As you can see there are many changes that have taken place with this newest update to the website. Our goal was to try and make better use of the screen space, reduce overall advertising and make the pages more consistent for both members and guests alike. We wanted to give the site an updated look and feel while still maintaining the comfort level many of you have from being with us over the years. We feel like we have accomplished that and while it may take a little bit to get used to, you'll soon grow familiar with all the changes and see that this is a more functional version of the site overall.
Here's a list of changes in 5.0:
Both free and unlimited members can now create their own blogs which will display on their profile page. You can update your blog as often as you'd like and other members can subscribe to your blog. We've created a MY BLOGS page where you can manage your own blog and also see which blogs have been updated recently. HTML is allowed in blogs so feel free to add links, pics and more.
ENHANCED PRIVATE MESSAGES
We did a lot of work on our private messages area. Everyone has received TWICE the inbox space and you can now see which messages you have read, replied to and forwarded. We've also created a 'SAVED' box so you can protect messages from being deleted and move them out of your inbox.
ENHANCED MESSAGE BOARDS
We've made a few changes to our message boards. We've added a 'leaderboard' on the main boards page with the names of our most frequent posters. We've also made enhancements to messages, puting more emphasis on avatars and CHU links. A new board was added for reporting problems or leaving feedback. Each message now has a 'report post' link where you can flag it for moderation. Mods can now choose to impose a post count penalty on any user found breaking our message board rules. Lastly, we added some new smilies and also increased the size of a single message from 4000 to 6000 chars.
We've made many changes to the user profile pages. You can now choose a profile header pic to give your profile a 'theme' and also choose which sections people will see when visiting your profile. These options can be managed from the EDIT PROFILE link next to your avatar in the CHU dashboard. Currently, custom header pics will only be available for users on special occasions (such as winning a CHU contest) but we may eventually allow Unlimited members and authors to have a custom header pic. We'll add new pics frequently to make sure there are plenty of different ones to choose from. Personal comment space has also been increased from 500 to 1000 chars.
CHOOSE YOUR OWN RANK
Previously you didn't have a choice which rank was displayed along with your avatar on our boards and in your profile. Certain titles would always override others. We've now given users the ability to choose which rank they prefer to display. So, if you're an AUTHOR, and UNL MEMBER and have been at the site for over a year (which earns the rank of VETERAN) you can now choose between the three ranks. You'll find this new setting in the EDIT PROFILE area. Change it as often as you'd like.
CHEAT HAPPENS UNLIMITED DASHBOARD
We decided to eliminate the sidebar which had a lot of unused space on most pages and move the CHU menu items to the top of the screen where they are more accessible. We call this new area the DASHBOARD. It will now be easier to add titles to your tracker list and update your favorite boards as the dashboard will work on any of the title's pages.
Many people are visiting the site for our customized trainers that are created and updated on a near daily basis. We decided to create a new page so that people could easily browse our trainer library and see which ones have been added or updated.
You can now rate any of the wallpapers at the site from 1-5 stars. You'll see the rating next to each wallpaper along with how many people have voted on it.
We've created two RSS feeds, one for cheat updates and one specifically for trainer updates. Now you can keep up with updates in your favorite RSS reader without having to visit the site.
We've eliminated several banner ads across the site. No more popups and those with a free account will see nearly no advertising at all. As always, Unlimited members will surf completely advertisement free.
We've refreshed many of the graphics at the site, including avatars, print book cover pages, smilies and more.
OTHER MISCELLANEOUS ENHANCEMENTS
We've made many more small changes to the site. From easier message board searches to improved navigation site-wide. Almost every page at the site has had some cosmetic or functional enhancements made.
What DIDN'T make it into 5.0?
We've been working hard for months to get the site upgraded and didn't quite have time to finish a couple of projects. Here's what you can expect SOON as additional 5.0 features:
MESSAGE BOARD POLLS
Users will have the ability to create a POLL within the message boards. Add your choices and let other users vote. You decide when the voting should be closed and the results will be posted.
PM IGNORE LIST
Tired of getting PMs from a certain user? No problem, simply add them to your ignore list and you won't receive any more messages from that user. We may also create a 'DO NOT DISTURB' option which will block everyone from sending you a PM while it's on.
We know that many people were hoping for both an AUTHORS ONLY board and/or some sort of instant messaging. We decided that both of these features would end up taking the focus away from our public message boards. If everyone started posting in the AUTHOR ONLY board to escape the 'newbs' then the number of new users would start the diminish and that doesn't help anyone. Everyone was a 'newb' at one time or another. Hopefully our new report post function and post count penalties will deter spammers. At some point we may give users the ability to create a 'private' message board within the site but we want to promote the use of our public message boards as much as possible.
That's it folks. We hope you enjoy the new v5.0 as much as we do and we'll continue working to improve the site even further over the coming weeks. Time to start thinking ahead to v6.0!
P.S. -- If anyone find any bugs or non-working pages, please send me a PM or post it on the new Feedback, Problems and Complaints board.
If any of the new graphics or menus look funny, please clear your browser cache or press CTRL+[F5] to make sure you get the newest version of the site's files.
[Edited by PWizard, 11/20/2007 4:16:54 PM]