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UnrealSP.org update status

For discussion about UnrealSP.org itself.

Moderators: ividyon, Semfry, zYnthetic

How would you like the navigation bar (at the top) to behave?

Poll ended at 26 May 2014, 16:09

Leave it at the top of the page. If I need something, I can scroll up.
3
60%
Scroll it along with the viewer! I don't mind a little less vertical space.
2
40%
 
Total votes: 5

User avatar TheIronKnuckle
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Subject: Re: 29/10/13: New forum style || Changelog of site/forum updates

Post Posted: 02 Nov 2013, 12:40

I couldn't tell you exactly what's changed, but suddenly the forums look extremely sexy.
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User avatar ividyon
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Subject: Re: 07/11/13: Background image poll || Changelog of site/forum updates

Post Posted: 07 Nov 2013, 17:29

Analyzing our current design and the new design further, I realized that the fixed elements of the page eat quite a bit of processing power, the large background image in particular. It seems that, no matter what, a fixed background image will make site scrolling a somewhat choppy affair even on highest-gen computers, while letting the background scroll with the page makes the experience buttery smooth.

Rather than making the decision myself, I decided to put it to the vote. Do you feel that UnrealSP should definitely keep the fixed background image to add flair around the content? Or would you consider it fine if the background eventually faded into black as you scroll down, as long as it meant the scrolling isn't as choppy?

(Note: the current forum performance counts as 'choppy'. If you use 'smooth scrolling' on Chrome or Firefox, you may realize it doesnt scroll as fluidly as it could, since it has to re-draw the entire background image on every frame.)
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User avatar Semfry
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Subject: Re: 07/11/13: Background image poll || Changelog of site/forum updates

Post Posted: 07 Nov 2013, 18:06

It would be better to be able to try both first (or just have the option to choose), but I think performance is pretty much always better.
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User avatar TheIronKnuckle
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Subject: Re: 07/11/13: Background image poll || Changelog of site/forum updates

Post Posted: 08 Nov 2013, 08:03

I don't notice any choppyness and never have. I'd prefer to keep the visual flair.

However I understand that just cause I don't feel it doesn't mean it's not there, and for some people who are more sensitive it can be really annoying, so I wouldn't resent the change.
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User avatar Raven
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Subject: Re: 07/11/13: Background image poll || Changelog of site/forum updates

Post Posted: 08 Nov 2013, 09:46

Or make option forums to allow both fixed background and faster (alternative is to make a copy of finished design and just change css thus people will be able to chose between two forum styles).
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User avatar Frieza
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Subject: Re: 07/11/13: Background image poll || Changelog of site/forum updates

Post Posted: 10 Nov 2013, 12:20

I really prefer if the background image remains static, gives it a nice 3d-ish effect somehow :o

User avatar salsaSkaarj
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Subject: Re: 07/11/13: Background image poll || Changelog of site/forum updates

Post Posted: 12 Nov 2013, 17:08

Static rules!
Most flashy stuff tends to slow down any system.

edit: Whoops I voted for the wrong (the bottom) option. And it's because under static I understood a fixed background which doesn't move when scrolling in the forum.

User avatar TheIronKnuckle
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Subject: Re: 07/11/13: Background image poll || Changelog of site/forum updates

Post Posted: 20 Jan 2014, 03:28

Broken poll graphics:


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User avatar Teridax
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Subject: Re: 07/11/13: Background image poll || Changelog of site/forum updates

Post Posted: 20 Jan 2014, 13:45

I'm not sure if this is the right place to report non-forum bugs, but the icon for U227 on the Upcoming Maps page appears as text ([u227">). It works fine on the forums, though.
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User avatar ividyon
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Subject: Re: 2014/05/19: Progress screenshot || Changelog of site/forum updates

Post Posted: 19 May 2014, 16:01

Punk Development not dead! :) After being forced to shift development to another platform again (this time, the page will be based entirely off the newest in-development phpBB 3.1 software, to allow seamless integration of all the features), motivation had died for a loooong time. However, with the help of ebd and Wire (the latter not part of our community) I've managed to learn the basics of how the damn thing works - despite almost zero beforehand experience - and development has picked up pace again in these last two days!

As always, what you see is in-progress and subject to change; particularly the "old" icons you see. The forum database isn't ported onto this development platform, which explains the lack of posts. However, I still felt like sharing this with you all:

<Aaaand it's gone, because outdated!>

Feedback is always welcome. :)

New poll:
While the side menu might have too much content to scroll along with the viewer, like it does with the current main page... would you like the navigation at the top to latch onto the screen as you scroll down?

PPS:
I can't believe I haven't finished this in, what, 2-3 years now? Imagine my embarassment when I edited the first post and saw 2011... eek.
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User avatar StalwartUK
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Subject: Re: 2014/05/19: Progress, new poll! || Changelog of site/forum updates

Post Posted: 20 May 2014, 16:36

Not bad though I do like how in the current setup the background shows through the page. Bit too much empty space for my liking especially on the bottom left.

I'm not fond of scrolling navboxes on pages. I always find it throws me off when I try to do something (YouTube is particularly guilty of this).
StalwartUK
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User avatar ividyon
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Subject: Re: UnrealSP.org redesign status

Post Posted: 12 Jun 2014, 17:38

I renamed the thread to be more obvious in what it's about.
----

I've been keeping a daily progress log during my work on the website these past few weeks. I believe that it might be an interesting way to tease the upcoming release, particularly without any context being given, so I've compiled the changes below. \o/ Enjoy the read!

Can you guess at which exciting new features are coming to UnrealSP.org? What are you looking forward to? What would you like to see?

  • Improved navigation looks (navigation is the horiz. bar at the top, menu is the sidebar)
  • Fixed buttons
  • Changed post buttons from images into regular buttons
  • Fixed signature
  • Fixed post body
  • Improved list detail colors
  • Added styling to 'panel' elements
  • Added styling to index page 'stat blocks'
  • fixed notifications
  • fixed user CP
  • fixed private messages
  • USP responsive code: made site width switch gradually from 70% to 90% the smaller the resolution gets
  • added Advanced BBCode Box
  • styled ABBCode (spoiler & bars; will need new icons)
  • improved looks of some forms (quick reply, UCP stuff)
  • Re-adjusted dropdown & navigation styles (more gold)
  • added migrations (can now implement mysql tables etc. using extension setup)
  • implemented full list of permissions
  • implemented permission strings (names, descriptions)
  • added basic permission roles/group assignments to migration
  • made first permission checks on review viewing
  • added most services to helper class for lazy coding (will have to set up proper dependencies during final steps)
  • Styled breadcrumbs
  • Introduced breadcrumbs to review pages
  • Added highlighting to targeted posts (linking to specific posts will now highlight the post)
  • Implemented WebM bbcode (will need to merge into BBVideo later)
  • added placeholder for IRC sidebar panel
  • tidied up quicklinks
  • tidied up navigation
  • implemented basic review action buttons
  • tidied up border images
  • unified Cabin font looks across the board
  • started work on UCP module
  • Progress with User Control Panel. Stuff actually displays now, though nothing can be changed yet.
  • New per-user settings: "fixed background image", "display scout-kun".
  • Made reviews use the same template as articles, with conditional statements to decide what gets displayed
  • Fixed "forum rules" CSS; going to experiment with forum rules on forums like Project Presentation (this sucked)
  • Considerable progress on the article creation/edit page.
  • Added basic support for article-based header images
  • Upgraded to 3.1.0 beta4 from beta3.
  • Edited forum index: Placeholder for "latest news", introductory paragraph for guests, re-ordered and re-styled link list. The forum index will be the new home page
  • TREMENDOUS progress on review submission/editing.
    • Fully finished form.
    • Functioning preview.
    • Most variables are prepared for entry into the database
    • Almost functional! Will likely be finished today/tomorrow
    • Fancy javascript courtesy of Wire updates the total scores and colors as you input them.
    • Looks neat to boot!
  • Changed Project Platforms to be based on the "tags" field; removed "platform" field. Multiple platform selection, yay!
  • Changed most template links to use {ROOT_PATH}, just in case
  • Cleaned up MySQL tables, assigned better indexes etc. Man, that was a mess.
  • Generated BBCode UIDs for all article text.
  • REVIEWS CAN BE EDITED!!!!! With the respective permissions, of course. Lots to clean up in that code.
  • BBcode now functions in reviews.
  • Fixed small style discrepancies caused by b4 update
  • Small topic body style tweaks
  • Improved panel class styling.
  • Made more style elements depend on the panel class.
  • Fixed alert pop-up boxes (such as subscribe topic, add friend etc.)
  • Fixed viewtopic quickmod/jumpbox
  • Introduced Font Awesome. This will be a thing for UnrealSP icons. That way I don't have to make so many images!
  • Changed a LOT of buttons to use Font Awesome instead of phpBB icon images.
  • Improved h1/h2/h3 etc. visuals
  • Finished article submission
  • Finished review submission
  • Finished article editing
  • Finished review editing
  • Finished article (un)publishing
  • Finished review (un)publishing
  • Finished article (un)locking
  • Finished review (un)locking
  • Cleaned up menu code
  • Implemented Recent additions menu item
  • Finished article deletion
  • Tweaked review display code to also display articles
  • Various fixes around the submission form
  • Unpublished articles now display an "awaiting approval" tag
  • Implemented proper permissions for article actions
  • Added USP ranks and smilies
  • Implemented news.
  • Implemented Latest News box on the index page.
  • Added RSS feed for news posts
  • Added RSS feed for recent additions
  • Shifted search to navbar
  • Boatload of HTML/CSS markup QoL changes
    • Made some post elements absolutely positioned
    • Made navbars absolutely positioned
    • Moved article actions into article header
    • Moved article information to linklist elements
    • Fixed post title not being in the h3 element
    • Improved preview postbody
    • Improved signatures
    • Improved signature preview
    • Improved PM view
  • Tags are now displayed for non-reviews
  • View and comment counts are now displayed
  • Fixed and improved article teasers; they now don't cut off in the middle of sentences.
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User avatar salsaSkaarj
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Subject: Re: UnrealSP.org redesign status

Post Posted: 12 Jun 2014, 18:52

ividyon wrote:...
Can you guess at which exciting new features are coming to UnrealSP.org? What are you looking forward to? What would you like to see?

  • Improved navigation looks (navigation is the horiz. bar at the top, menu is the sidebar)
  • Fixed buttons
  • Changed post buttons from images into regular buttons
    etc... etc ...


WOW, what a list.
I'm not sure if you're planning to do all of this or whether you want a selection.

Just a word of warning phpBB 3.1 is in beta stages (version 4 IIRC) and changes are drastic. I've done a complete overhaul of a couple of phpbb2 forums to version 3 (including many modifications of my own), and am now slowly working on an update to V3.1 (just to be well prepared when it it released). Frankly ... it's a pain, specifically my own modifications.
So, if you are planning to run UnrealSp.org for many more years (and think you may decide to go for 3.1), then have a look at the changes in 3.1 to see what's compatible and what has to be redesigned to avoid problems later. Functionality is only one of the problems, layout, theme responsiveness is a pain in the *ss (to me).

User avatar ividyon
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Subject: Re: UnrealSP.org redesign status

Post Posted: 12 Jun 2014, 19:03

salsaSkaarj wrote:
ividyon wrote:...
Can you guess at which exciting new features are coming to UnrealSP.org? What are you looking forward to? What would you like to see?

  • Improved navigation looks (navigation is the horiz. bar at the top, menu is the sidebar)
  • Fixed buttons
  • Changed post buttons from images into regular buttons
    etc... etc ...


WOW, what a list.
I'm not sure if you're planning to do all of this or whether you want a selection.

Just a word of warning phpBB 3.1 is in beta stages (version 4 IIRC) and changes are drastic. I've done a complete overhaul of a couple of phpbb2 forums to version 3 (including many modifications of my own), and am now slowly working on an update to V3.1 (just to be well prepared when it it released). Frankly ... it's a pain, specifically my own modifications.
So, if you are planning to run UnrealSp.org for many more years (and think you may decide to go for 3.1), then have a look at the changes in 3.1 to see what's compatible and what has to be redesigned to avoid problems later. Functionality is only one of the problems, layout, theme responsiveness is a pain in the *ss (to me).


That's a list of things I've already done. :) There's still a lot of vital features to go, but I've come a long way!

The new UnrealSP is built entirely from scratch, by me, on phpBB 3.1 and its new extension system. Other than phpBB, no existing CMS was used, and absolutely nothing will be used from the current site and forums except for the actual content (articles, reviews, users, threads, posts, PMs etc.) It is an entirely fresh approach. 3.1 made it a LOT easier to develop for phpBB, as extensions are standalone, can be enabled and disabled at will and aren't as much of a giant mess as MODs were.

I've heavily modified proSilver to adapt it to my existing site design, and it's working beautifully; I will, of course, have to go through all templates and get rid of phpBB's responsive scheme, as I have my own in reserve - or even try to merge them - but, while annoying, I believe it will be totally manageable.

Developing UnrealSP has always been a learning journey from the start, because I started out without ANY but the most basic PHP knowledge and worked my way up to be able to confidently navigate HTML5, CSS3, PHP, MySQL and phpBB's various functions. Since this new start on 3.1 was my first real foray into properly modifying phpBB (beyond just applying existing hacks and tweaking a template here and there), I've had the advantage of being able to learn the new extension system with a clean slate, as opposed to transferring over from the old modification system. However, as you may imagine, it also led to complications due to a lot of things still being undocumented, as it's a beta... however, growing pains have been mostly dealt with and I'm pushing forward now. :)
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User avatar salsaSkaarj
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Subject: Re: UnrealSP.org redesign status

Post Posted: 12 Jun 2014, 20:05

ividyon wrote:That's a list of things I've already done. :) There's still a lot of vital features to go, but I've come a long way!

The new UnrealSP is built entirely from scratch, by me, on phpBB 3.1 and its new extension system. ...

Ow, seems I missed some news about you developing it from scratch. Seriously, that's some achievement (and something I've thought about also but don't have the energy or time to accomplish).
But you just gave me an idea for myself: getting rid of de reponsive scheme altogether (although I only have 1 site left online and was thinking of closing it due to lack of time (and commitment).

Anyway, that list is work done ??? I bow in respect!!

Upgraded to 3.1.0 beta4 from beta3.

hmm, just noticed that now :oops: so basically my whole post is completely out of place (I should be more awake at this time of day).

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