Introducing Exxp - the rebranded and much improved replacement to the steempress plugin

in #exxplast month (edited)

This update has been a long time in the making, as we the @steempress team are finally ready to launch our new and renamed plugin for WordPress: Exxp. Despite its name, steempress has been Hive exclusive ever since the Hive hardfork. Today, we are happy to introduce the new brand, as well as several new features!


exxp logo post header.png

The new logo for our plugin. Visit Exxp.io to learn more


What's the name about? And why did it take so long to rename?

Following the Hive hard fork in spring, we had a lot of discussions with the WordPress team in the hope of changing the name for our plugin. However, it turned out that changing the name and/or url of a plugin was simply not allowed. So we had to create and submit a new one. We would like to encourage all of our users to download and rate the new plugin, as we intend to discontinue supporting new updates for the old steempress plugin as soon as most users have made the switch (a positive review on the new plugin would also be highly appreciated!).

With the need to rename came the opportunity to also do a complete rebrand. Something we had planned to do for a long time anyway. Over the years, we've found it difficult to design modern social UIs with yellow and black as the dominant colors. As we prepared a series of improvements to our user-dashboard, as well as plans for the future, we wanted to build it with a visual identity better fit for our plans and ambitions.


Big wordpress banner.png

The new visual identity and color scheme for Exxp exxp.io


The same applies to the name. One of our first feedbacks when we launched steempress early 2018 was whether or not it could become compatible with other blogging platforms, thus already demonstrating the limitations imposed by a platform-specific name. Furthermore, we see a vision for Hive as a universal platform for several websites and and apps to connect. We thus wanted a brand name reflecting and supporting such a vision, rather than our current platforms. To us, the concepts of 1. enabling free expression and giving people ownership of their online presence, and 2. supporting a decentralized social media with cross platform integration and synergy are the very cores of that vision. These phrases are also key to what the plugin provides: A social comment section (expression), and automatic cross posting (cross platform). Hence the new and shorter name: Exxp - express yourself cross platform.

What's new!

A new name and logo aside, this is still one of our biggest updates yet with a brand new website (exxp.io), much improved user dashboard, a new option to recover content stored on the blockchain, and an improved onbaording experience.

Perhaps most interesting to our existing users, we've created an entirely new user dashboard. Here, one can check the status of both your Hive account and blog posts published through our plugin.

New user dashboard

You can find our new dashboard at https://exxp.io/dashboard, or through the "my account" button on our website. For now, it primarily includes a Blog page and a Hive account page.

Hive account page:

Dashboard Account Replies.png

A sample image from the Hive account page within our new user dashboard accessible through exxp.io

The Hive account page displays information and provides settings relevant to one's Hive account. This includes:

  • General account information including voting power, resource credits and token balances.
  • A profile tab which lets you easily change your profile picture, display name, location, website etc from within the Dashboard. Ideal especially for our users who are not using traditional Hive front ends.
  • A replies tab to show recent replies to any of your posts and comments and lets you navigate to them on your different blog posts.
  • A referral tab which currently displays your referral link that you can use to onboard new users to Hive through Exxp (we provide free accounts to anyone with a decent blog), allowing you to earn 10% of any future benefactor rewards we make on their content. Anyone with a Hive account can earn rewards by helping refer new users to Exxp!
  • The rewards tab give new users some help to understand how they can earn rewards on Hive. We expect to add more detailed statistics here in the future.
The blog page:

A sample image from the Blog page within our new user dashboard accessible through exxp.io

While the account page is specific to the Hive account, the blog page is specific to the WordPress blog connected through the plugin. Here, you can see all posts stored on the blockchain, moderate the comment section, and apply general settings.

The posts page also provides some cool new features. Most notably is the option to download the post in its original raw wordpress format. Thus allowing anyone to fully restore any blogposts stored on Hive on a future blog they may have. This can come in handy for anyone who runs into hosting issues, has their content taken down, or otherwise failed to store backups of their content. To us, this represents a very important value proposition of Exxp to any bloggers.

New website exxp.io:

With a new name, brand identity and colours, we also redesigned our website accordingly. While we expect it to see several improvements in the coming weeks, we still feel it looks a whole lot better than the previous version. Please give it a visit and share your initial thoughts on its layout and messaging. Is there anything you would have liked to communicate to a new visitor that we've left out?

Our new landing page exxp.io

Next, our sign-up process has also received an overhaul in order to be cleaner and simpler. We've been very happy to see our traffic to these pages steadily increase over the past few months with an ever increasing number of people signing up to get a Hive account. That's of course great news and we hope this trend can not only continue, but accelerate, with our new website. Please, if you have any old links in old posts directing people to our sign-up page, replace them with a link to exxp.io/sign-up, or find your referral link in our new user dashboard.

Our new sign-up page with our new visual identidy

Other changes

While not visible to you, we've also made a lot of changes to our software as a whole. We’ve been developing steempress for three years now, and accumulated lot of technical debt (things we wanted to fix, optimizations, shortcuts that were taken that now slows us down after the fact). So similarly to how the Hive blockchain team did a lot of work to stabilize and optimize the Hive blockchain for hard fork 24, we similarly did a lot of work to allow us to support new features more easily.

For instance we’ve long wanted to support Twitter and Facebook logins, but were stuck because in order to support them we had to rework a lot of the authentication processes. That’s now done meaning we can easily add such features in the near future!

Additionally, there were a lot of small bugs that we fixed along the way, like misalignments, text not being sent correctly or avatars not loading correctly.

Finally we had a lot of work ahead of us to adapt everything to work with the hard fork 24 apart from the obvious Steem -> Hive changes, we heavily rely on hivemind for a lot of our processes for the comment section in particular and hivemind went under a lot of changes so so a lot of work was spent there.

You can download the new plugin here : https://wordpress.org/plugins/exxp-wp/

As always, if you have any questions then please visit us on our discord channel!

If you appreciate our contributions to Hive, then consider voting for our witness @steempress

All the best,

@Howo and @Fredrikaa

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Don't forget to follow us on Twitter at https://twitter.com/exxpio :)

Congratulations @howo and @fredrikaa. I know that this has been a long haul, and you have nailed it. There is so much to be excited about and for me, with what I went through earlier this year -

Thus allowing anyone to fully restore any blogposts stored on Hive on a future blog they may have. This can come in handy for anyone who runs into hosting issues, has their content taken down, or otherwise failed to store backups of their content. To us, this represents a very important value proposition of Exxp to any bloggers.

is the cherry on the top!

I will be installing (now) and updating my bits (ha!) in the next day or so.

Thank you fiona! And thank you for having been with us for all this time:).

Hopefully, this feature alone can attract quite a few people and make it easier to explain why it's a neat product

When I come down to earth (it's been a bit of a rough patch), I will write one of my rare crypto-focused posts via WordPress. It will, of course, get the "Fiona treatment" that some of my fellow @exxp users, @nickyhavey and others like @chees4ead and @plantstoplanks tease me about. I'll try not to do more than 1,000 words... 🤣

Oh, and it's a no brainer - being with you - for someone who was is is a coding novice with less intention of learning it, and with an existingg WordPress blog, this plugin is heaven sent.

I've already given it the Havey Treatment, now it's time for the Fiona Treatment haha! We are Exxpecting it!

🤔🤣🥂

Posted using Dapplr

Awesome stuff guys!

This is a great rebrand and the site / plug in look fantastic.

Looking forward to getting my Wordpress blog fired back up :)

Thank you!😃 It's been a lot of work, but for once I feel really happy showing it off!

Let me know when you have it up:)

Awesome @fredrikaa. Was wondering how that was going to work. Looks like a great transition strategy. Definitely, be updating my site to the new plugin shortly. Looks good!

Thank you @jasonbu! Looking forward to seeing your first post with it:)

And don't forget to give it a rating/review in the app;)

I just read half of this post and was like, insta searching for it on the wordpress plugin data base! Love the new name, makes complete sense aaaaaand, it's really easy to find in the plugin search being quite unique:

image.png

I've installed, activated and going to give the new plug in a go this evening when I'm back from a cheeky hike! Just put my key in, all looks good (although no status to say "connected" like there was before).

Steempress is gone haha!

Thanks a lot of the epic update and congratulations on the rebrand - a lot of sweat gone in to that! Thanks to @fionasfavourites for bringing to my attention!

Any time...happy to help. 😀

Love hearing that!😃 And thank you😊

Just posted my first one now after doing a few checks to update the tags and settings I was using before:

  • It shows up on the extremely SLICK looking Exxp site
  • Using the first tag as a community tag on Hive puts it in the right community page like before
  • Just the signature seems to have a little bug that needs editing in the post footer but I'll tweak and let you know if it's something my end or needs another look at!

Love it!

That's great to hear!:) We'll take a look at the footer and see if there's anything different🤔

Don't forget to also leave it a good rating and review in the plug-in store;), it helps us a lot!:)

Aha! I literally just gave you a review now along with a couple of others and following on Twitter!

I have just updated and made some modification to the footer in the plug-in. Seems to add a space between the br and / <br /> which may knock the formatting a little bit - I noticed this in the previous plug-in but I managed to sort it somehow (probably should have copied the footer I used before shipping out the old plugin haha).

E.G. today's blog - instead of it being a link it would be showing [link](with the url instead) in the footer but I'll keep playing, usually takes a couple of goes to get the footer but everything else - spot on!

Congrats @Howo and @Fredrikaa!!

Super exciting news!

And the timing for me couldn't have been better. Will be a heavy user starting November 1st.

Thank you! And that's awesome!😃 Looking forward to seeing what you will be publishing🙂.

And don't forget to rate the new plugin in the store, helps us a lot;)

Congratulations gentlemen! You've done a great job of following through on the original concept and now taking another fantastic step. Thanks for all you do.

Thanks a lot! It's been a pleasure to have you with us on this long journey that I feel is about to catch some good winds again!

Great work @Fredrikaa, it's very amazing to hear this from you. I recently created a blog for sports-related news and I am going to install it. Thank you
Best wishes for your success
Cheers

Thank you! And that's really cool! :) What's the blog url? WOuld be cool to check out :)

Don't forget to leave a positive rating in the plugin store, it helps us (and Hive) a lot :)

I like the name, how much exxp do I need to ding?

Great to hear! You'll know when our new internal rating and gamification system goes live.

Can we call sockpuppet accounts twinks?

Who runs sockpuppets outside of Tron?

there's many accounts but only one owner on steemit trending 🤣

A referral tab which currently displays your referral link that you can use to onboard new users to Hive through Exxp

So finally, we have the great update. Just that everyone knows, the referral tab appears once you click the Hive Account Link.

We have actually had the referral system going for quite a while (about a year or so). But this new dashboard makes it far more convenient!

Nice work!

p.s. typo w 'onbaording'

Woooow thats super nice to see😊👌🏿

Glad you liked it! 😃

Congratulations @exxp! You have completed the following achievement on the Hive blockchain and have been rewarded with new badge(s) :

You received more than 50 upvotes. Your next target is to reach 100 upvotes.

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Do not miss the last post from @hivebuzz:

October 2020 is the World Mental Heath Month

Well done, guys!

Congratulations! Great work!

You have done a great job, I can see your satisfaction for having achieved it. Congratulations!

Great Work.
Grow the hive community through development....


Congratulations, @goldcoin You Successfully Trended The Post Shared By @exxp.
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TAN Current Market Price : 0.200 HIVE

cool thing ;)

HAN oído hablar de amor a primera vista, o en otros casos "Amor a la primera mordida", fue el sentimiento que tuve cuando vi esta publicación, felicidades por este trabajo lo divulgaré para que todos estén al tanto y puedan actualizar, en verdad se ve muy agradable todo...

Congrats! This is awesome! @howo Is it possible to use the old key from steempress?

Yes !

Nice, amazeballllsss!


Congratulations @exxp, You Earned 3.823 TAN & Curators Made 3.823 TAN.

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Join CORE / VAULT Token Discord Channel or Join UPMELINK Web Site
TAN Current Market Price : 0.200 HIVE

This is an amazing update. Thank you!
Is it possible to use Keychain to access the Dashboard?