The release of NorrCompetition 1.8.0

The release of NorrCompetition 1.8.0

Today we are glad to announce a major release of NorrCompetition 1.8.0 - the top extension to make voting contests on Joomla. This release includes new and cool features, various improvements and fixes of issues that were found from the previous version.

New features

Browser Fingerprinting

Browser fingerprinting is an incredibly accurate method of identifying unique browsers. Fingerprints can be used to fully or partially identify individual users or devices even when cookies are turned off.

The component will use fingerprint instead of a simple user-agent string because it allows making voting more fair and protects from repeated vote attempts. Moreover, it helps to identify simple robots that are trying to vote instead of a human.

Vote Analytics

Browser fingerprinting opens an opportunity to collect the additional details about the voter (like user-agent, platform, screen resolution, language, timezone, etc.). Vote details can be saved (if enabled in settings) for further unfair voting analytics or to build some nice charts for contests (coming in the next versions of the component).

Additionally, you can collect country and city and also save it as vote details. Please see the docs for onVoteBeforeSaveDetails event.

Vote Validation

Vote validation allows you manually or using the plugins to set the validity status of the vote. This status is displayed in the list of votes in the administrator area.

By default, the vote considered as valid. There are two main cases when you want to mark vote as invalid:

  • Check the vote for unfair voting using the analytics provided and mark it as invalid. You can do it manually (in Votes section) or implement your analytics code in the plugin. Please see the docs for onVoteSetValid event.
  • Vote verification, when the vote is being registered, but set as invalid, awaiting some additional verification, like SMS or e-mail confirmation. This feature will be available in the next major versions of the component.

Please note that the component from version 1.8.0 will count only valid votes for entries.

Vote Score

Vote score is another great feature that will help you to fight against unfair voting. The idea behind it is to assign a score for a vote between 0 and 10, where 0 is completely unfair vote and 10 is completely trusted vote. By default, the component will assign 10 for a vote unless it finds any suspicious behavior (robot voting, missing fingerprint, etc.).

The great thing about the score is that you can apply own analytics on the vote and assign the score. Please see the docs for onVoteSetScore event.

Remote Storage Support

Do you want to store the media uploaded with entries one the remote storage? Now it is possible because we have implemented Flysystem support that allows us to connect the popular remote storages using the plugins. All you need is to install the plugin and set your remote storage account data in the plugin options. At the moment we have Amazon Web Services S3 Storage plugin and more will come.

Please see the docs for remote storage support.

To support new features in Participants and Grid modules please update them to the latest versions. Also, EasySocial and JomSocial applications should be updated.

New UIkit 3 theme

Uikit3 theme for NorrCompetition

Yes, it’s here. Our brand new theme that natively supports UIkit 3 framework based templates. The theme was built from scratch with the idea to make a cleaner codebase. All duplicate and small parts of the layout code were moved to layouts. This allows for easier customization and more accurate overriding.

We have updated our demo site and it is using our new UIkit 3 theme too. Just look how neat it is now!

Improvements

  • Added 'Use Global' to category settings
  • Added Invisible Captcha
  • Added 'Back to contests' button in the contest view
  • Added EXIF data for photo on entry page
  • New option 'disable watermark transparency'
  • Improved resized images generation quality for GD handler
  • Updated JS libraries to the latest versions
  • Removal of Google+ comments
  • Removal of Vine video provider

Bug fixes

  • Fields: label was shortened to 32 symbols
  • Localization issue in category settings
  • Meta author is not displayed in the category view
  • Incorrect Meta description for entry
  • Wrong front-end access to trashed and unpublished contests
  • AJAX calls to support Nginx server
  • An error if Captcha is not valid
  • 'Contest not found' error if categories list menu item is disabled or not created yet
  • Notice Undefined index: competition_changed
  • Missing minCropBoxWidth parameter in cropper
  • Missing preview image height parameter
  • Missing UL for pagination
  • Random ordering error for previous/next item query
  • Alt tag issue for category image
  • Instagram and Dailymotion thumbnail creation
  • Popover is not defined error

Theme Changes

There was a lot of changes in layouts so please check your overrides (if you have any) to be compatible with the latest release. Here is the list of changed files:

  • _categories.items.php
  • _comments.tabs.php
  • _participant.fields.php
  • _participant.photo.php
  • _vote_button.php
  • category.php
  • competition.php
  • competition_result.php
  • competitions.php
  • participant.php
  • user.apps.php

Also style-1.7.7.css file was renamed to style.css and style-1.7.7.min.css to style.min.css.

We recommend to use the latest versions of Joomla and NorrCompetition to keep your site up-to-date and always perform backup before any update. You should add your subscription key (Download ID) in the component dashboard after installing ver.1.8.0.

Privacy Policy was updated.

Note: for stable work of the component, please do not forget to add subscription key (Download ID) in component dashboard! Read more here.

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Dmitry Rekun

Dmitry Rekun

Being a fan of Open Source software, Dmitry is involved in professional web-development and programming who loves to create a clean code. He has a deep passion for Joomla and is an active contributor of the Joomla Project.