What areas do you want to see forum software focusing more on? (poll)

What areas do you want to see forum software focusing more on?

  • Mobile Apps

    Votes: 7 50.0%
  • Responsive Designs

    Votes: 3 21.4%
  • Security

    Votes: 4 28.6%
  • Performance

    Votes: 4 28.6%
  • Privacy

    Votes: 2 14.3%
  • Customisability

    Votes: 2 14.3%
  • Real-time Content

    Votes: 2 14.3%
  • Media Handling / Galleries

    Votes: 6 42.9%
  • Anti-spam

    Votes: 4 28.6%
  • Moderation Tools

    Votes: 2 14.3%
  • Usability / UX

    Votes: 5 35.7%
  • Converters (importers / exporters)

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Third Party Integration

    Votes: 2 14.3%
  • Plugins / Extendability

    Votes: 4 28.6%
  • Search

    Votes: 2 14.3%

  • Total voters
    14
  • Thread starter
  • Moderator
  • #1

MagicalAzareal

Magical Developer
Joined
Apr 25, 2019
Messages
549
I am very curious what your thoughts on this are, so I'm running a little poll.

Please elaborate on details below (or anything you feel is important but which isn't captured by the options in the poll).
 

sbjsbj

Fan
Joined
Feb 9, 2015
Messages
600
You should add "other" to the list.

For me:

-Mobile Apps (in future)
-Third Party Integration (Google Systems like Google Calendar, Facebook Groups, Backblaze/AS3 integration)
-Other (Custom fields, content importers like importing an excel sheet as threads/posts)

I want more focus on content. Today everyone is on a smartphone and everyone is leeching. Which means nobody invests time to post something. Which means we as admins have to publish content to be relevant.

So I want and need tools for content, which makes my life easier and which allows us to have content no other sites have.
Imagine how it would be if the forum system could turn my excel table into a html page and display it there. Or like import my word document and each page would be published as an article. I need automated systems like that to have fresh daily content. It takes too much time to do everything manually.
I want a native wiki, I want keyword management. If our forums are meant to be in a niche, then the expert information is on our boards. So why should we let Wikipedia have all the visitors? We can offer better stuff, if only we could have a system for that.

I want a better categorizing, like enhanced custom fields with filters and such. I want more focus on pages so I can build special stuff.

So everything around content.
 

LeadCrow

Apocalypse Admin
Joined
Jun 29, 2008
Messages
6,495
One aspect I'd like reworked in general is the very concept of polls.

In almost all forumware, polls are only an addition to a topic with very limited options, rather than their own content type that can be created, pinned, shared separately from any discussion or associated to multiple ongoing discussions. They're condemned to sink alongside the topics they're associated with even if the poll subject itself is still relevant. Presentation of choices and results is also very poor.
 

Joel R

Fan
Joined
Nov 24, 2013
Messages
773
I want more focus on content. Today everyone is on a smartphone and everyone is leeching. Which means nobody invests time to post something. Which means we as admins have to publish content to be relevant.

So I want and need tools for content, which makes my life easier and which allows us to have content no other sites have.
Imagine how it would be if the forum system could turn my excel table into a html page and display it there. Or like import my word document and each page would be published as an article. I need automated systems like that to have fresh daily content. It takes too much time to do everything manually.
I want a native wiki, I want keyword management. If our forums are meant to be in a niche, then the expert information is on our boards. So why should we let Wikipedia have all the visitors? We can offer better stuff, if only we could have a system for that.

I want a better categorizing, like enhanced custom fields with filters and such. I want more focus on pages so I can build special stuff.
Have you ... and this is a genuine question ... evaluated Invision Community?

It offers the Pages app, which is - and I cannot stress this enough - the secret weapon of communities who want to build content hubs. It's confusing and overwhelming at first, because you can literally build databases of records for anything you want, with custom records, custom filters, custom templates, custom everything! On the IPS website, they use that one app to power their company blog, their release notes, their dev section, and their help guides. You obviously won't get this out-of-the-box, but if you're a community webmaster who has revenue, then these are all doable.

2020-02-11-21-51-invisioncommunity.com (1).png

2020-02-11-21-51-invisioncommunity.com.png

2020-02-11-21-52-invisioncommunity.com.png
All of these sections are built with Pages app
 

Joel R

Fan
Joined
Nov 24, 2013
Messages
773
To go to the original question, in the immediate short term:

1. More Integration -- You're going to see more interopability through either built-in integration or RESTful architecture. Organizations and enterprises are going to want their community to be able to 'communicate' with their other digital properties and membership systems.
2. More Mobile -- Mobile will continue to be not just a consideration, but the primary consideration when designing communities of the future.

My personal hope is that community software take the leap in the intermediate term to:

1. Integration with machine learning / cloud-based AI -- Cloud-based machine learning is now available through systems like AWS, which means the processing and computation doesn't happen on the server. This offers the potential for best-in-class communities to stay on the leading edge of personalization and customization. I genuinely believe the next big bifurcation in communities will be split along the lines of those who can offer personalized experiences versus those that can't.
2. Rich media -- Audio, short form video stories, long form video, whatever. Anyone can record news breaking stories on their personal smartphone, which means everyone has a rich-media story to upload, to share, and to celebrate. The founder of Instagram had a beautiful quote that went something like: humans started by communicating with pictures, with hieroglyphics drawn in the sand and on rock walls. We didnt know how to pass those pictures on, so we had to invent text as a replacement. We've now come full circle, where technology has allowed to capture and share pictures, which has always been the most natural form of human communication.

And just for fun:

1. Smartwatches, shoes, home speakers, and smart underwear -- The Internet of Things is coming (maybe not smart underwear ... yet!). I use my smartwatch for updates as much as I do my smartphone since it's so much more convenient to wrist flip. And just as smartphones required a massive rethinking in design, smartwatches will demand a similar rethinking.
2. Language auto-fill -- It's already available in things like Gmail, where it suggests recommended replies or completes sentences. Pretty soon we won't even need to type to each other. Our forums will just be our AI bots talking to each other on our behalf :D
 

zappaDPJ

Administrator
Joined
Aug 26, 2010
Messages
7,045
I voted without posting for what so far appear to be the most popular areas, mobile, media and UI. It's encouraging to know that forum owners are generally on the same page. However I also voted for search, the only vote so far. I seem to be alone in thinking that content search and search preferences are powerful tools so tomorrow I'm going to turn off Google etc. then you'll all be sorry :p
 

overcast

Adherent
Joined
Mar 17, 2019
Messages
371
Premium membership systems inside the forums are much needed feature. I kind of loved Flarum but they seem to not have this system. Only IPS, VB and Xenforo has it unfortunately.
 

sbjsbj

Fan
Joined
Feb 9, 2015
Messages
600
Have you ... and this is a genuine question ... evaluated Invision Community?
Not a decade ago, no. And not 5-6 years ago. And not until 2 years ago.

When I decided to go with XF, I believe most of the stuff what IPS offers wasn't there yet. So I didn't have to consider IPS.

Now for couple of years IPS made really good feature updates and I particularly envy the pages system. That is one thing I wish it was developed in XF (and of course not superficially but deep). But it is also too late for me to switch over because I invested too much time and money into custom stuff for XF. So even if I wanted, I couldn't switch. But right now I still see XF as the better option anyway, so I don't have to seriously think it over. Just, IPS announced apps and day by day it adds to the pile of things I wish I had and maybe in future I can evalute my options again.
 

sbjsbj

Fan
Joined
Feb 9, 2015
Messages
600
However I also voted for search, the only vote so far. I seem to be alone in thinking that content search and search preferences are powerful tools so tomorrow
You are not alone. Filtering (or searching) is actually the key thing forums didn't care for 20 years now. We need way better features to to process content in a good way which then can be found better.

Imagine threads. Thousands of threads with thousands of posts. Valuable, very good information about stuff are burried between posts. We need a better way to process these valueable posts and categorize and display them. This is what we can offer what the other big sites cannot do, IF actually forum softwares offered such solutions. We need innovation in this matter and searching (filtering, categorizing, taggin) is THE key role imo.
 
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