Sunday, 26 April 2009

Sprouting, transplanting and harvest / bloom estimates for your timeline!

This one is a pretty exciting update for us – we’ve been waiting aaaages to implement this, but we’ve had to wait for enough data goodness to be entered into the system to make this work properly.

You’ll now find that your growing timelines have been shifted to the left slightly to show more of your future dates. This is because we are now displaying calculated estimated dates for sprouting, transplanting and harvest / bloom for each of your plantings. This data is being calculated from every one of the milestones that are being logged in the system for the variety that you grow – so it’s real info from real gardeners, not estimated dates from the back of random seed packets. This data will start becoming more accurate the more observations we have in the system – so remember to log all of your observations so that the data keeps getting better for everyone (and remember to classify all of your plantings too!) For an example, check out MattMiddleton’s fab timeline.

Over on the wiki page we’ve also added more detail to the planting estimates too – you’ll be able to see min / max and average days for germination, transplant and harvest days too. You’ll find these new estimates under the “How long does it take to grow?” heading on the plant and variety wiki pages. Check out Tomato for an example

The estimates are really wrong for my plant, how can I fix them?

Because we know this system isn’t going to be perfect all the time, we’ve also created a way for you to override the data in the system with your own. You’ll find three new fields on your planting edit page that will let you tweak the days between sprouting, transplanting and harvest for just your own plantings (this data doesn’t save back to the wiki, it's completely yours to use).

My timeline says my dahlia is ready for harvest – huh?

We’ve added some logic to check what sort of plant you have and we show either a bloom icon if it is a flower, or a harvest icon if it is fruit / vegetable. If you’re seeing a harvest icon for your flowers, edit the wiki page for that plant and set the Category field to Flower.

Timeline estimates are currently a Supporter feature only – Supporters help us pay for hosting costs for the site, and allow us to create more spanky features like this one!

Handy dandy links:

  • If you need some help with the new estimate feature: Help!

Sunday, 19 April 2009

A-Z for your stash lists, Journal share link, new widget tab

Hey all – another week, another set of new features and goodies! So what’s new this week?

A-Z filters for your Stash Lists

Following on from last week’s A-Z on your plantings, for Supporters we’ve also now added A-Z filtering on your stash lists to make it easier to quickly find your stash items.

New look gardener profile page

We’ve also tidied up everyone’s home pages to make them a little clearer, and make functions like “add as a gardening buddy” a little easier to find. Check out Dee’s new look home page for an example!

Profile widget tab

Over in your profile settings page, you’ll find a new tab called Widgets – you’ll find a couple of widgets, blog badges and example email signature code – all personalised and ready to copy and paste.


We’ve also made the Invite-a-friend link a permanent fixture on your top header bar (in the top right of the page) If you haven’t used it yet, give it a whirl and send an invite or two! If they join up from your invite emails, you’ll get a message in your folia mail and they’ll get a little “invited by” link in their profile with your username. Woo!

New Journals Share link

On every journal, you’ll now find a silver little Share button that will let you quickly bookmark or share the journal on lots of different networks and sites. So, if you do read an great journal on your travels around the site, remember that you can now email, StumbleUpon, Twitter, Facebook, MySpace or Digg it (to name a couple).

Some handy dandy links:

  • If you need some help with the new A-Z stash lists or widget pages: Help!

Monday, 13 April 2009

Photobucket is here!

Yep, after quite a bit of struggling with the API, we’ve finally added Photobucket to our photo hosting options, alongside Picasa / Blogger & Flickr. Woo!

What’s Photobucket?

Photobucket is a site much like flickr and picasa that stores your photos. It’s also free – to get a free account you can sign up here.

How do I connect up my Photobucket account?

Take a mosey on over to your (hugely improved) photo account page and select “Photobucket” from the dropdown list. Copy and paste your entire Photobucket URL into the textbox and you’re away! We’ve got a new Photobucket Help page that will give you some pointers if you get stuck (it’s got some handy screenshots too)

When are you going to let me upload my photos directly to the site?

We’re still not in a position where we can offer direct photo uploading to the site as we still have to be frugal with our bandwidth. We are also of the belief that these sites host photos much better and with more features than we will ever be able to provide – and it means that your photos are not locked to our site, you can use them where ever you like. Flickr and Photobucket have great little photo upload programs that can be downloaded to your desktop, so if you aren’t a big user of photo sites you can just upload from your desktop and start journaling on folia.

Hmmm, it doesn’t seem to be working for me…

It’s definitely very very beta – we are definitely anticipating that there might be some teething problems with this option to begin with, just as we had with flickr and picasa. If you are having trouble connecting your Photobucket account, firstly take a look at the Photobucket Help page to see if we’ve covered your problem already, then ask us in one of the groups below:

  • If you need some help connecting up your account: Help!