[Aug-Sept 2013] Piwik 2.0 Development Update!
This Development Update is the first in a new series of posts we’ll be writing to keep you, our loyal users, informed of our efforts. We hope these updates keep you excited about Piwik’s future, and if you’re a developer, we hope they inspire and challenge you to accomplish more yourself!
Despite this being our first update, it will probably be one of our biggest. We’ve gotten a lot done as we race towards the Piwik 2.0 release! Just see for yourself:
What we’ve accomplished
Piwik now supports theming, a feature that was requested often in the past. Because of our switch to the Twig template engine and other major code changes it is now possible to change the way Piwik looks. Additionally, developers can use the dynamic stylesheet language LESS, instead of CSS. Piwik will automatically transform the LESS code into CSS.
Piwik 2.0 will ship with a new dark theme called PleineLune (french for Full Moon) that makes use of the new theming feature. Another theme with a left-aligned menu was created during the Piwik Meetup in Paris. Both of these themes were created by Thomas Zilliox, a very talented designer and CSS expert.
PHP 5.3 Namespaces
For Piwik 2.0 we decided to make use of namespaces, a feature introduced in PHP 5.3. The usage of namespaces makes our code more readable and allows us to better modularize the platform. This is in part why we are raising the required minimum PHP version to 5.3 for Piwik 2.0. (Remember to update your server!)
Translations in JSON
All translations are now stored in JSON files which makes storing translations in Piwik a lot cleaner that the giant PHP array we previously used.
We now use UI tests to make sure that changes to the code don’t break the UI. UI tests use PhantomJS and CutyCapt and are automatically executed on Travis CI. Whenever an integration test fails the script produces a screenshot diff that shows the difference. Learn more.
AnonymizeIP supports IPv6
The AnonymizeIP plugin now masks IPv6 addresses. The concept of the config option ‘ip_address_mask_length’ has now changed to reflect the level of masking that should be applied to the IP. With a masking level of 1 Piwik will mask the last octet of an IPv4 address and the last 80 bits of an IPv6 address.
All Websites Dashboard usable with 20,000+ Websites
The All Websites Dashboard is now usable even if you track many thousands of websites in your Piwik instance. We rewrote parts of the archiving process in order to make this possible. Making Piwik fast and memory efficient is a constant concern for core developers.
Plugins can now add new Visualizations
Piwik Plugins and Themes can now create new visualizations for your report data. They can also specify their own ViewDataTable footer icons or modify existing ones. This will allow plugin developers to create new ways for you to view your data, customize existing reports so they look great in new visualizations and provide extra analytics functionality accessible in each of your reports.
The Piwik Marketplace is a new platform developers can use to publish their plugins and themes so all Piwik users can easily access them. The marketplace is hosted at plugins.piwik.org and is currently in an early development state, but we’re already able to host plugins!
Developers can easily publish their plugins by adding a commit hook to their Github repositories. Every time you push a new tag, the marketplace will make a new version of your plugin available. The marketplace will provide a centralized platform to search for plugins and also provide statistics on plugin usage.
Install Plugins and Themes in one click from within Piwik
Piwik has offered since the beginning the much-loved “one click update” feature. We are bringing the same functionnality to the Marketplace: you will be able to install Plugins and Themes in one click directly within the Piwik interface! Similarly to WordPress or Firefox, Piwik will let you extend the functionnality of your analytics platform.
In Piwik 2.0 you will be able to install plugins and themes from the marketplace. And, if you’re so inclined, you will be able to create and host your own plugins/themes on the marketplace so everyone can use them. This is by far the accomplishment we are most excited by… the possibilities it opens up for Piwik’s future are truly unlimited. We hope you share our excitement!
Au revoir, until next time!
PS: our mission is to liberate web analytics; thank you for sharing the word about Piwik 2.0!