Friday, July 22, 2016

Manifesting The Roundtable | An update on's future

I didn’t realise it would be so enjoyable to work on; I have been spending most of my days lately setting up transients new Forum system which I aim to use to replace the Facebook group — that has over 3,000 people in it now — but it will also have a much greater purpose and usefulness because of how feature rich and responsive it is, and can be further after additional public created add-ons are installed. There will be some features that members may call out for over time which I can implement in one way or another.
I am using the forum software xenForo, which was not free, as I have spent about US $250 on the Forum so far, including some paid add-ons, so I have committed to it as it really does seem like the best system out there at the moment. It’s a very fast system with posting and navigation, plus the notifications can be in real time, meaning you don’t need to click on something to see an alert. 
I plan for it to be a repository of reliable information for the many subjects that fall into the theme of the transient site here, but also the community which is a combination of the site, the Facebook Page and Group. The boards will represent the main areas of interest. Moderators can be responsible for looking after those topics and will have control of their own boards, so can sticky information to the top of boards for easy access, as well as direct people onto the relevant info when new folk arrive. There is a add-on that allows cover photos for boards (and profiles) which can further enhance the experience of the topic the board may be about.
There will be a single sign on for those that comment on the front page, once the new site is up alongside this new forum — they won’t have to log in again to access the forum. The comments on articles on the front page will appear on a dedicated board, as each new article gets generated on the forum. While some sites prefer to separate the comment system from their community forum, I think in this case it’s important for us to try and bring everything together, instead of being spread out so disjointedly on social networks.

Above is a screen shot I just took of the current setup. I think I will have two ‘styles’ available, at least, for members to pick between when going 'live'. The styles determine the look of the forum and how it is visually presented, including colors, but the same physical structure and layout remains very similar when using different styles so there is no data loss. I know some people may enjoy a lighter and whiter experience, or they may not even resonate with brown. In the long term we can have a number of options. It’s pretty easy to switch between them once you are logged in.

Last night I decided to pick idioms for the categories of the board sections, as you can see. I am still working on writing up the board descriptions. I have only given out the link to a handful of people but I will be inviting more soon to test out things and provide advice and suggestions of what can be improved.

The Roundtable is a working title. It may change. It popped into my mind pretty quickly after working out what I should call it. I may get people to suggest a better one. I did have a reason to use this name though, as I will show with the bolded text below.
Wikipedia states, “The Round Table is King Arthur's famed table in the Arthurian legend, around which he and his Knights congregate. As its name suggests, it has no head, implying that everyone who sits there has equal status.”
Wikipedia also states this based on the term Round table discussion, “Round table is a form of academic discussion. Participants agree on a specific topic to discuss and debate. Each person is given equal right to participate, as illustrated by the idea of a circular layout referred to in the term round table.”
I will likely open up the forum to the public before going live, for those interested in checking it out and being part of its creation before it evolves into a more stable state, but until then I am inviting select people to join in as I go along with setting it up. However, if you are interested in joining in in its alpha state right now, just contact me or respond via the comments. This will be mainly community driven and I will be encouraging people to suggest others to join and check it out, when it is ready and 'live', so we can build up something really useful, but, it can also be a safe space to come together with those of like-mind — we are transient in nature, but life can be that little bit easier when you have the right people around you. 
Because of how user friendly and responsive this is, even on mobile devices, I can see this being used a great deal in the future, so it will be important to get it setup properly, and appropriately. Eventually I will be inviting some well-known people in the metaphysical community to become involved as moderators and look after specific boards which fit into their fields. I want to make sure that not just the knowledge is there on the topics the forum will cover, but also the experience and wisdom from people who know what they are doing from actually doing it and being gifted at it.

About the Author 
Editor of, Laron is a writer, healing facilitator, poet and spiritual teacher from New Zealand. A strong passion of his is to expand the consciousness of others through sharing information. Science tells us that we are all creating what we see as the observer — we are all creating our own truths within every moment. While being a bit of a bookworm, Laron also has a Diploma in Energetic Healing, is a Dolores Cannon trained QHHT Practitioner, Reiki Master, trained Crystal Healer and Tarot reader. You can find Laron on Facebook.

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