Evolution of worlds updates

marcus the mad

Senior Forum General
Staff member
This is a general update thread for the evolution of worlds GIF images.
Here we (myself or Vanimo) will try to post whenever we (deliberately) take the server offline for maintenance or when the software gets updated.

Evolution site
Here you can fine all servers for which the GIF images are currently created and updated.


Update on the server (2016/12/10 10:06):
  • Been planning to house the server in a bigger chassis and put the disks on a raid card. Now a case has become available, I've moved everything this week, but forgot to notify that the tribal wars gifs would be offline for the duration.
  • All the data has been moved to a different drive and everything still seems to work. So now I can try to get these drives working on the RAID card.
  • We're currently running the tool to generate the GIF's, so expect new GIF's later today.
Goals (2016/12/10 10:15):
Note: Although we can trigger the gif-creating tool automatically, the program itself is a half-day effort so far and sometimes runs into issues. So to keep the current images safe until we verify the new gifs, we generate them into a separate folder after a manual trigger.
  • Improve on the scraper tool to only store updated images.
  • For speed and classic worlds, detect when they reset and separate these images.
  • Detect if a folder has new images and only then update that GIF.
  • Convince Marcus to create a website.
Last edited by a moderator:

marcus the mad

Senior Forum General
Staff member
Updating has been postponed due to a multitude of issues:

- The software to produce the .gif images crashed due to memory issues
- Multiple images over the past few months were corrupt
- Attempts to gain access to the server were made (and failed)
- The server has been worked on
- Our internal network was significantly changed

Because of these, both Vanimo and me took time to:

- Remove all duplicate images
- Remove all corrupt files
- Remove erroneous maps

Most of these we can't do much about as we grab the maps from Alex's generated maps. We've got a backup with all the removed files just for safety, but this cleanup will have a few benefits for you guys as well: the gifs will be more fluent and will jump around a lot less.

Due to this cleanup we went from a total of 450.000+ images to a mere 207.193 and took about 16 hours.

The website will get an update, the software for our gifs will be adjusted and we will try to get new evomaps out soon.


Hey, a little more clarification:
The initial tool was some hack and slash code that took less than 4 hours to make. Spent some time now to optimise a lot of the scraping and giffing. It's not perfect yet, we have a few more ideas that could increase the speed of the giffing, but let's see what we have first:

- We no longer scrape the image if it was not updated. (Thanks to the date-time tag on the link.)
- Besides removing these duplicate images (another tool), the provided images are sometimes erroneous too, which had to be manually removed.
- When building the gifs, it should now keep track of which worlds have gotten new images, significantly reducing the amount of work for the tool.
- The slow and fast versions of the gif are now built from the regular gif rather than complete rebuilds. These extra timings now only cost a few seconds to make compared to a gif that would take a minute to build.

Currently building all the gifs again, don't think it'll be finished tonight, but should be updated tomorrow.

What I'd like to do in the future:
- Have simple webpages to browse the gifs rather than the HTTP host's folder browser.
- Include the individual images in the website.
- Try to add new images on top of the existing gif. If this works with the library we use, we might be able to update the gif daily (if the performance is as good as we hope it to be).
- Get a refund on the holidays I spent working on this.


marcus the mad

Senior Forum General
Staff member
As many may have noticed, our server has gone offline.
The duration of this is undetermined and will probably last a while if not indefinitely.