Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Feature of the week: Group rebuild

Until this point, group handling in BibSonomy has been very awkward and not intuitive. Users could not leave their groups, the creation process was sturdy and slow and the administration interface wasn't exactly a nice sight.

But fear not, we did a great bunch of work on this. In the following, we will show you shortly how to request a group, invite users and request membership of a group. We will also cover a bit on the new group roles we introduced.

HowTo: Request a group

This has now been made easy as cake! Just click on the groups menu button in the blue navbar at the top and select create new group (see Fig 1).

Fig 1: There is a new option in the groups menu to request a new group.
You are then asked to enter a few details about your new group such as the name of the group, give a short description as well as a reason why you want to have that new group. (see Fig 2).
Fig 2: The form to request a new group
After submitting that form by clicking on request group, your request will be forwarded to the administrators who review it. When your request is accepted, you will receive a mail which leads you directly to the group settings menu.

HowTo: Administrate a group

You now are the proud administrator of a new group! It's time to adjust some settings and invite users! Either click the provided link in the group activation mail or navigate the menu to the group settings (see Fig 3).
Fig 3: Where to find the group settings menu
On the group settings page (Fig 4) administrators have full access to a range of options regarding their groups. You can alter the basic information like the full name of the group (e.g. kde turns into Knowledge and Data Engineering), the homepage or the privacy settings for all members of your group. This page will be extended by a great deal in the future.

Fig 4: The basic group settings

HowTo: Member management

But up to now you are the only member of the group. Unless you want it to stay boring you should invite users to join in your awesome team! Visit the member list tab on your group settings page (see Fig 5) and see that you as owner of the group are the only member.
Fig 5: The (still) empty member list
Inviting users is easy! Just type the name of a prospective member in the text field right under group invites and hit invite! The user will receive a mail and get notified on her settings page (where she can access all of your groups as well and can still share and unshare her personal documents with your groups). If you change your mind later, you can disband the group invite by simply deleting it.
Users can also request membership in your group on their own on the Join Group page An exemplary page with pending memberships can be seen in Fig 6.
Fig 6: The member list with join requests and invites

This should be enough for now for you to get a notion of our new groups system :) In future, we will focus in detail on different aspects like group roles or other features of the new group system.

Happy tagging :)


Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Release 3.1.0

Yesterday, we released BibSonomy version 3.10. This particular version marks the final milestone of our PUMA II Project. It includes several new features like

  • an editing history for posts
  • community posts - a new kind of publication or bookmark post that can be edited and improved by the community of all users, such that especially for publications the metadata can be completed or corrected
  • a complete overhaul of BibSonomy's group mechanisms, introducing group roles like group admin and group moderator, as well as a much easier way to request and to join new groups and to invite users
  • approved posts - users can now obtain the ability to approve the quality of a post's meta data and mark the post accordingly.
We also prepared the BibSonomy engine to create a joint search engine over all PUMA instances, such that PUMA users will be able to query all PUMA-instances at once instead of only their own.
We also improved our Pingback implementation, the sync api, and as always various scrapers.

Happy Tagging

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