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Everything posted by Lindy

  1. Brent, We appreciate the feedback! I certainly understand there are still some niche sites - notably certain techy/dev sites that still rely on to BBCode both because they find it easier and it’s what they know. The (comparatively) few still using it are very passionate about using it and we can definitely appreciate that. At the same time, the BB in BBCode stands for Bulletin Board. It was created long before WYSIWYGs in the 90’s by UBB. The web has since long evolved and with the advance of proper WYSIWYG technology, so BBCode is really rare to encounter. Be it Google Docs, email or virtually any modern editor, we all use buttons or shortcut keys like command-B as second nature, which works even with markdown. The real issue is the fact that it’s simply not native to any modern editor (that I am aware of) - including the one we integrate with, CKEditor. We have a backend “parser” that converts your BBC tags to HTML upon submission, but there is no way to convert that back for editing or any other purpose. To maintain overall stability as well as compatibility with editor updates, our only intention with Invision Community 4 was to ensure some degree of backwards compatibility for those who still use tags when submitting content. The software in fact does that and while BBCode will be deprecated (which simply means it will not be further developed) in a future release, we have no immediate plans to remove it entirely. While there are still traditional software packages that have legacy BBCode support, you will find that most modern community platforms have no native (built-in) support for BBCode and I think it’s extremely unlikely we will ever see it make a comeback (although I said the same thing about bellbottoms.) We are always open to ways to improve your experience with the editor and if you’re struggling to get things formatted properly using native functionality, we would welcome you to open a support ticket so we can see what you’re trying to achieve and try to offer some help. Thanks again for taking the time to share your concerns!
  2. Just to be clear - when we say a third party resource is causing an issue, we do not necessarily mean the application or plugin itself is the root cause. We try to trace it to a specific third party resource for you, but once we identify that the issue is resolved by removing or disabling a third party resource, I'm afraid that's where our involvement ends. The actual underlying issue could be the resource itself, adverse effects from the interaction with other third party resources (this is common for folks that install half of the marketplace), an environment interaction with the resource or a number of things. Unfortunately, it is not within the scope of IPS support to determine which case may apply, so we will simply advise you to reach out to the author or remove the resource.
  3. Account deactivation will be coming very shortly, but this is not to be confused with account deletion. There are no immediate plans for an automated deletion system for various reasons outlined in other topics. It's worth noting that the GDPR provides for lawful bases of collection and processing of information. If money has been exchanged, for example, they cannot demand you delete their account and existence provided you have a purpose for retaining it and in the US, we are obligated to maintain financial and legal records. You must, however, outline a retention policy (ours will be forthcoming.) In terms of content, unless a post or other content item contains personally identifiable information such as a physical address, you do NOT have to delete a member's content - it belongs to the community, not the member (and that should be clear in your policy.) So, the impending account deactivation will disable the profile and effectively archive the account. There will be no way to contact the member, even with an admin override (and no such modifications will be allowed in the marketplace) through the software and they will receive no further communication from the site. This will satisfy requests in which the user wants to leave but cannot be forgotten. Right to erasure requests for which there's no legal basis for processing (communities where there's no contractual premise) an do require deletion would still need to be processed manually by the admin. Again, there's too much to consider there - hacked accounts, validation, purchase records, etc. for us to comfortably automate without a fairly significant amount of development time, testing and resources and our efforts are better focused on keeping people on your community, not spending weeks developing functionality to allow them to delete themselves with the click of a button. We'll have more info on GDPR as it relates to IPS and account deactivation soon. Thanks for your patience.
  4. If you have enough data to make Elasticsearch worthwhile, it stands to reason you can fix whatever the issue is with ES in the amount of time it's going to take to rebuild the search index locally. Either way, your users aren't going to have accurate activity streams immediately. I'd focus the effort on restoring service to your elasticsearch instance.
  5. So many misconceptions. If @daveoh were to share his site, you would see it's very clean, well organized, has high quality content and a glance shows his backlink profile is strong. He also has little to no apparent ads. @Nesa while I understand your concerns and understand your frustration, the sitemap itself is not the cause of your issues. This was posted earlier today and was already indexed by Google hours ago. I've checked some of our larger enterprise sites and their content from today is also being indexed in a timely fashion. I just searched the topic you referenced and it too is listed. There's no magic bullet in 4.3 or even other software that's going to put you on the front page of Google or instantaneously push new content directly to Google. The big algorithm update of 2017 targeted a lot of sites with some losing as much as 90% of their traffic. Some of these sites flew under the radar with what Google considers low quality content and in Google's eyes, they were righting the scale. There are many factors that influence your position in Google, your index rate and frankly, whether or not Google just likes or hates you. Ads If your site has ads that detract from the user experience and content on your site, Google WILL penalize you and that was the single most biggest hit in the "Fred" update. An ad in the header and footer are ok. An affiliate link or "sponsored content" that is appropriately placed and blends with content is ok. Ads all over the page and in the sidebar are obnoxious to users and Google agrees and doesn't want to subject us to it (for which I'm, as a user, appreciative.) Backlinks Backlinks can account for up to 1/3 of your overall standing with Google -- that is, quality backlinks; not "hey, link to me and I'll link you back." Content Freshness/Quality You may very well have 15 million posts, but if they're all from 2003 and you get very little new content, your old content is going to have less value to Google and they may drop it. Keep it fresh, keep users engaged. Google has gotten very intelligent and can distinguish rehashing the same musings over fresh information. General discussion sites with loose/generic content won't likely fare as well as those with unique, relevant content. Pages with thin content (such as picture threads, a bunch of "lols", etc.) are likely to get hit by Google. Again, Google cleaned house in 2017 - many sites got hit, including those using Wordpress, vB, etc. There's just too many variables to get all up in arms over one component: a sitemap. A sitemap, even the complete absence of a sitemap is not going to cause your indexed pages to drop. If this has happened to you, it's because Google penalized you and dropped your content. A sitemap is also not a magic wand and Google will not consider it the be-all for indexed content. A sitemap is a good gap filler and provides Google additional insight, but most content is still indexed organically through links. 4.3 will provide for the mentioned improvements to the sitemap. Given 4.3 is so close, I'm sorry, but it would not be worth re-engineering those improvements for 4.2 and again, it's not going to be the magic solution you believe it to be. Unfortunately, I can only suggest focusing on the above list as one or more of those items is the likely culprit for your site being dropped.
  6. As noted in your ticket: I can appreciate you've done some research on this, but you are referencing deprecated extensions in MySQL. Invision Community utilizes mysqli and the process (ssl_set()) is different than simply appending a flag. In addition to changes to the database handler, you would need to generate a certificate, bind that certificate to your installation, etc. It's certainly not as simple as setting a flag and while Azure may provide a mechanism to somewhat simplify this by generating a certificate (though it doesn't work with mysqli without additional setup), it's unfortunately not something we presently support on an application level or have roadmapped to support in a self-hosted capacity. The proper method, with SSL DB or not, is to secure transmission between your web nodes and the database on a network level. There should never be an opportunity to "sniff" a connection from other nodes on a network to database, because only your web nodes should be able to access the DB. A virtual network, vlan, virtual private cloud and appropriate security rules should be utilized so that only web nodes are able to communicate with your database. In the case of off-premise access to the database, network rules to only allow specific IPs should be created and enforced. I apologize for any frustration and inconvenience. This is rather environment specific and not generally an out-of-the-box offering. I'm sorry I couldn't be of more assistance, but we appreciate the feedback.
  7. You can change those by saving a new stream, OR, by logging into your AdminCP, clicking System -> Content Discovery - Streams -> Unread Content, making your changes and clicking save which will save for all users. It's ok to be taken back by a new way of doing things, but before declaring something a "usability fail" - it might be helpful to take some time and become familiar with it. The default settings are based on various feedback. You can change them as outlined above. "Stream-based" content discovery is how virtually every service on the web operates now. Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, etc. It's what people who haven't been around forums for 15 years know, expect and understand. Naturally, it will be a transition if you've lived in VNC for the past decade or more, but most who have given it a chance come to prefer it over the old VNC.
  8. This is being discussed with development, I just wanted to let you know we're not ignoring it. One proposed solution moving forward is to incorporate our own event trigger system - for example, when a reaction is provided, send a "reactionGiven" event that you can then work with. This allows you extendability without us needing to get hacky. Once the core devs have given more insight, I'll update this so we're all on the same page.
  9. There's already a merge topic function under Moderation Actions, assuming I'm understanding you correctly. If you literally mean only the first post in a topic, what are you trying to accomplish and what would happen to the rest of the posts in the source topic?
  10. No. There are still engineering challenges to overcome. Sphinx (or similar) would, however, improve the resource overhead and lead to better results. We are doing, as I mentioned, external search, but it will most likely be Elasticsearch - not Sphinx.
  11. Some of this is actually quite a large engineering task. Improved app searching through Commerce, Pages, etc. is definitely something that will be addressed and I know at a user-level, this seems like a no-brainer, but to allow IPS4 to do things like the activity stream and advanced search across all apps simultaneously, it utilizes a search index... this means data is aggregated into a single table for efficient-esque access. It's not efficient, in its current architecture, to dump everything in Pages, custom Downloads fields, etc. within it as well. So, there are a couple of ideas being discussed internally that need to be vetted, POC'd and benchmarked before being considered further. It will happen in due course. Our focus right now is on engagement -- things like reputation, keeping people active, etc. We'll likely be getting into enhanced search (yes, including external search engine support) by summer.
  12. We are going to add additional storage options as S3 can be mind blowing for some, but have not landed on any specifically. We're certainly open to suggestions and will consider Google.
  13. Search is pretty complex in IPS4 and to be honest, lack of Commerce search was a mere oversight. Unfortunately, it's not something that can just be easily plopped in, but it is something, along with pages in Pages that we have slated to be added in a search overhaul.
  14. I can nearly guarantee a plugin that simply selects from the user table to determine who has been active in the past X hours to manipulate the list is going to be more reliable than hacking code, changing server configs, etc. I'm not sure you understand what you're actually doing here - you're not setting a display cutoff, you're altering the PHP garbage collection config. We've had issues with people tinkering with this and I feel compelled to note, you're "voiding your warranty" so-to-speak and we will not provide tech support should you end up with "people aren't staying logged in" etc. Proceed at your own risk.
  15. Because IPS4 uses PHP sessions and the default garbage collection is 30 minutes. Editing PHP configurations is beyond most users and and it's really not necessary - if you want to make your site look more busy than it actually is, there's plugins in the marketplace to replace the online user block. You should ideally leave the stock settings alone.
  16. Your "between activity and posts" threw me off, sorry. In 4.1.12 (pending QA) - you can click load more, load more, load more, scroll down, click a topic, then click back and it will take you where you left off.
  17. Please further explain what you mean -- "between activity and posts." What are you trying to toggle between that can't be accomplished with the filter bar?
  18. Unfortunately, not yet, sorry. It should be within the next few releases though. It's something that's become much more involved.
  19. Marking not planned because an overhaul of the tag system will likely address much of this.
  20. This is too large of a scope for a single feature suggestion. I'll be starting a gallery review feedback topic in the client lounge this week and we should include this to formulate a game plan.
  21. Can someone provide a couple of examples? We've had trouble pinning this down as the ones the devs have looked at have had goofy exif data. Thanks.
  22. I'm sorry for that experience. Please send me the ticket number and I'll be happy to follow up on that.
  23. We have some cool ideas for the AS that we think should solve most of your concerns, including those mentioned here. On the fly filtering may be one thing. We're not going to do pagination (as in navigate to page 4) as it just doesn't fit technically into the backend of the content discovery module.... but, we are working on navigation and you will be able to click a topic in the stream, hit back and pick up where you left off. I get the sense that's what most want with "pagination" so we'll start there. That's not months out by any means and should be relatively soon. Virtually any example given regarding "it doesn't do what VNC did" has been successfully refuted. It is every bit as powerful as VNC and then some - I think there's just general confusion on how to use it to its full potential and we need to make a few improvements to make it more intuitive. Thanks for the tangible, bullet list feedback - it's very helpful.
  24. There's very active sites that love it. Admittedly, some that don't as well. Perhaps you can outline specifics in terms of what you'd like to see or what would help the user experience and get the most from the AS. I know for some, the gut reaction is "give us the old way." Let's move past that for a moment and focus on the modern content discovery system that's in place now. What specifically makes it feel "clumsy?" When you reference pagination are you literally meaning you want to click page 6 (and if so, why?) or are you mostly wanting to maintain browser navigation, ie: click a topic, then click back to return to your place in the stream. In the case of the latter, we are working on just that and improving the overall flow of following through the stream. In the case of old-school pagination as in click page 6 -- we've tested different methods and all lead to significant performance overhead given how the stream works. My sense is, you don't really care about arbitrary page numbers, but instead want to maintain your place in the stream (correct me if I'm wrong and please do indicate why) -- in which case, we believe this will be doable. I'm very anxious for further feedback on this, but let's please keep the focus on the AS -- we're nowhere near the point of considering a "VNC Throwback" feature at this juncture. Tell us what would make the AS perfect for you and what your top issues are, specifically. Thanks as always.
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