Coin Zoo Gets Upgrade

About two-and-a-half four years ago (3 years, 10 months to be exact) I decided to take a little break from building my Coin Zoo. At the time, I figured I would get back at it during Christmas break -- in 2006, that is. Then in mid-2007 I thought I would get back at it during Christmas break, a whole year later.

Now, just after Christmas break 2009, I decided to get back at it. But, before I started adding more coins to the zoo, there was another little issue to take care of first. Actually, three issues.

First off, the core of this site runs on Joomla and the Joomlaverse was moving forward but Daniel's Coin Zoo was stuck on an old version. Then there was the matter of the template, that is, the way the site looks. I had spent a lot of hours creating the Coin Zoo look, and the template would have to be created from scratch. Lastly, the coin collection here is presented using a script called Hot Property, which is for real estate. The existing Coin Zoo relied on a heavily modified version of the HP script.

Amazingly, this whole three-stage process went surprisingly well. I've had some experience migrating from Joomla 1.0 to 1.5 (why oh why didn't they call it 2.0?) and I have also begun working with Joomla Junkie's "Morph" template system which made that part pretty painless.

The scary part was going to be Hot Property. I had modified so much code so many years ago and the new HP system was completely different. But to my delight, I found that the databases were identical, so importing was easy. And the next wonderful surprise was that most of the hacks I made years ago were now available through simple options. Hooray!

So, after a lot of time this past weekend, the new Coin Zoo is live! Next step: start adding more countries and more coins, starting with the United States of America (because that is the one I get asked about the most).