Moving the forums to Markdown and Emojis 🥳

Posted on July 8, 2024 by: Rob van der Linde
Filed under: Announcements, Developments
Tags: wainuiomata, forum, website, emoji

It's been a while since I've posted an update about recent development progress. One thing we've just added might seem trivial, but it is an important step towards the goal of modernising the site. By moving from BBCode to Markdown in the forums and from the old smileys to proper Emojis.

BBCode is what we used on the old forums which were PHP, and when we moved to Python there was a real lack of BBCode libraries. There are only a couple, and these are poorly supported because nobody is really interested in BBCode anymore.

Any new threads or comments you start on the forum will now be using Markdown. There is no fancy Markdown editor just yet, but I have something in mind for that eventually.

The smileys have also been moved to Emojis which are a type of character rather than a gif image like before. They can be selected, copied and pasted just like normal text.

There were some checkboxes "use bbcode" and "use smileys", they have been removed as these have become redundant now with the move to Markdown and Emojis.

I'm well aware that the forums aren't really used anymore, that isn't the point. The point was the old BBCode library and smileys were holding the upgrade back and they can now be removed. We call this "technical debt" and I've just paid some of that off.

I also discovered a few bugs on the forum, some I fixed like signatures only showing on the top post, others I'm just in the middle of finishing off now and will come with a followup deployment a few days later.

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