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Author: Subject: Ultimate Guide to the SpicyLemons
jent
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icon1.gif posted on 2-19-07 at 10:15 AM   «:|:»  Link to post
Ultimate Guide to the SpicyLemons



There are tons and tons of features on our site. So many that not even moderators and editors understand and know them all. This is the all you need to know guide about the BBD. Here are details about every little feature on the site that not everyone knows how to use. Some are pretty basic, but most features are unique to most other forums.

NOTE** There is something that is slightly diffrent about this article from other articles. This article will be CLOSED to comments. Since this is basicly a how to about the site if you wish to make comments it may be better to place those comments into the Questions and Recommendations Board.





Table of Contents:
General Site Features:Photo Gallery Features:Forum Features:Where to go on the forums:



Before we start getting into the meat and bones of the SpicyLemons (big bud den). Lets look at the website and see where the more basic and general features are. All these features can be accessed from the homepage.

https Access (SSL):

Many people worry about privacy, and I want to be able to give that desire. With https it encrypts your information between the den and your machine, making it harder for anyone else to see what your doing and accessing. It is very easy, all you have to do is add an extra s in your url, so it is: https://den.spicylemons.com.

You can set it up so you always use https too in your settings. There is a check box titled 'Always force https', which will make it so that when ever you are logged in it will ensure that you are using the secure, and encrypted, version of the site.

The first time you access the page you may get several warnings. These warnings are because we use self signed certificates. It is nothing to be concerned with, it provides the same level of security and protection, it is just cheaper for us. Just accept the certificate, and continue on, and enjoy.
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Chat Room:

Sometimes we want to be able to have quick rapid conversation. That is what the chat room is for. The chat room will pull your username if your logged into the forums when you join. If your not logged in, or unregistered, or someone already is using your username....then you will receive a randomly generated name. It is easy to pop in and out of the chat room since the link to go to the chat room is at the top of the forums. Or you can navigate to it using the left side link bar on other pages.
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File Uploader (disabled due to abuse):

Sometimes we need to upload a quick file online. This could be to share with friends, or it could be because you need the file at another computer. Well the SpicyLemons offers a file uploader. You do not need an account to use this feature, but it will only accept files smaller than 2MB. Also if the file has an extension that is used by the server than that file will be renamed to have a .txt extension.
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File Uploader

Homepage:

The SpicyLemons homepage is your portal to the site. We offer lots of good resources for navigating the site to exactly where you want to go. Lets look at exactly what is on the homepage. First you will notice the links to many site features on the left side of the page. This link menu can collapse or expand depending on how cluttered you want the screen to look. On the opposite right side you will see the current SpicyLemons poll. This is a site poll that is cycled at random and is just for fun. You don't need to be registered to vote. Just below that, you will see some previews to articles. This is the last 5 new articles submitted by one of our editors. You can click the editors name to see their profile, you can also click "read more" to view the full article and have the option to post your own comments. Below the article previews you will see two gray boxes. The one on the left holds the last ten articles. But instead of being listed in the order of which they were added they are ordered by which one was last commented. So when someone posts a comment about an article, it will then be moved to the top of the list. Next to that on the right, we see the last 10 active threads for the whole forums. Keep in mind that this box will not include any articles, or threads posted in the news board. Speaking of news, right below that you will notice a written news section. This is major site news that does not often change, but since the homepage is the first place most people come, it is a good place to post about new features around the site. Below that are links for the last two active news topics inside the News and Announcements board. News posted here is usually more up to date, but often not as major. It is a good idea to watch both these areas for site news. The written news is dated clearly so you know exactly if anything has changed.
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Homepage

Pastebin:

One feature that is nice but not used enough is the Pastebin. The pastebin allows you to send very large amounts of text over the internet. But instead of having to paste all your text, all you have to do is paste it to the pastebin and give that person the link that the pastebin will give you. This is particularly nice if you want to send a lot of text over the chat room. Instead of flooding the room with tons of lines of text just give them one line that is a link to exactly what you want them to read.
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Pastebin

Podcast:

Another service we offer is the Podcast. This is a recording of a KCSU radio show done locally in Colorado. The podcast features modern jazz that may otherwise be hard to find. We invite you to read the description on the podcast page. If you would like instructions on setting up the podcast with itunes please go to this thread.
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Podcast




The SpicyLemons photo gallery is so detailed and powerful that we felt it needed a section of its own. The photo gallery is great for killing some time looking at people, places, and funny pictures from all around. Secondly, you could upload or add an already online photo to the gallery to easily share it with others. No matter what side of the gallery you are on there are a few things to note about using it.....

Including photos in post:

We have made it very easy to include photos in your post. If the photo is already in the gallery then all you have to do is browse the gallery to the photo. Then under the photo and towards the bottom you will see a little text box. All you have to do is copy that text in the box and paste it into your post. Then the photo will be included in your post for everyone to see. **NOTE, this only works if your posting to the BBD....You can NOT use this to post photos in the SpicyLemons gallery onto any other site.
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Post Photo Code

Photo Gallery Comments:

Want to ask a question about a photo? Or maybe post what you think? Well then just simply add a comment to the photo. Just click the "Comments" Link at the bottom of the page.
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Add Comments

Photo Gallery Stars:

Want to vote on how good a photo is? Just give it a star rating. The rating of the photo will be averaged over all the votes. To do this just simply click "Rate Photo" at the bottom of the page.

Alternatively you can rate photos directly from the topic activity page. If you are logged into the forums and click "topic activity" then you will see the 5 latest images at the bottom. If you have not already rated the photos then the star images under the photos are links. Clicking on a star will automatically submit that vote for the image. The stars will be displayed so that there current rating is right there for everyone to see.
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Rate Photo

Photo Gallery Upload and Add photo:

If you wish to share a photo with us in the gallery there are a couple ways you can add your photo to the gallery. First go under the album that best fits your photo. Then if your photo is already online click "Add Photo". The next step is to just give the URL (internet address) of the photo, and a quick name for it. If your photo is not already online then you may need to upload it to the gallery. Next to the "Add Photo" link there is also a "Upload Photo" link. The Upload Photo will allow you to browse to the photo on your local hard drive and then upload it to the gallery for others to enjoy.
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Add or Upload Photo




Now that you understand the basics of the website lets get deep into the heart of the den.....the forums. The forums can be a bit intimidating at times. But when we slow down and look at each thing one step at a time you will no longer see them as the beast that they appear to be. In fact I think you will find that many of these features will make the forums easier and quicker to use.

Address Book:

If you have a number of users that are your friends on the forum it may be a good idea to add them to your address book. With your address book you can quickly and easily see if any of them are currently online. It can also make it a lot easier to send U2U's to that person.
If you click edit address book at the bottom of your book you can easily add or remove people from your address book.
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Editing Address Book

Address Book

Avatar:

An avatar is the image that will be shown under your name for all of your posts. You can store your own avatar to be displayed next to all your posts. You can upload an avatar image if you wish. Or you can point to a URL where the image is already online. The max size for an avatar is 125x125 pixels. You can upload images as large as long as they are smaller than 9728bytes.
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Avatar Settings

Board Navigation:

If you wish to move quickly around the forums you can use the board selector located also on the right side of the forums. This drop down menu is available at both the top and bottom of the page.
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Code Box:

If you wish to have text in a post that someone can select and copy, then a code box may be the way to go. It is pretty simple as shown in this example.
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Code Box

Control Panel/User Settings:

Under your Control Panel, located on the top right of the forum header, you have access to a world of personal options. When you first get to the page you will have a quick refrence to your settings: your favorite threads (figure A), your address book (figure B), and your fifteen last U2U messages (figure C). If you click on "Edit Profile" (located at pointer D), then a you have access to many user options. Here you can update your personal info, make a short bio blob about yourself, adjust your signature on the forums, change theme settings, change how many threads and post are displayed per page, as well as your avatar settings.
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Forum User Control Panel

Editing post:

Sometimes we make mistakes, or we forget something. It is easy to fix these things. By clicking the edit button located at the top of your post you can go back in and change, remove, or add things. This can help prevent another thread and possible confusion for other people.
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Edit Location

Favorites:

There are many threads that I personally want to keep track of. It could be because it is an interesting topic that I want to easily find again. Or it could be a topic that you like to add to, but it could be a long time between posts. Well that is what adding a thread to your favorites is for. It allows you to keep a list of threads that you may want to go back to someday, and don't want to search through all the forums as it gets buried in other threads.
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Favorites

Last Post Movement:

If you want to catch back up on a thread you were reading earlier. You can go to the thread listed in today's post or the forum it is under. And instead of clicking the forum click the yellow arrow on the right. This will scroll you down the page to the last post you have not read. Note this can have issues if your using multiple computers, and it may be offset if the thread has images on it.
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Last Post Arrow

Moving to the homepage:

There are a couple ways you can get to the homepage. You can click the header image located at the top of the forums. You can also click the "back to home" image on the right side of the forums page.
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Go Home

Movement Arrows:

Additionally you can move up and down the page on the forums using the up and down arrows on the right side of the forums. This can make it easy to scroll long pages when you know what you want is close to the bottom. Or you may want to go up to reach links near the top after you read through a long thread.
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arrows

Notepad:

Every user has a "notepad" associated with their account. This allows them to save text to the site and it moves with the account. So you can start writing text, save it....and pull it back up on a different computer. This is a private means to store personal text. Many use this feature to start long post that they don't have time to finish in one sitting. The notepad feature can be located from the forum index. The link is located on your utility bar as seen in this picture....
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Notepad

RSS Feed:

We all see it....that little yellow box located next to the address bar. What does this funny icon do?

RSS Icon

Well it is called a live bookmark. Using firefox (or other RSS readers) you can have it so it creates a folder. In this folder the newest threads on the forums will always be listed. That way if you want to see the most recent active threads all you have to do is check your bookmarks. It updates automatically and is completely hands off. In firefox all you have to do is click the icon and tell it where you want your bookmark folder to be, just like this:

RSS Add Bookmark

Once that is done you will be able to have a live bookmark which will look like this:

Live Bookmark

You can set it up for other RSS feed readers using the rss feed links on the forums, forum index, or you can subscribe to just a board by adding it while browsing a specific board. The setup will differ between different RSS clients.
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Search Function:

Sometimes there is a thread that you know you have seen before, but just can't quite remember where it is. Well the forum search function will help you find that thread quickly and easily. Just put as much information as you remember and let it go. Also if you think we might have talked about a subject before, the search function is a good idea before posting a new topic and looking like a n00b. It is always better to bring old threads back form the dead than clutter the forums with a million threads of the same topic.
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Search Button Location

Stats Page:

Located at the bottom of the forum index there are a few common used board stats. You can see the last member to join, total threads and replies, most active member of the day, and more here. If you click on the words "Board Statistics" it will take you to another stats page. This one is more detailed with most viewed threads and other list like items.
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Stats Bar

Theme Change:

If you don't like the default lighter SpicyLemons theme, then you have the option to change it. Under your user control panel you just need to go to "edit profile". Once you are there, a little lower on the page you will have a drop down list of available Theme Options. If you don't like this theme we recommend switching back to "SpicyLemons-dark". It was the previous theme and is highly supported. You can view screenshots and more details about the theme inside this news article: SpicyLemons Theme Change News Article
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U2U Messenger:

The U2U instant messenger is the idea way to privately contact other forum members. The U2U messenger conveniently notifies you if you have a new message on the top right side of the header bar. Inside your profile settings you can also set it to notify you with a pop-up window on new messages. This is designed to be un-obtrusive and can be set for just the forum index, or all pages, or disabled fully.
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New U2U

You can access your U2U messenger a couple ways. You can open it via the U2U link on the bottom right of the header box. Or from the forum index you can click on "U2U Instant Messenger". You can also start a U2U message already setup by clicking the "U2U" image at the bottom of the users post.
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U2U User

User Last Login:

An additional feature to Whos Online is when you look at the box below the who's online and see who has been on in the last 24 hours. If you move your pointer over one of the names it will show you what time they were last on the forums.
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UserName Click:

When you are reading a post sometimes you may want to respond directly to a person. Using a quote is great if their post is a ways back, but if your close to their post you may just want to have it directed towards that user. If you click on the users name it will put there name in the quick reply box at the bottom of that page. That way you are ready to start writing a post with it already directed at that person, as shown in this screenshots.
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Username Quick Reply

Who's Online:

If you wish to see who is online at any given page you can look at the bottom of the page on the forum index If you click "Who's Online" in the title bar then you will be taken to a page and you can exactly what page each user is currently on.
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Who is Online




Now that you know how to use all the features of the SpicyLemons, there are several places to know about to get help and see updates. These boards are important for not just new people coming to the forum, but people who are pro....

Faces And Places Board:

Want to break the ice, maybe get that first post out of the way. Well a great way to do it is post a little bit about yourself in the Faces And Places Board. This is also a great place to post information about local events. Or tell us about a experience or adventure that you had. Anything like that would be great in this board.
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News And Announcements Board:

This board is where you will find the most up to date and accurate status about the site. Only jent can post in here to ensure that it is a clean exchange of information. If you have any comments or suggestions please post them in the Questions And Suggestions Board. Otherwise it is good to pay attention to threads in here because they will often contain detailed information about new features.
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Questions And Suggestions Board:

If you have a question about how to do anything on the site. Or possibly a recommendation about how we can make the site better. Well we would love for you to post a thread in the Questions And Suggestions Board.
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View User's ProfileView All Posts By UserU2U Memberjent's Aim
jent
Chief Shaman
*********


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Posts: 2122
Registered: 5-19-06
Location: above ground
karma Rating: 15 karma: 15
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Member is Offline

Mood: Hanging in there

[*] posted on 2-19-07 at 10:18 AM   «:|:»  Link to post


NOTE.....as said earlier this article is going to be locked so that it can be modified and stay current as the den evolves. Due to the nature of the article if you want to post comments, suggestions, or questions please do it from this board:
http://den.spicylemons.com/forumdisplay.php?fid=3

We hope this is not confusing....and we welcome comments. It is just that we basically have a whole board for comments on this topic. Needless to say this is probably the only article that will be locked like this.....
View User's ProfileView All Posts By UserU2U Memberjent's Aim
jent
Chief Shaman
*********


Avatar


Posts: 2122
Registered: 5-19-06
Location: above ground
karma Rating: 15 karma: 15
/ +
Member is Offline

Mood: Hanging in there

[*] posted on 10-20-08 at 09:47 AM   «:|:»  Link to post


Updated changed links, and also added in a section about using ssl, and included a few small references to the new u2u alert feature...I hope to add more to this guide in the near future
View User's ProfileView All Posts By UserU2U Memberjent's Aim


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