Welcome! We have a bunch of new features that will hopefully interest you as we begin our new year. I’ll go ahead and jump right into the list…

  • Advanced Search
    This is a feature that I’m sure many of you will appreciate. Next to the search box above the right sidebar you’ll notice a button that says “Advanced“. Clicking on that will bring up an advanced search screen where you can choose custom categories to search, or even have it scour the comments for text! The other key thing is that you can have it sort the results by relevance instead of just by date.
  • Updated CyberMarks
    CyberMarks There are a lot of changes to how CyberMarks are used. For those of you not familiar with CyberMarks it is our bookmarking system here at CyberNet. Underneath each article’s title you’ll notice a link that says “CyberMark,” and clicking on that link will store the article for you to retrieve later on (assuming that you’re a registered user who is logged in). The whole system utilizes AJAX so that bookmarking an article keeps you on the page you’re currently viewing.

    The first thing that we added is a sidebar module on the homepage that gives you access to your last 5 CyberMarked articles along with a quick link to get to the CyberMark Management screen. This makes it easy to store articles that you may not have time to read right now and come back to them later on.

    On the Management screen you’ll also notice a section that lists the number of articles that have been CyberMarked by all of the users and the top-5 most CyberMarked articles. Hopefully as the system begins to grow these statistics will closely reflect some of the most popular articles.

  • Tip System
    This feature has been requested for quite some time. We have been putting it off because there was a decent amount of backend work that we wanted to do on it. Most of you won’t really notice the work that has been put into this feature but believe me, it’s there. Now All-Stars are not solely based on the number of comments that they have left, because registered users can earn stars for tips that they send to us. Anyone who is already an All-Star cannot have that status taken away but they can continue to earn more and more stars.

    Here’s how it works. If you send us a tip and we end up writing about it we will give you some “stars” (as we like to call them). Depending on how unique the tip is you can receive anywhere from 1 star to 10 stars which will quickly help you become a CyberNet All-Star. Don’t worry, you’ll still receive one star for each comment. The Management screen will tell you how many stars you have from leaving comments and how many you have from sending us tips. That way you always know where you stand.

    For those of you that have already sent us tips you can still get credit for them if you send us an email with links to the articles that we give you credit for. We would go through and do this ourselves but it would take a long time to find out who is registered and who isn’t as well as assign each of those people stars. When thanking someone for a tip we typically use the name that shows up on the blog in comments, so you can probably just use our search feature to find the articles that we credited you on.

  • CyberNotes Sidebar
    We’ve made it even easier for you to keep up with our CyberNotes articles. There is now a sidebar module that lists the last 7 CyberNotes articles along with their corresponding days. Remember, you can always collapse the sidebar module should you decide that you don’t want to see it.
  • Updated Comment Tracking
    As more and more users comment on articles it becomes increasingly difficult to keep tabs on the new comments. We previously added a comment system that keeps track of the last time you viewed an article in order to calculate whether there has been any new comments. There is now one small feature that makes the system even better…a tilde (~) is added in front of any article that you have commented on:
    New Unread Comments
    Now you’ll easily be able to tell whether you should check the article for a response to one of your own comments!
  • New Spam Notification
    Our last feature deals with spam notification. Every now and then a good comment (even one posted by a register user) may get filtered as spam and won’t get removed until I go and do so manually(which is done about 2 to 3 times per day). In the last major update to the site we made it so that registered users would get notified if one of their comments was being held back by our spam filter…but now everyone will get to know. If your comment is filtered as spam you’ll see this notification located above your comment immediately after it is posted:

There we go, that’s everything that we have to introduce to you today! It is the start of a New Year and hopefully you’ll find these new features to be useful when gathering news. Most of these features, actually I think all of them, have been requested by both visitors and users of the site. So if you have anything else you would like to see implemented make sure you let us know because we want to make your experience the best it can be. Happy 2007!