistent.

Website Re-Coding (Partially)

The main reason for the lack of content updates is the re-coding of the scripts of the website. I actually did add 15 anime, they just haven’t made it to production yet.

Basically, none of the styling on the website is changing. What I’m working on is updating the front-end JavaScript and back-end PHP scripts of the site. The previous update made the site a single-page, Angular app. I’m reverting this for a couple reasons.

JavaScript file size reduction from 241kb to 196kb

The website will still use Angular for some pages that need it, but it is not going to be completely reliant on it. The headaches were just getting too much to try and keep this site a single-page app, and the benefit wasn’t that great. The result of this sees the removal of page transitions, but I’ve styled the pages in such a way that it still gives off that vibe.

By taking out quite a bit of the Angular scripts, I’ve actually managed to condense the script size of the website as a whole pretty significantly. As of right now, I’m seeing about a 45kb reduction in the main script size, which is awesome.

Removing Ad/Donation System

The system itself is pretty cool, but I just don’t want to deal with it anymore. There are some issues that I hashed out, but I just feel like it’s overkill for the site. For the most part, it wasn’t getting used (until recently, go figure, when I decide to remove it).

That doesn’t mean it’s going to be an ad only site. Actually, I’m removing ads from the site…again. This decision comes from me just being fed up with Adsense. I just don’t care to deal with it anymore. So contributions are going to be the only revenue, but I don’t really care. I’ve decided I’m going to stop expecting the site to make money.

What I am doing is making the fact that the site is ad-free more apparent. I’ve designed a pop-out modal of sorts that will be present all the time. The user can collapse it, and it gets pretty small and out of the way, but it can’t be outright dismissed. My hope is that this brings more awareness.

Accessibility

I’ve been going through a lot of Lynda courses as of late, just trying to push my knowledge even further, and I’ve realized the site isn’t as accessible as it should be. In response to that, my re-coding of the website is also working on accessibility issues such as semantics and keyboard navigation.

It’s not going to change much on the site for the normal user, but I want the website to be able to be used by as many as possible.

March

As my wedding date draws closer and closer, I can’t help but expect to put less and less work into the site for the time being. A reasonable expectation would be to push this re-coding project, because it is mostly completed, but we’ll see. I need to meet a minimum payout with Adsense before I can push the update, or else I’m just leaving money to sit.

Once this re-coding is done, I will have to focus on content. It’s to the point now where I need to get this season’s anime on the site, since all the Simuldubs are well on their way. Every time I say I have the website in a good spot, I end up changing something, so we’ll see.

Conclusion

Between stressing over work and the wedding, February was a little rough. I found it a little difficult to focus on the site at times, and maybe that’s alright. People are still enjoying it, so that’s the main thing.

Side note, the site analytics were meh for February, even with the short month. There’s nothing much to report there.

Thanks for the support.

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RandomAnime.org

RandomAnime.org

RandomAnime.org