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DS8 Design Phase

DS8 Design Phase

Postby IrascibleOne » March 30th, 2015, 9:08 pm

It may not seem like it, but I've been working hard on DS8. Basically been doing a lot planning, deciding, and making sure this project runs smoothly. The reason I bring this up after a month of work is that DS8 is in the design phase! :Dance: That means lots of input from you guys! :D

Basically, DS8 is all about saving me time and giving us a solid, majestic, and truly glorious base to build onto.
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  • Backend Updates: PhpBB is the primary reason why I started working on DS8 instead of continuing DS7. My goal is to use a single code base so the site isn't split between the forum and my own code. I know some of you might not think this is a big deal, but it'll get rid of my biggest demotivator for working on the site, it'll make future additions to the site easier to create, and it'll mean you'll see new stuff to use more often.
  • Improved Functionality: In the process I will be improving existing functionality. I want everything to work quickly, smoothly, and intuitively. So, there won't necessarily be anything new, be everything will simply work better and be more fun to use (at least that is my hope).
  • Everything Updated: I mean it, everything on the entire site will be reviewed, updated, improved, redesigned, and made better. This is a fresh start for DS in terms of how things work, look, and feel.
  • Improved Social Media: I will be looking into automating as much of the social media as possible. The site's RSS is already set up to show the most popular works each week, so if I can hook into that, I can do more and save time. This goes back to the idea that if you support DS, then DS will support you (but automagically!).


What do I need from you? I need to know what the most important features of the site are to you, particularly in the forum. Why? So I can focus on making those features super awesome in DS8 and I can make sure I don't end up removing your favorite feature when I drop phpbb. If I hear nothing, all I can do is guess, so this is pretty important. Thanks everyone!
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Re: DS8 Design Phase

Postby brektzar » March 31st, 2015, 2:01 am

Well for the forum i think that a good editor, with all the usual formating options is important. I also think that good mod and admin tools are extremely important.
If i warn someone, you should see that in a log, and if you ban someone i should se that in the same log, basically like the log in PhPBB.

Ill think of other stuff later, currently im on a break from work but have to get back to it now :P
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Re: DS8 Design Phase

Postby Alpha 3D » March 31st, 2015, 3:40 am

Um, I think the chat box is very important... But I don't really know...
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Re: DS8 Design Phase

Postby IrascibleOne » March 31st, 2015, 5:43 pm

Thanks guys!

@brek: Okay, I can make sure to look into moderator functionality. I honestly hadn't thought much about that yet. Phpbb's permissions, groups, and moderator functionality has always felt messy and unnecessarily complex to me anyways.

@alpha: That's okay, that's perfect! The chatbox is definitely something I can focus on keeping and making better for DS8. If you happen to think of anything else you want to make sure I keep on the site (or improve), feel free to let me know!
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Re: DS8 Design Phase

Postby brektzar » April 1st, 2015, 11:28 am

I would like some way to put members accounts on hiatus pending your review, since we have seen some unwanted attention here lately i think that could be good.
Here i do not have the power to temporarily ban someone(even though PhPBB has that functionality if you would allow it, this is not a hint at all :) )
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Re: DS8 Design Phase

Postby IrascibleOne » April 1st, 2015, 9:57 pm

Message received! :lol: If I can find it and the setting and it doesn't need to be changed in 12 different places, maybe I will.

Also (this is for everyone) how important are forum signatures to you? If I pick forum software that doesn't have signatures included, would that be something you'd sorely miss or would it just be fine to have a place for you to enter links to your social media accounts and whatnot?
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Re: DS8 Design Phase

Postby IrascibleOne » April 12th, 2015, 11:20 pm

Updates! Right now I am starting to look at what other sites have and looking at tons of inspiration to get a better idea of how I want to design the UX and UI of DS8. So, if you know of other sites that are similar to DS that have awesome features, interfaces, or anything awesome in general that you think I should look into as I continue to design the site, please let me know!

FYI: Things are moving at a steady pace and I am right on schedule. After I research other sites and designs, I'll be creating a high level outline of the site, I'll figure out every bit of content that goes on every single page of the new site, then I'll be designing wireframes, and finally design how one will interact with the site. If all goes according to plan...that means mid/late May is when I will start building DS8.
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Re: DS8 Design Phase

Postby Renix » April 13th, 2015, 6:31 am

Are you using any PHP Frameworks?
I highly recommend Laravel, I've been using it for the past year and a half and it's been a wonderfully robust MVC and CRUD framework. I've used it for web applications and to create server APIs for mobile applications. The documentation is also very well-written.
For UX/UI, I see that you already have a responsive layout, are you using Bootstrap?
I like the frontpage already, you can probably add infinite scrolling there.
Alternatively, AngularJS is a front-end Javascript framework which handles server calls in an Ajax-like manner. I particularly like it when sites load content like that. The documentation is also nice and it plays well with Laravel.
As for PHPBB, I'm indifferent, but I do like this design, it's almost like I'm not using PHPBB at all. I like having sigs, but I suppose I can also live without them. Have you looked into Discourse? I'm a bit on the fence about it, for some reason it feels a little disorganized in comparison.
Also, we might as well get rid of the Imantu-dedicated stuff still laying around. I don't even know what the Imantu tag does.
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Re: DS8 Design Phase

Postby IrascibleOne » April 13th, 2015, 12:23 pm

Thanks for the input!

Yes, I will be using a framework. I have not decided on one yet, but something that would make it easy to get off of phpbb with most of the existing data intact would be a big plus. Laravel and CodeIgnitor both look like good options, but I'd have to roll my own forum. I've looked at Vanilla because it includes a forum that would be easy to ship phpbb into. I've also used Phalcon at work, which I quite like, but I'd have to upgrade to a server I can install it on to use it and it's pretty light when it comes to some of the helpful classes Laravel and CI have. So many options, so many pros and cons for all of them...will have to make a decision in the next few weeks though.

HTML5 Boilerplate, Bootstrap (to some extent), and I'll probably stick with jQuery and if I make charts I'll probably use D3. A lot more AJAX will be used in DS8 to make the site work a more fluidly.

I've looked at Discourse quite a bit and flip flopped on it. The biggest issue is no MySQL support, which is my only option with my existing host. It's also written in Ruby, which I've never used. Normally I wouldn't have a problem using Postgres or learning a new language, but I don't want to add more to my plate than I already have. Don't really like the attitude of the creators when it comes to some topics either, but that's a totally different matter.

I think the Imantu tag is still functional at the moment, but it's only there to make sure old posts still work. Imantu will probably go away for good when the domain is set to expire next. Should probably look into that.
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Re: DS8 Design Phase

Postby Renix » April 15th, 2015, 6:35 pm

Still recommend Laravel. Laravel 5 is a sweetheart. There are a few auth bridge options for Laravel and PHPBB, but they're not well documented (I'd just roll out my own). Plus, you can alway ask me for Laravel help if you need it.
The grid system is the main reason why I use bootstrap. The other options and components are nice to have just in case too.
Hooray for more Ajax!
Ah, that's right, I forgot Discourse didn't use MySQL and was written in Ruby. Fuck Postgres.
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Remove the button, but leave Imantu as a tag. If someone figures out that it still exists and uses it, then it'll make their text rainbow colored.
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