I'm new, have questions, need direction (but not spoon feeding)
Okay, this is going to be a somewhat long post so I apologize but I have a lot of questions. I have a site that is currently running SMF that I need to perform migration/update/major surgery on. I won't go into all the issues I have with SMF but suffice it to say a good idea started it up and somehow SMF painted itself into a corner and the project has approached near stagnation. I started using SMF because of the bombastic nature of the vbulletin and phpbb interfaces.
Me, I'm a ex OLTP developer turned system admin in the 1980's and from there I wrote OS utility code for OpenVMS. For the past 4+ year I have been a redhat admin. I don't have the time to learn php though I wish I did. So here is what I am looking to do. I have done a few drupal sites and am pretty comfortable there. I initially was looking to do a drupal commons or totem implementation with a migrated forum using the drupal advanced forum module. While I like drupal a lot, the forum software “just isn't there” yet and may not be for quite some time.
I also toyed with the orchid module for drupal, but it's not doing exactly what I want it to. It is essentially dropping the forum in an iframe-like manner. My desire was to have it use and API-like interface and integrate the navigation into the drupal structure via translations through a common means. That of course would be a fairly extensive piece of software. But it would then be portable to WP, Joomla and a host of others. The CSS translations among a host of other things could be problematic though.
Enter Vanilla. I had seen Vanilla mentioned a lot over in the drupal community so I wandered over quite a while ago. At the time it wasn't suitable for what I needed for another project. Well, for what I have going now it most definitely is so grabbed a copy and stuck it on one of the servers at the house and have been playing with it for a couple days. I like a lot of what I have seen the interface and want to pursue it to see if it's a feasible solution for me.
So here's my laundry list of items and questions I want to put together. I don't know if these things exist.
Groups with permissioning systems where permissions can be creator defined. I haven't seen anything like that yet in Vanilla) The ultimate goal of this is to have user created maintained microcosm's
Event Calendars that can be global or restricted to specific groups confined.
Vanilla has some great plugins for embedding multimedia that from my untrained eye appear to have been pretty well thought out. Is there a plugin or app that will allow links to be converted to facebook style links with the fancy images in the links. Why I like that I don't know, but I do. To me it visually breaks things up and created visual hot spots for members.
I saw a post where someone was looking at developing a mollom plugin. That would be awesome! I have carved out a lot of address space because of spam. (for what it's worth I would love to see a plugin that would use a registry of sorts to prevent registration/posting from places like 1and1, rackspace or whatever hosting provider you want to name) Like everyone else I see SPAM of all kinds and it requires vigilance.
Responsive theming. Yeah, the world is going mobile and we all have to adapt. Are there any plans to make Vanilla tablet and phone friendly? Anymore this is becoming a must have for me and probably a lot of people that don't have the skill set to develop this kind of stuff.
So anyhow what is the easiest way to port an SMF installation into Vanilla? So far I see lots of promise for me and kudos to the architect/developers for not sticking to the typical forum software mentality.
If I posted this in an inappropriate place, I'm sorry. I'll get out my nomex suit now.