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TheJackal TheJackal
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IPSDev

4.4: 6 New Micro Features

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I really enjoy writing about the new features the development team have been slaving over for weeks (and sometimes months.)

It's a real joy to be able to share the finished product after we've seen it through inception, discussion, planning, assigning to a developer, coding, peer reviewing and final group testing.

Although sometimes, the features can be explained in a few screenshots, which makes for a pretty thin blog entry.

With that in mind, I've grouped together 6 of the best new micro-features for Invision Community 4.4.

Browser notifications
We introduced browser notifications in a previous version of Invision Community.

Once you've opted in to receive them, you'll get a fancy browser notification when new content is posted while you're off browsing other sites.

However, the browser prompt to ask for permission to push notifications isn't subtle, and it attacks you the second you log in for the first time.

In Invision Community 4.4, we've made it, so you're only asked to opt-in once you open the notification drop down.

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No more being attacked by a permission dialog

Widget display settings
One of the most popular features we've added to the front end in recent times is the drag and drop widgets.

We see these used on almost every site we visit.

A popular request, though, was to be able to hide them from specific devices. By default, the sidebars appear under the main content when viewed on a smaller device such as a phone.

There may be times where you wish to show a block for those on tablets and desktops, but remove it for phones, so it doesn't take up precious retail space.

Happily, you can now do this on each block with 4.4.

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Desktop only?

Club Navigation
Clubs are relatively new to Invision Community but they incredibly popular as they allow you to run micro-communities within your main community.

You're not limited to just forums either; you can add gallery albums and more to each club.

We've added the ability to re-arrange the club tabs allowing you to prioritise what you members see first.

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Rearranging club tabs

Announcement URLS
Announcements have been a core feature for a long time now. We use them whenever we have a holiday so we can notify our customers about reduced support on those days.

We've made it so you can now link to an item, rather than have to provide new copy for each announcement.

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We may have overdone it a bit

Time Frame selector
We noticed that in numerous areas around the Admin CP we had time input boxes. These would sometimes be used for seconds, minutes, hours and even days.

We've seen customers forced to enter things like 86400 seconds when they want the time frame to last a day. The lack of consistency wasn't great either.

In Invision Community 4.4, we've added a new Time Frame selector which is used as standard on all areas we ask for a time frame to be entered.

No more taking your socks off to work out how many seconds in a month.

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Time is no longer relative

Group Name Styling
For about as long as I can remember (and as I get older, this is not an impressive amount of time), we've allowed group names to be stylized when shown in the online user list.

A very popular request is to extend that same group highlighting throughout the suite.

Finally, Invision Community 4.4 brings this to the suite.

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If the group name is visible, that gets the styling, otherwise the name does

These features may be micro in nature, but we hope they make a significant improvement to your community.

Which are you most looking forward to? Drop a comment below and let us know.

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