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Thread: A Simple Forum

  1. #26
    SitePoint Enthusiast doddsey_65's Avatar
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    While I do need to take things like a plugin system into consideration they aren't at the forefront of my mind at the minute. I still need to work on a lot of things to finish the core of A Simple Forum and still need a lot of beta testing.

    From this post and other posts on forums/social networks I have around 2,000 views. However the site only gets 1 maybe 2 visits per day and none of them are interested in testing or even engaging. Need to think of a better way to promote it for beta testing
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  2. #27
    SitePoint Enthusiast doddsey_65's Avatar
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    Just a quick heads up. I have added documentation to the forum in the form of phpDocumentor. This will help those of you wanting to read through the code and understand it a bit more. Or it will do once I have added some comments to my code (never been one for doing this).

    You can access the docs by clicking on the "Documentation" link on the forum or by going here.

    The only one that is complete is the small language class located here. From this you will be able to get a general idea of what use this will be.

    If you want to help with commenting (since its low on my todo list) then you can fork the repo on github, add some comments and then submit a pull request. This would really help (as would some general testing).

    Thanks
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  3. #28
    SitePoint Enthusiast doddsey_65's Avatar
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    Okay lets get the ball rolling with some discussion. This is an internal list of things I have planned. Items ending with a ? require some discussion before I decide. If you want to add anything to the list then please do. Would love to get some thoughts on this.
    These are not in any sort of order btw.

    Moderators
    - Add notes to a users account which will be visible in moderator and admin sections (Eg: This user could be a bot). This enables mods and admins to "watch" users who become suspect.
    - Perform actions of a batch of topics at once (via checkboxes). EG: Delete 7 selected topics
    General
    - Post revisions. Users will be able to click a link under an edited post to see all revisions of that post

    User Settings
    - Changes to profile settings from within the profile page with one click
    - Profile background images
    - Ability to move modules around on their profile?
    - Themes that override admin options?

    Admin Settings
    - Basic template editing such as colors. Admins will be able to select a color for pre defined sections of the site (EG headers, footers, links)
    - Several email templates that can be changed easily from within the admin panel

    Editing
    - Markdown editor (may show preview pane or may be updated on the fly)

    I also want to point out a feature that hasn't been documented on as of yet. Admins can choose how to handle double posts. I've been on a lot of forums with strict rules on double posting and users have had to be warned due to this. With A Simple Forum the admin has 3 config options to target this.

    Allow: Double posting is allowed
    Disallow: Double posting is not allowed (User will have to edit last post)
    Merge: Another post is allowed but it will be merged with the last post under a heading of "Update".
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  4. #29
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    Maybe if you give an indication on, say, a scale of 1-5, where 1 is easy, 5 is hard,how easy each feature is to implement.

  5. #30
    SitePoint Enthusiast doddsey_65's Avatar
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    @Kiwiheretic They are all easy to implement. I would give a rating of 2 to all of them :P
    Test and help out with a new
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  6. #31
    SitePoint Enthusiast doddsey_65's Avatar
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    Also, since I consider Discourse to be my main competitor in terms of revolutionizing the forum market, here are some stats from GTMetrix: http://gtmetrix.com/compare/KNC92CBN/Rwmgm9k8

    Some of these things cant be helped (like gravatar avatars) and discourse does have more content on the page.
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  7. #32
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    In addition to being able to delete, I think mods should be able to move. eg. a PHP page that outputs faulty mark-up posted in PHP but should be in HTML

  8. #33
    SitePoint Enthusiast doddsey_65's Avatar
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    Maybe due to tiredness (4:30am here) but I dont think I understand this bit:

    eg. a PHP page that outputs faulty mark-up posted in PHP but should be in HTML
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  9. #34
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    Sorry, I should have said "PHP forum instead of the HTML forum"
    Sometimes a member might have trouble deciding what forum to start a thread in. Another example, my PHP database code doesn't work so I start a thread in the Database forum. But it becomes realized that the problem isn't with the database schema or query, and is a mistake with the PHP code. If left in the Database forum (presumably frequented by database pros) it likely won't get the help it would get if it was in the PHP forum (presumably frequented by PHP pros)

  10. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mittineague View Post
    Sorry, I should have said "PHP forum instead of the HTML forum"
    Sometimes a member might have trouble deciding what forum to start a thread in. Another example, my PHP database code doesn't work so I start a thread in the Database forum. But it becomes realized that the problem isn't with the database schema or query, and is a mistake with the PHP code. If left in the Database forum (presumably frequented by database pros) it likely won't get the help it would get if it was in the PHP forum (presumably frequented by PHP pros)
    Does VBulletin not have that already? I am sure myBB does. Bit surprised to hear that some forums don't have that.

  11. #36
    SitePoint Enthusiast doddsey_65's Avatar
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    I will be providing the capabilities to move topics. These will follow the batch methods aswell so mods can move several topics at once. The admin will also have to option to display a ghost topic or not (the topic in the original forum is still displayed but servers as a redirect to the new location like Sitepoint (VB) does).
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  12. #37
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    Yes, vBulletin does have it. Just that post #28 had "batch ... eg. delete" but didn't have "move" anywhere so I was just making sure.

    I just noticed that Private Messages isn't there. Could be a pain, but might some want and expect it?

  13. #38
    SitePoint Enthusiast doddsey_65's Avatar
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    Private messages are in the works (I should have mentioned that the list is not comprehensive and just a few ideas I had while looking over other forums). If I recall the very first version of A Simple Forum had private messaging so yes it will defiantly be a feature and a bit better than VB's , you will be able to see previous replies to messages within the current message rather than having to go back to the inbox and look at the previous message.
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  14. #39
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    I'm curious. What makes it "Simple"?

    eg. lightweight pages, easy install, easy to use, less code bloat at the expense of some of the usual features?

  15. #40
    SitePoint Enthusiast doddsey_65's Avatar
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    You know I have only been asked that question once @Mittineague. It was originally supposed to be a very simple forum. Few features, small code base (no MVC and custom router). But I kept adding features to it and thinking of bigger and better things, but the name stayed. Even though changing the name now would have little impact on SEO and page ranks I feel compelled to stick with it (I hate naming projects). The install process, however, will be simple. It wont be "one click install" as there are a few settings that need to be defined but it will be a complete "guided wizard" and a lot quicker than something like phpbb.
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  16. #41
    SitePoint Enthusiast doddsey_65's Avatar
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    Recently added assetic to ASF to handle CSS and JS minification and compilation. Users can choose which form of compression to use, from YUI, Google Closure or basic minification. The former 2 will require Java and the relevant Jar file.

    Also big thanks to @kiwiheretic for all the help so far.

    If anyone wants to help it would be a great help. I still need unit tests writing, documented code and several basic features still left to do. I have also setup a github page where developer documentation will go.
    Test and help out with a new
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  17. #42
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    One of the lessons I think we can learn from wordpress is their excellent developer documentation. I wonder if this is the reason why they have such a large array of plugins and themes. I also consider it a factor in their success.

    Even though I do alot of mobile browsing these days I think a distinct advantage of this forum is that it has considered javascript functionality at the start. That's probably why vanillaforums hasn't taken off the way that discourse has. Also, if not more significantly, is that Jeff Atwood is a well known brand in the programming blogging world. However branding can only go so far and eventually a forum platform has to stand on its own merits.

    One of the things that seems to be being touted for Discourse's success is that it's written in Ruby on Rails. I think that has the least to do with it. I think the fact they are using Ember.js with all its "eye candy" is much more significant.

    Anyway, what I am saying, I believe it's getting the front end right is much more significant in its success than what language the back end is written in.

    I believe that, with enough vision and time, that ASimpleforum can be better than Discourse.

  18. #43
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    Ok, I asked another question here about Javascript frameworks:

    http://www.sitepoint.com/forums/show....php?t=1198479

    Several of them came to the forefront: AngularJS, EmberJS, CanJS and BackboneJS. In the interest of DRY (Don't Repeat Yourself) do you think any of these could be helpful in producing a competitive user experience? Or is it better to go for a completely custom solution in this case?

  19. #44
    SitePoint Enthusiast doddsey_65's Avatar
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    Most javascript frameworks handle page rendering too and are designed for heavy JS apps. Although A Simple Forum uses a lot of JS it is mainly a PHP orientated site. I use twig and twig JS to render templates which would lash with other JS frameworks (Ember uses handlebars for example).
    Test and help out with a new
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  20. #45
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    Yeah, I have mixed feelings on heavy JS myself. Especially a factor when considering the mobile market I think. I'll look inro Twig JS and study up on that.

  21. #46
    SitePoint Enthusiast doddsey_65's Avatar
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    I have started to add some development documentation which can be found on the guthub page http://cjmarkham.github.io/asimpleforum/
    Test and help out with a new
    100% open source forum package: A Simple Forum
    Check the A Simple forum Github Page
    Visit my Github profile to see what I work on.

  22. #47
    SitePoint Enthusiast doddsey_65's Avatar
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    I really need to commit these things when I change them :P

    Untitled.png
    Test and help out with a new
    100% open source forum package: A Simple Forum
    Check the A Simple forum Github Page
    Visit my Github profile to see what I work on.

  23. #48
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    Looks like you've been busy

  24. #49
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    Hopefully I'll get a chance to checkout your changes tomorrow.

  25. #50
    SitePoint Enthusiast doddsey_65's Avatar
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    Hopefully I will push them all by tomorrow :P Currently working on a mention system which is nearly done.
    Test and help out with a new
    100% open source forum package: A Simple Forum
    Check the A Simple forum Github Page
    Visit my Github profile to see what I work on.


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