View Full Version : The New UKDFD - A Sneak Preview

18-11-2017, 11:52 AM
The configuration of our new database software is now well under way, and we are able to share a few screenshots to give everyone an impression of what it will look like.

Fig. 1 shows the upper part of the home page.This is the area from which many different forms of search will be available. It also includes dynamic images of recent records, a map of the database for browsing any category or sub-category, a tag-cloud, and a slide show of finds of special significance, as well as several other features.

Fig. 2 shows an individual record view. You will see that multiple images of an object are possible, each of which can be viewed either full size by clicking the applicable thumbnail, or enlarged by clicking the 'View Larger' button. The record may be printed out directly by clicking the printer icon above, or saved as a pdf file via the link below.

Fig. 3. The button to the left of the printer icon allows users to save the record for comparison with others, a very useful facility if you are conducting research. Fig. 3 shows a list of records saved in this way, which can be viewed together on a separate page and added to or discarded, as appropriate.

Fig. 4 shows a map view. Recorders will be able to place a pin on the map to show their findspot. It may no longer be necessary to record 'findspot', 'parish' or even 'county', but we will ensure that the same degree of confidentiality is maintained.

These are just a few of the enhancements associated with the new software, and details might change before release.

As existing users will know from internal posts, it will not be possible for anyone to register with the UKDFD until the new software is launched (which is still some way off). The registration arrangements will change significantly when the new software comes online, and will be handled via the database software rather than the forum. As previously indicated, anyone who has lost out as a result of subscribing before or during the 'recording shutdown' will be credited accordingly.

As regular visitors may have noticed, the amount we receive from subscriptions falls well below the running costs of the scheme, as indicated by our annual target figure. We have, therefore, had to consider how best to address this shortfall (even greater now with the new software costs!). We have decided that the fairest way to do this is to require a modest contribution from all who register, rather than only from those who record. This will be a standard figure for everyone, with credits available for purchase by those who also wish to record. The new database facilities will only be available to registered members, although it will be possible for anyone to look at individual records.

Existing registered users will be given a month's notice during which they can use the new facilities and decide whether or not to subscribe and become members.

Further information will be made available in due course.

22-11-2017, 08:23 PM
As indicated in our earlier post, we will ensure that the same degree of confidentiality is maintained in respect of findspots. For existing records, the location shown by the pin on the map will be taken from the public 'Findspot' field, not the hidden 'Parish' or 'Grid Reference' fields. To illustrate this, the example below has 'Near Rugby' in the public Findspot field, so the software picks up Rugby and places the pin there. The 'Parish', and 'Grid Reference' fields remain hidden.

You will see from the two images that switching between 'Gallery' (i.e. Record) view and 'Map' view is a one-click toggle in either direction.

We are increasingly confident about the detail of how the new UKDFD will work, so if there are any questions or concerns you have, please feel free to post them on this thread. We do not yet have a close idea of the launch date, as we cannot be sure what problems will arise in testing.

12-12-2017, 11:40 AM
UPDATE - 12/12/17

Our shortlist of outstanding issues currently stands at 22 items, which are progressively being addressed by the software supllier. Almost half of these need to be resolved before we can go live, the remainder are largely cosmetic.

By way of illustration, one of the areas we have recently been addressing is searching by map, which is now functionally satisfactory, but still has minor cosmetic issues.

There are two ways in which searches by map can be made:

1. A search of a complete or partial map of the UK.
2. A search by distance from a particular location.

The images below illustrate an example of each. One shows a map of the UK displaying the results of a search for Coins/Corieltavi; the other has the results of a search for Coins/siliqua within a ten mile radius of Bedford. Both are now functionally satisfactory, but have minor outstanding cosmetic issues. (e.g. individual finds denoted by '0' rather than '1' or '1 record'; no 'Clear' button in search box, etc.)

15-12-2017, 10:10 PM
UPDATE 15/12/17

We know that many of our recorders have been missing the 'My Gallery' feature that we had to remove when the current database became unstable. We hope that the attached screenshots from the new UKDFD will provide some reassurance.

Not only can you view your personal finds in several different gallery formats, you can even take a trip down memory lane and 'revisit' your travels and findspots on map views of your personal finds.

17-12-2017, 02:58 PM
Rod and I have been working on this day and night coding and ironing out problems
Its coming together really well and I look forward to the launch soon and I hope you guys enjoy it.
Its a massive improvement on the old database.
The search system is amazing.

Sandra Shaw
17-12-2017, 10:44 PM
It's good to see it coming together, thank you.

21-12-2017, 07:25 PM
UPDATE 21/12/17

Our shortlist of outstanding issues currently stands at only 4 or 5 items, which are progressively being addressed by the software supllier. We hope to be able to launch the new UKDFD very shortly, so keep checking in regularly.

We may decide to launch the new UKDFD for a very brief period on a view-only basis (i.e. no recording enabled), or with severe restrictions on recording. The reason for this is to allow admin staff the time to address any problems that users and recorders report. The software is very sophisticated and it is likely that we will have missed something during our own testing. Hopefully, any issues that are reported will be minor and easy to resolve.

18-01-2018, 08:53 PM
We intend to launch the new UKDFD tomorrow, 19 January, and attach a copy of the 'Launch Message' that will be emailed to all registered users.

For a short time after its launch, recording will not be enabled. This is to allow time to address any problems that are reported, and to give our staff time to become accustomed to a completely different working environment.

19-01-2018, 12:11 AM
New UKDFD now online: