The Admin's Blog 🇬🇧

Each user can create one blog as a topic here and post in it, other users can subscribe to, read and comment the blogs or ask questions in them.
Notice for this Part of the Forum:
  1. This forum section is only for user blogs, do not create any other kind of topics here!
  2. To start a blog, create a topic with your username as or in its title, such as "XY's Blog" or simply "XY", where XY stands for your username.
    As the post text, only enter a short description of your blog (even "This is my blog." would suffice).
  3. Once you've created a blog, you can publish blog entries by using the Reply function in your blog topic.
  4. To follow blog authors, simply subscribe to their blog topic/thread.
  5. When commenting another user's blog, also for instance to ask questions, keep it short and be respectful to the blog owner.
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User avatar
Molaskes
Community Admin
Community Admin
Posts in topic: 6
Posts: 301
Joined: 210729 Thu 2022
Nickname(s): The Voice of Reason
CDW: ✅ Count me in!
My democracy level: SDG (12-19)
Profile news headline: Think Tank Launch | Think-Tank-Start

The Admin's Blog 🇬🇧

#1

Post by Molaskes »

Here you can follow the admin's thoughts and projects.

Each entry here is mirrored by a German translation in: viewtopic.php?t=11.
Last edited by Molaskes on 240216 Fri 1850, edited 6 times in total.
User avatar
Molaskes
Community Admin
Community Admin
Posts in topic: 6
Posts: 301
Joined: 210729 Thu 2022
Nickname(s): The Voice of Reason
CDW: ✅ Count me in!
My democracy level: SDG (12-19)
Profile news headline: Think Tank Launch | Think-Tank-Start

Making phpBB's Bookmarks Useful | 210820

#2

Post by Molaskes »

Having created this User Blogs forum and then my own blog, I set the topic as a bookmark — and then I couldn't find where to access bookmarks other than in {Your Username} > User Control Panel > Manage > Manage bookmarks, which totally contradicts the very idea of what bookmarks are.

In the phpBB (the forum board software this Community is built on) support forums I then found that this issue has been reported more than 10 years ago at least, but the developers ignored it.

So I had to hack the solution myself together, and now this Community is in all likelihood one of the very few phpBB-based websites, if not the only one, that has a fully useful bookmarks function, simply by the link that I added right after the Quick links option.

Here's what I did:
  1. In ./styles/prosilver/template/navbar_header.html I inserted the following block as the second <li>, before the U_FAQ (you can search for this keyword to find the position the fastest) <li> block:

    Code: Select all

        <!-- IF S_REGISTERED_USER -->
        <li>
          <a href="./ucp.php?i=ucp_main&mode=bookmarks">
            <i class="icon fa-bookmark fa-fw" aria-hidden="true"></i><span>{L_NAV_BOOKMARKS}</span>
          </a>
        </li>
        <!-- ENDIF -->
    
  2. In all ./language/{language-code}/common.php I added a new entry (anywhere within the list is okay):

    Code: Select all

      'NAV_BOOKMARKS' => '{caption}',
    
    with {caption} standing for "Bookmarks" in English and "Lesezeichen" in German (without the quotes).
It is as simple as that, and can be used by any phpBB admin to significantly improve the usability of their boards, and should in fact have been implemented as a default solution by the phpBB developers right from the start.
Last edited by Molaskes on 210913 Mon 1326, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
Molaskes
Community Admin
Community Admin
Posts in topic: 6
Posts: 301
Joined: 210729 Thu 2022
Nickname(s): The Voice of Reason
CDW: ✅ Count me in!
My democracy level: SDG (12-19)
Profile news headline: Think Tank Launch | Think-Tank-Start

Bugfixed phpBB's Notifications | 211031

#3

Post by Molaskes »

This Community website is based on the free phpBB software, which is okay to use, but riddled with bugs despite being quite a long time around already, and in heavy widespread use.

This blog entry is only of interest for other phpBB admins (and should be for the phpBB developers, but they are infamous for being arrogant and ignorant and not fixing issues since decades, so I don't even bother contacting them).

Here's yet another bug I found recently, and its fix:

The bug: When you got some notifications and open the notifications dropdown list, the last line says "See all". But when you click on that link, you do not go to the full list of notifications, but to your notifications settings. (This may only happen when the notifications list was moved in the ACP Admin Control Panel > System > Module Management > User Control Panel to a non-default UCP tab. Either way, it's a bug.)

The fix: In ./includes/functions.php the key U_VIEW_ALL_NOTIFICATIONS is incompletely defined. By default it reads:

Code: Select all

'U_VIEW_ALL_NOTIFICATIONS' => append_sid("{$phpbb_root_path}ucp.$phpEx", 'i=ucp_notifications'),
Extend this to:

Code: Select all

'U_VIEW_ALL_NOTIFICATIONS' => append_sid("{$phpbb_root_path}ucp.$phpEx", 'i=ucp_notifications&amp;mode=notification_list'),
User avatar
Molaskes
Community Admin
Community Admin
Posts in topic: 6
Posts: 301
Joined: 210729 Thu 2022
Nickname(s): The Voice of Reason
CDW: ✅ Count me in!
My democracy level: SDG (12-19)
Profile news headline: Think Tank Launch | Think-Tank-Start

Support E-Mail Spam Protection | 220425

#4

Post by Molaskes »

As the admin of a phpBB-based forums community, you get flooded with spam sent through the Contact the Admin form, a serious issue that has never been fixed by the phpBB developers.

Today I got fed up too much with it and finally coded a protective hack that any phpBB admin can use for themselves as well. The idea is very simple: We whitelist all URL domains that we accept in support request emails, which will usually be the forum community's own URL domain plus maybe some other URL domains of ourselves that the users may want to mention. This will catch any non-whitelisted URLs with optional subdomain prefixes (e.g. www. or whatever.) and optional protocol prefixes (like http:// or https:// or ftp:// or whatever://), even if they're written like "spam . com" or "spam dot com".

Edit the file ./phpbb/message/admin_form.php so that after the block

Code: Select all

		if (!$this->body)
		{
			$this->errors[] = $this->user->lang['EMPTY_MESSAGE_EMAIL'];
		}
(simply search for "empty_message")

you enter the following block,
where you replace "my_url1.tld" with your actual URL domain
and can add any number of lines like that with further URL domains:

Code: Select all

    # SPAM PROTECTION by Molaskes, 2022
    $myurls=[]; # white list
    $myurls[]="my_url1.tld";
    $spam=0;
    $whitelist=implode("|",$myurls);
    $whitelist=str_replace(".","\.",$whitelist);
    $whitelist="~^(\w+://)?([\w-]+\.)?($whitelist)~i";
    preg_match_all("~\S+(\s*\.\s*|\s+dot\s+)\w{2,4}(\W|$)~",$this->body,$urls);
    foreach($urls[0]as$url){
      if(!preg_match("~^(\w+://)?([\w-]+\.)?($whitelist)~i",$url))$spam=$url;
    }
    if($spam!==0)$this->errors[]="DO NOT SPAM!<br>Remove the URL <em>$url</em>.";
Last edited by Molaskes on 230729 Sat 0117, edited 3 times in total.
User avatar
Molaskes
Community Admin
Community Admin
Posts in topic: 6
Posts: 301
Joined: 210729 Thu 2022
Nickname(s): The Voice of Reason
CDW: ✅ Count me in!
My democracy level: SDG (12-19)
Profile news headline: Think Tank Launch | Think-Tank-Start

Building the Best World Forum | 230519

#5

Post by Molaskes »

I recently transformed the "Future Democracy Community" into the "Best World Forum", including a new URL, http://BWF.solutions.

I moved several topics and subforums around (nothing has been deleted, of course!), and replaced the old think tank forums category with the new, perfectly structured new think tank forums category. I also improved many things about the design. The source for this website is the free phpBB software, which offers the functionality you need for a forums community, but is full of nasty errors in design and concept, which take a lot of expertise, and a lot of work, to overcome. I'm quite certain that this online community here is one of the very best phpBB websites ever, and I hope it will get used by many more people than it has been so far.

I'm still very busy with many other things, but over the course of the next months, the Best World Forum, including its core, the open public think tank for a better world, shall be fully built up.
Last edited by Molaskes on 230729 Sat 0107, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
Molaskes
Community Admin
Community Admin
Posts in topic: 6
Posts: 301
Joined: 210729 Thu 2022
Nickname(s): The Voice of Reason
CDW: ✅ Count me in!
My democracy level: SDG (12-19)
Profile news headline: Think Tank Launch | Think-Tank-Start

The New Think Tank Is Ready | 240219

#6

Post by Molaskes »

I jsut finished the Knowledge Base for the Think Tank (see http://PDF.en.BWF.solutions). With that, both the Think Tank and also the Best World Forum have been fully prepared and are now ready for actually being used.
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