As some of you may know, we met our funding goal by the most modest of standards, with no excess for taking the big step required to tackle another phase. A contracted team, and difficulties with adding new stuff to old code, took away from us wanting to work on the more exciting aspects of the project. But still, we kept at it, writing the foundations for all the big steps that need to be taken to finish the Mote project, all the while believing that we'll get to this day.
Mote is now in the public's hands, and we've put it in maintenance mode to focus on what needs to be done. We need to ensure that the project is built on a stable foundation of support, and this cannot be accomplished by relying on another round crowdfunding. The masses have spoken on the first run, and it was mostly quiet. As many advisers told us a year ago, free and open-sourced models simply do not attract people to invest, even if the very nature of the project epitomizes the spirit from which ventures like Kickstarter, Indiegogo and other crowdfunding platforms sprung from.
Someone once said that we can't expect a different result by doing the exact same thing. When we ran the 1st Kickstarter, our goals were to expand the team, acquire all the necessary resources, and foster the community's growth. These goals have not changed. and while we ideally wanted everything to run under a non-profit margin, our goals can only be realistically achieved by maintaining a comfort zone that will allow us to hire more people, acquire more equipment and services, and acquire the ability to keep the whole operation secure under any contingency.
The development roadmap has been re-arranged:
- Phase 2 will now be for implementing Idle Ideas' primary web services. This was formerly Phase 4 under the previous development plan. Web services include the game session servers, a content marketplace and its underlying payment services, permanent forums, and more. Both Mote, and Mote-X will be able to interface with these services, albeit, interfacing with different components within.
- Phase 3 will run in almost in parallel to Phase 2, and over a longer trajectory, with the new features being added throughout the period. Phase 5 goals are appended to this revamped phase, and all new features will go to the Mote-X application. So the updated features list for Mote-X are as follows (not exhaustive):
- Java 8 - There was no need for Mote to be Java 8 compatible, since it uses nothing from Java 8's new feature set. But, Mote-X will leverage Java 8 in delivering it's new user interface, and other replacements to old MapTool components.
- HTML5 Frames and Dialogs - These will allow the writing and use of rich, web content for use within the application. From macro output, to self-made, or customized, game sheets that can run macro code, these will supplant the old HTML 3.2 components used by MapTool.
- New, Simpler UI - The focus will be minimalistic and on being productive. It will maximize the map view, while keeping everything as accessible as possible, over multiple physical screens.
- New map engine
- Mobile support for Android and iOS.
We are excited about the future, now that we can start working on groundbreaking stuff. We hope you are too, and will lend us your support in getting there. Please help spread the word!