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Article: Welcome to the new Twins Daily!

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#1 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 26 July 2014 - 03:20 PM

It has been two long months of project outlines, software testing, design, development, testing, and finally… migration.

Welcome to the new Twins Daily, everyone!You’ll find the three core components of the site: Articles, Forums, and Blogs are still much like the old site. On top of that, we now have a Gallery Section where you can upload images to use in your blogs, forum posts, or just as a place to collect your favorite cat pics. Another all-new section is coming in the next week after it clears testing.

As always, you can open and create a personal blog to share with the rest of the community. One of my biggest issues with the last design and software package is that I never had time to shore up some of the deficiencies of the section and it always felt lacking in implementation. This time around, I spent several days combing through the blog section of the code, redesigning elements, and I hope you can see the difference. It’s easier to navigate and has a much cleaner design.

The coolest feature on the site – in my humble opinion, of course – is the kick-ass job Jeremy Nygaard has done with the Organization Charts and Roster & Payroll sections of the site. Instead of looking at a spreadsheet full of names, you can now sort and filter players before clicking into a more robust player section with more information and an image. Shout-out to Jeremy for working with me for weeks on this section of the site. We still have a little de-bugging to do and he hasn’t quite completed entering all the information for the minor league players but we’re off to a solid start.

As you poke around the site, you’ll notice several small changes:

- The search function is now by site section
- There is a handy “back” button at the top left of the site that takes you one level up the navigation
- If you mouse over a thread, you are given the option to preview the first and last post of that thread by clicking the down arrow
- If you are logged in and mouse over a person’s name, it will bring up a hover card to interact with that user
- Near the top right, you’ll see an icon that looks a bit like a guitar pick, use this to quickly navigate around the site

Despite spending what is well over 200 hours on this project over the past 8+ weeks, I still find features I didn’t know the software included by default. And this is just the beginning… In the coming months, we’ll continue to use this platform as a base to greatly expand the Twins Daily and MinnCentric communities, integrating them in ways that simply were not possible on the old platform.

That’s all I gots for today. Before I go, I’d like to thank the following people for putting in massive amounts of effort to help us make this site a success:

Jeremy Nygaard, ChiTownTwinsFan, diehardtwinsfan, twinsnorth49, ashburyjohn, glunn, USAFchief, and many more who helped me test the site during its early stages… Sorry if I forgot any of you that helped.

On behalf of John, Seth, Nick, Parker, and myself, I hope you all enjoy the new site and if you see any bugs in the system, feel free to comment below and we’ll start squashing them as fast as we can.

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#2 JB_Iowa

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Posted 26 July 2014 - 03:33 PM

Brock,

 

First, congratulations on the revamped site and thanks for all of your hard work.  I'm sure we'll all find a lot to like as we explore.

 

Also, thanks to those of you who devoted time and effort to helping Brock with the testing.  And a big thanks to Jeremy -- just took a brief look at the organization chart and roster & payroll -- they are amazing.  And thanks to all of the owners and contributors at TD for giving us a place to talk about our favorite team that is both open for discussion and relatively sane (with the exception of the occasional game thread on the sanity question).

 

A couple of questions and suggestions:

 

1.  I'd suggest that you lock the thread on TD being down this a.m. so that any comments on the new site get put here instead.

 

2.  Will you continue to add Articles to the appropriate forum so that they get comments?  As nice as the right sidebar is, I still believe that it is the forums that will help drive the comments.  And it just seems easier to keep track of new posts there.

 

3.  On the forums, can you tell us the easiest way to navigate to the last unread post in a thread?

 

Love the color scheme and the REALLY CLEAN fonts and I'm sure I'll get used ot some of the things that may seem strange to me at first.  Congrats again on completing the "make-over".

 

JB

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#3 JB_Iowa

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Posted 26 July 2014 - 03:37 PM

One more thing, is there something happening that old articles are just appearing all of a sudden.  I'm going in and reading thinking that the Twins are claiming people off waivers and its really old news.

 

Ah, growing pains ... such fun.

 

Basically I've just marked all my forums as read so I'll know when comments are really new but the Articles section is just humming.


#4 ChiTownTwinsFan

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Posted 26 July 2014 - 04:05 PM

I'm going to lock the other thread in the main forum and direct all questions to here.

Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies.


#5 JB_Iowa

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Posted 26 July 2014 - 04:08 PM

Thanks ChiTown and yes, Brock ... ChiTown did answer my question about getting to the last post in a thread  .... just click on the star at left.

 

The trick is that when you first get on the revamped site, the star will always take you to the first post so readers either need to mark the thread as read so that the star will then take you only to the first new post or just mark the whole forum as read and get a fresh start.


#6 TheLeviathan

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Posted 26 July 2014 - 04:13 PM

Brock, when I clicked on this article on the quick-link on the right, I couldn't reply.  I had to go through Chi's link to find a way to post.  Not sure how that was possible or why.

 

I love the look!  Any way we can change it so that we don't see who started a thread but who the last post was by and when?

 

I just could care less when a thread was started, but stars or not it's nice to see when threads were last posted on.  Just a personal preference, not sure if I'm alone in that.


#7 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 26 July 2014 - 04:17 PM

One more thing, is there something happening that old articles are just appearing all of a sudden.  I'm going in and reading thinking that the Twins are claiming people off waivers and its really old news.

 

Ah, growing pains ... such fun.

 

Yep. That's a growing pain. No idea why that happened, as it didn't happen during my test migrations.


#8 Hosken Bombo Disco

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Posted 26 July 2014 - 04:23 PM

This is going to be great, but it's always a little (or a lot) awkward at first..

 

Like coming home one day and all your furniture is moved around, new chairs you haven't sat in before and someone changed the curtains, the kitchen table is sitting in the master bedroom, the bookshelf you donated 2 years ago is back in the corner where the fishbowl was, and so on. :)


#9 hawkiconk

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Posted 26 July 2014 - 04:27 PM

not that i plan or want to accumulate-- i assure you all that i do not

but the waarning point tally under the post number----  how many points before a timeout or dismissal

 

thanks for putting up with an old white sox fan!!

lot of great senses of humor here-- as there were on the other couple twins' boards i enjoyed so much!!

god bless the good ol' grateful dead


#10 ChiTownTwinsFan

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Posted 26 July 2014 - 04:33 PM

not that i plan or want to accumulate-- i assure you all that i do not

but the waarning point tally under the post number----  how many points before a timeout or dismissal

 

thanks for putting up with an old white sox fan!!

lot of great senses of humor here-- as there were on the other couple twins' boards i enjoyed so much!!

The 'time out' period is automatic once you've reached a certain number of 'infractions.'  Once the moderators are acclimated to the new system we will post how that will work. I think once you accumulate 3 points you sit for 24 hrs, come back and get another point, it's 3 days, another and it's a week.  It's an automatic system.  And the points do retire after a length of time.  As I said, once we are acclimated, we will outline how that works.

Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies.


#11 ChiTownTwinsFan

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Posted 26 July 2014 - 04:36 PM

Thanks ChiTown and yes, Brock ... ChiTown did answer my question about getting to the last post in a thread  .... just click on the star at left.

 

The trick is that when you first get on the revamped site, the star will always take you to the first post so readers either need to mark the thread as read so that the star will then take you only to the first new post or just mark the whole forum as read and get a fresh start.

I think that's how it works.  It's been a couple of weeks since I test drove; and since my life lately has gotten pretty hectic, I'm going to have to relearn what I tested all over again because that stuff went out of my head when other stuff cropped up.  What I suggest is giving it a full go ... go in and out of forums, click navigational links, click stars or dots when you see them to see what happens.  Click and learn.  Then post questions.  I know, it's a pita to have to learn new stuff, but once you get used to it, you'll wonder why it wasn't like this all along! 

Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies.


#12 JB_Iowa

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Posted 26 July 2014 - 04:41 PM

I think that's how it works.  It's been a couple of weeks since I test drove; and since my life lately has gotten pretty hectic, I'm going to have to relearn what I tested all over again because that stuff went out of my head when other stuff cropped up.  What I suggest is giving it a full go ... go in and out of forums, click navigational links, click stars or dots when you see them to see what happens.  Click and learn.  Then post questions.  I know, it's a pita to have to learn new stuff, but once you get used to it, you'll wonder why it wasn't like this all along! 

 

Wow, if 3 points will get you a delay, I'm a little confused about how I got 3 points when I can only remember one warning about a month ago and (maybe) one in September 2011 (or thereabouts) (I'm not even sure that was an official warning).


#13 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 26 July 2014 - 04:43 PM

The points are behaving badly. I'll look into wiping out everyone's warning points.

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#14 JB_Iowa

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Posted 26 July 2014 - 04:44 PM

The points are behaving badly. I'll look into wiping out everyone's warning points.

 

Thank you.  I did make one sarcastic comment in the last month or so that I was called on but otherwise I think I've been pretty well-behaved.  :)


#15 ChiTownTwinsFan

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Posted 26 July 2014 - 04:49 PM

Heh ... well Ash has 15.  We had fun testing things. :)

 

And I'm trying to figure out how to remove my own, because I am and always will be an angel.  :)

Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies.


#16 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 26 July 2014 - 04:52 PM

Thank you.  I did make one sarcastic comment in the last month or so that I was called on but otherwise I think I've been pretty well-behaved.   :)

 

A nice feature in the new system is that even if you get a "ban", you can still PM moderators and admins so you're not completely locked out of the system.


#17 ChiTownTwinsFan

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Posted 26 July 2014 - 04:55 PM

Ah, nice Brock ... that was quick.  Okay ... we all get to start fresh ... the clock starts ticking now.  :)

Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies.


#18 Thrylos

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Posted 26 July 2014 - 04:57 PM

Looks good, much cleaner, but navigation is a bear :)

 

Got used to the latest forum posts on the right hand side, now it seems that only articles are there.  Also the RSS feed for external Twins' blogs is gone.  Miss that too.

 

Guess it will take some time to get used to it.

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#19 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 26 July 2014 - 04:57 PM

Ah, nice Brock ... that was quick.  Okay ... we all get to start fresh ... the clock starts ticking now.  :)

 

You all had a little too much fun during the testing process. I told you to stop giving each other warnings.

 

But did you listen? Noooooooo. :D


#20 JB_Iowa

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Posted 26 July 2014 - 04:58 PM

Ah, nice Brock ... that was quick.  Okay ... we all get to start fresh ... the clock starts ticking now.  :)

 

 

Get that virtual "red ink" ready, ChiTown.  :)


#21 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 26 July 2014 - 04:58 PM

Also the RSS feed for external Twins' blogs is gone.  Miss that too.

 

That will be back. There were some technical difficulties with the feed. I haven't had time to sort it out yet.


#22 Brock Beauchamp

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Posted 26 July 2014 - 04:59 PM

BTW, I went from 8,000+ posts to... 50.

 

But I had a sneaking suspicion that was going to happen. Harrumph.


#23 iTwins

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Posted 26 July 2014 - 05:00 PM

First observations: The site looks REALLY good on mobile. I usually didn't bother stopping by on my iPad because I never really liked the "feel" of the site before, but this design is much nicer on the portable devices, IMO. 

 

I like the style, some things will take a bit to get used to - but overall, a very nice upgrade. Kudos to all involved! 

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#24 ChiTownTwinsFan

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Posted 26 July 2014 - 05:00 PM

Yeah, me too.  Okay ... I don't seem to be able to 'like' a comment ... I've reached my quota of happiness, or some such was the message.  And I no longer see the last post and date thing to the right of the thread subject.  It was there, but not now.

Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies.


#25 Monkeypaws

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Posted 26 July 2014 - 05:01 PM

Very nice look - left me with a good 1st impression.


#26 Winston Smith

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Posted 26 July 2014 - 05:06 PM

Game thread tonight? If so where?

May all our prospects be All Stars and the beer be free.


#27 jorgenswest

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Posted 26 July 2014 - 05:10 PM

I do appreciate they effort. I wonder it there is still things to work out. I chose to put my blog articles here and it would be nice if they remained. Maybe no one else would go back and look, but I look to see how my thoughts may have changed. One thing that distinguishes for me whether it is a forum entry or a bog entry is whether I would go back and look at it. John always talks about writing stuff he would want to read. I looked at the two July blog entries I wrote in July. The first is unreadable due to missing tables. The second is missing with the exception of the comments. Perhaps this isn't the kind of thing you want to read after weeks of hard work and I do appreciate the effort it must take to manage a site.

#28 JB_Iowa

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Posted 26 July 2014 - 05:13 PM

Game thread tonight? If so where?

 

http://twinsdaily.co...e-726-610pm-ct/

 

under Minnesota Twins Talk.

 

 

Unless you haven't caught up in the forums lately, I do recommend going in and just marking the whole forum as "read".  It'll make it so much easier to stay current from here on.


#29 diehardtwinsfan

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Posted 26 July 2014 - 05:35 PM

I'm filing a service time grievance due to my post total going away.


#30 ChiTownTwinsFan

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Posted 26 July 2014 - 05:37 PM

Your post total didn't go away.  But mine did.  Meh.

Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies.