In the last 10 days we've had another 10 new apps go live, with another new app release coming in the next couple hours. We've also added a new New Apps Tracker so you can pop onto the site and get a quick list of the new apps. It's linked from the homepage just below the news announcements, too.
- CamStudio Portable - screen recorder and video producer
- Cook Timer Portable - simple countdown timer
- Cube Portable - old-school first person shooter
- CubicExplorer Portable - advanced file manager
- Evince Portable - document viewer (pdf, ps, djvu, tiff, dvi)
- Get Sudoku Portable - interactive sudoku solver
- Sauerbraten (Cube 2) Portable - first person shooter
- VirtuaWin Portable - virtual desktop manager
- Workrave Portable - repetitive stress injury prevention
- X-Moto Portable - 2D motocross platform game
Development Section Tools and Organization
We've done a little reorganizing in the Development section to make it a bit easier for folks to find what they need. Information is now split between information for developers packaging apps (PA.c Format, Installer, Launcher, AppCompactor, etc) and internal development information (Test Releases, apps ready for release, etc). We've added in a link to outdated app progress for official apps awaiting an update (including several entries that were just added today that will be gone by tomorrow). We've also added an open bug tracker so our devs and users can easily track open bugs and issues in releases. We'll be upgrading to a full-blown issue tracker once the Drupal 7 upgrade is complete (see below).
Additional Hosting Tweaks
Drupal Upgrade Progress
We're making some progress on our manual Drupal update scripts. As a refresher, Drupal is the content management system on which PortableApps.com runs. We're looking to upgrade to the new version for some added features (improved localization being a big one and the updated app directory being another) but have run into issues with the automated upgrade process (it breaks horribly without any meaningful errors). So we're approaching it manually. We're hopeful that we'll be able to do the upgrade later this month.
We're looking into doing a donation push in the run-up to 2.0 and beyond to help cover the additional costs of hosting as the site and platform continue to gain popularity. As bandwidth costs continue to grow and the need for additional hardware presents itself, the additional funds are definitely going to help. In terms of monthly unique visitors, we're closing in on the likes of BoingBoing, SlashDot and similar sites and the hosting costs are reflecting that. Currently, we're covering the additional overhead from personal funding sources.
Rather than adding in a lot of advertising to the site or adding on expensive "premium" features we think a call for donations is the best way to get from where we are now to our self-sufficient open source business model which will be fully implemented in the coming months. The goal, as always, is to keep it all open source, free and easy while still keeping the site clean and fast.
We plan to kick this off soon after the 1.9 release is posted and will be providing more details at the time. We may do something similar to wikipedia's call for donations, though likely without my face looking sad on every page of the site. :) We're always looking for ideas and suggestions as well, so feel free to drop us a note to our developer contact address or post a note in the forums.
1.9 / 2.0 Beta 6 Platform Progress
We've made some more progress on the next dual-mode platform release (it will be a 1.9 Stable release with the 2.0 Beta 6 features that can be enabled by checking an option). Categories are working nicely with just a couple bugs remaining. The graphical themes have all been tweaked based on user input (especially the issues with them seeming a bit flat and washed-out due to off-white text). The ability to add apps via the updater interface is also coming along well. I finished fixes to ensure that icons are available for all the apps whether or not they are installed as well without needing to have the updater itself convert all the PNGs to ICOs.
Once the updater and categories are complete and relatively stable, we'll be pushing the release out for both stable and beta users. So, expect an update on that soon.
That's it for this update. Next week's update will be happening earlier in the week, so keep an eye on this blog Tuesday or Wednesday for more news. Have a great weekend everybody!