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Winter is coming and so are new BBCodes!

17 Comments
Dec 05 - 14:42, by Muddy Waters


Now how cool is that: Christmas is not due for another couple of weeks and yet you get to put your hands on some new toys already. When speaking of toys in the context of a bulletin board such as ours, I am of course referring to BBCodes; among some other changes that is.

The last couple of weeks have been fairly busy for us, so we sure hope you appreciate the result of the countless hours of work we have put into this.
Not only did we add a few additional BBCodes, but also revamped some of the most popular existing ones. Another change affects images added via BBCode, as we have also replaced the add-on previously used for scaling down images with one of our own that better fits our needs and thus can handle things a bit more smartly. In addition to that, we have introduced a fixed limit for signature heights (350px). Any contents exceeding this limit will not be shown.

In the following, I will elaborate on the changes and new BBCodes in detail, show some example uses and give you some additional remarks. Please note that most of the new and updated BBCodes only work as intended if you have JavaScript enabled.

If you do not feel like taking the grand tour, at least have a look at the board FAQ for a complete list of all available BBCodes: BBCode List


BBCode: JUSTIFY


This BBCode is the result of a recent thread in our Suggestions forum created by Kentika - kudos to him for this truly great suggestion! If this BBCode is used on a text, all of its lines will be aligned so that they have the same width. Not only does justified text look great, but also makes reading a lot easier. In case you are wondering why this paragraph looks all tidy and is fairly easy to read: I am using this very BBCode here!

We have added an icon in advanced editor toolbar to allow an easier use of this BBCode:




BBCode: HR


This BBCode is not exactly new, it was already added a couple of weeks ago. However, since we didn't properly announce it back then, I feel it should be mentioned here. It was also given a little update and now supports the use of variable widths.




BBCode: SPOILER


This BBCode was remade from scratch in order for it to allow a more complex use. It now comes with a new look and supports options such as custom titles, as well as custom title colors and font styles (e.g. bold, italic etc.).

We have also added an icon in editor toolbar to allow an easier use of this BBCode:




BBCode: IMG


Extensive changes were made to this BBCode as well, in order to allow for further customization. To allow an easier use of these new options, we added a new dialog window that will help you inserting images into your posts. You can open it by clicking on the following icon in the text editor toolbar:

By default, images in your posts will be added to what we like to call an implicit image gallery. It basically means that a larger version of your image is shown as you click on it. In addition to that, this will allow you to browse through all images in a post, rather than clicking on them one at a time in order to view the images in full size. Should you run into performance issues with transition animations, you should disable them in UserCP.

Note that the resize bars (the yellow ones) that used to be shown when an image was scaled down automatically have been removed without replacement; however, images will still be scaled to fit the post area, we just removed those bars as they seemed somewhat unnecessary and not exactly nice to look at either.




BBCode: GALLERY


This all-new BBCode allows you to add interactive image galleries to your posts and thus provides an elegant new way of adding larger numbers of images (max. 50 per gallery) to your posts.

In order for images to be used in a gallery, they must first be uploaded to the Internet by using an image hosting service such as epvpimg.

In order to ensure best performance for your gallery, it is recommended to provide every image that is supposed to be in your gallery in three different sizes. For the default aspect ratio (16:9), these sizes are as follows:
  • Basic view (the image shown as you view a post): 720x405px
  • Thumbnail view (the image shown when browsing thumbnails): 80x45px
  • Fullscreen view (the image shown in fullscreen mode): e.g. 1920x1080px
Galleries will still work if you only provide each gallery image in a single size. However, these images will then likely require automatic scaling, making your gallery slow. While this might not be an issue when only having a hand full of images, it sure will become an issue if you add a few dozen images to your gallery, all of which being way too large for basic and thumbnail view. Apart from that, image quality might suffer from automatic downscaling.

The syntax for gallery tends to become a bit complicated, especially if you have many images in your gallery. For this reason, we added a new dialog window that helps you creating a gallery. You can open it by clicking on the following icon in the advanced text editor toolbar:

Should you run into performance issues with galleries, you can disable transition animations as well as preloading of galleries in UserCP.




Signature Height Limitation


As I have already mentioned earlier, there is now a built-in height limit for signatures of 350px. Any content exceeding this limit will be cut off and not be shown. This will render the existing rule restricting the maximum height of signatures obsolete and thus result in less penalties on your end and less effort enforcing this rule on our end.

We have changed the signature preview so you can see right away whether or not your signature exceeds the limit: Edit Signature

Note that the contents of spoiler BBCodes are not affected by this limit, i.e. spoilers can still expand beyond the limit. So just make sure that your signature height does not exceed the limit while all spoilers are collapsed.

Additionally, images in signatures that are not embedded in a spoiler BBCode will now be scaled down so they do not exceed a height of 200px. So using images that are slightly larger than the limit previously set in the signature rules (i.e. 200px) is no longer an issue, however, keep in mind that the limitations in terms of file size (i.e. 300kB per image) still apply.




This should suffice for a brief introduction. Feel free to leave your feedback in this thread. If you have more complex questions and/or suggestions regarding any of the new BBCodes or changes, feel free to create a thread in main forum about it.

If you stumble across bugs, please do not hesitate and contact us right away. You should preferably do so by creating a thread in Complaint forum.

Thank you very much for your attention and have fun giving those new BBCodes a try!



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