Oxwall: The Progress

Oxwall: The ProgressLadies and gentlemen,

Today we would like to share some great news with you. Oxwall Foundation has reached several important milestones, which prove that we are moving in the right direction, steadily giving the community tools necessary for our common success.

First of all, Oxwall Software now boasts over 71000 source lines of code. Compare that with 64000 of the very first Oxwall iteration released in August 2010. Not bad, considering that this metric is a very important indicator of a project’s size, and shows the effort the development team puts behind it.

Now, that was the platform itself. Even more impressive is the rapid increase in the number of source lines of code for plugins developed by the Oxwall Foundation. Altogether they now take over 64000 LOC (30% growth from the times of Oxwall 1.0.1), which is really impressive, when you take into account the time-frame and the relatively small team size.

All of that, coupled with the success of the recently released Oxwall 1.3 helped to boost the platform downloads from the 250 per day average in 2011, all the way up to 350 at the start of 2012.

Finally, Oxwall Store also witnesses some stable evolution since its full-scale launch a mere year ago. By now, the gradually growing number of published items have passed 100, adding even more to the progress of the entire project.

With our joint efforts and great input from the international Oxwall community, these achievements have been reached in just under two years. This is the programming productivity and expansion rates we are quite content with, although we’ll be obviously looking to build on this success even further in the near future.


An unfortunate slip made its way into the above text. Of course we meant the DAILY download average (not monthly) in the fourth paragraph. So, the daily platform download average in 2011 was 250, boosted up to 350 since the release of Oxwall 1.3.




Let’s cut to the chase. If you are reading this, you likely already know what SOPA and PIPA are, you’ve seen the darkened Wikipedia, you’ve noticed Google’s laconic petition, and you’ve heard millions of protesting voices all over the net screaming in rage against a couple of bills currently moving through the US Congress.

If you haven’t notice anything at all, congratulations. You just might be one of the few people, who, along with SOPA and PIPA proponents, talk about “online community” as if it was some sort of outcast group. This failure to realise that the world has really changed, and absolutely everyone is now part of this online community; that absolutely everyone will be harmed in one way or another if the bills will make it, is simply overwhelming.

Here at Oxwall and Wall.fm we support websites, companies, and individuals who are protesting SOPA and PIPA. We believe that installing censorship in any form, blocking websites, killing the notion of “fair use”, disrespecting user submitted content, reducing privacy, etc., is not only a huge blow to the progressive development of the Internet, but also a general assault on democracy and freedom of expression – something we give people collective tools for.

Most importantly, we do not want anyone to have the ability to puppeteer the Internet and then face the grim future where the law could suddenly place too much power into wrong hands, inevitably leading to the abuse of said power. Stop SOPA.

First Official Oxwall Google+ Hangout January 19

As promised last month, we have finally found time for a Google+ Hangout with you guys. All admins running Oxwall-powered websites, or anyone interested in joining our rapidly growing community are welcome to join us next Thursday, January 19th, at 12PM EST (6PM CET) for an informal chat.

Once again, Oxwall founder Emil will be on hand to speak about his vision for the product, answer any questions, and even make important announcements concerning Oxwall Software and Oxwall Store. Oh yeah, and also to simply hangout with like-minded people. Trust us, you don’t want to miss it.

For those not in the know – Google+ Hangout is basically a multi-user video chat available to anyone with a Google account. Before joining a Hangout you should make sure your webcam, microphone, and speakers (or headphones) are all working properly. Also, we advise to run a quick test Hangout if you’ve never done it before, just to make sure you have all the necessary plugins installed. If you have everything ready, add Emil (gplus.to/emil) to one of your Circles and wait for him to launch the Hangout at designated time – you’ll see a notification on your Google+ Stream.

Now, since we have a truly international community here, with members all across the globe, we had to think long and hard about the best time to hold the Hangout. Launching it at 12PM EST seems to be the best possible compromise, but as always, we are open to your suggestions. Let us know what you think, what you want to talk about, or if you have any technical questions regarding the Hangout in the comments bellow.

Oxwall Store Increased Quality Control

Dear friends,

We are happy to report that Oxwall Store is coming along quite nicely, judging by the steadily growing volume of new items and sales. Unfortunately, quantity does not always translate to quality, and like everyone, we notice the appearance of mediocre-to-poor submissions.

This is not what we had in mind initially. We are also sure most Oxwall admins will agree that Oxwall Store should not become another online collection of second-rate mods of existing plugins and themes.

Oxwall Foundation always strove for improved quality for the end user and we anticipate the community will follow our lead. We all still have a long way to go to reach the desired level of excellence, but with small steps in the right direction we can do it.

One of such steps will be the introduction of stricter quality control for Oxwall Store submissions, in accordance with our Terms of Use. We hope everyone understands that this decision will benefit the project in the long run. Let’s make Oxwall better together.

Oxwall Drops IE7 Support

It looks like the time has come to finally push that button. Starting with Oxwall 1.2.7 we’ll completely cut support for Internet Explorer 7. It just had to happen somewhere down the road for a number of reasons. Microsoft’s browser is outdated, unresponsive, incredibly slow, and has a major disadvantage of having far superior and popular competition worth supporting out there. Check this out, it’s browser popularity last month –

Oxwall Drops IE7 Support

Now, if you think that’s not representative enough, look at last year’s graph –

Oxwall Drops IE7 Support

Also, we have more pictures –

Oxwall Drops IE7 Support

See, that’s Microsoft hunting down its own IE6 – trying to eliminate the last few remaining copies of that cursed software. Well, we are not Microsoft, so we boldly went even further and just decided that IE7 doesn’t cut it. Want to know who cuts it? We have a list of all browsers supported by Oxwall right here.

Anyway, IE7 is out of the picture for good, and only good can come of this, obviously. Just thought that’d be good news to start the year. Good.

Happy 2012!

Happy 2012!And so the time has come to say goodbyes to 2011. We hope that the past year gave you a lot of great memories, just as it did to the Oxwall Foundation staff.

At the same time, we are sure that 2012 will see even more breakthroughs, innovation, and real success, as we look forward to continue bringing our vision to the community, in the form of Oxwall Software.

Our entire team wishes you all the best in the New Year! Let the Dragon bring power and wealth to all of you!

Oxwall Hangout Call in Meetup Aftermath

OK, so the first Oxwall Meetup NYC is now the thing of the past. It was loads of fun, I’m sure, with beer, pizza, guitar music, etc… All enjoyed exclusively by Oxwall Founder Emil sitting alone in a Manhattan pub.

Yeah, I guess the short notice and geographical location did not do Oxwall fans any favors, and sadly no one showed up. But hey, we learned a mighty lesson here, and more thought will go into organizing meetups in the future. That’s right, we are unfazed and are moving on.

To prove our commitment to hearing directly from the community, and also taking cues from the pre-meetup feedback, we are going to setup Google+ Hangouts for admins running Oxwall-powered websites, hosted by Emil and other fine Oxwall people. This way we’ll keep the informal feel we were going after, and eliminate the minor problem of not being physically present in the US.

Watch this space, Oxwall’s Facebook or Twitter for a special announcement regarding the first Hangout. We’ll see you there!

In Focus: Koktui.com

We haven’t focused on a website in a while, so while we wait for the next scheduled update, why not dig in our portfolio for more examples of great creativity and customization skills displayed by Oxwall members.

Meet Koktui, a niche community network for connecting Nagas of the world. And if you don’t know who the Nagas are, maybe you should join the site and get introduced to their amazing culture.

The site itself shows great implementation of web 2.0 aesthetics.  The presentation is crystal clear and easy on the eyes. The front-page design is intuitive, straightforward and very inviting. Everything about the destination gives the immediate sense of calm, professionalism and dedication to bringing members of a specific community together. And that’s all we need to award this social network the In Focus achievement. Great job!


Oxwall Meetup NYC (VENUE UPDATE)

I’ve got something exiting to share with you guys.

In just a couple of weeks we’ll be holding the first official Oxwall Meetup ever!

Oxwall team wants to see the real people behind communities built with our software. We plan to hold regular informal meetups all around the world, talk with Oxwal enthusiasts, show them what we are working on, and allow admins to mingle and get to know each other better.

The first official Oxwall meetup will be held in O’Lunney’s Times Square Pub NYC. 145 West 45th Street, New York, NY 10036, on December 9th, at 7PM. Oxwall founder Emil will be on hand to serve free pizza, share exclusive Oxwall news, answer any questions, and generally hang out (he plays guitar, just ask him).

So, if you want to be a part of our history, go ahead and confirm your attendance. We realize that not everyone will be able to make it to New York this time around, but the meetup will take place anyway, even if just a few of you will show up. C’mon, join on the fun.

Oxwall: It’s Been a Hell of a Year!

Guess what? It’s been a little over a year since Oxwall entered this world to face life as a competitive open source product. During this time the software has really come a long way (more precisely, all the way to 1.2.6), and luckily this force seems to be unstoppable at this point. Let’s look back twelve or so months and tally the sort-of end-of-year results.

We don’t want to be precarious, and so start with a little graphics courtesy of Google Analytics. Look below – we are clearly witnessing an exponential growth: more Oxwall-powered communities are being set up, more plugins developed, more people join on the fun. The graph shows the daily number of admin area accesses on different Oxwall sites.

Oxwall: It's Been a Hell of a Year!
Oxwall websites daily admin access dynamics.

As the Oxwall project matured, a key decision was made by the team last year – a more structured and carefully planned development/release schedule was put in place, resulting in a more predictable update pattern. More flexibility in development was also achieved by the switch from SVN to Mercurial Distributed Version Control System.

At the same time, the fine-tuning of the Auto-update system proved to be a success, and made sure all community members are on the same page come update time. It helped admins to consistently be on the edge by always knowing about the releases of the latest builds, or what needs to be additionally configured.

Due to these shifts in the development/release processes, we’ve been able to greatly speed up the reaction to all reported issues, and reached a new level when it comes to critical bug fixing. More importantly, the Auto–update system reduced the number of different software versions installed, as the latest build is usually employed by almost 80% of all active websites within a week of a release.

Oxwall versions in use.

Oxwall really went global, with several groups across the world setting up Oxwall-dedicated communities, working on local translation, member support, and distribution of the software. To facilitate these efforts we have tweaked our policies and even came up with the Oxwall Club; a membership in which will bring even more benefits to said groups.

Oxwall: It's Been a Hell of a Year!In the meantime, more international exposure was achieved after a page about Oxwall project appeared on the Wikipedia; while a greater market penetration through the inclusion of the software to the Softaculous and Simple Scripts collections brought significant traffic increase.

More recently we’ve added the support of Cloud File Storage for networks’ static content, and also saw the appearance of first paid plugins and themes in the Oxwall Store, which will drive even more creative and progressive energy towards the project. We are looking forward to seeing what you’ll come up with next.

And make no mistake, this is all just the beginning of a very exiting journey. The team behind Oxwall is truly committed to producing the best social builder around, and we do have great plans for the future. Thank you for choosing us.