Improvement in IDing unread thread updates
This issue has come up a few times in previous threads - but it seems to be getting buried.
Overall the new organization is good (okay, the text should be a little smaller) - with one problem that is really detracting from the site for me.
I find it impossible to effectively keep up with multiple threads because there is no way (that I am aware of) to know if I have read the thread in its entirety or if there have been new replies since I last looked. On the old site this was immediately obvious since each reply had a link, and once I'd read it the link was a different color - no problems and I could tell at a glance if any thread I had read over the last couple weeks had been updated.
With the new organization this feature is gone and replaced with the 'latest reply' heading and the bookmark to my CHOW option. These are essentially useless for this purpose since I still don't know if the latest reply came before or after I last checked the thread. Bookmarking to my CHOW does nothing to help as - again - I still don't know if it has been updated since I last read it. Bookmarking to my CHOW is a good thing, though.
The obvious solution is a color change to the thread once clicked. Of course the color must change to the 'unread' color if the thread is updated. Another possibility is to have a subheading listing 'thread updated X hours ago by Poster' - which would at least give you some idea if it is worthwhile to click the thread again. In combination with bookmarking to my CHOW, these changes would make the site much, much better IMO.
Hi.. An example of this for me is as follows: poster David Ford had a great thread running on this and related topics, with 44 replies to his original post. Upon checking back in on the thread later, I could see that there were now 47 posted replies (fortunately, I remembered the earlier number and could tell that 3 new ones were added). BUT, I then had to submerge myself into the ENTIRE thread, hunting for the three new replies among the 47; the 3 new replies were not just to be found at the bottom of the page, but interspersed thru the entire thread, as replies to replies. Took five minutes of hunting to find the replies that may or may not have been germaine to my specific interest...
What I've always hated most about flat view forums is having to wade through all the replies to get to the ones I want to read. I much prefer a threaded forum so I can just "right click" and open the replies I choose to see. People complained about the loading time of the old Chowhound, but that wasn't an issue for me because I didn't use the "Back" button much when browsing Chowhound. Still don't use it much, but browsing is less convenient for me now due to the unthreaded format.
This is working for me, other than in the user name view. If you go to any of the boards, the main page shows the yellow background and "new" symbol for anything I have not read. Within the thread, any new posts since I've read it last, shows up with a yellow background. I can quickly see new posts since I have read it last.
The only place this isn't working right is when you click on a user name and see that user's posts - then everything comes up as new. Melanie posted that the programmers know of this problem and are working on it.
Perhaps there is an issue with different browsers? I use Firefox 1.5 on Win XP.
Ah! I am a Mac with an old Safari, but Firefox is good and will become my only browser (about time huh?). Thanks. Although I have to say the yellow background is barely visible - less so than the 'new' icon next to the reply. If that light yellow was much darker I don't think I could find anything to complain about!
In any case - this should do it - thanks!
Actually, come to think of it - a color change on the main heading , or some other way to mark threads I've read would still be helpful in combination with the 'new' icon. When a thread has a 'new' I have to read the heading to see if I am interested in it/had read it at some point. Of course the bookmark button would solve that problem - I guess I am unsure if I want to bookmark every thread I want to check up on. We'll see.