Removing deprecated code

Nao

  • Dadman with a boy
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Removing deprecated code
« on May 6th, 2011, 05:09 PM »Last edited on February 20th, 2012, 03:09 PM by Nao
Feature: Removing deprecated code
Developer: Arantor & Nao
Target: admins, modders, themers
Status: 99% (believed to be complete, but it's a never-ending feature implementation because of its very nature.)
Comment:

We believe that software should live in the present, not in the past. Libraries that were deprecated years ago should not be supported anymore, because they mean overhead, bloat, and usually prevent developers from using new features, for fear of breaking something on older platforms. Because some people are too afraid of "fixing what isn't broken", they're still using PHP 4.x and MySQL 4.0 these days.
They shouldn't be afraid.
So we removed support for PHP < 5.1.2, MySQL < 4.1.2, and are requiring support for the GD2 graphics library (which shouldn't be a problem in 99% of the cases.)
Dozens of other minor libraries, functions and programming methods that didn't belong in this age were also deprecated, such as support for the Wap, Wap2 and iMode wireless modes, the boardmod installation system for add-ons, or older SMF1 compatibility code.

Re: Removing deprecated code
« Reply #76, on June 22nd, 2011, 06:43 PM »
Quote from Arantor on June 22nd, 2011, 05:48 PM
That's the thing: the admin panel is still very much in flux.
That I'm perfectly fine with! The admin panel is for a few eyes only. What I care more about is how the average user experiences the site. With that said, I agree that there's room for improvements on both sides of that bar.
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There will be a LOT more in it than there is in SMF's, simply because we've added more to it than we have taken out.
:yahoo:
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You've said that you see a problem with the look and layout options. What problem do you see? How would you resolve it?
Now I've personally used SMF so much that I'm probably a bit biased. I'll check with what my forumgoers say and try to forward what they've had the most problems with. Some of these things are probably just things I have opinions on, but I'll try to ground them in reason. Some are small problems some are big.

Let's start from the top:

1. Drop down menus. The problem is not so much that there are drop down menus, it's more that thee content in them can be ambiguous. For example, the first time you register, and you want to change your theme, where do you go? In the beginning you'll probably be looking for something called "settings" or "control panel", maybe you'll scroll down to the bottom of the page to check if there's a dropdown menu for it, as it is on many boards. When you don't find it there you'll look further. Could your settings be under "Profile", maybe? Yes. Yes they could. So you click account settings and what do you see?

(click to show/hide)
Just an example.

You're getting confused. Where can I change my theme? If you are an inquiring mind you might just hover over modify profile long enough to find look and layout.

Thank God. You're there. The same problem develops if you want to change the default setting of " Return to topics after posting by default." or "Messages to display per page:"

This problem is to a big extent fixed when you use the "sidebar menus" instead of dropdown menus whenever possible, but there might be better solutions...

I'll be back with more about this later. Right now: Dinner time. ;)
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I have my own ideas, some of which are fairly controversial on the subject of pruning the admin panel, so let's start on a smaller area...
I'd love to hear more. Ideas can be fascinating, even though I personally am a firm believer of good execution > good ideas. :)

Re: Removing deprecated code
« Reply #77, on June 22nd, 2011, 07:43 PM »
I am on normally hosting in the Netherlands.

PHP: 5.2.17   
MySQL: 5.0.91-community-log

Re: Removing deprecated code
« Reply #78, on June 22nd, 2011, 07:56 PM »
Quote from Norodo on June 22nd, 2011, 06:43 PM
For example, the first time you register, and you want to change your theme, where do you go?
You know, I always have trouble finding the theme switcher, even though I'm not exactly a noob :P
I even have one entry in my to-do list -- that basically says, "build a styling switcher somewhere on every page". Before I do this, I'll have to cache styling entries because right now it scans folder to find them (which allows me to manipulate stylings easily and without fear of any caching problems.)

But as you see... It's something we're aware of.
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Thank God. You're there. The same problem develops if you want to change the default setting of " Return to topics after posting by default." or "Messages to display per page:"
"Return to topics", that's a big one... I've always been annoyed by this. When you write a post, you want to make sure it's live, and it looks like what you want.
I probably mentioned it in the feature list somewhere, but Wedge checks this setting by default. :)
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This problem is to a big extent fixed when you use the "sidebar menus" instead of dropdown menus whenever possible, but there might be better solutions...
Sidebar menus have UI issues just the same. I'm the one who pushed for a sidebar, but I'm not in a hurry to use it everywhere. For instance, Noisen and Wedge.org use a fully developed menu in the profile sidebar. Heck, I always get lost in it, and wish for the dropdown menu to come back...

Re: Removing deprecated code
« Reply #79, on June 22nd, 2011, 08:15 PM »
Quote from Nao/Gilles on June 22nd, 2011, 07:56 PM
But as you see... It's something we're aware of.
I'm glad you are. I'm not trying to "force" my vision on you, simply trying to answer Aranators post.
(click to show/hide)
Quote from Arantor on June 22nd, 2011, 05:48 PM
What problem do you see? How would you resolve it?

So please don't take this the wrong way. I'm just laying out what I think is done badly today. If you want me to stop yapping that is fine too. :)
Quote from Nao/Gilles on June 22nd, 2011, 07:56 PM
Sidebar menus have UI issues just the same.
Yeah I was hinting to this when I said:
(click to show/hide)
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This problem is to a big extent fixed when you use the "sidebar menus" instead of dropdown menus whenever possible, but there might be better solutions...

Maybe there's a better place here to post my musings? Hmm.


Re: Removing deprecated code
« Reply #81, on January 31st, 2012, 05:21 PM »
Well, it won't be available on a large scale for a few years, so it won't change anything to our requirements... Right now, it's 5.2.3.


Re: Removing deprecated code
« Reply #83, on March 1st, 2012, 10:32 PM »
No, they won't upgrade yet. There are still hosts running 5.2 which is a few years old as it is.

Re: Removing deprecated code
« Reply #84, on March 1st, 2012, 10:58 PM »
So, they're adding mixins (like WeCSS but for objects :P), and JavaScript-style short arrays? That's not a lot, but it's stuff that I can see people using. Too bad I can use $arr = [0,1] right now in PHP 5.2 :P

Re: Removing deprecated code
« Reply #85, on March 1st, 2012, 11:02 PM »
Decent mixin support is more than long overdue in PHP (though depending on what you're doing it can be very fragile and break in unexpected ways), though it has of course been possible to implement in various interesting ways.

Short arrays? *shrug* I have to say I'm just not that 'gimme RIGHT NOW' about 5.4, whereas 5.3 brought stuff that was immediately useful.


Re: Removing deprecated code
« Reply #87, on March 1st, 2012, 11:21 PM »
Not that we use them much, but late static binding's quite a draw, better support for closures too, and the garbage collector's smarter when it comes to cyclic references (which helps deal with memory leaks)

On a smaller note, 5.3 also brought mysqlnd as a replacement under the hood for the old libmysqlclient connector, which aside from solving a messy licensing issue is actually faster and cleaner.