Published on August 14th, 2012 by Boone Gorges
Published on August 14th, 2012 by Boone Gorges
When we were beginning development on BuddyPress 1.6, we had the idea of building a new child theme for BuddyPress Default – something that would show off some of BP’s coolest features by highlighting a single of BP’s several components. The BuddyPress core team put out a call for community contributors to take the lead on this new theme, and we soon had some of the best and brightest theme developers in the BP world working on the project. Today, we’re thrilled to announce the availability of the new theme, Status. You can download it today from its home at Github: status.zip. (It’ll be available in the wordpress.org theme repository soon.)
What follows is a short introduction to Status – why it was built, what it does, and how you can get involved – written by the Status team.
Starting something social
Status started out life thanks to this ticket, where it was suggested to build a new theme alongside of BuddyPress 1.6, which would – in @djpaul’s words – “flex some muscle”. Several months of work and a fair few people later, we have today’s release announcement.
After several initial chats, it was decided that ’Status’ - as it obviously had to be named - would be an ‘activity focused’ theme, along the lines of Twitter. The aim was to show BuddyPress in a more specific guise, to demonstrate how BuddyPress can work well by focusing on just one of its several features. A secondary goal was to re-factor the BuddyPress templates with leaner code, focusing on HTML5 as much as possible.
Status is designed toward a specific function – Twitter-like activity streams – but it also functions as a more general BuddyPress theme, for maximum flexibility.
Status’s Activity page
That little something extra
Status has been blessed with having some great minds working on its code. As a result, it’s got a few features above and beyond your everyday BuddyPress theme:
- Per-user profile customization: Under Profile, there is a new navigation element called Design, where users can set custom backgrounds and link colours for their profiles.
- Friends list: A list of your friends shows in the sidebar
- Member stats: On member profiles, you can see how many status updates, forum topics, forum replies, blog posts, and blog comments the user has created.
- Fully responsive: Status looks good on screens of all sizes
- Navigation menu in the admin bar : A custom menu area has been added to the WordPress/BuddyPress admin bar.
- Show/hide comments in the activity stream: You can open or close any nested comments in the activity stream for a cleaner, less cluttered view.
- A login template to mean content doesn’t show on the front unless logged in
Not one designer not one developer
At the heart of the creation process was the idea this project would be developed on GitHub and open to anyone who wanted to be part of it. There was also a ‘just do it’ approach to both the design and development, with most design work done directly in code.
A big thank you to the BuddyPress core team for allowing a different type of contribution to the project in the form of this theme. Thanks go out to all those involved so far in this project:
@hnla, @vebailovity, @mercime, @DJPaul, @karmatosed
Also props go to @jarret for saving the day with the last bug fix during the chase to the finish line.
Call to arms
Status is an ongoing open project. If you want help shape version 1.1, 1.2, and beyond, check out the project on GitHub. Want Status to have x or y feature? Well, you can get involved and add it in.
Published on August 6th, 2012 by Paul Gibbs
BuddyPress 1.6.1 is now available! This version contains fixes for a few edge case bugs that came up after BuddyPress 1.6 was released last week, including: full compatibility with Multisite installations using
NOBLOGREDIRECT; a regression in one of our avatar functions that caused avatars to be malformed in some themes; and a load order issue that caused fatal errors with some legacy themes. You can check out the changelog for the release at our bug tracker.
BP 1.6.1 is a recommended upgrade for all installations running BuddyPress 1.6. Have you been holding off on upgrading to 1.6? We’ve got you covered: the BP 1.6 section of the BuddyPress Codex is full of helpful information that’ll help you get your site up to date.
Upgrade to BuddyPress 1.6.1 from your WordPress plugin updater, or download directly from the wordpress.org plugin repository today!
Published on July 27th, 2012 by Paul Gibbs
BuddyPress 1.6 “Lucali” is here!
Version 1.6 is a major feature release for BuddyPress, introducing several hundred of bug fixes, dozens of enhancements, and several major, all-new features.
Whether you’ve never used BuddyPress before or are a longtime BP guru, you’re in for a treat. BuddyPress 1.6 is the most feature-rich, secure, stable, and fun-to-use version to date. Feature highlights include: new Activity Management screens and Akismet integration for activity items; fine-grained visibility levels for profile fields; drastically improved performance on activity, group, and member directories; complete integration with the WordPress Toolbar; canonical redirects for improved search engine performance – and the list goes on. For an exhaustive list of BuddyPress 1.6′s notable fixes and features, check out the BuddyPress Codex 1.6 features and fixes page.
We’ve given BuddyPress 1.6 the codename “Lucali”, after a well-known pizza place in Brooklyn. (A few years ago, several members of the BP team had a brush with fame at Lucali. Hoo boy…) The pies at Lucali are constructed with the utmost care, using only the finest ingredients. Sorta like this version of BP, we think!
We’ve worked hard to ensure that your upgrade to BP 1.6 will be completely smooth. If you do happen to experience experience issues with your BP 1.6 installation or upgrade, the BuddyPress community has assembled a collection of resources for you. In addition to the fixes and features page, you’ll find numerous resources on the Codex home page. The buddypress.org support and discussion forums are another important stop, where you can read, ask, and answer questions about 1.6 and about BuddyPress in general. And if you’re a developer, and you’ve found a bug or have ideas for how to improve BuddyPress, visit out development hub at http://buddypress.trac.wordpress.org.
BuddyPress is software built for communities. So it’s appropriate that behind BP is a community all its own. Version 1.6 wouldn’t have been possible without thousands of hours of volunteer work by hundreds of developers, designers, friendly folks in the forums, site owners, and bug testers. Many thanks to all these community members. Special thanks to the following developers, who contributed patches toward BP 1.6: Aaron Edwards, aliso, andre.w8, apeatling, arpit.tambi.in, augustknight, beaulebens, boonebgorges, chrisbliss18, chrisclayton, chriskeeble, cnorris23, CoenJacobs, davidtcarson, ddean, DJPaul, ebellempire, fanquake, fanquake, filosofo, gagan0123, gary_mazz, Grimbog, hnla, imath, j.conti, johnjamesjacoby, Jonathan Davis, kamatosed, lackingpenguin, lancehudson, Lee Willis, leemour, lsparks, magnus78, Mamaduka, masonjames, mercime, mind1, modemlooper, nacin, needle, Ninos Ego, npetetin, pkchrisjohnson, ppaire, r-a-y, rachelbaker, rbahumi, RuBAN-GT, sboisvert, sbrajesh, slaFFik, slaFFik, SlothLoveChunk, Spitzohr, sushkov, techguytom, Tom J Nowell, travel-junkie, vnd, wdfee, wpdennis, wpmuguru, xeqta.
There’s often a line outside Lucali, and you could easily wait hours to get a pizza. But the wait for BuddyPress 1.6 “Lucali” is over. Download it today from the wordpress.org plugin repository, or from your WordPress Dashboard. Buon appetito!
Published on July 20th, 2012 by Boone Gorges
Available immediately is BuddyPress 1.5.7. This is a security release that affected all previous versions. Thanks to Vnd for responsibly disclosing the bug to our security team. If you are using anything from the BuddyPress 1.5 family, this is a 100% safe update to make.
Also available is BuddyPress 1.6-RC2 which fixes a few issues that were reported in RC1. If you’re a BuddyPress plugin or theme developer, this is your last chance to ensure BP 1.6 compatibility before release. If you’re involved in BuddyPress localisation, you should do one last check that your language packs are up to date.
As always, please report bugs on the support forums or at BuddyPress Trac. Get BP 1.6-RC2 from wordpress.org (zip).
Published on July 5th, 2012 by Boone Gorges
That BOOM! you just heard was the sound of BuddyPress 1.6 Release Candidate 1 dropping.
“Release Candidate” means that we think we’ve got the important bugs ironed out, and we’re on the cusp of releasing BuddyPress 1.6. If you’re a BuddyPress plugin or theme developer, this is your last chance to ensure BP 1.6 compatibility before release. If you’re involved in BuddyPress localization, you should do one last check that your language packs are up to date. And if you run a BuddyPress-powered site, consider running BP 1.6 RC1 in your development environments to help us identify any remaining issues.
As always, please report bugs on the support forums or at BuddyPress Trac. Get BP 1.6-RC1 from wordpress.org (zip).
Published on June 19th, 2012 by Paul Gibbs
BuddyPress 1.6 Beta 2 is now available for download. BP 1.6 is just around the corner, and you can help us get there sooner by testing the latest beta version today!
The shiniest new features in BuddyPress 1.6 are: the new Activity Management panels in the Dashboard; Akismet integration for the Activity stream; improved SEO in the form of canonical redirects; full integration into the WordPress Toolbar; and Extended Profile field visibility. If you’re a developer or site admin testing BP 1.6-beta2 in a development environment, you might want to spend a bit of extra time on these new features.
As always, we recommend that you do not run beta software in production environments. If you think you’ve found a bug, or have feedback, please leave a message on the support forums or report a bug on our bugtracker.
Download BuddyPress 1.6 Beta 2 (zip) from the wordpress.org plugin repository.
Published on June 13th, 2012 by John James Jacoby
BuddyPress 1.6 Beta 1 is now available. Download BuddyPress 1.6 Beta 1 (zip) from wordpress.org, or check out the milestone on Trac.
Beta time means that we think 1.6 is almost ready to be released. But first, we’d like some feedback from BuddyPress plugin authors, theme designers, or those who manage BuddyPress sites. Now is your chance to help us help you, and check out all the work that’s gone into making the next version of BuddyPress more efficient and more powerful.
If you think you’ve found a bug, or have feedback, please leave a message on the support forums or report a bug on our bugtracker.
As always, please DO NOT run BuddyPress Beta software on your live production site. There may be quirks with existing plugins and we will be updating code rapidly as bug reports come in. Install BuddyPress 1.6 Beta 1 on a local installation or a test site, and let us know if you find anything that isn’t working the way it should. We’re shooting for a release in the next few weeks – and the more testers we get, the quicker it’ll be. So get testing!
Published on May 1st, 2012 by Paul Gibbs
Available immediately is BuddyPress 1.5.6. This maintenance release addresses WordPress 3.4 compatibility, and fixes five other annoyances. If you are using anything from the BuddyPress 1.5 family, this is a 100% safe update to make.
Download BuddyPress 1.5.6 from WordPress Extend or BuddyPress.org. The release notes are available on the Codex.
We’re also putting out a beta of BuddyPress 1.6 later this week. The new forums integration is a bit raw, so we’re pushing that out until 1.7 to get all the new BuddyPress hotness out sooner. Stay tuned!
Published on April 23rd, 2012 by Boone Gorges
This post was written by Adam Heward, a member of the BuddyPress community and ICT Manager at Newham Bridge Primary School.
Facebook is an endemic problem for UK schools. Issues from outside of the classroom are being brought into school as a result of Facebook interactions and schools are powerless to do anything about it. I found out on my first day in my new job as ICT manager in a primary school in Middlesbrough, UK when I was asked “What can we do about Facebook?”
Our school had experienced everything from name calling to death threats, doctored pictures to stolen identities; all of this from users who were still at least 4 years short of Facebook’s (all too easy to avoid) minimum age requirement of 13 years old. We needed to steer our students away from Facebook and toward something the school could police, and make sure we catch the others before opening Facebook accounts.
That’s where BuddyPress came in.
BuddyPress enabled us to start our own school-oriented social network, where children can communicate with their classmates in a safe and monitored environment. Every child was given a username and password as well as training on how to use the platform. We encourage responsible use of the Internet through teaching our children how to be good e-citizens. Our social network is treated like the children’s school books where the children should produce their best work at all times. This is imposed to produce an environment of high quality writing (typing) which in turn breeds good writing habits both online and in the rest of their school work.
Our social network is hosted on the Internet rather than any internal school server and so it is easily accessible to the children at home which has further encouraged participation. The children have really enjoyed engaging with their classmates, and even their teachers, on the school social network; sharing brief conversations about both in school and out of school matters. Teachers are able to set tasks for whole class groups or give encouragement to individual learners. It’s a valuable tool to enhance communication between teaching staff, reminding colleagues of events, sharing resources for lessons, and taking care of administrative and social notices.
The basic functionality of BuddyPress can be further extended through the use of the ever expanding Plugins library. We use BuddyPress Docs where children can collaborate on a shared piece of work and teachers can make comments and suggestions to help the children to enhance it. We also have the CubePoints for BuddyPress plugin to encourage participation on our social network. Children are awarded points for logging in daily and posting comments and a chart showing to top users is displayed in the sidebar. Points can also be deducted for any issues both online and offline.
In addition to the masses of free plugins that are available, we have a paid subscription to WPMUDEV’s BuddyPress Calendar Plugin to help us to plan events in the school calendar such as Sports Day and Summer Fairs, or for individual groups such as fixtures for the school football team.
BuddyPress is the perfect fit for our school. The flexibility and extensibility of the WordPress platform, the continually updated plug-in environment, well documented support, and the fact it’s all free, leads me to the conclusion that it can be just as successful in all other schools as it has been with ours. Thank you for the opportunity to share our story!
One Million (and four)
Today, BuddyPress saw its one millionth download!
Many thanks to the thousands (and thousands!) of contributors, developers, site admins, and users who have made BuddyPress thrive. The ongoing popularity of BuddyPress is a direct result of the vibrant and growing BuddyPress community – we couldn’t have done it without you.
Here’s to the next million!