Changes to the Forums

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White Phoenix
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Changes to the Forums

Post by White Phoenix » Tue 2017.Aug.08, 20:11

Welcome back, fellow members. I hope you like the changes so far.

The first change you will notice is the lack of style. The ghost style is not available right now because of the upgrade to the forum software. However, I am studying PHP and hopefully will become proficient enough to re-create it from scratch without being dependent on any other style. I also will be creating a new style, dungeon, based on the design of the main site and maybe a new Hallowe’en type. Or instead, if I feel daring, I might do a theme for types that would be found in a dungeon (ghost, dark, psychic, dragon, fairy[?], steel, poison, [rock, ground,... I don’t want to get too carried away.]) If you have suggestions, post in the Forums chamber of the Feedback forum.

Having stated all of that, there are openings for administrators with PHP, MySQL/PHPMyAdmin, and phpBB experience. Experience in other forum software, HTML, graphics creation, and JavaScript will be a plus as well.

Also there would be changes you may like to make on your account(s). Some of you may have multiple accounts that you created that you would like to have eliminated. If you wish to do this, contact me via PM and I can either delete your accounts with or without deleting your posts, or combine your accounts into the account of your choice which will increase your overall post count. This will increase your rank.

I have taken the liberty of standardizing the sizes of everyone’s avatars who uploaded them. I am also in the process of adding default pokémon avatars. I highly recommend that you upload your avatar rather than use a link to a image storage service. There have been reports of image services being unreliable and really we have a lot of space to store these images. The size requirements are such that the avatars and signatures do not take up much room. If there is a problem uploading or with an image you like being the wrong size or format, I would be willing to help you out by editing your favorite image so you can use it. PM me for details. More about avatars and signatures are in the replies and in a sticky in the Avatar and Signature Chamber.

Ranks have been changed for the non-staff members. I saw a problem with having the ranks named after ghost pokémon with so many being added each generation in order to keep from becomming outdated. So I created new ranks using creatures and vocations menacing and mysterious. This is being done as a trial experiment. We have an idea on doing a parallel ranking system, but in order for it to be carried out we would need a new extension created. This will be brought up in the Feedback Forums as well.

Some new ranks for staff members as well. There is a special rank of Service Technician. If you see anyone with this tag you know there is a problem that they are here to fix. They will not have any specific knowledge about the forums, so they will not be able to solve any problem you have with policies.

Other new ranks are the ASB (Anime Style Battling) Administrator and Referee. There is currently an opening for the ASB Administrator. Despite the title this position is more like a forum moderator. There are no openings for ASB referees as yet. If we have enough activity and interest we will be scouting for referees. Until then, the rank is only there for when it is needed.

Posts in the New Member Introductions, and Forum Help Requests chambers now count toward your post counts.

Chambers have been created to accommodate all the generations plus Pokémon Go. Considering its popularity, it was decided to give Go its own chamber. The Wi-Fi chambers for trading and battling have been put in their own chamber for all generations and games. More information about these can be found in the Forums Discussion chamber in the Feedback Forum.

Many new chambers have been added to the Interactive and Creativity Forum. The Library is subdivided into sections for Fan Fiction, Original Works (that is characters that you have created instead of another author’s work), the Poetry Corner, Pokémon Walkthroughs (moved from the Pokémon Games chamber), Pokémon Guides, and Pokémon Reviews.

The Art Gallery consists of Graphic Novels, Graphic Arts, Movies, and Avatars and Signatures.

There is a new section especially for those who are in the performing arts, The Stage which has the sub-chambers, Café Meloetta for film clips of singers, musicians and actors, and Café Chatot for audio clips of sound effects that were created by the poster.

The forums are now multi-lingual. At least there is now British English, American English, and casual Croatian. Those are the only language packs currently compatible with the current version of our forum software. I am still on the lookout for something more versatile, either in language packs, or forum software.

Once the forums are up and running with everything fixed, then I will be ready to start work on the Pokémon tools projects again. If you find anything that interests you and you would like to help, just post there. If I have anyone to work with, I will set up a private chamber to discuss the projects we are working on. While I have many projects not related to Pokémon, only the ones that are will be discussed and worked on here. Any other projects that I would be working on will be posted in the Miscellaneous Topics chamber. I need people who are at least familiar with office suite applications, but if you have programming skills in C++, Assembler, Python, or MySQL that would be excellent. Also artistic skills including 3D art and animation.

That brings us to the General Chambers Forum and the new POP (Parents of Pokémaniacs) chamber. This is a special chamber for parents of the kids who are members here. Even if you are not into Pokémon, you will have a place to chat with other parents about any topics of interest. While we have given up on COPPA (since it only applied to the US and this is an international site), we still want this to be a fun and safe place for the kids. The feedback from their parents will be welcome. Also any parent who is a member can become a candidate for a moderator position when there is an opening.

Speaking of the younger members, the COPPA group has been replaced with the Junior Members group. Junior Members are anyone under the age of 13 years old from anywhere in the world, not just the United States. If you do not enter a birthday, you will automatically be placed in the Junior Members group and remain there until you enter an appropriate birthdate. The junior members cannot disable censors, send emails, or attach or download files to private messages. If you are fine with that, then there is no need to enter a birthdate. Upon reaching their fifteenth birthday, junior members will automatically be switched into the Registered Members group.

Minor changes are different colors for the groups and ranks along with new rank images. If you find something that is not working, please PM me.

I hope you will enjoy the forums and site and will stick around. Thank you.
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FrostFire
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Re: Changes to the Forums

Post by FrostFire » Tue 2017.Aug.15, 17:00

Just popped in to say it's great to see GHPF is still up and running and it looks like a revival is in the making, nice work White Phoenix. This place has always held a special place in my heart, and I promise I'll try to stop by more often ;)
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Re: Changes to the Forums

Post by White Phoenix » Wed 2017.Aug.16, 16:45

FrostFire, damit. Follow me on Facebook, please. 🙏 Check the GHPF group. 💡 (I should link our Facebook group to the forums somehow.)

>sigh< I didn’t want to open the forums until the grand re-opening, but c’est la vie, I may as well. Everyone apparently has access anyway. ^_^;;

Also, welcome back. OH! That’s right. Were you here a couple of months ago? After Gengar checked in to switch his email, it shows you and QueenJoe (who hasn’t been here for years) visited a day or two later. It is possible it was a spambot or someone who attempted some mischief (and failed). But if it was you (like I stated before no one except an administrator should have been able to get in) then that would mean QueenJoe really was here too, and neither one of you left a message. :(
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Luke Ketchum
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Re: Changes to the Forums

Post by Luke Ketchum » Thu 2017.Aug.17, 09:59

Hey FrostFire, you pre-date me here, but it's nice to see one of the old members return to the forum :-D
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White Phoenix
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Re: Changes to the Forums

Post by White Phoenix » Tue 2017.Aug.22, 13:12

I am also posting a counterpart to this as a sticky in the Avatars and Signatures chamber.

Avatars are no longer allowed to be linked to from outside sources as there is a security risk to the privacy of the members doing so. If the remote site is compromised, the links can be traced back to here then links and other data in your account would become vulnerable. This should not really be a problem since uploading even from other sites is approved. For those who are at a loss for finding or creating a desired avatar, please continue reading.

Avatars are set to be displayed as 200 × 200 pixels. The files must be smaller than 500 KiB (512000 B). I have discovered the width and height of the actual image may be larger, but the avatar must be no more than the stated file size. If you need conversion between binary (IEC) and metric (SI) sizes then go here.

The sizes that I used are 200 px × 200 px × 150 dpi. Square works the best, but if the background is transparent, then it does not matter. TIFF cannot be used, and GIF files are limited to 256 colors (8 bit depth). For some reason using 32 bit depth ruins transparency. So I reluctantly recommend the proprietary PNG format at 24 bits. If you are using an animated avatar then the file size is large enough to accomodate an animated GIF file at the recommended width and height. If you are able to find or create an animated PNG file, that will work as well.

I removed thousands of duplicates I accidentally created merging avatar folders from all backups of the forums, and those generated by the spambots. Unfortunately, not being able to tell which ones were legit, some may be missing while others in the Special folder may be from spambots.

Please do not use any avatars in the Special folder unless you are the one to whom it belongs. I will close access to the Special folder when everyone has returned, let me know they are not returning, or one year, whichever comes first. The unused avatars will be deleted as they would probably be from spambots. The rest will be kept as backups in case of any accidents.

I have added a few avatars in the galleries, and created some nicer default avatars for the different groups. Please do not use the defaults for your own non-default avatar as it would be confusing. I can make custome avatars on request, provided I can find the needed source image(s). Avatar and signature requests may be left in the A & S chamber. Any talented artist may fufill any request.

The size limitations for signatures are as follows:
Maximum text length: 512 characters
Maximum signature links: 5
Maximum signature font size: 200%
Maximum emoticons per signature: 2

Now for the important part.
The signature image size (width by height) is set at 500 px × 100 px
This will probably be the display size in the same way the avatars are. There is no setting limiting the file size, but most likely anything larger than 625 KiB will fail, especially for animated images.
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White Phoenix
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Re: Changes to the Forums

Post by White Phoenix » Mon 2017.Aug.28, 06:27

I have also created a folder for signatures. I am not sure how to set it up for normal members to upload to it yet, but I will let you know when I figure it out. :D
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