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  1. As we approach the end of 2016, I would like to take this opportunity to wish all of our amazing members, old friends and guest visitors a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. To mark the Yuletide occasion, This Is Who We Are has once again been festively decorated with a choice of two themes, Christmas Noel and White Christmas, created by Sherri at IBTheme. For those who prefer the usual default TIWWA Theme, you can select this or any of the other themes from the Theme selector menu at the bottom of any page. Today, I've also updated our community's software with the recently announced upgrade (see previously Staff Blog entry for more details) which sees the introduction of the new built-in 'Leaderboard' which highlights, just for fun, our most popular and active Members, and awards them with Gold, Silver and Bronze Trophies. The awards are also visible on the relevant member's Profiles. I'd also like to take the opportunity to thank our Elder Staff Members, who assist me by helping moderate when necessary and administrate the community, in particular @Libby For many, I'm sure it has been a good year, but also unfortunately for many an eventful, sad and difficult year; in particular for those of us who have lost special friends such as our wonderful Erin @Raven Wolf who loved this time of year, who have lost family members or who have suffered from illness or challenging times. Let's hope 2017 brings a more happier and prosperous year for everyone, no matter who they are, or where they are. This Is Who We Are Graham UK.
  2. In addition to many small bug fixes, this next release includes: For Admins - Accounts flagged as spammers are now more visibly different on the member list in AdminCP The Password form helper can now show a "strength" meter, and set a minimum strength required. Added quite a few new embed providers codepen.io coub.com deviantart.com docs.com funnyordie.com gettyimages.com iFixit.com kickstarter.com meetup.com mixcloud.com mix.office.com on.aol.com reddit.com reverbnation.com screencast.com screenr.com slideshare.net smugmug.com ustream.tv Google Maps (requires free Google API key) Admin - Default location for an AdminCP tab honors the admin's ordering Auto-saved content in the editor will now expire after 48 hours If you load an editor that has previous auto-saved content you will now be prompted to keep or remove it Staff - You can now set pre-filled reasons for Warning actions that will automatically populate the member notes editor when a moderator warns a user Staff - Escape key will now cancel quick-edit on titles Staff - Adds a setting to restrict member birthday view to admins only or to completely disable prompting for birthday to member There are now more "save and reload" options in various places to keep your place when editing content or settings Staff - New check all box when viewing activity on a member profile for easier moderation Staff - You can now hide posts that are unapproved rather than just approve or delete Staff - When a moderator changes the status of a report in the ModCP the system now puts a reply in moderator comments noting the change Admin - When you see a "could not write file" error the file it was trying to write now shows in the error logs You can now quickly edit tags when viewing an item without having to edit it if you have permission If you are using multiple devices to login to a site you will be less likely to be logged out Tags can now be quickly edited when viewing an item Administrators can now create custom RSS feeds for various content Staff - Enhancements to IP discovery tools for moderators Staff - Actions for reports in ModCP now show when status is changed as a comment Admin - Redesigned support tool Password strength rating and requirement option Guest terms of service alert Minimum age requirement Admin- Ban Filters are now Word Filters and can set words to automatically moderate Display name history is now available on profile view Leaderboard Some of the most interesting changes: Better Analytics Integration Tag Quick Edit Default Warning Notes Custom RSS Feeds Word and Link Filters Leaderboard Moderation Improvements Security and Privacy Embeds and Integration The next big feature is the new Leaderboard which we really think will enhance our community. The Leaderboard The new Leaderboard is designed to better highlight our most active members and content based on reputation and other metrics. The Leaderboard will greatly enhance both member and content discovery on our community. First you will notice the new feature of member leaders based on a specific time frame. In the example above it is set to All Time showing those members with the most reputation overall in the community. It also shows the content with the most reputation for the same timeframe so you get a snapshot of both popular members and popular content in one view. The Past Leaders tab (example shown above) shows the "winners" of each day in a history. The system counts all reputation made each day and logs the members who had the top reputation counts that day. Using reputation rather than post count encourages our members to post quality of quantity which is really important to any site. Those who win the day also get a badge on their profile page (see above example screenshot) to highlight that they were the member with the most reputation for a particular day. Top Members shows you a list of all members sorted by various metrics. By default you will see members sorted by reputation but you can also easily sort by total post content TIWWA-wide or per-app. All of these views can be linked directly to so if we wanted a menu item to show members who post the most files in Downloads, we can just directly link to that sort view. There are various settings to control the default behavior of the Leaderboard. We can define the default view and how many members to show which is helpful to tailor it to our needs. We hope you enjoy this initial launch of the new Leaderboard feature. We are excited about the new content and member discovery abilities this offers and look forward to adding new options to the Leaderboard as it continues to develop! Embeds and Intergration Our Community Suite allows for integrations with quite a few third party systems and also can embed content from external sites. We have added a whole new list of embed providers where you can just paste in a link to that site and a nice box will show up embedding the content. You can do that will many popular sites already and we are adding a lot more: codepen.io coub.com deviantart.com docs.com funnyordie.com gettyimages.com iFixit.com kickstarter.com meetup.com mixcloud.com mix.office.com on.aol.com reddit.com reverbnation.com screencast.com screenr.com slideshare.net smugmug.com ustream.tv Google Maps Example - you can them just paste in a link to a Google Map location. So when you paste a link to a Google Map in an editor it shows like this: The maps are also interactive on the screen. We hope you enjoy all these new additions coming in December.
  3. The Old Man

    Coming soon to TIWWA

    Some information for those interested about our forthcoming software update, I've highlighted most relevant in bold... Key Changes In addition to many small bug fixes, this release includes: Performance improvements in: profile view, sitemap generator, posting replies, and Activity Streams More efficient license key checking to keep the keys from being checked too often which can slow the site down Admins - There is now a column in tasks view to show the last time it ran to help diagnostics When a member changes their email or password they now get an email confirmation If group promotion based on date is enable the system will now auto-promote even if a member does not login Admins - There is now a setting to change the number of topics per page in the forum view You can now press ctrl/cmd+enter in any editor window to submit the reply There is now logic to prevent double-posting when the initial post encounters an error on submit Moderators can now remove all followers from an item Contact Us is now configurable with various options Staff - Announcements can now be restricted by member group Admins now have a setting to have members automatically follow content they start or reply to. Members can optionally override this. The editor will now show a message if a link that can be embedded (image, video, etc.) failed to embed for some reason. Admins get more detailed error reasons. Admins - If our datastore (cache system) is not working properly the AdminCP will now show you a warning telling you that it needs attention. When a member is banned/suspended the system now shows a more friendly page with information on their ban. Previously it showed a permission denied page. Security Questions for account security Security Questions To enhance the security of our member's accounts we now have a new security questions feature where we can allow our members to put in their own, personal security questions. The member will then be prompted to answer those questions for account actions admins define. Account Change Emails Members will now receive confirmation emails when they change their email address or password. Automatic Following Our members can already choose to automatically follow content they start or reply to, but now we can define this as the default behavior for all members. Our members can of course override this to their own preference. Embed Failure Message To answer a frequent question "why didn't my media embed?" we now show you why. Regular members will just see a message indicating the Suite tried to embed but was not able to. Admins will get more information on what failed. Suspended Member Page If we banned/suspended a member previously they simply saw a generic permission denied message. We now show a more friendly page saying they were suspended and why. The member can click to get the full information from the Warning System as well. Announcements Global announcements can now be restricted by member group (such as messages for Guests). The following update after this one is still in development, but will include Added quite a few new embed providers codepen.io coub.com deviantart.com docs.com funnyordie.com gettyimages.com iFixit.com kickstarter.com meetup.com mixcloud.com mix.office.com on.aol.com reddit.com reverbnation.com screencast.com screenr.com slideshare.net smugmug.com ustream.tv Auto-saved content in the editor will now expire after 48 hours If you load an editor that has previous auto-saved content you will now be prompted to keep or remove it A batch of moderator improvements.
  4. The Old Man

    Software Update - March 23rd 2016

    TIWWA Software Upgrade - Key Changes For anyone interested... (Much of the following are behind the scenes, technical improvements or areas relating to the administration/configuration of the software. I have highlighted in bold text the points of more relevance to our Members.) This release fixes reported issues and adds refinement to existing features as well as some security upgrades. New or Changed Features When your link auto-embeds in a post such as with an image, YouTube video, Twitter link, etc. an option will now display to revert the embed back to a plain text link if you do not want the embed. New setting to disable embedding. Facebook/Twitter integration improvements If you are an administrator and encounter a system error, additional debug output will now display. Regular members will see the normal error message. If an advertisement is set up with a main image, but not smaller images for tablets/mobiles, the ad would not show at all on tablets/mobiles. This has changed so the main image will display on all devices unless smaller images are provided. Topics scheduled to automatically lock or unlock will now reflect this in the topic listing and when viewing the topic. Placing a link to a Facebook status will embed when possible. When viewing a report, the container (for example, the forum) the content is from is displayed. Three character searches are now allowed in the Admin CP Live Search. The Account Settings page now uses vertical rather than horizontal tabs to prevent overflow. If Gravatar is enabled, and a user has not defined an profile photo, then their email address will be used to fetch from Gravatar unless explicitly set not to. Gfycat embeds now use their oEmbed endpoint rather than their JS API. Using Amazon CloudFront as https provider will now be recognized as valid secure connection. The member REST API endpoint will now return custom fields. The Developer Center for Plugins now shows the filename in the list of hooks, and when editing a hook, a breadcrumb includes a link back to the list. Inline notifications can now be dismissed Efficiency improvements to the search index You can now close a poll independently of the topic Important Fixes In addition to dozens of smaller fixes this release includes fixes for the follow items that impacted many clients: Several security enhancements. The posting parser has been made more efficient. Some BBCode does not parse correctly in version 4 and we have applied some fixes for this. In general BBCode is deprecated so we only provide basic support. Sitemaps could sometimes be blank if there was no content in a specific section. Certain URLs from version 3 were not redirecting properly to the new version 4 format. The timezone detection is now more robust and will more gracefully fail if it cannot determine a visitor's timezone. Permission matrices have been reworked to send less data to prevent exceeding server limitations. Decimal handling has been reworked in Commerce for more precise calculations. The database class now handles InnoDB deadlocks more gracefully, and some queries have been changed to reduce the likeliness of deadlocks. Performance improvements to areas which perform large updates on the members table (for example, when editing permissions). Pages 'number' custom fields previously had an upper limit for submitted values around 2 billion. Multiple fixes for tag searching Activity Stream Improvements The activity stream has a new toggle and filter bar that replaces the "Edit Form" link. It is now faster and easier to customize existing streams and to change the filtering options without having to create new streams. Example of "un-embed" option Facebook/Twitter integration improvements If signed in with Facebook or Twitter, when posting a status update, a checkbox to share on these services appears instead of the old setting to export statuses in the account settings panel. This change ensures IPS4 conforms with Facebook's Terms & Conditions and will pass Facebook's App Review. When setting up Facebook integration, a new setting allows disabling status imports so you do not need to go through Facebook's App Review if you only want to allow users to sign in with Facebook and not integrate with status updates. When setting up Facebook or Twitter integration, the setting to allow automatic sharing is shown in addition to in the sharing settings so it is easier to enable this feature. Facebook integration has been updated to use their latest API endpoints.
  5. I've just upgraded the TIWWA software suite. As with any big update, if you are visiting soon after the upgrade, I strongly recommend that you do a hard refresh to make sure your browser loads the updated versions of the files and isn't using a mix of new and cached old ones which can cause odd things to happen to your experience of our site(!). To do this in Windows, simply hold down the CTRL key and then just press F5 then let go, and it will force your browser to reload all files on the page. There, you are seeing everything as it should be. There are some minor maintenance fixes expected over the next few weeks, which will address any new bugs etc with this latest major update and may add some new features along the way. What's New?! The developers have added dozens of new features, enhancements to existing features, fixed the majority of 4.0 bugs, and made large performance gains. Firstly New Content (some still call it View New Content) is now called Unread Content. There is also a handy link to it as shown below... This will take you to one of the new Activity Streams, which is like a time-line of new content. If you don't like the way a particular Stream looks, (eg. say you want a more condensed view without the content of the posts showing), you can toggle the display between the Expanded (normal) and Condensed Views. The new Menu Bar The new Menu Bar represents how most people use the software suite, by browsing through the existing content to spot or view items of interest or sections of the site such as the Forums, Gallery, etc, much like the old menu system, but it also now provides an easy way to see and catch up with new activity using the Activity menu tab. We can also customise the menu, so we'll soon add useful links to the main website, such as the Episode Guide, Music Guide etc. The image below shows the new Activity tab where you can use the default Activity Streams, or Create or Edit your own streams.... Browser Notifications If you choose to allow Browser Notifications, you will get a small pop up and sound effect to alert you when someone has say, replied to a topic you are following or created a new topic. Smarter Pasting When you paste content from say another website or page, if the editor detects it it is styled content (different font, size, contains HTML or images etc), you can choose to quickly paste it as plain text. Selective Quoting I've a feeling many will like this new feature. You can now hightlight part of a post, and selectively quote it using the pop-up option that appears. When ready, only the part of the post you highlighted will be quoted, which saves time and is much neater. It makes it easier to quote part of someone's post without quoting the whole things, especially if its from a long post when it will save lots of scrolling. A list of changes and new features... Some of the main changes and new features include (I've highlighted the main ones, and removed a lot of the internal stuff from this list): New menu structure and drag-and-drop menu manager Ability to have two menu levels Option to create both custom-link menu items and embed preconfigured menus Preview before publishing All menu items support group permissions Discovery system, a very powerful new feature that allows for both admin and user created Activity Streams Admin-defined Streams always visible to users. Users can edit and save admin streams to create their own, custom copy if they would like to tweak them to suit themselves. The main show-all stream automatically tells you when there is new activity Users can now create their own custom streams User streams can be shared but viewer will only see content based on their permissions Filter options include: All content or specific apps. Some apps support further refinement into categories or content-type. Unread content Ownership Content I posted in Content I started Content by specific members (user can create a list) Content I follow Areas I follow Specific content I follow Posted by members I follow Time Period Any time Since my last visit Specified number of days Specific date range Activity Streams that reference features not available to Guests such as unread tracking and follow system will auto-hide Selective quoting to highlight a bit of a post and quote just that Gallery application enhancements New upload image process Images and movies are submitted to the same upload field Image reviews Editor updates Uses div-mode which is much faster and more reliable. Clicking into the editor is now pretty much instant. Auto-linking and member mentions to use new APIs for better reliability Quotes, code boxes, and spoilers can be dragged and moved and there is no more "red line" When cmd/ctrl right-clicking: options to remove or break-out of quotes, edit links and edit image properties Pasting asks if you want to convert to plain text Editor is responsive, and ability to have small editor show in areas with less space Member @mentions in posts can now be selected by tab key Design and interface enhancements Improve typography for titles Better contrast for user-entered text (posts/comments/etc) Brighten background colors Pre-select text in when share popup is opened Make positive/negative colors consistent across all uses Better hover highlighting of 'blended' links Better styling of mentions in posts (both the username, and the menu to select a user) Better contrast for certain areas Flatten the default photo image Improve popular/selected post styles Change popular post icon to heart for consistency with likes Make date a permalink for sharing Improve sidebar contrast and block styles Improve attachments dialog Add X to close mobile nav menu Select messages for multiple deleting in messenger Make leaving a conversation clearer Improved warning panel in user profiles Move content status icons (pinned, hidden etc.) to start of row Improve cover photo so it automatically puts it into position mode after uploading Android title bar inherits theme header color Added date uploaded to Downloads version dropdown Browser notifications for completed actions (such as large file uploads) Search The main search box defaults to the app you are currently browsing unless you are on home page where it searches all New default interface Results now highlight and skip to search term in preview Retina emoticons for Ipad/iPhone etc (where available) Instant Notifications Receive notifications via your Browser Notifications of new Personal Messages and anything in the notifications menu Intelligent auto-polling that only polls when needed to reduce server traffic Browser local storage used, to allow for cross-communication if you have multiple tabs open to further reduce resource use
  6. The Old Man

    A guide to Profile Cover Photos

    One of the great new features with our software is the ability to customise your profile with a cover photo. Cover photos can also be used to great effect in the Calendar when you create or edit an event, and in the Blog section where you can theme your Blog much more easily than before. I've increased the maximum file size of the profile cover images as of today, from 1MB to 2MB to make it easier to find and upload your favourite images. You can really add something to your profile by using a cover photo, it may be a favourite scene from Millennium or another TV series or film, perhaps something personal to you with a meaning that enhances your profile and allows other members to get a better impression of you, or part of a cool wallpaper or other image, your home, town or pets. Some images look better than others, generally wider rather than taller images work best as you get a letter box view of the image. Cover photos/images have replaced the old customisation options in your profile, so your customisations don't break the layout or theme of the site. They're also a lot cooler and fun to upload, especially if you are using a mobile device such as an iPad, because it will let you smoothly slide the image around to where you want it just using your finger (well it turns me on anyway!). This blog entry will cover member profile cover images, but the principle is the same when adding a cover image to a Calendar event or your Blog. Adding a Profile Cover Image Simply go to your profile, you can do this by clicking on your photo/avatar anywhere on the site or from your User Menu (normally top right). If you haven't uploaded a cover image yet, you will just see a blank space where it would normally appear. Look for the Cover Photo options to the right of this space. To upload your new cover photo or image, click on Upload Photo. The uploader appears and you can choose to browse and upload a suitable image or perhaps a wallpaper background image, or you can drag and drop an image however you prefer. Once uploaded the image may show as you would like. You can reposition the image/photo by choosing the Reposition Photo option, which lets you move the image to where you think it looks best. This repositioning step will appear automatically after we upgrade to v4.1 of the site, as its often needed. Once you are happy with your cover image or photo, it will be now displayed whenever you or a member views your profile. You can use the relevant options to overwrite or completely remove your image at any time. Our new software is now fully responsive by design, which means the website and your image will automatically look and work really well on all devices includes mobile/cell phones and tablets, as well as computers without needing a separate skin or theme for mobile devices that have smaller displays and therefore need smaller images. (Member profiles will improve again with the next update to 4.1, so any gallery albums will be displayed better in your profile.) We hope you found this tutorial/guide useful. This is who we are.

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