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ChefTalk Future Changes

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
Dear ChefTalk Community,

I am really excited to tell you about some new things that will take effect soon here at ChefTalk. For the past couple months, we have been working on some changes that I hope you will find very exciting.

For those of you who don't know, ChefTalk was established over 10 years ago! Through that time we have done our best to make the right decisions regarding the site and the community in order to keep us growing and to keep it interesting. While I think we have done a pretty decent job with the resources we have, we have a deep desire to offer you a more uniform site with more seamless functionality.


Why, You Ask?
Let me give you an example. Imagine you've come to the site looking for help or ideas to cook salmon. You hit the forums, search for "cooking salmon," and get threads that the forum spits out. But we also have some great articles on the main site about cooking salmon, such as "Salmon Primer, " by chef Joe George. Most users don't know this and usually end up only going with the forum threads. Wouldn't it be great if, when you searched for a specific topic, you not only saw all of the forum threads about salmon but also all the educational articles, recipes, cookbooks, blog posts, and product reviews related to cooking salmon? Well, get ready because it's going to happen very soon!

We've found an outstanding technology & community platform partner called Huddler. In the very near future, ChefTalk.com will be moving to the Huddler Platform in an effort to give everyone a better community experience. Our experience with the team at Huddler has been excellent and they have been listening to our needs as a community. As we move to this new platform if there is something that we are having trouble with, they will work with us to improve it. We have collaborated on tutorials for all of ChefTalk’s functionality and will be working together constantly to improve and grow. We encourage everyone to post their comments/suggestions in a special bug/feature forum we will have running on the new platform. We really want to hear your feedback, and the more detail you can provide, the better. Feedback will help us improve the site and better meet the ChefTalk community's needs – don’t hesitate to toss in a compliment or two either!


What New Additions Will ChefTalk.com Offer?
  • New Design: See the slick, new design in the screen shots below – I am excited about the updated logo and am really a fan of the utensils in the header.
  • Integrated Wiki/Articles: Members will be able to write & add their own articles. We'll still have the same, great ChefTalk content, but you will also be able to share your own "How-Tos" and collaborate with other users in building out resources for other chefs
  • Centralized Cookbook & Kitchen Equipment Review Database: Good, bad, or indifferent – we all appreciate one another’s opinions on equipment, books, schools, etc. Write a great review and we’ll feature it on the home page of ChefTalk
  • Updated Careers Center: A cleaner and more detailed job center for those seeking professional jobs
  • Blog Integration: Do you have your own WordPress blog? Email us and you could become a featured blog on ChefTalk.com so your posts will turn up in relevant places on ChefTalk and we can share some traffic.
  • Improved Photo Gallery

What is the new ChefTalk going to look like?

HomePage



Forums




A Few Trade-Offs:

Change is never easy and this is a big one for us. But, we don't think the change too drastic where you won't enjoy yourself on ChefTalk. Here are some changes that could fall under the category of "trade-off" for you :
1. No bb-code editor; it will be WYSIWYG only (What You See is What You Get – like editing a MS Word Document.)

2. No sort threads ability in thread view to help reduce clutter and number of links.
3. No post icons to help reduce clutter.
4. Limited photo gallery functionality (to start).

*Quick note about the new photo gallery: we will launch the new photo gallery and import all of your photos, but there is a lot of room for improvement. We know this, Huddler knows this and you will see some rapid improvements in the coming months, so don't get too frustrated. The new photo gallery has a way cooler upload feature that doesn't not require a power user to operate. Also, if your upload fails,you won't get a random blank screen or php error. Best of all, the new photo gallery is tag-based so it will be extremely easy to locate photos you are looking for. The new gallery will not have our photo comments, but this is only for a short while. Later, once the functionality is ready, our existing comments will be put in place. Thanks for your patience.

Things may work differently than you are used to, or may be in places different than you are used to, but we believe you will find it to be a lot of fun to discover and play around with some of the new features and functionality with the new platform. We're venturing out on a roadmap that will eventually take us well beyond the offerings of most other cooking sites' "forums" and we have a development team to get us there. Our goal is not to replicate the current experience, but rather improve it where possible. It will be an iterative process.

When will this happen?
Huddler is already working on our conversion and we are hoping to move to the new platform early next week (assuming all goes well). I know this is soon, but we are eager to get on the new platform and also excited to be Huddler's first cooking site. ChefTalk: always leading the way for the other cooking sites. :-)


Next Steps:
Please provide your questions/feedback in this thread.

Thanks so much!
Thanks,

Nicko 
ChefTalk.com Founder
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
Bacon (I made)
(26 photos)
Reply
Thanks,

Nicko 
ChefTalk.com Founder
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
Bacon (I made)
(26 photos)
Reply
post #2 of 9
Looks good, may I suggest a classified section for perhaps knives tools etc?
Something along the lines of you need 50 or more posts to buy/sell The purpose of the classifieds forum is for chefs to sell a few items. It is not intended for the sale of items for profit. Businesses, formal or not, may not post in this forum.
Fluctuat nec mergitur
Reply
Fluctuat nec mergitur
Reply
post #3 of 9
Let me chime in. I hate change. Haven't liked the last one we made, which was pretty close to what we had had before. And, techologically speaking, I am semi-literate at best. But....there's always a but, right.

I've been helping with the beta testing of the new platform, and it's an absolute winner! Sure, there will be things done a little differently; and we'll all have to adjust to the new system. The learning curve shouldn't take much time, though.

What we wind up with is a very proactive site where all functionalities are now in a cohesive whole, and in-which every member of our community can take an active role.

Hey, Nicko, you like that: "proactive" and "functionalities." I'm learning the language, I am.

The point I'm trying to make is twofold. One, moving to Huddler means more than superficial changes, it means a significant improvement in how we are organized and how community member interrelate. And, two, if I can figure it out, anybody can.
They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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post #4 of 9
There are good improvements.

The search improves on multiword searches.

There are more social aspects of to the user profiles for messaging and facebook-like interactions.

The biggest impact to my use of the test site was the spell checker default changes. Now I have to access the pop-up list of corrected word choices with a Control right click of the mouse. So not a biggie really.
post #5 of 9
I like it! I'm all thumbs at times with the computer so I'm sure it will take me some getting used to but... it looks awesome and I'm looking forward to the launch!
OK ... where am I going?.. and WHY am I in this handbasket??
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OK ... where am I going?.. and WHY am I in this handbasket??
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post #6 of 9

Site looks great!

Nico.

Great call! Site template looks great, easy to disseminate information and navigate around. I am sure all your readers, as am I are looking forward to your migration to to the new site and platform. Best of luck with it all n c ya soon...

cheers,

chefRob
"A meal without wine is like a day without sunshine"
Jean-Anthelme Brillat-Savarin, The Physiology of Taste (1825)
Food blog of chef Robert Conaway
Reply
"A meal without wine is like a day without sunshine"
Jean-Anthelme Brillat-Savarin, The Physiology of Taste (1825)
Food blog of chef Robert Conaway
Reply
post #7 of 9

So real, I tried to click the links...

:suprise:

I like it, Nicko! It's a good move forward and I'll wait to see what Huddler comes up with when you release it before I make any critique, however, it's definitely going in the right direction! :bounce:
post #8 of 9
Hi Nicko
I'm all for the changes and I'm grateful that you started this site. Happy 10 yrs. Keep up with the good work.:chef:
post #9 of 9
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the great feedback everyone. I think this is going to be a great move for all of us and I can't wait to see some of the product reviews and wiki articles that come in from the community!
Thanks,

Nicko 
ChefTalk.com Founder
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
Bacon (I made)
(26 photos)
Reply
Thanks,

Nicko 
ChefTalk.com Founder
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
Bacon (I made)
(26 photos)
Reply
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