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Responses to the new layouts

Posted by Kaelten Jun 18, 2009 at 15:52 UTC

Many people have very specific likes, and some people (like those with eye problems) have very specific needs. I think it's important to try to give a way for everyone to be able to use the site.

There are some very hard realities. We're not the greatest designers. At times we can bust our asses for days and be lucky to have something the won't make you run in terror. We're also under a very heavy workload and have a lot going on, and there is only two of us. So please keep in mind that the new design isn't really the target end point it's a stopping point into perfecting the main designs.

Approximately 25% of the users have voted a dislike for the new theme, with only about 17% showing a strong dislike. That's understandable.

For these reasons we've brought a theming system into the mix. It's currently not possible to replicate the old theme 100%, but it does give you a lot of control over the look of the website. The corners, the paddings, the fonts, and the colors, and more. We're also open to working with people to get more power added to the theming system so that their needs and wants can be met.

I'm hoping that as time goes by we'll be able to see an amazing set of templates that will provide to the needs of all of the users.

So I apologize to the people who are hating the new theme and want something different, or just the old one. However, I do thank you for all of the feedback and the honesty with us. Please keep it coming.

A few links people may find useful:

  1. 24 comments

Site revamp

Posted by ckknight Jun 17, 2009 at 18:45 UTC

Hey beautiful people, ckknight here.

I've been working on the revamp of WowAce for a long time now, and I've gotten to the point where I'm comfortable launching it as the main site.

This is the largest change to happen to the codebase since WowAce moved from its old technology to the new CurseForge-based one.

Apart from the following, many, many bugs were fixed in the process.

  • There are gradients and rounded corners now. This provides a feeling of weight to the widgets on the page. (also: I'm pretty sure this makes us Web 2.0)
  • New color scheme for WowAce and CurseForge (though they do borrow some shades from the old).
  • Widgets are more spread out than before, allowing an easier eye-travel path.
  • Streamlined pages where every page of the same type (e.g. details, listing, main page, edit) have the same feel, rather than differing from page-to-page.
  • Many various layout fixes.
  • Improved form layout, as you can see on http://www.wowace.com/create-project/
    • the most important field (Project name) is larger
    • icons show where they make sense, e.g. on the categories and languages.
    • Many-to-many editing pages are far, far easier to use. Examples would include project membership assignments.
  • Tab-based navigational interface instead of a pseudo-tabbed interface or dropdowns.
  • Visible user actions in the upper-right corner of every page, this replaces any dropdowns that the user might experience.
  • Easy to access, but hidden by default, admin actions, below user actions. This would appear only if a user has special rights to an object.
  • Listings: (good example: http://www.wowace.com/projects/pitbull4/tickets/)
    • Much more advanced filtering system
      • Icons in some filters
      • More advanced filters in most cases
      • Date-based filters
      • Per-page specification (if you are an author or QA person and want to see all the tickets on one page, you can. This is limited to authors so that the database doesn't become overloaded unnecessarily.)
      • Bulk editing is a lot cleaner and easier. This is used for ticket management.
    • Better visibility of sorting and pagination
    • Heavy use of icons for graphical feedback.
    • Create links on the top-right. e.g. On the projects listing, "Create project" shows up. On a tickets listing, "Post a ticket" shows up.
  • Use of openable widgets, e.g. post a comment. Instead of seeing a big white box before all comments, you click "Post a comment" first.
  • Contests system, for if we have code contests (which we just finished one), or image-based contests (if we want a logo contest or something along those lines). (http://www.wowace.com/contests/)
  • Theme system, which handles the styles of a site, where each site has a separate theme, but users can create their own themes and post them for others to use. (http://www.wowace.com/themes/)
    • This is very powerful and will allow custom theming of sub-sites (e.g. atlasmod.com or support.curse.com) very easily.
  • Greater consistency for posting. Previously, the "Preview" of a post might look very different from the final result, now, they look exactly the same in both situations.
  • Due to the hidden admin actions, more actions can be placed inside. On a project, the mainline repository is far more accessible because of this. Many authors had issues figuring out what was possible before, but this alleviates most worries.
  • Categories have all been given icons. This was mostly in anticipation for the upcoming Curse Client 4.0, but it's also adopted on the new CurseForge as well. Everywhere a category would show, its icon shows now. (Eventually, Curse.com will sync these icons as well.)
  • Comments
    • banning options have been added to make it easier to fight The War on Spam.
    • direct linking of comments now provide links that will work regardless of pagination.
  • Users now have all their IP addresses tracked, rather than just one. This will allow us to better track gaming of the system, but mostly for spammers.
  • Sites have much better management, so that if we want to launch a new site based on CurseForge tech or change an existing site, this is very viable. This will become more prevalent later, if we launch a non-addon site (since CurseForge's technology is a very good project management system), a ticketing-only site (perhaps for support.curse.com or potentially other sites), or for authors to host a site with us based on one or more of their projects (e.g. atlasmod.com).
  • Implemented a data caching system. This should make page loads quite a bit faster overall, but their shouldn't be any horrible invalidation issues (here's hoping).
  • Set up for localization of the whole site. Every string is properly wrapped, but it doesn't hook into the localization app yet. That is low-priority and a few months off, after some more important things are taken care of.
  • Implement CCIP support (used by Curse Client 4.0). On files pages, there is a "4.0 Install" button in the top-right. Once CC 3.0 supports CCIP, the standard psyn links will be replaced with CCIP links.
  • Add icons to projects, as specified by the project owner.
  • When hovering over images that have been shrunk down, show the full image in a popup. (e.g. http://www.wowace.com/projects/)
  • When making a large comment, the textarea size will expand as you make more lines.
  • For search boxes, add an eyeglass icon as well as a grayed out "Search" text.
  • More Semantic HTML, which should help Search Engine Optimization (SEO) a bit.
  1. 18 comments

E-mail from Curse regarding password reset

Posted by Ackis Jun 03, 2009 at 19:23 UTC

In the past day or so, some people have reported getting an e-mail stating it is from Curse regarding a password reset. The mail looked something like:

Your CurseID password has been reset. To login, simply enter your username or e-mail address and the following password:

We encourage you to change this password as soon as you login.

Your e-mails have not been stolen/hacked, and this was not a fishing attempt. It was a template for the password reset sent by curse, and was sent inadvertently by the bulk mail provider for Curse.

Your passwords have not been reset.

  1. 5 comments

Author reward points, one month in

Posted by ckknight Jun 01, 2009 at 23:52 UTC

Hello friends, ckknight here.

We've been calculating points for the author rewards program for one month now. The numbers we had been using to give points was based on an estimate, which, after one month of business, has turned out to be a bit of an overestimate. You may notice that points generated are less than before, because of this.

We expect that, over time, the amount of points will increase as the Curse Premium becomes more popular (likely when the next WoW patch arrives).

I know it's a bit shocking, but authors had been getting roughly 40% of the Curse Premium revenue, now it is dropped to its previously declared 20%, though it is possible that this number may raise over time, mostly dependent on how popular Curse Premium becomes.

Any questions or concerns (from authors) can be addressed in comments to this announcement or by joining us on IRC on irc.freenode.net at #WowAce. I (ckknight) should be able to field any questions.

  1. 8 comments

Contests for BlizzCon tickets

Posted by ckknight May 22, 2009 at 22:42 UTC

Hey beautiful people, ckknight here.

We at Curse.com are holding three contests for addon authors within the Curse Network (i.e. WowAce and CurseForge). The grand prize for each contest is a BlizzCon ticket. You'll be able to compete in all three contests, but you can only win one BlizzCon ticket total. We're also going to be providing Author Reward Points for runners-up.

Note: for the BlizzCon tickets, we won't be providing travel costs. You'll have to get to California on your own. Also, you need to be at least 18 years old.

The contests will run from now until June 15th, you can submit any time from here until then, and you can also revise your entries up until that point.

You can find the contests at http://beta.wowace.com/contests/. Yes, this is the beta site for WowAce, but it still should work fine, the contests system was easier to make with the new system than having to backport it. CurseForge authors shouldn't have a problem logging in or submitting entries.

We're hoping that by having these coding challenges, it'll be a bit more fun and interesting than giving out tickets to the top 3 authors or holding a simple raffle.

  1. 14 comments