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Website BBCode Engine Rewrite And Impacts

#1 2019-10-03 17:39:02
Due to some long standing issues with the BBCode parsing here on the website, I have decided to completely rewrite the BBCode parsing engine. The result is a greatly improved engine (I think) that fixes a lot of the previous little issues, although it does come with some breaking changes and depreciation of some tags.

In this post I will describe the changes that have been brought on by this new engine rewrite.

Hashtags

I am removing the #hashtag feature from the site, and the "Trending Tags" page will be going away as well. This feature was never used anyway, and parsing out the # symbol from hashtags has always been a major pain, as it conflicted with specifying hex color codes (like #ff0000) in several BBCode tags. It also had a tendency to create hashtags in places where you didn't want one. So from now on, the hashtag is gone, Twitter can have it.

box, transbox and align property

The forum had the box and transbox tags, which accepted an align property, allowing you to "float" the box to the left or right of a post. The regular box tag also had a separate property you could set to specify the background color. In addition, the img tag also had an optional alignment property. To me this was all a jumbled mess, and I wanted to change things up so that each tag was constrained to a specific purpose.

For this reason, I have changed things up a bit. Firstly, the align property has been removed from boxes and images. Now if you want to align any element, you can place it inside the new float tag, which takes an argument of left or right, which will align the element to the left or right of the post, wrapping text content around it.

Next, the transbox tag has been depreciated, and replaced with the new container tag. Existing transboxes will convert to the new container syntax. The container tag is used to constrain elements, like images, to a specific size, and requires the size attribute. It works like this:

Code:
[container=180]This text would be constrained into a block with a width of 180px.[/container]
Result:
This text would be constrained into a block with a width of 180px.


To replicate the old transbox align property, you would simply place the container tag inside of the new float tag.

Look at me, I am a totally helpful tip off to the side here!
The box tag loses the align and width specification properties, with it's only property now being able to set the background color. To set the width or alignment, you would place a box inside of a container and a float, like so.
[float=right][container=200][box=#B3E5FC]Look at me, I am a totally helpful tip off to the side here![/box][/container][/float]

Spoiler, Collapse, and Popup Labels

When you use the spoiler, collapse, or popup tags with a custom label attribute, all text in the custom label must now be placed inside of quotes.

Code:
[popup="Quotes Needed"]If you do not have quotes, only the first word in the label will appear![/popup]
Result:


Horizontal Lines and Continue Reading

Tags with no ending tag are no longer supported, with the exception of the [*] bullet tag inside of a list. Because of this, the hr tag now needs to be matched with an ending tag.

Code:
[hr][/hr]
and
[hr=#ff0000][/hr]
Result:

and

In addition, the more tag, which can be used on Blog format walls/profiles to add a shortened version of your post on the main blog page with a "Continue Reading" link, must now also be ended in the same way. Failing to end the more tag will cut off the remainder of your post!

Auto Links

I am also removing the feature that automatically created links. So instead of https://www.ape-apps.com/ being automatically turned into a clickable link, you must now specifically place it into a url tag. The reason for this one relates to spammers, who traditionally make a post full of url's that automatically get turned into links back to their spam content. I figure that it's not overly difficult to just put your link inside of a url tag if you really need an external link.

Conclusion

Beyond these changes, I think most things should work as before, although the code change was pretty big so I am sure there are some things that are no longer working. I have updated the Code Reference page with new examples of all of the tags. Let me know in this thread if you find errors, or if you have requests for new BBCode tags to be added!
Owner of Ape Apps
Edited by bastecklein on 2019-10-03 19:20:53
#2 2019-10-04 03:37:23
is there still a way to ping a user? like the old @cry8wolf9
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#3 2019-10-04 16:17:33
I did not intend to remove the @cry8wolf9 mentions, I will work on it in a bit and try to fix it.
Owner of Ape Apps
#4 2019-10-06 16:04:59
Woot it's back thanks I use it a good amount.
Questions?
Concerns?
Feeling lonely?
Feel free to get in touch with me via message or heading over to
https://discord.gg/tsBg6Ec
Welcome
Ape Apps is an independent software development company founded in 2010 by Brandon Stecklein. Over the years, Ape Apps has published over 400 apps and games across various platforms. You can get in touch with Brandon on Twitter or by leaving a post on his wall @bastecklein
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