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Socialtext releases simple editing

Socialtext now allows Simple mode easy text editing, which works much like a word processor, providing What You See Is What You Get (WYSIWYG) editing for wikis. When you're editing a page, you can click on the toolbar buttons to format text, and your changes will appear on the screen right away.

Simple mode editing is not intended to be a complete word processor or HTML editor. It supports the same basic formatting as previous versions of Socialtext, with the added benefit of seeing formatting changes as you make them.

You will still need to use Advanced mode for some actions such as editing tables, editing links, and including images in the page.

Since Simple mode makes common formatting tasks so easy, we are providing it early in its evolution. You may find bugs. Please let us know at support@socialtext.com

Here are some hints and tips:

  • Use the Preview link before saving, and Edit More if you need to. Switch to Advanced mode when Simple mode doesn't do what you need. Click the Edit tips link to get a list formatting punctuation for Advanced mode.
  • Some things your browser will let you do in Simple mode won't "take" when you Save. Examples are interactively resizing a table or an image, deleting an image, or indenting a list. A few other things, such as deleting an entire table, you may not be able to do at all.
  • Most of the special punctuation available in Advanced mode (see edit tips) will translate into formatting upon saving.
  • Copy and paste from a web page or a word processor will preserve some, but not all, of the appearance of the page once it is saved in the workspace.
  • Avoid frustration: save early; save often. The workspace maintains a complete revision history, so you can always revert to your last good page if needed.

Simple mode is based on the Socialtext open source Wikiwyg project.

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Socialtext announces simple editing

Socialtext now allows Simple mode easy text editing, which works much like a word processor, providing What You See Is What You Get (WYSIWYG) editing for wikis. When you're editing a page, you can click on the toolbar buttons to format text, and your changes will appear on the screen right away.

Simple mode editing is not intended to be a complete word processor or HTML editor. It supports the same basic formatting as previous versions of Socialtext, with the added benefit of seeing formatting changes as you make them.

You will still need to use Advanced mode for some actions such as editing tables, editing links, and including images in the page.

Since Simple mode makes common formatting tasks so easy, we are providing it early in its evolution. You may find bugs. Please let us know at support@socialtext.com

Here are some hints and tips:

  • Use the Preview link before saving, and Edit More if you need to. Switch to Advanced mode when Simple mode doesn't do what you need. Click the Edit tips link to get a list formatting punctuation for Advanced mode.
  • Some things your browser will let you do in Simple mode won't "take" when you Save. Examples are interactively resizing a table or an image, deleting an image, or indenting a list. A few other things, such as deleting an entire table, you may not be able to do at all.
  • Copy and paste from a web page or a word processor will preserve some, but not all, of the appearance of the page once it is saved in the workspace.
  • Avoid frustration: save early; save often. The workspace maintains a complete revision history, so you can always revert to your last good page if needed.

Simple mode is based on the Socialtext open source Wikiwyg project.

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Socialtext announces RSS support

Socialtext Workspace now supports Really Simple Syndication (RSS).

You can use the Socialtext RSS feature to get notified of the the latest updates in workspace projects and conversations, without contributing to your overloaded email inbox.

This is particularly handy if you are participating in multiple workspaces. It's also useful for applications where it's important to stay on top of what's new, like service requests and bug reports.

RSS allows you to subscribe to many other weblogs and published news sources and have the content pulled to you automatically, so you don't need to go to multiple websites.

To read RSS, you'll need a tool called a news reader. Some of the more popular news readers include:

  • Web-based: Bloglines -- free
  • Windows-based: FeedDemon -- trial available, $30 price
  • Windows-based: SharpReader -- free
  • Microsoft Outlook-based: NewsGator -- 14 day trial, $30 price
  • Mac-based: NetNewsWire -- 30 day trial, $40 price

For more about using RSS, see the RSS Tutorial.

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Socialtext announcements

This weblog category is for announcements from Socialtext of
new software versions, advanced notice of system downtime, and
other items of general interest to users and hosts of the system.

thanks

Ed

Edward Vielmetti
support@socialtext.com

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Socialtext 2.0 released

Socialtext 2: Better looking and more usable

Today Socialtext 2.0 was released on all Personal and Professional Workspaces. We had an extended beta period to enable our customers to adapt to what's new, plan transitions and solicit broader feedback. Thank you to all who participated.

PC Magazine reviewed the beta:

Socialtext 2.0, released in mid-September, is decidedly hip. Nowadays, all the hippest products allude to that indescribable entity called Web 2.0. Like the old Socialtext, this new version is a wonderfully convenient alternative to e-mail. It's a free-form Web site where colleagues can share ideas, plans, calendars, agendas, and documents—you name it. Rather than sifting through clogged Microsoft Outlook inboxes and wasting precious minutes on poorly organized conference calls, everyone can deal with almost everything at a central online location.

The new version is even easier to use. A “dashboard,” a page for managing your wikis (the company says each user juggles about three), sits on the surface, giving you access to everything underneath. This brings a bit more order to the whole Socialtext experience but doesn’t hamper the free-form editing that makes wikis so useful.

Socialtext 2 is intended to be more beautiful and more useful. The UI has been redesigned to be more clean and less cluttered. And we fixed a number of usability problems that got in the way of fast and productive wiki use. People have been telling us in testing that it makes Socialtext easier to use, and easier to get colleagues to start using. We hope you agree.

Better navigation, and less clutter

Socialtext 1 had accumulated many useful features to help you get around the workspace, but the interface was crowded, especially around the top menu and sidebar of each workspace page. The pages looked busy and cluttered, and the multitude of choices was confusing to many people. Useful features were hidden so that few people found them.

For Socialtext 2.0, we pulled the user interface apart into separate sections that serve different purposes. A personal dashboard helps users orient themselves, and has jumping off points for further navigation. For reading and editing, pages are simpler and more streamlined, and provide easy access to page-related information like tags, attachments and backlinks. Lists of things like recently changed pages, tags, and files, are grouped in a common list view interface, to make it easier to browse the contents of the workspace quickly.

The personal dashboard serves as "home" in private wikis by default. If you'd prefer a traditional "wiki home page", you can do that too. There's a settings for admins to set the home page.

Tags and attachments

It is very useful to be able to upload and refer to files, and to be able to tag pages to improve search and navigation. But these features were too hard to use. Socialtext 2 makes tagging and file upload easier.

More usability improvements

The "print" function is easier to find, and the rename action now takes fewer steps. When you make a new page, you can't overwrite an old page by accident.

More detail

For more detail about the improvements in S2, see Release Notes for Socialtext 2.0.

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Release Notes for Socialtext 2.6.3 - KinoSearch

Socialtext 2.6 includes a major upgrade to the Socialtext search capability. For information about the previous release, see Release Notes for Socialtext 2.2

The new search features and improvements include:

Stemming

KinoSearch uses stemming, which indexes and searches on the roots of words. For example, if you search for the word "walk", the search engine will also find "walked" and "walking". The stemming feature is currently configured for English. In a future upgrade, we will add the ability to select other languages.

Symbols and other content types

The new search engine includes support for additional content types:

  • Version and part numbers, such as 1-229669712-23, 767-25A1234, 1.9.16
  • Mixed alphanumerics, such as 100, S2, and 43folders
  • Symbols such as $10.23, -100.4, 8.82%, -19%, 0.80%, .80%, $100, €100
  • Reliable wildcard matching on the ends of words: search for wiki* will match wiki, wiki-wiki, and wikinomics.
  • Reliable indexing and search on UTF-8 encoded tokens, particularly multi-byte character sets such as Chinese.

Tag searches and title searches use all of the above features: numbers, alphanumerics, symbols, wildcards, UTF-8, and stemming.

Faster Indexing

Indexing is faster. When new content is added, the new content is available for searching sooner. If the index needs to be completely rebuilt, the re-indexing is much faster as well.

Tag is a synonym for category

tag: is a synonym for category: in the Search box.

Better searching of files uploaded before Socialtext 2.2

The upgrade to Socialtext 2.2, which was released on the Socialtext hosted service in November, added a feature that improved searching of a variety of document types, including Word, Excel, and PDF. This improved searching applied to new files that were uploaded after the upgrade, but did not yet apply to files that were uploaded before the upgrade.

With the upgrade to Socialtext 2.6, older files have been re-indexed. You will now get better results when searching for content in files that were uploaded prior to the Socialtext 2.2 upgrade. For details on the file search features, see Release Notes for Socialtext 2.2.

About KinoSearch

The upgraded search feature replaces the Plucene-based search engine with KinoSearch.

KinoSearch a successor to Plucene. It is a newer, better, and faster Perl implementation of Lucene, a mature and respected Java-based open source search engine widely used in document applications.

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Release Notes for Socialtext 2.2

Socialtext 2.2 contains new features, improvements, and bugfixes for Socialtext 2.0. The Release Notes for Socialtext 2.0 describe the recent major upgrade to the Socialtext wiki.

Better support for searching attachments

We have improved the ability to index and search a number of popular file formats. You will now get better results from searching the following kinds of attached files.

  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Excel
  • Adobe PDF
  • Adobe Postscript
  • HTML
  • RTF
  • Generic XML documents
  • Compressed Zip archives
    • The contents of the zip archive are extracted and converted to text
  • MPEG-3 Audio Files
    • ID3 tags which contain file metadata are extracted

All other documents use a general-purpose string extraction program.

Better tag management

  • Tags that are not used on any page are automatically discarded. In order to delete an unwanted tag, go to the list of tags, view all pages with that tag, and remove the tag from any pages that contain it.
  • Tags can now be added while editing a page.
  • Page lists generated by clicking on a tag are sortable.
  • Tags appear in revision comparison view, so you can see which tags were added by which user at what time.

Improved support for rich email

  • Rich (HTML) email to the workspace is converted to wikitext with inline images.

Other Improvements

  • We have added back the option to see "What's New" and "Recently Viewed" pages in a sidebar box. Use the "What's New" and "Screen Layout" preferences in Settings to enable these options.
  • The workspaces list on the Dashboard contains your ten most recently visited workspaces. To see all your workspaces, click Your Workspaces on the Dashboard.
  • Weblog archives display faster for large number of archive entries.
  • Font sizes are reduced in wikiwyg Simple mode, headings (H1-H6) and tables.
  • The informative message about content that cannot be edited in Simple mode has returned.
  • Overall improvements to utf-8 character handling

Bug Fixes

  • In the "Save As ..." dialog for downloading attachments, the best filename is filled into the dialog box, such as yourImage.gif or yourDoc.doc.
  • In the admin interface, the Home link preference displays the default value (dashboard or central page) when first visited.
  • Cancel editing of weblog navigation returns to weblog view, just like saving weblog navigation.
  • Dynamic content (lists) displays correctly in Announcements and Links on the Dashboard.
  • Links in Announcements and Links on the Dashboard are secure links if the workspace is accessed via HTTPS.
  • Watchlist tab highlights correctly in list view.
  • Tags that contain raw HTML display reasonably (tags never should contain raw HTML; this is for backwards compatibility.)
  • Deleting a tag creates a new revision with a new revision number
  • Clicking Edit when logged out returns to the login page instead of generating an error.
  • Problems with saving new pages are fixed.
  • Minor wikiwyg bugs have been corrected.
  • Problems with search indexes after sysadmins purge pages are fixed
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Release Notes for Socialtext 2.12 - WikiWidgets


WikiWidgets

What is WikiWidgets?

WikiWidgets is a new user interface feature of Wikiwyg. In Simple Mode, where you previously saw greyed-out uneditable content such as a table of contents, included page, or search, you now see a WikiWidget. Click on the WikiWidget to bring up a form-based editor instead of entering Advanced mode to edit that content. Use the new Insert... pulldown menu to insert new WikiWidgets anywhere in a page in either Simple or Advanced mode. Use Preview to see what your page will look like, and Save to get the final content as usual.

What does a WikiWidget look like?

A WikiWidget is a clickable image containing text that tells you what the widget represents, such as an attached file, an image, or a search. You can find out about WikiWidgets by the example at Adding a link to another workspace .

WikiWidgets - More Options

Every form-based WikiWidget editor contains a More Options link. Click it to expand the interface and expose more fill-in fields for advanced options and for customized link text. Every More Options section also displays the exact wikitext that will be inserted into the page when the form is saved.

It is now possible to provide link text for every WikiWidget where that makes sense. For example, if you insert a WikiWidget for an attached file, use More Options in the WikiWidget interface to specify link text for the link to the attachment. Previously, there was no way to do that and the file name was always the link text.

If you provide link text for an attached image, the page will contain a link to the image instead of the image itself.

Help for WikiWidgets

Help has been updated to catalog and describe WikiWidgets. These are the Help pages of interest:

Using WikiWidgets
WikiWidgets Catalog
Adding a link to another workspace

WikiWidgets Screencast

You'll find a four minute screencast on WikiWidgets here. Have a look! The full-screen QuickTime version of the screencast is recommended for clarity.

Advanced mode is still needed

You'll still need Advanced mode for

  • editing tables in Internet Explorer. Firefox has a lovely built-in table editor (Add/Delete Row/Column) which you should use if at all possible
  • editing custom dynamic content (a.k.a. shortcuts) specific to your site
  • .pre and .html blocks
  • fixing whitespace issues
  • fixing malformed tables and wikitext, but WikiWidgets should prevent creating new malformed wikitext

Editing Hints and Tips

  • The WikiWidgets editor is a major upgrade. If you have a wiki page already loaded in your browser, you have to Shift-Reload (force reload) it to get the WikiWidgets editor for that page. If you move to a new page you will get the new editor. If the editor in a previously loaded page is behaving oddly, try Shift Reload.
  • You can upload files (and images) during editing using the Upload Files button, and use WikiWidgets to place links to those files exactly where in the page you want them, as a unified operation. When you use Upload Files, UNCHECK the box next to "Add a link to this attachment at the top of the page?" so no link is added automatically. Browse to and select any number of files (or images). Then insert an Attachment Link (or Attached Image) WikiWidget exactly where you want it in the page. When you Save, the files will be uploaded and the links (and images) will appear.
  • The browser may not let you place the insertion point next to an image, and WikiWidgets is implemented using clickable images. Instead:
    • Use Home to put the insertion point at the very beginning of the current line
    • Use End to put the insertion point at the very end of the current line
    • Use (multiple) Page Up followed by Home to put the insertion point at the very beginning of the editing window
    • Use (multiple) Page Down followed by End to put the insertion point at the very end of the editing window
    • To put the insertion point between two adjacent WikiWidgets, put the insertion point in the line above the two widgets just above the rightmost WikiWidget, and use Down Arrow to move the insertion point to between the WikiWidgets.

Known issues

  • In Internet Explorer, scrollbars may not appear in Preview mode. This will be fixed in a patch release. There are two workarounds:
    • Save, look at your page, then Edit again.
    • Use scrolling selection to scroll. To do that, hold down the mouse buttion and drag to either the top or bottom edge of the screen to initiate scrolling. Release the mouse button to stop, then click in the window to eliminate the selection feedback.

Other Changes for Socialtext 2.12

  • Socialtext Unplugged was upgraded with a number of bug fixes, particularly to sync when reconnected
  • Included pages are better integrated into the look of their including pages
  • Page rename will now honor case changes in page titles
  • IE 6 no longer freezes when Edit immediately follows Upload files
  • GMail no longer ignores Subject during Email To This Page
  • Neither page headers nor footers are added during PDF/Word export
  • A bug that prevented PDF/Word export under SSL on Internet Explorer was repaired
  • Email sent from Socialtext wikis are more robustly formatted to get through spam filters
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Release Notes for Socialtext 2.11 - Export to Word and PDF


Release Notes for Socialtext 2.11: Export to Word and PDF

Socialtext is pleased to announce the ability to export wiki pages to both MS Word and PDF formats. This makes it possible to author documents collaboratively in the wiki, and then to publish for broader audiences.

Export a Single Page to Word or PDF

The Tools menu at the top of the sidebar on each page has new items 'Export as PDF' and 'Export as Word'. Left-clicking on those items will cause the page to be output in either PDF format, or RTF format, which can be edited by Microsoft Word. Depending on your browser type and configuration, the document will open in the browser or a dialog will appear to open or save the document to your workstation.

Export Multiple Pages to Word or PDF

Any page list, such as What's New, Watchlist, All Pages, or a page list generated by search, now has checkboxes next to each list item. A new Export menu, with 'Export as PDF' and 'Export as Word' items, is in the upper right corner of the list view. Select the pages you wish to export by ticking their checkboxes, and select the export from the Export menu. Depending on your browser type and configuration, the document will open in the browser or a dialog will appear to open or save the document to your workstation.

Hints

  • The topmost checkbox is a Select All/Clear All checkbox to aid in rapid selection of pages.
  • The pages will be exported in the order they appear in the list, top to bottom. Use the column sorting links to sort alphabetically by title, or by date, or by editor to control page ordering.
  • To artificially create a particular ordering for pages, save them one by one in the desired order, then use date sort to order them by Last Edited Time.
  • Pages that contain dynamic content, such as included pages, search results, or RSS feeds, will be exported with the dynamic content fetched when the Export operation is invoked, which may not be the same as when the page was loaded into the browser.

Known limitations on Export

There are some known limitations on export functionality for this release. They are:

  1. PDF files are limited to around 30 pages. Your mileage may vary. This is due to an internal error in the third-party software used to create PDF files.
  2. Fonts are not preserved. Word documents are in serif font only, PDF in sans-serif only.
  3. Page breaks are indicated by horizontal rule separators in RTF. Page breaks are preserved in PDF.
  4. There are no headers or footers in Word documents. PDF documents have the title of their first page as their header throughout.
  5. UTF-8 character sets are not supported in PDF documents.
  6. Tables that are wider than the document page width may not show properly.

These limitations will be addressed in future releases.

It is not possible to create a perfect match between wiki page display, and display in PDF or Word, particularly with regard to the exact placement of images and tables.


Other Updates for Socialtext 2.11

  • RSS feeds may have 100 items per feed (up from 50).
  • "All Tags" view columns are sortable.
  • Weblogs print. Look for the printer icon at the top of weblog displays.
  • Display of email addresses in public wikis is obfuscated.
  • Raw HTML appearing in Copy/Paste from MS Office 2003 is gone.
  • Revision Compare display failure in IE 7 is fixed.
  • Intermittent browser error displaying All Tags and All Files in IE is fixed.
  • Other internal bug fixes and reliability improvements throughout the application.
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Release notes for Socialtext 2.0

Additions, Changes, and Fixes

This page details the major feature additions and changes in Socialtext 2.0 from the previous version, Socialtext 1.10. See Socialtext Documentation for a more detailed explanation of new features.



Additions

Personal dashboard

S2 features a new "personal dashboard", which pulls together different information sources to give you a better overview of your workspace. The dashboard presents What's new (recently changed pages), and "your watchlist" (recently changed pages that you are watching), and allows you to jump quickly to your most active workspaces. It also contains an "Announcements and Links" section for editable team navigation and announcements, and a "Notepad" for personal notes.

Rename page

There is a "rename page" feature that renames the page, and adds a link from the old page to the new page. This feature can be accessed from the Tools menu visible on every page.

Print

There is a new "print" feature that brings up a print dialog window. From there you can print the page, formatted for printing, without menus or sidebars. It is no longer necessary to make a "printer friendly" version before printing or print previewing.

Page view counter

At the bottom of the page, a counter now shows the number of times a page has been viewed.

Changes

Look and feel upgrade

Socialtext looks cleaner and more professional. The goal was to make Socialtext easier for you to use, and more inviting to your colleagues who haven't started using it yet.

Configurable "Home"

The Home link in the top left-hand corner is now set by default to the personal dashboard for private workspaces (workspaces where all users need to log in to view). For public workspaces (where users can view pages without logging in), the Home link is set by default to a workspace page. A workspace administrator can set the home link to be either the dashboard or a workspace page.

"Recent Changes" becomes "What's New"

The feature that allows you to view the recent modifications to pages in the wiki is now called "What's New".

New Page now in dashboard; overwrite warning

The New Page button no longer appears on individual pages. It can be found on the dashboard.

Also, the New Page feature now gives you a warning when you try to save a new page with the same title as an existing page. It prompts you to save the page with a new title, or append your content to the existing page.

Content moved from sidebar boxes to the dashboard

The following content sections previously found in the page sidebar have been moved to the dashboard:

  • The "Workspace Navigation" section has been moved to the Dashboard and renamed "Announcements and Links"
  • The "My Favorites" section has been moved to the Dashboard and renamed "Personal Notes"
  • The "My Workspaces" section has been moved to the Dashboard and renamed "Your Workspaces"
  • The "Recent Changes" section has been moved to the Dashboard and renamed "What's New"

Tabbed List view

Features that show lists of items, including "What's New", "All Pages, "All Tags" (formerly categories), and "All Files", have been reorganized to look similar, and to be accessible in a tabbed view that lets you easily scan content. The List view can be accessed by visiting "What's New".

Content moved from sidebar boxes to list view

The following content sections previously found in the page sidebar have been moved.

  • "Recent Changes" has been renamed "What's New". It can be found on the dashboard and on the "What's New" tab in list view.
  • "Recently Viewed" can be found on the "Recently Viewed" tab in list view.

"Categories" become "Tags"

The "Categories" feature has been renamed Tags. The process of adding a tag has been simplified, and there is a new "look-ahead" feature that gives you hints about existing tags.

Page History renamed to Revisions

The feature that allows you to view previous revisions of a page is now called "Revisions".

Email button

A new email button lets you send the page you're viewing via email.

Export as HTML

The feature formerly known as "Printer-friendly" has been renamed "Export as HTML". It can be found in the Tools menu on every page.

Upload file

You can now upload a file while you are editing a page. The file upload feature has been simplified to enable file uploading with fewer steps. When you open the file upload window, you can now upload multiple files before going back to editing or viewing.

Editing window size

The editing window now sizes itself automatically to the size of your browser window.

Edit and comment controls at the bottom of the page

There are small "edit" and "comment" links at the bottom of each page, to make it easier to edit or comment if you've scrolled to the bottom of a long page.

Changed stylesheet

For users who had custom skins designed for previous versions of Socialtext: the CSS classes and identifiers have been changed and reorganized. Custom skins will need to be changed to match the new CSS structure.

Known issues

  • You cannot add a tag while editing a page.
  • Some content is not editable in Simple mode. You need to go to Advanced mode to edit links and images, and to add/remove table rows and columns in Internet Explorer. The section of the interface that explains how to edit this content is missing.
  • Adding a tag creates a new revision that is identical to the previous revision except for the tag.
  • When comparing previous revisions, you can't see tags that have been added and deleted.
  • The Safari browser does not have access to "simple mode" editing.
  • In Safari, the "delete attachment" action fails silently, and the attachment is not deleted.
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Weblog Navigation
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Weblog Archives
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Upload Files

Click "Browse" to find the file you want to upload. When you click "Upload file" your file will be uploaded and added to the list of attachments for this page.

Maximum file size: 50MB

 
 
 
File Name Author Date Uploaded Size

Save Page As

Enter a meaningful and distinctive title for your page.

Page Title:

Tip: You'll be able to find this page later by using the title you choose.

Page Already Exists

There is already a page named XXX. Would you like to:

Save with a different name:

Save the page with the name "XXX"

Append your text to the bottom of the existing page named: "XXX"

Upload Files

Click "Browse" to find the file you want to upload. When you click "Add file" this file will be added to the list of attachments for this page, and uploaded when you save the page.

 
 
 
Add Tags

Enter a tag and click "Add tag". The tag will be saved when you save the page.

Tag: 

Suggestions: