Dusty (User)

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New N4G site and Newsboiler network goes live

Dusty | 1445d ago
User blog

Welcome to the brand new N4G website. What you see in front of you is something we have been working on for some time now and it feels good to finally be able to show you all what we have been working on for the past 18 months. I also like to apologize for the few extra days we had to keep N4G closed. We ran into some unexpected difficulties after importing the old N4G that prevented us from opening the site on Tuesday.

This project turned out to be a lot more challenging than we had first thought when we started planning it almost two years ago. To make a long story short ; big complicated project, small dev team, mistakes were made, had to redo a lot of stuff, moving a website the size of N4G into a completely new system does not go without its fair share of problems.

The new site runs on a social news platform we have developed called Newsboiler, based on the N4G concept, but coded completely from scratch. We have kept many things similar to how the old site worked, but added improvements based on your feedback. New features and improvements will also be added in the coming weeks/months once we know the core functionality of the site works. Here is list of changes and improvements that will be available from day one.

New look:
We decided to go for a simple design which has focus on content. Many of you visit N4G many times per day, so we felt a fancy design will just get in the way of what really matters; the news stories. I have been using the design for a couple of months now and personally I feels it works very well for what the purpose of the site is. There are still some polishing that can been done, as some of the design elements are a bit ruff in some areas, but we will do this when we get the technical issues sorted out.

Navigation:
We have put a lot of thought into the navigation of the new site trying to make it very simple yet powerful. If we have succeeded I guess is up to you to decided, and we are ready to make improvements based on your feedback. There are also many minor navigational improvements that will be added shortly has we did not have time to fix everything before launch but we are quite happy with the core structure, which is similar to the old N4G in many ways.

Speed:
As soon as we have been able to do some tuning with actual traffic the new site should be faster than the old site, or at least that is what we are hoping.

Submission process:
The new submission process is made a lot simpler and faster.

New Tags system:
More powerful tag system, as you can now relate news not only to games but also to companies and people.

Source Index:
This is one of my favorite new features. You are now able to find stories per sources, as well as rate both sources and their stories.

Rumor voting:
This is also a simple but neat new feature. All rumors will now have a poll for you to vote true or false.

New PM system:
A new simple but more effective PM system.

Social futures:
There will be more advanced social futures added later, but you can now add friends and also a status update to your profile.

Pending News:
Improved reporting system, over all easier to use. If the pending section starts filling up contributors will be forced to approve a certain number of sorties for every 5 story submitted. Stories without reports that stay in the pending for a certain amount of time without getting approvals will gradually need fewer approvals to help with keeping a more constant flow of news. Only contributors will now be able to report stories.

Comment Section:
No more OpenZone. A new bubbe voting system for giving feedback about your fellow N4G user. Comments can now get both a positive and negative statuses based on community votes. Comments receiving a lot of negative feedback will collapse and can no longer be replied to. The system is now also harder to game, and all accounts have been reset to 3 bubbles which is the new default. The old system was badly abused so setting all accounts to the same starting point was necessary for the new system to work. You can now also reply to a reply which can come in handy.

Less Ads:
We have decided to give all members who are logged in a version with less advertisement. This should make the site easier to work with when being an active member.

Source/Quality Filter:
The much hated/loved ability to limit the amount of opinion pieces on the home page is still here, but in an improved version. I will be the first to admit that the last filter did a very poor job and there were a lot of articles getting filtered which should not have been. I understand that this have been frustrating for many contributors and site owners. I think that one of the things that make N4G an interesting place is a lot of the content provided by the samller independent game sites. But when nine of the top ten articles were opinion pieces we were forced to do something on behalf of our readers who felt N4G should be more news focused. I think N4G can have a balance between news and opinion, but that balance must be healthy and the improved source filter will hopefully do a better job than the last. The filter has been reset so it could take weeks before it will start working properly. There is now also a strict setting for those who wants purely news focused sites.

TrustRank:
Member with a high trust rank will have more influence than members with a low trust rank. Only members who prove over time that their actions can be trusted will be able to reach a high trust rank. Members will not be able to see their own trust rank.

Newsboiler:
This is by far the biggest “new feature”, and the main reason for this site update taking so long. Newsboiler was born out of completely selfish reasons. I really wanted a site like N4G but with movie news. I discussed it with Haavard and he agreed but he also wanted a tech news site, and some good friends of us wanted a football news site and so the idea of a network of topic focused news communities based on the N4G concept was born. The Newsboiler network launches with five sites, N4G, FilmWatch, TechSpy, AnimeShibnun and 11x2. Several more Newsboiler sites that will go live later this year, and the network will probably grow to around 10 - 15 sites.

Each site will have its own community and staff who are passionate about the sites topic. We want Newsboiler to consist of focused communities that is brought to life by people who really care for and know a lot about the topic of the site they are active on. Some of you will probably want to be active in more than one Newsboiler community, so we have tried to make that experience as seamless as possible and membership for a site can be easily activated if you already have an N4G account. These new sites don’t have much content at the moment, and it will probably take a few months to build up active communities.
There are also a lot of minor changes and improvements that I did not mention in this list.

Down time took a little longer than expected, as we ran into some performance issues after importing the data from N4G. Also converting the old N4G data into data compatible with the new system took much longer than expected which resulted in less time for us to set everything up for launch. So here is a list known problems that will be fixed in the coming days/weeks.

- Old PMs are not available at the moment, but will be imported soon.

- User review and blog home pages have limited functionality at the moment.

Browser issues:
Some older browsers do not work properly with the site and it looks horrible using the PS3 browser. We are working on fixing this.

- Some site text and graphics around the site are not final, updates will be made later.

- We will probably run into performance issues in the first few days, as we need to tune the sites with live traffic to get it working properly.

- Bugs and minor errors are expected. We will fix them as we find them.

- All voting systems and the new temperature algorithm will need to be adjusted according to the data we collect in the coming days. So you can expect the site to behave a bit strange before we have this adjusted correctly.

- Mobile friendly version is in the works.

- Forum integration is temporarily limited.

- User name change not activated yet, this will be available soon. (Once per account)

There will probably be some bugs in the beginning so we must ask for a little more patient so that we can get everything working. What you see today is also just the core functionality and we plan to add custom made modules and functionality for each site based on your feedback.

Lastly I want to thank all of you who have continued to support N4G despite the many problems the sites have been facing. We have done our best to make this new site a good home for gamers to read and discuss the latest gaming news and we look forward to seeing all of you active on the new site and maybe also on the Newsboiler network. Some of you might not be able to access all sites right away due to the DNS is still pointing to the old server in some areas).

Dusty,

Please use this contact form to report bugs or any other problems you may have with the new site.

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crazyclown  +   1445d ago
AMAZING...
I and many others will agree that this project (redesign, coding, etc.) was worth the wait!

It is just simply amazing!

Good Job!!!
Koneesha  +   1445d ago
Yea this new site is amazing. I like what's been done, and the feel of the site. Hopefully you could also make a MLB newsboiler site as well some day. :)
Bubble Buddy  +   1444d ago
The voting system on the rumors is a small but nice addition. :P
RememberThe357  +   1444d ago
I have to agree
Form what I've experienced so far this is a vast improvement over the old site. I was starting to have speed issues with the old site but this one is blazing fast. Well done guys.
singhjeet29  +   1445d ago
Well Done!
This redesign is beautiful, fast and doesn't compromise someone who comes to the site often and knows where things are and should be.

Great Job, Engineers, Artists, Web Designers and Coders, Beautiful.
LebaNoob  +   1445d ago
Great job!
New site looks (very) sexy, new features are exactly what N4G needed and I'm already falling in love with the idea of NewsBoiler :D
Definitely worth the wait (Y)
T3mpr1x  +   1445d ago
Ooh
Very nice, for one thing I really like that I can login without the page having to reload. Congratulations N4G team!
xino  +   1445d ago
nice!
Damn...a lot of investment there!
Hope this site works out great, I love N4G can't do without it!
But fanboys and trolls just ruin the comment sections and abuse the system, let's hope this new feature will rule them out!

This Newsboiler system, hmmm finally it will make N4G famous as well as other small gaming sites. IGN, Gametrailers, Gamespot will start to lose face and community soon.
mookins  +   1445d ago
Nice job. Finally, an N4G that's truly enforcing rules now.
Harry190  +   1445d ago
Very interesting
And bravo. 11x2 gents, I see we are talking about real football. Very very good indeed.
Will-UK  +   1445d ago
Great Job
Good job N4G team
Ghostface22  +   1445d ago
Nice
Very nice but you need a fix for ps3
JustinSaneV2  +   1445d ago
You guys did an awesome job!
ShadesMoolah  +   1445d ago
Crank
Nice and easier but my Crank no longer has any effect as when I approve stories it's only 1 point rather than 3? I hope this will be fixed as I was happily and successfully building this up.
nix  +   1445d ago
"it looks horrible using the PS3 browser."
oh no... i am sad! but congrates!
gamelova  +   1445d ago
really beautiful, glad N4G is back. i want my news fix, other sites suck
Evildoomnerd  +   1445d ago
*Sniffs*
I love that fresh website smell in the morning! Works great!
freeluv  +   1445d ago
Mobile friendly...
Will definitely be something i'm looking forward to. Currently i only view the site on my iPhone through rss feeds because they're easier/faster than the normal site. Sounds great
chrizzl0r  +   1445d ago
Awesome. You did a great job here. It looks really fine.

How about the "My Games"-channel? Will there be any possibility to track games? I haven't found it yet.
Assassin Nawabi  +   1445d ago
Amazing job guys! well done ;)
DeforMAKulizer  +   1445d ago
I love it! =D Glad to be back!! Yay!!
kwyjibo  +   1445d ago
Cleaner design, fewer ads - Much appreciated
Culling the cancer that was open zone was a good thing too.

I'm still not sold on the bubbles commentary system, what the previous iteration of the site did, was that as soon as any discrepancy between fanboy divisions arose, that discrepancy would be continually magnified.

But in general, the cleaner lines and the increased space for the articles is much appreciated.
tom2k7  +   1445d ago
Great
The redesign looks fantastic. Great job.
Sarick  +   1445d ago
A lot of new comment sections are broken
This one seems working but the others look like plain text with pictures.
slave2Dcontroller  +   1445d ago
Awsome
after the wrinkles are all ironed out this site is going to be ace. I'm really loving the new look. The upcoming features seem cool as well. GREAT JOB Dusty, you did us proud :)
#22 (Edited 1445d ago ) | Agree(0) | Disagree(0) | Report | Reply
SmokedOut  +   1445d ago
Nice
I must say I was wondering if it was gonna happen. Looks great and worth the wait from the looks so far guys.
fluffypillow  +   1445d ago
very nice fresh and modern look thanks
scoobysnacks  +   1445d ago | Well said
Yeah, I like the new look. Its good to see the bubble system has been reset so everyone starts on an even footing again. That’s coming from someone who had 8 bubbles only last week to 3 now. Hopefully with everyone starting on 3 bubbles, the fanboys/trolls of the old N4G will be filtered out quicker to make this site a more enjoyable experience to those genuinely interested in games and not some fanboy war between consoles.

A cleaner look. A nice navigation system, it seems a lot quicker too. And hopefully with the new bubble system, and new “Trust Rank” (it will be interesting to see over time how effective this is) an N4G that is taking a more strict stance on those individuals that abused the old system with multiple accounts and constant trolling.

It looks to be a better version of N4G.
n4f  +   1445d ago
it look nice
i like the new look and yeah it way much faster now but one thing im sad of is the openzone:( it was kinda funny the comment there
kerrak  +   1445d ago
Congrats!
The site is shaping nicely, both visually and in terms of content/filtering.
You have to work on ps3 version asap. It is my main browser for n4g and hopefully soon for more newsboiler sites.
The Hunter  +   1445d ago
Well done guys..
I Liked the beta, and now I like it more because its launched! Great Job! And I like also the new football site ^^
V8SuperCars  +   1445d ago
Sub Lime
Well done on the hard work, N4G is my go to website and now is even better, congrads on pulling off such a neat update and making the site even better to use, long live N4G.
AEtherbane  +   1445d ago
Awesome Job!
"Mobile friendly version is in the works."
I love you guys... just one question, will we get our bubbles back?
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