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Thread: Improving CA.org - Please share ideas <3

  1. #1
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    Improving CA.org - Please share ideas <3

    Cleaned up this post and added the new suggestions + checked the old ones - Nemome


    Hey!

    Because the thread "CA lose its touch?" is getting kinda messy, even though there are some great ideas in there, I though that it might be a good idea to open a new thread JUST for the suggestions to improve this forum in the future.

    I'll try to edit this post from time to time that we have all the good suggestion in this one post. : )


    Suggestions:
    • getting the job site back ( Team is working to update the code - If anyone knows web coding and wants to help -> Hit up one of the persons of our team! )
    • study group/partner section - finding groups, buddies, .. to study together with
    • a new "official" chat function integrated as a link in the top bar under the banner ( "What's new" "Forum" "Chat" ) - Better chat feature. Current one looks messy and unclear. Going to ask in the team what they think.
    • new forum skin - is getting worked at. You can select it at the bottom of the site. It's still WIP, but you can get a sneak preview there!
    • new badge-system - is getting worked on!
    • Adding a WIKI to look up informations in a clean way
    • bundled PDF system to get to people's portofolio, ...
    • Art feed - Whenever an artist you've subscribed to posts a new image you see it in a little box. Like twitter with images only. When you click on the image it goes to wherever it was posted.
    • Ian's design mock-up: CLICK


    Suggestions that are added by now:
    • showing the "... of the week" winners in a banner on the top --- Challanges themselves are added
    • cleaning the forum from old stuff and spam ( BlackSpot is already doing this, thanks! ) --- Being worked on 24/7
    • more participation from the founders and other professionals --- Is happening right now but this needs some time. It will come over time.
    • less flaky forum engine --- More or less done. With have a new person that helps us with everything regarding our forum software. If you notice any bugs -> report them please.
    • social sharing buttons everywhere (for linking threads, tutorials, ...)
    • streaming video library - http://www.conceptart.org/forumdisplay.php?f=249 - Populate that guys! Gogo! : )
    • Thunderdome baby! It's coming back!
    • merging not used forum sections with popular ones to give the forum a cleaner look
    • clearing the hundred of stickies


    Suggestions that got rejected:
    • manually approved registrations --- Too much work and it's hard to decide between spam and no-spam.
    • new users for the "exclusive sketchbook" section, most of the current users aren't even active anymore --- Exclusive sketchbooks aren't "advertising" the artists good enough anymore. They section will get deleted perhaps. Good and hard working artists will get featured in the banner.



    If you have any more suggestions, feel free to post them.
    Even though the team is quite busy with current work, it would still be awesome to see some of this stuff changed in the future.

    Nemome
    Last edited by Lukas Esch; March 24th, 2013 at 09:41 AM.
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  4. #2
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    Manually approved registration, on any level.

    Stop the spam, discourage hacking, improve the forums.

    nevermind about the archives, I found the link someone gave it to me lol.
    Last edited by Izi; January 28th, 2013 at 06:26 PM.
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    Attract the right sort of people.

    Seriously, though, more participation from the founders and other professionals would be always welcome.

    Also, it'd benefit from a less flaky forum engine.

    And getting the jobs site back should be a good thing.
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    I updated the list.

    A manually approved registration might me impossible. The team seems to be very busy already right now so would be kinda overkill I think. Even though the idea is quite nice!

    Arenhaus, they are working on the forum engine since the major forum update, aren't they? At least that's what I heard. BlackSpot is also doing her best to get the job site back.
    But the suggestion to have more participation from the founders and other professionals is good. But how could we do that?
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  10. #5
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    Lets face it, the majority of the people that post are in the SB, lounge or art discussion forums, and out of those 3 the majority are in the SB section.
    Other than that alot of the other sections nobody even visit, other than looking up old obscure tutorials with links that are dead.
    The whole tutorial section needs a overhaul. Maybe manley PLC can make videos for beginners that have clear drawing and painting sections that will entice users to see stages in paintings and drawings etc, rather than whoring of the VLP videos which are 10 years old, and now trying to pass them of as new information that people should pay for.
    How about making this site worthwhile again rather than whoring of the VLP videos on the Deviantart TAD section for $$$$$.
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    That's sort of the kind of thing I want to do with the tutorial section. There aren't many links to beginner stuff - they don't even have to be on this site. I'm hoping to make a start next weekend and any of you do have suggestions of which threads should be included for a beginner, I'd be grateful. There are tutorial all over the place, like Fine Arts etc. Getting rid of a lot of the stickies would declutter the place a lot. I'd like to see only a few and those can contain links to the orginal stickies if needed.

    Nemome, I don't have access to the engine room of the forum, my powers are limited, but I can nag and do. The whole site needs a bit of a rest from updates until what has been done settles in and no further problems occur. The more complicated it comes, the harder it is for the programmer to find the problem, whch is why a lot of the badges etc have disappeared - they're somewhere in the attic.

    And, please, no more drama.
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    A quick way of searching everywhere excluding the sketchbooks. (results always get cluttered)

    Social sharing buttons everywhere. That would increase the exposure of threads and the site in general.

    See what Behance has been doing. Find a way to make a user's CA profile double as a sort of porfolio (which could be also be used in the job section).

    An option to see all images of a SB in a slideshow/gallery. It would make it easier to comment on large SBs.
    "Great job guys! I love you. You're fired."

    Sketchbook! Me vs Anatomy (and other things)
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  16. #8
    thanoss Guest
    Blackspot is there no chance of something like this happening on CA? Instead of manely whoring out the VLP videos as new info on DA, isnt there a possibility to setup a separate section to the forums or part of the site that directs new users and more advanced users into a tutorials section like the way this site is setup. Instead of the shitty VLP site that outdated and nobody uses.

    I don't mean exactly like that site, and specially made videos, but more clearly defined sections, and maybe if manley plc isnt to busy whoring out tad on DA he can get people onto the case of making videos for this site if possible. I know this might be a big undertaking, but i feel its what the site needs to evolve.

    http://www.drawmixpaint.com/
    Last edited by thanoss; January 29th, 2013 at 10:25 AM.
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    Well you already grabbed my suggestion from the CA lost it's touch thread of Community activities banner showing the winners and linking to the thread. That's about all I wanted. Simple little banner you can swap out pictures easily, same kind that's on a lot of news sites, among countless others. Can't be that hard or expensive, some of these sites are cheap looking lol.

    Started messing around with CHOW, 2nd week, very fun. Imagine if more people joined it would be even funner seeing what people come up with.
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    Januz You can easily do an advanced search and mark everything except sketchbooks for the search. Otherwise you can also search on this site via google: "site:conceptart.org blableurghwhatever". This gives you most of the times way better search results cause the search engine of this forum is not the best, hehe.
    Socialsharing buttons sound nice. I added them to the list! But people can still post links into social sites, so the buttons would just be a small addition to make things easier.
    And the portfolios are already in progress if I am not mistaken. They were going to be part of CA.org 4.0, and all these functions will be implented over time.


    For the tutorial section:
    In my opinion it would currently just help if a few of the amateur tutorials that only link to another site would be deleted. There are some tutorials that were made during a few seconds and they just look amateurish and aren't help for anyone.
    I think these are the ones that should be deleted first.
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    VBulletin is a stable engine, but they were warning us for weeks on the backend about an exploit that needed a manual adjustment and a patch ASAP. If the reason CA got hacked was because no one has access to the Admin Panel to view these important news flashes, every single day, then that needs to be fixed. I catch 1-2 people attempting exploits VBulletin's staff warned us to patch, years and weeks ago.

    Vbulletin is unfortunately the best choice for a forum. Especially an art forum. It is ideal for image presentation, with its complete lack of sidebar bloat and has major customizability. uses Vbulletin as well as the now defunct GFXartist, as far as I can tell. CA is bigger, gets more traffic and thus more exploits, spam etc. Server load was a problem, which is why Jason bought us all new servers, which is why the forums are so much faster and stable.

    Manual registration takes ONE click to kill a spammer, as opposed to 5-10 clicks, and more, if there are responses from live members, so tell me again how this adds work? Granted, the person needs access to the admin panel, but these powers can be limited.

    A quick way of searching everywhere excluding the sketchbooks. (results always get cluttered)
    This cannot be fixed, use google's search within site. Tags are all we have, so tag threads.

    Social sharing buttons everywhere. That would increase the exposure of threads and the site in general.
    I second this.

    Also if you are bringing back the banner with the sketchbooks (Which makes the forum really annoying and too bulky to load on Android phones btw) please weed out people who no longer actively contribute to the forums or who no longer work for MB.
    Last edited by Izi; January 29th, 2013 at 01:19 PM.
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  23. #12
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    Izi Thanks for the informations about VBulletin. Good to know.
    Our idea was not to bring back the banner with the sketchbooks, but to bring the winners from "... of the week" into some kind of banner, so you actually get some inspiration to participate in them.

    ----------------

    I also had an idea for the tutorial section.
    How about the idea that every tutorial (new thread) has to be checked by an moderator before displaying it in the section. This way the quality of the tutorials would increase much more because not everyone would be able to post and the moderator could have a quick look if it's just a link to another tutorial website or if it is made just for this site.
    What do you guys think about this?
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    We seriously don't have new spammers joining much now - we have a lot of nice new tools for that. It's mainly clearing up the old stuff and it goes back right to the beginning. I'd like old users with zero posts to be deleted (means they can rejoin later - except spam won't) but the answer was no sadly.

    I love the banner idea for the winners too.

    There are approximately 25 new members every day. While manual registration might be possible, it's a heck of a lot to do day in, day out. Some of us mods do have lives.

    I think if some of the sections were tidied up and stickies were fewer, but with information set out in a logical way in them, buttons etc wouldn't be needed. Less clutter - this comes from someone who hates housework.
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