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Newsletter #6 (February 2021)
Hello from Codidact! We're here with another batch of recent news.
Since our last newsletter, the team has been focusing on bugs and smaller features, including:
Search is now inline; you can click the box and start typing instead of having to go to another page. You can also search by tag(s) now, including with the negation operator.
There's now a community switcher in the top bar, to make it easier to visit all the communities you're interested in.
Pending suggested edits are easier to find. But not as easy as we'd like them to be; we're still working on this. Have ideas? You can join the discussion.
We've updated the core code that handles posts, which allows us to add new post types more easily. We added a Wiki post type (like articles but with easier editing and without voting), and we can add more on request. Communities get to decide which post types they use.
We've added more user preferences in response to requests from the community.
Communities can now nominate posts for network-wide promotion. The goal is to make it easier for Codidact participants to notice other communities or specific questions that might interest them.
Usercards now show more information, and it's all configurable per community.
We've also started work on a larger feature. We're not going to commit to a timeframe yet, but threaded comments are coming! In addition to the direct benefits, threaded comments will also enable some other improvements we've been wanting to make for a while. For example, we can use threaded comments to make it easier for the author of a post to see all feedback that accompanied close votes or duplicate nominations.
Finally, in our last newsletter we promised a blog post about what we learned in the rollout of the abilities system. You can read our review of what happened.
Since our last newsletter we've launched two new communities. (Really three, but the third is special and we'll talk about it separately.)
Music is for music artists, composers, and fans. Bring your questions about performance technique, music theory, analysis, instrument maintenance and repair, history, terminology, and more.
Physics is for questions about all types of physics -- theoretical, experimental, computational, astrophysics, geophysics, and more. Questions at all levels are welcome.
We've launched about a dozen communities and have proposals for at least a dozen more. Our proposal process is somewhat rudimentary so far, and we'd like to do better. We asked this question about improving our process and input is still welcome. We've made one change based on the discussion so far, being more explicit about what pieces a proposal still needs (summary, scope, and people). We know we need to do more. We want to help all of our communities thrive, including helping them get off to an active start. We know the current system is frustrating and we want to do better.
One focus in the last couple months has been to improve our own infrastructure -- not just the public communities, but all the stuff behind the scenes that helps keep things running smoothly. We now have a hosted development server where we can try out things without having to take other servers down temporarily. We have an internal ticketing system for issues that aren't about the code but are about our operations. We have an internal wiki for our operational documentation, like how to restart an unresponsive server, so people don't have to dig through Discord or keep private notes.
We have all of these improvements due to the efforts of one contributor. Please join us in thanking Sau226 for helping with internal infrastructure, and for finding ways to get most of it for free as a non-profit entity.
We've also launched a community specifically for people working on or with our platform code. It's called Codidact Collab, and it's for people working on the code (including testing), people setting up their own instances, and anybody else who wants to know more about how things work under the hood.
The Codidact Team