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Kier's new forum script: Xenforo

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Concentrating just on "forum" software isn't going to get them anywhere. Thinking they have 1 or 2 years to catch up doesn't cut it in this market. Unless the software contains those features that existing packages have, people aren't going to give it a second thought. I'm not going to purchase something in the hopes that there's a modification for it somewhere down the road. If it doesn't provide the features I can get elsewhere, I'm not going to touch it. And as I stated earlier, being "different" isn't going to cut it. It has to blow the competition out of the water. And to date, it doesn't do that either.

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It's quite obvious that two people aren't able to offer a whole suite within a year. XenForo has a long way to go but some features or the way they implemented some things could be really inspiring for other companies in the same business. So I welcome xenForo and I am quite anxious how IPS will implement one or the other feature in the future. Also it's obvious that xenForo isn't really a competitor for IPS or even IB yet. As long as you don't need more than a forum, of course.

So Kev, I'm quite sure you were the first person on xenForo with those wishes and therefore they weren't sure how to handle such an unexpected request. Or you could have just used the search function and posted in the 1 * 100E other threads relating to the missing gallery, blog, CMS or whatever.

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So Kev, I'm quite sure you were the first person on xenForo with those wishes and therefore they weren't sure how to handle such an unexpected request.



Have you ever bought a car, truck or SUV? Did you tell the sales person - "this is what I need in a product"?

Did the sales person get mad? Or did they answer your questions to the best of their ability.



Or you could have just used the search function and posted in the 1 * 100E other threads relating to the missing gallery, blog, CMS or whatever.




I feel that my needs are specialized, so I wanted my own thread. My current forum has over 36,000 members and more then 1.8 million post.

Nor an I some kid that has to ask mommy and daddy for money to buy the software.

I'am a serious customer, with serious needs in a forum software, and I have real money. If that does not get the attention and respect of a sales person, nothing will.

Lets just say that I was not impressed with the way I was treated by the xenforo staff.

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Which brings me to a point. it was YEARS, YEARS after IP.Board's initial release before Matt and the team here at IPS even considered making Blog, Gallery, Downloads & a CMS add-on.


XF is just starting off. I'm sure in time they are going to release such add-ons. By you asking for them NOW don't expect them to drop what their doing and make a top-notch add-on just because you asked for it. They'll release such add-ons when the forum, the main core product, is mature & stable enough.

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Yes which puts xenforo years and years behind already - its going to be great watching all the people sign up with xenforo and then start complaining when its miles behind even vB in terms of add ons etc :)

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...


I'am a serious customer, with serious needs in a forum software, and I have real money.


...



To make it short.


I posted that I wanted a wiki, gallery, CMS, blogs,,,, and some other stuff. ...



No, you don't need a forum software. You need a bunch of features more and xF won't have them in the near future. xF is just a forum software.

Kier and Mike stated they wanted to make forum first, everything else is after the release of 1.0 and maybe years away. Don't know what they want to do next, not my problem. xF isn't really an option for someone who has the whole package of IPS or something similar like you and me. But it's not that Kier and Mike wouldn't know this and if they want to have market share they will have to expand their package. You can be sure they know about, but they want to do it this way and well, so be it.

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I'am asking a question here,,,,, people can not ask a question?



But anyway, I'am a member of zenforo - I started a thread asking the developers about certain features that I would like to see a forum software. Before it was over, the thread was locked and removed. One of the last replies I saw to the thread was someone calling me an idiot, and the thread was removed.



I posted that I wanted a wiki, gallery, CMS, blogs,,,, and some other stuff. I was using forums back in 1998 and 1999 that had the same basic features that vb 3X series has. Its like nothing has changed with forums in the past 10 years.



I dont know about you, but when I am looking at buying something, and the developers can not take serious questions without getting mad - that does not show a level of professionalism.




no wonder! you should've searched before posting something that's been discussed and answered like 98345743897 times now.

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no wonder! you should've searched before posting something that's been discussed and answered like 98345743897 times now.




So rather than closing and deleting his thread surely they could have pointed him in the right direction :)

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I might add, it's not as if they have an entire development team like IPS and VB do. you guys seem to forget it's just Kier and Mike developing the software. Now imagine 2 guys developing a forum, blog, gallery and CMS solution, THAT'S A TON OF WORK for just two people. It's a lot of work just having 2 people develop a forum solution let alone the forum + it's add-ons. I'm sure they plan on bringing in more developers after 1.0 is out the door for future versions and products. Just give it time.

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IPB hasn't turned into a social networking software, so there's hope.




Its not about social networking ... its about incorporating the best elements and practices into forums. :rolleyes:

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Concentrating just on "forum" software isn't going to get them anywhere. Thinking they have 1 or 2 years to catch up doesn't cut it in this market. Unless the software contains those features that existing packages have, people aren't going to give it a second thought. I'm not going to purchase something in the hopes that there's a modification for it somewhere down the road. If it doesn't provide the features I can get elsewhere, I'm not going to touch it. And as I stated earlier, being "different" isn't going to cut it. It has to blow the competition out of the water. And to date, it doesn't do that either.




Biker 1 or 2 years is eternity on the internet and it waits for no one.

We are no longer in the 1990s ... to succeed now ... you need an ARMY of developers fighting your battles for you. :rolleyes:

This FB app was launched yesterday ... Is any forum developer even thinking of inviting these developers and others to explore what can be done together ?

Rounds.com

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This FB app was launched yesterday ... Is any forum developer even thinking of inviting these developers and others to explore what can be done together ?



Why would they? A forum IS NOT Facebook and the applications for them generally do not work hand in hand. Just because you can make a 'good' facebook app, doesn't mean that you'd be able to adapt it into an application for a forum software package. It doesn't work like that - it's a totally different type of interaction.

It's just like me making iPhone applications that work with Facetime and the Push notifications, and then expecting me to be able to copy the project to an Android device and expecting it to work without issues. It's a totally different thing, intended for a totally different type of platform.

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Why would they? A forum IS NOT Facebook and the applications for them generally do not work hand in hand. Just because you can make a 'good' facebook app, doesn't mean that you'd be able to adapt it into an application for a forum software package. It doesn't work like that - it's a totally different type of interaction.



It's just like me making iPhone applications that work with Facetime and the Push notifications, and then expecting me to be able to copy the project to an Android device and expecting it to work without issues. It's a totally different thing, intended for a totally different type of platform.





Would you say that as they FB gets more interactive ... forums will keep their appeal ?

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FB has one advantage over forums. The individual making a comment doesn't have to worry about being taken to task for being wrong, or have to defend their position. This is why many have gone to FB over forums. They don't want to have to defend their position. They make their comment, and it's done.

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FB has one advantage over forums. The individual making a comment doesn't have to worry about being taken to task for being wrong, or have to defend their position. This is why many have gone to FB over forums. They don't want to have to defend their position. They make their comment, and it's done.





Also nobody on FB is concerned about getting silly infractions that some forum owners insist is for our own good. :rolleyes:

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Concentrating just on "forum" software isn't going to get them anywhere. Thinking they have 1 or 2 years to catch up doesn't cut it in this market. Unless the software contains those features that existing packages have, people aren't going to give it a second thought. I'm not going to purchase something in the hopes that there's a modification for it somewhere down the road. If it doesn't provide the features I can get elsewhere, I'm not going to touch it. And as I stated earlier, being "different" isn't going to cut it. It has to blow the competition out of the water. And to date, it doesn't do that either.



1. Looks like there's a strong group of modders from .org already posting there. I wouldn't think there will be a 1 or 2 year catch up time frame for anything. I would assume the mod community will be smaller than vb, but larger than IPB within the early months of gold release.

2. Being "different" won't cut it, I agree, but being easy to use, mod, style, and backed WILL cut it.

3. I am not sure an Alpha version of anything is going to blow any established software away anyway. Why not compare when it's gold?


Yes which puts xenforo years and years behind already - its going to be great watching all the people sign up with xenforo and then start complaining when its miles behind even vB in terms of add ons etc :)



I switched my VB board to IPB. IPB is miles behind VB in terms of add ons and community support. As far as the direction of future versions between VB and IPB, IPB was the smart choice because of core product, however it still lacks many basic things my members were used to. You get a company with great core software, great support from the company AND the community, plus a great modding community, then that's the software that will win the eventual fight for share.

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I switched my VB board to IPB. IPB is miles behind VB in terms of add ons and community support. As far as the direction of future versions between VB and IPB, IPB was the smart choice because of core product, however it still lacks many basic things my members were used to. You get a company with great core software, great support from the company AND the community, plus a great modding community, then that's the software that will win the eventual fight for share.




+1

You just articulated exactly what I've been thinking since I moved to IPB (was with VB in the past)

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I think it's important to note a very simple fact here that most of the users on our forums regularly overlook - the largest portion of our customer base (probably around the 80% mark if I had to make a wild guess) do not modify their forum at all. No modifications, period.

I think many of you base your total outlook purely on the modification community, and while I think the modification community is important (it's where I got my start after all), the reality is that the vast majority of our customers do not, despite the picture that posts on our company forums here may paint. When NASA or Yahoo or whoever decides to go buy a forum, for instance, they don't look through modification downloads to see what software has the most modifications. :)

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When NASA or Yahoo or whoever decides to go buy a forum, for instance, they don't look through modification downloads to see what software has the most modifications. :)




NASA would go with ipb because its out of this world!

/me goes back to his box now...

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I think it's important to note a very simple fact here that most of the users on our forums regularly overlook - the largest portion of our customer base (probably around the 80% mark if I had to make a wild guess) do not modify their forum at all. No modifications, period.



I would believe that to be true, I rarely add mods to my board, most of my customers don't mod their boards heavily either, the look and feel is however often more important to them than a lot of the technical aspects, hence why a lot of them haven't yet or are only just now upgrading from the 2.3 era.


vB had a lot of time to build up a lot of mods, whether they are useful or not is another matter.. having 10000000000 unsupported and old version mods to cover things that are now standard doesn't make it a more lively modding community.

Back in the days when we ran vB boards I can think of at least 7 mods we had to add for what are now just standard features of IPB.

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I *really* like this company and its products.


I think it's important to note a very simple fact here that most of the users on our forums regularly overlook - the largest portion of our customer base (probably around the 80% mark if I had to make a wild guess) do not modify their forum at all. No modifications, period.



I think many of you base your total outlook purely on the modification community


80% is a jaw dropping statistic. To me, the largest difference between vb & ips is not the software, it is the demographic of the users. There seem to be many more commercialized vb sites. Commercial means many things, one of them is time = $, another is certain functionality that needs to be in place for the individual forums, and no matter *how* the original configuration of the software works each site has their own needs.

I am not basing my outlook on the modification community, I am basing my outlook on spending several hundred hours trying to get the software to operate for our needs. I spent many weeks trying to get a custom ip.content quote answered, you and Charles were in the loop on that. Eventually I found 1 person who would do it for several hundred dollars for what I was told was a 3 hour job. If I needed more custom tech help and I was using ipb, then what? Leave my forum broken/less than functional while I spent more time? Then once my forum was working the way I wanted we would be several versions behind the current software.

The (sad) fact is my income is based on how well my users can use the forum, and enjoy it. I am 1000% convinced with the right technical knowledge within a day my forum could be using ipb, and all the forum ops addons I bought, and every one of my members would be happy. We don't need a lot, and we are extremely flexible, but we need some tech support outside the scope of the ips tech support.

and while I think the modification community is important (it's where I got my start after all), the reality is that the vast majority of our customers do not, despite the picture that posts on our company forums here may paint.



I loath vborg with a passion if that is what you are referring to. I've no idea which mods work or don't work and the popular mods have thousands of comments to read through to see which version applies, if the mod author is still around. There is no QA at all, ips is far superior in the specific aspect.

You have had a long long time to see people from vb trying to use your software, you could view that as an opportunity to get feedback, but I keep getting the impression the 'defense shields' go up instead. There is no emotion involved at my end, I simply want things working well enough so I can eat. Pretty simple agenda. Another approach you could take is to log/note what people type on this forum and see if there is a trend.


When NASA or Yahoo or whoever decides to go buy a forum, for instance, they don't look through modification downloads to see what software has the most modifications. :)



Those companies have tech support.


I *really* like this company and its products, but the tech person that currently runs my site is much more interested in xf from a technical perspective at the moment. tech help = functionality = $, it has nothing at all to do with the actual software being used from my perspective.

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I would believe that to be true, I rarely add mods to my board, most of my customers don't mod their boards heavily either, the look and feel is however often more important to them than a lot of the technical aspects, hence why a lot of them haven't yet or are only just now upgrading from the 2.3 era.




Yes, the look and feel is an entirely different ballpark. MOST of our customers want a unique look and feel that differs from the default theme. Many do indeed swap out the header and nothing else, but the majority of our customers end up using a custom skin, purchasing a unique custom skin, or contracting someone to make a theme based around their website design.





Mind you, 80% is not a true statistic. We don't monitor and talk with every single customer. This is a statistic I estimated based upon the sites we work with through the ticket system, see through normal internet usage, and do so on. I tend to agree the demographic may be slightly different, but after all - that's what competition is about. :)


I am not basing my outlook on the modification community, I am basing my outlook on spending several hundred hours trying to get the software to operate for our needs. I spent many weeks trying to get a custom ip.content quote answered, you and Charles were in the loop on that. Eventually I found 1 person who would do it for several hundred dollars for what I was told was a 3 hour job. If I needed more custom tech help and I was using ipb, then what? Leave my forum broken/less than functional while I spent more time? Then once my forum was working the way I wanted we would be several versions behind the current software.



The (sad) fact is my income is based on how well my users can use the forum, and enjoy it. I am 1000% convinced with the right technical knowledge within a day my forum could be using ipb, and all the forum ops addons I bought, and every one of my members would be happy. We don't need a lot, and we are extremely flexible, but we need some tech support outside the scope of the ips tech support.




You have had a long long time to see people from vb trying to use your software, you could view that as an opportunity to get feedback, but I keep getting the impression the 'defense shields' go up instead. There is no emotion involved at my end, I simply want things working well enough so I can eat. Pretty simple agenda. Another approach you could take is to log/note what people type on this forum and see if there is a trend.




I *really* like this company and its products, but the tech person that currently runs my site is much more interested in xf from a technical perspective at the moment. tech help = functionality = $, it has nothing at all to do with the actual software being used from my perspective.




(I cut out of some of your comments that I didn't feel warranted a reply really)

What you are saying is actually quite common. Many people look at the raw number of modifications and think "software x has more or less modifications than software y" but this is really a horrible way to shop around. Firstly, how many of those modifications are current, supported, work well enough to use, and add actual functionality you are after? How many of the modifications are out dated, no longer supported, or are plain pointless? How many modifications are actually available in other products out of the box? The raw numbers tell little. Perhaps IPB has less mods than software x because it has more built-in features?

Setting that aside, most of the time when I communicate with users I find that they actually don't need a "modification" at all - they need something entirely custom and unique for their site, which is what you indicated as well. I find that to be my experience too. Thus, I think it's important to see a flourishing community of developers who are able and willing to take on custom projects, more so than a raw number of modifications that seems high. I'm sure we could pad our numbers, submitting tons of useless things ("javascript clock plugin for sidebar", etc.) but at the end of the day if it doesn't benefit the users and deliver what they want, I would consider it pointless.

For your IP.Content job - I would generally quote a 3 hour job somewhere around $200-$300 most likely. It's just the nature of the business (there is a lot more that goes into it than the number of hours). Now, what is of importance, however, is (as you pointed out) how long is the work supported. Will it upgrade with the software, or will it need updates? Are those updates included, or is there a charge (and if there is a charge, what sort of rate would be charged)? You indicated that technical help is important - I think we're at a point where we have a very large user base, but those with the technical skills to assist others are getting outweighed heavily by those who do *not* have such technical skills. As a result, there are more questions coming in than answers being provided, and really this is difficult to address. We can't staff for assistance outside the scope of our support, and we can't force users to come here and answer random questions other users have. What would you see as a solution to this? Obviously the best solution is if more of the community chipped in with their experience and knowledge where possible, but understanding that there is little we can do about that, do you have any other ideas? :)

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