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IP.Board 3.2.0 Dev Update: UserCP and Misc. Interface Updates

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One of our main goals for IP.Board 3.2.0 was to revamp certain areas of the interface to make it easier to interact with the board. We also wanted to put controls at your fingertips rather than make you root through pages of settings. This blog outlines some of these changes.

User Control Panel
In many ways the user control panel follows the old computing convention of a special area for configuration and settings. The idea being that you keep all configurable elements in a single location. This works well for the most part but there are many times when you have to go looking for a setting to control how the board works often meaning you have to leave the page you're on, change the setting and then return to what you were doing. We wanted to move specific controls to their contextual location.

We've also merged a few areas together such as "Settings" and "Profile Information", "Email" and "Password". This reduces the number of links and allowed us to merge the "Profile" and "Settings" panes into one.



We've revamped the User Control Panel and stripped down many of the settings and put them in their relevant areas. For example, we've already moved the View New Content settings into the View New Content interface.

The attachment system now 'sniffs' out whether the user can use the better Flash based uploader and uses that if no other settings have been set. If the user decides to switch to the basic uploader, then this preference is stored and used on the next page load.



You can now disable your personal messenger from within the personal messenger itself. You can elect to do this if you do not want to receive PMs from other members. Once it has been disabled, you can re-enable it by visiting the personal messenger again at any time.



There was a single option to remove signatures from the topic view. We've enhanced this to allow you to remove a single user's signature if desired. When you mouseover a post, a little "X" appears in the signature. clicking this brings up a menu.



Ignoring a user's signature will add them to the 'Ignore Preferences' page so you can remove them.



Other Enhancements
The current "Mark As Read" found in the board's footer marks all applications as read which may not be the desired result. In IP.Board 3.2, clicking this link brings up a menu so you can mark a single applications or all applications as read.



We've removed the old style forum jump form drop down interface in favour of a much enhanced "Quick Navigation" link that is in the footer of every single page. This Navigation panel is extensible via the application's extensions folder so third parties can update their applications to take advantage of it.



The tabs down the side are loaded by Ajax, so you can quickly tab between all your applications to locate the page you want.

We've also gone ahead and updated all the areas where the mini profile card was activated with the green icon next to a user's name. Currently you have to click this icon to load the mini profile card.
Now, simply hovering over a user's name will make the mini profile card appear.



The main user drop down menu has also been enhanced. You can now update your status via the menu which means you can do this from any page on the board.



We feel that these small enhancements make a huge difference in your workflow and in the general feeling of the board.

Feel free to comment on this blog entry below or, if you have feedback unrelated to this blog entry, start a new topic in our feedback forum. If you have feedback related to changes beyond what this entry is referring to, please start a feedback topic. Be sure to check the What's New in IP.Board 3.2 topic for a running list of announced changes!


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69 Comments



Posted

When's it due for release? Really looking forward to it!

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Posted

I love the frequent updates. I hope you will keep ramping up development like you do.

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Posted

holy cow. That entire interface looks sexy and unbelievable.

Amazing.

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Posted

All I can say is WOW! That looks so much easier to use and there are only 3 different areas to click instead of 100!

Nice job!

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Posted

These frequent bursts of updates could mean that we're going to be a public beta soon, or something.

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Posted

There is no smiley on this board that can express my happiness at seeing these changes. I'd go have a celebratory beer, but it's 6AM...

Nick² likes this
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Posted

Ace! A+! Time to buy new license when 3.2 comes out :)

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Posted

All that is good apart from removing the forum jump, this is used no end and from the looks of that 'enhancement' it's not been improved, i don't want a big pop up to appear. The forum jump works fine as it is.

HPSam likes this
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Posted

[quote name='marklcfc' timestamp='1303302450']
All that is good apart from removing the forum jump, this is used no end and from the looks of that 'enhancement' it's not been improved, i don't want a pop up to forum jump.


1. It removes the rather large drop down menu on every topic page.
2. The new quick navigation offers much more options and visibility than the old forum jump.
3. Most importantly: building the forum jump menu was very resource intensive so this change will have a real improvement in the performance of the software.
4. The link to quick nav and the forum jump are both toward the bottom of the page. I don't see the difference there.
5. The end user experience is the same: you click something, get a popup of some sort, and then click something else to go elsewhere. It just looks different now.
6. The new interface shows much more than just a forum list meaning a user can quickly navigate to other areas of the community.

So you get more usability and performance improvements and it's still the same two clicks to get somewhere else as the old way. That is an improvement if I ever saw one.

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Posted

Nice job!

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Posted

Well, I think it will take longer to change forums Charles and its all about navigating through the site with ease. Forum home option is missing by the way (the most used I would guess)


What about those with just a forum and no other addons?

6. The new interface shows much more than just a forum list meaning a user can quickly navigate to other areas of the community.

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Posted

[quote name='marklcfc' timestamp='1303302753']
Well, I think it will take longer to change forums Charles and its all about navigating through the site with ease. Forum home option is missing by the way (the most used I would guess)


It doesn't take longer: same two clicks as now :)

The screenshot shown is an install with just forums and no other addons. The "Community" tab are links to things like view new content, member list, and other global areas.

6. The new interface shows much more than just a forum list meaning a user can quickly navigate to other areas of the community.

What about those with just a forum and no other addons?

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Posted

SICK!

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Posted

This new forum popup is a great improvement imho. :thumbsup:

I always skinned out the ugly forum-jump select menu, but now I will certainly consider adding this again!

AlexJ, Matt, Nick² and 2 others like this
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Posted

This is the most impressive blog entry so far, very frustrating not knowing when it will be available to use though.

Miss Moiraine and AlexJ like this
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Posted

[quote name='marklcfc' timestamp='1303304561']
very frustrating not knowing when it will be available to use though.


I agree. :D Everyone is waiting for it :)

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Posted

Looks great. 3.2 is coming along nicely. :)

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Posted

I'm so glad this has been fixed. The UCP has been such a hassle to my members. Now...I want to know more about the "follow system" that Charles said we would have heard about already a week or 2 ago.

Nick² likes this
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Posted

I don't see much point in being able to ignore individual users' signatures, but okay.

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Posted

[quote name='Ryan H.' timestamp='1303305379']
I don't see much point in being able to ignore individual users' signatures, but okay.

Useful if someone has a 2mb image that slows the site down

Maxxius likes this
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Posted

Will the Previous Post, Link back to topic list, and Next Post links remain where they are now?

I actually had complaints when the Go button went away.. apparently many people were used to hitting that Go button to get back to the topic list, until I pointed out the above mentioned links.

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Posted

What's that #1 in this picture http://www.mattmecham.com/skitch/Fullscreen-20110420-123635.png ??? Reputation points ??? Isn't reputation dead in 3.2 ? It seems a little out of context.

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Posted

Reputation is certainly not dead in 3.2. :) We added the "like" mode but they still count as reputation points.

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