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Don’t write bad code – rewrite it.

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First, solve the problem.
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Viruses in PHP Webquest?

Lately, we are receiving many communications from users of the NOD 32 virus who tell us that said antivirus detects a supposed virus in PHP Webquest. On the one hand, we are pleased to see that so many users are not only using the program, but also installing it on their servers, but on the other, we are concerned that they may think that we have put software into circulation on the Internet without being fully convinced that the security of its users is guaranteed. In this regard, we mean that:

A Beginner’s Guide to Learning PHP

PHP is a server-side programming language used on the Internet to create dynamic web pages. It is often combined with MySQL, a relational database server that can store the information and variables that PHP files can use. Together they can create everything from the simplest website to a complete business website, an interactive web forum, or even an online role-playing game.

Obsolescence problems and their resolution (momentary)

As many of you already know, it costs us a lot of work and some money to keep this site open, but we do it with pleasure because we believe that many users benefit from it and it is worth it to us. However, we do not have the time or resources to evolve the program, so we cannot carry out a necessary renovation of the database structure and an adaptation of the program code to the latest versions of the programming language in the which is based (PHP).

As a consequence of the above, we periodically have to change databases, which means that the WebQuests stored in the previous database are lost. In this case, to avoid this loss, we have arranged a new installation, in which the WebQuests that had been created continue to function, and the users already registered. However, new activities cannot be created at the following URL.

To create new activities, you have to use the link “Use PHPWebquest” in the block on the right, create a new user and proceed as usual. We hope that this compromise solution can be of use to you and we apologize for the inconvenience this mess may have caused you.

Greek language and future developments

We recently had the good fortune to come into contact with a Greek developer, Panagiotis Tsiotakis, who has translated PHP Webquest into the Greek language. We have added that language to the international version of PHP Webquest, bringing the number of languages ​​currently available to 11.

Panagiotis also has other projects in its portfolio related to the development of our program:

  • Add a tab for teachers visiting a webquest
  • Separate the Process and Resources tabs
  • Modify the style sheets and add some new ones

We thank Panagiotis for his work and encourage any other developer who wants to participate in the project to join him, in the assurance that his work will be very useful for the thousands of students and teachers around the world who use this program at diary.

Administrators: How to restore the Database

As you know, one of the options available to the administrator of a PHP Webquest installation is to make a backup copy of the database, which is highly recommended for obvious reasons of precaution and security. However, the restoration of this backup is not done through the administrator interface, but through PHPMyAdmin, and although it is not a difficult process, it is not the obvious one either.

Given this, a Mexican user, Jorge Álvarez , has made a wonderful interactive tutorial in which he explains in detail how to carry out the restoration of the database if unfortunately, the time comes when this task must be undertaken. He has done it with Wink, a little gem of free software, so we are especially happy with this tutorial, which demonstrates once again that you can perform professional-level tasks with free software tools. Thank you very much for your contribution, Jorge:-)

Authentication error (2)

A user of the program, José Carlos Galán, has detected and communicated to us a possible cause for the authentication error. It is that in the new user registration form, the password field only allowed 10 characters. It is possible that some users have created their account with a password of more than 10 characters and of course, when wanting to use it the system has not allowed it, since in the database the password had only 10 characters.

When programming the application, it did not occur to us to think that some user might want to use passwords longer than 10 characters, but it has indeed been shown that this is possible, so we have modified both the data entry form and the field of the database. From now on they support passwords of up to 25 characters – we imagine that will be enough – and there should be no more authentication problems.

Thank you very much for the help, José Carlos :-).

Solution to links and version 2.7

Thanks to the collaboration of the Venezuelan user Pedro ChacínWe have been able to fix the issue that some users were experiencing regarding link editing. Pedro has passed us a code that prevents the problem from occurring, both in the creation of webquest and in treasure hunts or miniquests. This is considerable work; It is not only pointing out a problem, but also the solution, and that is something very rare in this world of free software, where most of the users are always willing to point out difficulties and request new features, but practically no one puts their hands in the mass in order to find a real solution. That is why we want to especially thank Pedro for his collaboration and we count on him for new developments that we can undertake.

Between this improvement and the previous resolution of the authentication problem, we have released version 2.7, which, although it does not represent greater benefits for users, does solve the two main problems that were being presented to us.

Authentication error?

We have been receiving reports from users for some time that they create their accounts and yet the application does not let them enter. As we could not find any reason that would cause some users accounts to work correctly and others not, and we have done dozens of tests ourselves, the result of which has always been that the authentication worked perfectly, it has occurred to us to think of a possibility that we explain below:

We receive around 10 user requests on the PHP Webquest forums every day, from users who then post no messages. This has led us to think that perhaps those users ask for an account in the forums and want to enter the PHP Webquest application with the username and password of the forums. This, strange as it may seem to happen to someone, would explain all these strange situations, and today a message from a user of the Forum has confirmed to us that she did indeed want to enter PHP Webquest with the user of the support forum :-).

We ask the teachers of the courses where PHP Webquest is used as a tool to explain well to the students how to obtain an account in PHP Webquest, since authentication failures cause them great frustration and it takes us a lot of time trying to solve the problems that are caused. Thanks in advance to everyone.

PHP Webquest at the Internet Congress in the Classroom

On Thursday, June 26 at 3.30 pm we will make a presentation at the Internet Congress in the Aula, Granada headquarters, in which we will try to explain the evolution of PHP Webquest from its origins a few years ago to version 3.0, which will be released in a few months, taking advantage of the summer holidays. We will also do a demonstration of the possibilities of the new version since we already have an alpha version provided by our friends from Webs Dinámicas, developers related to the Department of Education of the Xunta de Galicia.

This presentation has been sponsored by CENATIC, National Reference Center for the Application of ICTs based on Open Sources. They intend with this presentation, and others that will be given in other Congress venues, to publicize educational software that has been created by Spanish developers and that has been placed under one of the Free Software licenses. We will do everything possible to rise to the occasion, trying to publicize what Free Software is, and encourage more people to get involved in this type of project that benefits the entire community.