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Cool Sci-Fi Forums Reboot!

Discussion in 'Announcements and News' started by Alien Soup, Mar 13, 2013.

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  1. Alien Soup

    Alien Soup Head Chef

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2007
    Sometime in the next few days when you visit Cool Sci-Fi you will be greeted by an entirely different forum! :eek:

    We have been on our current software platform, vBulletin, for quite a number of years now and the time has come for a change. After a lot of thought on the subject we are converting to XenForo.

    The decision to switch our software platform was not an easy one because it means that you, our community members, will be faced with getting used to a new interface for reading & posting in the forums. It also means that some features that are currently available will no longer be an option. The flip-side of it though is that you will have many new features to take advantage of! :cool:

    XenForo has one purpose, forum discussion. That means everything is geared to help make it easier to communicate with each other. Something as simple as posting a YouTube video will no longer require you to copy & paste the video ID and remembering what tag to use, instead you can just copy & paste the URL of the video right into your post and it will automatically display the video! You will be able to log in with your Facebook account, or associate your existing Cool Sci-Fi account to Facebook, to easily share interesting topics with your friends. When you include an image in your post you will no longer have to worry about it stretching the screen display, instead the image will be automatically resized to fit into your browser window. If you visit a lot of sites and use a Gravatar account for you avatar than you will be able to use it here as well. Creating new conversations & responding will be a lot less effort and will be a breeze no matter your technical experience.

    In short, the software choice is going to reboot us back to concentrating on the forum discussions with very little else tacked on. ;) It will take some getting used to but in short time we believe the community will enjoy it.

    Along with the new software we are also getting a new look & feel! The new Cool Sci-Fi design has a retro feel to it inspired by the Doo-Wop era of 1950's Rock & Roll! We wanted to avoid the typical dark & brooding designs associated with most 'sci-fi' sites so we went back in time for inspiration, back to the days of hanging out at the local diner and watching movies like The Blob at the drive-in movie theater.

    We expect the conversion to take about a day to complete so if you come visiting and don't see anything, or worse yet, see an error message on the screen, do not worry because it just means we will be back shortly.


    Stay tuned, Space Rangers!
     
  2. Martian

    Martian Rocket Ranger

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2011
    Location:
    Mars
    Thanks for the heads-up!
     
  3. Kevin

    Kevin Code Monkey Staff Abductee

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2004
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    ... and we are live! :cool:

    Still some things to do, like bringing back all of our old smilies, and some other little tweaks but nothing major. The conversion went pretty smooth and no major problems encountered.

    Please, poke around, check out some of the new features. Post a few new threads in the forums and check out the new ways of embedding YouTube images or attaching images. You can associate your Facebook account to easily login or to 'Like' your favorite threads.

    Let us know what you think!
     
  4. Azhria Lilu

    Azhria Lilu Rocket Ranger

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2002
    Location:
    Derbyshire, UK
    Love it :D
     
  5. Mirelly

    Mirelly Mouthy Cow

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2013
    Location:
    UK
    It's very nice. However I am either impressed by your funding or else perplexed why you're not using the excellent open source forum script: small machines forum.
     
  6. Azhria Lilu

    Azhria Lilu Rocket Ranger

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2002
    Location:
    Derbyshire, UK
    SMF isn't that excellent, it's actually quite clunky in places :) XenForo (the software being used) is the best on the market currently :D
     
  7. Mirelly

    Mirelly Mouthy Cow

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2013
    Location:
    UK
    Fair enough. Me? I settle for free -- clunky or not -- every time. :p
     
  8. Azhria Lilu

    Azhria Lilu Rocket Ranger

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2002
    Location:
    Derbyshire, UK
    hehehe, it's all a matter of taste when it comes down to it :D
     
  9. Mirelly

    Mirelly Mouthy Cow

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2013
    Location:
    UK
    Oh, not taste, Lilu ... for me it's a matter of cash ... I don't like letting it go. ;)

    I like this new forum. Very slick and neat, with a very attractive skin. I'm not very good with skins and my own SMF forum is very very klutzy in appearance as a result. Still, it's the content that matters. :D
     
  10. Kevin

    Kevin Code Monkey Staff Abductee

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2004
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    Just a little heads up as part of our post-conversion tweaks that we needed to rebuild the cache so that 'I posted in this thread' mini-avatars show up. Not sure what I'm referring to? The pic below will help. :D

    When you are browsing the forum thread listings you can tell if you posted in the thread because a mini version of your own avatar will appear to the left of the thread title in the bottom right of the thread starters avatar. In the thread below you can see my own mini-avatar in 4 of the 5 thread titles.

    Thread Avatar Markers.png
     
  11. Kevin

    Kevin Code Monkey Staff Abductee

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2004
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    CNN videos can now be embedded directly here at Cool Sci-Fi! (y) Just copy & past the URL into your post and the video should automatically appear just like YouTube videos & others. If it doesn't, please let me know and I'll take look. :)



    Please note that CNN does not yet offer an HTML5 iframe solution for embedding videos, only standard embedded objects using Adobe Flash. That means if you're using iOS or a newer Android device and don't see the videos then please blame CNN, not us. :(
     

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