Monday, 6 June 2016

Meson Chess Problem database - new facilities

When I gave my website a makeover I added a couple of new facilities to my Meson Chess Problem Database.

There is now a facility to search by Problem Identifier (PID), useful if someone sends you one. Of course, you can still send or receive a link to the actual page with the problem on it.

More notable is the addition, on the general search page, of a facility to retrieve problems within three ranges of number of pieces used. The three ranges are Miniature (less than 8 pieces), Meredith (less than 13 pieces) and Heavy, all the rest. Meredith is a term named after a famous American chess composer of that name.

Since putting the new website live I have been using my new Kalulu chess problem testing program to generate and add solutions to some of the mates in 4 and 5 in the database. These solutions are in a slightly different format to the mates in 2 and 3, which are generated via a Java program when they are added. Each time I do update work on the database, I generate more solutions, but I don't know how long it will take for them all to be added. There are plans to add solutions to problems other than directmates, but as I haven't yet built that facility into Kululu, I can't say when that will be. In due course I will replace the solutions generated by the Java program with solutions generated by Kalulu.

Saturday, 4 June 2016

New website after a week

My new website has now been live for just over a week and in that time I have been investigating its usage, both during that week and in the month before that. A couple of interesting facts have come to light.

During May, when the Joomla site was there, the administrator login page was accessed over 3000 times. All but a handful of those accesses were not by me as I was too busy developing the new site to regularly update the old one. As nothing was changed, I assume that all the login attempts not by me failed. This huge number of unfriendly accesses was not new, but was about average for any month. This was one of the reasons why I decided to abandon Joomla.

Now that the Joomla site is not there, the administrator login page is not there, but there have nonetheless been 48 attempts to access it in the last week. There also appear to have been 8 attempts to access a non-existent WordPress login page. I have never used WordPress on this site.

Putting the new site live has caught the search-engine crawlers on the hop. At least three of them have all week been attempting to access pages that are no longer there. These attempts make up the vast majority of the traffic. I suppose that this is to be expected given the large amount of data in the Meson Chess Problem Database. I haven't made any checks, but I would imagine finding the new site via a search engine is not yet possible.

Before the change, Meson was the most popular part of the site, and still is. This week 743 chess problems have been retrieved and viewed, which is just about the same as when the old site was there. Hopefully Meson now looks better and is easier to use.