Blog / General / Long way to FlatPress 1.3: Current status
Hey folks, quite some time has passed since the release of our last FlatPress version 1.2.1. And often the obvious question has been asked: “When will FlatPress 1.3 finally be released?”
Today, I’d like to give you an overview over the current status of development.
tl;dr: FlatPress 1.3 is almost ready, but a few annoying problems are still holding us back from releasing it. We ask for your help.
What we want to achieve with FlatPress 1.3
- Main goal (and it’s about damn time!) is PHP 8.1 and 8.2 compatibility.
- Also, we want to add a few more plugins for convenience. For example, FlatPress lacked a proper image gallery display and management.
- And of course, known bugs and security issues should be fixed.
What is done already
Even if you haven’t necessarily noticed it, a lot has happened since the last FlatPress release. As of today, we count 424 GitHub commits to be precise :)
Reading through the change log, you’ll find a lot of changes, fixes and additions. I want to highlight the most important ones:
- We got FlatPress working with PHP 8.1 and 8.2.
But there was a “little” catch: In previous versions, FlatPress utilized version 2 of the templating engine Smarty, which is outdated and does not support current PHP versions. So we switched to the current Smarty version 4, that came with significant API changes - we had to rework a lot of code and template files. Although that worked out great in general, we still have a few critical issues to fix (see below).
- Some new plugins have found their way into the FlatPress standard, for example PhotoSwipe for stylish and responsive image gallery display, or the Gallery Captions plugin for maintaining the captions of gallery images in the Admin Area.
- A proper metric ton of bugs and security issues has been fixed.
- The FlatPress installer is now localized and looks better than ever.
If you’re curious, feel free to get the latest development version, it’s currently named “FlatPress 1.3.dev”. The “dev” is not silent - it stands for “do not update your productive blog, some things might not work properly yet!”. But there’s absolutely nothing to be said against installing it in another folder of your web server to take a peek at the cool new features of FlatPress 1.3! After all, removing it afterwards is as simple as deleting this folder.
What still has to be tackled
There a still a few open issues, we gather them in a milestone on GitHub. Some of them are real blockers for the release of FlatPress 1.3 - we can’t ship as long as the contact form is not working, or saving entries is not possible under some circumstances. Also, the RSS feed delivers raw BBCode, which simply has to be fixed. Most of these issues relate to the Smarty update.
Greatest limiting factor is, no surprise, the developers’ spare time. Especially the Smarty issues are quite challenging and require more than one or two single hours of debugging.
So if you like to support us there, we’d appreciate any help!
What you can do to help us
- We invite FlatPress users to download the lastest development version. Fiddle around with it, and let us know your findings on the support forum.
- Template and plugin authors may want to prepare their templates and plugins for Smarty 4 in order to run with FlatPress 1.3. This helpful article on our wiki also contains tips on how to keep plugins backwards compatible.
- As a PHP programmer, please feel free to tackle any of the open issues from the 1.3 milestone! We’re always very grateful for Pull Requests with your changes on GitHub.
So this is the current FlatPress 1.3 development status. Of course, we’ll keep you up to date whenever there’s something new. Make sure to follow the FlatPress accounts on Mastodon or Twitter, and subscribe to this blog’s RSS feed.
Keep blogging happily!
All the best,
Blog / General / Project interna / Feel free to say “Thank you”
over the last few years, some of you have asked me how they could send me a small donation to recognize my efforts on the FlatPress project.
This means a lot to me, not for the money, but for your gratitude.
I’ve finally managed to set up a PayPal account and a SEPA bank account for this - so if you want to send a little “Thank you”, feel free to do so now:
Thanks a lot to all of you!
Blog / General / Please help testing: New Admin Area
hope you had a good start into 2022. These are strange and sometimes exhausting times out there, stay safe and keep smiling!
As you may or may not know, franah works on a complety new Admin Area for quite a while now. It presents all the known administrative functions in a stylish new way and also works great on your mobile gizmo, e.g. smartphone or tablet.
What we need to do now is testing the new Admin Area in every possible way. Is everything working fine, does it look good on any device, does it break anything?
This is where YOU come into play: Please help us testing!
Download the latest development snapshot here:
(The “responsiveadmin” development branch contains everything you find in the main branch - but with the new Admin Area instead of the old one.)
You could set up a new FlatPress installation, say, under yourwebsite.com/responsiveadmin. Then simply copy the fp-content and fp-plugins folders from your productive website there, so you can edit your very own blog content in the new Admin Area. Also, add the folder of your productive theme to fp-interface/themes to see if your own blog theme works well with the new Admin Area.
Since we are in very early testing, we strongly recommend not to use the new Admin Area on productive sites. Let’s make sure everything works and looks fine first :)
If you have opinions about the new Admin Area, or you want to suggest changes or report bugs, please join the discussion on the FlatPress support forum:
Thank you very much for supporting us!
All the best,
Blog / General / News / FlatPress is now on Mastodon 🐘
You know our Twitter account @FlatPress, right? Well, you might say, “but FlatPress says in its FAQ it wants to make its users independent from such platforms!”. And you’re right!
From now on, you also find the FlatPress project on Mastodon. This is a social network service which works quite similar to Twitter. The main difference is the absence of one single central instance that controls everything. Instead, Mastodon has many independent instances which work together. The FlatPress account resides on the Fosstodon instance.
So if you already have a Mastodon account, feel free to follow @email@example.com. And if not, why not give it a try?
All the best
Original image from the Mastodon press kit.
Blog / General / A few words before the year ends
Hi folks, I hope you’re all okay out there. The year 2020 has been a hell of a ride for many of us, hopefully you all got through it without major damage.
For the FlatPress project, 2020 was kind of quiet. Sure, we made big steps towards FlatPress 1.2 (see the progress in the Changelog), but we didn’t manage to release it yet. Even the security fix I planned to release didn’t work out as expected, it may even not be released until after 1.2.
However, 2020 also was another year with strong community support. Thanks a lot for all the emails and suggestions, for your contributions on the wiki, your testing efforts and your pull requests on GitHub. Also, thank you very much for kindly supporting each other on the forums, it is always a real pleasure for me to see that.
I feel a little sorry about the slow release cycle. FlatPress 1.2 should’ve been released long ago to enable FlatPress for PHP 7.4 and PHP 8. I’ll do my best to get this done real soon. But at least, we consequently stick to our project philosophy: We do not run a feature race here ;)
I wish you all some quiet and peaceful holidays. Let’s take a few days off and gather fresh momentum for the new year. If all goes well, life may go back to some kind of normal one day.
All the best,
Image: Derivate of “meh” by Яick Harris - licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0