Category Archives: Web Design

Alphabetizing Group Directories in Buddypress

Buddypress is awesome. It is really pretty amazing. But it is far from perfect. Some things are really difficult to modify unless they’ve been expressly designed to be changed. One of those things is the issue with the sorting of group directories.

I’ve built a site where members are given access to follow a group of professionals. I use Buddypress Follow, and it works pretty well. One problem, when the members come with the intent to sign up and follow a specific professional, the group members directory is not alphabetized. By default it is sorted by sign up date (I think?), which is pretty much the last sorting method you’d want to use if you are trying to look up a specific person by name. I’ve spent the past six or seven months off and on trying to find some nice way to rectify this without any luck. A lot of people seemed to be looking for a method, but nobody was finding it. So I figured this one out on my own.

Right now, I have a custom activity loop showing only activity done by the professional members of the site, and it is the default home page for all members. This page had to be set up to look up member ID numbers, which I look up directly in the MySQL database like so:

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BuddyPress avatar cropping function broken?

You might be getting two images, one smaller on the right, and a larger version on the left.  This is the typical layout for the crop interface in BP.  But you won’t be getting the crop selection tool.  In Chrome, right click on the page and click “Inspect Element”.  If you see an error icon in the bottom right corner, click on it to find out if you are dealing with Jcrop not loading.  If that isn’t it, go back to your search engine and type that error into your query to help you find the solution you really need.

If you are getting this error: “Uncaught TypeError: Object #<Object> has no method ‘Jcrop'” in a BuddyPress Multisite installation of WordPress, make sure you aren’t using ThickBox.  The ThickBox plugin is usually one of my first plugins for sites, and it works great in both basic WP installs, even with BP, but it doesn’t work on Multisite.  Something in there is leaving an open script, I believe.  If you find out a way to fix ThickBox, let me know in the comments – I bet it isn’t too hard.  A great alternative is FancyBox for WordPress.

Great Components of a 90’s Site

…That are horrible components of a modern site.

Among my favorites:
An introduction page. Nothing is better than putting something between an information hungry visitor and the information they are looking for.

A counter.  Most counters start at 1,000,000 views.  If you want your visitors to be really impressed, start your counter at 3,384,111.  The number is random enough that you might be able to trick the five people who still don’t know that a counter means absolutely nothing into thinking your site is AWESOME.