Discussion Forums Updated!

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Discussion Forums Updated!

Postby beardie » Thu Sep 04, 2014 10:25 pm

[TOPIC AUTO-LOCKED DUE TO INACTIVITY]

Hey everyone! Some of you may have noticed a slightly different look to the discussion forums recently. I've applied some updates that offer a cleaner and more consistent look, some bug fixes, and a new feature. Here's a summary...

- The templates have been updated to match the look and feel of the rest of the site. In addition, they now display more consistently from page to page, rather than occasionally resizing the main area.

- We've upgraded two update version with the forum software we use. With that should come some bug fixes. I think I had worked around most of them myself over the past year or so, but now they're more officially fixed.

- Now this is my favorite part... Similar Topics!!! Go to any topic while you are logged in, and you will notice that at the top of the topic, there is a button to "View Similar Topics". This will jump down to the bottom of the page (or you can scroll), where you will see a handful of topics that are similar to the one you're on. It's based on the search function and extracts out what it thinks is the best key words to find similar topics. It's not perfect, but is pretty good!

- Some may not be happy with this part... I've disabled the User Blog feature. That was one that I added into the software myself, and was requiring too much maintenance when I would update the main software. Since I was only seeing 1-2 posts a month in the blogs, I decided it was not worth keeping around. If you need your content from your blog, I still have it in the database and can help you get it. Just let me know.


In the future...

I will be keeping an eye on the newest big upgrade to the forum software that phpBB is working on. I expect it will be out within the next few months. I will wait for it to "settle" before considering it for our site. But the next update will be a significant jump. They redesigned the layout significantly to make it more user friendly, and easier to navigate from mobile devices. In addition, they're enabling a feature to allow people to login to this site using your Facebook login. This will help reduce how often people are frustrated with forgetting their password. But also, if you remain logged into Facebook, a quick click will automatically log you in here! I am looking forward to what else they are planning with the upcoming major version upgrade.

For now... enjoy these updates! Please let me know if there are any issues that you encounter.

Cheers,
-Alex
Not a vet, just a concerned keeper
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Re: Discussion Forums Updated!

Postby diamc » Fri Sep 05, 2014 3:45 pm

The forum looks great Alex. The background coloring is easier on the eyes and I even find it more relaxing.

The "Similar Topics" feature should be very useful especially for a member that needs to find an answer quickly.

Thanks, awesome job.
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Re: Discussion Forums Updated!

Postby brandymulvaine » Sat Sep 06, 2014 3:54 am

Thank you!
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Re: Discussion Forums Updated!

Postby Drache613 » Sun Sep 07, 2014 9:28 pm

Hello Alex,

The forum looks wonderful! :D
I like the new colors, it is well blended & the layout is appealing too
Thanks for all of the work. Wow another upgrade soon?
The Similar Topics is very helpful, too. I think a lot of people will definitely use that tool.

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