First off let me say I think we can all agree that Vanilla 2 rocks. Why else would we be here, right? I have used SMF, PHPbb, BBpress and I can tell you Vanilla gets an A+ for being light and easy to set up. No other forum is as easy. Trust me.
Nevertheless, with being so light comes a downside. For people needing some additional functionality and with only basic php skills to tinker, there is a lack of plugins for Vanilla 2. Some of the great Vanilla 1 plugins have just not made there way over--which is a shame.
In my view, with only a couple of plugins, I think there could be even more adoption of the new platform. Plugins don't have to be a bad word. The benefit of Vanilla is its a buffet, you choose what you want.
With that being the case, below is my plugin wish list (but I am sure many people have many of the same).
-A maintenance plugin to allow you to close the forum to perform, well maintenance( I have created a plugin. It's very crude, but I tried--and it works for what I need)
-An easy automatic upgrade plugin --a la Wordpress (should be easy with php fopen, fwrite and fileexists)
-A way to have points/levels/badges for users --some way to allow for promotions or redeem points.
-A karma or thank you system
- 2 words in the tag plugin
- Admin stats about a user (ie user ranks)-- most active
-Poll for a thread or allow the Vote plugin to be more customizable. Sometimes you just need a poll in a thread
-Some kind of formatting toolbar, like Markitup. Allow admin to select which items appear on the toolbar--ie code clean up is not needed for most. I suscpect link, unlink and image will work for most. Some I know want an WYSIWYG editor and I know its being worked on--but its not been easy to get it integrated.
-Sitemap plugin ( i know there is one, but its broken--for now)
-A mobile plugin/theme for iphone
I have started to work on some of these plugins myself, so I am not a beggar asking without trying or giving. Nevertheless, I'm far from a master programmer, so I'd love some help in making these come true before Xmas. It would be a nice gift for us all I think:) The way see it, it's the best way to give back to the Vanilla 2 community for such a great free product..
Maybe even the team behind Vanilla would be willing to help make this happen quicker with some financial considerations--
I thought it might make sense to create a marketplace of sorts, using something likehttp://www.chipin.com/
, so the Vanilla team can set the price for these plugins. I am sure many of us would be willing to contribute to have quality plugins we know will be supported. Furthermore, the Vanilla team can get a real idea of the popular plugins because the community will vote with their wallets.
So what do you think? Would this work? What is your wishlist? Would you consider the use of something like http://www.chipin.com/
good idea? Or maybe its too late and I need to sleep....