We’re not going to get modular POS for a long time. That’s pretty much a given, with what’s been said. It’s just too complicated to modify the POS code to allow it, due to the big ball of mud programming that plagues any large software project. (Just slap new features onto older code, because doing it any other way would take a really long time, relatively)
But, perhaps, we could have a smaller change done, which should require less interaction with the main POS code. I’m making a number of assumptions when I’m talking about this, which may or may not be valid.
There are a number of places where working with POS is somewhat painful. The changes which have happened recently with the removal of the 3km limit have helped a lot, but I’d like things to go a little further.
The main change I’d like is: Change assembly arrays and labs modular. So you can deploy a single array (of each type would be fine) and then expand it. So no more having a POS with 4 advanced labs. You’d have a Lab that you could expand with more lab slots, of the varying types. Probably in packs, to reduce the min/maxing potential.
If you could do it with a single Industry structure, that would be even better. Storage modules, assembly modules for each of the different types, and so on. But I can see the restricted manufacturing slots, and the different speeds of labs being a trifle complicated to manage.
Once that’s all in place, you may be able to expand it further, to include more and more of the functionality of the POS.
Ideally the space factories could be anchored somewhere other than at a POS. Just give it a fuel bay module, and a module for power generation. (Yes, I know the ‘Just’ is making it sound simple. It’s not.) Possibly shield extenders modules, hardeners and so on. Tying them to moons is less than ideal, in my mind. Deep space factories would be neat.
As I’m wanting the moon mining to be shifted off into a totally different structure, to allow for raiding, perhaps once that’s all done, the old POS code could just be retired?
And yes, I know this would get rid of bubble shields. Which some people consider to be very important. If they’re really needed, how about an anchorable structure, such as the warp disruption bubbles? Though I’m a fan of my other suggestion, for having it possible to switch off your warp core, and then be unable to be scanned down. Which would be a similar result, if you’re not unlucky enough to be scanned down at your safe before you switch off.
And yes, this all came to mind by me being annoyed about moving materials between assembly arrays. A single storage pool would be nice.