Static website conversion

From Chinese Watch Wiki

As of January 2024 the Chinese Watch Wiki is a static website

I took the step in early 2024 of converting the Chinese Watch Wiki from a genuine Wiki, which could be edited by community members who signed up for an account, into a simple static website. This means it is no longer possible to register for an account, log in to an existing account, or make changes to the contents. The search and random page features also no longer function.

While I believe the information presented by the Wiki remains very worthwhile and valuable to the small community it serves, the simple fact is that registrations, logins and edits have been very, very, very rare for several years now.

Meanwhile, I fell quite far behind in keeping MediaWiki and PHP up to date. Really quite far behind. It felt like only a matter of time before some security vulnerability in an old version of something would lead to the site being vandalised, which would have been a terrible shame. A static website on the other hand remains very secure with no ongoing maintenance effort. Also the Wiki would sometimes go offline due to some obscure technical failure, and I would not notice for quite a long time as I no longer use it regularly myself. Once again, a simple static website is extremely reliable and requires no close attention.

I acknowledge it's a pity to rule out new additions or corrections, but I feel this course of action is far better than either taking the Wiki down or letting it continue to languish in a vulnerable and unreliable state.

Please do rest assured that I am committed to keeping the Chinese Watch Wiki online indefinitely. Even though I am not active in the VCM community any more, I remember my time there very, very fondly, and I still have my forum project watch. :) Shout outs to AlbertaTime, Saskwatch and Chascomm!

- JF Sebastian, January 4th, 2024