Dreamwidth changes from LJ

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Revision as of 13:10, 27 April 2009 by Jeshyr (Talk | contribs)

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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.

Already Done

We've also already completed the following:

  • The "friends" concept has been split into its two functions - "subscriptions" for the journals you read (these appear on your reading page), and "access" for people you allow to read your locked posts. (Access filters are currently in place. Reading filters will come shortly after open beta.)
  • Complete import of your personal account's contents from some other LJ-based journal services - including journal entries, comments, user icons, and profile details. Imports are currently working correctly with: LiveJournal, InsaneJournal, and JournalFen. Import from other services with a much older codebase will follow.
  • Increased length-limits on usernames, entries, comments, and polls. Removed word count limit on interests. Poll creator also has more sensible defaults.
  • Addition of another option on the "gender" field: instead of "female, male, unspecified", the choices are now "female, male, other, unspecified".
  • 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, except in the case of community maintainers, 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 "NSFW" (short for "Not Safe For Work") and "18+" so it's clear what they are and what they do. Users under the age of 18 will not be permitted to view 18+ material under any circumstances, users over 18 may opt out in their account settings. 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 people" 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.
  • The ability to upload more than one user icon at a time.
  • OpenID accounts have been extensively worked on so they have additional functionality and are easier to use.
  • Respect cut tags 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 a cut tag, in which case it'll only show the uncut portion with a link to read more.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • User icon page has a new field: description. This is used to add a text description of the content of the icon, and is used as "alt" text accessible by blind users and some other forms of assistive technology.
  • New account type for staff accounts, to only be used for staff business. These are clearly marked so people will always be able to know when someone they're talking to is site staff and functioning as such.
  • Renaming of LiveJournal-specific tags. The lj-user tag format is now <user name="username">, and the lj-cut tag is now simply <cut> or <cut text="Cut Text Here">. The old tags will still work, for those who don't want to memorise new versions.
  • Easier way to refer to people on other services -- now you can do <user name="username" site="livejournal.com"> and have it Just Work for any site.
  • 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 navigation strip to see the page you're looking at in ?style=mine and ?format=light options with a single click.
  • Added 'Track User' link to the navigation strip.
  • 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.
  • Bad Password Checking to make sure there are no ridiculously easy passwords.
  • Quick Reply Includes Preview Button. No extra steps needed.
  • Ability for a journal owner to distinguish between visible/screened comments.
  • Removed the last.fm music detection.
  • Updated LICENSE file in dw-free, including the addition of the dual-licensing option (GPL and Artistic) for code we wrote entirely ourselves and updating the copyright information for the files we forked from LJ.
  • Added 'Confirm Email' link to navigation strip for accounts with unconfirmed email addresses.
  • Added "random community" page, as well as the existing "random user" page, to help you find interesting active communities.
  • Twitter and Delicious fields are added to the profile.
  • LJTalk field only shows if you have it enabled.
  • 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.

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, 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.
  • The ability to set a maintainers-only security for posts in communities.
  • 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.