Profile Cover Photo and the Future of Elgg!

Cover photos in user profiles is a design feature in place on many major social networking sites, including Facebook, Twitter, and G+. Users enjoy having the ability to further personalize their profiles beyond the default square avatar. Twitter was one of the last to add this feature to timelines in 2012, and when it did, everyone excitedly rushed to personalize their header images.
I had expected Elgg 2.0.0 to come along with this feauture atleast as a bundled plugin. Though there are commercially available cover photo plugins for elgg, but this seem to be a major feature for social networks and its possibilities shouldn't be left out for private developers to exploit! Elgg is open source framework and has been rated one of the best there is once but it seems most elgg developers have lost the spirit of open source and for Elgg core developers to have over looked this important feature to make elgg fully open source, it would seem to have reduced the number of elgg users in the recent years.
New developers who had try to pick interest in developing elgg sometime find it difficult when they can't find an easy way around to develop the profile page which hasn't really gotten much changes since the inception of elgg so I think. Adding a Profile Cover photo to the elgg's bundled plugin would really secure elgg's future for both the young developer and the professionals looking for a modern day social framework to develop upon. Or what do you think guys????

  • I am working on a set of changes that will hopefully make it into core before 3.x that will make working with images easier. This does not however mean cover images will be available out of the box. I disagree that covers are an important feature, neither are icons - they make things prettier and distinguishable, but they add no tangible value for all the work that will go into maintaining them in core.

  • You are wright. Was planning to update the elgg cover photo to the latest elgg version and with features matching what Facebook, Twitter, google and other major social network are offering but got busy with family, school, and work. Today I will look into it when I get home. There is a very nice theme that will go with it too as a new year gift!

    Reply sent via a smartphone.

  • I think you issued some good points, not only cover photo but also other user-oriented features should be included in a modern social networking engine. But, I also think this shouldn't be core team's major concern. What about creating a second "certified" team of devs taking care of all major fine-tuning details?

    Just an idea from a non dev so...very easy to throw on the table  I know guys but ideas good and bad are the only things I can try to help with :)

    PS: to be clearer I think core team should think about the engine of the car, a second team should focus on the body and websites owners drive their cars giving data while driving, preferably automatically but also at the end of the competition :)

  • @Ismayil......... I agree with you on the aspect of the amount of work that could go into maintaining features like that in core but what is social about a network that doesn't make things prettier and distinguishable?. I still think there can be ways to keep it simple and easy to maintain and still add that much value to elgg. So many open source social networking framework appear on the internet almost everyday and they seem to be providing this feature which is creating a competitive ground for elgg websites especially those built specifically for social networking!

  • I was working on my own version of cover photo but I stopped halfway with just showing a dynamic placeholder that shows each profile's username with http://placehold.it. I will be working on it in the future, draggable and savable.

  • Everything is subjective and relative. There is no common ground here. I have worked on a few dozens of Elgg sites and each is different. So far only one needed cover photos. It's about the focus of your site and the design choices you make. Elgg is cluttered as is, and adding a large image that takes half a page might not be the best use of space. I am not saying cover images are not needed, I am saying Elgg should provide API to make it easier to accomplish, but not go into details.

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Feedback and Planning

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