I like DropBox

I’ve expressed my disdain for a number of things, primarily Hy-tek’s poor SDIF support in this forum so I guess it is appropriate that I also note some things I find useful and work well.  DropBox is one of them.  It solves a problem and solves it very well.

A lot of swim team files are shared among a group of people and e-mailing them around can be problematic.  We’re using DropBox to share some of the files and I am planning to store our WinSwim database in DropBox so the Swim Team’s computer and my computer will have access to the same database file.  I am optimistic that doing this will allow us to collaborate on the meet line up and heat sheet process without having to mail files around.  I’ll report back later on how it works out.

In the mean time, if you want to check out DropBox (free for 2GB of storage), use this DropBox referal link and I will get some extra space as will you when you sign up!

What’s next for wp-SwimTeam?

I have one more feature to add to the Jobs module before I consider it complete.  I have a request to be able to send out Reminder Notifications on a per swim meet basis which should be pretty straight forward to implement and I hope to have it done in the next day or two.

Once that is complete, I need to decide what to do next.  I have a couple of choices.

  1. I’ve had a couple requests to be able to import a roster into wp-SwimTeam.  I don’t think this will be too difficult technically but it does require a couple decisions.  Since swimmers in wp-SwimTeam are connected to parent or guardian users, what WordPress userid would the imported swimmers be connected to?  The obvious choice is the Admin user or user running the import.  Swimmers could then be updated at a later time to connect them to the appropriate WordPress user if/when it exists.
  2. Import results.  This has long been on my to-do list because the MacDolphins need it.  I’ve been working on processing results off an on as a side project (see Flip-Turn) with the intent to fold that work into wp-SwimTeam when it is functioning and useful.  I already have a lot the functionality working and the GUI will look familiar to wp-SwimTeam users but I have yet to tackle relays and really push the robustness of the SDIF parsing.
  3. Hy-tek/SDIF compatibility.  This is also something I need for the upcoming season.  Anyone who has read much of this blog knows that I am not a big fan of Hy-tek and their goofy checksum and weak support of SDIF.  Since it isn’t likely to change and lots of teams use Hy-tek, we need to resolve the data exchange problem.  This issue may be the highest priority for me personally and I’ve debated whether to build some functionality into wp-SwimTeam to try and resolve sharing data with Hy-tek teams.

Comments and suggestions are welcome.  I try to incorporate suggestions quickly if I can.

wp-SwimTeam v1.5.579 released

I have just released wp-SwimTeam v.1.5.579, you can find it on the download page and shortly, via the automatic plugin updater.  This release fixes an issue which has bothered me personally for a long time.

There was a problem in the E-mail Confirmation code for both registrations and opt-in/opt-out.  This same code was used for the new Jobs module so it existed there too.  For a long time the confirmation e-mails were duplicated and if a swimmer had to two contacts, only one of them would receive the e-mail.  I have finally found and fixed this problem so e-mail confirmation should be cleaner and sent to the appropriate people.

wp-SwimTeam v1.4.573 released

This evening I released wp-SwimTeam v1.4.573.  It can be downloaded from this web site or from the WordPress plugin repository.  The plugin auto-update will also update to this release.  New and fixed in this release are:

  • Fixed bug in Opt-In/Opt-Out e-mail confirmation which duplicated recipients.
  • Fixed bug in handling Country when set to US Only.
  • Added Club Profile initialization based on State or Province in Team Profile.
  • Added E-mail confirmation for Job Assignments.
  • Added Job Options tab on Options page to configuring Jobs module.

Make sure you visit the Job Options tab to configure your jobs module.  There is still work to be done to report the number of credits a user has signed up for and to flag which users have not met the threshold.  Hopefully that functionality will come in the next week or two.

Update: This release had a minor update due to a file missing from the WordPress plugin repository.  The missing file prevented the Jobs Options tab from rendering.  Other minor tweaks were also made to the Jobs Confirmation e-mails.

wp-SwimTeam v1.3.561 now available

A new release of wp-SwimTeam is now available for download.  It is also available via automatic update from the WordPress plugin repository.  This release fixes a couple of bugs and adds two new features, one of which addresses functionality that was coded but never exposed correctly.

  1. Fixed bug in wpst_meet_report short code.
  2. Fixed bug in Add/Update Club Profile due to invalid URL field(s).
  3. Added showmaplinks option to wpst_meet_report short code.
  4. Added URL sanitatization to Google Maps and Mapquest URL fields on club profile.
  5. Added notes to use Google URL shortner for URLs that don’t validate.

I am not sure when it was added but MapQuest now generates “shortened” URLs when mapping an address, I wish Google would do likewise.  The URLs that Google Maps generates tend to be a mile long and full of characters.  My suggestion is to use Google’s URL shortener to generate a simple URL that can be saved within WordPress easily.  That is what I am doing for the MacDolphins web site.

The phpHtmlLib library which wp-SwimTeam depends on has also had a minor bug fix which I found testing URL validation.  This plugin can also be updated t v2.6.2.3546 using the WordPress plugin updater or can be downloaded and installed as in the past.

Add Swim Club bug

There is a bug in the “Add Swim Club” functionality.  I ran into this issue this morning but haven’t had a chance to diagnose it yet.  I hope to have it identified and fixed sometime today.  I apologize for the inconvenience.  To work around this problem I am choosing “None” as the opponent and then adding a note in the description field.


This bug only occurs when the Google Maps URL is used.  I am trying to determine what in the Google Maps URL the validation isn’t happy with and why the data is reported as saved when it is not.

Using the WordPress auto-updater?

WordPress has a nice built in feature to update plugins when there is a new version available.  Because wp-SwimTeam isn’t hosted in the official WordPress plugin repository, I haven’t been able to take advantage of this feature.

I have set up projects in the official WordPress plugin repository for both wp-SwimTeam and phpHtmlLib.   I am working on a process where the plugin updater will work by adding the code into the WordPress repository when Iam ready to release it.

Currently the version of the code in the WordPress repository is the same as what is available for download although the version number reported is wrong (1.0.553 vs 1.2.553).  The “553” is the critical part of the release number because it represents the Subversion commit number (build number) that the release is based on.

If you see a “plugin out of date” message within the WordPress Dashboard, it is because I am working on this process.  The latest and greatest release will likely be available first as a download on this site but when I reach what I consider a “stable” release, I will also make it available through the WordPress plugin repository.  Stay tuned as this flushes out.

wp-SwimTeam v1.2.553 available

A minor bug was found in swimmer and user profiles when the optional field count was zero.  This bug only appeared if previously the option count had been non-zero and data had been entered for swimmers and/or users for the optional fields.  This release fixes this problem which also manifested itself in the registration confirmation e-mail.


wp-SwimTeam v1.2.552 now available

This morning I posted wp-SwimTeam v1.2.551.  This release fixes a couple of bugs and adds a couple minor features and addresses one major issue.

  1. Prior to this release a new user could add a swimmer without completing their swim team parent/guardian profile but a warning was displayed.  The warning is now an error and no further action can proceed until the profile information is completed.
  2. Throughout the wp-SwimTeam dashboard much of the information is displayed in a widget that can be searched, sorted, and paged through.  The number of rows that is displayed is now controlled by a setting on the Options->Miscellaneous tab.
  3. A couple of minor bugs have fixed with respect to reporting.
  4. There was a serious bug which occurred when the number of User or Swimmer optional fields was set to zero.  This has been fixed and the ability to essentially “turn off” optional fields for users or swimmers now works correctly.