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Stardust and Warpgate
Notice . Started by Night Angel 27-5-15 .

Hi angels probably you members have found a little feature on the left menu called the warpgate. It is a "portal" which allows you to throw files into it for quick sharing. The "files" you throw into are called Stardust.

To use, drag your file into the warpgate zone. You can also click onto it to bring up the file selection box. Supported files include JPG, GIF, PNG, ZIP and RAR, and no files bigger than 2MB are allowed.

Once uploaded, the tag like this will appear under the warpgate zone:

[ # 150519091146.png ]

and you can use this in this forum. Simply copy it (include the brackets) and paste it into the shoutbox or post, and you will see it being converted to something like [ image ] . Clicking on it will bring up the lightbox for quick view, while you can also SHIFT+CLICK to open it in a new window.

For ZIP and RAR files, you need to type ^ instead of # inside the tag, so that it becomes a file link like [ file ] this.

All files after 60 days will be removed automatically, and you can visit the Stardust page [ link ] to see all your uploaded files. Inside you can also remove any file manually. Please note that you can also link other angels' files, while all files are visible to public IF you paste the links to any public posts.

Enjoy this pre-17th-birthday feature and let me know if you have any issues. Thanks!

Nohbudy 31-5-15 2015-05-31 14:41:28

Interesting UI/UX change, we actually tried something similar without the 60 day purge. The idea was to have a single place to manage your files, so you can use uploads in multiple locations "easily" and begin large uploads before starting a post. We had a drag and drop system and a "Files" toolbar for inserting files into posts and comments, which behind the JavaScript just inserted tags much like your own.

We received poor feedback from our users. I liked the idea, but separating sub content entry from primary content ended up being too confusing. Users with a lot of files, or files with only minor modifications had difficulty finding the right file through our file explorer toolbar. The toolbar had a few root level limited folders/tabs for specific themes on our site, the files could be clicked or dragged. Clicking opened an image/CAD/Video viewer, that also allowed downloading. Dragging will place the file in any text input.

Whats the purpose or reason behind this feature? Would the 60 day purge cause threads with stardust files to have broken links?

ikomi 31-5-15 2015-05-31 17:03:41

Yeah, it doesn't work well in those scenarios. Good questions.

For me, this feature is a companion to the shoutbox for temporary sharing, not for long-term file storage. There was the Imagebasket before but it was really part of awBlog and not meant to be used like this. Warpgate probably works best for quickly showing photos while chatting (that would otherwise be uploaded externally on imgur or some dropbox directory on a personal website.) For that, it's pretty useful.

While it's nice that the same tag also works in forum posts, I wouldn't use it there when there's already a file attachment feature. Maybe others want to cross-post to shoutbox and forum post (which I seldom do, no need to post in multiple areas of the forum.)

On the 60-day purge, the forum used to delete old attachments to save space and (iirc) the post will just say attachment was very old and removed. Auto-purge may be a convenience for those who can't be bothered to manually delete. I did ask Night Angel if it were possible to allow users to manually delete files if no longer needed.

Since the shoutbox is only visible to registered members, you can post something without having it indexed. While not strictly needed, I'd like to see an option to make direct links being only viewable when logged in, even if chances are low that someone would find the randomly-generated link. An option to make uploads visible to members-only by default (and toggle public visibility for current state) would be great.

Just a thought.

Nohbudy . 1-6-15
It's perfect as such a feature, i will make good use of this!

Night Angel 2-6-15 2015-06-02 04:01:48

ikomi got it right. It is a little feature (actually much demanded by the angels ) that allows you to quickly share a snapshot or a file. Like what ikomi said, it is more of a temporary storage instead of long-term cloud use.

As posts already have file attachment feature, I think angels can continue to use that instead of Stardust, as the 60-day purge may cause problems with your permanent posts.

For ikomi's suggestion on file permission limitation, I will look into that and use PHP as a file grabber instead of direct link. I will see what I can do later Thanks for the suggestion.

Therefore if you need any long-term file storage, Dropbox or Google Drive should be used instead of any services here in AW. I guess they are even more reliable, haha...

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