A few years back this site was hit by a vandalism hack which injected spam links into every published post up until that point. While I managed to clean out the malicious scripts, my inelegant brute force solution did not undo the damage to the site’s archives. That left a decade’s worth of posts — covering a span when I still published daily — to be dealt with.
I did try to make a fair go at it, scrubbing twenty or so entries a day for a few months, but it was mind-numbing work made even more thankless by the growing realization that 90% of what I was fixing didn’t deserve to be saved. Posting every day (or even every other day) is going to result in a lot of shitposts which existed solely so I could feel like I met some internal quota. Stretch that out over three thousand posts across ten years, and what you’re looking at is a small handful of gems engulfed in a continent-spanning morass of dead links, forgotten in-jokes, and outdated topical commentary.
Maybe some grad student of the future might find value by drilling down into that shit for a thesis project, but otherwise it’s just a lot of pointless clutter. The world has changed since a lot of that crap went up. I have changed in a number of subtle and no so subtle ways.
AT 1.0 lasted two and a half years before I jumped to AT 2.0. AT 2.0 has been chugging along for over a decade now. There was no reason why I shouldn’t make another fresh start of things, apart from laziness and an obligation to somehow preserve the parts of the site which were worth saving.
So that’s what I’m doing. It won’t be AT 3.0 as much as AT 2.5. The template is staying because I like it, despite it being a relic of pre-mobile browsing. The archives have been, well, archived while I clean and proof them for republishing. The Ultimate Powers Jam stuff is a lock for restoration, as is the K-Tel series and Role Playing With the Changes. Nobody’s Favorites and the console-specific videogame features might follow, though I can’t shake the feeling I could do a better job rebooting those from scratch.
And then there will be the new content, which I’ve been putting off because I knew this soft relaunch was coming. A big reason I didn’t want to get too fancy with it was because I wanted shit up and running in time for the Halloween Countdown.
For the first time in a long time, I actually feel excited about this place again.