well this is a nice welcome back from my holidays!
Let me first say there is nothing mentioned here so far that has not been discussed already and mostly it comes down to time and manpower to do things.
I will let Dave talk about the technical side of the forums because it looks like changing the forums since they are pretty big at this stage is far from straight forward. It is not a problem however to edit or reorganise threads or create stickies. Rather than remove the IGDA one entirely it might be one to archive in some way, in case it is ever resurrected by the industry.
Re features: great to see people offering to write them. We have one ready to go towards the end of this week which interviews PopCap, Jolt and a new company Wee Man Studios. However we need more people to volunteer to write them. They are generally about 1,000 words so feel free to suggest topics or write them and send them in. Interviews with companies do happen here but not all companies are willing to give day in the life interviews or details of current projects.
Re profiles and companies: agree they need updating but they needed some technical fixes and we met just after Christmas to plan these and now it is up to me or someone that I can get to update them.
Re regionalised shindigs: to be honest it is up to you to organise these…I don’t mind travelling to some part of the country or working with someone to co-publicise shindigs. Getting dublin based company people to travel is another thing – we have moved the shindigs around in Dublin to try and get the most convenient place for people. We have been in discussion with some partners about doing a cross-border event.
re colleges: all the major college courses are on here and colleges like DIT, TCD and Tipp have lecturers who are regularly on here. We have also worked with/sponsored/publicised Ballyfermot on their animation event last January, DIT on the Peter Molyneux talk and Tipp on the Fleadh. The Games Jam was in association with TCD. Lecturers have written features. I am not sure what else you think we can do here? I agree with John Monkey – we are not going to get into course evaluations here as TIGA or Skillset do in the UK although some of our links there could probably be updated as things change year to year.
So to be honest I am happy to hear people talk here about things to do but what we need are a: technical volunteers and b: writers (features/FAQs/forums).
We now have many years working collaboratively with colleges and companies on a small scale. I don’t see this site becoming a gamesindustry.biz, or a gamers site since they both exist elsewhere. The developers part of the name was meant to signal a focus on doing rather than playing, even if not everyone on here is working in a commercial company.
I am happy to discuss what type of support or collaborative we can offer to indie projects or companies based in Ireland above and beyond what we already do. But these have to be realistic – we do not have a staff or significant resources here ready to project manage major new projects.