New Feature: Profile Cover Photos

Discussion in 'Announcements' started by Jason Tate, Jan 18, 2016.

  1. Jason Tate Jan 18, 2016
    (Last edited: Mar 16, 2016)
    Jason Tate

    chorus.fm @jason_tate @encorepodcast Staff Member

    One of the last features I wanted to build into the beta version of this forum before it was ready for launch (aside from all the bug fixes I know will be found) was a cover photo feature. I like how this works on Facebook and Twitter and it gives profiles a nice customization and personal feel. (I also worked them into the mini-profiles.) Since these are large images (especially for retina screens), and I'm not sure how well the feature will scale with more users, I am making this a supporter perk for the time being. I may change that at some point after seeing how the website handles traffic and load times and all of that.
    • Cover photos can be uploaded via edit profile.
    • It is recommended that a large image is used in the same way you would a wallpaper. Images that cover the whole area just look better on all screens than those that only take up a small corner.
    • I'd recommend playing around in an image editor (Gimp, Pixelmator, or Acorn are all good) to make the image somewhere around 2024 pixels wide by 600 high. This will keep the image relatively sharp even on retina screens. If you don't have an image editor handy, give Landcape a try. Upload your image, set a custom size (2024x600 works well), and then move, crop, and zoom in or out on your image until you like how it looks.
    • There's a 2 MB max file size limit. (I export as a JPG and run it through the free ImageOptim to keep the filesize low.)
    • Currently the system allows you to replace your cover photo, but if you end up wanting to delete the cover photo and not have one at all, please just message me and I can take care of that.
    • If you upload a new image and it's not showing, make sure you do a hard refresh to clear your cache.
    If any issues or suggestions come to mind, please let me know. Thanks!
     

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  2. Eric Wilson

    Trusted Supporter

    Awesome idea. Really loving the new features/social media aspect that this is taking on. The extra personalization it brings to profiles is great.
     
  3. Eric Wilson

    Trusted Supporter

    Also good idea making it a perk for the Supporter perk for now. Very curious to see as the site grows, how many members sign up for that.
     
  4. Jason Tate Jan 18, 2016
    (Last edited: Jan 18, 2016)
    Jason Tate

    chorus.fm @jason_tate @encorepodcast Staff Member

    It was always supposed to be a part of AP.net, and it was hacked together to work for a while in like 2007. This is the more actualized version of what I aways wanted that site to be on the community side. Following users, a feed of what your friends are doing on the site, threaded group chats, status updates/wall/blog. I was basically promised the resources to build this with a team of engineers when I sold the site but that was soon forgotten. Spam took over all the user profiles on AP.net and no one would help with that, and then the blogs broke and got so outdated that I even left and took my blog elsewhere and I couldn't get anyone to help me fix them or reintegrate them and I was told I could have access to the codebase to fix it once they got us up on a subversion/git system ... in 2009 (it never happened, I couldn't actually make code edits without sneaky hacks) ... and then the gallery fell apart ... it was just a damn mess. So I built this alone in silence. I'm just happy it exists.
     
  5. Jason Tate Jan 18, 2016
    (Last edited: Jan 18, 2016)
    Jason Tate

    chorus.fm @jason_tate @encorepodcast Staff Member

    Me too. If it's enticing to a fraction of the members this website can become self-sustaining and we can keep it up and growing and improving it. Like forum kickstarter! Haha. I refuse to go down the rabbit-hole of shitty ads and all that bullshit from before, so it either works or I go down trying.
     
  6. Eric Wilson

    Trusted Supporter

    The more backstories I hear about this, the more it makes sense about the starting over fresh part. I would have hated going into a deal like that thinking you'd be given the resources that you need, only for that to just fade away over time with nothing done.
     
    Jason Tate likes this.
  7. Eric Wilson

    Trusted Supporter

    I think that attitude right there shows that you're wanting to do something special with this new site, which hopefully other people will see as this things grows. Was looking over the supporter perks, so basically, there still will be some ads on the site, for non-supporter members? Just not to the extent of AP.net?

    But yeah maybe as time goes on, you can find a way to include Encore perks to supporter members as well. Haha I don't know much about the Podcast world specifics, but potentially access to a longer version of the week's podcast, or outtakes or whatnot, or get access to the episode a day early? Ha don't know if that's something people would consider "as a perk" or not, or if that would mess up any metrics for the Podcast.
     
  8. Jason Tate

    chorus.fm @jason_tate @encorepodcast Staff Member

    Yeah, the ads will be smaller and very few per page -- I've got a couple house/testing ads running right now while testing things out. I think that they're more engaging and interesting if people actually want to look at them because they're relevant and not taking over the whole site in the gross way it got out of hand on AP.net. My long term goal would be that the website could become completely member supported, and there would be enough value in being a member that we got a critical mass to sign up and make everything work without needing to run ads. But that may be a long shot, especially for a while, so I want the ads we do run to be good ads in the meantime (load fast, be relevant, no tracking, and not intrusive). If that makes sense.

    Been thinking a lot about other perks and stuff for the membership program, incorporating the podcast to some degree is definitely worth looking at. Extra episodes, exclusive merch, maybe a day early feed or things like that could maybe work -- just need more time to think that all through and see what works best. Got a long pipeline of ideas and things to try and experiment with and see what works. That podcast takes a lot of time to put together each week so that's why I hope we can get some members, keep getting sponsors, and keep growing everything. Fingers crossed.
     
  9. Ryan Gardner

    @RyanGardnerC Moderator

    Whoa cool. Added one to play around with it - worked great.
     
    Jason Tate likes this.
  10. Greg Robson

    Moderator Moderator

    I have loved the ads. Very topical, very engaging. Fits with the site and its themes very much. Wanted to ask if that was intentional. Turns out it was!
     
    Eric Wilson and Jason Tate like this.
  11. Eric Wilson

    Trusted Supporter

    The ones I've seen right now definitely have not been as obtrusive as AP.net. But yep sounds like you've had your hands quite full for a while now. I imagined something like the Podcast would take quite a bit of time, and then still doing AP.net stuff as well. Just a ton of planning, trying to think out every possible scenario and idea, and seeing it through. Ha you must have quite the spreadsheet or organizational app going.
     
  12. Jason Tate

    chorus.fm @jason_tate @encorepodcast Staff Member

    Heh. Yeah. It's going to be a while until I sleep well.
    [​IMG]

    I need to hire/find someone more knowledgable than me when it comes to server administration, and that alone is going to be a pain in the ass, next few months are going to be crazy.
     
  13. Drew Beringer

    @drewberinger Moderator

    oooooh this is neat
     
  14. Keagan Ilvonen

    Newbie

    These look super cool. Gahhhh, everything is just so much better.
     
  15. Drew Beringer

    @drewberinger Moderator

    is there a way to reposition the cover photo a la Facebook
     
  16. Jason Tate

    chorus.fm @jason_tate @encorepodcast Staff Member

    Hahah, thanks! That's the goal: everything be better.

    Not yet. Currently it's just once size and I'm doing the positioning automatically, so cropping it yourself before upload is the best solution ATM (or I can help). I will probably add a feature to do just that in the future (since it makes total sense), but, since it's a supporter perk at the moment I have some other pressing things I need to focus on first then I'll probably return to that.

    Yours looks cool though! Love how it looks on mobile.
     
  17. Eric Wilson

    Trusted Supporter

    That's a lot of projects... At least it should hopefully be the good kind of busy, since it's something you actually want to do.
     
    Jason Tate likes this.
  18. Jason Tate

    chorus.fm @jason_tate @encorepodcast Staff Member

    Adding in this part:
    If you don't have an image editor handy, give Landcape a try. Upload your image, set a custom size (2024x600 works well), and then move, crop, and zoom in or out on your image until you like how it looks.
     
    Jacob Tender and Eric Wilson like this.
  19. phaynes1

    Regular

    Didn't fully read this and uploaded one that fits poorly. Have tried the hard refresh and clearing the cache and stuff but uploading a better one hasn't seemed to work out yet. Poop.
     
  20. Sophos

    Regular

    not gonna lie, i upgraded to supporter just to try this feature out B-)
     
  21. Jason Tate

    chorus.fm @jason_tate @encorepodcast Staff Member

    Haha, it looks good.

    Make sure you give Dark Mode a try as well.
     
    Sophos likes this.
  22. phaynes1

    Regular

    love jakes
     
    Sophos likes this.