About: With Dev Insights we want to share our internal development and explain processes.
UGX ReactionsToday we look at the making of the UGX Reactions features which is available with the UGX-Mods Forum update v0.8.6-beta.
(released on May 12, 2019 - https://confluence.ugx-mods.com/display/UGXMODS/UGXSMF+v0.8.6-beta)
The reaction feature follows a long existing trend, to react to messages.
You see this daily in Discord, Facebook, Twitter, etc. in various ways.
What we expect: More feedback to users, beacause sometimes you don't want to write something but simply give a thumbs up for example.
How it all startedIt all begins with an idea, which will be recoreded in our Agile Tracking Software JIRA.
On 27th June 2018 the following ticket was created: https://jira.ugx-mods.com/browse/UGXSMF-290
Then a few days / weeks / months went by until the ticket is priotized for the next release.
In Progress!On 10th March 2019 it was finally set in progess, which means the actual planning and development of this feature happens.+
In this case it means thinking about the User Interface, how the backend (functionallity, database scheme) will look like and so on.
A prototype / dummy will be written to rapidly see how it will look at the end.
Once everything works out as expected, the feature will be shown to a disclosed group for feedback.
Additioanlly the "real" development begins and the functionallity will be implemented + design polishing.
It could be that easy!Most of the functionallity is hidden to end users.
In theory it's simply adding a reaction to a message, store it in the database and display it to all users.
The end? No!
There is a lot more involved in this process to offer a user friendly feature.
Handling Security, permissions, performance, caching and abusive behavior is taking most of the development time.
Our moderators need tools to remove quickly reactions and need a place to review reactions. Oh and it also has to work nicely and needs to be as easy and fast as possible.
Writing secure and flawless logic, which also performs well and can scale up (handle a alot of users) is by no means an easy task.
Additionally we are limited in our resources and tied to an old forum system. It surely is sometimes a challange, eventually fails and we need to find a good compromise.
ReleasedWith v0.8.6-beta we roll out the first iteration of our UGX Reactions feature.
Users can add up to 20 reactions (max 10 per one user) to any forum message as long as the topic or message is approved, not locked or frozen.
There is no realtime update of the reactions available yet (very low priority) - but maybe in the future we can implement this.
The compromise at the moment is to reload reactions in certain intervals - so it will get updated over time if you stay on a page.
Whats next?We keep an eye on our feedback and reporting channels and see if everything is fine.
Most likely we will push updates / fixes in case we missed something.
You can read the full changelog here: https://confluence.ugx-mods.com/display/UGXMODS/UGXSMF+v0.8.6-beta
Bugfix changelog: https://confluence.ugx-mods.com/display/UGXMODS/UGXSMF+v0.8.6b-beta
This was the last major feature for the UGX-Mods forum for now.
We will put more time and effert into UGX Play and the UGX Launcher and are looking forward to share some news about it soon.