31 March 2013

PhyloPic Launch: API, Responsive Design, etc.

On Good Friday I took PhyloPic down. On Holy Saturday, I wrestled with errors caused by incongruities between the server and dev environments. And, lo, now, on Easter Sunday I announce that PhyloPic is back! (Actually, I already announced in on Twitter, but whatever.)

How smartphone users should see PhyloPic, more or less.

Major New Features:

  • A Developer API (using JSON). Now other people can build applications using PhyloPic data and images. (Yes, I am dogfooding it, so most of it should be pretty well-tested.)
  • Responsive design (using the ever-more-ubiquitous Bootstrap the site is now much more useable on mobile devices.
  • A Links Page, showing off work that uses PhyloPic or features it in some way.
  • Speedier load times (in theory, anyway).
  • Ranks for Contributors — if you submit one image, you're a "Specialist". Two, and you're a "General". Six, and you're a "Familiar". See where this is going?
  • Fewer requirements — most notably, Flash is no longer required to submit images.
  • Handy little icons on most taxon links — now you can tell if you're clicking on Gastonia the dicotyledonous plant or Gastonia the dinosaur. (Still rolling this out to all taxa.)
Yes, I know the plant doesn't look like that, but at least you can tell it's a plant. We'll just have to wait for someone to illustrate it properly (*cough cough*).

Of course, any launch is going to have issues, as I alluded to above. We're still not out of the woods on a few of them, notably:
Doubtless there are more. You can help out by reporting any errors you encounter. (Remember to include browser info.)

Enjoy! If anyone needs me, I'll be grilling some lamb.

No comments:

Post a Comment