We've been busywyg

It's been a busy few weeks aboard the Mothership, and we have come out of it with a handleful of features and improvements that we are really excited about!

The Preview Editor

First up is the new preview editor, also known as a WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get). In previous iterations of Mothership, the primary way of editing content was to use markdown, and while that is fine for more tech-savvy content editors, it's not exactly something we would expect humans to feel comfortable with. Weighing up the choices of WYSIWYG libraries to use, we decided that we liked the one used by the Medium blogging platform the most. It's simple, elegant, and unobtrusive. Simply select some text and small menu of basic formatting options will pop-up. If you prefer the control of editing in markdown, you still can! Simply click the 'Markdown editor' tab, and you will see the text in its raw form.

To implement this feature, we used David Ferreira's great Medium JavaScript library, with Ionică Bizău's Markdown plugin.

Page Filtering

Another new feature is the ability to allow users to filter content via an automatically generated form. Development with this tool is a little complex, and so we will be integrating it into the base installation in the near future.

This integration will allow users to filter blog posts by tags, and the process will look like this:

  • A user clicks through to the blog listing, where there will be a form with a checkbox for each tag assigned to a blog post.
  • When the user selects a tag, the posts in the listing will filter out any pages that do not have that tag.
  • The URL in the address bar will change to accomodate for the selected tags, meaning that clicking the 'Back' button will return you to the filtered listing.

In the near future, we will be implementing this functionality into our E-commerce module to allow users to filter products by colours and sizes.

 Optimisation

Perhaps one of the less obvious improvements initially, we are always working to improve Mothership's performance. This includes fixing bugs, and finding ways to optimise the way things load. For instance, there is no point in loading and building the same product from the database twice, so now they are stored in memory until they are updated in case the system needs them again. We have also rewritten the page loader to use newer Cog features like the query builder.

The Future

We're really excited about these features, as they bring us closer to our goal of making Mothership a the best experience for developers and users alike. However, we're more excited about what we have in store for the future.

Things you can expect to see in the future:

  • Our much-touted EPoS module (be sure to check out the video if you missed it!)
  • Releasing the accounting module, for integrating with accounting platforms such as Xero
  • Major improvements to the admin panel to give a simpler and more consistent experience

So personally I can't think of a better time to get involved!

Comments

Comment on this blog post