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IP.Gallery 4.0 - Manifesto

Six years ago, before Twitter existed and before Facebook became popular we launched "Invision Gallery". It was a simpler time. Not everyone 'surfed' the web with javascript enabled and in general interfaces were fairly basic. The Gallery mimicked a forum structure. It had categories which the administrator set up and allowed members to upload images. Other members could comment on those images and it worked great.

A little further down the road we added albums so members could create their own albums. These went inside a special category called "Members". This worked great.

A few years back when we upgraded Gallery to be IP.Board 3 compatible we added a newer front-end that did away with the normal category view and added the "boxes" that we're used to seeing now. This was great.

Although Gallery was starting to show its age. The web has moved on. Interfaces are more fluid and dynamic. People don't want to click through a dozen links to upload a picture. The additional functionality added over the years started to cripple the interface so that many found it confusing. Even setting up the basic permissions and categories caused a few to reach for technical support in frustration.

Clearly it's time to take Gallery apart and start again.

The "truth" of the application is very simple:

Upload some media into an album
View, discuss and share that media.

Our aim is to streamline those processes so that they are intuitive and modern. We're not content with basic static pages anymore. We want to interact with the site like we would a desktop application and the new Gallery delivers that experience.

IP.Gallery 4.0 is a huge upgrade; the single biggest upgrade it has ever seen. We're blasting out the cobwebs and introducing a slick new interface that never loses sight of what a Gallery should be. We're simplifying permissions and accessibility to remove the clutter and confusion. We want you to fall in love with Gallery again.

Over the coming weeks I'll be discussing the new functionality in more depth, but until then, I'll leave you with a few teaser images:

For this one blog entry, I'm going to close comments and ask that you post your feedback in the Gallery forum.

We'd love to hear what you think.

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