Hey Relight users,
So you might have noticed that the last release was way back in November. There are a couple of reasons for that, and I’ll explain them momentarily. First, I want to dispel any concerns that the project is dying. Relight is fine, I’ve just had less time to work on it than I used to.
Last October, I found out I needed to look for a new job. That slowed Relight down a little since it took a bite out of my free time. The main thing that slowed Relight down, though, was the new job itself. Transitioning to a new job is always stressful, and you usually feel like you are drinking from a firehose—learning new systems, meeting new people, Googling terms about your new insurance provider. This transition was even bigger for me because I made the jump from usually doing about 40/60 design/development to being more like 30/70. And on top of that I jumped from older technologies like Wordpress, Drupal, and PHP to using newer technologies like NodeJS, VueJS, and other stuff mostly that ends in JS.
The exciting thing about the transition is that I now use many of the same technologies that I used to build Relight as part of my day job. That means I should have lots of ideas for new features, and in general become more effective at building Relight because of everything I’m learning. But it’s also just meant that after a day of writing Vue JS code, the last thing I want to do with my evening is sit down in front of the same text editor and write more Vue JS code (even if it is for something different). I’m starting to get over that, though, and hoping to dive back into Relight soon. I have a couple of ideas for quick features to get out the door to convince you all that you can find a pulse on the project.
Previously, Relight was funded by an anonymous supporter who basically paid me to work on it one full work-day per week. This was an amazing opportunity and it only really worked out because my previous employer was totally cool with me only working four days a week. That situation started in January of 2021 and ended at the end of December of 2022. I’m now only able to really work on Relight on evenings, weekends, and paid holidays. To be clear, though, Relight started as a free-time project and we made really good progress on it in those first couple of years—that’s when we got things like the Westminster Standards and Calvin’s commentary, for example.
I already mentioned some quick features and quality of life improvements I intend to try to get out the door in the next few weeks.
I also spent November and December working on a complete rewrite for search that should make it a lot smarter. Not ChatGPT level, but maybe closer to modern Google-level. Relight should hopefully eventually start to understand relationships between things, like the fact that Romans 3 is largely about justification, or perhaps recommend Psalms to sing that are related to a topic or passage you are studying. Eventually, we’d love to get to the place where (for example), if you search beliefs of Socinians, you get results that primarily relate to Socinians, not to belief/believe. Or if you search for Sabbath, it knows that’s related to the Ten Commandments and specifically the fourth.
I made really good progress on that goal, but obviously progress will be slower now that I have less time to work on it—so I really have no idea when you might see something on beta.
We also hope to do some audio releases in the coming weeks and months as well.
Thank you all for your patience. We hope to start getting some cool stuff out soon.