is up and running once again

(For those who care — if you don’t, no worries! But as you might guess, is the domain.)

It had been down for a week’s worth of maintenance and upgrades, and they look quite great — Keith has this post detailing the changes:


* Some formatting changes, like this bulleted list and the ability to post YouTube embeds (see the formatting instructions for how to do this)
* An admin log
* Changed around the menu options to be in consistent locations throughout the application
* Promoted the use of ‘Site New Answers’. Note that you can configure this to show only the boards you want to, and to colour them in from preferences, or from the hyperlink on the header on the Site New Answers (or questions) page
* Configure board-specific shortcuts to add to your menu bar, from preferences
* Completely rewrote the search from the ground up to now use the database functions, but to be indexed separately. This lets me do far more and hopefully still run quickly enough to not bring to site to a grinding halt
* Shouldn’t be of interest to most, but the database is now InnoDB and not MyISAM, should remove data integrity issues, e.g. some broken threads, and threads that thought they were unanswered when they were not
* On that note, unanswered threads are shown in bold, like the good old days
* Hierarchical view of boards (the front page can be arranged with folders – idea was so that lots more boards would be possible; whether the mods think it’s reasonable or not is up to them)
* Polls can be disabled on a per-board basis
* Changeable display user names – see preferences
* Random threads – displays a list of twenty threads picked at random
* Most read threads – shows you the threads that have been read the most in the past hour
* Board admin functions allow unbans
* Mobile device interface – simple HTML that should work well on a mobile phone
* Invite only boards – someone might have a use for such a thing
* Default stylesheet has changed and has a variety of less colourful variations. The original one is still in there too. If you want something changed, then please make a new stylesheet and send it to me and I’ll install it. I improved the installation to not need a site stop/start, so if you send me a stylesheet, I can put it in place immediately
* On that note, lots has changed, and whilst I’ve tried to keep the stylesheets in line, there may be things missed in some of the non-standard ones, so please bear with me and please send me fixes where you see things that are broken
* When you post a new thread, the search engine looks to see if there are threads with similar titles, and gives you the option of tacking your post on to the end of another thread
* Show who last updated a thread on the new answers pages
* Stop Google indexing on a per-board basis
* Bookmarks are quite different – there’s no option to turn display of them on or off, but they only show on the screen if there are new answers on the bookmarked thread
* Subscribe to a board to receive email updates daily (could be useful for smaller boards); you can unsubscribe in preferences
* Improved history view of new answers etc. going back a month
* Remember your password – stores as an encrypted cookie on your computer and should prevent you needing to log in


There have been a lot of changes, so this will probably mean there will be a lot of bugs. In fact, the program code as it is now, is dramatically different from the older one, despite it not looking too different. Because of this, I will likely have to fix things and then restart ILX from time to time over the next few weeks. Why haven’t I spent a lot of time testing on the sandbox? One of the difficulties with ILX is that it is such a big website, with many users. Most problems don’t show up with fewer users, so the only real test (other than a very boring and complicated bunch of automated tests: if anyone wants to volunteer to do this, please let me know!) is to go live with it and deal with it as it happens, so please let me know if you see bugs.

So there you go. Have fun!


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