Dreamwidth changes from LJ
A list of things that have changed, or been added, from LiveJournal to Dreamwidth. (See also: LJ features not in Dreamwidth.)
For an example of the kind of development we're doing, you can read the 9 March 2009 Progress Report.
Aside from a number of backend fixes that are done to modernize the codebase, we've also already completed the following:
- The ability to upload more than one userpic at a time. When uploading userpics, you can choose to add another icon on the same page as you're uploading, so you can do all of your uploads at once instead of having to back up and add them one at a time.
- Addition of another option on the "gender" field: instead of "female, male, unspecified", the choices are now "female, male, other, unspecified".
- Fixing a few minor bugs that have always annoyed us: comment notification emails no longer strip single returns, and the entry preview will now respect the "don't use custom comment pages" option if the journal owner has it set. We've also checked in fixes that might (although we can't be certain) prevent problems with the on-page thread expander in the Safari browser and prevent situations where entries might not appear on friends pages/your reading list under certain very rare conditions.
- Respect lj-cut in RSS feeds: users can now set a new syndication level, in addition to "full", "title", and "summary", and if the "ljcut" syndication level is selected, it will show full posts in that user's RSS feed unless that post is behind an lj-cut, in which case it'll only show the uncut portion with a link to read more.
- The allpics.bml page will be paginated for better load times; when you go over a certain number of userpics on the page, it will automatically split into several pages. (We haven't decided yet what that number will be, but it will be useful if we decide we can offer a tremendously high number of userpics.)
- Add a warning while deleting your account if you're the maintainer of a community, reminding you to select a new maintainer for the community.
- Retooling the "Adult Concepts" warning system and self-identification. We're removing the ability for people to flag other people's posts and comments for age-appropriateness review, but we are keeping the ability for people to self-restrict their content if they want to. "Adult concepts" and "graphic adult material" have been renamed "14+" and "18+" (since that's how they function in the code) so that there's no doubt about what they are and what they do. There won't be any penalty for failing to use these features, but this way people who want to use them will be absolutely certain about what they restrict.
- Allowing users to describe why they chose the particular adult-content setting they chose, so you can (for instance) say "NSFW for image of naked boobies" or "18+ for violent content", etc. This works for both individual entries and for your whole journal, so if you set your entire journal to 18+, you can make the click-through say "this journal contains frequent nude images", or whatever else you want.
- Tweaks to the logic of when the navigation strip is shown to you, so that it becomes a viewing preference and not a style preference: you choose when and where you want to see it and no one can override that for you.
- Better alt-text descriptors for userpics (to increase accessability for visually-impaired users).
- New account type for staff accounts: much like how sponsored communities on LJ display a different community head when the <lj user> tag is used to refer to them, staff accounts will display a different head as well. That means that people will always be able to know when someone they're talking to is site staff and functioning as such.
- "Friends list" split into two conceptually-separate lists - "list of people whose journals I read" and "list of people that can read my locked posts".
- Complete import of your account's contents from any other LJ-based journal service.
- Increased length-limits on usernames, entries, comments, and polls.
- Removed word count limit on interests.
- Fixes and cleanup for OpenID identity accounts to make it clearer what they can and can't do.
- Added an alias to the ?show parameters of the Reading List: now you don't have to remember that username.dreamwidth.org/read/?show=Y is syndicated accounts; you can also use ?show=F (for 'feeds').
- Added "random community" page, as well as the existing "random user" page, to help you find interesting active communities.
- Easier way to refer to people on other services -- now you can do <lj user=username site=livejournal.com> and have it Just Work.
- Upgraded the spellcheck option and added support for custom dictionaries, so we can add in commonly-used terms that aren't in the dictionary already and neologisms that come from the community.
- Added links to the navstrip to see the page you're looking at in ?style=mine and ?format=light options with a single click.
- Streamlined process for creating new accounts.
- Lynx site scheme now displays whether you're logged in, and name of logged in account.
- Explicitly license our FAQs under a Creative Commons BY-SA 3.0 license so other sites can use the documentation we write.
By Open Beta
- Better cross-site functions: better OpenID comment management, etc.
- Completely redone S2 (journal customization) system, along with the standardization of options across all styles and much better CSS markup (so you can more easily customize your journal just by using CSS, without having to learn S2).
- Community maintainers will be able to make certain changes to posts made to their communities: adding an <lj-cut> to a post that doesn't already have one, selecting a more restrictive security level (changing public to members-only; changing members-only to maintainers-only, etc), selecting a more restrictive adult-content warning (none to 14+; 14+ to 18+).
- New paid user feature: Google Analytics integration, so you can choose to add your Google Analytics code to your journal and get reports on where your readers are coming from.
After Open Beta
Many of our priorities for feature additions, usability changes, bugfixes, and enhancements will be set after launch when we see how people are using the site. Here's a list of some of the projects that we hope to add, during our first year of operations or shortly thereafter:
- Some kind of main account/alternate account system, so that you can (invisibly and privately) designate one of your accounts as the "parent" account and all other accounts inherit that account's settings unless specifically overruled. (Thus making it easier to, for instance, change your viewing preferences or settings for all your accounts with one click.) This will also improve the "work as other user" drop-down, so you can select userpics while commenting as one of your other accounts, post to a community more easily with a sub-account while logged into your main account, etc.
- The ability to schedule posts, so you can write posts now and have them appear in the future, such as for when you're on vacation, etc.
- The ability to save and manage draft posts on-server, so you can have multiple posts in progress at once. Bugzilla 29
- The ability to create separate "archive pages" for your journal's "greatest hits", for specific tags, etc, etc, that will display the subject line and a brief description of each post all in one place and in an order of your choosing. Bugzilla 34
- The ability to export your journal's contents as a nicely-formatted .pdf file, for easy printing (and binding!). Bugzilla 32
- Killfile support, so that you can browse the site without seeing community posts or comments in other journals that your archnemesis may have made. Bugzilla 35
- A complete overhaul of the Memories function, allowing you to both more easily add other people's posts to your site-wide bookmarks and browse other people's site-wide bookmarks via tag. (Think del.icio.us-style operation: you'll have the ability to save bookmarks as public or private, browse all public bookmarks from a specific user, browse all public bookmarks from all users using a specific tag, etc.). Bugzilla 210
- An improved to-do list, allowing for better task management.
- And, of course, miscellaneous bugfixes and usability enhancements to update, modernize, and streamline existing features that haven't gotten any love in a long time, or to fix what we consider wrong or incorrect behavior or design.