Beta 6 Progress Report
The new template is still in the garage being fixed, but that hasn’t stopped us from adding some extra features to surprise everyone with when we release this sucker. Right now I have completed the very basic task of laying out the site and aligning most of the big items where they need to be on the main page. I spent a little over 6 hours today doing this, and it really wore me out. I have very little CSS knowledge, which slowed me down when I first started, but I progressed pretty quickly and I’m now picking up momentum. My girlfriend is a graphic designer and whipped up some simple icons to use for the site. I will be releasing these icons, and the rest of the images used in the new template, in a Photoshop file when I release Beta 6.
Speaking of release dates…
Everyone has been asking “when will Beta 6 be released”? It’s al little to early to really give an accurate date since errors tend to be discovered along the way, but I think right now I will set a target date of February 14, 2006. That’s six days from today! May the countdown begin.
What to expect from Beta 6
Not only will you get a brand new Web 2.0, stylish, not Digg-like template, but you will also see some new features! Some new features to be included with Beta 6 are:
We have 2 new features that won’t be mentioned until the release of Pligg Beta 6 because they are small, but exciting items that are still in development. The podcast mod was first mentioned a while back, but it was never included with standard Pligg installations. There are some other features that are still in development that I am not going to mention because they might not be ready in time for the release. Two of the items that may come in a slightly later release of Pligg will be the ability to ping weblogs when submitting stories and threaded comments.
Beta 6 Template To-Do List
I would appreciate some help with the vote bar CSS. If anyone wants to take that on as their own little project let me know. It’s taking me longer than I expected to get the basic layout finished. I spent 6 hours today getting the larger areas arranged and decided to call it a night after finishing that. Here’s what I still have to do:
- Vote/Title bar
- Comment, trackback, tag icons
- Navigation icons/positioning
- User Panel fixes
- Footer placement
- Navbar Placement top center
- Custom Links
- Test in IE/Opera
- Test in different dimensions
I have noticed that Opera and IE place the search bar slightly off. IE also puts a space between the google corner images and is kicking the right sidebar down to the bottom. The sidebar could probably be fixed just by shrinking the left panel width a bit.
The “User Panel” buttons need custom background images for Pligg for stories and Submit news (pretty simple). The User Panel buttons also needs to be moved to the left against the side.
The entire middle section has yet to be worked on, but I’m very worried about the Vote bar.
I would like to add a “Links” panel below the User Panel to place your custom links in. There you could put links to your forum, blog, homepage, whatever. This could easily be added without much effort. I would have accomplished this today if I had thought of it earlier.
I noticed today that we set a new record for visitors on at the same time on the Pligg Forum. We hit a high of 27 users online at the same time today, I believe the previous record was 24 users that came during the Digg CSS controversy a few weeks back. I was curious why the site had suddenly became so popular and headed over to alexa.com to see if the popularity had increased our number at all. It turns out that our number has really soard from somewhere around 114,000 to 45,149 (lower is better). I was quite stunned to see that Pligg had not only broken onto the top 100,000 sites on the alexa list, but it also broke the top 50,000 sites. This is pretty amazing considering how I have tried not to promote Pligg too much so early on in development.