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Near-Final List of Widgets

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  • Edwin Brown
    started a blog post Near-Final List of Widgets

    Near-Final List of Widgets

    We've been doing a lot of work with widgets, and I have something that is close to the final list that will ship with vB 4.0. It's always possible something could change, but it looks right now like we have.

    1. Static HTML: This allows you to enter any static html. That means you can put a remote page in an i-frame, or an image, or a google gadget, or a lot of other things.
    2. Static BB Code: This gives you the BBCode editor and lets you put the results into a widget.
    3. My Friends: You can specify a content type (posts, social groups, social group messages, visitor messages, CMS articles, or CMS static html), a maximum age, and a maximum count, and your users will see that content posted by their friends.
    4. Recent Polls: You can specify either a specific poll or list of polls, or a specific user, and/or a forum, plus a maximum age and count, and you'll see a summary of matching polls.
    5. RSS Feed: You can pull RSS content in RSS2 or atom format and see it in the widget.
    6. Navigation: You can specify any combination of top-level nodes, parent nodes of the current page, and/or siblings of the current page. I find this on the right with all three options on, plus the breadcrumbs along the top, to be a good way to move around in cms. You may like something different.
    7. Recent activity: This gives you threads which have had at least one post in the last X days (default is 1). You can set a maximum count (default is 10). Within that, you get the threads with:
      1. Most recent activity
      2. Most views
      3. Most responses

    8. Generalized Search Widget: This is by far the most powerful. You can specify
      1. A content type. Default is everything, which then ignores the type-specific options.
      2. A Forum, with or without its children
      3. A social group category
      4. A social group
      5. A user
      6. All friends
      7. Keywords
      8. Tags
      9. Prefixes
      10. Maximum age
      11. As always, maximum count


    The search widget gives you a lot of capability. You have to be a bit careful using it. You can't do any damage, but you can enter combinations of terms that will never return information. So for example if you enter a prefix and type "Social Group Messages", you're never going to get a result. That's because prefixes only apply to threads. We've tried to catch the obvious inconsistencies, and what we do is ignore additional search parameters that would generate an impossible search. If you put your head to it you can certainly enter combinations we didn't block.

    Keep in mind that each of these is a widget type. You create widgets, each of which is one of these types with a specific set of parameters. So you could for example have ten statichtml widgets, each of which used a different google gadget. You could make five different search widgets, and myFriends widgets for visitor messages, posts, and social group messages. That would be eighteen widgets from three types. You then make eighteen page arrangements, and you can make multiple cms pages with each arrangement. If you have a hundred pages that use the same arrangement, you can change the widget on all 100 pages by changing it on the master arrangement. So although there are "only" eight widget types, you could easily find yourself creating dozens of widgets from the two or three types you find most useful.

    I'm intentionally not posting pictures. We're working hard on moving pages to the new styles, but there's a lot of work to do and we haven't done any of the widget or widget admin pages. The appearance at the moment is no different from my earlier post.

    Hope this helps.

    • Edwin Brown
      #63
      Edwin Brown commented
      Editing a comment
      Originally posted by Booth;bt6477
      That is disappointing. I like the idea of a mirror forum thread, but still the comments should also appear underneath the article and there should also be a quick comment box (like quick reply) so that users can quickly add their comments about the article on the same page. Our less savvy members want as few clicks as possible.

      Obviously if there's more than 10 comments it would be desirable to be able to click for the next page of comments with the article staying at the top of the page. A link to the forum thread would be good to include at the foot of the page.
      There was a lot of discussion here on this issue, which involved the developers and our support staff. As a result, there is now another widget available. If the admin has configured the CMS system to use the automatic comment-thread feature, this widget will display the most recent posts and allow the user to comment. The forum thread is always available, so to view more comments or for search results you'll see the forum thread display. I think that's exactly what you want.

    • nwingate
      #64
      nwingate commented
      Editing a comment
      Awesome Edwin, that sounds like the perfect solution!

    • Booth
      #65
      Booth commented
      Editing a comment
      Yes that does sound good Edwin. I think it should be optional to set how many replies are included on the news article though

      Can't wait for all this to appear though. Can't come soon enough.
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  • MySaltyReef
    confused
    by MySaltyReef
    hey guys i am busy playing around with vb5 since beta2 for 5.1.0 is out and articles will soon be available in 5

    what i am not understanding the modules or what i know as widgets from vb4...
    Fri 21st Feb '14, 10:46am
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