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My Ideas and Suggestions for BBPress


  • DevynCJohnson
    Participant

    @devyncjohnson

    I am the owner and admin of http://dcjtech.info/ and I love computer programming. Not only do I love programming, but I love to help other developers. I would like to contribute to BBPress by offering some suggestions and ideas.

    Please keep in mind that these are just my ideas; I understand that the BBPress team has ideas, needs, and concerns of their own that they must address. In addition, even though I learned a lot about the WordPress and BBPress framework and inner workings, I admit that there are some parts that I may have over-looked or mis-understood. In summary, I am trying to help make BBPress better and more powerful based on what I know, and I want to contribute my ideas as a thanks to all the developers that have spent time and effort making BBPress what it is today.

    Now, for my ideas –

    1. BBPress needs more options and configurable items – the more customizable, the better. Obviously, some developers are concerned about confusing or overwhelming users, so make a special admin page for “advanced” or “miscellaneous” options. Some additional options I think are needed or helpful include disable/enable feeds, specific control over oEmbeds and auto-embed-links, and settings for SEO/SMO control (discussed in #2).

    2. Settings and controls for Search Engine Optimization (SEM) and Social Media Optimization (SMO) – SEM and SMO are important to many web admins. Adding options to configure such features may be wise. The “author” meta tag (and others) could be generated on a per-topic basis (if the admin enables such a feature). Here are some links for HTML5 meta tags for SEM and SMO (https://github.com/h5bp/html5-boilerplate/issues/1674 && https://gist.github.com/charlesmudy/b3740c73d5f4d5d5c1f4 && https://thomas.vanhoutte.be/miniblog/dynamic-html5-meta-tags-for-wordpress-header-php-file/)

    3. Integrate BBCodes and Shortcodes – This may be something the WordPress should do, or the BBPress developers could pass this idea to them. Add features and options for BBCodes. I think that merging “bbpress2 BBCode” (https://wordpress.org/plugins/bbpress-bbcode/), “bbpress2 shortcode whitelist” (https://wordpress.org/plugins/bbpress2-shortcode-whitelist/), and some ideas from GD BBpres Tools (https://wordpress.org/plugins/gd-bbpress-tools/).

    4. Add topic auto-suggestion – This feature can easily be added by merging this plugin – https://wordpress.org/plugins/bbpress-auto-suggest-topics-based-on-new-topic-title/ .

    5. Integrate other small, but helpful plugins – “External Links” (https://wordpress.org/plugins/sem-external-links/) and “BBPress Report Content” (https://wordpress.org/plugins/bbpress-report-content/) seem like candidates for merging.

    6. Disable/Enable BBPress modules/parts – Obviously, some people may not like or want “BBPress Report Content” or other plugins and features I suggest for merging and adding. The best solution may be to provide a special options page for disabling/enabling certain “BBPress modules” and features. For instance, I use “BBPress Report Content” and I disabled (and I dislike) the BBPress “SPAM” admin-link in my forums. Having more detailed and advanced options may help people like me. Also, more advanced options would (hopefully) make people less likely to edit core files.

    7. Export/Import BBPress settings – Correct me if I am wrong, but I do not think BBPress has an easy way to export/save settings to be imported to use as a backup or transfer/share settings.

    8. View counter – I think it would be useful to many people to have a “view counter” feature such as I have programmed in my website (http://dcjtech.info/forum/articles/general-computing/). It would be great if BBPress included options for view counters such as displaying topic views in the BBPress-Notice and forum columns (like where I replaced “voices/replies” with “views/viewed”.

    9. Options to custom notices and other messages – Some people (like me and others seen on this BBPress forum) want to change “voices” or remove it. Having easy options for this may be helpful.

    10. Better forum access control – I would find it helpful to be able to specify that on a particular forum or sub-forum that users with particular permissions can only create new topics or reply.

    11. Remove “Topic:” from title – I see a need for some people (like me) to be able to easily configure the appearance of titles (both on the page and in the HTML “title” tag).

    12. Implement a built-in avatar system (perhaps BuddyPress or WordPress should use this rather than BBPress) – This would allow local avatars and provide a way for Gravatar to be disabled or used as a secondary. True, BuddyPress provides a way to upload avatars, and “Basic User Avatars” and “Simple Local Avatars” are plugins offering that feature. However, after upgrading my theme to HTML5 and removing Flash from my browser, I can no longer upload avatars using any of the three mentioned possibilities (backend or frontend). However, I can still upload media via the backend (w/o Flash) and via the frontend (with Flash). NOTE: I do list “plupload.full.min.js” and other similar scripts in Autoptimze “Exclude list”.

    13. Perhaps, “Grunion Contact Form” should be updated and integrated in BBPress.

    14. 100% HTML5 Compliant – I have not studied BBPress in this perspective, so it is possible that I may be very wrong or the developers have a plan already. However, use of HTML5 (or the option to do so) would be helpful.

    If you see any features on my website that you want to implement in BBPress, feel free to let me know and then I can give you the code and tell you how I did it. Also, I use my own style sheets for BBPress, BuddyPress, and some plugins. I have been able to increase performance and decrease size by using a CSS minifier (http://csscompressor.com/) and implementing ideas from errors given by a CSS checker (http://csslint.net/). I saw significant improvements even before I changed the style sheets to specifically suit my website.

    By the way, making BBPress templates that can be placed in the regular WordPress template was a great idea and feature for BBPress; smart thinking BBPress developers.

Viewing 8 replies - 1 through 8 (of 8 total)

  • Robkk
    Moderator

    @robkk

    Sorry I didn’t see approve the topic you created last week, but I did approve this one.

    Right now I am just going to go through this list real quick right now, but I might discuss more later today or after you reply again.

    • 1 – THere is an option to enable/disable oembeds, maybe disabling feeds could be useful though. SEO options may stay in a seperate plugin, but it depends on what specific things, maybe custom titles since you mentioned that.
    • 2 – SEO might be best if it was a seperate plugin like Yoasts plugin. The most important meta tags for your forums are the title and description tag, all the others are handled by either WordPress/your theme or another SEO plugin.
    • 3 – I can’t really say much about bbcodes, you can already use the html tags. You probably want something like spoiler tags I bet.
    • 4 – I can’t really say much about this either, it’s really a toss up. There needs to more people wanting this feature in core possibly? It might be better to have the autosuggest feature in the forum search instead.
    • 5 – Toss up for the external links plugin. I really like the Report content plugin.
    • 6 – bbPress already does this and the devs have this in mind for users. There probably shouldn’t be options for everything possible though, the settings area might become cluttered.
    • 7 – Yeah, maybe.
    • 8 – Not sure, I need a devs opinions on this.
    • 9 – There was a plugin that use to customize things like this, and it seems to be removed from the WordPress plugin repository.
    • 10 – I think I made a trac ticket about this, this might be possible with some other pieces of code implemented into bbPress 2.6.
    • 11 – You can easily do this with an SEO plugin.
    • 12 – I don’t think those plugins require flash to be used?? BuddyPress already has an upload avatar function. Heck it might be good for WordPress to implement something like this but they want users to use the Gravatar service, which is pretty handy though.
    • 13 – Grunion Contact Form is in the Jetpack plugin now. I don’t think bbPress should have a contact form module in it.
    • 14 – I think this might matter more in your theme. I think the bbPress templates are fine though.

    DevynCJohnson
    Participant

    @devyncjohnson

    @Robkk , thank you for your time.

    1. I did see the option for oEmbeds. However, after disabling oEmbeds and using WP-Sweep to remove all oEmbeds, WP-Sweep still finds oEmbeds after a few days. Currently, I wrote my own code to disable them.

    5. The Report content plugin has not been updated since November of 2014.

    12. True, I have tried BuddyPress’s upload-avatar feature and the various upload-avatar plugins, but they no longer work after I upgraded by website to HTML5. Notice that I mentioned that I can still upload media via the backend. My backend is using HTML4. You are right though, this is probably something for WordPress to implement rather than BBPress.


    Robkk
    Moderator

    @robkk

    1. That is oembed cache you are removing with WP-Sweep, not the oembeds itself.

    5. That was just 8-9 months ago. Some plugins do not need to update as frequently as others. This plugin basically is just using some bbPress hooks and filters to create its functionality for itself.

    12. What browser are you using? I could test this in a minute. And I guess any theme that is based off of the HTML5 boilerplate like HTML Blank theme, I would come across the same issue as you??


    DevynCJohnson
    Participant

    @devyncjohnson

    @robkk

    1. If the oEmbeds are disabled in the options, then how would I still have oEmbed cache accumulating?

    12. I use Firefox (latest) on Linux and Android. I occasionally use Chromium (also the latest version on Linux).

    By the way, thanks for all of your help. However, keep in mind that my main purpose for this thread is to give the BBPress developers some ideas rather than fix my problems.


    PinkishHue
    Participant

    @pinkishhue

    Not sure if this is the right place to add another suggestion but something that just occurred to me that I think would be helpful –

    Perhaps all bbpress custom post types could be grouped together under 1 ‘bbpress’ entry in the admin menu. I find it feels quite cluttered once you’ve installed bbpress and suddenly have the 3 entries there for forums, topics & replies, and this must also be confusing for less experienced users who might not understand that they are 3 different post types.


    Robkk
    Moderator

    @robkk

    @devyncjohnson

    1. Well yeah the cache staying not removing is the issue, it could be a bug in WordPress itself since that caches the oembeds. What peice of code did you use to fix this?

    12. I couldn’t duplicate the issue on latest Firefox on W10 using the html5 blank theme.

    Yeah I know, I bookmarked most of the suggestions for features for the bbPress plugin on this site, but if you are experiencing some kind of issue, then why not help out too.

    What I got from you that could possibly make the bbPress plugin are.

    option to turn off feeds.
    add topic auto-suggestion (might be better for the forum search though)
    Integrate some plugins like report content (maybe external links)
    Export and import settings
    View counter
    Custom notices
    Specific forum permissions
    Avatar system

    Most of the SEO things could be best to have in a separate plugin, or should be left to the theme and how it is set up.

    @pinkishhue

    The forum requests and feedback is for this type of thing. If you think some codex article should be available, features should be in bbPress, this site bbpress.org should have some style fixes, etc. this forum is where you post all that in. If you need to create a new topic with a list of suggestions in a list from yourself, you can do that.

    The way the menu items show up has always been like that since bbPress v1 standalone. It could be easier for users to see all the post types in one section, this might need another opinion though. I think it is fine either way though. It will be annoying to change all the codex articles if we do change that though haha.


    DevynCJohnson
    Participant

    @devyncjohnson

    @robkk , thanks for everything. I appreciate the fact that you took the time to read my ideas and such. The BuddyPress and WordPress community does not seem to notice my suggestions.

    Your summary is right. However, when I say “topic auto-suggestion”, I am referring to the “bbPress Live Topic Suggestions” plugin (https://wordpress.org/plugins/bbpress-auto-suggest-topics-based-on-new-topic-title/).

    1. As for the oEmbed cache code that I use, the code is below. This is not a real fix/solution since I remove/disable auto-embedding and three shortcodes. Basically, I am making it impossible for oEmbed cache to form.

    remove_filter('the_content',array($GLOBALS['wp_embed'],'autoembed'),8);
    remove_shortcode('audio');
    remove_shortcode('video');
    remove_shortcode('playlist');

    By the way, the BBPress developers may want to consider designing the “bbp-topic-description” to look similar to the code below. I use that format on my website; the code snippet below was taken from http://dcjtech.info/topic/directx-introduction/ . The below code uses Microdata (like Hentry/Hatom and others) and is used by many search engines.

    <p class="bbp-topic-description">This topic was published by <em><span class="p-author h-card fn author post-author" itemprop="author">DevynCJohnson</span></em> and viewed 201 times since "<time itemprop="datePublished" class="dt-published published entry-date uploaded" datetime="2015-07-28">July 28, 2015 @ 06:00UTC</time>".</p>

    The BBPress developers are more than welcome to ask me for code or ask how I created/added some particular feature.


    Robkk
    Moderator

    @robkk

    I am just saying the auto suggest topics plugin’s script might make it into core if it was in forum search and extend that, then it could also be use for the new topic title too. It is just the way I see it.

    1. oembed in bbPress basically uses that same filter, but for each of the topics and replies content. The filter is just wrapped in a conditional if you did enable oembeds in bbPress.

    Here is the code for replies that is in the bbPress core.

    function bbp_reply_content_autoembed() {
    	global $wp_embed;
    	if ( bbp_use_autoembed() && is_a( $wp_embed, 'WP_Embed' ) ) {
    		add_filter( 'bbp_get_reply_content', array( $wp_embed, 'autoembed' ), 2 );
    	}
    }

    Maybe removing the shortcode helps, but I will keep an eye on that.

    I do not think the description needs that much of a drastic change. Because it might matter more to know the last who posted, when was the last post, how many users are in the topic, and how many posts, and also this information is pretty handy for regular forum users to know about. Plus bbpress has a way to see pending/spam replies in a topic by clicking the hidden posts link in the description.

    There needs to be information that tells google that this is a forum, and not a blog post for example.

    Published date is almost always going to get picked up by google.

    There might be other areas to add schematic microdata like what is listed in this.

    http://schema.org/DiscussionForumPosting

    The data might also be best to place around the actual post.

Viewing 8 replies - 1 through 8 (of 8 total)
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