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Level 13 Human Shadow
Alignment: Chaotic good
Location: Earth Orbit, Preparing to Attack
Posted on September 8, 2009 at 9:09 pm

They are back!

First impression: hard to read the topic list and the room list. Too little spacing on the room list. Too cluttered looking on the topic list - especially with the background showing through. Perhaps less transparency on the alpha mask, maybe a smaller sized byline, possibly a bit more padding around the boxes?

Hey Rick: You said you built these yourself? This might be useful: http://ckeditor.com/ - combined with allowed HTML entities in PHP, should make a much nicer editing toolkit :)

An issue: the post footer links (website, etc.) should open in _blank so we don't navigate out of the forums. In fact...all links should probably be auto updated to do that within posts also.

Level 13 Extraplanar Programmer
Alignment: Chaotic good
Location: Toronto
Posted on September 8, 2009 at 9:43 pm

Thanks for the feedback! If anybody else has any constructive criticism, I'll go through the list when I get around to rolling version 4.0.1 4.0.2 of the site.

In case it's not obvious, the forums aren't quite done yet. On my short-list of things to add is:

* Search (by text or by user)
* Unread message tracking
* Private messaging
* Image uploading (I already have this implemented, but currently only us admins can use it)

However, I need to get back to helping Rob with Hegemony, so I'm probably not going to get around to any of that until after Hegemony launches.

I'm aware of CKEditor and its ilk, and I'd definitely like to have something like that eventually. It's all a matter of finding one that I like (follows web standards, relatively lightweight, customizable, doesn't ruin my browser's built-in spell-checker) and implementing it; but of course, that takes time.

Level 13 Human Shadow
Alignment: Chaotic good
Location: Earth Orbit, Preparing to Attack
Posted on September 8, 2009 at 9:55 pm

Always glad to critique! :)

A few more features for your wishlist:
- Email notifications? (and preferences for) [personally, I have no use for email notifications, but some people like them]
- Emoticons
- Perhaps page length preferences?
- More XP for me!
(oh wait, that last isn't your wishlist, it is mine :D)

What are the limits on allowed HTML?

Also, I see you use the <q> tag for quotes - as I recall, IE6 and IE7 don't support that (can we just ban those browsers!? please! from the world that is!)

Level 13 Extraplanar Programmer
Alignment: Chaotic good
Location: Toronto
Posted on September 8, 2009 at 11:02 pm

- Email notifications? (and preferences for) [personally, I have no use for email notifications, but some people like them]
- Emoticons
- Perhaps page length preferences?

Yeah, those are all good ideas.

- More XP for me!
(oh wait, that last isn't your wishlist, it is mine :D)

You already have fairly good XP >:)

What are the limits on allowed HTML?
Allowed tags: i, em, b, strong, del, ins, q, code, img, a

The img tag requires href (must start with http) and alt attributes (will be blank if you don't supply one), and may have a class of one of the following: left, right, centre, center. The img tag must also be self-closing.

The a tag requires an href (must start with http or mailto), and may optionally have an onclick value of "return showLightboxSingle(this)", which, assuming the href points to an image, will open that image in a lightbox, like this.

Named HTML entities are allowed, so you're allowed to do neat things like this: †©™ Numbered entities are not allowed.

Any tag you forget to close will be automatically closed, so you don't need to worry about breaking the forums >:)

If you see any XSS attack vectors that I've missed, be sure to let me know >:)

Also, I see you use the <q> tag for quotes - as I recall, IE6 and IE7 don't support that (can we just ban those browsers!? please! from the world that is!)
The problem with the q tag in IE6 and IE7 is that they don't automatically add quotation marks, but that's fine by me, because I'm removing them for all the other browsers anyway. And I'd love to ban IE6, but unfortunately, 30% of our users still use it :( By this time next year, I expect that number to be much lower, thanks to YouTube.

The real reason I'm using q instead of blockquote is because q is an inline element, and leaving block-level elements out of the equation made my XML sanitizer easier to write.

Level 13 Human Shadow
Alignment: Chaotic good
Location: Earth Orbit, Preparing to Attack
Posted on September 9, 2009 at 5:38 pm

1. Just curious: why are numbered HTML entities not allowed? As someone that has easy unicode lookup, hex coded HTML entities are great!

For instance, if you want to do Biohazard Sign. Typing &#x2623; is so easy!

2. I seem to find myself often auto-logged out. While this is great for shopping carts and the ilk, it is a pain for forums :) - wonder if there is a way to balance the two-in-one login better (maybe a 2nd password request on purchase?).

3. Why do you use ins / del for u / strike, yet allow b / i instead of forcing strong / em? As ins / del have different syntactic meanings than "underline" and "strike" I'm not quite sure I follow the logic. Still haven't quite figured out why HTML 4 "depreciates" u / b / i in favor of strong / em / span + style, since u / b / i is so much easier to write. The idea that you should not specify the styling in HTML (u / b / i) and instead leave font decoration controls to the browser (strong / em) sort of flies in the face of any creative developer, the entire idea behind CSS, "less typing is better", and "less bytes in a file is less server load." Never have understood why they want to depreciate them. :)


Hmm, interesting there have been 2 people posting to the new forums: myself and KV (who I notified yesterday evening that the forums were back). Hmmm... :)

Level 13 Extraplanar Programmer
Alignment: Chaotic good
Location: Toronto
Posted on September 9, 2009 at 6:58 pm

1. Just curious: why are numbered HTML entities not allowed? As someone that has easy unicode lookup, hex coded HTML entities are great!
Because I'm worried about people using them for cross-site scripting attacks.

2. I seem to find myself often auto-logged out. While this is great for shopping carts and the ilk, it is a pain for forums :) - wonder if there is a way to balance the two-in-one login better (maybe a 2nd password request on purchase?).
The "remember me" feature should remember you for six months, but I think I've introduced a bug when I reworked the way the login works for forums.

3. Why do you use ins / del for u / strike, yet allow b / i instead of forcing strong / em?
i and b aren't actually deprecated, they're just discouraged. If you use s, strike, or u, on the other hand, the page won't validate.

The em and strong tags should not be used as blind replacements for the i and b tags, but should be used for a subset of the things we used to use i and b for in the past. The rest of the things should be done with CSS (or different tags, like cite or var).

However, most forum users aren't familiar with these subtleties, so when they want to reference The Oxford Guide to Style, they don't care that the tag with the proper semantics is cite and not em, all they know is that they want the name of the book to be in italics.

So that's why I allow the i and b tags, because I would rather users not use semantics, than use the wrong semantics.

I do admit, though, that using ins for underline bothers me, because most of the time it will be using the wrong semantics, but the only workaround would be to allow my XML sanitizer to replace a u tag with a <span class='underline'> tag.

I'm not sure why the W3C deprecated u and not i or b.

Level 13 Human Shadow
Alignment: Chaotic good
Location: Earth Orbit, Preparing to Attack
Posted on September 12, 2009 at 11:03 pm

Tossed you an email with some cookie and site load issues - enjoy! :)

Level 13 Human Shadow
Alignment: Chaotic good
Location: Earth Orbit, Preparing to Attack
Posted on September 14, 2009 at 8:19 am

Ok, here is an issue I am having. I sit on a particular forum post. I occasionally hit reload (several hours apart). 75% of the time the page reloads. The other 25% of the time I get Invalid Forum ID or Invalid Topic ID with the path /topic/?id=... or /forum/?id=... dropping the query string part off the end on reload (the browser isn't doing it; some redirect is doing it in the forum software), leaving it as /topic/ or /forum/, which of course is invalid.

Level 13 Human Shadow
Alignment: Chaotic good
Location: Earth Orbit, Preparing to Attack
Posted on September 14, 2009 at 11:21 pm

It seems to be dropping the ids on auto-login redirect.

Level 13 Extraplanar Programmer
Alignment: Chaotic good
Location: Toronto
Posted on September 15, 2009 at 3:29 am

Okay, hopefully those (and other) bugs are fixed now. Thanks for the heads-up.

Level 13 Human
Alignment: Good
Posted on September 16, 2009 at 3:47 am

Just dropping by to say hi, and, lo and behold: nice and shiny new forums! :)

I guess that finally means good-bye, dear ultra-secret forum...

Level 13 Human Shadow
Alignment: Chaotic good
Location: Earth Orbit, Preparing to Attack
Posted on September 16, 2009 at 8:06 am

Ok...more problems Rick :)

I had one LDA cookie: login_persistent
Cookie had the content of "1"

And on loading the forums, got the "The page isn't redirecting properly" error.

On deleting the cookie, the forums worked again.

Not sure where the other LDA cookies went to, but my browser had none of them.

--

Hey Dreamer! I was noticing that...my hegemony beta tester forums have vanished :(

Level 13 Extraplanar Programmer
Alignment: Chaotic good
Location: Toronto
Posted on September 16, 2009 at 5:22 pm

I didn't bother adding a feature for secret forums; we barely used them in the last forums, and we don't really mind if our beta testers talk about the game in public. By the way if you were one of our compatibility testers, be sure to send Jim a new email if you want to be included in the beta test.

Seeing if I can reproduce that redirection problem now.

Edit: Think I found it. Thanks.

Level 13 Human Shadow
Alignment: Chaotic good
Location: Earth Orbit, Preparing to Attack
Posted on September 16, 2009 at 10:24 pm

Hey Rick - do you want me to try and find bugs with the forums? So far I've just been letting them come to me :D


--

Edit:

Ok...decided to start trying to break stuff. Nice validation on Ability Scores! Server side rules (except when trying to get around it)!

Did find one thing that didn't work to well:

http://www.longbowgames.com/?start=1.0

Use of the float gets past the is_numeric check but the page fails to load the whole layout. Same issue with the forums + floating point page numbers.


P.S. Feel free to shoot me with a Shadow in Tread Marks for finding all these bugs :D

Level 13 Extraplanar Programmer
Alignment: Chaotic good
Location: Toronto
Posted on September 17, 2009 at 1:07 am

I'm always more than happy to accept bug reports. I've just been fighting with what to do when the user's clock is wrong, which will break cookies. Think I've got it all sorted out now.

Edit: Fixed the is_numeric issues. Thanks!

Level 13 Human Shadow
Alignment: Chaotic good
Location: Earth Orbit, Preparing to Attack
Posted on September 17, 2009 at 5:53 pm

You're not alone in tracking down strange cookie/session issues. Spent two hours this morning on one. Never could replicate it.

Level 12 Human Cyb0rg tank pil0t:|@- ҉҈҉҈҉-§¹Ç--҉҈҉-
Alignment: Chaotic good
Location: Standby In Winters's North
Posted on October 19, 2009 at 7:02 pm

Hey Rick do you still have the old forums that were archived previously before the update

When i mean old forums i mean the oldest or first......

Level 13 Extraplanar Programmer
Alignment: Chaotic good
Location: Toronto
Posted on October 20, 2009 at 7:51 pm

I do, but I haven't posted them anywhere. If there's still interest, I'll make a note to return them to the site at some point.

(I see the waybackmachine utterly failed at archiving the old forums.)

Level 12 Human Cyb0rg tank pil0t:|@- ҉҈҉҈҉-§¹Ç--҉҈҉-
Alignment: Chaotic good
Location: Standby In Winters's North
Posted on November 3, 2009 at 7:05 pm

ok i hope you keep it i know i still need it

i need it for tracing important info as many wondered if there was a dx ball board editor

i found something called dx-board and dx-image

nobody knew it existed the only one who remembered anything about it was kong from tm

and the only proof of its existence was some posts on that forum

i still need it for tracing and other historical purposes not only that but the
forum has great memory's that i don't want lost........

Level 13 Human Shadow
Alignment: Chaotic good
Location: Earth Orbit, Preparing to Attack
Posted on November 4, 2009 at 7:17 am

DXImage is also used for editing the tree and sprite .img files in Tread Marks. Essentially, these files are multi-layered BMP files with metadata, a nonstandard format.

I can't endorse DXImage use for DXBall editing (LDA doesn't like that :)), but if you need it for messing with trees in Tread Marks, shoot me a message (rc_tm3@vorklift.com).

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