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Forum News

Here’s a bit of an update as to what’s going on with the forums. Work has been progressing on the forum, but we’ve run into some setbacks. The problem is trying to find a balance between the interface and features. My original plan when the site was relaunched was to eventually transition over to a forum with all the comments and entries carrying over. This is currently possible using the “Vanilla” web application which is compatible with Wordpress, however I can’t say I’m fond of the layout. It doesn’t follow the traditional forum layout and I find it a little confusing visually, like it’s a news feed page rather than a forum. Since the forums are something I plan to use as well, I want something my brain can process more easily.

The other main contender for the forums so far is phpBB. This has a layout I’m much more accustomed to, but I’ve been told it doesn’t have as many features and integration with all the current posts and user login information may not be possible. I’d really hate to ask people to create a new login AGAIN , so we’re still exploring the options. Ultimately it will come down to what I think will work the best for the long term.

To clarify some more, here are some screenshots I found of both forum layout styles:


While Vanilla does have forum categories on the right side and posts on the left, I feel like it doesn’t make the most use of the screen space and it might not be immediately obvious that this is a forum and not just more news posts.


This has a much more familiar forum style, makes more use of horizontal space, I generally like this kind of layout for a forum.

These aren’t necessarily the only two options for forum software. I also found an article which lists an absolute ton of forum plugin options, though I’m too web illiterate myself to know what’s best:


If anyone out there is knowledgeable about Wordpress and forum integration and is interested in helping, please contact Zachary Reidell ([email protected] ), who put a lot of the current website together and has been doing almost all the work on this so far. I’ll of course give credit to anyone else who helps get the final forum launched.

Also, I may as well announce now that I’m planning on phasing out comments here once the forums are launched. There are multiple reasons for this. With the forums, discussions will be more targeted. So if you have a specific question or comment, you won’t have to just reply to the latest news entry. Another reason is I think it will lower the redundancy of comments if there’s a primary place to comment in the forums as opposed to the homepage AND the forums. Finally, I’m getting more comments on the homepage now than ever before. Within a few days it’s in the hundreds, and as I make more videos it’s possible it will increase. Thus having actual forums will make things more manageable for me in the long run. My goal is to have all the news posts (hopefully past ones all the way back to 2006) duplicated as threads in the forum so commentary can continue there.

In other news, my voice is now better and I’ll resume working on Freeman’s Mind sometime tomorrow.


After waking up coughing about 20 times this morning, my voice may not be as well as I thought. I can talk normally, but I don’t know about parts where I have to shout yet. Unfortunately Freeman tends to shout a lot. I’ll see how things go.

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