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carswell Jun 24, 2006 04:10 PM

Thought it might be nice to have a positively titled thread for suggested improvements to the software -- positively titled because, all things considered, you've done a great job so far. To get the ball rolling, here are some things I'd like to see. Others should feel free to chime in with their suggestions.

- A way of contacting other members, either via e-mail or a personal message system

- A "today's active topics" type display, similar to the one on the home page but covering the last 24 hours or maybe the time since your last visit

- A topic tracker, a way to receive notification when a topic you've subscribed to has been updated. Notification could be online (e.g. a pop-up window or a box on the My CHOW page) or by e-mail.

- Some sort of visual identification of the new posts in a topic. This would be especially useful in long topics where finding a new post requires scanning a bunch of date/time stamps. How about colour coding the new-since-last-visit posts by displaying them with a uniquely coloured background or font?

- A post preview function like the old board's, so we can see what a post looks like before publishing it.

Thanks!

  1. s
    silvergryphon Jun 24, 2006 04:27 PM

    Ditto on what carswell said. I'd like to see a section on cookbooks, as well. Now, is there someway we can email/pm the moderators? How about a list of members?
    My two cents.

    1 Reply
    1. re: silvergryphon
      The Chowhound Team Jun 24, 2006 06:33 PM

      It's even easier now to contact the mods. Just click on the "report this post" link on a posting, that will open up a form for you to report problematic posts to the mods. It is no longer necessary to go out to your email to contact us.

    2. LindaWhit Jun 24, 2006 04:37 PM

      I think Emailing the Mods hasn't changed - try webmaster@chowhound.com? But it would be convenient to have that listed somewhere.

      2 Replies
      1. re: LindaWhit
        The Chowhound Team Jun 24, 2006 06:34 PM

        Please note, if you would like to send us email, please use "moderators@chowhound.com" as the email address, we are transitioning away from the "webmaster" email address.

        1. re: The Chowhound Team
          rworange Jun 25, 2006 07:59 PM

          Perhaps the webmaster link should be replaced with the moderators link in your list of contacts.

          Contact Information
          Site Feedback: Site Talk forum
          Technical Help: webmaster@chowhound.com
          Advertising Opportunities: advertising@chowhound.com
          Editorial Feedback: editorial@chowhound.com
          Business Development & Partnerships: bizdev@chowhound.com

      2. Paul H Jun 24, 2006 07:21 PM

        Not knowing whether or not this has already been suggested, the thread index page should show both who started the thread (it does now) and who posted the most recent reply.

        1. carswell Jun 24, 2006 08:19 PM

          Reply notification, so that I receive an e-mail or other message informing me when someone has replied to one of my posts.

          1. Robert Lauriston Jun 24, 2006 09:35 PM

            > A way of contacting other members

            I put links in my profile:

            http://www.chowhound.com/users/show/1...

            2 Replies
            1. re: Robert Lauriston
              carswell Jun 24, 2006 09:43 PM

              That's one solution, I guess. The problem is that it allows your e-mail address to be harvested by spammers, the main reason I never included my address on the old board. Much better would be a way of sending e-mail messages through the Chowhound site that kept the recipient's message hidden at all times, even from the sender. Also, again to minimize spam, only registered members should be able to send messages to other members.

              1. re: carswell
                Robert Lauriston Jun 24, 2006 10:15 PM

                Spam's not much of a problem any more with a good filter like the one in Gmail.

            2. Ruth Lafler Jun 24, 2006 11:21 PM

              Those are pretty good suggestions. I actually came to this thread to request a way to send email within the community, since we no longer have our email on our posts. It would make organizing chowdowns even easier. It's a pretty common feature on other message boards, so I'm going to assume it's one of the features in the works.

              1 Reply
              1. re: Ruth Lafler
                rworange Jun 25, 2006 06:40 PM

                Although I suspect a PM option is in the works, I wish it wasn't. It has a lot of flaws in the boards I use.

                First of all, it allows disgruntled posters to shoot off an email to everyone complaining about how they have been wronged.

                Second, it encourages off the board chat about restaurants and food so those hints are not shared by the community. As much as I try not to do that, I fall victim to that myself in many communities, food or not. It is easier to chat one on one about, using food as an example, the great restaurant common to you than putting it on the board.

                I quit one board because the pm allowed some really viscious chat. One group got together to shut out a poster by sending personal messages.

                If you think people are paranoid now, see what happens with personal messanger. People are convinced their messages are monitored so there's all this, 'send me an email' stuff. Like the staff of any board except perhaps 'the FBI forum' would do that.

                I would like an option to include an email address. This way if someone wants to be contacted, they can put their email address in their profile. If not, it says they don't want to be contacted.

                If anyone is taking the extra effort to email, then whatever they are chatting about is important enough to do that.

                And hasn't it been said a million times that Chowhound is about sharing food tips and not socializing.

                Anyway, I put my email at the end of my favorite restaurants in my profile. I don't mind being contacted and I think it is harder for a spammer to collect it from that section than it was in the old software. That was the only reason I stopped putting my email address out there. I never mind being contacted by Chowhounds, but I hate spam, canned or otherwise.

              2. 4
                4chowpups Jun 24, 2006 11:33 PM

                Is the Hotposts still on here? I do not do well with change...and I cannot seem to find it, I liked that part of the site because I do check in daily and I could surf quickly through new posts on the sites I liked (there are many!!). TIA

                1 Reply
                1. re: 4chowpups
                  The Chowhound Team Jun 25, 2006 12:59 AM

                  No, but a way to keep up with current posts is in the works.

                2. r
                  Roy Jun 24, 2006 11:56 PM

                  I'd really like to see a "mark all posts read" capability for the board I'm reading without having to open each individual thread.

                  I'd also love the ability to see more than 20 threads at a time.

                  1. m
                    MyNextMeal Jun 25, 2006 12:10 AM

                    The geographic classification of the boards and all the threads is still a big problem, IMHO.

                    I wish there were a way to tag (a'la del.icio.us?) using a standard group of chowhound site tags - for state, city, and maybe a few other classifications. A post about multiple cities or multiple states could have as many tags to identify locale as it needed. And maybe some optional tags for cuisine type, budget.

                    And then, a'la del.icio.us you could surf large regional boards via these tags...

                    1. Robert Lauriston Jun 25, 2006 12:52 AM

                      You should have "discuss this" links for the features.

                      1. toodie jane Jun 25, 2006 01:40 AM

                        I always appreciated the old board's tight, easy-to-use and -see posts and threads. Carswell highlights the cumbersome nature of the new threads. Takes a lot longer to work through new posts on a thread.

                        The graphic design of the site seems oddly utilitarian. Perhaps this is just an interim style? Sure doesn't seem very inspired/-ing. I really don't see it as any kind of visual improvement over the old style, which while perhaps quaint to computer geeks, was visually lively. This one seems leaden.

                        My wish list:
                        *tighten up the space for better use
                        *dump the ugly red background(fairly universal color for fire, danger, stop) which is also the most difficult color to "read"
                        *use a more friendly bright blue background
                        *lose the bold, large-point heading font (IT'S LIKE YELLING)
                        *create a hot-post feature
                        *create and post maps or descriptions for regional areas so outsiders understand the parameters
                        *create concise tutorials for the more obscure functions.

                        tj

                        3 Replies
                        1. re: toodie jane
                          Robert Lauriston Jun 25, 2006 08:24 PM

                          "Takes a lot longer to work through new posts on a thread"? It's the opposite for me. Getting the whole thread on one page and skimming for the "New" icons is fast. It could be faster if they stood out a bit nire but it's still way faster than the old system.

                          I don't see a red background.

                          1. re: Robert Lauriston
                            toodie jane Jun 25, 2006 10:07 PM

                            Sorry, I never saw any 'new' buttons this morning. Did they just appear? They will indeed make scanning faster, but they are pretty obscure. Maybe a flashier color (no, not flashing :)
                            The ugly red background is at the bottom of any page, and because it was horrifically solid on the 'coming soon' page, I wanted to voice my objection to any further use of it. White on red is the most difficult to read for any length of time, so I hope another color will be substituted in time.

                            I do stand by my comment that the color combo is utilitarian--someone said it better: institutional.

                            1. re: toodie jane
                              Robert Lauriston Jun 25, 2006 10:08 PM

                              The "New" buttons appear at the top of new posts, but only after the first time you read a thread with the new software.

                        2. adamclyde Jun 25, 2006 02:29 PM

                          the only thing - and I mean the only thing - I'd add is the ability to see more posts on the same page. As another thread suggested, having a "see 100 posts" option or something. Other than that... the sucker is awesome. Great job, folks.

                          1. carswell Jun 25, 2006 02:33 PM

                            Another wish: NEW icons on the home page's active topics listing. As things stand now, the only way to know whether you've already read the lastest posts in a topic is to remember how many replies were in it the last time you visited.

                            1. Candy Jun 25, 2006 02:39 PM

                              I too would love to see a page specific to cookbooks.

                              1. s
                                sandramrma Jun 25, 2006 02:43 PM

                                yes that is I

                                1. Robert Lauriston Jun 25, 2006 08:29 PM

                                  > 100 posts [threads]

                                  I'd like to be able to personalize the number of threads that appear in board view.

                                  Some people want to set it higher so they get more on one page.

                                  I'd prefer to set it lower, to whatever number can fit in my maximized browser. The "older" button loads so fast that I'd rather use it than scroll the browser window.

                                  1. Peter Cuce Jun 25, 2006 08:43 PM

                                    A couple of other wishes:

                                    1. How about an "email this post" option?
                                    2. How about a "Post this to del.icio.us" option on each post? That's where I save all my CH links anyway.

                                    1. s
                                      silvergryphon Jun 25, 2006 10:53 PM

                                      One thing I've noticed is when reading the latest posts, as one is scanning the list, there are no dates for these posts, but the times are there. If you look at this thread, for instance, you can see that the times of the postings are all over the place. A perfect example of where the dates would be handy. Right now it's confusing, for me, anyhow.

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