Here is what I think

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pethol
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Here is what I think

Post by pethol » Tue May 10, 2016 11:09 pm

PhpBB has a lot of potential, but could grow much more powerful. Right now, if people want anything special done, they need to learn how to code and it is a *beep* for beginners with no coding experience to make their way around the hundreds of files to find the right place to insert code.

Why not be inspired by WP? You have plugins, which are easy to install and manage. You can install, edit and manage templates easily.
Everything that needs coding, can be accessed easily from the Admin area.

This is all I needed for people to see...
Image
Yet this took me HOURS to do. Because there was no option to ON/OFF the features I didn't want to show on the board on the board.
Like on this page I write on now, I see "

Code: Select all

BBCode is ON, [img] is ON, (flash) is OFF, [url] is ON, Smilies are ON
"... Why is it THERE? Move it away to a page called "settings" or something. Who cares about that, when they only want to participate in the community of a forum.


If I want to see statistics - I want to see them in my ACP. I don't have the need to 'show off'.
But another reason to clean up the front, is that the default front is simply - too noisy. Noise belong in the footer areas at most.
Having a WYSIWYG template editor like the WP one would definitely make life much easier for many people and make the forum more popular to use.
Having plugins function in WP style would also make things a lot easier and more fun.

I heard people saying "there are too many issues and it is too complicated" - then why are they developers? If the coders are not up for the task of actually developing, there is no reason for them to keep sitting around and drink coffee all day.
Another argument/excuse I heard is "security issues"... If WP solved the problem with security - then I bet the PhPbb dev can solve it too.
Some has said "It will require to re-code everything!"... Then DO that! Enough with the excuses - DO it!

Why not step up a bit and follow the trend of time instead of staying in the 1980's?

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david63 Online
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Re: Here is what I think

Post by david63 » Thu May 12, 2016 7:17 am

I will give you the benefit of the doubt as you are new to this board.
pethol wrote:
Tue May 10, 2016 11:09 pm
If the coders are not up for the task of actually developing, there is no reason for them to keep sitting around and drink coffee all day.
As the developers, and everyone else connected with phpBB, are volunteers who do what they can in their "spare" time what they do during their "day job" is of no concern of anyone, other than their employer.
pethol wrote:
Tue May 10, 2016 11:09 pm
Then DO that! Enough with the excuses - DO it!
Are you offering your services?
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and you do not know what you do not know!

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RMcGirr83
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Re: Here is what I think

Post by RMcGirr83 » Thu May 12, 2016 9:26 am

It is a bit unfair to compare phpBB, a strictly volunteer base of coders, to WP. Wordpress code, while open source, is contributed to by employees of other corporations that sell WordPress related products / services...such as Automattic. WP has thousands of coders participating in the development of the product, phpBB has quite a bit less than that.
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DavidIQ
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Re: Here is what I think

Post by DavidIQ » Thu May 12, 2016 12:43 pm

pethol wrote:
Tue May 10, 2016 11:09 pm
Why not be inspired by WP?
You mean like this? No thank you.
pethol wrote:
Tue May 10, 2016 11:09 pm
Why is it THERE? Move it away to a page called "settings" or something. Who cares about that, when they only want to participate in the community of a forum.
It's pretty much always been there and nobody has complained about it? It's a single line in the template file anyways if it bothers you that much, not something that would require ample developer skills nor hours of work. Also it's a style change so making a change like that in WordPress would have required some knowledge of at least HTML/CSS to implement. It would be like wanting to remove the "Commenting is disabled" tag, which you can't really do without editing the WordPress theme.
pethol wrote:
Tue May 10, 2016 11:09 pm
Having a WYSIWYG template editor like the WP one would definitely make life much easier for many people and make the forum more popular to use.
Having plugins function in WP style would also make things a lot easier and more fun.

I heard people saying "there are too many issues and it is too complicated" - then why are they developers? If the coders are not up for the task of actually developing, there is no reason for them to keep sitting around and drink coffee all day.
Another argument/excuse I heard is "security issues"... If WP solved the problem with security - then I bet the PhPbb dev can solve it too.
Some has said "It will require to re-code everything!"... Then DO that! Enough with the excuses - DO it!
WordPress didn't "solve" anything. Their commenting system, the publicly facing part that would be comparable to where the WYSIWYG editor would be in phpBB, doesn't actually implement a WYSIWYG editor (at least not by default). If that's the way to "solve" any security issues with a WYSIWYG editor then we're way ahead of them. ;)

As far as plugins go we have extensions, which is pretty much the same thing. We don't currently have a way to directly download them from something like a repository within the admin panel but that should change sometime in the future. The only drawback there is that the admin has to upload the extension package via FTP instead. That is really the only major difference between the WP plugin system and the phpBB extensions system.
Image

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Louis7777
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Re: Here is what I think

Post by Louis7777 » Thu May 12, 2016 2:15 pm

pethol wrote:
Tue May 10, 2016 11:09 pm
If I want to see statistics - I want to see them in my ACP. I don't have the need to 'show off'.
I want to be able to see how big is the community in which I am participating and how many are its active users.

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Arty
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Re: Here is what I think

Post by Arty » Thu May 12, 2016 3:12 pm

WP is very user friendly, that's without a doubt. Managing plugins and themes from control panel is very convenient.

But its also has hundred of not thousand times more interest from developers and users. Forum is a niche software. Every website has some pages, which can be served by WP or other CMS, but only small minority of websites have forums.

Because of that there are way fewer developers interested in working with forums. There are almost no companies interested in working with forums - they'd rather work with WP because that's what their customers use, whenever someone asks for forum they'd rather take random free style, change it a bit and be done with it. Those few developers that are interested in phpBB are all volunteers without much free time.

In recent years situation became even worse because of all social networks. Everyone has a website, but when it comes to discussing things its easier to do that on social media. Because of that interest in forums is going down.

Then there is complexity issue. Forum is much more complex than typical WP website. WP websites serve static pages.

Taking all those factors into accounts its no wonder that forum development is going slowly. WP has hundreds of active developers, some are paid to work. phpBB has very few developers, all are volunteers working on their free time.
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Louis7777
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Re: Here is what I think

Post by Louis7777 » Thu May 12, 2016 7:02 pm

Arty wrote:
Thu May 12, 2016 3:12 pm
[...]
Because of that interest in forums is going down.
[...]
I believe that could easily change.

Also - call me crazy - I believe that phpBB could compete with WordPress.

Because after all it's not so different. Because content is king. Because customers would like to have social features.

And creating and managing lots of content and operating a social network is so much easier and powerful with forum software. That's why. And there are only so many good & free forum platforms.

So someone who wants to have a website with pages and a blog could do it with phpBB instead of WordPress.
So someone who wants to have a website with pages and a blog and social features could do it BETTER with phpBB instead of WordPress.

How?

Only if phpBB could match those must-have features of WordPress and some of Facebook's features that the average user has got used to and expects them as if they are part of the Web itself. Oh, and of course, a way to login using social network accounts.

So before anyone says blah blah blah phpBB is not CMS blah blah blah, please read on.

Why would the developer choose WordPress over phpBB for his customer?

His customer typically wants multilingual pages, a blog, a contact form and maybe a social network.

Social network means customizable profiles, adding friends, notifications, private messaging, @mentions, status updates and comments, lightboxes, live search etc. (what else can you think of?)

phpBB has:
- Plugins aka Extensions

- Child themes

- Notifications system. And can be ajaxified with an extension I guess. For WordPress you'd need a plugin such as "BuddyPress" and a theme that can support it.

- Private messaging. Well... it should really have its own separate interface like Facebook's inbox.

- Lightbox extensions. Some very good ones.

- Portal extension for homepage or custom pages.

- Login using social network accounts.

- Friends / Foes (blocked)

- Everything that comes with phpBB can be translated out of the box and it's easy enough to add a language switcher. For WordPress you'd need a plugin such as "Polylang".

- Customizable profiles? One can override the template in a child theme and make it fancy with the help of custom profile fields. Better than nothing. It could suffice for most needs, but let's hope for more social extensions.

- A contact form in the core. For WordPress you'd need a plugin such as "Contact 7". Sure, phpBB's contact form has room for improvements through extensions (e.g. Contact Admin Plus), but the default one will suffice for most needs... if there's going to be a #$%&!@ CAPTCHA!

- A blog? A forum can be styled to look like one. The posts are comment-ready. Whenever phpBB gets a new theme (hopefully with v3.3) we'll see good things. But right now it's kind of a fuss to make new styles and maybe that's why there aren't that many released. Anyway, there can also be extensions to provide the full experience, like this one that was almost released - the Ultimate Blog.

- An official Pages extension. A very good one. Just add... multilingual support?


What are we missing? I think mainly these features:


- @mentions

- Live search

- Separate private messaging interface

- Multilingual support for the official Pages extension

- WYSIWYG editor (hopefully it will be ready for 3.3)

- Featured images. Images are everything as far as looks are concerned. There should be a way that a page or post can be associated with an image (the first attachment that meets certain size criteria?) so that extensions such as featured content sliders can display images for posts. Also, a blog or news page extension without images looks ugly. We don't need media library functionality - just a way to associate posts with their images in order to provide for beautiful extensions.

- CAPTCHA for the contact form



Share thoughts. :geek:

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neufke
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Re: Here is what I think

Post by neufke » Thu May 12, 2016 8:09 pm

@pethol: i think you are kind of rude but then again, frustration, i get it. You are comparing apples and pears, WP with phpBB and there is no comparison nor will there ever be for so many reasons, some have already been mentioned. The problem you had could have been solved easily in 1 minute if you had asked... nicely... each and every developer, extention writer, style writer, team member (and i left a few out i bet) is doing this in his or her spare free time... WP is a commercial business. They are getting paid and WP wishes their code was as bug-free as phpBB's

Now, you have a few options, start to learn and code yourself (and yes, we all know that it is hard, most of us went to school to learn to code for years and years), you can ask someone for help nicely and i bet someone will help you when they have the time... or you can install wp... but i think they don't have such a nice forum plugin... :)

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trilo
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Re: Here is what I think

Post by trilo » Fri May 13, 2016 2:58 am

@pethol - if you're looking for something that's WP-inspired, then why not just use a WP forum plugin?

As others have pointed out, PHPBB is an open source platform, created by volunteers who give generously of their free time (thanks everyone). The learning curve may be steeper than you'd get with something candy-coated, but those who take the time to learn and understand the platform have a lot of functionality and flexibility available to them.

Rhino.Freak
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Re: Here is what I think

Post by Rhino.Freak » Fri May 13, 2016 6:04 pm

Tl;Dr yes there is scope for improvement in terms of making forums user friendly.
No, it will not happen as soon as you'd expect. We need a driving force other than pure motivation which is rather unstable.

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