Member subscribing added to profiles

September 22nd, 2013

We hope you’ve been finding the new member profiles useful! Many thanks to those who provided feedback and reported bugs!

With the kinks now worked out, we’ve turned our attention to adding features and functionality to the profiles. The first major addition is ‘member subscribing’ — you can now subscribe to a member, just like you would subscribe to a thread or story. :)

This new functionality brings about several changes that may have you scratching your head without some explanation…

1. ‘Buddies’ are now mutually-subscribed members
Previously, buddy status was fairly inconsequential — you could add anyone to your buddy list without much effect. With the new system, however, a buddy relationship is automatically established when two members are subscribed to each other. Buddies can no longer be manually added; they only come from mutual subscriptions.

2. Old buddies have been converted into subscriptions
Most traders used the old buddy system to keep track of certain members. Since subscribing to a member has a similar intention, all old buddies have been converted into subscriptions to initially populate the new system. If any of your old buddies also had you on their buddy list, they will remain your buddy because the conversions will result in a mutual subscription (which results in a buddy relationship, as discussed above). The email alert for converted subscriptions was set to ‘None’, so you won’t receive email alerts from these subscriptions unless you change the settings.

3. Vouching was separated from the Network block
You’ll notice the Network block now lists ‘Buddies’, ‘Subscribers’, ‘Subscriptions’, and ‘Ignored’. The ‘Vouchers’ and ‘Vouched For’ sections have been moved to a separate block below the Network block. The motivation for doing this can’t be explained without shedding some light on our future plans. In short, vouching will be phased out in the future, and replaced with a system that’s based on the number of subscribers a member has. Separating vouchers from the Network block will make for a cleaner transition to the new system in the future.

4. Vouched-for members have been added as subscriptions
Anyone you previously vouched for has been added as a subscription. Since vouching will eventually be phased out, as discussed above, we want to carry the spirit of historic vouchers to the new subscription system. By duplicating your vouch as a subscription, the spirit of the vouch is not lost and will be carried into the coming subscription-based system that will replace the vouching system. To illustrate, a member who had 50 vouchers in the past will now have 50 subscribers, so when the vouching system is replaced they will still be highly “ranked.”

While the current state of member subscribing is transitional, you should find the new functionality very useful for keeping track of content produced by traders you respect. Gone are the days of visiting countless profiles to see what traders are doing — it’s now all in one place and easy to manage. :)

If you’re confused about any of the changes or have feedback, please comment or contact us. We carefully consider all feedback!

Posted by Michael, Forex Factory Product Developer

New member profiles coming soon

August 15th, 2013

Over the next several months we’re going to be changing what it means to be a Forex Factory member. All aspects of membership will be modernized; however, the focus is on content discovery, not “social.” It’s about making it easy to find and track content on Forex Factory, so you get the best information in the shortest amount of time.

The first phase of this initiative, a redesign of the member profile pages, is coming next week. While there’s only a few new features, this phase will usher in a completely new interface for member profiles, the private messaging system, subscriptions, and all member settings. This interface will provide the foundation for the various features and functionality planned for the future.

There are two things the new profiles will make public which are not currently public: your time zone and ignore list. If you don’t want your ignore list to be known publicly, please delete all entries. If you don’t want your time zone to be known publicly, please enable ‘Invisible Mode’ in your user options. While we hesitate to bring new information public, we’re compelled by the fact that it’s quite useful to know who a member is ignoring and what time zone they’re using.

The new profiles include an ‘Activity’ section that makes it much easier to see what members are doing in terms of posting in the Forums and News, posting on profiles, subscribing to threads and stories, vouching, buddy adding, ignoring, and creating Trade Explorers. Except for subscribing, all of the Activity information is already publicly available, it’s just time-consuming to find. And while subscriptions will be newly-public information, it won’t be shown historically. Only subscriptions made after the new profiles launch will be displayed publicly.

For privacy reasons, Activity will only include historical actions that were easily tracked on the old profiles. For example, Activity will historically show posts you made in the Forums and News, because they’ve always been easy to track via the search functionality. On the other hand, Activity will not historically show when you added a member to your buddy list, as that information wasn’t easily obtained on the old profiles. Buddy adding will only be tracked on a go-forward basis.

The new profiles also includes a ‘Notifications’ section, which informs you about other members’ actions that relate to you. For instance, you’ll get a notification when your post is quoted, or when someone adds you to their buddy list. Keep in mind that other members will also be notified when your action relates to them (although reversing an action within an hour will delete the notification).

While these changes may take some getting used to, we’re confident that you’ll prefer the new profile design once you see the vast amounts of insight it brings. If you have any concerns or questions, please contact us and we’ll be happy to help.

Posted by Michael, Forex Factory Product Developer

Sorry for the downtime!

June 28th, 2013

If you tried to access the site in the past 24 hours you probably experienced broken applications and intermittent downtime. We’re extremely sorry for the problems! Reliability is one of the primary objectives at Forex Factory, and we fell way short here.

As for the cause, we were upgrading a load balancer and it set off an unbelievable string of problems for our internal network. The root cause was so obscure that it took our development team, along with several Rackspace engineers, working 20 hours straight to identify. It ended up being the longest non-hacker-related downtime we’ve experienced in over seven years. Sigh.

You can be sure we’ll be working hard to improve our reliability in the future. We learned a lot from this experience and will use it to make us better.

Thank you for your patience and understanding.

Posted by Scot, Forex Factory Senior Developer

Forums redesigned

May 29th, 2013

Over the past few months you may have noticed the Forums undergoing an extensive interface redesign. This week we rolled out the last of the major upgrades. :)

There were hundreds of changes made, and together they result in a product that’s simpler, faster to navigate, and more visually focused on content. Enhancements like the new thread pagination represent a breakthrough in navigation speed, and improvements like the new file uploading sequence, which turned a clunky 7-click process into a snappy 3-click process, make interfacing with the site much easier.

Another notable upgrade was the implementation of a new post editor, which will likely be celebrated by Chrome users since the old editor couldn’t visually display BB code. And if you’ve ever found it difficult to browse a thread’s attachments, you’re going to like the new tabulated attachment display.

We hope you like the new design! If you encounter any bugs or have feedback, we’d love to hear from you — please comment or contact us.

Posted by Scot, Forex Factory Senior Developer

A fresh face for the new year

December 31st, 2012

We’ve completed the rollout of Forex Factory’s new front-end. :)

It’s a lot more than a facelift! The new front-end utilizes the latest web technologies to load the site faster and make it more consistent across browsers and devices.

While the functionality of the site remains mostly unchanged, the design introduces a new “sticky” navigation that consistently keeps all FF products just one click away. The navigation also employs a wider layout to tap into muscle-memory, thereby reducing the amount of effort needed to get around the site.

Forget how the site used to look? Here’s a screen capture right before the new front-end launched:

We’ve already received some great feedback — thank you very much! We’re working hard to improve on issues that have been brought to our attention, and you can expect to see constant improvements in the coming weeks.

Like something? Something bothering you? Let us know in the comments or by contacting us. We carefully consider all feedback!

Thanks for helping to make 2012 another great year for Forex Factory! Best of luck in the new year! :)

Posted by Sidney, Forex Factory Director of Marketing

New FF logo; new front-end to follow

November 28th, 2012

Behold! Forex Factory has a new logo! :)

We stuck to our roots with a factory shape, but the new logo bears precision and meaningfulness that better represent Forex Factory’s ideals and design approach.

The old logo served us well. It was a simple logo, proudly guarding over the site for almost nine years. In 2005, its shape was used as an icon to convey the expected market impact of calendar events ( ) — a pioneering feature that would later become ubiquitous in the financial world.

In 2011, the logo mark was again used to communicate market impact in an innovative way — this time signifying the actual impact of breaking news stories. Through the years, after serving millions upon millions of traders, our old logo became one of the most recognizable forex-related shapes in the world.

Goodbye ole’ buddy!

The new logo is the first step in a larger design initiative. We’re currently working on a new front-end for the site that will change the way you see FF. Here’s a preview:

You won’t have to worry about re-learning Forex Factory, as the new design will leave the site’s functionality and layout virtually unchanged. The only difference will be that the site looks better, loads faster, and will be more compatible across devices.

And thus begins a new chapter in Forex Factory’s evolution. :)

Posted by Sidney, Forex Factory Director of Marketing

Aggregate positions added to Trades

June 20th, 2012

With over 3,000 Trade Explorers actively synchronizing with brokerage accounts, we can now develop some very insightful applications using the aggregate data. Our first such creation is an application called Positions. Located on the Trades page, under the Leaderboard, Positions gives unprecedented insight into how forex traders are currently positioned in the market.

Positions only includes live accounts (no demos), and goes far beyond the traditional long-short ratio. For example, it displays ratios in terms of both traders and lots, tells you which traders are long and how many lots they’re carrying, shows you the lot-weighted average entry for all trades, and it displays historical ratios via interactive graph!

The aggregate numbers are made fully transparent by listing every trader that makes up the aggregate. For traders who have their Trade Explorers set to ‘Public,’ you can click through to their Explorer to see details about their position, and for those set to ‘Private’ or ‘Buddies,’ their positions are included in an anonymous format. Please note that traders who opt out of data aggregation (via Trade Explorer permissions) are not included in aggregate metrics or lists.

While there’s a bit of a learning curve, once you master Positions it can be a powerful tool that improves your edge in the market. If you have an idea for making it more useful, or if you run into any bugs, please let us know!

Posted by Scot, Forex Factory Senior Developer

Live spreads added to Brokers

June 4th, 2012

Traffic to the brand-new Brokers product has exceeded all expectations — we’re glad you guys like it!

We recently launched several new features that make the broker guide even better! Most notably, the spreads now update live! So not only are spreads real-time, but they now automatically update in sync with the brokers’ platforms. :)

For live spreads just check the ‘Live’ option in the top-right of the Spreads section, or use this permalink:

When spreads are live, a green flash signals the spread became more favorable to the trader (tighter), and a red flash signals it became less favorable (wider).

Another cool improvement is that you can now pare down the list of brokers by where they’re headquartered, their regulator, or who they service. You can also select specific brokers for comparison purposes — it’s all part of the Flex Box settings.

We hope you like the new features! If you have any ideas for further improvement, please comment or contact us!

Posted by Sidney, Forex Factory Director of Marketing

New product: Brokers

May 7th, 2012

We’re pleased to announce the beta-release of Brokers, a highly advanced guide to regulated forex brokers. This new product is a breakthrough in the way traders research brokers, finally combining up-to-date information, extensive detail, real-time spreads, and a versatile interface that makes it easy to sort through it all!

While all information on the broker guide is kept fresh, the spreads are real-time! All spreads are pulled from each broker’s standard live account (no demos) with mere millisecond of lag (click the icon to refresh). With the built-in sorting feature, you can even sort the brokers by the pair that you trade most!

You can learn more about the administration and design of Brokers in the ‘About Brokers’ box. We hope this new product helps you find the broker that best suits your trading! :)

Posted by Sidney, Forex Factory Director of Marketing

Get a fresh start with Trade Explorer

March 20th, 2012

With the new ‘Custom Start’ feature, you can now specify a date that your Trade Explorer begins including brokerage account history. Strategies change, styles evolve, traders become smarter — all are good reasons you might want to exclude old performance from your metrics. While traders shouldn’t forget lessons of the past, it’s a lot easier to analyze performance when irrelevant trades are excluded.

To set up a custom start date, click ‘Options’ at the top-right of your Trade Explorer, and enter a date in the ‘Custom Start’ section, as shown below.

You may have also noticed that we recently changed the graph setup on the ‘Overview’ tab. Instead of one Flash-based graph, the Trade Explorer now has four image-based graphs on the main tab. This change gives you a thorough overview of the account with just a glance, plus it loads faster because it’s no longer based on Flash technology (which was our initial motivation for changing).

The new graphs also interact with the ‘Performance’ table rows — click the small blue icon on each row to make the graphs represent only that particular period. This is a handy way to zoom in on performance for the year, month, week, or day.

Haven’t tried the Trade Explorer yet? Get started here! Or if you have feedback or ideas for improvement, we’re always glad to hear from you.

Posted by Danny, Trade Explorer Product Manager