Welcome To MGoBlog 3.0

Submitted by Brian on June 29th, 2008 at 9:26 PM

HELLO! New digs over here, but why do you care? This thing now runs on Drupal, a content management system that's designed to facilitate multi-user sites. It has many, many features, like:

Comment improvements. No more 300-comment threads full of drive-bys, first posters, and several people talking back and forth at each other without any guidance as to just what the hell is going on.

The new comments:

  • Can be restricted to registered users. I'm going to leave it open for a while to see how it goes, but if things get too annoying I'll lock out unregistered comments.
  • Prohibit handle-jacking. All unregistered commenters post as 'Anonymous Coward.'
  • Are more fuctional. A WYSIWIG editor allows you to bold, italicize, link, bullet, and indent without having to know any HTML.
  • Are local. This should allow them to be searched for in the future, and you can always find a user's entire comment ouevre on his user page.
  • Can be threaded or collapsed as you please.

Diaries. There is a species of Michigan blog akin to the mayfly. Inspired by this, that, or the other, a reader gets the idea he'll add his voice to the Michigan blogosphere, puts up a couple good posts, and then disappears once the overwhelming feeling of talking to himself is just too much.

These are invariably sad occurrences. Other times people just email me cool stuff, or leave excellent comments that really deserve a wider audience. When I miss these, they die on the vine.

Now registered users can maintain their own section of the site, where they can post whatever they want. SBNation calls these "FanPosts" and they're usually sparse and a little sad; DailyKos calls them "diaries" and there are frickin' millions of them. In any case, the idea is the same: post what you want. The tabbed section at the top of the right sidebar will track and link to various posts that are either new, popular, or "hot" -- commented on lots. If something is really good I might bump it to the front page, and if there's enough quality in that section there will be a regular (weekly? biweekly?) roundup.

Better organization. The old site's sidebar creaked ominously under the extreme pressure of thousands upon thousands of sidebar sections, links, and other cruft. Here, the really important site-usability stuff has migrated up into the navigation bar you see right below the banner, and the piles of links have migrated into flyout menus so that they don't take up too much screenspace when you're not looking for a Purdue blog.

A message board. Drupal comes with out-of-the-box message board software. It kind of sucks, but it works. I plan on doing something about it later, but for now there is a board, and it won't have any porn spam. Probably. It will remain a single board until such time as excessive off topic traffic drives people nuts, at which point there will be a schism.

The message board should be the place all OT talk goes. At some point the comments section exploded into an unmanageable mess and I stopped reading it because there were 500-800 comments every day, many of them about Gary Sheffield. I want to read the comments as long as they're relevant, and they will be relevant henceforth: offtopic posts are strongly discouraged and are subject to capricious deletion.

 

The future!

 

But that's not all, folks. Drupal is like a camel: if you beat it enough, it will take you anywhere. When I can find time (read: in January at the earliest), I plan on undertaking various other projects:

A recruiting wiki. Scouring the earth for every piece of information available on the dozens of kids Michigan recruits every year is a task that one man will necessarily leave incomplete. You can see evidence for yourself whenever Varsity Blue updates its recruiting board with 50% stuff I've never seen.

User-submitted photo galleries. Like diaries.

A Bittorrent tracker. Maybe. MGoVideo is up and has a good community around it, but I can't help but think it could be significantly larger and more comprehensive if it was part of this site.

Subscriptions. MGoBlog is and will always be totally free, but some people have expressed such enormous irritation with the banner ads -- though I do try to keep them under control -- that they'd prefer to buy their way out of them. I would love to provide this capability, and once certain add-ons provide versions for Drupal 6, I'll try to get it going.

User points. A big part of organizing a lot of information is providing ways for users to self-moderate the site; I hope to provide incentives for that.

Anything you can think of. I am open to suggestions.

One final item.

I've just hurled together an enormous amount of stuff labeled "beta" or even "alpha" and tested it... somewhat. There will no doubt be bugs. If there are, please email me and I'll get on it. Email me about bugs. Email about bugs. 

Send email if there are bugs. Dey tik er jeeeh.

Comments

ts

June 30th, 2008 at 6:04 AM ^

The my account thingy shows I'm logged in as other users. 

Edit: Sorry, I just noticed that Brian said (5 times) to email him with bugs.

SFBayAreaBlue

June 30th, 2008 at 4:54 AM ^

beveled buttons are cool, but I'm getting a white backgrown around the sidebars and the baby blue hot menus just don't do it for me. Need some borders there or something.

Anonymous Coward (not verified)

June 30th, 2008 at 5:59 AM ^

Brian... Been reading for a long time, commenting next to never... HOWEVER, I love the new look - Makes everything seem more professional and "legit." I'll be trusting you with my life as I travel Europe this fall and will have trouble accessing games and everything Blue. Don't let me down!!!!

Anonymous Coward (not verified)

June 30th, 2008 at 7:32 AM ^

You can take our off-topic posts, but you can never take our freeeeeeeedooom!

Anonymous Coward (not verified)

June 30th, 2008 at 8:07 AM ^

I can actually reach the comments section. This is a glorious victory for Mgoblog and the crap internet of the People's Republic of China.

Anonymous Coward (not verified)

June 30th, 2008 at 8:16 AM ^

Why do you still insist on listing the Notre Dame blogs with the Big Ten blogs? Oh, and thanks for including the Penn State blogs with the Big Ten blogs. Mike @ BSD

MRG

June 30th, 2008 at 8:23 AM ^

This must be what it was like the first time my Grandma used the internets. It's a confusing MGoEmpire full of possibilities and wonderment.

Anonymous Coward (not verified)

June 30th, 2008 at 8:41 AM ^

Super cool stuff man. I'll be interested to see how this improves the experience ...

sca1zi

June 30th, 2008 at 8:43 AM ^

One suggestion: Make users re-enter their email for verification. I'm stupid enough to enter a misspelled email, and now my preferred username is taken. Other than already mentioned stuff, this looks good.

Anonymous Coward (not verified)

June 30th, 2008 at 8:56 AM ^

Way to be, Brian. This is just as brilliant as 1st down - off tackle. 2nd down - draw play, and 3rd down - screen pass. Remember that Tennessee game? Forget about the score for a second, but remember how confused Tennessee was when I opened up the game with three straight off tackle runs? No? What about when I put Marquis in motion from the right side of the field to the left? Wasn't that inventive and forward-thinking? No? Hell with this.

SFBayAreaBlue

June 30th, 2008 at 11:20 AM ^

ookay, found it, but I had to try saving it like 5 times because the settings keep going back to default, I really am a noob, and hey, where'd all the mgoboard stuff go?  NAZI MODERATOR ALERT!! haha, but seriousy where'd it go?

Anonymous Coward (not verified)

June 30th, 2008 at 9:19 AM ^

Registered comments. Thank Christ. I no longer have any interest in the banner contest, because what more can be done? I wake up to a 3.5 day work week, a new RBUAS post, mgoblog 3.0, and I'm buying a house today. Not a bad way to start the week.

Anonymous Coward (not verified)

June 30th, 2008 at 9:19 AM ^

This site will look sooooo much better once Jason Minor's banner goes up....

Anonymous Coward (not verified)

June 30th, 2008 at 9:28 AM ^

I love you Brian...but the this site is just plain ugly! keep up the great content and hire someone to make this page look like a top rate college blog...not my sisters myspace page!

jamiemac

June 30th, 2008 at 9:30 AM ^

I, jamiemac, do solemnly swear to never swerve off topic and ramble on and on about the Pittsburgh Steelers, or start a de facto game thread in the comments section when the Steelers are on TV.....unless imafreak or mattk starts the discussion first!! But, I will openly discuss Larry Foote and Lamar Woodley (I smell a double digit sack season!) as they lead the black and gold this fall! Seriously, great site, you've put tons of work into and lets have some fun as the season nears!! Go Blue!

Anonymous Coward (not verified)

June 30th, 2008 at 9:32 AM ^

I love you brian...but the design of this site has to go. You bring the best content in the college football world, I think your site should look the part, instead of looking like my younger sisters myspace page! keep up the good content...hire someone to make this look good!

JeremyB

June 30th, 2008 at 9:32 AM ^

I no longer have any interest in the banner contest, not only because I'm out, but because what could the mgowish possibly be now? Registered comments? Check. More RBUAS? Check. Local, searchable content? Check. The wave of the future, Dude. 100% electronic.

Anonymous Coward (not verified)

June 30th, 2008 at 9:40 AM ^

Seeing 2 issues, anyone else seeing the same? 1) Trying to use openID, i use my yahoo user account and it tries to log me into MGoBlog, but it freesed on mgoblog.com/node ... 2) I signed up for an account on MgoBlog to just log in directly, only I do not seem to have received an account password in my yahoo mail account. Ive checked my spam, but nothing seems to jump out.. thoughts?

oriental andrew

June 30th, 2008 at 10:42 AM ^

I can post as myself, but the account info at the top of the page changes every time I refresh the page.  So far (since I noticed it), it has show umfan, derek, musketrebellion, cincygoblue.  I can only access my own account when I either manually update the url or click on my handle in a comment.

Joe

June 30th, 2008 at 9:53 AM ^

This is like a dream come true. Not only do we have a registered comment thread (DC Joe dropped the DC in light of an anticipated move), but now I have a new toy to waste the workday away with...