On October 22nd, the UseBB project is officially 2 years old. Congratulations to myself and a big thank you to all the people and companies which helped with the development of UseBB and making the project possible.
UseBB started as a small personal forum script in 2002 and got registered under its new name on October 22 2003. Development of the current UseBB software started begin 2004 and the very first release went public on February 27 2004. Since then, development advanced slowly but with good results, and nowadays we have reached beta versions of 0.7 and nearing the final 1.0. For me personally, developing UseBB greatly improved my knowledge of PHP and everything else which relates to its development, and I hope this is also the case for many people using UseBB and contributing by giving feature requests and bug reports. Again, to these people: thank you!
With this I will also explain something about the originality of the UseBB project. The last few months, I have heard many times that UseBB is "yet another forum package" and that it tries to clone any other forum software or at least mimics the looks of other popular boards. Let me explain the initial idea of UseBB. UseBB is meant to be light forum software, which means it should only contain the essential of a forum package and what people need the most. That's why UseBB targets at small to mid-sized websites because these mostly don't require a large solution. Even the nowadays most popular PHP bulletin board contains some unneeded features but misses some other fairly convenient ones. UseBB tries to fill that gap and provides a solution for the people needing simplicity and effectiveness. UseBB is by no means suitable if you want a forum with all the new exotic features that is almost unusable for "normal people". In other words, UseBB is "pure" forum software. So, UseBB does not try to clone nor mimic any other software but is original in its own way. People who use UseBB can confirm this. Of course, it is impossible to be a hundred percent unique, but that is obviously.
A birthday announcement wouldn't be a birthday announcement if nothing is said about the future. People active on the forums know about the plans of UseBB 2, and some facts are now almost as good as certain. UseBB 2 will be a complete rewrite of the code in OOP PHP5. The reason for this is because PHP5 is getting more and more popular and it has more possibilities for object oriented programming. UseBB 0.x certainly isn't coded perfectly, so we try to solve this in the second major version. The system should be more flexible and a lot easier for 3rd parties to create mods, plugins, etc... Also, it should able us to implement some more advanced features later on, such as private messages and polls (which could ofcourse be disabled completely when unwanted). The development of UseBB 2 will start after the release of UseBB 1.0, and at least until the release of 2.0 the 1.0 version will remain maintained, so people can keep their 1.0 board secure and bug free. When to expect 1.0 is not known at the time of writing. I'm not keeping a schedule but try to work as good as possible. In any case, keep your 0.x board up-to-date to see the latest progress on development.
In the mean time, development is going slow because a few other problems need to be resolved, such as creating new official documentation and updating the website. Currently bugs are still being fixed in CVS where the development of 0.7 beta 2 resides. If you are interested, feel free to download a snapshot.
I hope the UseBB project will get more popular soon and that it will accomplish its goal. Thank you for your continued support, and if you are not yet active on the forums, do so now! I'd love to see you in the third year of UseBB! :)