by: Yehudah Koblick
The following is part of our series, Site Updates and Enhancements, which highlights the ongoing development work happening at Shabbat.com.
As noted previously we’ve completely revamped our transaction email functionality from the ground up. This code-base was published to production this past Tuesday and is still being polished and tweaked. For us, we have a new manageable and robust platform capable of sending hundreds of thousands of emails in way that doesn’t slow down the site one iota, is truly track-able, feature rich, highly customizable, smaller footprint, and most important – flexible (some inspiration). Previously I mentioned some code samples. I’ll be happy to include those next week if interested (just shout in the comments).
Here are just a few improvements you should notice:
An ‘At a glance’ section to introduce you to the Host inviting you (or messaging you). Notice mutual Friends:
Messaging emails group the conversation by day and display clearly both the sender and receiver:
Any email sent from one member (friend added, invite, message, guestbook) to another contains a section enabling the reciever to ‘block’ the member from contacting him/her seeing his/her profile etc.in one click:
An Invite email (initiated by a Host to a potential guest) displays the Host’s location and includes a map and Google turn by turn directions (in the Google app or online):
The friend added email displays full information of the member adding you as a friend as well as several privacy convenience links:
Our updated messaging section on Shabbat.com is clean and easy to use. We added notation to messages that are linked to an invite or hosting request. When sending a message you can always know the context of you message within the conversation and recall something you where told. This format (below) is both implemented on the mobile site so it’s easy to respond through a link on a messaging email on a mobile device, as well as on your desktop or laptop screen.
The app is coming:
Preparations are well underway to begin work on the Shabbat.com app. We are currently in the planning stages of this effort and are going to begin development very soon. I expect to include some screen captures of features as its being built prior to release.
Shabbat.com is almost 4 years old and has grown at an amazing pace. There are so many features both popular and unknown built into the system and we’re deciding what to include and what to shelve for a later time. Additionally, we know from experience that an app that is not fully immerse, fast, and easy to use is a complete waste (read the facebook disaster). We’re taking the time to spec. out the project and ensure that the intended final product will hit its mark.
On the financial side, Rabbi Klatzko is working very hard to secure funding for this initiative so it can be fully realized. Unlike a web project that can be built and released in pieces – an app has to be fully baked to be functional and involves multiple code-bases for the device platforms. It’s a different effort and somewhat of a more complex type. Rabbi Klatzko is heroically spearheading the fundraising effort to this purpose.