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Full-screen functionality for XenForo's texteditor

Grover

Well-known member
#1
Hello,

I tend to write extensive postings and obviously when you are an admin you will find yourself doing this even more in your private Staff Forums (think of manuals, FAQ's and what else). As a passionate vB 3.8 owner there was always one of these things in that product that frustrated me (more then mildly ;)) and that was the fact that it did not offer us extensive posters/writers/bloggers/teachers a Full Screen option inside the build-in text editor :(.

Unfortunately, neither does XenForo. As I plan to use XenForo for 2 of my projects which both will have a member base of extensive posters (including myself), I truly hope that the developers can consider this to be included in a future release.

When you write extensive posts this is what happens in XenForo:

missing a full screen editor.png

... making it a rather frustrating experience to construct large postings. When you have reached a certain length (like in the above screenshot) and you want to change the markup/layout of the text, you select the text you want to change, but then you have to use the browser's scroll bar (or your mouse wheel) to browse the entire browser-screen in the upwards direction to reach XenForo's Wysiwyg toolbar. Subsequently loosing the focus on the text you were working on. In my book, the latter is always a bad thing. It keeps being an annoying hassle of having to scroll up and down all the time, frustrating my workprocess and that of my teammembers and a large amount of my current and future members.

I am spending a heck of a lot of time inside XenForo's editor compared to my time inside Microsoft's Word or any other professional word processor. However, it is a pure joy to use MS Word or any other dedicated editor for that matter, because it gives me a toolbar that is always visible and accesible locked at the top of my screen! How else are we able to construct and edit our documents in an efficient and user friendly manner?

I would like to propose such a Full-screen option for XenForo's wysiwyg editor, where the toolbar is fixed to the top. It will make my online life so much more pleasurable.

More benefits to be found here: http://xenforo.com/community/thread...ity-for-xenforos-texteditor.9948/#post-136684

Please do [like] this first posting if you think it is a good feature suggestion for XenForo
 

Grover

Well-known member
#2
Look at this fantastic example:

http://ckeditor.com/demo

Find the full-screen button in the toolbar and see its magic :cool:.

-
The same goes for WordPress. On the normal sized editor you click on the Full Screen Toggle in the upper toolbar...



... and there you have it:



... the wysiwyg toolbar stays fixed at the top of the screen, just like in Word and ditto applications. Clicking on it again, conveniently brings you back to the normal sized editor in just 1 single mouse-click. No more scrolling on multiple scrollbars, no more loosing focus on what you are actually working on, a much better overview of your posting/content, ... bottom line: no more hassle and a much easier/efficient work environment for heavy/extensive posters/authors/admins, etc!

Source
 

Jaxel

Well-known member
#3
That drag option on the bottom right is built into Chrome... you can do it in every simple text box. Unfortunately, you can't do it in XenForo's text box unless you turn off the Rich Text Editor and revert to the BB Code Editor.
 

Grover

Well-known member
#4
That drag option on the bottom right is built into Chrome... you can do it in every simple text box. Unfortunately, you can't do it in XenForo's text box unless you turn off the Rich Text Editor and revert to the BB Code Editor.
In fact, it's even worse... because reverting to the BB Code Editor and using this drag/resize function... only gives us 4 more textlines to work with in XenForo. It just doesn't stretch any further.
 

xenDach

Active member
#7
I just tested what you pointed out Grover and XenForo stops extending the editor's vertical size just before the title of the thread reaches the top of the page. It then goes to a scrollbar function for continued text input so the toolbar always stays visible at the top of the page. What you've displayed doesn't happen.

If the text editor is wider, which you can change yourself, then that should be fine for more extensive posts.

xenDach
 

Grover

Well-known member
#8
I just tested what you pointed out Grover and XenForo stops extending the editor's vertical size just before the title of the thread reaches the top of the page. It then goes to a scrollbar function for continued text input so the toolbar always stays visible at the top of the page. What you've displayed doesn't happen.
Thanks for correcting me, xenDach! Reading your posting I tested it again and it turns you you are certainly right. This is a bit confusing for me, because when I tested it earlier, I obviously was indeed confronted with the problem I describe in the first posting. Otherwise I wouldn't have posted it. But when I test it again now on my PC with a 1680x1050 res. on Chrome, everything works like you pointed out.

I stand corrected and sorry for the confusion. Still... I am confused myself because I can not reproduced what I experienced before.

All in all the need of a Full Screen editor becomes (just a little) bit less for me now (since I can not reproduce my issue and XenForo seems to work greatly on lengthy postings), but having said that I still believe it would come in handy nevertheless. Because if we would have a button we could press that brings us instantly in and out of Full Screen Mode, then this...

If the text editor is wider, which you can change yourself, then that should be fine for more extensive posts.
xenDach
... is not necessary anymore. No need to change any width, no need to change any default XF install, because a Full Screen Mode gives us the widest screen possible anyway. That's one of the reasons why I love this example so much: http://ckeditor.com/demo

What I love about it is:
  • The fact that we are not confronted with any vertical browser scrollbar at all.
    In XenForo we have 2 scrollbars in our working screen when we edit large postings. Making your mouse-scroll wheel sometimes -unwantedly (is this a word?!) - control your browser scrollbar instead of your inner wysiwyg-scrollbar (I guess this happened to me when I posted my first posting). I always experience this (2 scrolling bars on 1 single screen) as a bit awkward (especially for non-computer litterate people) in any web-application. A full screen option like in the CKEditor solves this beautifully,
  • Instant maximum width
    No need to change any settings, just 1 single click and boom! It will work the same in every single XenForo install.
  • Instant overview
    Instant Full Screen overview of your posting. Really convenient for obvious reasons such as:
  • No need for a [Preview] button anymore
    I never understood the value of a [Preview] button when you have a WYSIWYG editor at hand! Well.. with a Full Screen Editor... who needs a [Preview] anymore at all?! There is no need... the Full Screen button gives you this instant preview now.
  • I have a wide-screen monitor for a reason you know!
    When you are using the Quick Reply Editor on XenForo, you can make use of the full width of your screen. Strangely enough, when you go to the more Advanced 'More Options' Reply Editor, you can not make use of the full width of your screen anymore. The Quick editor is called quick for a reason, but surely when I want to use the Advanced Editor and I am not there for a quicky. I am there to take good care of my postings/articles... I am spending quality time there... and a full screen environment would be very welcome to support me in that!
  • Thinking of the future
    If the golden age ever comes that XenForo will be more than just a forum and the current wysiwyg-editor is being used for creating other rich content such as CMS articles, then such a Full Screen option would be a very welcome addition. CMS articles tend to be more lengthy then your average forumposting and need more care/editing. Having said that a lot of forum postings inside my own Staf Zone are extensive also and need a lot of care/editing too, but I'm drifting off. Bottom-line is: I just work so much more easier/efficiently inside a convenient robust full-screen area compared to a tiny textarea with scrollbars inside a browser window with again scrollbars....
  • ... and the list goes on :).
 

Shelley

Well-known member
#9
That's one of the reasons why I love this example so much: http://ckeditor.com/demo
I'm sure there was a bug in that editor that currently restricts xenforo from using it. And I read the license agreement. Would xenforo have to pay $1450 dollars to use this and distribute it being that xenforo is a commercial product? I could be wrong on both accounts and thinking of a totally different editor.
 

Brogan

XenForo moderator
Staff member
#10
Mike has already posted a few times that the current editor presented them with the least issues which is why they decided to use it.
 

Grover

Well-known member
#11
Mike has already posted a few times that the current editor presented them with the least issues which is why they decided to use it.
I guess this is not a reaction on my suggestion? Because when you look here: http://tinymce.moxiecode.com/tryit/full.php you will discover an interesting button called 'Toggle fullscreen mode'...

I wonder if there's any forum product out there who sees the valuable benefits of providing it's users with such functionality? It seems that all those third-party editors actually are able to do it! So why not make use of it? That would be much more beneficial (on several levels: see my points here) then letting customers change their width on their individual XenForo installs...
 

Pereira

Well-known member
#15
I would leave changing editors to an x.0 release. I have seen what happened when IPB tried to do it without any extensive testing.

Just update the current version. Add a different skin to it if necessary.