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#41 MrDenny

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Posted 15 December 2009 - 07:27 AM

I'd also like to thank everyone who has gotten involved thus far, both positive, negative and "I don't care"...

Whether or not it's used and implemented, your feedback is appreciated and invaluable to the process.

I know not everyone will be happy, but I do hope you feel, really feel, that I've tried to find the middle ground amidst necessity.

To be honest John, the first attempt at the kitelife upgrade was MMMmmmm not good. You have not only asked for and listened to bitches, complaints and suggestions but you have worked (tweaked) on it for quite some time. I think you have put a lot more time into this than you anticipated but the results show it. I spent some time on kitelife over the past 2 days and must say I am starting to like it quite a bit. I tried all the "skins" and found the default IP.Board to be the best for me. The Clasic blue is not much different and the Lo-Fi doesn't loose much at all for the low band with folks. The pro skin is very sharp looking but for the older set of eyes a bit of a strain. Perhaps a larger monitor is in order. I'm glad you held off long enough to work out the bugs before bringing it over to the Rev forum. By the time it gets here it will be an improvement for not only you and the admins but for the user as well.

Denny #12

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#42 Baloo

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Posted 15 December 2009 - 12:02 PM

Anyone who has not looked at the Kitelife forum in the last Day, pop on and look at it now.

John has managed to alter one of the things I found off putting.

Now when you log on to the "home" page the active topics, in forum tools is easy to see. Click on it and you then have the option to view 24hrs, week, 2 weeks etc, this is something I have always forund useful and did have to look down to the bottom of what was quite a long page.

It is getting better, more user friendly than ever.

I am starting to like it now. And you have the choice of choosing different skins to suit your mood.

#43 lummas

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Posted 15 December 2009 - 01:24 PM

John, having just been tasked with completely ovrhauling our work web site, I certainly agree with simplifying the admin and tightening up security are vital and unavoidable, so I would add my voice to the 'go for it' camp.

I can tell you that I do see significantly slower loading times on all pages of the Kitelife forum than I do on here. I know I can switch to the Low-Fi view as an option but heck, I like the look of the Kitelife site, so I am not sure I would want to. So I definitely think anything you can do to focus on speed will be important.

Other than that though, the Kitelife site looks pretty good to me and I am sure I will get used to whatever changes are made pretty quickly. We always do as software/websites change.

Keep up the great work. We appreciate it.

Mark

#44 Kitelife

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Posted 15 December 2009 - 01:50 PM

All comments read and acknowledged. ;)

Part of what's happening here of course, I hope you realize, is that my sincere efforts to make this work have encouraged some of you to reach into the new Kitelife forum functionality a little further, and some are recovering from the shock of the new layout... In all reality, not so much has actually been changed from the first upgrade, but relevant information and introduction has been implemented a little more effectively.

The new forum does work very well (from a functionality standpoint), I can assure you... As a web designer, I'm perhaps a little more critical of such things and toss new scripts/software on a daily basis for various reasons, bot functional and aesthetic... However, the drastically different layout and slight change in how some of the old functions have carried over are a bit of a shock, understandably.

I think Jeepster, Baloo and Guru4tru are three prime examples of great folks who found the new format confusing due the differences... As I'm sure they'll attest however, it's all becoming clear as they use the new system more and more... It loads a little slower than the current set up here but still well within tolerances I think (been to www.prismkites.com or www.kittyhawk.com lately?), and some of the other added features are really most excellent.

Just a few of the abilities/tools on the Kitelife forum now, and NOT on this older Rev forum:

- Drag and drop moving of PMs between folders.
- Mark PMs as unread, so you can come back and easily find PMs you want to answer later.
- Add "positive" rating to posts, acknowledging helpful attitudes, information and content.
- Clearer "multiquote" button, so you can reply to multiple posts in one shot.
- Progress meter for file uploads, so you know if it's stalled or moving.
- Insert YouTube videos directly into a post, so you don't have to leave the forum for viewing.
- Search for text in your PMs, making it easier to find information there.
- Threaded PM discussions, so you can see all PM interactions under one topic on the same page.
- Add multiple people to PM discussions after the fact, to facilitate private group PM discussions.
- Easy, integrated tool for printing or downloading (HTML/Word) entire forum topics.
- Choice of "active topics" or "new content", allowing you to retain the list of new topics (for later) when you don't read them now.
- Enhanced spammer blocking, including "challenge questions" (like 2+5 equals?) on the registration page to cull out bots and allow only real humans.

Those are just a few, most of which are done using "hooks" (small addon plugins) which are being developed and improved every day, instead of having to actually modify the forum code and templates to add these types of features... And of course, new skins are released on a fairly regular basis, so the available choices should only improve from here on out.

Again, the new forum kicks a$$ on the whole and if you've not spent at least a couple of days trying to actively use the new format, it may just be a matter of shock and resistance... I speak from personal experience on that note, as I HATED the new look when I first implemented it but my sentiments changed within a short time, and I'd never, ever go back to this one again.

Thanks again to all (even the nay-sayers), this is a work in progress... Not only on my end as the developer here, but also from a familiarity and educational standpoint.

Please keep it coming, every bit, pro and con. ;)

John Barresi

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#45 Kitelife

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Posted 15 December 2009 - 01:57 PM

Alright, I think I've tackled and addressed all the "hot topics" regarding the new format as best I can...

Any other outstanding items that absolutely rub you raw about the format being used on the Kitelife forum?

http://www.kitelife.com/forum

Let's call this the "last call" for testing, abuse and skunkworking... List any outstanding items, please... I'll try and address/fix anything else you bring up.

Once we've stalled on that front, I'll incorporate all that into the upgrade when we do it here to try and make it as seamless as possible. ;)

John Barresi

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"We cannot direct the wind, but we can adjust the sails."
(found in a fortune cookie - possibly an Einstein quote)

My full list of kite articles - kitelife.com/author/john-barresi
 

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#46 Kitelife

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Posted 15 December 2009 - 02:36 PM

Another note, regarding load time on the new format...

Here's the stock script at work without any of the banners and such, seems quick enough to me.

http://community.invisionpower.com/

Anyone else care to test and comment?

John Barresi

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"We cannot direct the wind, but we can adjust the sails."
(found in a fortune cookie - possibly an Einstein quote)

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#47 Baloo

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Posted 15 December 2009 - 03:06 PM

Whatever the "stock script" might be seems to load about as fast as this forum.

If that is any help at all.

Once again, only my perseption on my system.

#48 Dave M

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Posted 15 December 2009 - 03:26 PM

Hi John,


I have been using exactly this new board for some time on an Embroidery software forum that I belong to.

After a few of days of use navigating around, you soon begin to see the benefits as a user and after
a month or so I have even forgot what the old board looked like :)

I have experienced no noticeable difference in load times from here in the UK either.

Also I realise that there are all levels of computer competence when it comes to using forums,
might I possibly suggest doing some short screen recording videos if any areas of the new forum
prove difficult to explain in words. e.g Post a picture, settings, profile etc



regards


Dave

#49 lummas

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Posted 15 December 2009 - 03:46 PM

Thanks for the "stock script" link John. An interesting observation. I clicked on the stock script ink you gave and it loaded the page fully in just under 3 seconds. On the same PC I then clicked on the kitelife forum link and it took just under 5 seconds to build the page, but had done, but with errors at the bottom. No matter how I navigate there or reload the page it still notes errors. When i looked at it earlier today it took a lot longer to load but had no errors.

Not sure what that indicates or if you are working on anything, but just wanted to provide the feedback, since you were looking for it right now.

Mark

#50 Kitelife

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Posted 15 December 2009 - 04:07 PM

Mark, will you PM or email with some details on the errors you're getting?

John Barresi

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#51 lummas

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Posted 15 December 2009 - 04:17 PM

John, Sent you and email with screenshots in it.

Hope it helps.

Mark

#52 Kitelife

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Posted 15 December 2009 - 05:09 PM

Got it, reply sent, thanks Mark. ;)

John Barresi

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#53 Litsong

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Posted 15 December 2009 - 06:49 PM

i am with you now JB.

it takes time for me to convert but after my hibernation, i am back.

nothing wrong with "change", it is a way of evolution.

knowing how much effort you put into the kitelife, and kiteworld in general,
and since you are the one doing it all (holding the space for us to hangout and what not)
you be the host.

i am sure you have the best interest of the big picture in sight, lead.

we voiced out our grumble just so you are not running too fast, and you heard us.
then you think it over and still sure about your proposal, that's enough for me to convert.

Love and gratitude.
Litsong
love, as if you have never been hurt before.....

#54 oh oh

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Posted 15 December 2009 - 08:02 PM

Get on with it John

#55 Kitelife

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Posted 15 December 2009 - 09:37 PM

Roughly guessing, based on the responses thus far, I'd say it's about an 80/20 vote of confidence at this point.

Still looking for any "last minute" gripes and suggestions on the new format, then I'll move to implement it. ;)

Thanks all, sincerely.

John Barresi

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President - American Kitefliers Association

"We cannot direct the wind, but we can adjust the sails."
(found in a fortune cookie - possibly an Einstein quote)

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#56 Dano

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Posted 16 December 2009 - 12:17 PM

"GREEN LIGHT", GO!

;)

#57 spotter

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Posted 16 December 2009 - 05:31 PM

By all means change some stuff around and give the forums a fresh new look. The only thing I say is to keep it simple. I stopped looking at the kitelife forums a bit due to the fact that it was hard to read and find what I was looking for. I think for forums the best advise is the KISS solution (Keep It Simple Stupid).

Anyway my 2c worth.
Trying to fly "Down Under"

#58 Windbag

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Posted 16 December 2009 - 07:51 PM

John, when I get to the log in screen on RevKites I can put in my user name & password right on the main screen, click enter & I'm logged in to search for new items. On Kitelife I have to click sign in & wait for a new page to load so I can put in the user name & password. I prefer having the log in on the main forum screen.

Many months ago I had the two forums set up to log in automatically as soon as I loaded Firefox with tabs for all of the web pages I frequent. It seemed to me that if I left my PC on all day I didn't get all the new posts so I log out each time after reading the new posts. Waiting for Kitelife to get to the log in screen isn't stopping me from using the forum but it is a tad annoying. Is there a way to get the log in screen on the main forum page or is it the way you keep down the spam?

Either way, go with what works best for you & the other moderators to manage the forum. I believe all of the members on both forums come here for all the great information available on learning about our passion -- flying kites!

Thank you for the great forum. :P
Have fun, Ray.

#59 Kitelife

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Posted 16 December 2009 - 11:32 PM

Ray, you should be able to click "remember my login" so it logs you in automatically each time. ;)

John Barresi

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#60 beach

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Posted 17 December 2009 - 02:10 PM

As most of you know I hate changes but I have learned that in order to grow things must change so from my end John handle it
and I'll hate it B) , but once I wrap this old tired mind around it and with the help of all you out there I'll get it figured out..... Then
once it's all just a thing of the past it'll be like this old forum and I'll be able to figure it out or I'll just call, John,John, Monk, or
any of the others who make my day easier and cuss them out...... :blue-cool: On the plus side to be totally honest we as a collective
have out grown this forum and the set up of this and I'm here to tell you it's not going to get any smaller so for us to continue to
grow we got to make some changes... So even when I don't like change I understand it and if any of you have any issues with the
new forum call me direct at 619-750-8770 and we' ll get them worked out, so John be aware if we have problems you'll be getting
my call and we know how much you love my questions........ :confused!: :confused!: :confused!: Ben GF? :blue-cool:




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