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Author Topic: Have a look at the new forum  (Read 37418 times)

Offline daveshorts

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Have a look at the new forum
« on: 14/06/2006 12:29:20 »
I would appreciate it if you could have a look at the new forum design I have changed it to be fairly similar to the present design.

 If there is anything that doesn't make sense or doesn't work, it would be good to fix it now rather than when it is live.

http://www.kellaton.org.uk/forum

The only main difference to how it works is that it will only class topics that you have actually read as read, rather than posts since your last login.

It is working on a database that is about a week old, so most people should be able to log in fine.

Any posts you make will be deleted when we convert the forum over so don't put anything up that is important.

   cheers
     Dave
« Last Edit: 14/06/2006 12:29:48 by daveshorts »


 

another_someone

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Re: Have a look at the new forum
« Reply #1 on: 14/06/2006 13:35:21 »
Just had to brief look at present.

1)Minor peculiarity – when I logged on, a string of text very briefly popped up in the browser (too quick to properly note down, but looked like it may have been a hex or escaped url string), before reverting to the site.  When I did log on, I was not taken back to the page from which I came, but went to the main forum page (I was viewing my profile when I entered my logon details, and I would have expected to return to that page).

2)When viewing http://www.kellaton.org.uk/forum/index.php?topic=4188.from0#new, in the middle, I see Carolyn's weight loss details, but no message next to it – what is this doing here?

3)Not sure that removing the table border between the poster name and the posed message in any way improves the readability of the posts.

4)Very minor point, but given what I commented on in another post about not hero worshipping, to now be classified as a 'hero' member seems uncomfortable – but I'll live with it – it is, after all, just another meaningless word.

5)When you view a forum, you see the number of 'views' that a topic has received, but when you view the topic, you see the number of 'reads' the topic has received – this is inconsistent.

6)You have replaced the present FAQ with a new Help.  While this may be a very detailed description of how to navigate the site, it lacks, what to me, is the most important feature of the FAQ, the list of markup codes and smilies you can insert into the text.  Have you hidden this somewhere else?

7)When I click on 'reply with quotes', I get a momentary popup of a small browser window which then quickly disappears – what is happening here?

8)Tried out the 'report to moderator' function.  No moderators available (not surprising on a test site).  Is one line of comment really sufficient for a report – would you not wish a TEXTAREA rather than an INPUT TEXT field here.  Also, given the seriousness of this entry, would you wish the auto-submission to occur in response to a carriage return (this would not be a problem in a TEXTAREA field)?

9)Don't see anything akin the the range of search facilities we have in the present site.  I would have liked an extension of those facilities, not a withdrawal of them.

10)I like the idea of sending personal messages without exposing the email address, but the use of wild cards in the address field sounds very dangerous.  Also, I would have though allowing you to send emails to outside recipients is also very dangerous, and will probably very quickly lead to this site being blacklisted by spam blacklists.

11)Your statistics show 'Total Time Spent Online' – this seems to me to be a meaningless value, since the HTTP protocol cannot say how long someone has been on line – I can stay 'logged on' for days at a time, it does not mean that I am actually on line, or even that my PC is switched on for that length of time.

12)I cannot find any longer any site statistics – has this feature been removed?



George
« Last Edit: 15/06/2006 00:36:37 by daveshorts »
 

another_someone

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Re: Have a look at the new forum
« Reply #2 on: 14/06/2006 13:50:52 »
13)The new site, as is the case with the existing site, uses alternate background colours for each message so that one can easily identify the boundary between messages.  On the new site, some of the very long messages will break this, and you find the background colour changes, possibly several times, within a single message.  Have a look at the message from Ariel at http://www.kellaton.org.uk/forum/index.php?topic=3633.0, or from Karen W. at http://www.kellaton.org.uk/forum/index.php?topic=4188.15.

14)Messages are valign=bottom – this can be very confusing for short messages that are at the bottom of the area allotted to them.

15)When I entered a new message, I was given (quite reasonably), three options, to 'Reply with quote', or to  'Modify', or ' Remove'.  The trouble is that there was no delineation between the text showing the three options, so it just looked like one continuous run of text saying 'Reply with quote Modify Remove'.  You should put a thin border, or some other indicator, to show that these are three separate groups of words.





George
« Last Edit: 15/06/2006 00:37:10 by daveshorts »
 

another_someone

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Re: Have a look at the new forum
« Reply #3 on: 14/06/2006 13:52:24 »
16)I see the signature is not appearing on the posts (it is still in the profile).



George
« Last Edit: 15/06/2006 00:37:41 by daveshorts »
 

another_someone

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Re: Have a look at the new forum
« Reply #4 on: 14/06/2006 14:14:04 »
17)Went to view UKMicky's profile.  Then went to view his most recent posts (http://www.kellaton.org.uk/forum/index.php?action=profile;u=1444;sa=showPosts).  Each post has above it a row using class titlebg2 (not looked at the CSS yet).  This shows on my browser as a pale blue link against a black background (the link turns to red when hovered over).  The overall effect is very low contrast.



George
« Last Edit: 15/06/2006 00:38:08 by daveshorts »
 

another_someone

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Re: Have a look at the new forum
« Reply #5 on: 14/06/2006 14:17:43 »
18)One thing that would be nice to have (I know, I should have asked this earlier), is that each post would display next to it the message number (ideally, the full url) for that particular message, so that one can easily copy a link to the specific message (rather than just a link to the topic0 when quoting it elesewhere.



George
« Last Edit: 15/06/2006 00:38:41 by daveshorts »
 

another_someone

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Re: Have a look at the new forum
« Reply #6 on: 14/06/2006 14:23:28 »
19)I note that all of the smilies are surrounded by square brackets.  Is this a feature, or an oversight?  Looking some more at this issue, it seems to be a transition issue, since it seems on the new site the smilies are not denoted with square brackets around them, while on this site, they do have square brackets around them, so the new site sees those square brackets but does not believe they form a part of the smily.

20)When you type a response to a post (at the bottom of a topic), you have two buttons, one for submit, and the other for preview.  The preview button does not really show you a preview (unlike the preview button on the present site), but takes you to a more comprehensive edit page.



George
« Last Edit: 15/06/2006 00:39:05 by daveshorts »
 

another_someone

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Re: Have a look at the new forum
« Reply #7 on: 14/06/2006 14:32:01 »
21)It would be nice if the edit page for creating/editing posts would have some tooltips to explain the plethora of icon buttons.



George
« Last Edit: 15/06/2006 00:39:31 by daveshorts »
 

another_someone

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Re: Have a look at the new forum
« Reply #8 on: 14/06/2006 14:40:32 »
22)I note that you allow the uploading of attachments, including executables.  Interesting, if possibly a bit dangerous.



George
« Last Edit: 15/06/2006 00:40:00 by daveshorts »
 

another_someone

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Re: Have a look at the new forum
« Reply #9 on: 14/06/2006 14:51:21 »
23)The font size options ([ size = nn ]) is accepted by the input, and is clearly parsed, but does not seem to have any effect.

24)Interesting use of the font option – although the button on the edit screen only set font=veranda; in fact, it seems you can set any font that may be displayed.



George
« Last Edit: 15/06/2006 00:40:37 by daveshorts »
 

another_someone

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Re: Have a look at the new forum
« Reply #10 on: 14/06/2006 14:57:13 »
25)You have the option to include a message icon – where should this appear?

26)Also, interestingly, when you post a message, it allows you to change the title of the topic you will be posting to – or at least, it pretends to give you that option, but quite sensibly, that option does not work.



George
« Last Edit: 15/06/2006 00:41:21 by daveshorts »
 

another_someone

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Re: Have a look at the new forum
« Reply #11 on: 14/06/2006 15:27:34 »
27)http://www.kellaton.org.uk/forum/index.php?action=profile;u=2334;sa=forumProfile has an empty <select> group (named “cat”).  This is a bit untidy.  Would it not be better to remove the select group if there are no options to display? (or, as with the select group called “file”, set it to “display:none”)



George
« Last Edit: 15/06/2006 00:41:52 by daveshorts »
 

another_someone

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Re: Have a look at the new forum
« Reply #12 on: 14/06/2006 15:41:21 »
27)Some topics have a button marked 'new', while others are missing this.

http://www.kellaton.org.uk/forum/index.php?board=6.0 shows 'DIARY ENTRIES & GENERAL CHAT (Ver 2)'  without, 'Offensive Nasty Posters !' without, 'HOW TO POST PICTURES TO THIS SITE' with, 'Test topic ' (my new test topic) without, 'Computer Help...keeping an eye on kids !' without (I had added some test posts to this topic), and most of the rest with.

It seems as if the logo 'new' is attached to old topics.  What is it supposed to mean?



George
« Last Edit: 15/06/2006 00:42:28 by daveshorts »
 

Offline daveshorts

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Re: Have a look at the new forum
« Reply #13 on: 14/06/2006 15:41:31 »
Thankyou George, that is great.
I will work through them ;)
 

Offline daveshorts

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Re: Have a look at the new forum
« Reply #14 on: 14/06/2006 15:44:27 »
27)The new is a bit like the purple folder, which works slightly differently to this forum - it means that you haven't read the topic, because the old forum doesn't keep a track of this it doesn't think you have read anything - I could just remove it, or try and set all old topics to read.

Maybe I will jut remove it
« Last Edit: 15/06/2006 00:42:56 by daveshorts »
 

another_someone

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Re: Have a look at the new forum
« Reply #15 on: 14/06/2006 16:02:46 »
OK, I've found where the site stats are – so that issue is solved.

28)Looking at the most recent topics (http://www.kellaton.org.uk/forum/index.php?action=recent), and the following issues have come up:

29)Firstly, colour coding again.  The “catbg” class uses a blue background, but has green links – not very good contrast again.

30)There is no control over what is considered to be 'recent'.  The present site allows me to view topics that have been added to over the last 15 minutes, last 2 hours, last 12 hours, etc.. (depending upon what my own time window that I wish to see a snapshot for is).  This does not seem possible on the new site.

31)The list of messages contains the full message text.  This may be fine if one only has a small number of messages; but if you have a lot of traffic, and are really only interested in what might be happening in a hand full of topics, then it is a lot of information to wade through.  The present system only shows topic headings that have changed, and you can then drill down into the topic if that looks like it is a topic you might be interested in.

28)Now, you know I said that the new system pretended to allow you to change the topic title (even when the topic is not yours), but then ignores the change.  It seems I was wrong.  It may ignore the change when listing the topic in the forum, but the modified topic title is the one shown with the message when you list the recent messages (look at the message I put in http://www.kellaton.org.uk/forum/index.php?board=6;topic=4188.19#msg35162).



George
« Last Edit: 15/06/2006 00:43:55 by daveshorts »
 

another_someone

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Re: Have a look at the new forum
« Reply #16 on: 14/06/2006 16:42:09 »
quote:
Originally posted by daveshorts
Maybe I will jut remove it



27)Probably tempted to agree – there is quite enough information already there, and little enough space to put it in.

If you want to colour code the topics according to whether they have been read, it might do the same job with less clutter.

That having been said, it sound like to maintain this data you are going to have to create a database of cross reference of every topic by every user, so that you know which users have read which topics.  That sounds like it could end up becoming quite a big database.  Is it worth having that large a database just for that slight increment of functionality?



George
« Last Edit: 15/06/2006 01:10:24 by daveshorts »
 

another_someone

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Re: Have a look at the new forum
« Reply #17 on: 14/06/2006 16:45:53 »
32)Just out of curiosity, had a look how the site would look under Lynx.

The site requires JavaScript to function (and Lynx does not have JavaScript), but not only is there no support for scriptless browsers, there is no <NOSCRIPT> block that would pop up a message to say that the site won't work without JavaScript, so all you are left with is wondering what is happening.

Probably this is enough for you to be getting on with for a while – let me know when you've caught up and want me to look further.  In the meantime, maybe someone else can have a look for problems.



George
« Last Edit: 15/06/2006 01:11:11 by daveshorts »
 

Offline Hadrian

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Re: Have a look at the new forum
« Reply #18 on: 14/06/2006 23:01:24 »
can you get it to work now?  he he

What you do speaks so loudly that I cannot hear what you say.
 

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Re: Have a look at the new forum
« Reply #19 on: 14/06/2006 23:13:55 »
Hi Dave

33) On the topic/active topics page the old software allowed us to delete,edit,and lock the topics without entering the individual topic as we had icons at the end of the line just after the replies, read,and last post boxes, can we have them back please :)because as we can now split topics it will save us from deleting replies one by one when the time comes to slim down some of the subjects like "can you guess what this"  "Zetacap and General weight loss - 2" etc .

Thankyou.
.
Also little thing. The icon at the end of the line  " Split Topic - Select posts to split" is missing.

Michael
« Last Edit: 15/06/2006 01:12:27 by daveshorts »
 

another_someone

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Re: Have a look at the new forum
« Reply #20 on: 14/06/2006 23:47:58 »
34)One other piece of functionality that has gone missing is that on the present you have a right arrow icon (), which if clicked upon, will lead you to the most recent message in the topic.  I can see links to the most recent page, but it seems to lead you to the top of the most recent page, and not to the most recent message.



George
« Last Edit: 15/06/2006 01:13:19 by daveshorts »
 

another_someone

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Re: Have a look at the new forum
« Reply #21 on: 15/06/2006 00:15:35 »
Don't know if this is technically an error, although it is certainly not strictly correct either.

If you set your profile to hide your online status, then rather than actually hiding your online status, it merely declares that you are permanently offline.  I have not saught to demonstrate what this might do to the various stats you hold about online status (i.e. time of day when online, total number of hours online, etc. - but then, I rather suspect these stats are rather dubious in quality anyway).





George
 

another_someone

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Re: Have a look at the new forum
« Reply #22 on: 15/06/2006 00:37:30 »
35) OK, after having said that we have lost much of our search functionality, I see it is more a matter of it being hidden somewhere rather than actually not there.

Apparently there should be a menu option for search that allows an advanced search.  You have a help page for it (as well as an optional calender function), as well as direct access to through http://www.kellaton.org.uk/forum/index.php?action=search, but I cannot actually see where the menu option should be.  Am I just blind, or is there a link that has gone missing?

------- further comment -----

OK – found the link now – it is the small anonymous icon on the left of the search box.  Having the big search entry box, and the big text button to the right of the entry box, it was not immediately apparent that the small icon on the left actually was a totally separate option.



George
« Last Edit: 15/06/2006 02:14:53 by another_someone »
 

another_someone

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Re: Have a look at the new forum
« Reply #23 on: 15/06/2006 00:46:10 »
quote:
Originally posted by Hadrian
can you get it to work now?  he he



A quote from the web page for the software they are using to set up the new site:

http://www.simplemachines.org/
quote:

Simple Machines Forum - SMF in short - is a free, professional grade software package that allows you to set up your own online community within minutes.



[:p][}:)]:D



George
« Last Edit: 15/06/2006 00:49:22 by another_someone »
 

another_someone

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Re: Have a look at the new forum
« Reply #24 on: 15/06/2006 01:12:08 »
http://www.kellaton.org.uk/forum/index.php?action=profile;u=2334;sa=showPosts;start=1200 has got the best contrast of all – black text on black background for class “catbg3“.  Not yet sure where the style for this is defined, since I cannot find the class defined in http://www.kellaton.org.uk/forum/Themes/naksci2/style.css.  No doubt I'll find where you've hidden it (or have you not yet defined it?).




George
« Last Edit: 15/06/2006 01:12:51 by another_someone »
 

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Re: Have a look at the new forum
« Reply #24 on: 15/06/2006 01:12:08 »

 

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