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IPS Round Up: AI, Pages, and the New Smiley


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The most interesting, most fascinating, most informative, and sometimes the most bizarre topics from the IPS client community.  

In this case, it's all in one post by Matt, who managed to drop some pretty big points in an everyday post:

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https://invisioncommunity.com/forums/topic/477045-when-can-we-expect-ic-5-to-be-released/?do=findComment&comment=2967229

There's the potential for AI tools in the new editor!  There's an overhaul of Pages and building pages with blocks! There's the timeline for 5.0 release!  

These are all huge and weighty things by themselves.  While generally a news cycle dies down as we get closer to a release because, well, anything important to be talked about has been talked about, the rumor mill has ratcheted up to a whole new level that some of the biggest swings for 5.0 are yet to be announced. 

Pages is the most advanced out of the family of IPS applications with the most utility and power for clients (it's a database, template, block, and page builder all-in-one).  The Pages app is the foundational application to build an entire website around your forum. I personally believe this aligns with the future of online community technology for independent communities, which need a half-decent website builder as much as a forum. Integrating with Wordpress is messy.  

One thing that struck me is that Matt emphasized that the Pages update brings a lot more flexibility and power to the Page builder / Block manager.  This is great for crafting unique and static pages.  But he didn't mention Databases.  We'll need to see if IPS offers easier customization or templating of Databases, which are incredibly powerful but have a very high learning curve.  

No less important is the surprise news about the new Editor, which seems to be a last minute change by IPS.  It sounds like the change in editor wasn't planned at all, but since they're making the change, they've decided to postpone the 5.x release and incorporate the new editor.  The editor is the single most important interface between the community software and users, and I'm personally most interested in getting teasers and more information about the new editor. By switching to a modern and well-supported editor, IPS has an opportunity in the market right now to convert over clients from other forum software, who are stuck on legacy editors with known issues.    

In any case, we should expect to see some more concrete details come out in April with the first hosted demo.  

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On 3/31/2024 at 4:03 AM, JoelR said:

By switching to a modern and well-supported editor, IPS has an opportunity in the market right now to convert over clients from other forum software, who are stuck on legacy editors with known issues.    

The biggest competitor in forum software already has something better than CKEditor. If THIS would not be, we would be stuck on the legacy one ...

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We switched as we're getting increasingly concerned by CKEditor 5s view on their open source licensing and their very high annual commercial use license prices.

    

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33 minutes ago, V0RT3X said:

The link is for IPS clients only.

Understood.

I have three licenses, so $600 to renew.

I can't remember the last time there was a valuable update.

My sites are not self-supporting, and I'm retired.

I let my licenses lapse.

I was just wondering if someone could post what IPS is claiming is worth my while to pay for an update.  Oddly they block me from seeing posts that might entice me to renew my licenses.

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1 hour ago, Square Wheels said:

I have three licenses, so $600 to renew.

You should check out the Classic package for self hosted, it are about 20 bucks per month/license.

All official announcements can be found in their blog and I think guests can see it too. There's nothing special in that thread, not even which editor it will be. For definite information I would wait for an official news ...

https://invisioncommunity.com/news/

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1 hour ago, V0RT3X said:

You should check out the Classic package for self hosted, it are about 20 bucks per month/license.

Thanks, there is only one self-hosted package now.  It's $199 a year.

My licenses expired about 1 month ago.  I'm holding out for a "real" update, or until something breaks and I need support.

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Just now, V0RT3X said:

Have they removed the monthly payment? I'm still on USD 19 for the Classic subscription. 

Oops, you're correct.  I opted in for the annual payment; it saves money, and (for now) I can postpone renewing for up to a year.

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Updated the OP with a screenshot of the post.  

It wasn't a formal announcement or anything, just a reply back but IPS alluded to quite a few things!  

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3 hours ago, Square Wheels said:

I was just wondering if someone could post what IPS is claiming is worth my while to pay for an update.  Oddly they block me from seeing posts that might entice me to renew my licenses.

You're still okay.  Nothing official is announced yet, just a hint of what's to come.  I personally like reading the casual postings by the company, because you can periodically pick up on the thinking and ideology behind some of their development.  When IPS posts company news, they tend to focus it on the features: "here's this shiny new thing, yay!" And while features are cool and get all of the applause, just as important are the features' application to real world examples, the context, the ideology, and how IPS intends the feature to be used. 

For example, on their latest blog (Assign topics to moderators), they talk about things like specialization of duties, accountability, speed to response, quality control.  

IPS is still posting their official announcements in their News, which is viewable by all.  

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It is strange to me that they do not have a schedule for the delivery of their product. AI tools in the editor! How many weeks does it really take to implement this tool in an editor?! Wouldn't it be better if they optimized the same editor and released version 5 and replaced their powerful editor(!!!!) in the new update?!

This platform has so much potential for improvement that it can be raised from this normal level to a high level, but I don't think they have a plan to do so.

Closing the marketplace was their big mistake, through which they could develop the app more quickly, which many platforms do. For example, they should have added third-party apps/plugins to their core according to the needs of the community, of course, with an agreement with their author.

I think they will abondon the self-hosting and this part of the community should think about it.
I am sure that some developers in this community can develop this platform much better and faster. Third-party apps that even make the IPS core stronger, but as far as I realized, the members of this community do not support this plan and are still waiting for their update. The updates that never surprised me during these years.

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11 hours ago, ReyDev said:

Wouldn't it be better if they optimized the same editor and released version 5 and replaced their powerful editor(!!!!) in the new update?!

It sounds as if the old editor has to go asap because it's getting too expensive.

11 hours ago, ReyDev said:

For example, they should have added third-party apps/plugins to their core according to the needs of the community, of course, with an agreement with their author.

vBulletin used to do that from time to time and afaik they even paid out the developers of the addons. IPS is doing it too, for example Pages databases in Clubs was an application by Sonya* but I don't think she was asked or even got any money. Please correct me if I'm wrong with this.

11 hours ago, ReyDev said:

I think they will abondon the self-hosting and this part of the community should think about it.

I'm prepared, none of my important projects uses IPS anymore. From former 7 licenses only one is still active.

11 hours ago, ReyDev said:

I am sure that some developers in this community can develop this platform much better and faster. Third-party apps that even make the IPS core stronger

True. And that is why in my opinion closing the Marketplace was a good thing, we have more freedom and no more limitations.

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1 hour ago, V0RT3X said:

vBulletin used to do that from time to time and afaik they even paid out the developers of the addons. IPS is doing it too, for example Pages databases in Clubs was an application by Sonya* but I don't think she was asked or even got any money. Please correct me if I'm wrong with this.

I also had an app that I saw later in their updates. I don't say they took my idea, at least they didn't care about the market items.

after any update, there are some problems, bugs, and even new bugs in old cases. don't they have the Unit Test?

If the members support, I am ready to cooperate in developing all apps of this platform. I mean developing everything, even its core, without changing its source code(3rd-party applications) besides new major apps like multi-vendor eCommerce, Jobs, booking system, etc. It means you can also update the IPS without any problems if you like!

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I'm happy to share a little more insight into why we switched from CKEditor with v5.

CKEditor 4 reached end of life in June 2023. The licensing has always been very permissive allowing developers to choose between GNU 2, GNU Lesser, or Mozilla. These essentially allowed you to combine their product within a commercial product as long as you honoured the license. For example, the Mozilla license requires you to keep all copyright notices in place, etc which we do.

CKEditor 4 still has "limited time support" but we cannot use this version as this version, v4.23 and above, are now a propriety license which is no longer open source, so we're stuck with their last open source release with no upgrade path outside of a commercial license.

When we set out our roadmap for Invision Community 5, it made sense to use CKEditor v5 which we did. To be clear, it's a completely different product to CKE v4 and it was a fair struggle to rewrite all our plugins as they have a much more complex document model. But we did it.

However, over the last year we've become increasingly concerned with CKEditor's stance with open source, and indeed it's been clear for years that they really only want open source products to use CKEditor via the GPL license, and not commercial. While the GPL 2 license is a bit vague about bundling with a commercial product, we felt that the communication coming from CKEditor made their stance quite clear their direction.

Furthermore, CKEditor 5 (v.38) was released in late May 2023 just after we had done most of the work and this version required a "Powered by" graphic on all CKEditor usages in the bottom corner when using the GPL license.

CleanShot2024-04-04at12_56.43@2x.thumb.png.9f3266162e96fc7b366b2463760dc25f.png

To be clear, I don't have any issue with any of this. CKEditor is a great product and they've given it away for years for little financial compensation, so having a commercial option makes sense, and it's something we pursued with them.

To give some context, Froala's commercial license is about $2,000/year and Redactor was $1200/year.

CKEditor wanted $36,000 a year for a commercial license. We felt that was just too much to justify and made the decision to switch out the editor now, rather than do it in v5.1. 

We did a lot of research and found a modern and fast React based editor which we've built our editor around. We have a commercial license with them that offers us Slack based support direct with their dev team. The editor is also 400% faster than CKEditor 5. As mentioned previously, they have a lot of AI tools and the scope for creating a really custom editing experience for Pages is there in the near future.

Given that we've had to build our own toolbars, etc, it's taken more time than a simple drop in replacement but we're on phase 3 of that part of the project and it's coming along great.

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On 4/2/2024 at 6:10 PM, ReyDev said:

It is strange to me that they do not have a schedule for the delivery of their product

We do. We just haven't published it publicly.

timeline.jpg.73a1480ad0b5a1ca2a5b63b501104ec1.jpg

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23 hours ago, Matt said:

We do. We just haven't published it publicly.

timeline.jpg.73a1480ad0b5a1ca2a5b63b501104ec1.jpg

Hi @Matt

I took your post at IPS to mean that launch was slated to occur early this year. And I put off some needed code fixes to an app since the launch of v5 seemed imminent. Can you at least provide a rough estimate of the actual launch date?

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On 4/4/2024 at 4:32 PM, ReyDev said:

@Matt Great, 

So please give the exact time. When will version 5 be released?

This is only from my perspective as another IPS client. IPS is sometimes okay at giving rough estimates of immediate upcoming dates (eg. private beta in April).  In ten years, I've never seen IPS give an exact date and time for a release. It would be nice, but they've never committed to publishing hard dates for clients.  

When you ask for a date, what date are you asking about? The release of a new cycle has many dates: private beta, beta, initial release, and stable.  Just because IPS releases 5.0.0 doesn't mean you want to start developing on 5.0.0.  

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8 hours ago, JoelR said:

When you ask for a date, what date are you asking about? The release of a new cycle has many dates: private beta, beta, initial release, and stable.  Just because IPS releases 5.0.0 doesn't mean you want to start developing on 5.0.0.  

I just want to know when somthing about v5 will be released.it doen't matter which version . Has the coding structure changed a lot or not? What things have been added and subtracted?

I don't care if version 5 is released tomorrow or early 2025. to me, the important thing is whether I can continue my work on this platform or not. Just let me(us) know roughly what changes there are in the source code and structures. what things are supposed to be changed.

The issue is that after the closing of the marketplace, I didn't want to continue on this platform, but when I thought about my 4-year activity here, I gave myself another chance, and now with these delays, I have to give myself another chance every week 😅

I wanted to work on some apps, of course I started and released LMS, but I thought that maybe the structure of coding and development in version 5 will be fundamentally changed so i've stoped all works.

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