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MESSAGE BOARD REPLACEMENT

Posted: Fri Dec 07, 2018 11:02 am
by Admin
Hi everyone
As part of the club's commitment to significantly improving its web presence, we are considering replacing our message board with a more modern equivalent. There are a number of reasons why this is on the cards, but primarily it's about having a more reliable (this board has been down a number of times in the past year), more usable (the board generates a considerable percentage of all support requests because of it's 'clunky' interface), more attractive (easier and more transparent registration/login screens, plus better handling of image attachments), and all round easier to maintain system.

To be fair, this has been on the cards for a few years now, but has always been pushed back due to fears we'd lose people in the process of change. That is still possible, but putting plasters on our existing board is becoming a game of diminishing returns, and I'm hoping I've got an idea to minimise disruption. The theory would be that your existing username and password would still work on the new replacement board, because I'd copy over all existing account details. The old board (this one) would still exist, but purely as a 'read only' resource just for reference to the thousands of useful threads it contains. You'd not be able to post comments on those old threads, but you'd obviously be able to 'reference' them in a thread on the new board.

So, over to you. I'll make this post appear across all forums so everyone gets a chance to see it. As well as leaving your vote, I'd be very interested in any comments you have (well, mostly :roll: ). I have a product in mind, but any recommendations will be well received too.

Re: MESSAGE BOARD REPLACEMENT

Posted: Fri Dec 07, 2018 11:12 am
by Ian Jones
Hello

As a relatively new member I think the message board works pretty well. I sometimes find the "Search" function a bit difficult to use but get there eventually. Only you really know how patched and difficult to maintain the current board is. If you believe a new platform would be better for you and at least as good for us, go for it. Your proposal sounds good to me. Access to the resource that the existing board is is very important, but your proposal to make it read only would be fine, providing you can maintain it.

Regards and thanks

Ian

Re: MESSAGE BOARD REPLACEMENT

Posted: Fri Dec 07, 2018 12:15 pm
by les
I've not got any real issues with replacement, however I'm aware that problems inevitably foiiow when thing are altered.

Re: MESSAGE BOARD REPLACEMENT

Posted: Fri Dec 07, 2018 12:33 pm
by mogbob
Mike , it sounds like a good idea to me.
Non techie Bob

Re: MESSAGE BOARD REPLACEMENT

Posted: Fri Dec 07, 2018 6:52 pm
by KeithL
Mike,

I think the message board could do with a revamp as there have been issues of late but having worked in IT most my life I appreciate that such a swap is much easier said than done and will only cause you more grief in the short term. If you're up for the challenge then go for it.

Keith

Re: MESSAGE BOARD REPLACEMENT

Posted: Fri Dec 07, 2018 7:46 pm
by win
Hi Mike
I know very little about the discussions regarding the forum and how it works, but I get immense pleasure and knowledge whilst reading it.

Regarding a new one, I trust your judgment, please go for it.

Kind regards Win

Re: MESSAGE BOARD REPLACEMENT

Posted: Fri Dec 07, 2018 9:35 pm
by BrianHawley
To replace it with something better would be great. Features like automatically resizing uploaded images that are too big would be fantastic.

But I would NOT want a replacement that caused us to lose historic posts. There is a treasure trove of information here going back many years. If that were the case, I would say stick with the current board. It’s not THAT bad.

Re: MESSAGE BOARD REPLACEMENT

Posted: Sat Dec 08, 2018 10:25 am
by callyspoy
Whatever works for the bods managing really.

I do most of my post searching via google and this messageboard is fab for quickly wanting information if you're stuck outside struggling with something as most things have been asked before.

As long as the new page still has a decent search, it should be fine 👌

Re: MESSAGE BOARD REPLACEMENT

Posted: Sat Dec 08, 2018 3:21 pm
by Propshaft
I am all in favour especially if I would then be able to post pictures from my I pad like I used to be able to

Re: MESSAGE BOARD REPLACEMENT

Posted: Sat Dec 08, 2018 4:31 pm
by geoberni
BrianHawley wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 9:35 pm
To replace it with something better would be great. Features like automatically resizing uploaded images that are too big would be fantastic.

But I would NOT want a replacement that caused us to lose historic posts. There is a treasure trove of information here going back many years. If that were the case, I would say stick with the current board. It’s not THAT bad.
I understand your feelings Brian, but as I understand the problem, the board is creaking at the seams partially due to well meaning but amateur changes made in the distant past, and at some point in the near future (whenever that is), it's simply going to collapse because it is unsupportable and the very thing you fear, the loss of old data, will inevitably happen.

There's already some very strange occurrences in the topic history, possibly because of things done by past administrators or other back room types. I find it incredible that this Board is supported by a company we pay for.....

Just today I looked at this recent topic and none of the images are displaying...Why? Who the heck knows, it's just another Gremlin....
viewtopic.php?f=8&t=69517.
(Edited to add that some 23 hours later, on Sunday afternoon, the images are displaying fine - so just another foible of this creaking Bulletin Board)

I've been a member of a H&S Forum/Message/Bulletin Board for almost 10 years, the board itself was started some 15 years ago.
It's been through updates and changes over the years, we've never lost historic data and it's all run by 1 person, with a team of volunteer moderators (declaration of interest, I'm a Mod there).

The statistics are quite similar (except for total membership)
Total posts 328034 • Total topics 41344 • Total members 10066
Whereas the numbers here are:
Total posts 470519 • Total topics 41718 • Total members 21385

I get a feeling that this board is of a similar age and although it has a higher membership, I suspect there are many more fleeting visitors who just signed up for one or two questions, since double the membership is not reflected in double the topics.

Re: MESSAGE BOARD REPLACEMENT

Posted: Thu Jan 17, 2019 4:33 pm
by Admin
I've deleted some irrelevant posts from this thread today. If you wish to make any representations about that, please feel free to do so.

Re: MESSAGE BOARD REPLACEMENT

Posted: Thu Jan 17, 2019 5:12 pm
by les
That’s a relief.

Re: MESSAGE BOARD REPLACEMENT

Posted: Sat Feb 02, 2019 10:43 am
by IslipMinor
Mike,

If/when the Message Board is changed, PLEASE, PLEASE make sure that you include the function that automatically saves a draft of a new posting being constructed.

I just finished a posting, which included a URL link to an eBay listing, and before uploading the post tested the link which worked fine, but trying to get back to the Message Board lost the complete post. Very aggravating indeed!

Re: MESSAGE BOARD REPLACEMENT

Posted: Tue Feb 05, 2019 7:01 am
by ndevans
Being a member of another board that has just gone through a wholesale replacement, I'd thoroughly recommend a newer system, with all the improvements you can get.
It's been a painful process, and some inevitably don't like it, but mostly it's just a case of engaging with the new features and getting used to it.

Re: MESSAGE BOARD REPLACEMENT

Posted: Tue Feb 05, 2019 9:30 am
by BrianHawley
It looks as if a new board will become inevitable at some point and we will just have to bite the bullet.

What would be nice would be if the old board could be preserved as a separate read-only archive. This would preserve the wisdom of the years in searchable form and links to old posts could be made from the new board. Technically feasible but perhaps not economically?

Re: MESSAGE BOARD REPLACEMENT

Posted: Tue Feb 05, 2019 9:55 am
by ndevans
Eventually, you need to replace it lock stock and barrel, to fix security flaws. The board I am talking about had several hacking attacks recently, resulting in it being down a lot.

Re: MESSAGE BOARD REPLACEMENT

Posted: Tue Feb 05, 2019 10:30 am
by Mark Wilson
I second BrianHawley's suggestion of preserving the old board as a read-only archive. I fully accept the need to upgrade the current board for functionality and security reasons, but 17 years worth of collective experience is beyond price, and needs to be safeguarded like the crown jewels!

Re: MESSAGE BOARD REPLACEMENT

Posted: Tue May 07, 2019 2:54 pm
by overider
I’m defiantly in favour of an update. This message board is well passed is sell by date. As long as people can still reference the old info as you have said I can’t see why we cannot move forward and have a nice shiny new modern easy to use new message board. (Always look forward never look back) :D :D :D :D

Re: MESSAGE BOARD REPLACEMENT

Posted: Tue May 07, 2019 3:58 pm
by philthehill
It should be noted that not all modern web sites are easy to use.
By all means upgrade but take care with what is upgraded.
I agree that the old web site should be retained even if read only.

Re: MESSAGE BOARD REPLACEMENT

Posted: Tue May 07, 2019 4:18 pm
by myoldjalopy
overider wrote:
Tue May 07, 2019 2:54 pm
(Always look forward never look back) :D :D :D :D
No rear view mirror in your car then? :o :lol: