It's been almost a year and a half since Jamroom 5.2 was released , and today we're kicking off the Beta release of Jamroom 5.3!
Jamroom 5.3 builds on Jamroom 5.2 and adds some really cool new features. Our plan is to run Jamroom 5.3 as a beta release for a little bit so we can get feedback and input from the Jamroom community on how things are working. It should be much more stable than a "normal" beta, as it is improvements and enhancements that continue Jamroom 5.2, but this way we can be sure that those users running 5.3 know that things could change based on feedback.
So what's new in Jamroom 5.3? We've been working hard for the last 4-5 weeks on some ideas we have had for a while to make Jamroom easier to use. Most of the Jamroom 5.3 features are on the "ACP" (admin control panel) side of things, so updating to the new Jamroom 5.3 Core should be pretty easy - there's no template changes that are going to need to be integrated in to your custom skin (if you have created one). Our goal with Jamroom 5.3 was to focus on usability - making things easier to use on a day to day basis for Jamroom admins.
New System Wide Recycle Bin
Jamroom 5.3 has a new system "Recycle Bin" that can help you recover if items (profile, users, blog posts, etc.) are accidentally deleted on your system. You can configure the length of time items will remain in the Recycle Bin before being permanently deleted, and you'll find the new "Recycle Bin" tab in the Dashboard.
We've updated the Admin Control panel with better search, new module categories that are designed to make it easier to find what you're looking for, as well as a new "Dashboard" tab that makes it easy to switch back and forth between the ACP and the Dashboard. Module jumpers have also been updated with module categories to make it easier to quickly move to the module you're looking for.
We've updated the Dashboard layout to now include the new Recycle Bin, as well as the core Queue Viewer. We've also updated the Activity Log section to have the Debug and Error logs available, and have generally gone through all the Dashboard screens and tweaked and updated things to make it easier to get around. There is a new "ACP" tab as well for Master Admins to easily switch between the ACP and Dashboard.
Improved HTML formatting and clean-up
Jamroom 5.3 will do a much better job of "cleaning up" malformed HTML that might be entered on the site - this can prevent a page from appearing "broken" because some embedded HTML did not have the proper closing tags (which can happen if you are truncating user input to include in lists on your site). HTML is now scanned and all tags are "closed" that have been left open, which should prevent anything from spilling over.
CSS Sprite Icons updated for HiRes displays
The Core provided icons that are used throughout the site have been updated to serve "hi-res" versions to users on high density display devices (i.e. iPad and "retina" screens, etc.) - this should make things look crisper on these new devices.
New "Birthday Date" form designer form field
A new Form Designer form field has been added that allows you to capture dates before 1970 - this is something many Jamroom sites have wanted to allow them to have a "birthday" custom form field.
LOTS of small updates and Tweaks
There are dozens of other small updates and tweaks throughout the Core including an updated Queue Viewer with new Queue tools, updated Performance Check, streamlined ACP search, better layout of Config options and more.
Module updates too!
A lot of work has gone into the new Jamroom Core 5.3, but we also have A LOT of module updates that we're excited about too:
- All new "Overlay" media players for the Audio, Video and Playlist modules - these new players are more modern and streamlined and look AWESOME on the page.
- Timeline updates to bring the "style" of the Timeline home index page in line with the other pages in the profile.
- All new Spam Blocker module that provides you with new tools to help fight Spam on your site - including user probation, detection of offsite URLs and HTML stripping. This is a "rename" of the old Akismet module, and it still features integration with the Akismet Blog Spam detection service.
- Updated Aparna module (now in the Developer category) that makes it even easier to create custom modules - includes new Module Description and Icon fields that make your custom modules truly unique in the ACP.
- Updated Developer Tools including new "Reset Categories" tool that will reset your ACP to the new Jamroom 5.3 module category structure, as well as updates to module and skin packaging.
- Updated Search module with new keyword weighting and Rebuild Search Index tool.
We're really excited about Jamroom 5.3 and hope you find the new updates to be helpful and as awesome as we think they are. If you are the admin of a busy Jamroom site, the new updates - the streamlined Dashboard and new Spam Blocker module - should really help your ongoing support work.
If you would like to participate in the Jamroom 5.3 beta, make sure you subscribe to the "BETA" channel in your Jamroom Marketplace Module:
ACP -> Core -> Marketplace -> Tools -> Release Channels - Click on "Make Active" to the right of the "BETA" channel
This will enable you to browse and install Beta items in the Marketplace. After the change, going to the System Updates tab will show you the new Jamroom 5.3 release you can update too.
Make sure and join us in the Jamroom User Support forum with any Jamroom 5.3 questions and we can help.
We hope you enjoy Jamroom 5.3!
- The Jamroom Team