On February 19th we will perform an upgrade to our community platform. Content is a big focus for this release with designs that are simple, modern, and optimized for mobile. Each content type focuses on the most important functionality. In addition to content we are implementing the News feature which will impact the Navigation Bar and the Inbox/Activity Page.
News separates the "Inbox" from the "Activity". Inbox includes Inbox, Actions, and Moderation. The News page includes Activity, Recent Activity, Top & Trending Activity, and Custom Streams.
The Community News stream will be added for information about the GeoNet community. To start this would be blogs from GeoNet Help and the community manager. There will also be additional areas for helpful information and links.
With the addition of the New page the Map will be removed from the Navigation bar, your Inbox will be accessible from the notification icon, and Your Content and Your Places will be added to your profile drop down.
Prior to one of our previous updates every activity stream had little icons representing new activity in the stream. These icons showed 3 bars representing new activity in the stream (1 bar for 1-3 new activities, 2 bars for 3-9 new activities, and 3 bars for 10+ new activities). User research showed that most users has no idea what these icons meant, yet they were responsible for a tremendous amount of processing and performance challenges on the homepage. Jive Software removed them with the plans to reintroduce once they could implement them properly. We got a some feedback that existing users missed these indicators. I'm happy to announce that they are now available again with this upcoming release.
The new design simply shows an indicator of new activity for each stream. Hovering over that indicator will show the count of new activities since the user last viewed the stream. The activities in the count include likes, comments, edits, and creates. In a future release, we plan to show a breakdown of the types of activities that are new, rather than a single count.
Visually appealing blog posts that delight the viewer at first glance. One change you will instantly notice is the eye-catching banner image on top. This image will also be the primary photo that shows up as the post appears in news streams. We also switched to a fixed width column formatting which ensures high readability and same look-and-feel irrespective of screen resolution.
The content creation experience has also been modified to match the new blog post design, and other content type designs comes with a corresponding creation update as well.
Events new design also provides a banner image at the top and puts emphasis on the event details and the ability to attend the event. The breadcrumbs, actions, and related content links follow the same design pattern across all types.
Polls have been redesigned with an emphasis on the options and the ability to vote.
Discussions don't change much, but follow the new design pattern. Breadcrumbs and actions move to the top, related content moves below. The only other change is the separation of discussions and questions. They are now separate content types and can be accessed from the create menu.
Questions now appear as a separate type rather than an option on a discussion. This makes it easier to create and browse questions. There are no other changes to how questions work.
Documents gain the ability to be marked as helpful. They also get a full screen "presentation" mode both on view and create, to take advantage of large displays when working on tables or other embedded artifacts. As you scroll, the document header will collapse, helping keep context and quickly jump back to the document.