It's been another busy week of building the new Stormtrack. We are pleased with the test database import and are now taking time to populate static content, some of which is outlined below. Also outlined here are a few features of the site I thought you might want to know about:
- Xenforo: This forum platform is the up and comer. We tested the later versions of vB, as well as several others, and chose XF. Xenforo is consistently evolving, extremely stable, and has many 3rd party options.
- Social: The forum will now allow you to connect your Facebook, Twitter, or Google accounts. This makes sharing easier and also brings in information for your profile (if you wish). Each page has sharing capability all the way down to a single post within a thread.
- Integrated social: You may now tag other members as you would on Facebook or Twitter with the '@' sign and their name. We have also integrated #Hashtags to make searching for common topics or brands even easier.
- Static content: The ENTIRE original Stormtrack magazine collection has been obtained, PDF'd and then parsed by volume and issue. This is a lot more content than we have on the current site.
- Static Content (Addt'l): In the form of a wiki, past chase dates will now be searchable and edited by members. These will include links to your chase accounts, images, and background on the chase day. Also being developed is a "who's who" in the chase community list. Answer as many questions as you like HERE and submit to Danny ASAP. Quality, unique forecast links? Yeah, we've got that for you too. A few other cool static pages are in the works.
- Chat: We have a chatroom now that is completely integrated into the forum. The chat will display links automatically to new posts in the forum as they are made. Posting of images, different text colors, etc are similar to the current ST chat.
- Photo Contest: Finally members can showcase their work and get feedback, votes, shares, etc.
- Like/Dislike: If you like a post in the new ST, you can give it a thumbs up. With each thumbs-up, the original poster receives a reputation point. Dislike a post? Instead of throttling that person in the thread, simply give them a thumbs down. This takes away a reputation point. Reputation accumulates to help the member achieve higher status within the community. The reputation system is designed to promote quality content.
- Resources: Many of the "Stickies" from the current board will be tucked nicely in this area for reference. They will be stacked in order of interest based on how many views they receive as people are looking for content.
My primary goals upon taking over the ST leadership position were to create a killer alternative platform to the current Stormtrack and rebuild membership. My secondary goal was to launch before NSCC. I firmly believe the best approach here is to nix my second goal in favor of ensuring we are in the absolute best shape for a full release at a later date. This later date will occur the weekend following NSCC.