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[3.0] My Thoughts on Features for SMF 2.1

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Labradoodle-360:
Hey everyone!

I've put quite a bit of thought into what I think SMF 2.1 should have, should not have, and what should be modified, so I thought I might as well share these thoughts with the public.

Database Support:
In my opinion, SMF should just support MySQL, or have the option to select their database type on the installation.

Browser Support:
All old browser support should be dropped, such as IE6. There are quite a few limitations supporting old browsers cause, and there has to be some point where developers can develop Web 2.0 code without worrying about old browser compatibility and having to code a lot of extra lines to keep it compatible with ancient browsers.

CSS3 & jQuery Implementation:
jQuery is most definitely in the future of the web, it is highly extensible and at the same time lightweight. If for no other reason, it should be included on a boolean variable for mod authors to enable if their mod uses it.

In my opinion, the default theme should also contain some nice attributes that CSS3 has to offer.

Spellcheck:
Most modern browsers contain some form of spell-check built in, or an addon for it. SMF's also requires a third party script to run. So in my opinion, it's not even practical.

Although I do believe it could be updated, and provided as an official addon/modification.

Calendar:
I believe the Calendar should not be a core-feature. I think it should be removed from the SMF Core, and completely re-written to have an AJAX/jQuery fancy interface, provided as an official addon/modification.

$smcFunc & PDO:
$smcFunc should be re-written as a PHP Object for easier usage, and a much shorter line-count to accomplish a much better result. Plus some more automation such as auto-data type with the ability to over-ride? For instance, with $smcFunc in 2.0, you have to declare each columns data type, such as 'field' => 'int', and so forth, but this can be figured out with PHP very easily, with no need to declare each column.

Along with the PHP Object, PDO should be implemented for data sanitation.


File Based - Database Modifying - Menu:
There were huge benefits with the move of the menu from template files in 1.1, to Source side in 2.0, however this still could be much  more customizable for forum admins who do not know any coding, and even for those who do, much more simple and quick.

The solution is a file-based, and database driven modifying for the menu, with a very customizable and easy to use interface in the admin panel. (Menu Editor Lite + some features of full)

BBC Editor??
It wouldn't be bad to consider the same idea of "Menu Editor" for Bulletin board code, such as the ability to remove bbc items, or add custom ones, permission to use one, and so forth, through an easy interface, outputted to a file so there wouldn't be any extra queries on a regular page load.

Bloated Profile Fields:
I believe bloated profile fields as "MSN" - "ICQ" - "AIM" - "YIM" should be removed. With the addition of Custom Profile Fields in SMF 2.0, why provide some fields, but by no means them all? What about Skype, Google Talk, Facebook? I think it's much better to remove all un-necessary fields but allow them to be added easily through Custom Profile Fields. You could even have "Custom Profile Field Templates".

Customizable Memberlist:
The memberlist should be configurable through the admin panel, with different two different listing styles. Block / List.

Buddy List:
The buddy list is very limiting, and practically useless. This should be moved to an actual database table, and the features expanded.

Profiles:
The profile sections of SMF are lacking, and very behind today's technology and social aspects. Inline editing, more social such as visitor messages / comments / notifications / etc.

Captcha:
Recaptcha to replace SMF's default captcha?

PM Attachments:
Personal Messages should definitely have the ability to include attachments.

Quick Reply vs. Posting Page:
The possibility of completely removing the actual "post" page and making something similar to Quick Reply be the main form of posting, with BBC editor obviously, and attachments. (Attachments powered by AJAX?)

News / Newsletter:
Provide a more intuitive Newsletter system, with a more advanced news system being an official addon/modification.

Smartphones:
Who doesn't have a smartphone today? Provide jQuery Mobile for smartphones. "Posted from iPhone" or "Posted from Android" (very simple to addon, but a neat idea imo)

Email Template Editor:
Provide a simple but customizable interface to modify email templates? Probably better kept out of core, and added as an official modification.

External Links / Blacklist:
The ability to "blacklist" an address, when the link is clicked, warn the user that the link is blacklisted, ability to proceed or stop. Let users know that they are clicking a link that is external. Enable or disable...possibly a modification rather than core.

Users Online Today:
This should definitely be a core feature by now.

.gif's:
Remove all of the old .gif's that are old fashioned looking, and replace with a nice new icon pack.
I have more thoughts, but I think this enough for one post.

Definitely feel free to comment or question any of my ideas.

Old Fossil:
The Calendar may not be everyones cup of tea ( or coffee)

BUT on MKAware our Calendar is full of local events although I would prefer to see more member birthdays too.

Labradoodle-360:
1) That's why it would be a new fully re-written Calendar, with much more functionality, and with jQuery so it'd be much more fancy and up to date. (most useful as a modification imo)
2) You can still show birthdays without the calendar...not that hard to make possible.

live627:

--- Quote ---In my opinion, SMF should just support MySQL, or have the option to select their database type on the installation.
--- End quote ---
+1... possibly make the alternative database files as official plugins.


--- Quote ---All old browser support should be dropped, such as IE6
--- End quote ---
+1


--- Quote ---jQuery is most definitely in the future of the web, it is highly extensible and at the same time lightweight. If for no other reason, it should be included on a boolean variable for mod authors to enable if their mod uses it.

--- End quote ---
I wouldn't agree on the lightweight part, unless you had 1.3 in mind.

If jQuery does end up being included, why not also rewrite most if not all the existing javascript to use jquery and the $ function?


--- Quote ---In my opinion, the default theme should also contain some nice attributes that CSS3 has to offer.
--- End quote ---
YES +100 DEFINITELY!! Just think of everything that could be replaced: rooundeed corners, gradients, zebra-striping.


--- Quote ---I believe the Calendar should not be a core-feature. I think it should be removed from the SMF Core, and completely re-written to have an AJAX/jQuery fancy interface, provided as an official addon/modification
--- End quote ---
.-1. It can and should be improved. Maybe then it'll get what it deserves...


--- Quote ---I believe bloated profile fields as "MSN" - "ICQ" - "AIM" - "YIM" should be removed. With the addition of Custom Profile Fields in SMF 2.0, why provide some fields, but by no means them all? What about Skype, Google Talk, Facebook? I think it's much better to remove all un-necessary fields but allow them to be added easily through Custom Profile Fields. You could even have "Custom Profile Field Templates".
--- End quote ---
+10


--- Quote ---The memberlist should be configurable through the admin panel, with different two different listing styles. Block / List
--- End quote ---
+1... also custom profile fields should have the option to be shown on the memberlist. See Sinan's mod.


--- Quote ---The buddy list is very limiting, and practically useless. This should be moved to an actual database table, and the features expanded.
--- End quote ---
+1... see the enhancement to buddies in the ultimate profile mod.


--- Quote ---The profile sections of SMF are lacking, and very behind today's technology and social aspects. Inline editing, more social such as visitor messages / comments / notifications / etc.

--- End quote ---
+10... see above
 mod.


--- Quote ---Recaptcha to replace SMF's default captcha?
--- End quote ---
I feel this one to be shot down if only because it relies on a third party service if I recall correctly. Why not include Bad Behavior and decrease the default captcha to easy and remove complicated levels starting from high? Maybe then less people would complain about the "horrible captcha". Signed, a user who has a hard time solving these puzzles.


--- Quote ---Personal Messages should definitely have the ability to include attachments.
--- End quote ---
+10

Labradoodle-360:

--- Quote ---If jQuery does end up being included, why not also rewrite most if not all the existing javascript to use jquery and the $ function?
--- End quote ---
+1 exactly...


--- Quote ---YES +100 DEFINITELY!! Just think of everything that could be replaced: rooundeed corners, gradients, zebra-striping.
--- End quote ---
Amen.

Oh, also get rid of the old fashion .gif's and replace with some nice new icons?


--- Quote ---.-1. It can and should be improved. Maybe then it'll get what it deserves...
--- End quote ---
Sure, either way though, it needs a full re-write with jQuery, new features. Whether or not it's a modification or core doesn't really matter, but it definitely needs an update.


--- Quote ---I feel this one to be shot down if only because it relies on a third party service if I recall correctly. Why not include Bad Behavior and decrease the default captcha to easy and remove complicated levels starting from high? Maybe then less people would complain about the "horrible captcha". Signed, a user who has a hard time solving these puzzles.
--- End quote ---
Well, the spellcheck requires a third party...maybe just officially support this addon.

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