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Philosophers, let us improve!

 
 
Reply Thu 10 Jun, 2010 07:23 pm
This discussion will be focused on compiling improvements we as a community would like to see on this forum. Before submitting, please be aware that Robert obviously has a lot on his plate right now, and understand that the suggestions here may not be realized for quite some time. So, be patient.

That said, it won't hurt to provide Robert some ideas.

Here are mine regarding general forum usage:

- Add a "quote" button. As of the moment, there is only a "reply" button. And, when someone is replied to, the content of the post you are replying to does not appear in the reply - all that appears is "@Whoeveryourespondto". This can be troublesome because often people only want to respond to parts of specific posts.

- Have the "BBCode Editor" enabled automatically. Right now, for new users, opening the BBCode Editor is confusing. For those who don't know what the BBCode Editor is, it is the bar that contains the bold, italicize, underline, quote, hyperlink insertion, etc. links at the top of the reply box. Right now, to enable this bar, you have to click on the small 3-font link that says "Open BBCode Editor". And, as an experienced user, it even took me a while to find.

- Add a "Quick Reply" box at the bottom of threads. This is a popular feature because not everyone wants to spend the time going to another page to create a post.

- Allow posts to be edited more than once. As far as I understand things right now posts can only be edited once, and then the "Edit" button simply disappears. This can be troublesome for obvious reasons. (After some testing I may be wrong about this one, or it could just be a bug on my end)

I'll post more after some thinking!

Once again, please be respectful of Robert's position, and be realistic with your suggestions. Moreover, know that these suggestions will not be realized overnight and that this is a tough time for everyone - Robert especially.

Thanks, and hello philosophy forum!
 
Robert Gentel
 
  2  
Reply Thu 10 Jun, 2010 07:28 pm
@Zetherin,
The first time you open the bbcode editor and post it should stay that way, basically it stays however you last left it. And there is a a preference for the quote button as well.

Our reasoning is that non-forum users are less intimidated by hiding the advanced controls so they are hidden by default. But we had intended to bring you guys, mostly forum regulars, over with the controls enabled by default.

But thanks for the reminder, we just made both (bbcode bar, quote button) visible by default for all of you. Can any of you who didn't have them visible confirm that you can see it?
0 Replies
 
roger
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Jun, 2010 07:32 pm
@Zetherin,
Zetherin wrote:


- Add a "quote" button. As of the moment, there is only a "reply" button. And, when someone is replied to, the content of the post you are replying to does not appear in the reply - all that appears is "@Whoeveryourespondto". This can be troublesome because often people only want to respond to parts of specific posts.



What on earth would you do with a quote button?

I do think a quick reply button would be an improvement. Robert eliminated it a few years ago to discourage the pointless little one line answers. Since it didn't eliminate anything, we might as well have the convenience.
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Jun, 2010 07:36 pm
@Zetherin,
I guess I'm being invasive, and so will stop... after these points.

No, there is a quote button.

I'll surmise preferences could be highlighted when one signs in - but let me just guess the confusion/chaos. But maybe this could be adjusted.

Reply is a quick reply box - it is sloppily used by most of us, sometimes to the poster very specifically, sometimes not specifically but in camaraderie, and sometimes just answering the thread.

Editing, as I understand, takes up speed from the site. We used to have endless editing, and it was problematic for the site.
Zetherin
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Jun, 2010 07:37 pm
@roger,
roger wrote:
What on earth would you do with a quote button?


Right now, I only wanted to respond to your question. So this is what I had to do:

1.) Click "Reply" on your post.
2.) Copy and paste the question I wanted to respond to.
3.) Highlight the question, and then, using the BBCode Editor, click the quote macro.
4.) Lastly, in the first part of the code I had to type "=roger" so that it read "Roger wrote:"

With a quote button, your response would automatically be placed in my respond box, with the quote coding and your name already inserted, thus eliminating steps 2-4.

Or, is there a shortcut I'm not seeing?
Robert Gentel
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Jun, 2010 07:38 pm
@Zetherin,
Zetherin wrote:
Add a "Quick Reply" box at the bottom of threads. This is a popular feature because not everyone wants to spend the time going to another page to create a post.


We will probably do something similar with a modal overlay, where you click the button and the reply form overlays the page till you are done. Basically, it gets what you want, reply without a pageload.

Quote:
Allow posts to be edited more than once. As far as I understand things right now posts can only be edited once, and then the "Edit" button simply disappears. This can be troublesome for obvious reasons. (After some testing I may be wrong about this one, or it could just be a bug on my end)


You can edit more than once, but there is a time limit. This one's a balance issue, so help me get it (I know it needs to be longer, how long is key).

On philforum I remember complaints about people materially editing posts after they have been replied to, and there's opportunity for clear malice. In addition, with ability to edit forever moderators would have to monitor content forever (otherwise I can edit in spam links later for example).

In short, there has to be some kind of limit, and sure, it can be longer than what it is now. What are your thoughts? Where should the line be? A lot of sites give you a few minutes, I'm thinking the absolute maximum should be something like half an hour and we only do 5.

My best guess at a reasonable improvement would be 300% of our current limit, at 15 minutes. What do you think?
0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Jun, 2010 07:39 pm
@Zetherin,
First of all, if you click on the top of your reply, you'll see Roger's post. As can anyone else.
Robert Gentel
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Jun, 2010 07:41 pm
@Zetherin,
Zetherin wrote:
Or, is there a shortcut I'm not seeing?


The quote button was a preference, that had to be turned on. Most regulars here do so then assume it's default.

We've made it default for all philforum folk, so in effect you now have the requested button.
Zetherin
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Jun, 2010 07:42 pm
@ossobuco,
Yes, but having his text in my response is what I would want to see. This way people can see what I'm responding to, just from reading my post.

Where is the quote button you say I'm missing? Sorry, I must have missed it - haven't spent as much time on the site yet.
Zetherin
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Jun, 2010 07:42 pm
@Robert Gentel,
I do not see a quote button. Where is it located?
roger
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Jun, 2010 07:42 pm
@Zetherin,
I was trying to be funny, and you took me seriously. I used the quote button to reply to you, and eliminated everything within the quote that I wasn't responding to. In other words, we have it, and it works exactly like you want it to.
Zetherin
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Jun, 2010 07:43 pm
@roger,
Oh, I'm sorry. I wouldn't have known you were joking because I do not have a quote button Smile

(I thought you quoted me according to the steps I provided)
0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Jun, 2010 07:44 pm
@Zetherin,
Robert is here, I'll stop butting in. (welcome)
roger
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Jun, 2010 07:44 pm
@Zetherin,
You may have to scroll to the bottom of the page and select "My Preferences" to enable the quote button.
Zetherin
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Jun, 2010 07:45 pm
@ossobuco,
Why would you be butting in? This discussion is for everyone, not just Robert. Please, contribute as you please!
0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Jun, 2010 07:45 pm
@roger,
Aha, bingo. But Robert just made all the philforum folks quote enabled.
0 Replies
 
Zetherin
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Jun, 2010 07:46 pm
@roger,
Thank you, roger! That worked!

Robert, it's not automatic for us philosophy forum users, so you know.
Robert Gentel
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Jun, 2010 07:46 pm
@Zetherin,
I just tested it, appears you'll have to log out and back in to see it (or go to your preferences page and set it) but all the philforum folks who login from now on will see your suggestions:

1) they will have the bbcode toolbar expanded by default.
2) they will see a quote button next to the reply buttons.
roger
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Jun, 2010 07:47 pm
@ossobuco,
Reply isn't quite like "Quick Reply". With quick reply you don't get all the editing options, and you don't have to work the back arrow multiple times to return to the thread. We actually had this almost from the beginning. Then it was eliminated.
Zetherin
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Jun, 2010 07:47 pm
@Robert Gentel,
Thanks, Robert, that's great!
 

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