Bring4th_Steve writes: I thought I would take a quick moment to give an overview of what had recently been done to the Blogging system, so that Bring4th members could see how the changes will hopefully make their blogging lives a little more interesting and rewarding!

The problems that were recently addressed have to do mostly with the comments section. At this time, Bring4th has nearly 500 comments in the comments database supporting the individual blog posts that are contributed by the Bring4th community. Up until now, when a comment was made on behalf of a member’s blog post, no notifications were ever issued to the blog author. This has been an unfortunate feature omission, because it reduces the chance of continued dialogue since the blog author may or may not ever realize that someone posted a comment.

Well, that has since changed. Over this past weekend, I was able to develop some additional notification options for the blogging system, which was custom-designed for Bring4th back in 2008.

The upgrades will now:

  1. Allow a Bring4th blog author to toggle whether e-mail notifications are sent for each new blog response.

  2. Allow a Bring4th member to directly reply to anyone’s comment within a blog post. The Bring4th member who is being addressed in the comments section will receive an e-mail notification that their comment was read and responded to.

  3. Timestamp each comment so that everyone can see the “freshness factor” of each comment, and to avoid accidentally responding to the previously ambiguous comments, which may have matured to have become a few years old!

These new features should significantly improve the usefulness of the blog comments, as well as the timeliness by which continued dialogue might ensue.

In addition to these improvements, I fixed up a couple of problem spots with the user system. As it turns out, we upgraded the forum software multiple times over the past couple of years. With each upgrade, I somehow have overwritten customizations that permitted new members to engage their personal blog space and begin publishing. Yikes! Sorry, about that!

To remedy the situation, we now run a script on a schedule that synchronizes all of the user permissions between the various moving parts of Bring4th, despite which system becomes upgraded or replaced in the future. This now clears the way for new members of Bring4th so they can more easily commence with any publishing intentions.

If anyone has any comments or suggestions for Bring4th, please let me know! Keep in mind that we have limited control over forum features, as the forum is a massive set of applications designed by another organization. But if certain features are desired, we could at least look to see if any plug-ins are available to accommodate the requested feature.

Above all, please respond to this blog post if you run into any site errors! Theoretically, I’ll now receive your comments within moments of you submitting them. :-)