What's in store for the next version? (v2.3.0)

Tuesday, April 8, 2014 Tags: preview

(Updated 11 Apr 2014) It's been a while since the last update to Exponent...which was the plan.  Several users were having to spend an inordinate amount of time continually updating their sites to the latest version, so we've slowed down our version updates from monthly to between quarterly and semi-annually (every 3 to 6 months).  Hopefully, the 2014 Wish List article whetted your appetite for what will actually hit the streets later this spring.  Because we'll be implementing MANY new features, we've also decided to bump minor versions. Here's some of the things you can look forward to in v2.3.0.

New WYSIWYG Editor Option - we've successfully integrated TinyMCE into Exponent with all the features we currently offer using CKEditor.  Each of these editors are similar, however TImyMCE is available on Android devices where we won't see that feature in CKEditor for several versions yet.

New File Manager Option - we've successfully integrated elFinder into Exponent with all the features we currently offer using the traditional File Manager/Uploader.  This new file manager works similar to most operating system file managers and integrates file uploading into the file manager itself (instead of using a separate view).  What's more, the file manager reflects the files stored on the server instead of simply those added to the database.  We now even offer real folders/subfolders for easier file organization.  elFinder provides built-in image resizing, cropping, & rotation support with access to a full featured online image editor (Pixlr).  elFinder will eventually replace the traditional file manager.  Stay tuned for an upcoming blog post on how to transition users to using the new file manager.

Better Mobile/Touch Support - we've implemented several updates which allow your site to be more mobile and touch friendly including a new touch enabled slideshow view.  For Twitter Bootstrap we also provide some 'responsive' table support which limits the number of display columns based on the width of the display.

Much Improved Table Displays - we've added a new 'table' widget to the users, groups, permissions, and forms showall view which allows you to better filter/search through these possibly long and paged lists.  It also allows for easy printing, copying, or exporting of displayed table data.

Websnapr Link Thumbnail Option - you'll now be able to optionally add a web site thumbnail to links within the link module, courtesy of a free Websnapr account.

Search/Filter FAQ or Portfolio Items Option - you'll now be able to add an optional search box to your Frequently Asked Questions or Portfolio modules which will allow the user to filter out/locate a specific item dynamically.

Updated jQuery Widgets - we've updated the 'widgets' used to display tags, calendars, & list builders for the Twitter Bootstrap based themes which can optionally be added to other themes by simply adding/changing that theme's 'framework' to jQuery.  We're also using a new color picker (defaults to built-in browser color picker) and lightbox widget.

Improved SEO for Blogs, Events, Event Registrations, and Products - we've added Google+ author support to blog posts.  And event & product data (dates, cost, reviews, etc...)  is now available to search engines as rich snippets.  And we are also providing  more accurate meta data across the board to search engines.

New Module Item Import/Export Feature - we still support site database backup and restoration (replaces the existing database), but now can offer the export and import of individual module items (merges with the existing database) within the Blog, News, and Portfolio modules.

Module Selectable Heading Levels - we've added an option to each module to set the heading level (h1, h2, h3, etc...) for the module and item titles.  While on the surface it affects the display, it is of greater use to tailoring site SEO.

Plus literally several hundred other updates and fixes!  At this point we've still not decided to include the 'workflow' and 'Twitter Bootstrap 3' features in this next version, though both have become pretty robust.  We still lack some implementation details such as: 1) which modules in addition to the text module to make 'workflow' enabled, and 2) development/integration of a new Twitter Bootstrap 3 styled slingbar (exponent menu) and chrome (module menu).

Update 11 Apr 2014:  The workflow code has been integrated into the pre-release branch of code, so it will be included in the v2.3.0 release.  Workflow has been enabled in the Blog, News, & Text modules.