Gravatar has yet to live up to the G (Global) in its name but it’s slowly getting there. Beau Lebens has published a few more developer resources that have been submitted to the Gravatar site including a Gravatar extension to the Yii framework, extension to the TYPO 3 CMS, and a Django custom tag.
I remember in 2009 when I asked why Gravatar was not mainstream, despite the service existing for a number of years now. It’s not as if Gravatar needs to completely replace avatar systems. It just needs to be one of the choices when configuring your avatar. I was very surprised to find out that VBulletin does not have built in support for Gravatar nor is there an extension to add support for it. I’d think that there is a benefit to using Gravatars on a forum instead of uploaded custom avatars because the images are loaded from a third party service and that means less space in the database being used by all of the uploaded avatar images.
Since the avatar system still does not have global support just yet, I was happy to read the news regarding Gravatar Profiles. This definitely gives Gravatars more oomph. I wonder if support will be added to show the most recent blog posts or other things on the Gravatar profile.
Actually, there were loads of Gravatar mods for vBulletin, coded by volunteers, but they got deleted when the new owners decided that WordPress was a threat to their business model.
With vBulletin, you’ve got to remember, all the original devs have left – Scott McVicar, now Facebook’s Open Source Developer Advocate, tweeted “So sad to see the company I helped build up screw customers over. Glad I bailed when I did” – so, the team that made the software great has been disbanded, their amazing plans completely flushed by the company, all that remains are a bunch of clueless but greedy executives who don’t understand software, don’t see the value in being interoperable with other services and only care about milking their remaining customers for every dollar they can.
It is a shame that WPTavern is not built around BuddyPress because, with vB, you’ve climbed into bed with some of the seediest guys imaginable. For anyone else trying to decide whether to take the open or the proprietary path for their website, check out The vB Truth website or this article about vBulletin at The Register.