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A general overview of MacScene
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TOPIC: A general overview of MacScene

A general overview of MacScene 8 years ago #1222

I am a new member on MacScene. That being said, I can already tell that this community has a lot to offer. Nevertheless, I wasn't around before the server crashed originally, so I feel kind of odd posting stuff in the forum without actually understanding all that's going on. I've read the threads talking about what happened, MacScene's future, etc. I just want to know why the site seemed a lot more lively before. Is it merely the fact that the new site is still in transition?

Just wondering. Also, feel free to tell what you're working on, some of the progress of the site (I love web design), or anything relevant.

Why do I get the feeling that nobody will reply to the little n00b in the corner?

Re:A general overview of MacScene 8 years ago #1223

Welcome to MacScene, Kuribo, I hope you enjoy it here.

I'll lay down some of the history and current happenings for you. Hopefully others will fill in the rest.

This is not the first time we've had to start again, but it is the first time we have been in full control of hosting and back-end stuff. Niemann (MacScene's owner) is working on the design and features of the site in his free time. I'm sure he'd love to hear any suggestions you may have.

Once upon a time, when MacScene was called Emuscene, it was the go-to place for emulation on the Macintosh. We had news, a wiki, an emulator database, a forum, and a few other bits and pieces.

MacScene was born out of discussions between a few of the senior members (particularly IUG and Niemann), and the near-loss of the emuscene domain. The details are sketchy in my memory, so I'll leave it to someone else to explain what went down, but the result was a broadened scope.

We started to cover more news that was not strictly emulation, and community discussions gravitated towards general gaming and tech stuff.

The site was losing its way, though, as many long-time members were busy with their lives, and a lack of direction failed to bring many new members, while a vocal few were unhappy at the changes. Erise and iBatman (amongst others) kept it looking alive, but MacScene was dying a very slow and painful death.

Then we lost just about everything, which is when Niemann returned and rebuilt the site on his company's tech. You've read about what happened after that already.

MacScene is most certainly still in transition. We have yet to figure out precisely what balance there should be between emulation, retro gaming, current gaming, Mac, and iPhone/iPad content and features. And there are other site features still in the pipeline. Any suggestions you have would be appreciated.

The situation right now essentially boils down to this: I'm working on maintaining a steady stream of interesting content, whilst testing the boundaries to see how broad the scope should be, and Niemann is working on the design, back-end, and features. Others are helping out here and there with various things.

Hit me up if you're interested in writing something -- the 3 main things I'm doing at the moment are general news round-ups, Mac/iPhone features, and retro gaming articles; go to Niemann if you want to help with the other stuff. And post any questions or suggestions on the forum.
Last Edit: 8 years ago by mossy_11.

Re:A general overview of MacScene 8 years ago #1224

Mossy did an excellent job of answering the question; but I did want to chime in just to show that were are many of us in the community who keep up with the forums and news, but contribute in various ways to the site.

We are in a state of transition, which seems to be a characteristic throughout the history of Emuscene / MacScene. As Mossy mentioned, this most recent 'reboot' of the site represents the first time we are in full control of every aspect of the site.

When I first started Mac.Emuscene.com (1999, was when I began) Octavius and I were under the control of the Emuscene staff. Our first battle was acquiring the rights to continue the site under the title Emuscene, turning it to a Mac focus; this resulted in our first reboot. The next four or five years were filled with reboots because of unreliable hosting, bad programming, and general lack of knowledge. The next challenge came from competition from sites like emulation.net and MacEmu. Eventually MacEmu and Emuscene merged / acquired each other (I think IUG and I tell the story differently ). Our most recent battles have been internal with trust being misplaced and files being lost.

Today however, Elemodo Software (which spawned from the Emuscene / MacScene community in 2008; all the staff members and people who have done work for the company have come in some way from this community) will always keep MacScene secure. There will be no 'reboots' as long as Elemodo is around. A number of us are working on projects which (while giving us some extra money on the side) also contribute in many ways to this site.

For instance, this version of MacScene is based on v1.2 of our Genesis software which is a feature-rich social networking application built on Joomla. Elemodo is using a lot of the technology (and the knowledge we developed in running Emuscene / MacScene for eleven years) to create a viable company. We've been very successful thus far, and I hope to continue our success into the future. We have about a dozen clients, and our profits are what makes MacScene continue to run ad-free.

We are also currently working on a sister-project to MacScene, and you might be able to uncover in these forums some clues as to the direction of what I've been calling 'ViGi'.

And to speak to your comment that 'the site seemed a lot more lively before', I disagree a bit. Looking at our analytics data shows that the site is more popular than even. A new member signs up about once a day (once every 0.96 days to be more exact). We have more traffic than ever before, and the traffic is more diverse (our traffic used to be nearly 90% North America / England...now its more like 60%; the rest being predominantly in Canada, France, Australia, Japan, Spain, Brazil, and Mexico). Our forums are the most active part of the site, although our posts per hit ratio is down (I can only assume because we are receiving more hits). Since the day of our relaunch, our hits are down 5%. However in the period between our previous relaunch and now, our hits are up nearly 20%.

MacScene has always been about the community, and not about any individual member. So if you have any recommendations (especially on the development side, I'm not much of an editor, reporter, or writer myself), please let me know. I love trying out new ideas, especially if they're creative.

And we were all n00bs at one point or another and stop sitting in the corner...you're creeping me out.
Last Edit: 8 years ago by Niemann.

Re:A general overview of MacScene 8 years ago #1227

Thank you very much for the incredibly detailed responses. About my comment on the activity of the site: I should have edited my original response, as it was inaccurate. I was talking about the amount of posts on the main site, as I can visibly see that MacScene has new users abound. Now, I can't complain about the posts, seeing the immense amount of time, effort, and money that is contributed to this site.

I'd love to help you with anything that needs helping, whether it's writing articles or simple maintenance or both. I have been published as a writer (poetry, to be exact ) but am actually writing a full, dedicated book. Also, I have a job as a photographer, and am moving towards including my digital graphics/web design (I do some basic coding on the side, i.e. Javascript, Perl and HTML and CSS, if you count them) in my site.

So, that being said, I'd love to help you! I have plenty of time on my hands waiting for a new photo gig.

By the way, the little comment about being a n00b in a corner was sarcasm, considering how much I've already posted on the site. There should really be a bbCode tag for that or something.

Re:A general overview of MacScene 8 years ago #1233

I think the site would be better if it focused more on emulation, like it used to. But perhaps that's just me (it's the reason I still swing by here). I realize the name of the site is now MacScene, not MacEmuScene so maybe it's just wishful thinking.

Also, a fix to the login would be nice. I always seem to get logged out of here all the time and have a hell of a time trying to log back.

Re:A general overview of MacScene 8 years ago #1234

vitaflo wrote:
I think the site would be better if it focused more on emulation, like it used to. But perhaps that's just me (it's the reason I still swing by here). I realize the name of the site is now MacScene, not MacEmuScene so maybe it's just wishful thinking.

Also, a fix to the login would be nice. I always seem to get logged out of here all the time and have a hell of a time trying to log back.

To add to this, you can't login on a PS3 or something similar, because it requires you to hit "Return" on a keyboard to login, and you don't have that on the PS3.

Re:A general overview of MacScene 8 years ago #1235

IUG wrote:
To add to this, you can't login on a PS3 or something similar, because it requires you to hit "Return" on a keyboard to login, and you don't have that on the PS3.


Fixed. I also fixed some of the cache problem I've been seeing, which seems to have sped the site up a bit (especially the frontpage). Vitaflo, let me know if your problem still exists, not sure what the cause could be. Perhaps try deleting any Macscene related cookies. I've noticed while doing development and old cookie will cause login problems.
Last Edit: 8 years ago by Niemann.

Re:A general overview of MacScene 8 years ago #1236

Thank you, much obliged. There's a noticeable speed improvement, and I was wondering why I had to login 3-5 times with the same password. I don't really have much to add.

Re:A general overview of MacScene 8 years ago #1237

Niemann wrote:
IUG wrote:
To add to this, you can't login on a PS3 or something similar, because it requires you to hit "Return" on a keyboard to login, and you don't have that on the PS3.


Fixed. I also fixed some of the cache problem I've been seeing, which seems to have sped the site up a bit (especially the frontpage). Vitaflo, let me know if your problem still exists, not sure what the cause could be. Perhaps try deleting any Macscene related cookies. I've noticed while doing development and old cookie will cause login problems.


Will do. A further suggestion is to have a place to log in when on the forums itself. Even if I don't get logged out randomly anymore, if I am on a different computer, reading a thread, and want to reply, it would be nice to be able to do it from the forum itself instead of having to go to the homepage to log in and then find the thread again. Unless I'm missing something...

Re:A general overview of MacScene 8 years ago #1238

Thank you for the very detailed responses. I didn't even know that much about it, as I joined last year and became very involved. I filled in as much as I could while reading about the forum, but didn't really ask a lot about it.

Re:A general overview of MacScene 8 years ago #1240

vitaflo wrote:
I think the site would be better if it focused more on emulation, like it used to. But perhaps that's just me (it's the reason I still swing by here). I realize the name of the site is now MacScene, not MacEmuScene so maybe it's just wishful thinking.


I think the biggest issue there is that the community was shrinking while it focused entirely on emulation -- long time members were leaving at a faster rate than new people were joining.

On the content side:
I make a point to track down all the emulation news for my monthly round-ups, but have no interest in doing separate articles for each emulator update (others are welcome to volunteer, however).

There is a major emulation-related feature that I'd like to do, but I haven't found the time yet to kick it off.

Other than that, there doesn't seem to be much to write about. The Mac emulation scene is not what it used to be, and there aren't many stories of interest other than those that focus on the games - which is what we're starting to do.

Niemann and I have both asked for suggestions and feedback in the past, and the only emulation-focused thing asked for was the emulator database, which is being worked on in some capacity. Most people responding seem to want more varied content.

How do others feel about the current direction of the site?

My feeling is that it's a positive thing and a necessary evolution, but what about the rest of you?

Re:A general overview of MacScene 8 years ago #1242

I started to visit MacScene (or Emuscene, I can't remember when it was) as my go-to source for Mac emulation info with a combination of the Emulator lists and wiki etc. alongside forum threads although I never used to post back then.

I like the current incarnation of the site for the new articles etc. so ideally I'd love to see my old likes of the site combined with the new: emulation information, lists and links plus varied articles on Mac topics and retro games.

Re:A general overview of MacScene 8 years ago #1244


mossy_11 wrote:
I think the biggest issue there is that the community was shrinking while it focused entirely on emulation -- long time members were leaving at a faster rate than new people were joining.


I get this of course. Everyone has different metrics for success on websites. And of course if an emu-only site would be successful then someone would build one. It's the internet, everyone is free to do their own things with their websites, and I fully support that.
Last Edit: 8 years ago by vitaflo.

Re:A general overview of MacScene 8 years ago #1246

Hmmm I started with mac.emuscene.com I believe... long while back. Of note, before this I frequented emulation.net. In my opinion this site sorta took over because it has always had more of a sense of community, and hasn't just been one guy posting all the content.

I think we all change... I think that most of the original members (correct me if I'm wrong) were teenagers and have now grown up. I know this is the case with me (except for the growing up part) but I'm married with a kid, and don't really have much time for emulation/games. Right now the only emulator I'm using is Mini vMac.

So... personally I'm not even a "casual gamer" in my opinion (although I make/sell arcade machines in order to pay the rent so I call myself more a nostalgia geek.) That said, I still come back to this site, so obviously the new approach has worked for me. If it's also drawing a different crowd, then great to hear! Long live MacScene...

Re:A general overview of MacScene 8 years ago #1247

jetboy wrote:
Hmmm I started with mac.emuscene.com I believe... long while back. Of note, before this I frequented emulation.net. In my opinion this site sorta took over because it has always had more of a sense of community, and hasn't just been one guy posting all the content.

Emulation.net->mac.emuscene.com was my introduction to this site too.


I think we all change... I think that most of the original members (correct me if I'm wrong) were teenagers and have now grown up. I know this is the case with me (except for the growing up part) but I'm married with a kid, and don't really have much time for emulation/games. Right now the only emulator I'm using is Mini vMac.


I am playing SoM again, but other than that, emulation has fallen off my grid. I attempted the iPhone jailbreak emulation on my 3G once upon a time and found it lacking. Never bothered to try again on my 3GS as jailbreaking totally messed up my 3G. Other than that, I am one of those people who buys the rereleased versions of games more than emulation. God of War 1 and 2 Collection, who knows how many Final Fantasy and Mario games I've rebought.

I also was a teenager when I was introduced to NES and SNES emulation which eventually led me here (Super Wildcard anyone?.. how about silhouette (did we ever find out who actually created that?)) This is the only web community I actively participate and have done so for, well, I guess about a decade. We've had a couple of rough patches, but the core seems to stay together. And the core here is knowledgable, helpful, and polite.

I am part of the team looking to bring this site forward and there are some very interesting things that we are looking to accomplish. I only see good things for everyone coming, those who like emulation and those who like modern gaming will both be pleasantly surprised.

Re:A general overview of MacScene 8 years ago #1249

menace690 wrote:

I also was a teenager when I was introduced to NES and SNES emulation which eventually led me here (Super Wildcard anyone?.. how about silhouette (did we ever find out who actually created that?)) This is the only web community I actively participate and have done so for, well, I guess about a decade. We've had a couple of rough patches, but the core seems to stay together. And the core here is knowledgable, helpful, and polite.



2 very good points.
Firstly... was silhouette REALLY made by Nintendo (or a Nintendo guy who knew everything?) It and VGS are probably the 2 most functional 1.0 emulators I've ever used. I sorta wish both could be disassembled and made functional in OS X for nostalgic purposes.

I think you're right on the money with regard to the members here... ALWAYS knowledgeable, helpful and polite. One of the main reasons I don't frequent other online communities is that there's a lot of places that are full of trolls/cliques. Online I generally want an incomprehensible rant, a semi-intelligent discussion or some semi-intelligent advice. I don't really want to become part of an internet clique, nor do I want to fight with people who I don't even know (some get pretty dirty... had a few sorta stalk me out and attack my personal stuff too, which was sorta scary.)

Yeah MacScene is a nice safe community no trolls/stalkers/general idiots here... I think that's one of the big reasons people keep coming back. That and there's some good knowledge around too (lots of developers... even some big name developers have frequented, which is kinda cool.)

Re:A general overview of MacScene 8 years ago #1250

jetboy wrote:

Yeah MacScene is a nice safe community no trolls/stalkers/general idiots here)

That is one of the main reasons I love this forum! 0% idiot content means people can ask questions and get sensible, helpful answers or start discussions and get genuine, thought-out replies rather than a splurge of direct brain-to-forum garbage that just makes for unpleasant reading.

Re:A general overview of MacScene 8 years ago #1251

To add to that, as I've just discovered, forums threads are generally readable throughout multiple posts with a distinct lack of tangents or arguing. Keeping this up would prevent people re-posting the same questions as answers aren't hidden amongst endless bickering and bigotry. I know I've had to answer questions that forums must get all of the time plainly because straight answers are so engulfed in trollish forum behaviour!

Re:A general overview of MacScene 8 years ago #1252

dickmedd, I've always been extremely surprised by the quality of our forums. One of the biggest considerations when we've rebooted the site has always been the balance between keeping the extraordinary quality of our membership and adding new (and potentially less extraordinary) members. The latest reboot was only in reaction to the decline in our quality membership.

Also, over the past couple of days (four days or so) we've had a 25% - 30% increase in traffic on MacScene. This includes a 28% increase in unique visitors and a 45% increase in pageviews. It seems to be in every country, every demographic, and from every source. I have to attribute this to our frontpage articles, and the resurgence of some excellent forum discussions. I'll post more in the more relevant topic, but I've always felt that from great conversations in the forums, we should be able to produce some excellent articles from the frontpage. Keeping the forums and frontpage fresh, and adding enough 'cool' features (contra code, video game fact of the day, fully-featured social network, achievements, etc.) is the plan for this incarnation of the site. I hope it works.

Re:A general overview of MacScene 8 years ago #1254

I also came to this site, via emulation.net, while I was still a teenager. It took me a little longer to sign up than menace and jetboy, though, because I was kind of intimidated by how knowledgeable everyone seemed to be - I lurked for around a year.

That's great to hear that the traffic is increasing. I've got a new series of Mac-related (and vaguely emulation-related) articles in the works that should help to keep that going.

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