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Geek Culture / TGC beta forums - closed until further notice

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The Next
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Posted: 25th Nov 2013 21:14 Edited at: 6th Feb 2014 18:19
Hello everyone,

You may have noticed I have become quite active over the last few weeks tinkering with lots of code. This is most evident with the addition of personal messaging to the forums over the last few days. This is the first stage in a line of forum updates that I am making to both this forum and the FPSCR forums to improve them for everyone.

I have a list of must have features that are to be added requested by moderators and TGC, however I want to involve the community as much as possible to get a central list of things that can be added.

I would just like to point out that the list generated is no guarantee of implementation it just means features will be considered, they still need to be suitable and approved. I do not work for TGC so still have a full time job, plus other projects for TGC to work on. So progress will not be super fast but it will be done.

So post away! Discussions on anything related to improving the forums are permitted here, let the ideas flow.

View the beta forums here


Large development list
  • Whole new design using CSS3, sprites and updated HTML markup. In Progress
  • Post vote up system [This will need very careful discussion before being implemented.]
  • New attachments system. In Progress
  • Subscription board that shows new posts from boards you sub to.
  • Forum poll system


Small fixes list
  • Strikethrough text
  • Variable text size BETA Site
  • Fix location/playing
  • Nameable quote blocks BETA Site
  • YouTube button BETA Site
  • Soundcloud button
  • Go to new post button take you to the last post if there are no new posts, rather than an error giving you the choice to go back to the start of the thread or the main page.
  • How about a selectable list of languages for the code tags?
  • Post preview button BETA Site
  • Code insert buttons should insert the code at the cursor position in the text box rather than at the end. BETA Site
  • Code snippets should have "SELECT ALL" or "COPY ALL" button. BETA Site
  • When uploading a file it would be nice to have the link for it as soon as it's uploaded so that we can insert the link into our posts (for images mainly) [THIS WILL BE DEPENDANT ON THE NEW UPLOAD SYSTEM]
  • Automatic image re-sizing for images larger than the page would be great as well. BETA Site
  • It would be nice if there were some kind of upload tagging system so that each user could manage their uploads: copy links, delete files, sort their files into groups [THIS WILL BE DEPENDANT ON THE NEW UPLOAD SYSTEM]
  • Tidy up the emoties. It would be nice if the bar had "pages" we can flick through and click on an emoticon, the current system is a bit tacked on.
  • Search box should be at the top of the page. BETA Site
  • sort "my threads", so I can display my threads from only a specific board.
  • Post edits highlighted (similar to new posts)


Windows 7 Pro, Intel i7 3.8 GHz, 16GB DDR3, NVIDIA GTX 780 4GB Superclocked

View the beta TGC forum progress at the url below View beta forum
mr Handy
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Posted: 25th Nov 2013 21:20 Edited at: 25th Nov 2013 21:57
Hi, The Next Forum Admin!

1. Strikethrough text.

update 1:
2. Show 'Location' or 'Playing'? < broken
edit: maybe, allow user to select one or both values?

update 2:
3. quote name tag like [quote=mr Handy]
edit: name tag should be as [code lang=] i.e. without ""

P.S. thanks!

The Next
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Posted: 25th Nov 2013 21:28 Edited at: 25th Nov 2013 21:34
1. Your wish is my command Button now here

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mr Handy
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Posted: 25th Nov 2013 21:38 Edited at: 25th Nov 2013 21:42
Quote: "Button now here"

Hey, that's a cosmic speed!

Also, the quote is nameless as you see. We have code lang tags:


What do you think?

budokaiman
FPSC Tool Maker
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Posted: 25th Nov 2013 22:18
I'd like to see buttons for YouTube videos and Soundcloud, since both can be embedded, but you have to manually type in the tags.


"Giraffe is soft, Gorilla is hard." - Phaelax
mr Handy
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Posted: 25th Nov 2013 22:38 Edited at: 25th Nov 2013 22:39
off topic: I'd like to see Mr. Lee Bamber ever created such thread for DBP... at least for bugs... sign.

...Hey! How about hiding off topic text like (code)?
4. [ot]text[/ot]

budokaiman
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Posted: 25th Nov 2013 23:25
Quote: "...Hey! How about hiding off topic text like (code)?
4. [ot]text[/ot]
"


I don't see where that would really be necessary as it can already be done with code snippets.

---------------------------------------

Some other things I would like to see:

A fix for the seaming of the bar up top.


Automatic image re-sizing for images larger than the page would be great as well.


"Giraffe is soft, Gorilla is hard." - Phaelax
easter bunny
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Posted: 25th Nov 2013 23:27
You might want to add ssl as default (or at least an option). The forum as it is is completely vulnerable to cookie thieves, not that that's a huge problem though.

mr Handy
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Posted: 25th Nov 2013 23:57 Edited at: 26th Nov 2013 00:03
Quote: "I don't see where that would really be necessary as it can already be done with code snippets."

A valid point, but:
1. Code snippet is placed inside <pre> tag* and it's font is monospaced.
2. Code snipped has been made for differrent purpose and, therefore, has obvious caption.
3. People often write "off topic" here.

*Defines pre-formatted/space-preserving text

edit: random example from GreenGandalf.

Kezzla
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Posted: 25th Nov 2013 23:59 Edited at: 26th Nov 2013 00:05
How about making the go to new post button take you to the last post if there are no new posts, rather than an error giving you the choice to go back to the start of the thread or the main page.

how about an option to vote posts as helpful or some kind of thumbs up thumbs down system like youtube.

how about a facebook like button for threads to share interesting topics with non TGC people.

how about the option for an OP to unlock their own thread if it has been locked simply for inactivity -eg WIP thread that has gathered dust but later on has been developed further. the user would have to make a new thread to ask for it to be unlocked leading clutter for the search function.
edit: Also an option to have the carriage returns match the post writing box so that the way you see it in the edit window is the way it comes out on the post.

That will fix very long lines like above ^^ which looked nice and paragraphy in the edit box.
Um... That's all for now.

Burn retina, burn!
mr Handy
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Posted: 26th Nov 2013 00:18 Edited at: 26th Nov 2013 00:24
Quote: "how about the option for an OP to unlock their own thread if it has been locked simply for inactivity -eg WIP thread that has gathered dust but later on has been developed further. the user would have to make a new thread to ask for it to be unlocked leading clutter for the search function."

Yeah, I thought about that too!
Quote: "how about an option to vote posts as helpful or some kind of thumbs up thumbs down system like youtube."

We have 'value member' badge. Or you mean 'karma'? In my opinion, adding karma to forum could cause karma 'fever', when people start 'hunting' for karma points instead of regular communication. As I said, it's only my opinion.

edit:
Quote: "edit: Also an option to have the carriage returns match the post writing box so that the way you see it in the edit window is the way it comes out on the post."

I have a resizeable input box in Chrome. Maybe post preview? As example, when newbie starts a thread he can't see it's flaws until the thread/post is approved by a mod.

Mobiius
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Posted: 26th Nov 2013 00:22
How about a selectable list of languages for the code tags?
Post preview button?

mr Handy
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Posted: 26th Nov 2013 00:25
Quote: "Post preview button?"

This.

Kezzla
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Posted: 26th Nov 2013 00:34
Quote: "We have 'value member' badge. Or you mean 'karma'? In my opinion, adding karma to forum could cause karma 'fever', when people start 'hunting' for karma points instead of regular communication. As I said, it's only my opinion."


I was thinking something as simple as a +1 for if you agree with a statement.

or a figure on the bottom of the post saying X no of people found this helpful.

not necessarily a karma system. What I was imagining would only apply to the immediate post.

Burn retina, burn!
Libervurto
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Posted: 26th Nov 2013 02:06 Edited at: 26th Nov 2013 02:42
I have a few to add to the pile, sorry if I repeat anyone.

1. Code insert buttons (like bold or the proposed YouTube or Soundcloud buttons) should insert the code at the cursor position in the text box rather than at the end.

2. Code snippets should have "SELECT ALL" or "COPY ALL" button.

3. For code snippets I prefer the layout of sites like Stack Exchange where code is displayed in a box of a fixed dimension and if it exceeds the boundaries the box becomes scrollable. If code was changed to this format our current code snippets could be used as Handy's off-topic/spoiler boxes.

4. When uploading a file it would be nice to have the link for it as soon as it's uploaded so that we can insert the link into our posts (for images mainly)

5. It would be nice if there were some kind of upload tagging system so that each user could manage their uploads: copy links, delete files, sort their files into groups. This could be implemented within the current structure, all we'd need is to link the address of the uploaded file with the person who uploaded it, then their profile can act as a shortcut to view, download or delete the file; organizing files into groups or fake directories applies the same principle. Numerous times I have uploaded duplicate files because I couldn't find the original. It would be nice to be able to send people to my images or my code files if I've uploaded something relevant.

6. Tidy up the emoties. It would be nice if the bar had "pages" we can flick through and click on an emoticon, the current system is a bit tacked on.

7. Search box should be at the top of the page.

8. I made a stylesheet for the site with a hovering navbar. Of course it's a bit buggy but I find it a great improvement for browsing the forums. Try it out and see what you think.

Quote: "How about making the go to new post button take you to the last post if there are no new posts, rather than an error giving you the choice to go back to the start of the thread or the main page.

how about an option to vote posts as helpful or some kind of thumbs up thumbs down system like youtube.
"

+1 For both those ideas.

Quote: "how about a facebook like button for threads to share interesting topics with non TGC people."

We already have that. Look for the facebook icon in the top right of each post.

Quote: "how about the option for an OP to unlock their own thread if it has been locked simply for inactivity "

I don't see why threads are locked from inactivity at all. What is the problem with bringing up an old topic if it becomes relevant again?

[edit]
X. One thing to help custom stylesheet makers would be to give IDs to things like buttons, that way we can change their images and whatnot.


Formerly OBese87.
Yodaman Jer
User Banned
Posted: 26th Nov 2013 02:14
I +1 the post preview button. Would make life SOO much easier!

Also the revised code snippets would be great, especially with select all/copy all. We've needed that for ages!

Libervurto
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Posted: 26th Nov 2013 04:31
This is quite a big suggestion but... the whole site is badly designed.
Pages are arranged in tables with dozens of images, every image is a separate file! This is a pretty basic forum so it should have very few images and load fast on any machine. Most of the visuals on here can be reproduced with CSS, here are some buttons I made: CLICK

In case that doesn't work I took a screenshot ->


Formerly OBese87.

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Kevin Picone
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Posted: 26th Nov 2013 06:23
* Post and or Thread categories to aid in searching (even viewing a board). So a user can tag replies or post threads as being concerning to a particular common subject matter. Things ranging from 2D,3D, terrain, shaders, collision, arrays, types etc etc. Even thought there's forums for some of these, you'll find useful content spread right across the boards. So ideally when a user hits the search option they can select from the per-selected common options.

* Ability to recommend (vote up/for) a single post in a thread. There shouldn't be a vote down option though, as it becomes like karma and was useless on the older DB boards. I.e see abuse! Voting for the content would ideally aid newer users find the more valuable responses in a thread. Rather than be a personality contest, which is what happened before. This could also be tied to the search engine. So a searcher can find the threads with the most useful, or recommended votes. Ideally the best content will float to the top.


* Text size [size=14]Bigger Headline Text[/size]

* Colour (Both spellings) [colour=ff0000]This would be some red text[/colour]

Phaelax
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Posted: 26th Nov 2013 09:09
Quote: "X. One thing to help custom stylesheet makers would be to give IDs to things like buttons, that way we can change their images and whatnot."

This would make customization easier for those of us using Stylish. But it can still be done as my CSS shows.

Quote: "In case that doesn't work I took a screenshot ->"

lol, if it doesn't work for them then I doubt they'll want to implement those buttons :-p But I agree about the forum code, though this would be a big request. I still have my mobile version of the site available *wink* *wink*


Add AppGameKit code highlighting to the code tag, even though I think only a handful of users actually specify the language with the code tag.

I agree with the addition of a name option for quotes.

I think it would be helpful to be able to sort "my threads", so I can display my threads from only a specific board. For instance, display all my threads from code snippets and not mix them in with my millions of off-topic posts.

The Next
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Posted: 26th Nov 2013 13:45 Edited at: 26th Nov 2013 13:45
I like all the ideas that have been posted I think I go them all and added to the top post, if I missed any feel free to point out to me.

I agree that a post vote up system would be good but it will need careful management on how it is implemented top avoid the issues many of you have pointed out.

Windows 7 Pro, Intel i7 3.8 GHz, 16GB DDR3, NVIDIA GTX 780 4GB Superclocked
budokaiman
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Posted: 26th Nov 2013 16:22
Quote: "if I missed any feel free to point out to me."

How about the image resizing:
http://forum.thegamecreators.com/?m=forum_view&t=208922&b=2&msg=2497876#m2497876


"Giraffe is soft, Gorilla is hard." - Phaelax
The Next
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Posted: 26th Nov 2013 16:44
budo that is already on the first post.

Quote: "- Automatic image re-sizing for images larger than the page would be great as well."


Windows 7 Pro, Intel i7 3.8 GHz, 16GB DDR3, NVIDIA GTX 780 4GB Superclocked
mr Handy
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Posted: 26th Nov 2013 17:14 Edited at: 26th Nov 2013 17:16
I am not sure if it is a bug: you can't view attached image it if not logged in but you can download it. I just don't get the logic.

The Next
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Posted: 26th Nov 2013 17:19
That is indeed a bug but will be removed with the new attachment system I am implementing so I won't include that on the list.

Windows 7 Pro, Intel i7 3.8 GHz, 16GB DDR3, NVIDIA GTX 780 4GB Superclocked
Libervurto
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Posted: 26th Nov 2013 17:23
Quote: "lol, if it doesn't work for them then I doubt they'll want to implement those buttons"

The link wasn't working for me earlier, but it is now. The code is just some divs with gradients.



I love CSS now that I'm learning more of it. It can do a lot.

Quote: "I agree that a post vote up system would be good but it will need careful management on how it is implemented top avoid the issues many of you have pointed out."

I agree that it would be better without down-votes. Up-voting is fine because you are just agreeing with what's already been said, but if you have an objection to something someone's written then you should explain your reasons.


Formerly OBese87.
budokaiman
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Posted: 26th Nov 2013 17:36
Quote: "budo that is already on the first post."

Ah, thought they were listed in the same order of the posts.


"Giraffe is soft, Gorilla is hard." - Phaelax
The Next
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Posted: 26th Nov 2013 17:44 Edited at: 26th Nov 2013 17:44
No my ordering was random I will organize into priority order soon. I am starting work on a new design later this evening after I have done a few bits for Rick so I hope to have that as a test theme for you all to try soon.

Windows 7 Pro, Intel i7 3.8 GHz, 16GB DDR3, NVIDIA GTX 780 4GB Superclocked
Zotoaster
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Posted: 26th Nov 2013 18:27
I would like the ability to subscribe to certain boards, and have a personal 'front' board that shows new posts from all your subscriptions.

"everyone forgets a semi-colon sometimes." - Phaelax
Nickydude
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Posted: 26th Nov 2013 18:28
Wow! I was just thinking the exact same thing Zotoaster! I even made a post but then deleted it seconds before you made yours.

I reject your reality and substitute my own...
Libervurto
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Posted: 26th Nov 2013 18:54
Quote: "I would like the ability to subscribe to certain boards, and have a personal 'front' board that shows new posts from all your subscriptions."

When you say "boards" do you mean "threads"? Because I would like that too.


Formerly OBese87.
Zotoaster
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Posted: 26th Nov 2013 19:50
Quote: "When you say "boards" do you mean "threads"? Because I would like that too."


Perhaps that would work too, but generally I only look at certain boards. I've even developed a certain order in which I browse them. It would be nice if I could add 'Geek Culture', 'WIP', 'Program Announcements', etc, to a 'My Boards' board, and every new post in each of my subscriptions shows in that one. If they could all come at the correct order based on the date and time of the most recent post (just like the standard boards), that would be ideal. I suppose it's about the same as the front page of reddit.

"everyone forgets a semi-colon sometimes." - Phaelax
The Next
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Posted: 26th Nov 2013 20:15 Edited at: 26th Nov 2013 20:16
@Zotoaster

That is a good idea I will add that too the list.

@Everyone

Attached to this post is a preview of the default new theme in its first version. Give feedback I know you can't see much but this version is internal testing only so I can't give you the link.

This theme is designed to adapt to mobile devices so the menu layout is very clutter free. The blue area at the top will be dynamically loading the forum header images but we will need new ones as the old are too small for the new design.

The aim is to keep the site clutter free, right at the top of the content area will be a new expandable search section with advanced search abilities. There will also be a notifications bar here for TGC announcements.

I will give you all a more detailed look at the thread and board views when they are a bit further along.

Windows 7 Pro, Intel i7 3.8 GHz, 16GB DDR3, NVIDIA GTX 780 4GB Superclocked

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Blobby 101
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Posted: 26th Nov 2013 20:35
It looks quite nice and clean, though can we still have the option of using the old themes? I'm quite fond of TGC's look - It's old fashioned but I've just got very used to it

The Next
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Posted: 26th Nov 2013 20:40
@Blobby 101

Unfortunately the new features being added to the forum will make the old themes unmaintainable they are a massive mess code wise. Once new themes are implemented the old ones will be removed. The old ones are based too heavily around tables the new forums will not use any tables at all.

However I may be able to make a new theme that has the old header style, but the new content layout which won't use tables.

Windows 7 Pro, Intel i7 3.8 GHz, 16GB DDR3, NVIDIA GTX 780 4GB Superclocked
Blobby 101
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Posted: 26th Nov 2013 21:29
Oh well, it's for the best I guess.

thenerd
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Posted: 26th Nov 2013 21:31
@Blobby 101 and I will be joining the few who will miss this theme... I like the current look, it distinguishes this forum from the generic look that plagues many other forums. At the very least, consider keeping the button visuals... personally I love the pixel-art look that they have.

Mobiius
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Posted: 26th Nov 2013 21:35
I'm liking that new layout. Very clean.

The Next
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Posted: 26th Nov 2013 21:36
I also enjoy the look of these forums so as well as the new theme I will create as close a clone as I can to the old forum design with the new code.

The designs are open to feedback if you want to submit a photoshop version of a design you have made I would love to see it.

Windows 7 Pro, Intel i7 3.8 GHz, 16GB DDR3, NVIDIA GTX 780 4GB Superclocked
Yodaman Jer
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Posted: 26th Nov 2013 22:13
Holy cow, a theme update too? Finally! Will it support color schemes like the current layout? I'm quite fond of purple and green.

The Next
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Posted: 26th Nov 2013 22:25
There will be various colour schemes.

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Yodaman Jer
User Banned
Posted: 26th Nov 2013 22:54 Edited at: 27th Nov 2013 00:49
YAY! I'm so glad you're in charge of this, The Next! TGC has been LONG overdue for various updates and I'm glad you're the one who's doing it!

EDIT: Can you please make the max allowed size of an avatar be at least 80x80px? 50x50px is ridiculously tiny in 2013!

BiggAdd
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Posted: 27th Nov 2013 00:56 Edited at: 27th Nov 2013 00:56
Can we have a button somewhere on the forum, that when you press it it serves out some ice cream under my monitor? A button for hot fudge sauce would be good too, but if that would take too long to code then I can settle with the ice cream.

P.S. I like spaghetti flavored ice cream. But whichever is easiest.

Keep up the good work The Next.

The Next
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Posted: 27th Nov 2013 01:48
Thanks Yodaman Jer and I will be increasing the avatar size if I can we will see how it fits into the new design.

BiggAdd I will see what I can do I think I may have that code
somewhere already chocolate sauce only I'm afraid. Hot fudge slows the server down.

Windows 7 Pro, Intel i7 3.8 GHz, 16GB DDR3, NVIDIA GTX 780 4GB Superclocked
Yodaman Jer
User Banned
Posted: 27th Nov 2013 04:40
Quote: "Hot fudge slows the server down."


Can you not simply turn its container upside-downways and tap its bottom, like with an old ketchup bottle? But imagine the bandwidth it would take for such operations!

mr Handy
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Posted: 27th Nov 2013 07:24
mr Handy wrote:
Quote: "off topic: I'd like to see Mr. Lee Bamber ever created such thread for DBP... at least for bugs... sign.

...Hey! How about hiding off topic text like (code)?
4. [ot]text[/ot]"

budokaiman wrote:
Quote: "I don't see where that would really be necessary as it can already be done with code snippets."

mr handy wrote:
Quote: "A valid point, but:
1. Code snippet is placed inside <pre> tag* and it's font is monospaced.
2. Code snipped has been made for differrent purpose and, therefore, has obvious caption.
3. People often write "off topic" here.

*Defines pre-formatted/space-preserving text

edit: random example from GreenGandalf."


I want to add one important fact that I forgot: you can't hide image in code. Very useful for large images or series of images that enlarges thread a lot.

Libervurto
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Posted: 27th Nov 2013 10:40 Edited at: 27th Nov 2013 10:41
Quote: "I want to add one important fact that I forgot: you can't hide image in code. Very useful for large images or series of images that enlarges thread a lot."

That's a good point, image intensive threads kill slow connections. Youtube videos do too, maybe be able to hide those too?

Quote: "Can you not simply turn its container upside-down and tap its bottom, like with an old ketchup bottle? But imagine the bandwidth it would take for such operations!"

That will help server-side but it's not going to help squeeze it through the pipes any faster! Perhaps if the fudge were heated to 600°C before serving it would have a low enough viscosity to flow through the pipes? The pipes around my area aren't warm enough though so it would cool down again and cause a blockage. Darn antiquated infrastructure holding back progress!

The Next: It looks very plain at the moment but I have high hopes. Here is how the forum looks for me with my custom style sheet:



Formerly OBese87.
Van B
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Location: Sunnyvale
Posted: 27th Nov 2013 10:58
One thing I would like is the option to make a post float... Like, if I have a WIP thread, and I post an update in the middle of page 3 - I might want that post to be shown at the start of the thread as well. So if I post a new screenshot or something, it appears in it's usual place on page 3, but I could also 'float' it, and it would be linked to the first post somehow - like first post, then an expanding list of any floating posts, then the normal reply posts after that.

Would be good to be able to have a list of updates after the first post, kinda keep the first post updated with new screenshots etc automatically.

Really, by the time most WIP threads hit page 3, they are so untidy and gradually get more and more untidy - some features to help thread originators keep things tidy themselves would be great, and would encourage people to keep track of WIP's.

Ohh, and an option to keep track of a thread might be good too - a list of tracked threads that have been posted in recently perhaps.

I am the one who knocks...
Libervurto
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Location: On Toast
Posted: 27th Nov 2013 11:23
Quote: "One thing I would like is the option to make a post float..."

That sounds kind of messy the way you put it but I like the idea.
So, you would be able to append your own posts, and the appendages would be displayed directly below the post, but also a copy would appear in at the end of the thread, perhaps with a link "This post is an appendage, click here to view the original post"?


Formerly OBese87.
The Next
Web Engineer
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Location: United Kingdom
Posted: 27th Nov 2013 12:00
Quote: "The pipes around my area aren't warm enough though so it would cool down again and cause a blockage."


I will be having words with your ISP, pipes that cannot transport hot sauces is just not good enough!

Quote: "It looks very plain at the moment but I have high hopes. Here is how the forum looks for me with my custom style sheet:"


There will be a darker theme also the reason I am going for a purposely very minimal theme is many people don't like dark colour schemes and have trouble reading on them.
It makes more sense to have a theme everyone can read and change at a later date because they prefer a darker version, than to have one they cannot read so choose not to use the forums.
The version I posted does miss a lot of visual elements and I am no where near happy with it yet will post another one soon.

Quote: "I want to add one important fact that I forgot: you can't hide image in code. Very useful for large images or series of images that enlarges thread a lot."


This shouldn't be an issue in future after the new attachments system is in place.

@Van B

Do you have an example of a site that does this I would like to see an implementation of this system. Sounds interesting though.

Windows 7 Pro, Intel i7 3.8 GHz, 16GB DDR3, NVIDIA GTX 780 4GB Superclocked
Van B
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Joined: 8th Oct 2002
Location: Sunnyvale
Posted: 27th Nov 2013 12:40
I haven't seen that feature on another forum, but really I tend not to visit other developer forums, so it might just be me.

I didn't explain it too well, should probably make a mock screenshot or something to explain things better.

I am the one who knocks...

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