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Geek Proud, GeekOut.

GeekOut UK – Website Update #6

Whilst an update on our new website might not come to the forefront of your minds, I certainly feel like it’s been a while since I’ve had a significant update for everyone. Indeed, I usually only really provide an update when there’s been a big change and this time, I guess there kind of has been a big change to the new site. There’s quite a few changes to it in fact, which I think warrants a bit of attention.

New Features

Our classic GeekOut poster will be up for sale and more!

First off, our shopfront is working, so that’s nice. If you’ve ever wanted a GeekOut Poster for yourself, upon release of the new site you’ll be able to purchase an A3 poster for £5, which includes postage and packaging to mainland UK (Slightly more for further afield to cover P&P). We’ve started to come up with a new range of items which we’ll be offering, including mugs, coasters and t-shirts. Now you can drink tea or coffee in style with these geeky souvenirs. Great for the whole family – Or something like that. We’ll share more information on this when we get information through.

Second of all, we’ve got the profile section of the website to be more intuitive. We’ve been able to mess around with settings in our “community” plugin, Buddypress, which allows us to have a way cleaner looking section. When you click your Profile link, you’ll go straight to your wall, where you can see what activity you’ve been involved with. If someone clicks on your profile, they’ll be able to see information that you choose to share, as well as what forum activity you’ve been involved with, your badges and more.

An example of a users Badge Case, showing all the badges earned. Hovering over them allows you to see what the badge name is.

Finally, at the top of the page is the page taskbar. In here, you will be able to see your current XP, your Level number, a quick link to your profile, a quick link to the front page, a quick link to the forums and a logout button. Furthermore, it shows the title of the page that you’re currently looking at, so you (hopefully) never get lost. Finally, it shows you how many notifications you have outstanding. If you think the taskbar needs anything else, let us know! We’ll share more screenshots of that in the near future.

Fixed and Updated Features

Back to badges for a moment and hoo boy, this has been the trickiest part of the website. Now that it’s slowly coming together, the badges are rewarding and indeed, they reward users for using the site appropriately. If you take enough actions to level up, you’ll be rewarded a badge. The only time you can lose a badge is if a moderator deems it necessary (such as if you only earned a badge via spamming). The point system itself does penalise people for bad conduct, so watch out spammers!

By the next time I update you, I’d hope to have a fully finished website. The site currently works, but there are so many little things that still need tweaking. Nevertheless, I hope the UK Geek Events database goes down a treat and we can make it the UK’s most comprehensive list, which we aim to collaboratively keep up to date. We’ll also be reaching out to UK conventions to see if they’d like to have their own special badges on our website for when a user attends their events.

Whilst I hesitate to tell you when the website will be released, it’s certainly moving. If you’d like to join a small group of beta testers for the features of the new site, please hang tight and we’ll give you information on how to join up. If you’ve already confirmed to me that you’d like to beta test, you’ll be in anyway, but when it’s closer, we’ll be putting out a contact form for beta testers.

Thanks for bearing with me – It’s been a helluva ride and I feel like I’ve learned a lot about php, web standards, css and even MySQL in the process. Are you looking forward to the end result? Have you already got a million quips to share on the forums? If you’ve got any thoughts about the newly implemented features, share your thoughts in the comments below, or over on Facebook and Twitter.

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