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Maintenance Website Updates for 2022-08-18: Major Forums Design Overhaul + New Features

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Wendell
(@wendell)
Posts: 5398
Founder Admin
Topic starter
 

If you've been here since late last night, you've probably already noticed the changes to the forum design. Most of the underlying code was completely rewritten to bring everything up to date with current technologies and forum design trends.

With that said, here's what has changed:

  • The overall forum design was updated. The layout is mostly the same with some improvements. The biggest change in the design can be found on the forums index page. There you will see new stats and layout for each forum, as well as a header image for each section.
  • The Recent Posts page didn't really change much in terms of how it looks. We moved the forum reference out of its own column and added a line under each title with the appropriate forum icon.
  • For individual topics, we've added a super-informative topic overview banner that shows some cool stats. Even better, there's a dropdown panel you can open to show who's participating, as well as a clickable post tree.
  • The members directory and profiles system received a complete overhaul. Feel free to browse around and check out the new goodies. Maybe even update your profile!

 

New features:

  • Cover photos: Now you can add a cover photo to your profile. The default cover photo is actually a portion of a boundary survey of several sections I did in Tucson, Arizona several years ago of the San Xavier del Bac reservation.
  • Topic suggestions: When you create a new topic, as you type in your title, the forum will check to see if there are other topics that are similar to your topic. This should help with duplicate content.
  • Member following: Now you can follow other members.
  • Bookmarks: Each post now has a bookmark icon; click that icon to add it to the list of bookmarks in your profile for later reference.
  • Member ratings/titles: The icons are the same but instead of displaying the number of posts for each level, we've now named the levels.
  • Code highlighting: Now when you insert code into a post, it will automatically be displayed in the thread with appropriate highlighting based on what kind of code it is.
  • Letter avatars: Instead of having a default avatar for everyone that hasn't uploaded one, the forum now looks at your username and creates a "letter avatar" for you. It's much easier on the eyes when looking at the "Online Members" widget in the sidebar.
  • Search bar: I've added forum search to the sidebar.
  • Like/Dislike: Now you can like or dislike posts. If you click the like button, you'll like the post just like usual. But you can also hover on the like button and you'll be given the choice of liking or disliking the post.

 

I'm probably missing a few things, but that covers the big ticket items. 🙂 Plus, more stuff coming soon!

 
Posted : August 18, 2022 4:42 pm
Jon Payne
(@jon-payne)
Posts: 1220
Member Member
 

I really like the minor adjustments.  It seems to have a more orderly look to it even though it hasn't changed much.  But it is not so different from the previous version as to have to hunt for anything.  Some of the new features sound neat.

Great job Wendell!

 
Posted : August 18, 2022 4:49 pm
Wendell reacted
Dave Drahn
(@dave-o)
Posts: 255
Member Member
 

I can't believe you haven't built in a personal data mining routine that aggregates group to individual analytics - enabling the site to learn how to best target our specific interests and ultimately even our unspoken desires.  As a bonus you would be able to one day part it out to the feds for their use and large profits!

Come on! It's the 21st century!

 
Posted : August 18, 2022 5:10 pm
Wendell reacted

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Wendell
(@wendell)
Posts: 5398
Founder Admin
Topic starter
 
Posted by: @dave-o

I can't believe you haven't built in a personal data mining routine that aggregates group to individual analytics - enabling the site to learn how to best target our specific interests and ultimately even our unspoken desires.  As a bonus you would be able to one day part it out to the feds for their use and large profits!

Come on! It's the 21st century!

Ooh great idea! Haha just kidding 🤣

Seriously, nothing like that will ever happen on my watch!

 
Posted : August 18, 2022 6:27 pm
Dave Drahn reacted
Wendell
(@wendell)
Posts: 5398
Founder Admin
Topic starter
 
Posted by: @jon-payne

I really like the minor adjustments.  It seems to have a more orderly look to it even though it hasn't changed much.  But it is not so different from the previous version as to have to hunt for anything.  Some of the new features sound neat.

Great job Wendell!

Thanks Jon!

 
Posted : August 18, 2022 6:30 pm
Wendell
(@wendell)
Posts: 5398
Founder Admin
Topic starter
 

I forgot to mention one other new feature: Now you can like or dislike posts! Just hover on the like icon and you'll be given the option to choose like or dislike. Optionally, you can just click the like icon directly and the post will be liked.

I've updated the original post accordingly.

 
Posted : August 18, 2022 8:43 pm
Brad Ott reacted

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Brad Ott
(@brad-ott)
Posts: 6144
Thor (god of thunder) Supporter
 

@wendell I clicked dislike just to see how it would feel.  It felt good.


GIF
 
Posted : August 19, 2022 7:04 am
holy cow
(@holy-cow)
Posts: 23784
Member Member
 

@brad-ott 

It felt good to be turned into Steve Erkel??????????

Tried it on your post.  Now, I feel dirty and cheap.  Allow me to apologize for being so uncaring and discourteous to you.

 
Posted : August 19, 2022 7:08 am
Wendell and Brad Ott reacted
Brad Ott
(@brad-ott)
Posts: 6144
Thor (god of thunder) Supporter
 

@holy-cow


GIF
 
Posted : August 19, 2022 7:29 am
Wendell reacted

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holy cow
(@holy-cow)
Posts: 23784
Member Member
 

That's what she said.  Or, so I have been told.  I wouldn't know from experience.

 
Posted : August 19, 2022 7:32 am
Brad Ott reacted
toivo1037
(@toivo1037)
Posts: 779
Member Member
 

 

Wendell,

Looks like the color scheme has changed slightly.  If you would, please consider differentiating the colors - darkening up the post bars some (I'm viewing in the recent post tab)

I find that the current color is too close to white, and everything seems to run together now, it is harder to visually scan the posts.

 

 
Posted : August 19, 2022 8:24 am
Wendell reacted
Andy J
(@andy-j)
Posts: 3026
Member Member
 

@wendell     I noticed that too.  will we be able to see the likes and dislikes?

 
Posted : August 19, 2022 10:58 am
Wendell and Kevin Hines reacted

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Wendell
(@wendell)
Posts: 5398
Founder Admin
Topic starter
 

@toivo1037 

Good call! For the sake of consistency, I set those areas to the same background color as used here in the post content areas. I've also added a border to the top of each post in the list to help with differentiating them. Hope that helps! 🙂

 
Posted : August 19, 2022 11:50 am
toivo1037 reacted
Wendell
(@wendell)
Posts: 5398
Founder Admin
Topic starter
 
Posted by: @andy-j

@wendell     I noticed that too.  will we be able to see the likes and dislikes?

Eventually, I hope to make that dream come true. 🙂

 
Posted : August 19, 2022 12:02 pm
Andy J reacted
Wendell
(@wendell)
Posts: 5398
Founder Admin
Topic starter
 

Just added a Bookmarks button to the "My Profile" widget in the sidebar. 🙂

 
Posted : August 19, 2022 12:24 pm

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