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IP.Board 3.2.0: Notifications, Part 2

We recently blogged about the notification interface enhancements. I'd like to take a moment to go through some further enhancements we've made in this area.

We want the notification system to be something you and your members use regularly to keep updated on new events and new content. We've really re-designed the alert system from scratch to make it simpler to use and indeed more useful.

First up, lets take a look at a little interface update from the last blog entry:

You'll note right away that we're using icons instead of text links and that the 'tab' of the menu is correctly colored to give a full application feel to this system. We've also added a link to the notification 'options' so you can fine-tune your preferences quickly. The more eagle eyed among you will notice a few entries for "New topics" and "new replies" but we'll get to that shortly.

Here's what the notification system looks like with new alerts ready to view.

We've spent some time looking at the various uses of the system and made some improvements to the preferences form:

We've moved 'notification list' as the first column. This is the first stop for many people as they may only want to have a 'red alert' box show when something happens. We've removed the option to send a notification via personal message. We found that virtually no one uses this option and it creates a chain-effect when you have certain notification combinations. Now that the notification 'red alert' box works correctly by only showing an un-acknowledged count which disappears when you click to view the drop down, we felt that having a separate personal message alert just duplicated this.

We've also moved the "show an inline pop-up" option directly inside the "Private Messages" section. Now, you will only get an inline pop-up for a personal message and not for other alerts. This was a very popular request! Also, when you receive a new personal message, you no longer get a notification about this. The new inbox alert system works exactly like the notification alert system in that the list retains the most recent items but the 'red alert' box disappears when you click the list.

Now that we've moved the 'watched topics and watched forums' over to the 'follow' system, we can tie this neatly in with the notifications system. You can elect to receive an alert when someone replies to a topic you're following just as long as you've selected an 'immediate' notification. This will be great when you want to continue browsing the board but need immediate notification when someone replies to a topic or starts a new topic.

I hope you enjoy these further updates to the system and find it a very useful way to be kept up to date with new events!

Feel free to comment on this blog entry below or, if you have feedback unrelated to this blog entry, start a new topic in our feedback forum. Be sure to check the What's New in IP.Board 3.2 topic for a running list of announced changes!

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