Possible Improvements to "New" Feature
I love the "new" display on the messages. However, I think it would be more helpful if the banner also displayed the number of new messages. In a lengthy thread it's easy to scroll down to the new messages at the bottom and miss new replies to internal threads.
Ideally, there would be an option to link immediately to the lates reply as well as scrolling through lengthy threads gets tiresome.
I've become accustomed (on other boards) to clicking an icon that loads a thread with the page scrolled to the first "new" post. Because some Chowhound.com threads are soooo long, that would be very handy to add here. And there's already a nice NEW icon to click on. ;-)
I guess this is different than the above suggestion, "latest reply," since I would prefer "first NEW on page" regardless of the actual sequence in which the NEW posts were added.
For Firefox + Greasemonkey users, I posted a user script that will superimpose a little palette in the lower right corner of the window with links to "new posts" in the currently displayed thread. It's very fragile, in that it depends totally on the current structure of Chowhound, but perhaps it's a useful idea. Obviously it is rudimentary and could be improved in innumerable ways... but not tonight!
(21 September 2006)
For Firefox + Greasemonkey users, I posted a second user script that will collapse all replies in a thread that are not marked as NEW, and then scroll to the first new reply. As with the New Chow Bar, it's very fragile... but it seems to work!
(22 September 2006)
I haven't downloaded Greasemonkey but use Firefox and looked at your demo, and it is almost exactly what I was looking for.
Would it be technically feasible or did you consider, instead of a "show" toggle on each already-read post, not showing any old post and just have one click to show ALL the old posts. That way, you could see only new posts without scrolling or clicking.
Thanks so much for your ingenuity and genorosity in sharing this. If I can figure out how to use this, I think I will.