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IPBoard 4.0 Theme, Data Integration, and Image suggestions

Josh Bond

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I read through all the blogs on 4.0. I am excited, as this seems like complete rewrite.

Nothing I say here is a complaint about 3.x. It's just, you're at a crossroads and now would be a great time to embrace the latest trends in web design and provide more data integration.

1) I hope you will go with a clean, modern, minimal sort of theme. This is the trend of the past year for both web design and apps. Themeforest has some great looking, clean, minimal themes where the content is valued over a heavy design.

The last skin update in 3.x was a good step in this direction! But keep going...Especially the header area of IPBoard--looks a little dated.

Think about bigger boxes, bigger buttons, and bigger elements--or give an option for such.

2) I hope the framework will be responsive (automatic resizing of elements and graphics). AND make the website more image driven WHEN images represent content.

For example, when searching the downloads, why not show a thumbnail of the download like you do in the Category View?

Think Flickr. Think pinterest. Think images that represent content...or at least including images more in IP.Content feeds.

3) I'm tired of butchering templates to add sidebars, or what could be accomplished with "Wordpress style shortcodes" or to add twitter/facebook links. :smile:

Forums and Downloads: be able to add sidebars or control sidebars easier. (Note my "Similar Topics" and FAQ in the sidebars at the forum post view. Would be nice to do this without butchering templates...)

IPContent: Be able to have some IP.Content pages with a 3 column layout and others with a 2 column layout. Easily. Like you can with a wordpress theme...

4) IP.Downloads / IP.Content integration: I would like to see more/easier inclusion of Download data and images with IP.Content. And more integration of Download tags data.


a) Look at the front page of my website to see how I integrate Downloads data on to my IP.Content front page. Note the file images, the message poster images, the "What Others Are Downloading" feed and jquery updates, the integration of tags on the front page, etc. Note the homemade image slider as a ip.content block...

b)You can look at my Downloads Portal page to see the changes I have made (Left column: the Bookshelf "tag browser", the breaking of categories into separate sections, etc. Right column: showing the total downloads instead of uploader, etc)

c) Note my file listing page. I have to manually change the templates to re-position the Custom Fields so they appear first (be nice to see that as an option). I custom coded a "Other Modules By Same Author" block. Various integration modifications like this...

Think more data integration...and more images WHEN they represent content. :smile: And keep making IPBoard--there is nothing else close for me that would let me do what we do!

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One other idea: Creative Spam Control. Spam is useless for the spammer if it does not have a link.

Right now, I use a hook that requires that you have X number of posts before you can make a post with a link. That solved a spam problem that neither IPBoard's spam control or StopForumSpam could stop. (Together, they stop about 600 spam signups per day, but several per day were leaking through).

You could give the admin a lot of parameters like this. Require being a member for X days before allowing a post with a link. Require making a download before being allowed to post a link. Require email validation before making a post with a link. The idea for creative spam control is: let the admin set some arbitrary goal for allowing a post with a link. If you wanted to really give the admin power, you could let the admin "build" a set of rules from a variety of options.

I mention this because...the guy who makes the hook I rely heavily on to stop spam told me he will no longer make hooks for IPBoard. :sad: Sure would be nice to have creative spam control options after 4.0.

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