This might seem like a quiet report because it's been a quiet month - our new Magistrates and course writer are settling in nicely and we haven't had any major course announcements since my last report. Because of that, I wanted to utilize this report to dive a bit more in-depth into what exactly the SA Staff has been doing since I took over as Headmaster. Ood has requested I avoid the word audit, because it makes people want to jump off cliffs, so instead we'll be using a... different term for it.
As I mention at the close of each report, the Shadow Academy is a huge repository of information written by Viewers Like You. Written by dozens of individuals over the span of years, there's bound to be typos, formatting errors, or ambiguities. When you add in the fact that we've seen a major evolution in the canon of both SW as a whole and our little corner of it, the SA is in need of changes in a thousand different ways. I don't have the time, energy, or knowledge to successfully do this myself, which is why the entire SA Staff is engaged in the process - Marcus, Ood, Ophelia and Rins'zler, and the entire crew of Professors and Docents. We're dividing, conquering, and seeing some definite results. Here's just a few of the accomplishments we've seen so far:
I could keep on going for a while highlighting the work different individuals are doing, truly. It's a very time-consuming and thankless task, but the end result will be a Shadow Academy that is cleaner and clearer. Summer slowed us all down from the time line I had originally planned, but I am confident in my team's ability to continue the momentum we've been building and wrap this up. Our goal is to be as thorough as possible, and if that takes a little more time then so be it!
Marcus and I had a good time reading your fiction for the JM fiction comp we ran in July, and I want to thank you all for entering. This month, I'll be running a fun Flash game comp I ran across recently. It opened up today and will run until the 31st of this month. Just as before, it's important to note that this is a JM-only competition, so anyone ranked EQ1 or above when they submit their entry will be disqualified. If you submit as a JM4 and are then promoted, that won't be a problem. We've been toying with the idea of doing an EQ/EL-exclusive competition to balance the JM-only one, but I'm not sure yet. Thoughts? Let me know in the comments or on Telegram.
Shadow Academy Staff are currently engaged in the following projects:
SW History Department Rewrite - Aabs & Farrin: Because of the evil Darth Mickey, my beloved Galactic History courses aren't fully canon anymore. The courses are being pared down (almost in half) and will be added to the Legends Department. This is still behind schedule because of our focus - Aabs' and myself - being elsewhere. With the addition of Lexic to our team, though, I think we can finally make the push to get this done. Estimated completion: End of August, 2016
DJB History I & II Update/Rewrite - Alishu: Alishu has completed first drafts of both courses and they've been sent to the DC for approval. There are some changes in canon that we need to work through, and the DC has been focused on other things (It rhymes with Mossessions and starts with a P), so this got shifted down in priority. I'm hoping to see it done very soon. Estimated completion: End of August, 2016
The Dreaded... AUDIT! (non-SW courses) - PROFs/DOCs, Farrin & Ood: The non-Star Wars courses will be audited for accuracy, typos, etc. Exams are going to be reconfigured and updated. I said last report this would be done by this report, and though we've made solid progress we're not quite there yet. We will be soon though. Expected Completion: August, 2016
The Dreaded... AUDIT! (SW courses) - PROFs/DOCs, Marcus, Rins'zler, Ophelia: The Star Wars-based courses will be audited for accuracy, typos, etc. Exams are going to be reconfigured and updated. This work has already begun by our awesome staff, and I think we're on track for my original expected completion. Expected Completion: September, 2016
Operation Remodel - SA Staff: In an effort to streamline the organization of the Shadow Academy and make it easier to initially get to information and then to find similar information, the SA will see a fairly extensive reorganization. The audit takes precedence, but expect to see more about this later on this summer. Because of the delays in the audit, this has been pushed back slightly. Expected Start: 8/2016; Expected Completion: 9/2016
Operation Prereq - Farrin: In order to make a more focused new member experience, different options are going to be explored to create prerequisite courses before other courses open up to a member. This is on the back burner for now, as the SA Staff has more pressing matters (y'know, the stuff above this item) and it'll require some tweaks on the coding end. Expect more info on this over the summer as well. Expected Start: Unknown; Expected Completion: Also unknown. :)
There are some other really exciting things in the planning stages that aren't quite ready for prime time yet, but hopefully will be within the next couple of months. Stay tuned, sports fans.
|Name||# of Exams||# of ACs|
|Novice Dain Cathis||22||8|
|Acolyte Jason Kane||21||6|
|Neophyte Ar'ekk Daesharacor||19||4|
*Not a typo - that really says 50. Xolarin's been a beast.
Note: these numbers cover the period from 7/13/16 to 8/16/16.
The Shadow Academy covers tens if not hundreds of thousands of words, and those words were written by imperfect humans (GASP!). We try our best to catch and fix any and all errors before we release courses, but we're not always successful. Because of that, we will always need your help. If you spot an error, please report it to the SA Staff using this simple form; if it's a major enough error, or you spot enough, you'll be rewarded. At the very least, you'll get the thanks of a grateful HM... that's got to count for something, right?
In Darkness -
Headmaster of the Shadow Academy
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