Forum issues

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Rob
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Forum issues

Postby Rob » Sun Aug 25, 2002 4:53 pm

#1 in an undoubtedly long series.

The times being shown are GMT, but not DST-compensated. Sorry, but it's not something I'm going to get too worried about right now. Sooner or later I'll read the phpBB2 docs and fix it.

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Postby Rob » Sun Aug 25, 2002 7:31 pm

I'm kinda using this particular topic as a way to remind myself of things to look into, etc. Not today, but as soon as I can.

'Foreign' avatars seem to be working, but I think we ought to have a few hosted ones and allow people to choose from them.

I'm not sure how fond I am of the emoticons display, and the tag buttons, when you're posting a message. I'd prefer a slightly larger font in the text box, at the expense of other stuff.

If anyone has any thoughts on that, feel free to holler.
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Postby Babbster » Sun Aug 25, 2002 7:36 pm

Fortunately, it's easy to compensate in the Profile area. For example, instead of being -8 hours GMT here in Portland (Pacific Daylight), I'm actually -7 hours until we "fall back." Not that big a pain in the tuckus at all, so I wouldn't worry much about.

For others not as quick on the uptake, here are the settings you should have in your profile if you're here in the Continental US:

Pacific - GMT -7 hours
Mountain - GMT -6 hours.
Central - GMT -5 hours.
Eastern - GMT -4 hours.

These are, of course, adjusted for Daylight Savings Time, so if you live in an odd area that refuses to recognize DST, simply subtract one more hour from GMT. :)
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Postby Rob » Sun Aug 25, 2002 7:38 pm

Doh! Good point. I'll go and adjust myself accordingly.

I've actually found the bit of admin I need to play with to change the board's idea of time, but I'll leave it in peace for now.

I have a bunch of docs here to sit and read... (I may be some time!)
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Postby Rob » Sun Aug 25, 2002 7:42 pm

Post counts. I'm not convinced, myself.

I put in a few ranks, jokingly, for people as they reach different post counts. I'm not sure that showing the post count itself is a good idea though.

And, of course, the 'survivor' rank overrides anything to do with post counts. I may think of something more prestigious for the Pit vets, in time.
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So, responses can have subjects, too?

Postby Bag of Ass » Sun Aug 25, 2002 7:55 pm

Hey, I gotta say that this software seems much better than the stuff they have at PA. It's nice to not have to log in every thirty fucking seconds.

Regarding postcounts, I would prefer it if the message listed the user's postcount at the time of writing, as well as the total postcount.

Also, on the day of the Pit's closing, I was frantically searching for a new forum to become part of, and I ran across Safety Monkey's. I was actually quite impressed with some of the ideas they had there, and also how pretty the forum was. I guess I just like blue. Heh, any word on whether we'll be able to customize this one?

One thing I thought was a great idea was the idea of Karma. I think Gamefaqs forums have it, but it's user-controlled, so people are too god damn polite there for their own good. At Monkey's forum, it's moderator-controlled. So everyone starts at zero, and when they get maybe -5, they lose posting privileges. If someone writes something I am particularly impressed with, I could bump them up a point. If they write something I have to edit or delete, they'll lose one or two points. What do you think?

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I don't have a problem with post counts...

Postby Babbster » Sun Aug 25, 2002 7:57 pm

but of course I don't relate them to my penis size, as some others might. If I post a lot on a forum, it means that I'm enjoying myself, rather than an attempt to make myself look "big" (I don't need any help in that area, being a typical overweight American). :D
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Postby Bag of Ass » Sun Aug 25, 2002 7:59 pm

Another thing I'd suggest is to somehow make it so that sigs are limited to text only. Images are what your avatar is for.

Basically, I dislike the idea of the sig...especially when it takes up way more space than your actual post does.

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Postby Rob » Sun Aug 25, 2002 8:02 pm

I like the idea of karma - I hadn't come across that before, but it sounds cool.

As for the forum layout and colour scheme - my understanding is that we can provide several different ones online for you to choose from - something else that I'll look into when I return.

I must admit I personally like a darker screen to this.

I'm pretty sure that things like total-at-time-of-post and current-total post counts could be done; the software is basically a shitload of template screens, style sheets and clever stuff. If you're interested in learning a bit about it, it's phpBB2 and I got it from http://www.phpbb.com. There are online manuals and stuff there - we're running it on with PHP4 and MySQL3. If you look at their styles section, and visit the demo part, you'll get a clue as to how configurable the system is. Whether or not I can learn enough about it to make the changes we want is, of course, another matter!
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Postby Lobstrosity » Sun Aug 25, 2002 8:05 pm

I second the idea of having each message affixed with a specific post number (rather than always reflecting the total number of posts the poster currently has). On a side note, I really wish I could think of a good synonym for "post/poster" right now. That way a person's 1000th post would always have the number 1000 by it and a person's first post would always have the number 1 by it. It seems a nice way to demarcate memorable posts. It seems like a fitting place to see a person's total postcount would be under his profile, which could tabulate statistics like total posts and average posts per day. Of course, is this sort of thing even possible? By the way, great forum, Rob.

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Postby Bag of Ass » Sun Aug 25, 2002 8:06 pm

robsoft wrote:Whether or not I can learn enough about it to make the changes we want is, of course, another matter!

I have much faith in you, robsoft. I mean, you banged this son of a bitch together in a couple days. There should be no reason you can't figure out the postcount thing or the karma thing (if you decide to implement it).

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Postby Rob » Sun Aug 25, 2002 8:14 pm

Woot! (or wtf it is).

We just made our first "second page".

Now it's definitely time to go and have some food and drink - I've been sat in this chair fucking around with this stuff since 9:20 this morning, and it's now almost exactly 12 hours later. Apart from a can of Pepsi and a dash to the bathroom, I've been sat here with this all fucking day.

Catch you shortly, my lovelies.
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Postby Bag of Ass » Sun Aug 25, 2002 8:20 pm

Is there any way to customize a posts-per-page on a user-by-user basis, or at least can we get maybe 15 or 20 posts per page?

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Postby Rob » Sun Aug 25, 2002 8:25 pm

Sure - I can set it to 20. Though it'll make a nonsense of my previous post!

I don't know if it's user-configurable, but I've certainly seen the site-wide default option.

Hang on....
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Postby Rob » Sun Aug 25, 2002 10:00 pm

Right. I've lived with this forum software for almost a day now, and I'm totally impressed with it.

Any and all shortcomings of this forum are down to me - the guys that have developed phpBB2 are fucking gods. If any of the PA regulars could post "Fast" Eddie_Bax a 'kudos' message from me I'd appreciate it - Eddie first put me onto this stuff, although subsequently other people popped up in my inbox and suggested it too.

I don't know what the speed of the board is where you all are - it's actually hosted by an american hosting company, and as the URL might have suggested, it's currently tagged onto the back of my 8bit gaming site. It seems pretty responsive here right now, but with only 300Kb in the database and a dozen reg'd users, you'd expect it to be quick!

I'm serious about soliciting suggestions, so go for it in here. What I'd rather do now is to let you all live with the system for a few days, and when I come back from my op I'll read through the comments and ideas and then we can maybe pick the most appropriate ones and try to implement them.

I think the PM system is really nice, and I'm impressed with the quoting and the overall 'design' of their system - though I think that some of the layouts could be improved. From what I can see, they use template files and css; it's not rocket science and I'd expect to be able to pick it up and made modest changes quite quickly. (Big headed twat!)

Enough babble. Time to sit back and see if tonight was a one-off, or if we are going to start getting some folks in here. If I stopped trying to reply to everyone's posts, it might encourage other people to say things... :oops:
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Postby toaster » Sun Aug 25, 2002 10:03 pm

I've spent 15 minutes just browsing the forums, so far I'm impressed

Nevertheless, I got some suggestions/comments:

I agree that sigs should be text-only

The same with the post-counts, specific for every post.

Am I wrong, or does the registration offer you the option to choose your personal site layout? This would be great, and you wouldn't have to choose a particular one as standart.

Maybe you should remove some of the post options e.g. front size, although it sounds nifty having them, I can almost feel the upcoming abuse, if this thing would attract more people, than only Pit survivors (one day).

Are there plans to get more people into here via links? Without fresh blood this thing is very likely to run dry some day, also, it wouln't be the same without SOME Wichswichtel around. (emphasis: SOME)

Maybe there are a too many forums (3 instead of 5) , i'ts probably to complicated to keep track of everything, but I'm not sure about it.

If you manage to get the borg-smiley from somewhere, I would love you.

Amen
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Postby Bag of Ass » Sun Aug 25, 2002 10:04 pm

Yeah, this forum software kicks ass, and with a few more tweaks it'll be fucking awesome. It's much faster and convenient than the PA forum...no more logging out woes. God, that was especially bad in the private forum, where you might be expected to log in three or four times to read one post, and forget fucking posting there reliably.

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Postby Rob » Sun Aug 25, 2002 10:29 pm

Good, good feedback. I don't know about the forum speed - the jury is still out because we're not exactly taxing the baby. And it's on the wrong server. So we'll just have to see.

Plus, having read a bit more about the template system, there is a lot of redundany css information being sent down in the pages that could be jettisoned if we moved to a single layout style. Though I like the idea of being able to choose from a couple of different ones - we'll have to see what's best.

Have you noticed how the topic review window shows posts in reverse order? Very nice touch.

I'd go along with the text-only sigs myself. And I think that there is far too much clutter around when you're on the enter post type screen.

As for new blood - feel free to bring it in. I've taken to PMming new registrations and asking them if they are on PA and what their PA nick was (where it's not obvious). That's just to get the survivor thing going - I guess now I'll just wait for survivors to attract the attention of a mod and we'll fix up the rankings.

I'm hoping to get a work-colleague on here - he rags me all the time with banter and abuse, and he's a pretty sharp tack, I think he'd enjoy the company of you lot and I'm sure you'd appreciate his ability to make me look a complete twat. :lol:

The logging-in woes used to drive me nuts at PA - some of you may remember me trying to write a windows hack to keep your cookie refreshed (in the end I discovered that something is going on at their end too, and keeping the cookie fresh wasn't enough - although I'm sure that there was probably a way had I persevered longer).

Finally - things like preset avatars and smileys are all available for this system. Feel free to surf the phpBB website for ideas. We're using their stock software, straight off the shelf.
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Postby Lobstrosity » Sun Aug 25, 2002 10:37 pm

I think the quoting layout and color scheme here is far superior to that of the PA forum. I tend to agree with Toaster, however, that for such a fledgling site there may be too may fora. As I expect the frequency of fresh posting to be on the low side (at least initially) it might be more convenient for browsing if the majority of it was located in one or two of the fora rather than being distributed over five. The ones I see as being most useful would be Fuckmuppet Central, Ministry of Truth, and Feedback. New ones could always be added as the site grows...

..

Names..

Postby .. » Sun Aug 25, 2002 11:11 pm

I, obviously, had a slight problem registering. That and I got impatient. So when you have the time, you guys can delete this name, if I can get access to ".". I'm used to my short name.


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