Changelog Archive

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February, 2022:

  • Pushed a simplified, much faster-loading, much more accessible homepage
  • Began redirecting category pages to the new Directory app
  • Surpassed 5,000 project entries

February, 2020:

  • Created pages for PolandWashington DC, and South Africa (with additional project data from the curators coming shortly)
  • Fixed over 50 broken or missing project links
  • Removed clutter from submit listing page
  • Fixed 478 project screenshots that went missing due to a site migration bug
  • Updated navigation menu links to point to improved table of contents pages
  • Added all project categories (instead of just one) to card view in lists across the site
  • Fixed broken map pins on sub-page maps (example)
  • Fixed projects’ featured images not appearing on when their map pin is selected

January, 2020:

  • Fixed a pagination bug where proceeding past the first page of search results and category pages would reset the filter to display all listings.
  • Organized and cleaned up tags, and began making them discoverable.
  • Added categories for campaign event tools and official campaign apps.
  • Made the full hierarchy of categories visible on project cards, and restored the category list to listing profile pages.
  • Created a table of contents page for Advocacy tech and Media tech sections, with category descriptions and suggested readings.
  • Updated supporter logos in the footer to their negative versions to better match the dark background.
  • Rewrote submission page confirmation copy.

December, 2019:

  • Imported 171 new project entries.
  • In partnership with the Narrative Initiative, added a Narrative Tech page and relevant subcategories: Story techBig listeningListeningStory-based campaigns, and Internal coordination and communicationMore information here.
  • We’ve added a “commercial” tag to distinguish tools that are mainstream and/or commercial products, but used toward civic ends. For example, WhatsApp and Slack in the Internal coordination and communication category.
  • Expanded the short description field on project cards across the site so they aren’t truncated.
  • Added Trustmarks category to the table of contents.
  • Improved formatting of profile RSS feeds with line breaks.
  • Hid main content area block on profile pages if it’s blank.
  • Added a ‘Message received’ confirmation dialog on the Contact page.
  • Removed extra whitespace in header of blog, and cleaned up blog post header to remove extraneous cruft.
  • Added introduction text at https://civictech.guide/new, and expanded it to include the 50 most recently added entries.
  • Updated the reply-to in site confirmation emails to point to info @ civictech.guide.
  • Added useful sidebar widgets to the blog feed and blog posts.
  • Made the Description field optional on the Submit Listing page to improve the user experience of adding new projects.

November, 2019

  • The NYC page’s map now begins focused on NYC, rather than zoomed out
  • We’ve extended grayed-out background shading to Graveyard entries site-wide, so users can easily distinguish live projects from dead ones.
  • Created a Govtech table of contents page with more category descriptions
  • Improved the homepage world map on mobile to show more than 2 aggregated pin bubbles
  • Upgraded site to PHP 7.3, the latest and most performant version of PHP
  • Updated to WordPress 5.3
  • Optimized CSS, HTML, and Javascript to improve page speed (reduced 44 CSS files to 4)
  • Created a High-tech civic tech table of contents page with category descriptions
  • Fixed line spacing on lists to match normal copy
  • Expanded the “Shows” category to “Shows and films

October 31, 2019

  • Added Internet governance, Public project trackers, cameras, advertising, govtech vendors, and Narrative Tech categories
  • Removed repeating globe image from banner on category pages
  • Removed categories for health, housing, and mobility, as we will be using tags for issue verticals.
  • Added country flag emoji to country pages
  • Created an actual page for the Civic Tech Graveyard
  • Created a better table of contents for the Engagement Tech section
  • Created new country pages with new curators

September 31, 2019

  • Redesigned pillar table of content pages e.g. Civic data
  • Broke the 30 individual civic maps and 39 mapping tools and platforms out into two distinct subcategories.
  • On mobile, moved the Listing sidebar blocks containing the map, project URL, and social links to the top of the Listing entry, instead of the bottom
  • Improved pin clustering on the maps to reduce visual clutter
  • Fixed homepage map pin clustering on mobile
  • Improved map and header sizing on country pages
  • Improved search layout on subpages
  • Fixed category descriptions overlapping with ‘view map’ link
  • Fixed homepage “Add to guide” button breaking out of design on mobile
  • Updated favicon and social avatars to compass
  • Created a cleaner page template without the top banner – e.g. https://civictech.guide/civic-data/
  • Fixed broken search functionality on sub-pages on mobile, and improved its design layout
  • Granted stronger edit permissions to users who have claimed their project pages
  • Added more specific subcategories for the AI section so we can follow specific technologies

August 31, 2019

  • Made site style more closely resemble Civic Hall CSS
  • Added some TICTEC presentations to their project pages
  • Fixed duplicate locations
  • Reduced blog post header buffer space to a more reasonable size

July 31, 2019

  • Added sitemap
  • Fixed padding issue on category descriptions
  • Replaced “Join Now” nav item for logged out users with “Add Project”
  • Cleaned up copy on “Claim listing” modal
  • Updated WordPress to version 5.2.2
  • Added placeholder image for listings missing a featured image
  • Imported 838 new projects – we’re now at over 3,000 entries!
  • Opened permissions to that Contributor-level users can add and edit more data, including images
  • Removed 9 extraneous data fields from listings in WordPress

June 30, 2019

  • Added page explaining How to claim your page on the Field Guide
  • Rewrote “claim your page” modal to improve the copy, and removed phone number required field
  • Added categories for Journals, Glossaries, Government trainings, Civic tech community surveys, Shows, Certifications, Circumvention tech, Surveys, Interactive Voice Response, Fintech for low-income communities, Decentralization, Whistleblowing, Direct action, Network visualizations, Civic imagination, Canvassing, Report cards, Satellites.

May 20, 2019

  • Created https://civictech.guide/new/ for a longer list of recently added entries
  • Fixed Twitter timeline embed on many entries
  • Updated homepage: we’ve hosted visitors from over 100 countries
  • Resolved issue with search autosuggestions, so that clicking category autosuggestions now go directly to the category page without requiring further action
  • Backfilled parent category hierarchies for submissions that were missing them to improve consistency of category data
  • Added project URLs to project cards in the Grid view so that users don’t need to click through to each profile. https://civictech.guide/new/, for example
  • Added feature icons to homepage to replace some of the wall of text
  • Updated Knight Foundation logo with white background for improved visibility and cropped Luminate logo to standardize sizes
  • Create country- and city-specific maps to populate geographic pages. https://civictech.guide/france/, for example
  • Added bit.ly links to track calendar downloads, removed Berlin timezone parameters from calendar URLs
  • Fixed issue with CSS caching to clean up homepage fonts and category page bullet points

April 24, 2019

  • Updated 3 months of WP theme improvements
  • Added Home navigation item to menu, along with Blog, Name generator, Adjacent fields
  • Added action buttons to civictech.guide/timeline
  • Resolved some broken Twitter embeds
  • Prototyping country-, city-, and topic-specific pages like https://civictech.guide/france/, https://civictech.guide/access-public-benefits/, https://civictech.guide/nederland/
  • Cleaned up primary nav menu so it doesn’t break
  • Added Whatsapp field for mobile-based projects
  • Removed images from submission page for faster loader time
  • Cleaned up extraneous categories
  • Divided “open data platforms” into discrete categories for portals (14) and platforms (33) and fixed images for all of them
  • Set new entries to automatically included featured images from the media library, or a default fall-back image if there is none
  • Added TICTeC presentation to the timeline page for additional context
  • Rescued ~20 listings that lost their category when they were originally imported
  • Removed character limit on project cards so that project titles no longer get truncated.

March 28, 2019

  • Fixed the raw HTML that was sending in transactional site emails, and rewrote email copy for all emails
  • Added Founded year data for over 2,000 entries and pending entries
  • Added the environment and sustainability category to the adjacent fields index
  • Fixed password recovery link not appearing in recovery emails
  • Added pages for About UsGuiding Principles, and How to use this, and added “What can I do with” to the front page with more explainer text
  • Added Civic Hall, Knight, and Luminate support logos to site footer
  • Added Civic Hall link, About Us, Guiding Principles, and What can I do with… to the primary navigation
  • Moved ‘Related entries’ recommendation engine to appear below Twitter embeds (example)
  • Resolved issue with primary navigation submenus not loading
  • Fixed issue with long URLs breaking the project card design on mobile by truncating human view of the links while retaining the link value upon clicking
  • Added categories for Artistic interventions and Government AI strategies
  • Fixed SSL certificates
  • Updated https://civictech.guide/what-can-i-do-with-the-civic-tech-field-guide/ with images and space

February 24, 2019

  • Updated Listing template to display all categories a Listing has, instead of only one category. For example, https://civictech.guide/listing/public-school/ actually belongs to ‘Graveyard’ and ‘Supporting specific public sector efforts from outside government’. Ordered these by hierarchy, with commas separating.
  • Also removed the duplicate Listing title from this breadcrumbs section, since it already appears immediately below it.
  • Distinguished Graveyard entries throughout the site with light gray background color (listing-category/graveyard/)
  • Broke News to Action tools out into their own category and fixed Media section so it’s not all under Solutions Journalism header
  • Added site to the Internet Archive

February 15, 2019

  • Added this changelog to site
  • Configured new calendar and calendar widgets (see footer area) system, replacing the buggy Jetpack widget that was intermittently synchronizing with Google Calendar.
  • Refreshed and reformatted the events in both calendars as well.
  • Added and populated “In the news” block to homepage for hot topics
  • Improved and updated the Tech and the People table of contents pages
  • Got Related entries recommendation engine working below posts, example
  • Fixed bug where Links URL spills over into main body section of Listing
  • Determined cause of a bug that was routinely breaking image filepaths

February 5, 2019

  • Improved visibility of the footer font, including the site CC license
  • Removed duplicate admin data fields in the Listing edit page to clean things up
  • Added an XML site generator to improve SEO
  • Added a live “happening now” block for key conferences and events
  • Fixed ability to use WordPress.com logins on the site
  • Profile page improvements:
  • add “Founded” year to profile
  • add “Closed” year to profile for graveyard projects we have date info for
  • Move “Language” ACF higher in the template, immediately under “Date founded” and “Date closed”
  • Corrected “Founded” line to read “Founders”
  • Changed “Parent organization” to instead read “Host organization”, and fixed the broken link where this data wasn’t appearing correctly
  • Fixing ‘Links’ section so link description text is hyperlinked
  • Added a field for postmortem links and displayed it in the “What happened” section
  • For entries where we have their Twitter information in the ACF Twitter field, it will now automatically embed their recent tweets at the bottom of the listing
  • Improved ‘Get in Touch’ section copy to:
  • Contact page
  • Open jobs
  • Upcoming events

January 25, 2019

  • Restored category descriptions and moved them to the TOP of category pages, instead of languishing at the bottom underneath listings.
  • Completed category descriptions for all Tech categories
  • Speed optimizations:
  • Optimized / defragmented WordPress database
  • Set up “lazy loading” of images, videos, iframes, etc. to drastically improve user experience of speed
  • Installed a database viewer to facilitate admins adding data quickly
  • Fixed an issue with custom fields plugin not updating
  • Removed the “tag” icon clutter on listing cards.
  • Fixed a bug where the second pages of certain categories would display all Listings, rather than displaying the second page that category’s Listings.
  • Fixed a bug where the grid view design was broken on the second page of some results.

January 22, 2019

  • Updated category pages to show 40 entries per page
  • Speed optimizations:
  1. Brought page render start from 1.7 to 1.3 seconds
  2. Brought render complete from 3.79 to 2.95 seconds
  3. minify, aggregate HTML
  4. minify, aggregate, and pre-load CSS
  5. minify, aggregate Javascript
  6. remove WordPress cruft
  7. Combine and load fonts asynchronously with webfont.js
  8. Disabled Gravatar
  9. Re-hosted testimonial images locally to cache

January 15, 2019

  • You can now view and click the links for each entry from their category pages, so you don’t have to click through to individual page profiles first. (example)
  • The search bar in the header no longer performs its silly entrance animation
  • Removed duplicate search bar on Category pages so you can see the listings faster
  • Profile pages now display section and other headings only if the data exist, making for cleaner profile pages
  • Category pages now display only the category title, like “Participatory budgeting”, instead of “Results for Participatory budgeting Listings”.
  • Fixed a bug where some Listings displayed a second Website URL, “h”, underneath the first URL.
  • We’ve updated the Civic Tech Graveyard with a more complete collection, and brought it more information to the profiles from previous reporting (and will continue adding to it).
  • We’re adding sub-categories for political social networkschat apps and bots, and campaign call tools (with entries for these on the way).
  • We’ve cross-posted the problem with impact measurement and civic tech graveyard pieces on the site
  • Updated the theme

January 1, 2019

  1. improved styling of the ‘Explore the Guide’ Table of Contents on the homepage
  2. Updated the theme