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How To Use The New Itchy Dog Social Features
I know you're all a smart bunch of puppies; that's why you play on Itchy Dog. Am I right?
And I'm fairly sure you'll all find your way around this new stuff quite easily, so I just wanted to point out a few things to get you going.
There are four main components to all this:
EasySocial - this is the activity stream and basis for your site profile
EasyDiscuss - this is the new forum system
EasyBlog - this is the new blogging feature that lets you write your own stuff on the site
Komento - this is the commenting system
Now, the neat thing is, these are all integrated; your profile is consistent across all of them and your activities in each earn you XP Points that go towards Achievement Badges. (More on this later).
This is the core of your profile on the site where you set your avatar, add friends, post pics of your builds, and generally do all that social network stuff. You'll see a blue toolbar just under the main menu where you'll see notifications and if you click on your name, you'll get a menu for all the main features. (You'll see this toolbar on the blog and forum too).
Almost everything you do here earns you XP, so go ahead and install some Apps, add friends and upload some pics.
OK, this is a bit different to the old forum style, but give it a go and I think you'll like it.
The old forum categories are still there and you can get to the category list from the Community Menu, hit the "Post a Topic" button and off you go. (If you hit that button on the latest/featured posts page, it will default to Woof, but you can select another category).
You can add a post type from the drop down (optional), and you can add tags from a list (also optional).
If you start typing a post, it will suggest similar topics, so you can join those discussions or just carry on and make a new one. It's up to you. You can also mark replies as answers (handy if you asked a question, and everyone gets some XP). You'll also get XP Points for posting, or even just reading.
Got something more substantial to say? Want to do a write up on Itchy Dog, or Bukkit, or your favourite Let's Play? Or even anything else you can think of...
Go into Itchy Blog and start typing. You can upload your images into your own media folder or the shared folder. (You can also grab images from the shared folder to use. Add a category and some tags if you feel like it and then submit your post.
Regular users will need to wait for approval before the blog post is published but Deputies and up will be able to auto publish right away.
If you write a few good posts, then you can get auto publish rights, so let's see what you've got to say :)
Also, you'll earn XP Points for blogging :)
This is the commenting system; you can comment pretty much anywhere on the site. Guess what? You'll earn XP Points!
XP and Achievements
So, where does all this XP go? Depending on what points you earn and what activities you get up to, you'll earn Achievement Badges that will show on your profile page. You can see the current Badges on the Community Menu; just click on a Badge to see what you need to earn it, and who got there before you ;)
If you have any ideas for new Badges, then just post in the forum with a Badge name and what the requirements are.