MSP stands for ‘Multi Social Programming’. Our objective is to make apps work on as many different platforms (e.g. Facebook, Yahoo, etc.) as possible and on as many devices (laptops, tablets, etc.) as possible. That’s no small task; but we are convinced this is the best way to provide social games.
Experience shows that trusting platforms to provide service to apps without disruption, or at all, is risky. In our view the community which plays a social game is an important thing in its own right. The only way to provide such communities with a guarantee of continuity both of their game AND of their access to it, is to provide access through our own ‘portal’ or ‘stand-alone’ game sites, and through as many ‘platforms’ as we can attach our games to as well.
This will be no small feat; but everything we have written since work began on Pets ‘n’ Friends has been created in a manner consistent with that goal. That’s one of the major reasons it has taken so long to get this far; we are writing software which will last, rather than making a fast buck and then blaming platform changes for our own short-sightedness.
A key aspect of providing multi social gaming is to have a login method for our own sites. We do not wish to be dependent on Facebook login or any other third party method, because anything provided for us can be modified or withdrawn with or without proper warning.
So creating this forum is the first step in becoming multi social. To use this forum, you have to register, a familiar requirement for forum users. We intend to turn your forum registration into a single login method for this forum, for the stand-alone version of Pets ‘n’ Friends, and for all our future apps. This will take time, but today we are taking the vital first step.
Some of you will be aware that we created another forum three years ago. However, slow progress on the game (and the fun had by all in our Facebook group), caused that forum to be very little used.
When the fluff forum died, I thought hard to learn lessons from its extinction. The major one was that this was caused by a maintenance requirement which no one cared to perform; it died of abandonment. So to ensure you all of an ongoing service, I saw the need to take control of whatever forum software we used. Since this was impossible for the old forum, it had to go.
Then I realised the potential advantages of combining forum registration with registration for our stand alone site. From that point on we stopped mentioning the ‘old’ forum and began preparing this new one for you. Now that PnF has reached a point where trading means something, we are opening this new forum for you all and will be closing the old one.
The forum design reflects our intentions. We have styled this as the ‘MSP forum’. Here you will be able to talk about Pets ‘n’ Friends, read about its creators (us – MSP) and also read about other apps when we eventually get round to creating them. MSP was born out of PnF, and PnF remains our first commitment, but having created PnF in a uniquely flexible way, we are ideally placed to write many apps for many platforms, and that is our longer term aim.
Right now the programming for the whole of MSP is done mostly by me, with the vital advice and limited programming help of ‘Alias Al’, our self-effacing head programmer. The key to creating not only a thriving, fascinating game but also to achieving the wider aspirations of MSP is to turn this long term volunteer project into a business which can pay specialists the wages they can earn anywhere else. We’re not obsessed with making money, but it is a means to an end. There will be no flashy offices, no excess and no ego building, but being a business is the only way to pay for the work to be done. So we are glad to aspire to delivering the idea of MSP and to become, as soon as possible, a business called MSP; because without the ideal of Multi Social Programming, social gaming, which is dear to our hearts and yours, asks users to trust platforms not to fail them again.
You have probably learned what that means the hard way, as have we all here at MSP. We don’t want your pet to live in limbo, your money to be lost or your friends to become strangers. Rather than mope over what has been lost, we have a clear plan for a reliable future. That’s why we’re intent on both being and delivering ‘MSP’ to you all.
~DJK, 21st May 2015.