Pre-Alpha Update - Devlog #1
Posted by ty on Jul 10, 2021
Hey there Comradery supporters -
A new update is live! I'm publishing this first devlog to kick off some new communication features that we just made live on Comradery. If you're receiving this in your email inbox, that's one of the new features! Project supporters now get post announcements and newsletters directly to their email. I am going to structure development logs with a brief description at the top with some bullet points for major feature releases, then in the next section I'll share some things we're working on for upcoming updates.
New In This Update
- Comradery has email support! Creators can deliver rich text newsletters to supporters' inboxes with images: In the future, we will support dynamic links to videos or podcasts posted to your project page. The styling is rough at the moment; I'm going to be doing a design pass in the near future.
- Related to emails, every post now has a permalink, which means you can share individual posts on social media and elsewhere. Individual posts' pages also still need a styling pass.
- Updated the global site font to a variation that is more accessible. Uppercase "I"s and lowercase "l"s no longer look the same, Os look distinctly different than 0s, and various other changes are included.
- Bugfixes - Big thanks to everyone who submitted a bug report, we were able to tackle many small issues that were reported and many that we caught on our end. Not all of the bug reports have been addressed yet, but we've reviewed all of them and put them on our upcoming development schedule in the most efficient place we can. We were also able to identify a number of idiosyncratic issues with Stripe's payments API, and we confirmed that we have addressed and fixed issues with recurring payments processing correctly. Thank you to everyone who is supporting the development team with monthly donations.
What We're Working On
- We hear you: folks want to start using Comradery NOW. The dev team is making a careful outline of what is the absolute minimum feature set we are comfortable with in testing the platform with the first group of Creators. We've spoken to several people who want to roll with the punches and start using the platform in pre-alpha while the paint is still wet and many of the walls aren't put up yet, so the dev team is prioritizing features that MUST be done in order for a very early group to start using Comradery. We need to guarantee:
- a secure system where payments work correctly
- posts are delivered to supporters in an intuitive and attractive interface
- and that supporters get all the correct correspondence and invoices to trust the platform and payment processing. We're almost there!
- Cade in the Treasury Committee is working hard in negotiating a contract for us to automatically calculate and file sales tax for a way that's affordable for creators, so we may reach out first to folks who indicated they want to operate with donations only. However, it really depends on how those negotiations go and how long it takes to integrate that service into our checkout code. ANY exclusive tiers with posts/podcasts/images/content must be checked to see if your supporters are required to pay sales tax, and so this is a very important service that we want to get working as soon as possible.
- Several areas of the site are in a 'functional but not pretty' state and need a design pass, (as a designer I am very sensitive about this 😖 ) including
- email newsletters
- post pages
- the project page view after you are already a subscriber
- some other odds and ends
- The Creator backend system that allows you to administrate your projects and posts is going to be phased in over the next few updates, but we hope to release the designs for feedback very soon. This has been de-prioritized in the immediate term, because Creators have communicated that they want to use the system as soon as possible even with an incomplete creator dashboard.
- John and Alana have been working hard in developing the Co-op Bylaws (an ongoing project), and, more immediately, a creator onboarding process. We need something easier than every creator reading and memorizing the entire bylaws document, so we are setting up a multi stage check-in process that starts with onboarding interviews (many of you have completed those, more are restarting soon), followed by some neat tools on the platform for creators to get up to speed on community rules and how to be successful on Comradery.
- In the future we're going to have a place set up on the website for updates that are out of scope of the dev team, but I'm just using this post to let you know what's going on as it pertains to site updates at the moment.
- These future updates are subject to change depending on various factors, but hopefully this communicates our priorities.
Once again, thanks for your support! The development team has passed $200 in monthly donations to give us more hours every week to work on Comradery. Our next goal is $500 per month. Please consider pitching in a monthly donation to help us get future updates out the door faster (Link here: https://comradery.co/development ). These development logs are always available to everyone, but supporters who donate will get them in their email inbox as soon as they are posted.
Thanks again for everyone's excellent bug reports and feedback! If you encounter problems or want to let us know about a problem, please use the blue "Report an Issue" button found everywhere on the website. If you want to chat about anything else, drop us a line at [email protected]
I'll report back with the next update soon,