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Announcement

Welcome to the new Ishimaru Design website !
New host, new version and more !
More details here

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Bienvenue sur le nouveau site d'Ishimaru Design !
Nouvel hébergement, nouvelle version et encore plus !
Plus de détails ici

#1 2010-11-08 07:45:34

Ishimaru Chiaki
Geek cook
From: Somewhere in Québec
Registered: 2007-11-12
Posts: 1,444

Ishimaru 5.5 has arrived !

(note for native English : Is the "Under the hood" expression accurate for an update that isn't very visible for normal users ?)

I come to announce you the release of Ishimaru Design 5.5 on the website's side !

Changes that have been done

Even if the changes aren't very visible for normal users, the website had a major refresh in its filesystem in order to facilitate maintenance.  Here are the main changes :

  • Texts have been made external : Up to now, English and French texts were hardwritten within the website's files.  This had the disadvantage to make it harder to keep a coherence between pages.  I thus transferred ALL English and French texts into two separate files - one for English and one for French - that I just have to include on top of pages, so I can use the language variable to insert texts where I want.  This way, correcting mistakes and errors is much more easier, as the texts aren't scattered throughout dozens of files anymore.

  • Pages are now modularized : Another maintenance issue was the fact that I had to edit two files if I have to make a change inside ONE module.  For example, if I want to add an extra info about each GIMP tutorial, I had to edit the French page AND the English page and so, comes the problems of keeping coherence between pages.  By making texts external, this allowed me to separate each module into external files that I just have to insert into pages using the include() function.  This way, I now have just one file to edit if I want to change something in a module.

  • Usage of Connectix Boards' components goes further : I also took the opportunity to set up BBCode buttons and smilies for some multiline fields in admin pages in addition to the use of clean() and unclean() functions for BBCode handling in these fields.  I so don't need to use HTML anymore for a list or a link.
    In addition, I have also gone further in using CB's error handler in order to avoid multiple error message blocks by grouping them into one block or two.  Aesthetically, it's better to keep as few error blocks as possible.

  • Miscellaneous improvement and bugfixes : I also took the time to fix numerous bugs that were present in the previous version.  By discovering the "num_rows" SQL function, I could finally display a "Nothing to display" message in a context of a query that doesn't find any data.  This is more explicit, and avoids having a big "Fatal Error" message that directly breaks the site's validation.
    Improvements have been done in the HTML and the style.  The heading hierarchy has been refreshed in order to make it more coherent than the h1-h3-h1-h2-h4 hierarchy that was very messy.  By discovering the possibilities of the <button> tag, this allowed me to solve the display bugs between fake buttons (that were actually simple links) and real submit buttons in some browsers.  Error message blocks have been standardized in order to keep only two classes : .warning and .notice
    All these changes allowed me to clean up the CSS a little bit.


All these changes will allow me to think about future projects that will thus follow this new filesystem structure.

Future projects

For now, I would like to finish the bug tracker module that I began to code and for which this refresh was a prerequisite to fill before I continue its development.  Once finished, I'm considering about publishing the module's sources on Connectix Boards's officiel forum, so the community can benefit from this contribution.  For example, I think about application developers that might find practical to have an integrated bug tracker that uses the forum's core.

For a longer term, I would like to do the leap into the use of a templates system, and for this, I'm waiting for CB 1.0 to come out, as this version will allow to switch language on-the-go and that has improved functions that can be used outside the forum.  Today's update is thus only a transitional step to the use of templates.

And by the way...

A phpBB3 style is about to be finished and will be based on Ubuntu 10.04's desktop theme !  I'll submit it to validation at phpBB.com very soon.
You can see a preview on this demo forum : http://ishimaru-design.servhome.org/tests/phpBB3 (testuser + test00)

Stay tuned for more news !

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