BuddyPress 1.5 – The Best Parts

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BuddyPress 1.5 – The Best Parts

The creators behind the original Buddypress have released the BETA version of the next iteration of the software (Buddypress 1.5). This is a long awaited update that drastically improves both the performance and functionality of the Buddypress Core. As a developer there have been several substantial improvements, here’s a few of my favourites:

  • Phantom Pages – Killed
    Originally in BP, the primary pages such as community, members, groups, where set up as “phantom pages”.  This was a tricky little hack, that spoke with .htaccess to display the correct BP page. This has all changed to a more WP friendly setup where these core pages actually have real “pages” that can be organized easily in the navigation, called with wp_list_pages, and can also have an editable title and URL path.
  • Improvements in CSS
    No more tables, consistent styles across paging and button formats, less variation in avatar sizes. Many updates have been completed on the CSS side of things to make the whole BP core easier to theme; such as improvements to the CSS structure and child theming, smarter looking default loops for forumns and members, and style_enque scripts rather then nested @import references. As of the begining of September, we have renovated 2 BP websites to utilize this new default CSS, a simple and quick update.
  • Buddypress default theme rebuilt
    The BP core theme, although it worked great, has always had a few little issues, such as subnavigations, tables, number counts contained in () rather then a proper div. This has been greatly improved to provide a more stable, consistent, and accesible foundation to work from for new themes. As we start almost all of our custom themes from the BP default theme, this is a great advantage and time saver for us.
  • Skeleton Component for building plug-ins
    This isn’t really related to BP 1.5  directly, however for developing new plug-ins the open source community has produced a fantastic skeleton component which provides a detailed example of how to properly setup and distribute plug-ins for compatible with Buddypress 1.5
  • Installation and options panel
    I shudder to think how much programming time the upgrade / update BP tools took to build. Whether migrating from a previous version, or installing a new site, the BP install process and options panel has grown and evolved to accomodate for upgrading your website quickly and easily. You can also adjust the whole “pages” aspect of the BP 1.5 and assign which BP components will be displayed on  which page.
  • Core Component Class
    A singlular component class allows the registering of a new component or reference of existing core components.
  • Improvements to Buddypress Core
    Near 700 tickets resolved.

If your interested in watching Boone Georges presentation on Buddypress 1.5, check it out here:

Or visit the developer community at Buddypress.org to see the newest evolutions:
http://buddypress.org/community/groups/how-to-and-troubleshooting/