At last this blog is starting to shape up in the manner in which it was originally intended thanks, by and large, to my stumbling into a Plugin that I discovered only last night. The plugin is called ‘BuddyPress’ and, to all intents and purposes, allows this blog to have a mini-facebook functionality. Members can now befriend other members and send them messages either publicly or privately, and they can now join ‘Interest Groups’ and discuss relevant topics of their own choosing in their own group forums with other members.
The new functions can be found in the menu bar immediately below the banner (picture) at the top of each page. You will see that there are 4 new pages just added:-
I will be writing a tutorial page in the ‘About’ section as soon as I have sorted out the finer points for myself but, until then, I strongly recommend that you take a look at the ‘Groups’ Page, where you can join groups that are open to everyone, request to join limited interest groups or leave groups of which you are currently a member. As of now, there are 5 groups on this blog. Namely:-
- The Mintlaw Market – an ‘Open’ group designed for everyone to join so that they can discuss anything with anyone who is also a member.
- Rock Challenge Schools – another ‘Open’ group for anyone involved in Rock Challenge. It is hoped that participating schools will use this to get to know each other a little better.
- PomPrint Staff – a ‘Private’ group for anyone who is a current employee of the company. Anything can be discussed here, (except pay rises)!
- Location Puzzlers – a ‘Private’ group for members to discuss our weekly location puzzles.
- Artists – a ‘Private’ group for anyone who has contributed to the Art Galleries.
If anyone would like me to create another group, please let me know its name, its focus, and whether it should be ‘Public’ or ‘Private’, and I will arrange for it to happen.
Each Group has its own Forum, which can be found on the ‘Forum’ page. The forums allow group members to start off topics of discussion and to post replies to each other. Only other members of the group will be able to see what has been said in these forums. Please remember, however, that some groups are ‘Public’ and can be joined by anyone!
Only the forums of Public groups can be seen on this page, along with those of groups to which you belong.
I do have the ability to create ‘Hidden’ groups and forums but, as yet, I have not thought of a use for these, so none have been implemented.
From the Members page, you can see a complete list of members and add them as friends, send messages etc.
I will be writing more about this and the ‘Activity’ page once I have done a bit more exploration. I recommend that you all do the same by adding friends, joining groups and posting questions and comments on our forums. This can only work if people join in from the outset and not wait until things ‘get going’. The system is very flexible, so take part and let me know your ideas!!