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The Chess Variant Pages

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Fergus Duniho wrote on 2021-10-05 UTC

Since I can now work on code on the development server, I took the time to remove the remaining code for creating offline pages. While David used to make offline versions of the website, I have never done that. For one thing, I wasn't familiar with how he went about it. But I also didn't see the use for it. Things have changed since David wrote the code for this. Back when we got on the internet with 2400 baud modems that used the phone line, it would have been convenient to have an offline version of the site. But now that broadband and WIFI-enabled mobile devices are both common, it is easy enough to connect directly to the website. When the site is down, as it was recently, archived copies of pages can be found at So, an offline copy is not needed for archival purposes. Additionally, the website has grown more interactive than it used to be. While it was originally a set of static HTML pages, it now includes comments, database-generated pages that may be revised on the website, and ongoing games. Finally, when I program code, I write it simply for a website, and I do not want to have to take care to build in support for generating offline pages.

Besides code that was run with the condition $foroffline or $offlineindex, I replaced every instance of echoandwrite with echo, and I removed the function definitions for echoandwrite and echoorwrite. The latter wasn't even being used anyway.

Removing some of the $foroffline code created a bug, and this happened to draw my attention to the icons that appear to the left of links. I had thought of these as slightly informative decoration, but they included links to information pages and included a bunch of ALT text telling some things about the item linked. I got rid of the links to the information pages, changed the ALT text to TITLE text, and reduced the provided information to just telling what the icon meant. With this done, I was able to remove the remaining $foroffline code in make_author_line, and I also removed the $foralttext option from it. There was really no need to include author information in the ALT text for the icon when it was already on the screen anyway. Removing the little-used links to info pages and reducing the information provided by what is now a tooltip should reduce page size and make index pages quicker to load. With that in mind, I may look into extending how many links may appear on an index page.