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State Of The Locator

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Life has been very hectic lately between sick kids and rare ice storms in Charleston South Carolina keeping kids home from school, trips to the emergency room, and other “life issues” conspiring to reduce my coding time to near zero.  I am working to get things back on track this week and with some luck I may actually make progress on a few fronts.

There are several things going on that may be of interest to the Store Locator Plus community.

Bug Fixes

I have re-connected with a contract developer that has implemented some patches for me in the past.   iSurge has been doing some great work and I have assigned various patches for him to work on this week.   There will be updates to fix various bugs in the latest Enhanced Results and Store Locator Plus plugins this week.    I am working on Tagalong fixes.   There is some legacy code in that add-on pack that is causing problems with keeping store categories updated.     Next will be getting some much-needed Store Pages patches in place.

New Products

On other code-related fronts, I have started reviewing add-on packs submitted by third party authors.   There are two viable candidates for release this month thanks to user/code DeBaat.    There will be more about him online once the add-on packs launch.   The two add-on packs that he is bringing to the Store Locator Plus ecosystem are the Social Extender add-on pack and the User Managed Locations add-on pack.    There appears to be a lot of demand for both with quite a few people asking for User Managed Locations.    I will work with him to get both out this month.    As an active member of the community I’m certain he will be watching the forums and responding to feature requests and bugs in a timely fashion.

I’m looking forward to working with DeBaat on his new products and future “Store Locator Plus magic” that he comes up with.

Forum Responses

Yes, forum responses are lacking again.   As the bug reports and paid customization work continues to grow the free forum support has become more of a challenge.  I am looking into hiring someone to get up to speed on the products and answer a majority of questions in the forums.   I will still read and check answers and back up the new support position, until then answers will continue to be sporadic.  Especially while carting kids and parents to the doctor in between paid consulting gigs.

I am considering starting a monthly subscription service for support.   The service would have access to the Trello “overview of Store Locator Plus” board as well as a live chat room where I will be hanging out whenever I am online.   I am online for at least a few hours during daytime hours (EST) and late evening hours (EST) and will try to set a fixed schedule.     I need to compare the various online services for ease-of-use before setting this up.    I like IRC but that is very “geeky” and can be difficult for users to understand, though it is 100% web based.    If anyone has WordPress based chat services that work well and can be private (for paid subscriptions only) please share.


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