Hi friends & readers,
We have made a number of significant changes to the website, as you will no doubt notice at the outset, browsing and reading through the website!
We have a totally new “Look & Feel”, with a new design exclusive to Rugby-Talk, and designed by me, your friendly webmaster.
The development process is still ongoing, with a few elements not yet coded and added, the most notable of which is the COMMENT NUMBER. The “missing” comment number will be a priority to add and we ask for some patience on that score and a few other issues, as time constraints keeps me from just adding them nilly willy as I would like and as I am sure you would want.
In the meantime, I suggest you use the TIME of the comment you REPLY or QUOTE from, by simply typing the time, then clicking on the relevant REPLY or QUOTE button… then go right to the end of the text added by the REPLY or QUOTE string and type your message, before SUBMITTING the comment.
One of the more interesting new additions is the GRAVATAR or “Globally Recognized Avatar”, which is a picture or symbol of the commenter. The first question which pops up is “How the heck do I add a GRAVATAR for myself?”
Well, here is the explanation:
- Simply go to your USER PROFILE here on Rugby-Talk, where you will see a Gravatar Section was added or alternatively go to the the Gravatar website at http://www.gravatar.com
- Simply click on Create Your Own Gravatar, fill in the E-Mail Address you used here on Rugby-Talk to register (or your other E-Mail Address – in which case you would also have to add your E-Mail Address here on Rugby-Talk afterwards, for the Gravatar to appear)
- Follow the prompts on how to add a picture from your computer or some generic symbol. It will take you through the process to crop the image and to add it.
- It will also send you a Mail containing a link where you have to go verify creation of the Gravatar.
- Make sure to add Rugby-Talk’s URL (web address) as one of the web pages where your gravatar will be used. In case you do not know, which is highly unlikely, Rugby-Talk’s URL is: http://www.rugby-talk.com
- Finish off the processes and wham-bam, by magic you will then have your own Gravatar.
The Second question is whether you need to even bother changing or creating a Gravatar for yourself? Well no, you do not HAVE TO, but it is a nice addition to have your own personalised Gravatar, so we encourage you to create one.
Regarding which approach to use for an Avatar / Gravatar… the following:
- Using Gravatar makes sense, as any other Avatar Plugin we could use, which does not run through Gravatar, will impact on site perfrmance and CPU load time, due to the fact that added queries then have to run, whereas Gravatar’s use is already built into the WordPress Platform backbone, requiring a simple click in my Admin Panel to activate using Gravatars or not.
- Regarding prescriptive use – like in the Disqus or LiveFyre commenting systems… applying Gravatar it is not nearly going that route, as Gravatar use is and has been part of the WordPress Platform itself for yonks.
- All that Gravatar registration does, is that it issues / allows a “Picture” or “image” to be used with a certain E-Mail Account – to be used as a Gravatar – apart from that there is no hook-up to Gravatar and certainly no privacy or security issues involved and neither does any part of our Database move over to any Third Party, integrity fully in tact.
To sum up folks, using Gravatar takes nothing away from Rugby-Talk, all propriety matter stays resident and neither does it compromise you, the reader, at all in any privacy or security stakes… it just gives you a usable “image” to use as an Avatar or in this case a Gravatar!
It has always been and will continue to be Rugby-Talk’s policy to protect personal integrity and privacy and this move to use Gravatar stays perfectly within those bounds.
There are no risks involved, in relation to the added benefits we get by using Gravatar, none at all!
Under the Main Menu, under ABOUT, the instructions to create a Gravatar will also be published, for future reference.
At the moment the changes we have made is in a sort of “Beta-Test Phase”, as we still have to monitor how the website performs with the new design under busy conditions and how the changes impact on Rugby-Talk’s WEB HOSTING package at the third party web hosts we use.
Hopefully it is lighter, tighter, faster, sleek and much easier on shared resources and provides a much more seemless experience to all of us.
From first indications on Friday, Saturday and today, it performs to expectations and we have had the opportunity to see how it performs under heavy load when the website is extremely busy during our LIVE GAME ARTICLES on the weekend. So far, I am extremely happy and I have not had any complaints, just numerous compliments, for which I thank you.
Any suggestions on additions and further changes will be duly considered and welcomed with open arms. This is after all a community which caters for and cares for each other, one built on mutual respect and a common love for the sport we enjoy so much, Rugby Union!