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Rebuilding ExpressionEngine, Consistently Simplified

In the last installment we learned how I approached the first battle with that old beast ExpressionEngine 2. Today I want to discuss how I took on the task of simplification through consistency.


Consistency in UI design is often one of the first things to be re-prioritized when deadlines start breathing down our necks; the cold steel of their sickles pressing against your skin, beads of sweat rolling down our furrowed brows.

For ExpressionEngine 3, I wanted UI consistency to be

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ExpressionEngine 3.0 Public Preview, Beta 4

The fourth release of ExpressionEngine 3.0 Public Beta is here. For those of you following along at home, here’s what you need to know:

Beta 4 - released September 25, 2015

  • 70 Commits
  • 236 files have changed
  • 2,382 new lines of code and 1,829 deletions.

There were 29 notable changes:

  • Improved behavior of entry filtering in Relationship fields on the publish form.
  • Model properties can now be checked for emptiness with empty().
  • A custom database port can be specified in the database

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Rebuilding ExpressionEngine, Making Modern, Keeping Familiar

Last time I gave an overview of our goals for rebuilding ExpressionEngine’s CP. Today I want to drill a little deeper on the concepts of modernization and maintaining familiarity.

In UX design, it’s important to maintain a link to the past when redesigning a project like ExpressionEngine, while trying to clean up the UI to create a smoother, yet familiar work flow. This redesign is only the first baby step towards the future of ExpressionEngine. I have nearly one million things I still want to

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ExpressionEngine 3.0 Public Preview, Beta 3

Here is a brief update on the ExpressionEngine 3.0 Public Beta, now in its 3rd release.

Beta 3 - released September 18, 2015

  • 60 Commits
  • 100 files changed
  • 750 new lines of code and 2,897 deletions

There were 17 notable changes:

  • Relationships are hard, but finding the right one isn’t now that you can search ​all​ of them, not just the ones loaded into your publish page.
  • The Entry Manager has live filtering, and you can now bookmark the results directly.
  • Tables generated with the Table

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Rebuilding ExpressionEngine, first blood

When I joined EllisLab, ExpressionEngine had been a product for more than seven years. And in that time ExpressioneEngine never had a professional in-house designer to oversee the creation, and iteration of the flagship’s control panel. Unfortunately this inadvertently led ExpressionEngine to a place where the software, while powerful, flexible, and extensible was harder to learn, use, and far more inconsistent in its UI than it should have been.

The day I sat down to begin work on the new

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Public Preview Status Update for 3.0.0-beta.2

Here is a brief status update on the ExpressionEngine 3.0 Public Beta, now in its 2nd release.

Beta 2 - released September 11, 2015

  • 114 commits
  • 83 changed files
  • 1,178 new lines of code and 885 deletions.
  • 51 issues addressed:
    • Fixed a bug where Relationships were not saved on new entries.
    • Fixed a bug (#21095) where the post_save() fieldtype method was not being called on new entry submissions.
    • Fixed a bug (#21090) where the submit buttons on the template creation form performed the wrong

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ExpressionEngine Conference, Special Edition: October 15

A few months ago, the great folks who run the ExpressionEngine Conference asked us if we would participate in a special one-day event focusing on ExpressionEngine 3.0. We were more than happy to, and with the venue they are providing along the River Walk in San Antonio, how could we say no?

Here are the talks our team has planned:

  • Keynote Address: It took foundational changes to both EllisLab and ExpressionEngine to get to version 3.0. I’ll share what this new release brings and where

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ExpressionEngine 3.0 Enters Public Beta

ExpressionEngine 3.0 Public Beta is available today, and we are thrilled to finally share it with you.

Everyone who has a valid ExpressionEngine license on their EllisLab.com account is invited to participate in the Public Beta and kick the tires. For web developers who are not in our Developer Preview, it is a great opportunity to get your add-ons ready before the final release. As this is pre-release software, it should not be used on production sites or by the faint of heart.

Full details

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New Book: The Guide to ExpressionEngine Development

ExpressionEngine veteran and personality behind devot:ee Ryan Masuga has released a new ExpressionEngine book: The Guide to ExpressionEngine Development. This book is unique from most other ExpressionEngine-related education in that it focuses on the project environment, development practices specific to ExpressionEngine, security, and other processes.

I was able to provide a tech review of the book and was really impressed, which led to me asking Ryan if I could write a foreword, which I’ve

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Developer Preview Status Update for 3.0.0-dp.9

Here is a brief status update on the Developer Preview (DP), now in its 9th release.

DP9 - released August 28, 2015

  • 41 external-facing issues addressed
  • 413 commits
  • 195 changed files
  • 9,799 new lines of code and 6,097 deletions.

Today’s build introduces the Spam module, a new way to fight spam from your front-end forms that learns and improves its algorithms as it’s used. We’ve also changed the license settings screen to take a license file rather than a number. The build also fixes many

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