Dev Diary, February 21, 2014

Ah, the last breathes of winter… It’s getting warmer, so the life’s good, and that’s exactly the attitude that boosts our strive to get a few more ideas through to the next release. One such idea is the improvement of the Photos plugin – a real essential toy in the arsenal of any serious social site. Our goal here is to fix all the obvious bugs and add some exciting options to make users happier.

As you know, at present the plugin operates by means of either basic uploader, or through flash upload. And frankly, both are dated. The flash one cannot be customized in css/html, and requires an additional plugin in the browser. Sometimes this leads to unnecessary confusion, and that’s what we want to eliminate.

The solution – a photo uploader that uses native browser capabilities and doesn’t require additional browser extensions. Also, it’s easily customizable in css/html, maintains drag’n’drop interface, and allows quick editing at the very first step (rotate, hashtags, album name, etc.)

Photo1

 VIEW PHOTOS

One of the things we learned with the old system is that most users find comments under pictures inconvenient. When the page is scrolled down for more comments, the picture itself gets out of sight, and is basically “lost.”

An easy solution to prevent this is to move comments and description to the right side of the picture. That’s the trend across the industry anyway, and seems to be the right approach for us. Still, we are leaving the old system as an available option as well, so you can choose what’s working better for you.

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 PHOTO LIST

We’ve also decided to play with the visual presentation of the photo list, which was kind of boring (being strictly square and all). The addition of a Pinterest-like mode should spice things up a bit, don’t you think?

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SEARCH PHOTOS

There are no search options for photos in Oxwall right now, which isn’t handy, since users resort to tags when they are looking for something. We’ll change that by making it possible to search by descriptions, usernames and hash tags.

Capture4

So that’s the gist of things to come. But there’s even more interface stuff that we are tinkering with right now. Liking and varying privacy settings for different photo albums are on the plate too, and will be ready to be served with Oxwall 1.6.1, or soon thereafter.

Keep reading our Dev Diary guys, and learn what else keeps us busy.

10 thoughts on “Dev Diary, February 21, 2014

  1. We have most of these features right now via plug ins, but it will be nice to see them all wrapped up in one integrated package.
    One thing I would love to see added is View Counts. A lot of our users like to see how many times their content is viewed. I don’t think it would be too difficult to add this.

  2. Good news for the photo plugin ! Would like to read the same for the video plugin ;)
    And for both of them, the ability to take a picture/video with a smartphone would be great ! Anyway, good news for all the oxwall users !

  3. Good news, the Photos plugin could definitely need some attention. I hope you remember that privacy options for photos also only really make sense if they are stored differently on the server (i.e., not just consequentially numbered filenames).

  4. would be nice to get more detail customization for the forum plugin. the photo update is nice but the forum lacks the detail functions and customization of the page. too bad you don’t have image uploads to the forum post link up with the users own photo albums.

    • Forum plugin will also get to its renewal, of course. We are working at one thing (actually at a bunch of things) at a time.

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