Team Rosters 4.5

Team Rosters version 4.5 is now available on wordpress.org. This release includes a number of new features and several bug fixes. The significant enhancements include:

A complete summary of changes is available on this man page and in the plugin’s readme.txt file. The following video provides a summary of the color and data field settings for the [mstw-roster-table-2] shortcode.

What’s next? Several upgrades and clean-up chores are on the list:

  • Upgrading the Data Fields and Columns settings to allow columns to be re-positioned.
  • Investigate adding a year for each roster, and allowing the capability to move a team’s players from one year’s roster to the next year, perhaps updating the applicable information like class and experience and ‘graduating’ seniors.
  • Add the recently added fields like ‘long position’ and ‘long class’ to the CSV import feature and re-test.
  • Clean up the player photo size mess. I’m not settled on what to do here, but the player photos may be locked in at 125×125 px. (Scaling appropriately when resizing windows. I recommend using this size until this gets sorted out.

If you have other requests now is the time to send them.

MSTW Bracket Builder Version 1.3

Version 1.3 of the MSTW Bracket Builder Free and Premium plugins is now available. Users of the free version should have been notified in their Admin Dashboard about the upgrade on WordPress.org. Users of the premium version may now download it from the MSTW Store (www.shoalsummitsolutions.com -> Store -> All My Downloads). If version 1.2 is working great for you, there’s no pressing reason to download this version. You can read more about why it is (or will soon be) necessary in this post.

New Versions of MSTW Bracket Builder

The following gets a bit ‘computer-nerdy’, so cutting to the chase, if your version the plugin is working for you, there’s no need to upgrade MSTW Bracket Builder or MSTW Bracket Builder Premium right now. The functional upgrades in these releases are minimal, and you probably don’t need them.

New versions of MSTW Bracket Builder (1.3) and MSTW Bracket Builder Premium (v1.3) will be released this week. These versions were created because PHP (a programming language that WordPress depends on) depreciated the each( ) function, which unfortunately these plugins use in critical ways. How critical? You could not create tournaments without it.

This may be too much information, so feel free to stop reading, but this will affect all WordPress sites in the not too distant future. So …

WordPress currently recommends PHP 7.4. However, security support for PHP 7.4 is ending this month (Nov 2022). So hosting providers will likely be moving to PHP 8.0 in the not too distant future. The good news is that WordPress itself is already compatible with PHP 8.0.

PHP 8.0 is a major version update with a large number of changes that break backwards compatibility, and many features that were deprecated within the PHP 7.x feature releases have been officially removed. So some plugins, my guess is more than a few, will break when websites [hosting providers] upgrade to PHP 8.0. Actually PHP 8.1 is already released. That’s how this all got started with MSTW Bracket Builder. I’m wading through the rest of the MSTW plugins right now.

If you are running plugins that are critical to your site, you might want to research those plugins’ status with regard to PHP 8.0.

BTW, thanks very much to the PHP 8.0 “early adopters” who brought this issue to my attention. You know who you are! While, I may have been cursing you when the plugin code was laying in pieces and everything was broken (JK), I appreciate you because I have been ignoring this issue for far too long.

MSTW Team Rosters 4.4

MSTW Team Rosters 4.4 will be released soon. It contains three new features:

  • The new [mstw-tr-roster-2] shortcode (display shown below).
  • Added a new “long format” player position (shown in the shortcode display below)
  • Worked on improved responsiveness of this page, and re-worked the player profile/bio page display to greatly improve its responsiveness.

The man page for the shortcode is available here.

A quick introduction to the [mstw-tr-roster-2] shortcode:

Team Rosters 4.3

An update to Team Rosters 4.3 should have appeared in your admin panel. It has two new features:

  • The Settings link from the plugins page now works (most people don’t use this, but it’s there and can be convenient)
  • A dropdown menu of all players on a selected team appears on the player bio page for all players on that team

If you don’t particularly need these features, there’s no real need to update.

New Features in the Next Release

New features are planned for future releases. The list of features has not been finalized for any version. Some requests are:

  • A dropdown menu to switch between teams in the roster table and gallery views, much like the new dropdown on the single player bio page
  • Increases control/flexibility of the data fields displayed in the roster table, gallery, and single player bio views
  • Upgraded views of roster tables
  • Improved control of the size of player photos ( a feature that definitely has some issues right now)
  • Addition of a year (season) to each roster, so one can build an organized history of a team’s rosters

If you have something you would like to see in a future release of Team Rosters, now is the time to send them to me via e-mail.

Support for MSTW Schedules & Scoreboards

Support for the MSTW Schedules & Scoreboards plugin is being phased out. The plugin will continue to be maintained on the wordpress.org plugin site in support of legacy users, all new users should go with the MSTW League Manager plugin, which is very actively maintained. Legacy users of Schedules & Scoreboards should also consider migration to League Manager for improved features and support.

It is still available on the WordPress.org site, and the documentation will be available on this site. So it can still be used, and it will work with future versions of WordPress for some time. If there are bugs, I will look into them. However, the plugin will not be enhanced in any way.

While the name might sound like overkill for small, simple sites, it really isn’t. While League Manager provides more features and advanced features for larger, regional sites, it can also be used just like Schedules & Scoreboards for simpler sites without the need for advanced features. So there is really no need to use MSTW Schedules & Scoreboards or continue to support it (at the expense of the other MSTW plugins).

MSTW League Manager & Add-ons 2.10

Version 2.10 of MSTW League Manager and League Manager Add-ons has been released.

What’s New

The primary new functionality is improved handling of Overtime Games when Standings are being auto-calculated using MTW League Manager Add-ons. In fact, until this version, there was no way to indicate that a game ended in overtime so the auto-fill of standings could process it correctly.

Several new videos are available on League Manager, including how to handle overtime games with and without the MSTW League Manager plugin. Visit shoalsummitsolutions.com to view them.

Other than that, you can read about the minor changes in the Change Logs in the readme files or on the website – MSTW League Manager Change Log or MSTW League Manager Add-ons Change Log.

New Video Tutorials

Installing MSTW League Manager Add-ons

MSTW Premium Plugins are now easier to update because recent versions of the plugins are always available on the shoalsummitsolutions.com website under Store -> My Plugins. This video shows how to get the premium plugins without digging out the link in your purchase confirmation e-mail.

Overtime Game Management with League Manager

Prior to Version 2.10, the only way to accurately display standings tables was to manually update a league’s records. This video shows a few tricks that may come in handy.

Overtime Game Management with League Manager Add-ons

Prior to Version 2.10, there was no way to indicate that a game was an overtime game, so the Auto-fill standings feature in MSTW League Manager Add-ons could accurately compute points in standings. Now you can specify overtime games, but there are still some subtleties. Should overtime wins be shown simply as wins? Or should they be shown in as overtime wins? What about overtime loses? This video shows how to deal with some of these issues.

League Manager Admin Roles

MSTW Admin Roles for team, school, and league admins were introduced in League Manager Add-ons version 2.9, and improved in version 2.10. This video shows how these roles are set up so the site maintenance responsibilities can be distributed across trusted users.

Head-to-Head Results as a Tiebreaker

Head-to-head results can not be selected as a tie-breaker in the Standings Settings, because three and four way head-to-head tiebreakers become pretty gnarly pretty quickly. However, this video discusses some ways to create head-to-head tiebreakers.

Venue Groups

Venue groups have been round for a long time. This video shows how they provide the potential for better organization and display of venues.

MSTW League Manager 2.9 Released

MSTW League Manager and MSTW League Manager Add-ons plugins have been released. The biggest new features are new League Manger administrator roles, which allow distribution of the admin workload, and enhanced management of overtime games.

New Admin Roles

The three new admin roles – team, school, and league admins – allow WordPress site administrators to distribute site maintenance duties, specifically the maintenance of games and schedules, across a controlled user base. Check out this video to learn more about this new capability.

Enhanced Support for Overtime Games

In previous versions of the MSTW League Manager plugin, overtime games and their impact on league standings could be managed adequately using team records, that is, NOT using the standing auto-fill capability in MSTW League Manager Add-ons. Enhancements to LM Add-ons allow overtime games to be included in the points calculations for league standings. Check out these videos to learn more about managing overtime games. Without the Add-ons. With the Add-ons (and auto-fill standings.)

How to access the new versions

The versions of MSTW League Manager and MSTW League Manager Add-ons on your site should always match. MSTW League Manager may be updated from your admin dashboard. If you have purchased the MSTW LM Add-ons plugin, you may download version 2.9 from the shoalsummitsolutions.com website. Go the the Store on the top menu, and select “My Downloads” to download new version.

Multi-Team Schedules with Custom Styling

This video demonstrates one use of the Multi-Team Schedule shortcode which was introduced in MSTW League Manager version 2.7, and improved in version 2.8. It can be very useful in league websites.

Maybe more importantly, the video cantors through the very important concept of WordPress child themes to explain why the custom stylesheets for most MSTW plugins are placed where they are (not in the plugin). Then it shows how to create some pretty cool styling for one instance of the plugin.

See the plug-in instance shown in the video at https://dev.shoalsummitsolutions.com/lm-multi-team-schedules/ .

Learn more about WordPress Child Themes at https://developer.wordpress.org/themes/advanced-topics/child-themes/.