Simple Machines Forums


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Posted by David MarseillesDavid Marseilles on 19 Aug 2008 22:43, last edited on 05 Mar 2009 08:00

This wish is open

Description

I'd like to see Simple Machines Forums (SMF) as a possible add-on to a Wikidot wiki, not as a replacement to the current wikidot forums (they're invaluable for people looking for a simple forum structure as well as one that can be integrated into per-page discussion), but as an option for people who need a more fully developed forum platform with signatures and avatars and forum specific permissions, etc.

Wikidot could try and reinvent the wheel by adding all of this functionality, but truthfully, some wikidottians prefer the simpler interface the present forums provide. But wikidot can still appeal those communities that crave the extra functionality by integrating (as an option) a great platform like SMF into new wikis.

By "integrate", I mainly mean that registration would be seamless between joining the wiki in general and being able to post on the attached SMF forums. Hopefully the SMF admin panel could also be accessible inside admin:manage as well. One of the reasons I (David Marseilles) joined wikidot was because of the combination of forums and wiki under a single membership. In the past I've been a part of forums that had a wiki, but the registration was separate, and it was an annoying hassle. I don't know if SMF is compatible or easily modded to achieve that integrated registration, but it would be an amazing feature if it was.

I recently tried to steer a growing Wii Clan Community made up of dozens of clans to host here, but the limited forum options were one reason they're looking elsewhere, despite loving a number of wikidot's other features. Wikidot's appeal could grow considerably with SMF functionality.

About Simple Machines Forums

SMF is an open-source and free platform, like wikidot. Anyone can grab the package and put it up on their own site. As a result, it's become a very popular platform for free forum hosts, however, NONE of them really compare with the hosting services that wikidot provides. To wit, none of these hosts can compete with wikidot's extra wiki functionality. The combination of Wikidot's hosting policies and extra functionality.

The Makers of SMF, like many open source projects, make their money from premium support. Free support is provided at the community forums, and seems quite adequate for most ordinary users, but those desiring something extra, as well as advanced betas, upgrades and other technical services, can purchase them. I mention this just so you know how they operate.

A great many small communities prefer the feature set and mod-ability compared to boards setups like phpbb or others, and when looking for a host, look specifically for SMF hosts. Support for this feature would make wikidot all the more attractive as a community site.

Features
The list of Simple Machines Features is FAR too long to list here. But I'm going to try anyway =)

Although I'm sure the process of integrating this forum package wouldn't be easy, that ^ list of features is an incredible wealth to bring to wikidot users.

Disclaimer

I know no one wants to get rid of the present forums. I know some users will probably react negatively to this wish out of fear of losing their present, very suitable solution. Once again I stress, this would be a great option to have in addition to regular wikidot forums, not to replace or upset anyone's current setup.

Relevant SMF Links

Simple Machines Forums Home
Simple Machines License
License Explained
Simple Machines Features

Links to forum Posts

More Links to forum Posts Requesting additional forum functionality to be posted at a later time.

Hidden forums and custom group permissions (both provided for by SMF):
http://community.wikidot.com/forum/t-12687/truly-hidden-forums
http://community.wikidot.com/forum/t-71620/private-forum-threads
http://community.wikidot.com/forum/t-34189/forum-group-permissions
http://community.wikidot.com/forum/t-34178/private-discussions-in-forums
http://community.wikidot.com/forum/t-58407/forum-permisions

Forum Backup (SMF database can be backed up in multiple ways):
http://community.wikidot.com/forum/t-73814/backup-forums
http://community.wikidot.com/wishlist:backup-with-forum-tags-and-parents

Notifications:
http://community.wikidot.com/forum/t-253/email-notifications
http://community.wikidot.com/forum/t-341/forum-email-integration
http://community.wikidot.com/forum/t-26905/can-you-watch-more-than-10-pages
http://community.wikidot.com/forum/t-1662/forum-notification

Misc.
http://community.wikidot.com/forum/t-1951/more-than-one-forum


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