In my opinion, SMF should just support MySQL, or have the option to select their database type on the installation.
I have a concern over dropping everything except MySQL support. Oracle is pushing MySQL towards an "open core" model where only the very core of MySQL is open source. Everything else is closed-source and possibly heavily licensed and expensive if it's not for personal use (e.g. hosting companies would need to pay).
I'm not against using commercial software. Rather, I'm concerned about locking up a product which has had significant effort expended to support multiple backends when the one "chosen" backend is being produced by a company that has a direct interest in monetizing that backend and making sure it never eats into the company's main product.
Personally, I think more effort should be made to either extend the multi-database support into a proper db abstraction layer, or even an ORM. That, or finding a lightweight, license-compatible multi-database ORM that can be used.
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.
Agreed, especially given the declining relevance of that version on public sites. However, it would be useful to somehow get statistics on the browser makeup for SMF users to make sure it's fully a wise choice.
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.
Supported as long as an eye is given to proper degradation. No breaking functionality to where stuff doesn't run simply because JS isn't being processed by the browser.
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.
SMF uses PHP's built-in aspell support via the pspell module, so it's not third-party. However, pspell has been deprecated in favor of enchant. PHP 5.3 doesn't support pspell at all. Effort should be made to either move to enchant or drop server-side spell checking.
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.
Agreed. The calendar has long been neglected and it's tangental to the purpose of a discussion forum. An officially supported modification would be the best way to go along with enhancing the calendar to make it more useful. Please do note my comments above about not breaking if JS isn't being run.
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.
I think that was done for data protection so that if a variable gets data that doesn't match the assigned type, it wouldn't be used. Can this be done automatically? My understanding is that it couldn't be easily done.
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".
Agreed. At least two of those messanger services are barely used today. Moving to custom profile fields would be a great way to avoid having to pick services, especially when ones like QQ are popular regionally (and useful for forums serving people in that region) but not globally.
The buddy list is very limiting, and practically useless. This should be moved to an actual database table, and the features expanded.
What kind of features are you thinking?
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.
I guess. I never use those features on other boards, but I am sure some people spend 60%+ of their time in those areas.
Recaptcha to replace SMF's default captcha?
Third-party external service that requires WAN connection. Probably won't happen. It's also widely targeted by various spambots, so just changing around the custom functionality would probably be more effective. (I say this, being the maintainer of the reCAPTCHA modification.)
Note that several human-backed services such as CAP****bot (censored as I'm not giving them free publicity) are widely used by spamming tools. These services use real humans to solve image puzzles, nullifying the purpose of having them on your site in the first place.
Oh, if you try to look up the solving service I mentioned, do be careful. It's run out of Eastern Europe by the same type of people that do scareware and drive-by infections. The site has the potential to be dangerous.
Personal Messages should definitely have the ability to include attachments.
There was some concern over this when it was suggested before. Not only do you now have a potential problem of attachments taking up space on your site, you have some potential legal issues as well. For instance, you may get two people trading child pornography via PM (rare, but it sadly does happen). Now your website is hosting illegal material. You also may get some adult sending a child nude photos (sadly, probably less rare than the first scenario), creating more issues. Then you also have the problems of someone sending malicious files and trying to get users to run these files - kinda like what happens in e-mail now.
Without a way to monitor these files, you're opening yourself up to some big problems with this feature. Since these are ostensibly personal, monitoring these things isn't really a solution.
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?)
There should always be a post page if only for those users running in constrained environments (mobile, for example) where heavy JS would not work well. Likewise, the ability to hide all the editor "chrome" is useful for reducing data transfer size and just removing clutter when the user knows how to type bbc.
Provide a more intuitive Newsletter system, with a more advanced news system being an official addon/modification.
Agreed, kinda. It would be nice to have a newsletter archive without needing to manually make one. Also, some thought should be given into what to do with the news system.
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)
Just using JS to add a line of text?
Provide a simple but customizable interface to modify email templates? Probably better kept out of core, and added as an official modification.
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.
I see a lot of ways of going around this. There are tons of URL shorteners that can obfuscate an address. Having an external modification that can treat external links specially might be interesting.