Current Site version: v1.3.4
The dev_blog is sort of a change log, but that's too rigid a definition. It's more a collection of notes about new features and major changes in some of the versions.
KerbalX Repost Check System (KRCS)
From time to time someone forgets one of the KerbalX rules:
thou shalt not repost other people’s craft. Most of the time the community reports reposts and they get sorted out, but sometimes they slip by unnoticed.
So craft on KerbalX will now have a digital signiture, based of various information in the craft file and if a craft is posted which matches another craft’s signiture, the person posting it will get a message reminding them of the no-repost rule and if they still post it then it will be flagged for review by a moderator.
It’s not a perfect system and there may be some false positives, so if you get a KRCS warning on a craft that you know is your own original creation, don’t worry and go ahead and post it, it will be reviewed by a human and sorted out.
- The autocomplete menu that appears when adding #tags to craft has been acting up (being really slow). This was due to an issue with the jQuery library and I was hoping they’d fix it, but I’ve found a work-around. Sorry it’s taken a while to sort this out!
- Fixed a bug that was causing craft with a particular partless mod to fail to upload
Want to suggest something?
The KSP forum is the best place for that:
Found a bug?
Let me know on github;
Craft that use the new DLC are now labeled as Stock+ or Mod+. KerbalX was treating the new DLC as if it was just another mod, but now it’s been given a special status. This means you can filter for craft that use the DLC, or choose to exclude DLC based craft.
If you’ve already uploaded craft with DLC parts they will be rescanned to get their correct Stock, Stock+, Mod or Mod+ status.
A few bug fixes that where preventing some of you from uploading missions should now be fixed. Let me know if you have any other mission related issues (either on the KSP forum or mail [email protected]).
Ready for the release of KSP’s first DLC, you can now share your missions on KerbalX! http://KerbalX.com/missions
Upload them just like craft files (drag and drop the zips KSP will export onto the same upload area) and they will be scanned for details.
As little is known about missions at present, only very basic info is collected, but more will come. They’ll be parsed for the planets that they require you to visit, and you can then search for missions based on destination. I want to know what you guys want out of a mission sharing feature, so come and suggest stuff on the KSP forum
If a mission contains craft they will get posted as separate craft (by default, but you can choose not to post the craft when you upload a mission, they’ll still be in the mission zip when someone downloads it).
Each mission has its own page, right now it’s pretty basic, but the mission pages will become just like the craft pages with a fully customizable layout, but that’s something for another release. Quite a few things still to add. Right now you can comment on missions, but I still need to add up/down votes, notifications about missions posted by people you follow and
pretty mission urls.
I want to say a big thanks to UomoCapra for providing information about the content of mission files and helping me get this feature ready!
Updates for KSP 1.4.0
A couple minor tweaks to make KSP 1.4.0 craft happy, and one minor feature:
KerbalX can upgrade your 1.3.x (or older) craft to use the new versions of legacy parts in KSP 1.4.0. This just includes the command pod and fuel tanks. Go to the edit page of your craft and click
Download with upgraded parts (near the bottom of the page). This won’t change the craft stored on KerbalX, but will download a version which has the names of those parts updated, you then need to load that craft into KSP 1.4.0 and save it (to ensure extra modules get added).
There is a bigger update comming soon (hopefully before the DLC is released!) which will enable you to share missions from the upcomming DLC.
Twitch videos and clips
You can now embed Twitch videos and clips on your craft pages. Use the add video helper and select twitch (or just paste a twitch url, it will automatically switch to twitch mode). Or you can add the markdown yourself like this
Minor change on Craft Edit Page
Hopefully you won’t even notice this change! The way the craft edit page refreshes the content on the page when you save has been changed. Previously when the page saved it refreshed all the elements on the page, and this caused video content to disappear for a second and then reappear. Now the page only refreshes the elements which have changed which should make editing craft pages with video content a smoother experience.
Tweaks and Bug fixes
- Improvement to speed when loading large Hangars, and actions like adding/removing craft.
- bug fix: Notifications about replies to comments were not showing the reply
- bug fix: Upvoting a craft on a Hangar page wasn’t showing that the vote had been registered
- Support for detecting partless mod DCK
Improvements to old features
This update doesn’t add any new features, but a few older features have been improved.
If you are logged in you can now go to /comments and view all the comments you’ve made, or all the comments which have been made on your craft. You can also search comments by their content.
Long chains of comments on craft pages now only show the first 3 replies to the top level comment but you can click to load the rest or click on
full page view to see that comment thread as a full page view. (The way this works is still a bit WIP so this bit of interface may change again).
The very old interface for enlarging a picture on a craft page when you clicked on it has been updated. More intuitive, prettier and more mobile friendly! Click on any picture to zoom in and then click again to exit zoom (in the previous version you had to click on the small space around the image to close it). Pressing the esc key will also close it. If there are multiple images you can click on the side arrows or use the arrow keys. On mobiles you can swipe left and right to switch images and tap again to close.
Swipe on craft
On mobiles you can now swipe left and right when viewing craft to load the next/prev craft. ie start on the front page, click on the first craft and then you can swipe left to view the next craft.
Fast search is faster
Two of the filters (science parts and 2 modes of the mod filter) on the main craft search previously used a rather clunky approach to filter the craft. But my SQL foo has improved so now all the filters, regardless of which ones are active, can be run as a single database select which makes it much faster. This also speeds up loading of craft on mod pages.
This update is a huge upgrade of the core framework, language and libraries which KerbalX is built on. This may not mean much to the casual observer, but it’s the web development equivilent of an engine upgrade. Very little has changed on the surface but the whole codebase has had a bit of a polish and some of the underlying processes have changed to fit with the upgraded framework. Functionality and use of the site should be mostly unchanged, but with an update of this size there are bound to be a few glitches, so if you spot any please let me know!
The site’s launguage has been upgraded to Ruby 2.4.1 and we’re now using Rails 4.2.9. Exciting huh! ok, well probably not, but it should improve the sites performance and stability. Upgrading these core components also required upgrading all the libraries that KerbalX uses, again probablly not exciting for you, but it should all mean a better overall performance.
So what has changed?
The main change that you may notice is in the process for uploading craft. When a very large craft is uploaded it can take a while to process it and that could slow the site down for everyone else. Now when you upload a craft which is over 2mb the upload process is handled by background workers which takes the strain of the main web server. For craft under 2mb the upload process is the same. But all craft now handle processing thier thumbnails and sending out notifications to followers via the background workers which should make things faster.
In the past when you changed a craft’s thumbnail it wasn’t always apparent that the change had happened. Now when you change a thumbnail is should flush the CDN cache for that craft’s images and you should see the updated thumbnail appear right away.
The process for reading the craft file should now deal with craft that use special characters in their names, so letters like ö should appear correcly in the craft’s name and will be replaced with non-accented (url safe) chars in the craft’s url (rather than just being removed).
There is a now an
update craft button on craft edit pages which you can use to update an existing craft. You could always update craft, but the interface to do it wasn’t very clear before.
And a lot of minor bug fixes and little tweaks to the interface.
A mostly behind the scenes updates
This is quite a big update in terms of code changes, but you might not even notice it!
I’ve been working on reducing the site memory usage and improving the speed of the search and page loading times for /users, /mods, /parts and /mod_packs. They’re not key pages but they’d started to get a little slow and this was causing a knock-on effect for the rest of the site. Those pages should be lightning fast now.
The /users page has also got some more sorting options. You can now sort users by their points and by their points divide by their craft count. There is a difference in the points values used when sorting by points and points/craft; when sorting by points it uses all the user’s points, for craft, comments and points earned by contributing to the knowledge base. When sorting by points/craft the value for points used is just the points earned for up/down votes on their craft.
Mod Packs have also got a search interface. You can filter, sort and search by both the names of mod packs and which mods they contain, ie: enter ‘KAS’ and you’ll find mod packs with ‘KAS’ in their name and also those which include that mod. You can also switch on/off which fields the search is looking in.
I’ve added a new caching system to the site, won’t bore you with details, it should just make stuff quicker!
- Slight change/fix to markdown parser for craft pages to enable you to nest an image inside a link, so you can make a clickable image which links to something. Also all links on craft pages that point to other sites will now open in a new tab. External links will also have a icon next to them (hovering the mouse over them will display which site they link to).
- Minor tweaks for the release of KSP 1.3
- Couple additions to the KerbalX font-pack
- Fixed issue when uploading craft that have certain special characters in the names or parts, modules or resources.
- Fixed couple minor spelling mistaks
- Added ability to dismiss large numbers of notifications (in settings->notifications) (option only appears if you have notifications).
- New logo for the link to your KSP forum profile on your profile page. Thanks to Fulgora for making the new logo.
Bulk Downloads on Hangars
You can now download all the craft in a hangar as a zip.
Note: If you are the first person to download a zip for a hangar since it was last updated then there will be a 10-20 second wait while the zip is created and uploaded to Amazon AWS for storage. All subsequent requests for that zip will happen almost instantly.
Minor Fixes and a Minor feature
- Updated ckan file reader to account for change in ckan’s installed-default file
Fixed a conflict in mod filters where a mod with a name that started with
sciwas triggering science part filters to be switched on
Added a sort by updated filter. Enables you to order craft by most recently updated.
Fixed issue that was preventing settings being changed on special hangars (downloads & favourites)
- Thumbnails can now be generated from youtube vids, so if you want your craft page to just have a youtube vid the craft thumbnail will be taken from the default thumbnail of the vid.
- fixed bug where having a gif as the first image on the page prevented thumbnails from being generated
- fixed bug where updating a craft caused the craft’s page content to be reset.
Customize your craft pages before posting
You can now customize your craft page before it is made visible to everyone else. Previously your craft was made public the instant you uploaded it, before you had the chance to customize the page. Now you can customize your craft’s page once it’s uploaded and then hit publish to make it public when you are ready. There is now a
publish craft button at the top (and the bottom) of the craft edit page.
When you publish a craft the upload date is set to the time you hit publish, so if you upload a craft and then wait several hours before making it public it will still appear at the top of the main craft page at the time you hit publish. You can only have one unpublished craft at a time. If you have an unpublished craft there will be a link to it in the main menu so you can go back to edit it. If you try to upload another craft you will be prompted to complete the unpublished craft first.
Uploads from the KX mod will still work as before and will be published as soon as the mod has uploaded the craft. Something to note; if you have an unpublished craft and then upload another craft with the mod, it will remove the unpublished craft without warning. (I will try to improve this).
If you’d prefer to go back to the way it used to work, you can switch on
instant publish in your settings. With instant publish switched on you won’t have the publish craft step and craft will be made public the instant you upload them (and users will see your craft before you’ve customised its page).
- Following some prolific users (you know the ones!) can result in loads of notifications, so now notifications about new uploads and updates from users you follow will be condensed to a single notification for each user that you follow.
- More links to the KerbalX mod download page and more help content explaining deferred downloads.
- couple bug fixes
Albums and other fixes
There’s been a problem with imgur albums so we now have a new style of album display that can work with imgur albums and enables you to create custom albums from any set of pictures (from anywhere, they don’t have to be on imgur) and you can set albums to autocscroll.
You can still link to imgur albums with imgur tags ie:
[imgur]FfEmY[/imgur] and if you wanted that album to autoscroll then add it like this;
You can also create custom albums with album tags and put links to to images inside the tags like this
There’s also a handy album helper to add the tags and set the autoscroll option for you. Just drag
album from the top of the craft edit page to where you want it and then either enter the url to an imgur album or choose custom album and add links to images.
Craft descriptions fix
There’s also been an issue with craft descriptions (particularly descriptions which contain an apostrophe), that should now be fixed.
First Release of the KerbalX Mod
There is now a mod for KerbalX that enables you to upload your craft from in the game! It also can enables you to download craft from any device and have them delivered to your game.
See the KerbalX Mod page for more info
KerbalX is out of beta
Today (Aug 31st 2016) marks two years since the launch of KerbalX and the end of its beta phase.
This update doesn’t add anything new but I’ve gone over a lot of the older code and made tweaks to make things more efficient. The most significant
tweak has been to rewrite around 70% of the logic for processing craft files. This should result in faster times for uploading craft.
There’s also been various tweaks to make pages load faster and lower the site’s memory usage, and some minor fixes. Also improved the stats graphs shown on the dashboard and on craft stats pages. On the dashboard it now defaults to just the last month of activity but you can still switch to see all activity.
Detailed Part Data - patch
After the last update a number of craft were showing incorrect values for their mass and cost. This was because craft with scalled parts were not taking part scalling into account and some parts using scientific notation were being ignored. This should fix that and result in better values for mass and cost on modded craft.
I know there are still some craft with incorrect values for mass and cost. If one of your craft is showing wildly incorrect values for those let me know on the KerbalX thread on forum as that will help me narrow down why some craft are being incorrectly calculated.
Detailed Part Data
This update adds a big change to the knowledge base. KerbalX now gathers more detailed information about individual parts, including their mass, cost, crew capacity and required tech levels. So now your craft will display their total mass, cost and crew capacities.
The filters for part count, crew capacity, mass and cost let you set upper and lower values with a slider or you can click the icon to enter specific values manually. Note: the sliders are exponential so there is a greater range of precision at the lower end.
You can also toggle each one with the power icon
This works best with the stock tech tree; it can also display tech nodes from mods, but those are just shown as a list.
It isn’t possible to get detailed part data for all mods, so not all craft will have 100% accurate info about their mass, cost and crew capacity. If the craft is pure stock or if it’s mods are listed on CKAN then it will have complete data. A new version of the PartMapper will be available soon which will also help improve the amount of data for parts.
The extra data about parts also includes ISP data for engines and it is my goal to add in automatic calculation of dV and TWR for craft. But that will happen in a future update.
This is a large update so there could be teething issues! Do let me know if you find any problems!
Other stuff and things
A few little fixes and improvements. The most notable is an improvement to the craft scanning library which has reduced the time it takes to upload and scan craft.
A couple bug fixes, some performance improvements, a new loading animation and a small addition to ModPacks.
On craft pages (for mod craft) there are now links to add the craft’s mods to one of your existing mod packs, or create a new mod pack containing the craft’s mods. On Mod pages there is also a link to add that mod into an existing mod pack.
The new loading animation is a rough recreation of the Kerbol system (just showing Moho to Duna) and is roughly to scale. Planet sizes their orbital periods are to scale, but distances and other orbit characteristics are not to scale (orbits are all perfectly circular and not quite at the right distance from the sun. Kerbol itself is also not to scale). The loading animation just shows Moho to Duna but you can see it with all the planets (no moons) here.
This is a big update to the layout of KerbalX. My aim has been to keep the same look and feel, while gaining a responsive display. The site will now make better use of available screen space, both for larger displays and small.
If you have your browser less than ~1100px wide the launch clamps at the side will disappear and the page will use the full width. You can also choose to use the full width mode on larger displays, with the >> toggle switch in the top right of the page:
The number of craft shown per row will adjust according to your browser width and if you’re using full page mode. This will either be 3 or 4 craft per row on regular sized displays, on very wide displays it will show 6 per row and on mobiles it changes to a single column of wide images.
You can also override the auto adjusting of craft per row if you’d rather have a set number. Click the cog icon on the right above the craft list to open a menu where you can set how many per row. Drag the slider to change how many per row and then click
set. Or click
autoto go back to letting it auto adjust. (you can also set to display wide images, but that option isn’t remembered after a page reload, yet)
The craft pages themselves where more of a challenge to make responsive. The customizable layout of those pages is very dependent on being 960px wide, so craft pages don’t scale up and down. On medium width displays the content is centered on the page and on wide displays the content is moved to the right and the comments and additional craft info from the bottom of the page is brought up into a right hand side column. Only on mobiles is the custom layout altered and each element of the page is shown one above the other and scaled to fit the device.
I suggest when creating your craft pages to see how it looks on different sizes. When in wide mode the content is placed hard against the edge of the screen which looks great for images but is not so good for text, so to counter that text containers will now have their padding option switched on (you can turn this on/off from the menu on containers on the page).
On the main craft list page the search interface will gradually shift over to the left on narrower displays and once the display is less than 675px wide it reduces to a minimal search. The search filters get replaced with a
filters button which will display the search filters as an overlay (this is intended for use on mobiles). Currently the sort options don’t appear in that mode, still working on that.
The user menu now has context relevant links displayed in it (the same context relevant links that appear in the header bar, but those may get hidden if the screen gets to small for them to fit).
I may have slightly broken the next/previous links that are shown on craft pages; they don’t get displayed in all situations and sometimes can cause an error - working on that still. On narrow displays or when using full page mode the next previous links are shown near the bottom of the page.
You may find some pages that have not been made responsive yet (for example the site statistics page), but they won’t be key parts of the site.
The search system has also has further tweaks, things should be faster!
This is a big update that’s completely overhauled the interface layout, so you may find things which don’t work as expected. I’ve tried to make it so that if you prefered it how it was then you can still have it, while also enabling a responsive layout. Please let me know on the forum if you find any issues!
Couple new Sort options and by Date Filter
You can now limit the craft shown to just today’s craft, craft from this week, or just from this month.
This makes the other sort options more useful. For example sort by downloads and limit to this week and you get the most downloaded craft for this week (before it would alwasy show you the top downloaded craft of all time, which doesn’t change that much). This should make it easier to find interesting craft.
You can now also sort by
popularity. Popularity is based of a craft’s total views, downloads and points. I may change how those three factors are weighted, but this is a start.
Several minor bug fixes and a big improvment to the loading time for hangars which have lots of craft.
User and Hangar Following
This update lets you follow other users and get notifications when they upload new craft, or when they update an existing craft. You can also follow hangars and get a notification when a craft is added to the hangar. You also will get notified when someone follows you or one of your hangars. You can adjust which notifications you get in the notifications section of settings.
You can see all the users and hangars you are following if you go to /subscriptions (when logged in), there is a link to that page on the top left of your profile page options and you can also see who is following you at the bottom of your profile page.
Craft without Pictures are now hidden by default
I hope this change isn’t too controversial! By default craft that don’t have any pictures added to them will not appear on the front page. You can choose to see them if you check the checkbox under the main search text field and that option will be remembered (if you are logged in). You can also change it in interface settings.
If you upload a craft and don’t put a picture, the site will send you a reminder notification when you return to the main page. You can disbale that notification in the notifications section of settings. Craft without pictures can still be shared as normal, if you post the url to it then anyone clicking that url will see the craft page just as before.
The hangars index was being rather browser intensive with the way it scrolled through images. I’ve changed it to only scroll the images of a hangar that you mouse over. I am planning to completely revamp the hangars index page and add a search and a nicer interface for scrolling through hangars, but that’s for another time!
You can now also add multiple craft to a hangar at one go. If you view your hangars, (site menu > My Stuff > My Hangars or goto /<your username/hangars) and click the
add craft to this hangar link you can now select several craft to add at once.
Some of you may have noticed some rather high download activity on your craft, it seems some bots have taken an interest in KSP craft!
To stop this from happening I’ve made a change to how craft are downloaded; craft and ckan file downloads now have to originate from KerbalX.
This should stop bots from crawling the site for craft file.
You will now get notifications if someone adds one of your craft to a public hangar and when someone ‘favourites’ your craft. If you have any
open hangars you will get notified when someone adds a craft to your hangar.
You can turn these notifications off in the notifications section of settings
Thumbnail Image hosting
The last couple of weeks have been the most fraught for me since KerbalX’s first release. After imgur blocked access to KerablX I’ve had a mad scramble to get things fixed. I want to thank everyone for sticking with the site while things have been patchy. With the changes I’ve made Imgur have now said that they will lift the block, but this may take a couple days to take effect.
KerbalX now has it’s own image hosting capabilities, but for now I’m just keeping this to hosting the craft thumbnail pics (which was the reason for imgur blocking us). I do really want to enable you to upload your images directly to KerbalX, but I need to see how the cost of the thumbnail hosting works out over the next couple months before jumping into that.
I could do with some help with the running costs of the site and I’ve setup a Patreon page to ask for your support. KerbalX on Patreon If you could add your support it would realy help me and would enable getting full image hosting up and running sooner.
Getting KerbalX’s image hosting setup has meant adding a lot of behind the scenes stuff (a lot of which was new to me, so I’ve been on a KSP-level learning curve!). The main thing is having a CDN (content delivery network) which both reduces load on the site and also brings a massive boost to the loading times of pages (especially the front page and any with lots of craft thumbnail images). It also adds another layer of security to the site with further threat detection and on top of that KerbalX is now using SSL.
This release has been rolling out gradually over the last week as I’ve had to monitor and tweak it once it was out, which is why I’ve waited till v 0.15.6 before posting this release note.
Several other minor updates including some improvment to the auto-page layout process. This should stop description text being placed so it overlaps albums albums/images when you first create a craft page (or load one of the templates).
Check out the new Site Stats Page!
stats page has been updated and is now the
The same info is available, but the dashboard also shows a graph of views and downloads for all of your craft over time, and recent activity and comments on your craft.
Each craft also has it’s own stats page that shows the graph of views and downloads just for it, along with some other info. Add
/stats to one of your crafts’ urls or click on
stats links on the dashboard.
3D Craft Printing
Mostly behind the scene changes with this update, extending the API and working with linuxgurugamer in developing a mod that can publish and update craft to KerbalX from in game.
3D Printing of craft is now available. KerbalX and eucl3d have teamed up to enable 3D printing of craft on KerbalX. more about 3D printing
Edit Interface Update
The interface that you use to customize your craft’s page was one of the oldest parts of the site and was rather tricky to use. That interface has been re-written and there is now a much more intuative interface that also gives you better control over where you place things. Instead of clicking arrow links to move and resize things you now drag and drop to move and grab and drag edges to resize. It’s also easier to add new things to the page and you can more easily set the font-color (and now also the background color) of elements on the page.
By default the original interface is still the default on new and existing craft. If you want to try out the new interface, go to one of your craft, click
Edit Craft in the header and then at the bottom of the edit page there will be a link to update that craft to use the new interface.
The update introduces some code to enable you to send craft on KerbalX to eucl3d.com and have it 3D printed. This feature is not fully ready, but it will be available soon.
KerbalX has been moved to a more powerful database service (and and updated version of the database). Should sort out some of the problems with site speed that we’ve been having in recent weeks.
Search By CKAN
If you use CKAN you can now very easily tell KerbalX what mods you have installed by dropping the
installed-default.ckan file that CKAN generates onto the mod search interface. KerbalX will read the file and identify your installed mods and then search for craft that use those mods.
You’ll find the
installed-default.ckan file in the CKAN folder inside your KSP install. You can this use this feature with any .ckan metapackage file.
When you drop a .ckan file onto the search interface the mod filter will automatically switch to the mode that finds craft which are commpatible with the selected mods. Another small new features is that when the interface automatically changes anything it will be highlighted by the activated button flashing blue for a second.
These are still a work in progress, but they enable you to save a set of mods as a custom mod pack. You can then recall those mods to run searches for craft and you’ll be able to share a link to your mod packs. The idea being that on the forums you can say
I use these mods and post a link to your mod pack, people who click the link will see a list of mods and will be able to download the .ckan metapackage for it so CKAN can automatically install those mods for them. These still require work to be done, but their basic functionality is working.
minor fix in detecting craft that use TweakScale
- Craft with the updated FAR are now correcly detected
- Atmospheric Sensor is now included in
stock science parts(and the Nosecone has been taken out) If you want to search for a craft that has the old nosecone you can type
+part:avionicsNoseConeinto the search field (you can use
+part:<part_name>to search for craft with any given partname)
Login improvments and fixes
- case insensitive login - The case of your username is now ignored when logging in. You can also log in using the email address you registered with.
- More customizable Profile page; you can now add a profile pic, description and links to your channels (youtube, twitch, forum-profile). You can also create a signature that will appear at the bottom of all your craft’s pages.
- KSP-forum signatures - you can now get various KerbalX logos to put in your KSP-forum signature (go to your profile page or edit page for a craft and click
Get KSP-Forum Signature.
- Mod pages now have nammed urls, so instead of
/mods/9you can put
mods/KWRocketry(the existing id based urls still work too). The name is the mods ckan_identifier so may not be the same as the mods full name, ie
B9 Aerospace Packhas the ckan_identifier
b9so it’s url is
- Bug fix - Fixed bug in pagination of craft lists
Imgur Album Support
You can now display imgur albums with your craft. You can add albums to existing craft pages using
[imgur] tags just like we do on the KSP forums i.e:
[imgur]srhRE[/imgur]. When uploading a new craft you just need to put the 5 char album id into the add picture section and it will add the required tags for you when the page is created.
As always the first image on a craft’s page will be used as the craft’s thumbnail when it appears in lists. If you put an imgur album as the first
image it will use the albums cover image as the thumbnail.
I decided to go with the old style of imgur album (larger, with thumbnails and as black as the space the Kraken lives in), personally I prefer it. If you want the other style let me know and I’ll see if I can make it an option.
You can also add sketchfab 3D renderings of your craft using a
Sketchfab renders are not treated as images so you do also need to put a regular picture or imgur-album for the craft to have a thumbnail.
Knowledge Base Overhaul - CKAN compatibility
This update brings a major overhaul to the knowledge base and a change to how KerbalX can discover info about mods.
KerbalX can now read data from the CKAN repo of mods so KerbalX will now know about all the mods that are available via CKAN. This has a couple of advantages over the crowd-sourced PartMapper approach.
- The information about the mods is more detailed and KX can now distinguish between certain mods that are installed into the same folder (for example B9 and B9 procedural parts).
- Better info about where mods can be downloaded from.
- CKAN meta-package files can now be downloaded for each craft. You can then give a .ckan file to the CKAN mod manager and have it automatically install the required mods for a craft you’ve downloaded.
The PartMapper approach is still available so KX is still able to discover mods that are not available via CKAN. Before this process was essential for KX to function and while it has worked well (and a big thanks to everyone who ran the tool and updated the knowledge base) it is no longer the sole way for KX to discover mods. If you find you’ve uploaded a craft and KX doesn’t know all the parts in it, then you can still run the PartMapper to update the knowledge base, but now this shouldn’t be needed as often.
This is a big update that changes a lot of behind the scenes functionality, so there could be some hiccups! Let me know on the KSP forum if you spot something that is not working.
In this update I’ve done a lot of subtle improvements and fixes to the interface. If I’ve done things right then you shouldn’t really notice them! Small things like sorting spacing out between craft in the main page, fixing odd border sizes and other things like that.
Some of the more noticeable changes;
The site (finally) has a logo! I’ve decided that it will only be shown in the header when you’re logged out. When you’re logged-in the header is smaller for better use of screen space.
Add images helper
I’ve noticed some users have issues with adding images; the most common mistake being to put an url that points to a web page that contains the image, rather than the image itself. To help with this image urls are now checked as you enter them. Correct urls will display thumbnails under the text-field and anything that doesn’t return an image will be shown as an error. It also attempts to correct Imgur urls, for example if you entered
http://imgur.com/JwwxjHt it will correct it to
http://i.imgur.com/JwwxjHt.jpg. This applies to the form that appears after you upload a craft and when you use the
Insert Image or Vid link when editing a craft’s page. If you are directly modifying the markdown text then the assumption is you know what you’re doing so the checks aren’t applied then.
Craft Download Interface
Before this clicking download on a craft would just download the craft file. That sill happens as before but it will also open the download tab in the craft page header. This makes that part of the header behave in the same way as the other links and it provides you with more options once you’ve downloaded a craft. Part of the aim of this is to prompt folk to upvote craft more and also to provide links that will run searches for you to find craft that use similar mods, similar part count etc. It also provides a place to have the link to download a CKAN meta-file which is something that will be available in the next update.
Another significant change to the craft download interface is that is now knows what craft you have already downloaded and this will change the behaviour of clicking the download link. If you’ve not downloaded the craft before then clicking the link will download the craft and open the download tab. However if you have already downloaded the craft then clicking download will NOT download the craft, it will just open the download tab. This allows you to re-open the download tab to see the extra info in it, without re-downloading the craft each time. Of course you may want to download the craft again, in which case there is a link in the download tab to do that. You will notice a little slider next to the download link and by default is will be green, but when you first download the craft it will switch to red. This indicates to you that you have downloaded that craft and it is this slider that control the behaviour of clicking the download link. If you manually switch it to red (off) then clicking download will just open the download tab without downloading the craft.
What’s happening next?
Quite a bit of work in this update has been to prepare the site for the next update. The next update will bring about a big change in how the knowledge base works and KerbalX will be getting mod info directly from CKAN as well as it’s current crowd sourced approach to mod discovery. The big advantage to this is it will allow much better resolution on mods, for example the current system can’t distinguish between B9 and B9 procedural parts, but the next update will solve that. It will also enable you to download a CKAN meta-file for modded craft. You can then give this file to CKAN and it will then fetch the mods you need for that craft to work.
Hangars allow you to create custom groups of craft. By default you get two hangars; your favourites and downloads hangars. Craft that you download are automatically added to your downloads hangar. You can add craft to you favourites hangar by clicking the star icon in the header bar at the top of a craft’s page.
Get to your hangars from the user menu in the top right, open the
My Stuff sub menu and click on
You can also create other hangars and put whatever craft you like into them. i.e. if you have a craft with a collection of subassembly modules that work with it, you can put them all into one hangar, or maybe have a hangar that holds your pick of the
best VTOLS others have uploaded.
Hangars can be public or private (by default your favourites and downloads hangars are private, but you can change that). You can see a users’ public hangars, if they have any, by going to KerbalX.com/[username]/hangars and you can see all public hangars at KerbalX.com/hangars
You can also set a hangar to be
open. An open hangar allows other users to put their craft into your hangar (they can also remove their craft from that hangar). The owner of an open hangar can add and remove any craft from it, other users can only add/remove their own craft. This could be useful if you want others to submit craft to you, i.e. for a challenge or for a youtube tutorial ‘assignment’.
KX can now determine what parts are science parts by the modules and events they contain in the craft file, so craft now list which stock and mod science parts they have. Click
Details on a crafts page and at the bottom left it will show you what science parts it has. It displays them in a short-hand form to save space, click to see full names and a count of each one. I want to replace the letters with icons, any of you guys good at making icons?
New Search Filters
You can now turn some filters on and off using the new
more filters menu and there are two new filters
Click science filters and you can then select any combination of the 7 stock science parts using toggle buttons, if you select several together it will find craft that have all the selected parts. Or click on
any to find craft with any stock or mod science part. You can also search for specific mod science parts using the text interface (the what?); in the text field type
+sci: followed by a science part name ie
The other new filter is a part count range filter that lets you set an upper and lower limit for part count using a slider. You can also toggle the previously existing
versions filter from the more filters menu.
Couple things to note:
- When you turn a filter off it has the same effect as unselecting the options from that filter.
- When you turn the part count filter on it won’t take effect until you click on it. Unlike the other filters you can’t click on it to toggle it off, you have to hide it using the more filters menu if you want to disable it.
The example searches have been updated to include some examples using the new filters. That dialog now appears on the left and a couple other minor things have been moved around to make better use of space.
I had intended to add Hangars as the next new feature, but I realised the detection of science parts was possible and so hangars got put on hold while I did this. But I’m going back to adding Hangars now.
Since adding pretty urls for craft in 0.7.0 there have been a few issues with some urls not working but I think those are mostly sorted now. Because your username is used in the urls for your craft there are now restrictions on what characters you can have in your username. A couple of you will need to change your usernames slightly, but I’ll mail you about that.
I’ve made a bit of a change to the login style and have removed the login/signup forms that slid in from the sides. I liked them, but they where causing problems on some browsers.
Quite a few things smushed together in this update;
Pretty Craft Urls - new feature
This is something I’ve been promising to do for ages, finally got round to it.
Previously your craft had urls like
http://kerbalx.com/crafts/42, those urls still work but you now get much nicer ones with this format;
http://kerbalx.com/username/craftname for example; http://kerbalx.com/katateochi/KnatRangerXL
If you’ve already posted links to your craft here with the old style urls, don’t worry, those links will carry on working.
Saved Searches (Mod Packs) - new feature
Again this is something I’ve wanted to add for a while. If you have used the PartMapper tool and uploaded a part-map, then the site knows what mods you have installed and can now load all of your mods into a search that will find you craft that are compatable with your install.
If you’ve not uploaded a part-map but you have uploaded some craft then there is an option to load the mods that your craft use into a search, that will at least find craft that use the same set of mods as the craft you’ve uploaded.
As I was building this I realised I was making a search save feature, so you can now save searches and recall them again later (and share them using a url). So if the site doesn’t know about your mods or if what it knows is wrong, you can adjust which mods you are searching for craft with and any other filters and then save that search.
There are also a number of per-defined example searches that guest and logged-in users can use. Logged-in users are able to delete those examples and save their own searches.
I hope the example searches might help people see more about how to use the mod filters part of the search interface.
Search by Mod - change
I get the feeling (not that I’m spying on you or anything) that folk aren’t making much use of the really powerful aspect of the site which is finding craft according to mod. When working on the saved searches I realised it was kinda confusing because of the need to add or remove stock parts to make the different mod filters work propperly.
So I’ve simplified the search-by-mod interface; before you needed to
add stock parts for some of the filters to work and remove them for other filters, which while enabling a more detailed search, was pretty confusing.
So now you don’t have to worry about stock parts. It’s a very small change but I think it really improves that feature.
Mods Index - change
I’ve added sorting functionality to the display of mods the site knows about http://kerbalx.com/mods and I’ve also changed the style of their display. If you missed the last update; you can now suggest download urls for mods and this feature is now accessible on the mod index and mod pages.
Mod download links
You can now suggest download links for mods (open a craft’s mod list and click
suggest DL link or
edit/rate link. Once a link has been suggested other users can vote it up or down or suggest other links.
URLs can only be suggested for a set of white-listed domains; kerbalstuff, github, forum.kerbalspaceprogram, curse and dropbox.
If you think of a domain that should be added to the white-list come and suggest it on the forum.
I’ve not added any new features with this update, but I’ve (hopefully) improved the speed of the site. Particularly on the mod details pages. Loading the craft edit page should also be faster.
More new features like
pretty urls, hangers(favourites) and download links for mods are in the pipe.
Updating Existing Craft
You can now update craft you’ve uploaded. They will be re-scanned and mod lists and craft info will be updated but otherwise the craft’s page will be unchanged.
You will be asked if you want to update an existing craft or create a new one if:
- You upload a craft that has the same name as one you’ve already uploaded.
- You go to a specific craft’s page and upload a craft file
Notifications and Craft Stats
Notificiations about craft up/down votes and downloads have been changed. You now get one notification that displays recent activity on your craft, rather than a separate notification for each event. You still get notified the instant something happens (if you’re online), but you won’t have to click through lots of notifications after being away for a while.
You can still set which events (upvote, downvote, download) you get notified about in your notification settings
There is also a craft stats page that shows upvotes, downvotes, downloads and views for all of your craft. You can get to this page from the menu in the header, or by going to http://KerbalX.com/stats
- Craft that have TweakScale present but don’t have any scaled parts will no longer be detected as using TS.
- Craft that use TweakableEverything are now detected, unfortunately there is no way to tell if TweakableEverything is actually applied.
- Both FAR and NEAR craft are detected, but as they both add the same module, all will be shown as FAR.
Some of your craft will have had their mod lists updated.
Navigation on Craft Pages
There are now next and previous tabs on craft pages. They will take you to the next/previous result in your last search (or all craft if no search).
Search by KSP version
You can now filter craft by the version of KSP they were made in.
You can now use more of the BBcode styles that we use on the forum. ie you can now add images in like this [img]http://i.imgur.com/BkQCWgW.jpg[/img] aswell as in the Kerbdown style [img:http://i.imgur.com/BkQCWgW.jpg]
Click the Markdown help link when editing craft or commenting to see more of the formats available.
Introducing the strawberry cheesecake version
You’ll be pleased to hear of a new feature that allows you to download a strawberry cheese cake if you bash you face against the screen hard enough