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XenForo Template System is a Style Designer Dream :)

Discussion in 'General XenForo Discussion and Feedback' started by Miko, Nov 1, 2010.

  1. Miko

    Miko Well-Known Member

    I just wanted to say that after designing and coding forum styles for over 11 years (Ultimate Bulletin Board and later vBulletin) I have developed a love and hate relationship with most scripts and they're templates system.

    When I left the vBulletin world with a sour taste in my mouth, I was convinced not to ever design a forum skin again until of course I discovered XenForo...

    I started working with XenForo template system during the Alpha testing and I was somewhat disappointed that such a beautiful modern looking forum would have a fairly basic and not organised template system.

    Sure the Style Property were great but somewhat not what i had in mind...

    After expressing my concern Kier, he immediately pointed out that soon some very interesting feature will be revealed that would allow me and everyone else to work with templates in a completely different way....

    He was so right!

    Working with WebDav while editing templates is simply incredible.
    No more limitations on what I can or can't do.
    I can use my code editor of choice, we my preferred Syntax Highlighting, I can create my own code snipped, I can even add Xen specific tags to my editor to speed up my work flow.

    screen-capture.png

    Best of all I can always compare my custom templates with the master style or even with a previous version of my own changes side by side using one of the many file comparison applications that are available on the market.

    That is what I like best, I'm free to work with XenForo the way that I would normally work with any other website project.

    I'm not restricted by the usual boring template system that is forced on my in most script.

    Upgrading a style between version as never been so easy in any software.
    I upgrade a theme with 45 custom templates in under 40 minutes and that is pretty damn good when I compare it to any other forum software that I have used before.

    screen-capture-1.png

    What else can I say... Custom Style Properties are bringing forum scripts to Today standard.
    The power given to style designers is almost unlimited.
    We can finally offer something similar to WordPress Themes Options Page to a forum, and that is simply incredible :)

    WebDav, is not going to be for everyone, but for the advanced users there is nothing on the market (in Forums scripts) that offers this kind of control over the templates!

    I hope that I haven't wasted to much of your time with this post, I simply wanted to share with you my experience with XenForo template system.

    Take care,
    Miko
     
  2. kkm323

    kkm323 Well-Known Member

    i am glade you love xf as i do too
    and i can't wait to use one of your styles
     
  3. Peggy

    Peggy Well-Known Member

    Thanks for this glowing report Miko. I'm anxiously awaiting your forum themes.
     
  4. Shelley

    Shelley Well-Known Member

    I mentioned on twitter how good the styling system is and how flexible it is about a gazillion times. I also mentioned that it's in my mind the most powerful, and best style system of any forum product. I honestly can't see any other product coming remotely close to it.

    I even made a comment about people saying they're wre hardly any scripts for xenforo and a lot of changes I made last night on a style would have needed an add-on to get that visual change in vbulletin were some lines of code (css) did the trick. I almost thought is that it? i did something wrong that was too easy and went to check the changes I made on the forum and there it was a nice visual change.

    This isn't just an easy system for the novices it's a flexible, intelligent system for those experienced. The direction the style system is going is the right one it's all nice. :)
     
    Dragonfly and Peggy like this.
  5. iTuN3r

    iTuN3r Well-Known Member

    Hope you will release the skin you made for defendxf forum someday soon :p

    @ Miko : Hope we will see some great styles for XF soon in future from you.
     
  6. Shelley

    Shelley Well-Known Member

    I never created the style for defendxenforo.org that was Dragonfly (Kim) fantastic work. :)
     
  7. iTuN3r

    iTuN3r Well-Known Member

    Ah sorry mistook for it slept only for hour in last 24hrs :( Sometimes work is crazy can't even get to sleep .
     
  8. Allan

    Allan Well-Known Member

    I use UltraEdit for edition/compare templates.

    Where downloaded Webdav ?
     
  9. Miko

    Miko Well-Known Member

  10. Allan

    Allan Well-Known Member

  11. Jethro

    Jethro Well-Known Member

    It's currently being wrapped up into a release package, not sure I'm able to plug our site yet though :) Some last minute tweaking naturally.

    Currently trying to create my first ever skin, while upgrading Invision, and have to say the standard skinning engine is a breeze to use. Rather than having to spend ages trying to find where something is hidden away in the templates or CSS and trying to guess where a coder has put things I'm finding it all pretty logical and easy to work with. Currently trying to get a two piece header working without changing the templates :)

    Miko will have to look into the external editor thing, getting things happening through dreamweaver would be a blast.
     
  12. Kim

    Kim Well-Known Member

    I am going to release it in the next day or so on my new site. :)
     
    Jethro, Peggy and Shelley like this.
  13. Kim

    Kim Well-Known Member

    Miko.....


    I couldn't agree more :D it took me a little while to get my head around the Styling System... but WOW it is really awesome when you do!

    I was seriously blown away doing a skin without any template changes.. not one, I am sure it is possible with the software I have been developing in for the last 8 years... but man would it be a whole lot harder to work out!

    WebDav I haven't dialled into yet, as I still can't get xenforo to play nicely with WAMP - but hopefully soon it will be sorted, can't wait to do it that way :D

    For the Experienced it is the best system to work with, for the novice, they have built in a beautiful ability to make your own colour change skin very simply... everyone's a winner baby :D
     
    Peggy likes this.
  14. Anthony Parsons

    Anthony Parsons Well-Known Member

    Have to agree... its one extremely well designed system with a lot of forethought gone into it.

    XF should use your post above as a direct quote on how efficient the styling system is for XF.

    Now... watch how fast the competitors begin to copy!!!
     

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