We're currently developing the minimum viable product (MVP) and are already hosting the Web Monetized Comic Challenge. For those who don't know, the Web Monetized Comic Challenge is a 3-month long competition that aims to invite artists from all over the Philippines to publish and monetize their webcomics using the privacy-respecting web monetization standard. This competition also challenges artists to create comics that shed light on the privacy invasiveness of ads and the problems surrounding them.
The number one challenge for us is working on this project while going to college at the same time. Despite all that, we are still very positive that we will be able to attain the objectives within the 6-month period.
Before we could start developing the frontend of the website, we had to come up with a mockup first. It took long for us to come up with a design we were okay with. After long deliberation, we have come up with these designs. Here are a few snaps of our mockup.
This is the homepage and the comic title page. This is the competition feed and the vote modal. These are the create comic pages.
The development of the backend started with the designing of the structure of data to be put into the database [MongoDB]. By then, the first structure being laid out is the admin data and blog data. After, this was then implemented using Nodejs and Express. The result was that all backend calls to handle admin and blog queries were implemented. The next step was to create the layout for the blog site and connect it into the backend to provide all necessary data. The last step for this portion was to deploy it and use it for our first blog post/announcement. The blog site was successfully deployed using Heroku and Godaddy. Alongside the blog site’s deployment is the deployment of the placeholder for the Fliptoons website, for it to be not blank when a user accesses our site and to redirect them to our blog and official social media accounts.
The next big part of the development was to handle user accounts, with this, the structure of user data was planned out and implemented to the backend afterwards. With the user auth ready on the backend side (signup, login, change password, etc...), the next step was to create the front-end for these functionalities. The necessary auth-related pages were created using NuxtJs (a Vue framework that supports SSR) and eventually connected to its backend functions. Now, all initial user/auth related functionalities were done.
Following the auth portion is the comic uploading section of Fliptoons. With this, same as the previous portion, we started structuring the data then implementing it on the backend. As of the moment, we are finalizing this portion on the backend to provide queries/functionalities to upload and view comics on the backend. In this portion we utilized a media service called Cloudinary to store all image assets efficiently and easily. When this is ready, the development of its frontend counterpart will be implemented, and by then the initial features for our initial public release will be ready.
One of the key activities we have done in the 1st half of the competition period is the announcement of the Web Monetized Comic Challenge. We created our social media channels, gathered participants, and were able to hire reputable comic icons in the Philippines as our judges. Another is the completion of our website mockup and designs. And one of the most significant thing we have done is starting the development of the website.
We will continue developing the website and continue hosting the Web Monetized Comic Challenge. We are still in the process of building our MVP and look forward to launching it by the first week of November. We will closely communicate with our artist and reader users for feedback.
It would really help if the Web Monetization community can help us grow the Fliptoons community by liking and sharing our social media pages, and interacting with our posts. If you're a webcomic artist or reader please try using the site, share with you friends, and give us feedback.
You can read our full project update in the Web Monetization commmunity. That is all for now. Thanks for reading our update! 'Til next time!