New features: blog post auto-summary and more

As a part of this week's upgrades to our system, we’ll be pushing out some new features. We wanted to give you a heads up on these so you’ll be aware of what’s coming.

Blog post auto-summary

AutoSummaryWe’ll be implementing a new auto-summary feature for blog posts. You’ve always had the ability to specify summaries for blog posts, but up to now, you’ve had to manually create them. The new auto-summary feature will automatically create summaries for every blog post by using the first three sentences of the post in the summary field. You’ll still have the ability to override the auto-summary and specify your own summary if you wish.

Don’t worry, this won’t change anything on existing blog posts. We'll disable auto-summaries for posts in the system prior to the launch. But auto-summary will be turned on by default for all posts you create after we launch the feature. When you're creating a blog post, you can click on the "Advanced" tab to turn the new auto-summary feature off for that post.

Keep in mind that blog post summaries are currently only visible if you choose the “list with summary” skin for your blog element. If you do not have any blog elements using the “list with summary” skin, the auto-summary feature will not affect your site in any way.

Force new password

We’re also adding a security feature that will give website administrators the ability to force users to create new passwords the next time they log in. Simply check the box on the user’s settings screen and the user will be required to enter a new password before accessing the site. This is ideal for setting up new users. You can now give them a “placeholder” password knowing that on their next login they will have to set up their own unique password.

New look on user settings and website settings screen

Last week, we began rolling out enhancements to the look of the system settings screens. The changes are currently visible on the user settings screen, and tomorrow’s release will add the new look to the website settings screen as well. This is all a part of our push to continuously enhance our system and tools and to ensure consistency.

Estimated launch time

We're planning for these features to launch on Wednesday, December 8th, 2010 around noon CST (GMT -6). We do not anticipate any downtime related to this upgrade.

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