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New on site: Chowhound dropdown!

mudaba Jun 14, 2012 04:45 PM

We're happy to announce that we have streamlined the way users can access Chowhound boards. We like it, and hope you do too. You will see a triangle dropdown on the top navigation (where it says "Chowhound Discussions") and if you are not logged in, you will see the most trafficked boards on the site. If you are logged in, you will also see your saved boards listed in alphabetical order. We hope these shortcuts help you move around the site more easily, and that you get to where you're going faster.

In a week or so, we will be removing the "Choose a Board" box at the top of the thread pages, but wanted to give everyone some time to get used to the dropdown first.

Thanks, Meredith

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  1. Quine RE: mudaba Jun 14, 2012 05:13 PM

    I am also liking the "related discussions" and "most recent discussions" being on the side. With the related discussions being right at "eye sight" perhaps it will cut down on the bane of local boards "where can I find a good.....?" clueless, questions. The most recent discussions, is nice as it shows some real time activity on the board in an easy way. Bravo for the changes!

    1. j
      janniecooks RE: mudaba Jun 15, 2012 09:27 AM

      I like the drop-down box for navigation and the removal of the "Choose a Board" box at the top of the pages. However, the drop-down box has room only for 8 1/2 boards, plus the navigation title, on both sides of the box. So if one has saved more than 9 boards will it be necessary to select "My Saved Boards", have a new window open, and then select the board of interest? Or will the drop-down box be dynamically sized to reflect all the saved boards? (Plus, the final board listed being "cut in half" horizontally at the bottom of the drop-down is visually annoying.)

      37 Replies
      1. re: janniecooks
        Dave MP RE: janniecooks Jun 15, 2012 10:05 AM

        Thanks for noticing the bug of the board name being 'cut in half.' We noticed that too, and we'll hopefully be fixing that soon!

        As far as Saved Boards go, there's no limit to the number of Saved Boards you can have, but only 7-9 will end up displaying (depending on the length of their titles). We did a little research into this, and *very* few users have more than 8 saved boards, so this change doesn't affect most people. So you're correct that if you have 10 boards saved, you'll need to select "My Saved Boards" to see them all.

        Saved Boards appear in the dropdown in alphabetical order, which is also something to consider if you have more than 7 or 8 of them. There's currently no way to change this. The good news is that there's less of a reason to have boards like "Manhattan" or "Home Cooking" as a Saved Board now, since they are always going to be in the left column of your dropdown anyway....so you should choose Saved Boards that are not also among the most popular, to maximize your dropdown capabilities.

        Hope this makes sense, and let us know if you have other questions/suggestions.

        Dave MP

        1. re: Dave MP
          janniecooks RE: Dave MP Jun 15, 2012 12:53 PM

          Dave, thanks for the good idea to use the most popular boards listed in the left side of the box and not save, for example, home cooking - a classic case of "why didn't I think of that"! Thanks again, and I second the bravo on the new navigation.

          1. re: Dave MP
            huiray RE: Dave MP Jun 15, 2012 03:31 PM

            I dislike this new feature. Really do.

            As janniecooks also says, the cut-off at 8 1/2 boards is very annoying and the inability to have any more than that is, in my view, a misconceived decision by CH.

            My 2¢.

            Then, there was this: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/8061...
            What happened?

            1. re: huiray
              Dave MP RE: huiray Jun 15, 2012 03:59 PM

              Hi huiray,

              Thanks for your thoughts. As I mentioned above, the cut-off problem is a bug that I hope we can fix very soon. I agree that this is annoying, and certainly wasn't intentional.

              Also, you can still have as many saved boards as you want, but you'll only be able to access 7-9 in your dropdown. If you want to see all of your saved boards at once, you'll be able to do this through your profile page. Just select "My Saved Boards" in the dropdown, and you'll be brought to that page, where you can click any that you like.

              Most registered users (over 99%) don't have more than 8 saved boards, so we made this change with that statistic in mind.

              Finally, I'm not sure what you are referencing in the link you provided. But let me know if you have any more questions. Thanks!

              Dave MP

              1. re: Dave MP
                huiray RE: Dave MP Jun 15, 2012 04:25 PM

                Yes, I'm aware that I can have more than 8 saved boards, thanks. I was referring to the drop-down menu, however.

                The link I posted indicated that back in Sept 2011 it was NOT the intent to have those tabbed boards "go away".

                1. re: Dave MP
                  kaleokahu RE: Dave MP Jun 27, 2012 06:29 PM

                  Hi, Dave:

                  From my perspective it wasn't broken, and now you've fixed it. The change has added clicks, and the worst kind--the ones you have to go looking for.

                  Ironically, IMO the change gives the site a *less* polished look and feel.

                  My 2 Cents,

                  1. re: kaleokahu
                    magiesmom RE: kaleokahu Jun 28, 2012 05:45 AM

                    I agree. Why add more clicks?

                    1. re: kaleokahu
                      drewskiSF RE: kaleokahu Jun 28, 2012 11:08 AM

                      agreed. more clicks and now a painful blue.

                      can you guys at least match the darker blue that the other links are displaying?

                  2. re: huiray
                    breakfastfan RE: huiray Jun 30, 2012 05:52 PM

                    Another no...extra clicks to get to my saved boards and not seeing all my saved boards is going (has already) make me spend less time on this site. FWIW
                    I don't post often but read almost daily.

                  3. re: Dave MP
                    cwdonald RE: Dave MP Jun 28, 2012 04:07 AM

                    Dave- thanks for the explanation. How does this make my user experience better if I have to go searching for boards, and I have less easy access. It appears that the functionality doesn't solve any problems, but really just takes away easy navigation, especially for people that have more than 8 boards save, who I would suggest are probably your biggest users. Just because we are small, doesnt mean that we do not actually use and contribute more.

                    1. re: cwdonald
                      huiray RE: cwdonald Jun 28, 2012 05:52 AM

                      I concur.

                      In addition, the drop-down menu items (the 9 boards plus the "all boards" on either side of the drop-down) do not have control-click [nor, presumably, right-click] properties for calling up one's computer/OS sub/contextual menu to allow opening one's selection in another tab or window. One HAS to allow the current browser window to go to the new selected board(s). This is another limitation in my view, as I have always found it very useful to have different threads open in separate tabs or windows. I usually end up choosing 'My Profile' or "Chowhound Discussions" or "Chowhound" just above the OP panel contextually just to get to another tab or window before I navigate to the desired board or another thread. So the number of steps/clicks needed to open other boards/threads in a separate tab is no different than before.

                      BTW, @Dave MP or Engineering: The shrinking of the "directory tree' or "path" to the thread being viewed, shown just above the OP (as I mentioned above in this post) is now so small, and in a color so pale it is hard to see, that when the change occurred recently I initially thought it was gone as I didn't even notice the current tininess of it until a little later when I finally noticed it.

                      1. re: huiray
                        Quine RE: huiray Jun 28, 2012 06:10 AM

                        What browser are you using? I use Chrome and have all the right click options working fine. I also like to click open into multiple tabs.

                        1. re: Quine
                          huiray RE: Quine Jun 28, 2012 06:47 AM

                          Yes, it works in Chrome - but I usually use FF. I run an all-Mac household. Most used is a 17-inch MBP Dual Processor. On FF the list of boards *within* that drop-down menu do not have contextual menu availability for me - all other links on the page do, including the "Chowhound Discussions" link from which the drop-down descends.

                          1. re: huiray
                            Dave MP RE: huiray Jun 28, 2012 02:43 PM

                            I'm using Firefox on a Mac, and am successfully right-clicking (and command+clicking) my Saved Boards, to open them in a new tab.

                            1. re: Dave MP
                              Quine RE: Dave MP Jun 28, 2012 02:59 PM

                              But, I think what he is saying that if you right click "recipes", "blog" or "chowhound discussions" themselves (without dropping down yet) can you launch that in a different tab? I can, but it seems huiray cannot.

                              1. re: Quine
                                huiray RE: Quine Jun 28, 2012 10:44 PM

                                No, I was saying that I could not double-finger-touchpad-tap or control-click/control-tap (both equivalent to right-click on a PC) on any of the boards including my saved boards within the drop-down menu that appears when I hover my cursor over "Chowhound Discussions" (and then move my cursor down into the drop-down menu). I could do so for every other link on the page, including the "Recipes", "Blog" and "Chowhound Discussions" links themselves [i.e. not the drop-down menus], the threads under "Related Discussions", etc.

                                However, as I write this, I now can control-click/control-tap etc within that drop-down menu for some of the boards. Something changed between when I first posted and now. I am pretty sure it did not work for me this morning and previously, at least for the "saved boards" I previously clicked on - but I can't swear I tried every selection in the drop-down repeatedly and persistently. However, now after a *lot* of repeated trials on my FF, control-click works erratically for the 1st board in the menu ("All Boards" and "My Saved Boards") and the 4th board on both sides; does not work for the 2nd and 3rd boards on either side except on two tries, I think; and works for the 5th to 9th boards on both sides. This pattern persists after restarting FF, dumping the cache and restarting FF, rebooting the computer, etc. BTW this pattern also holds for me (in FF) for selections within the "Videos", "Recipes" and "Blogs" drop-down menus too.

                                Interestingly, on an old version of Safari, when I control-click on the 1st, 2nd and 3rd boards on either side of this drop-down menu I get the contextual menu for Adobe Flash Player. Control-clicking on the 4th through 9th boards give the expected contextual menu for "open in a new tab" etc. Same thing for the 1st through 3rd selections in the drop-down menus for "Videos", "Recipes" and "Blogs" (which has just 2 selections).
                                [In FF I don't get the Flash contextual menu when I control-click on the 1st, 2nd & 3rd selections in the drop-down menus - either I get the proper contextual menu (for the 1st selection, sometimes) or nothing happens]

                                In Chrome, the correct contextual menu is called up for all boards/selections in the drop-down menus.

                                1. re: huiray
                                  Quine RE: huiray Jun 29, 2012 12:49 PM

                                  That is surely crazy making. I personally use a laptop but hate the touchpad, bad for the hands, etc. wireless mouse for me.

                                  1. re: huiray
                                    Melanie Wong RE: huiray Jun 29, 2012 02:09 PM

                                    Yes, I'm having some trouble getting the menu to drop down and getting a response when I click on the desired board name as well. Just noticed that if the banner ad has not completely loaded, none of those work. And on pages where there is no banner ad, the links work fine.

                                    1. re: Melanie Wong
                                      Dave MP RE: Melanie Wong Jun 29, 2012 02:34 PM

                                      I'm seeing this too now (but only in Firefox). It seems like it might be that when there's a flash ad, the bug is happening, but when there's no banner ad (or a non-flash banner ad), it's not.

                                      Melanie and others, am I correct that you were *not* seeing this bug in Safari or Chrome?

                                      1. re: Dave MP
                                        Melanie Wong RE: Dave MP Jun 29, 2012 02:41 PM

                                        I'm seeing it in Firefox, haven't checked Safari or Chrome.

                                    2. re: huiray
                                      Engineering RE: huiray Jun 29, 2012 03:55 PM

                                      This appears to be a bug with Flash Player which is specific to Firefox on Mac OS. We've verified it in Firefox 13.0.1 with Flash Player 11.3.300.257, the latest release for both. We have logged a bug with Adobe which you can track here: https://bugbase.adobe.com/index.cfm?e...

                                      1. re: Engineering
                                        huiray RE: Engineering Jun 29, 2012 05:01 PM

                                        Thank you.
                                        Please do update us here on progress as it occurs, if you could.

                                        1. re: Engineering
                                          huiray RE: Engineering Oct 19, 2012 10:54 PM


                                          I'm running FF 16.0.1 now, and the Flash bug is still present. Has there been any response from Adobe?

                                          1. re: huiray
                                            Engineering RE: huiray Oct 22, 2012 10:13 AM

                                            Comments on the bug can be viewed at the bottom of the report linked in my previous post. Based on Adobe's notes there from August, this bug will unfortunately not be a priority for their team unless it receives more attention (eg "votes" for the bug on that page). If you have an Adobe account, feel free to vote for the bug on that page.

                                            1. re: Engineering
                                              huiray RE: Engineering Oct 22, 2012 11:19 AM

                                              Thank you for the reply.

                        2. re: janniecooks
                          Dave MP RE: janniecooks Jun 21, 2012 02:03 PM

                          We've updated the names of a few boards to shorten them....probably the one that most people will notice is a change from "General Chowhounding Topics" back to "General Topics."

                          This means that all board names will appear on a single line in the Chowhound dropdown menu, which should solve the problem with the bottom board name getting cut off. If anyone is still seeing this happening, let us know!

                          Another result of this is that there's now room for users to have up to 9 saved boards in their dropdown. They will still be in alphabetical order.


                          Dave MP

                          1. re: Dave MP
                            huiray RE: Dave MP Jun 21, 2012 04:30 PM

                            Yes, the "General Topics" shortening helped. But now five of my saved boards appear in bold type (larger & thicker font) in the drop-down menu. What's the reason for it? Due to their taking up a little more space, the bottom board name in my panel is slightly clipped at the bottom.

                            1. re: huiray
                              The Dairy Queen RE: huiray Jun 22, 2012 08:36 AM

                              I, too, am curious why some boards are bolded and some are not...


                              1. re: The Dairy Queen
                                Caitlin McGrath RE: The Dairy Queen Jun 22, 2012 08:45 AM

                                No board names appear in bold on my drop-down menu, and none are clipped at the bottom, nor were any last night after the adjustment to board names.

                                1. re: Caitlin McGrath
                                  JoanN RE: Caitlin McGrath Jun 22, 2012 09:26 AM

                                  Philadelphia, Greater Boston, Southern New England, and B.C. (including Vancouver) are all very slightly (almost unnoticeably) bolder than the other entries for me. Not sure I would have realized it if it hadn’t been pointed out.

                              2. re: huiray
                                carolinadawg RE: huiray Jun 22, 2012 09:24 AM

                                Same here. All but 2 of my boards are bolded, and the last one is cut in half.

                                1. re: carolinadawg
                                  Dave MP RE: carolinadawg Jun 22, 2012 11:33 AM

                                  We're aware of the bold bug, and should be fixing it soon. carolinadawg and huiray, it might be helpful to know what browser you're using (and whether you have the same issue in a different browser)

                                  1. re: Dave MP
                                    huiray RE: Dave MP Jun 22, 2012 12:30 PM

                                    Yes, it does seem to be browser-dependent too. The problem tends to persist on an older version of Safari. Firefox and Chrome do not show it, at least in recent days - I can't swear that it was never there on these latter two browsers.

                                    1. re: Dave MP
                                      Quine RE: Dave MP Jun 22, 2012 04:44 PM

                                      Running Chrome and no bold or clipping. Not even when you first changed it.

                                      1. re: Dave MP
                                        meatme RE: Dave MP Jun 22, 2012 08:00 PM

                                        WinXP/IE8, in both columns of the drop-down.

                                        1. re: Dave MP
                                          carolinadawg RE: Dave MP Jun 23, 2012 05:21 AM

                                          Win XP/IE6 on one computer, will have to check the other computer.

                                    2. re: Dave MP
                                      meatme RE: Dave MP Jun 21, 2012 06:17 PM

                                      That's an interesting case of the tail wagging the dog, but thanks. it also improves the display of the Hot Posts "Switch Boards" pull-down.

                                  2. l
                                    LAWoman RE: mudaba Jun 15, 2012 03:33 PM

                                    When I jump on Chowhound, I'm here to see unread posts for a small selection of favorite boards. The dropdown would be SO much more useful if I could choose my saved boards and then go to the dropdown menu and ONLY see unread posts for those boards.

                                    1. carolinadawg RE: mudaba Jun 16, 2012 04:40 AM

                                      Is it possible to have the drop down work on an iPad?

                                      9 Replies
                                      1. re: carolinadawg
                                        E Eto RE: carolinadawg Jun 16, 2012 04:20 PM

                                        Yes, it doesn't seem to work on a touchscreen environment. I still rely on the "choose a board" selection to navigate. Not sure how I'll navigate on my tablet once that's gone.

                                        1. re: carolinadawg
                                          Engineering RE: carolinadawg Jun 18, 2012 09:52 AM

                                          We were made aware of the issue in http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/8541... and hope to have the iPad dropdowns working correctly soon. Our apologies for inconvenience until we do.

                                          1. re: Engineering
                                            RB Hound RE: Engineering Jun 18, 2012 02:15 PM

                                            Typically on web sites, when you see an indication of a drop down menu, you click on it to have it open up. Having it automatically open on mouse over is normal, too, but if you click on it by habit it should not do something whacky if nothing is selected.

                                            To be specific, if the mouse pointer is above "Chowhound Discussions", and you click on it, it should either open the list of choices or do nothing. Right now, clicking in that scenario brings up the "Latest Chowhound Posts" page. That sort of behavior is not standard, in any sense.

                                            This is a very picky point, and either way one can get used to the way things work, but in my opinion it generally is better to make things behave in a more standard fashion. User interface 101 and all that... :)

                                            1. re: RB Hound
                                              mudaba RE: RB Hound Jun 18, 2012 02:18 PM

                                              Hi RB Hound, Are you referring to the iPad dropdown or desktop? If desktop, what do you mean by "above Chowhound discussions"? If you click the "Chowhound Discussions" button, it takes you to the homepage. If you scroll down to the top of the dropdown, the first option is "See All Boards," and clicking that takes you to the all boards page. Just want to make sure I understand what you're referring to. Thanks.

                                              1. re: mudaba
                                                RB Hound RE: mudaba Jun 18, 2012 02:27 PM

                                                Desktop/laptop computer, and I am talking about it going to the home page ("Latest Chowhound Discussions"), not the all boards page (I have since edited my post). From an interface point of view, a drop down menu generally has no option for the title of the menu - clicking on that title should open or close the drop down. You've made it a mouse over menu, effectively an "overload" option. My point is that this is not very standard behavior for web sites.

                                                Like I said, one can get used to it, but it's...abnormal.

                                                Edit: in the first 3 choices for menus (Videos, Recipes, and Blogs), clicking on the menu title takes you to the first item in those menus. Clicking on the "Chowhound Discussions" menu does not take you to the first item in that menu.

                                                1. re: RB Hound
                                                  Quine RE: RB Hound Jun 18, 2012 04:22 PM

                                                  Sounds like the fable of The miller, his son and the donkey.

                                                  Poor Powers that Be, the more you try to make things nicer, better, or easier, the more you get complaints of how you should have done it different.

                                                  1. re: Quine
                                                    huiray RE: Quine Jun 18, 2012 04:30 PM

                                                    Double, double, toil and trouble...

                                                    1. re: Quine
                                                      RB Hound RE: Quine Jun 18, 2012 05:42 PM

                                                      Oh, come on - I was very clear that it was a "very picky point". I hardly think it is a show stopper. Besides, most people in software design like to have feedback.

                                              2. re: Engineering
                                                carolinadawg RE: Engineering Jun 27, 2012 05:52 PM

                                                Working great now on iPad, thanks.

                                            2. JoanN RE: mudaba Jun 16, 2012 04:24 PM

                                              Took me about 15 minutes to find it and another couple of days to get used to it. But I LOVE it. Much clearer. Fewer clicks to get where I want to go. Great improvement. And I thank you.

                                              1. The Dairy Queen RE: mudaba Jun 18, 2012 06:00 PM

                                                Wild, thank you!


                                                1. LNG212 RE: mudaba Jun 19, 2012 07:20 AM

                                                  I didn't think I would but so far I am liking the drop down menu. A lot actually. So thanks for that. I don't like that the "saved" boards are alphabetized but that's a minor quibble. (I'd rather they be grouped by location, topical, etc.)

                                                  Anyway ... the one thing I did want to point out is that this new drop down makes the "back to the top" button again more important. As I've said on pretty much every site talk thread since these changes started a few years ago, the BACK TO THE TOP should take you, well, actually BACK TO THE TOP. Right now, if you hit that button, you are still forced to scroll some more to get to the drop down menu. It would really make sense if the "back to the top" button worked properly.

                                                  And by the way, whatever happened to adding the ability to put "my chow" in the "saved boards"??? That was discussed at length with the last iteration and nothing ever happened.


                                                  3 Replies
                                                  1. re: LNG212
                                                    Quine RE: LNG212 Jun 19, 2012 02:13 PM

                                                    If you use Chrome there is a Scroll to the Top Button extension that works on every site.
                                                    at the Chrome Store (free)

                                                    1. re: Quine
                                                      Caitlin McGrath RE: Quine Jun 19, 2012 06:32 PM

                                                      Thanks very much for that link! I just installed it, and am already thrilled to have it.

                                                      1. re: Quine
                                                        JoanN RE: Quine Jun 20, 2012 04:45 AM

                                                        Had no idea such an add-on existed. Just found Back to Top for Firefox. This will definitely improve my CH experience. Thanks from me, too.

                                                    2. c
                                                      centralpadiner RE: mudaba Jun 27, 2012 06:37 PM

                                                      Obviously I'm in the minority so it doesn't matter anyway, but I've been trying to get used to this for a week and I still really, really don't like it. I don't even like anything about the way it looks. Sorry. I've spent about 1/4 of the time I used to on CH since this began.

                                                      1 Reply
                                                      1. re: centralpadiner
                                                        cwdonald RE: centralpadiner Jun 28, 2012 04:10 AM

                                                        I really agree Centralpadiner. It goes to my fundemental question. What problem was this change supposed to solve. Change for change sake is not always a good thing. Making it harder to move around a site, by making someone click more, look harder or overall discourage use does not seem to be a successful change. Also designing to the average, rather than trying to create a design that maximizes the experience for the most frequent users really leads to alientation rather than improvement.

                                                      2. BiscuitBoy RE: mudaba Jun 28, 2012 06:24 AM

                                                        streamlined? Not really....seems just to be a change for change's sake...or for more adspace?

                                                        1. BlueOx RE: mudaba Jun 28, 2012 06:58 AM

                                                          It sucks!

                                                          1 Reply
                                                          1. re: BlueOx
                                                            Harters RE: BlueOx Jun 28, 2012 07:28 AM

                                                            +1. Particulary on no longer having your saved boards on view. It's tiresome but, no doubt, we'll all put up with it.

                                                          2. a
                                                            alwayshungrygal RE: mudaba Jun 28, 2012 01:10 PM

                                                            I didn't know about the change until today, til the Choose A Board disappeared. The new way is a royal PITA. I'm not usually disgruntled, but this does appear to me to be "change just for the sake of change."

                                                            We'll all get used to it, eventually, then you'll come up with another reason to change it again. Looking forward to that....not.

                                                            1 Reply
                                                            1. re: alwayshungrygal
                                                              writergeek313 RE: alwayshungrygal Jun 29, 2012 06:22 AM

                                                              I agree. The design isn't streamlined--it's awkward. If you've made it harder for me to get to the content I want, I'm probably going to spend less time on the site.

                                                            2. d
                                                              dmjordan RE: mudaba Jun 29, 2012 07:25 AM

                                                              I don't know if anyone mentioned this already but why are on the left side are there regional boards ? This limits the number of boards one could save. If someone wanted the Manhattan board, for instance, they could just make it one of there saved boards. Why does everyone have to have that as a choice?

                                                              1. Karl S RE: mudaba Jun 29, 2012 01:29 PM

                                                                Is this what I noticed today - that my saved boards longer automatically display along the top so I can toggle easily? Because the change stinks.....

                                                                1. m
                                                                  marti RE: mudaba Jun 29, 2012 01:37 PM

                                                                  This has to be the most stupid, annoying change ever! It takes twice as long to go on a site and the whole website has slowed to a crawl. I,for one, do not plan to go on site if this is a permanent change. It might work for very much higher level readers than I am, but it sure is not worth my time to struggle though the process. It really sucks!!

                                                                  1. mudaba RE: mudaba Jun 29, 2012 02:01 PM

                                                                    We're working on a change to the dropdown to make it easier for users with saved boards to see their saved boards. Your feedback is helpful when it's specific: i.e., "I would like to see my saved boards very clearly" or "I want to save more than 9 boards." We have a change in the works to address that feedback that will go live on the site in the next couple of weeks.

                                                                    Thanks, Meredith

                                                                    4 Replies
                                                                    1. re: mudaba
                                                                      centralpadiner RE: mudaba Jun 29, 2012 02:47 PM

                                                                      If you are looking for specific suggestions, I think the "most popular boards" on the left are unnecessary. I would much rather be able to have 16 saved boards that I can see quickly. While not as nice having to use a pull-down rather than being able to keep all of my saved boards open at the top of the page, it would be an improvement over the current situation for the way I use the site.

                                                                      1. re: centralpadiner
                                                                        JoanN RE: centralpadiner Jun 29, 2012 04:26 PM

                                                                        As the only person on the site who seems to like the pull-down menu, I agree that the left side is useless to those outside of the designated areas. Can't imagine I would ever want 16 saved boards, but I appreciate the argument.

                                                                      2. re: mudaba
                                                                        cwdonald RE: mudaba Jun 30, 2012 04:52 AM

                                                                        My one other complaint is the sort order. Prior, (and correct me if I am wrong) the order the boards appeared at the top of the page was a function of the order I saved them. Now its alphabetical order. I wold love to be able to customize the order the boards appear in the drop down men (assuming I am stuck with the drop down men.........)

                                                                        1. re: mudaba
                                                                          breakfastfan RE: mudaba Jun 30, 2012 06:09 PM

                                                                          I would like ALL my saved boards seen. I don't view this site as juch as I did before the change. FWIW, I am a daily reader and infrequent poster.

                                                                        2. h
                                                                          HillJ RE: mudaba Jun 29, 2012 05:10 PM

                                                                          How about doing away with the left side altogether and placing the ALL BOARDS before the MY SAVED BOARDS at the top of each personal board profile so users can easily access the All Boards list to check out randomly or add new boards to their personal list. That way there is one drop down that accommodates all options with room to add to the list.

                                                                          4 Replies
                                                                          1. re: HillJ
                                                                            JoanN RE: HillJ Jun 29, 2012 05:14 PM

                                                                            Makes a lot of sense, HillU. Until I hear something better, I'd buy into that.

                                                                            1. re: HillJ
                                                                              drewskiSF RE: HillJ Jun 29, 2012 07:22 PM

                                                                              that doesn't make sense at all.

                                                                              what's the point of Saved Boards if they don't have priority over All Boards?

                                                                              might as well get rid of Saved Boards completely then, no?

                                                                              i like the idea of combining into one list, but IMO, saved should be the priority.

                                                                              1. re: drewskiSF
                                                                                HillJ RE: drewskiSF Jun 29, 2012 07:58 PM

                                                                                LOL...that took all of 34 mins. Well, drewski however the powers that be decide to play around with the new drop down I hope they are able to please 50% of the CH population cause it's never easy. Saved Boards, All Boards...who gives a dang what order its in...as long as the navigation is fun & easy to use.

                                                                                1. re: HillJ
                                                                                  drewskiSF RE: HillJ Jun 30, 2012 10:11 AM

                                                                                  +1 :)

                                                                            2. j
                                                                              Joebob RE: mudaba Jun 29, 2012 05:30 PM

                                                                              The damned twitchy thing is driving me nuts!

                                                                              1. s
                                                                                SherBel RE: mudaba Jun 30, 2012 10:05 AM

                                                                                I don't like the changes because they make navigation more difficult; adding clicks is never an improvement.

                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                1. re: SherBel
                                                                                  Karl S RE: SherBel Jun 30, 2012 11:05 AM

                                                                                  +1. It's a mystery why any intelligent design would make such a change, other than to manipulate page counts upward.

                                                                                2. kaleokahu RE: mudaba Jun 30, 2012 03:56 PM

                                                                                  This afternoon, the banner ad immediately below the Discussions dropdown started masking the top half of my saved boards. Worse yet, when you mouse down to try to access the few boards that remain, it breaks the link, prompting a version of Whack-A-Mole.

                                                                                  Please just change it back to the way it was?

                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                  1. re: kaleokahu
                                                                                    breakfastfan RE: kaleokahu Jun 30, 2012 06:10 PM


                                                                                  2. j
                                                                                    John Francis RE: mudaba Jul 6, 2012 07:06 AM

                                                                                    The CHOWHOUND drop-down menu is inadequate. It lists only 9 of the discussion groups out of more than 75, and the odds are strongly against any of the 9 being what the user actually wants to see. So we have to go through an extra step, clicking on All, before we can begin to find what we're looking for.

                                                                                    If 75 options are too many for the drop-down menu, it should include many more than it does - the way the old Discussions menu used to do - before requiring the user to click All. And a multicolumn horizontal layout, again like the old design, will put more choices on the screen without the user having to scroll down as he now must.

                                                                                    As my old boss used to say when somebody brought him unsatisfactory work, it's OK to do over.

                                                                                    18 Replies
                                                                                    1. re: John Francis
                                                                                      Dave MP RE: John Francis Jul 6, 2012 09:27 AM

                                                                                      Hi John Francis,

                                                                                      You can customize boards that appear in your Saved Boards dropdown, which will allow you to quickly access the boards you visit frequently. To save a board, click the star next to the board name. Then you'll see it appear in the dropdown called "My Saved Boards"

                                                                                      Hope this helps,
                                                                                      Dave MP

                                                                                      1. re: Dave MP
                                                                                        John Francis RE: Dave MP Jul 6, 2012 11:59 AM

                                                                                        i know that, Dave, but it isn't what I'm talking about, which is the other dropdown menu, under CHOWHOUND, which I say is poorly designed - it may suit the convenience of the designer but not of us users.

                                                                                        But since you brought up MY SAVED BOARDS, how many saved boards can be listed on the dropdown menu before it runs out of space? The right answer is, "as many as there are," but I suspect the actual answer may be ten.

                                                                                        1. re: John Francis
                                                                                          Dave MP RE: John Francis Jul 6, 2012 12:18 PM

                                                                                          The answer is actually as many as you want!

                                                                                          I currently have 15 saved, just to test this out. Like I've mentioned elsewhere, we know that less than 1% of our users have more than 8 saved boards...so it's not an issue for most people.

                                                                                          1. re: Dave MP
                                                                                            John Francis RE: Dave MP Jul 8, 2012 03:36 AM

                                                                                            That's great! I have 9 saved boards now and expect to add more, and I want to see them all.

                                                                                            But as I said, what I'm mainly asking about is the CHOWHOUND dropdown menu, which is what this thread is about. And neither you nor mudaba has acknowledged that question, let alone answered it. Maybe there's a response elsewhere in the thread?

                                                                                            1. re: John Francis
                                                                                              drewskiSF RE: John Francis Jul 8, 2012 09:21 AM

                                                                                              not that it directly addresses your question on the design decision, but in it's first implementation, the Chowhound dropdown menu combined both a user's Saved Boards as well as the main list so the thread was covering both.

                                                                                          2. re: John Francis
                                                                                            mudaba RE: John Francis Jul 6, 2012 01:29 PM

                                                                                            Hello John Francis,

                                                                                            Our goal is to make the design suit all of our users: those who are logged in and have many saved boards, as well as new users who are not logged in and who are still familiarizing themselves with how the site works. There are many different types of users of Chowhound, and we are working to address the needs of as many as we can.

                                                                                            I mention this because I think that it's important that everyone on the site be aware that we are incredibly attuned to user needs, but it may not always be the same needs as yours specifically.



                                                                                            1. re: mudaba
                                                                                              Quine RE: mudaba Jul 6, 2012 02:44 PM

                                                                                              Good reply! It is somehow very funny to me, that on a food specific site, where one is either a diner or a cook, that people complain about an extra (which I have not found to be true) Click.
                                                                                              That somehow sounds like "I had to chew that 2 chews more" or "I had to lift my fork one more time" even "I had to make 2 slices to make it into quarters! So "fix it". LOL, really.

                                                                                              1. re: Quine
                                                                                                cwdonald RE: Quine Jul 7, 2012 09:15 AM

                                                                                                We complain about a click because the extra click is unnecessary. We complain because we see little benefit in the changes, and more hassle. These are very human reactions to change. I have see the same reactions in corporate environments where changes are made, which ultimately benefit the people that maintain an application, but do not benefit the end users. So if changes are going to help the back office, or you believe that they are a better design. TELL US. We may disagree, but transparency about motivation will go a long way to reducing the number of complaints. It also actually might elicit other suggestions on how to do things differently or more efficiently.

                                                                                                1. re: cwdonald
                                                                                                  Quine RE: cwdonald Jul 7, 2012 02:31 PM

                                                                                                  But I do not even see where, this mysterious extra click comes in, in fact, this new version loses a click for me.
                                                                                                  Old way : Click, expand boards, click on the board I want. (two clicks)
                                                                                                  New way: hover over saved boards, click on the one I want. (one click)

                                                                                                  Every time this site makes a change, there are scads of complaints. I am beginning to believe foodsters are adverse to change.

                                                                                                  1. re: Quine
                                                                                                    carolinadawg RE: Quine Jul 7, 2012 03:59 PM

                                                                                                    Virtually all humans are adverse to change.

                                                                                                    In regard to the site, on the "old" site, my saved boards were always expanded when I opened the site, so no click was needed to do so.

                                                                                                    1. re: carolinadawg
                                                                                                      Quine RE: carolinadawg Jul 7, 2012 04:16 PM

                                                                                                      So it is still only one click then, for you.
                                                                                                      And actually, some people thrive on change and like to learn new things and ways, yes, even new recipes and food.

                                                                                                      If all humans were adverse to change, we would still be drawing on stone, with burnt sticks. Viva those who love change, for they are the inventors, the creators. Progress would not exist without them.

                                                                                                      1. re: Quine
                                                                                                        carolinadawg RE: Quine Jul 7, 2012 07:05 PM

                                                                                                        I agree...your snark is misplaced. Notice I didnt say "all". Without those who embrace change, most human progress would never have been made. Nonetheless, I stand by my observation.

                                                                                                        1. re: carolinadawg
                                                                                                          Quine RE: carolinadawg Jul 7, 2012 07:21 PM

                                                                                                          And I stand by the fact that for you, still, only one click is needed, as before, so why is "virtually" everyone so upset?

                                                                                                          1. re: Quine
                                                                                                            carolinadawg RE: Quine Jul 7, 2012 07:33 PM

                                                                                                            Because, as I said, most humans don't adapt well to change.

                                                                                                    2. re: Quine
                                                                                                      centralpadiner RE: Quine Jul 8, 2012 08:47 AM

                                                                                                      Actually, I never had to click to "expand boards," my saved boards stayed open all the time - made navigating around to my favorites very easy.

                                                                                                  2. re: Quine
                                                                                                    John Francis RE: Quine Jul 8, 2012 03:44 AM


                                                                                                    It's not about physical effort - obvioously. It's about making basic information about the site, i.e. the scope and content of the discussion boards, as visible and easily accessible as possible. Which I'd have thought is basically what web site design is for.

                                                                                                    The extra click comes in under CHOWHOUND. Before, users had a much better overview of the boards' major categories and the actual names of more of the boards. Now we see the names of 9 randomly chosen discussion boards, plus All It's necessary to click on All to get a full list, and then to scroll through the whole long list to get to Topical - if one has reason to expect such a category in the first place. Experienced Hounds like me who know what's here, thanks to the old menu system, will persevere. Others? Often not, I expect.

                                                                                                    1. re: John Francis
                                                                                                      Quine RE: John Francis Jul 8, 2012 08:51 AM

                                                                                                      As an experienced CHound myself (and it looks like we have both been posting the same amount of time), I have seen *every single change* made, even in the slightest form, become a huge topic of moan and groan.

                                                                                                      We will Always have users who cannot navigate the site, easily and quickly on first use. Again, this week, another NEW poster made a post here in Site Talk about a cookware issue. So What's your answer for that? They navigated the drop down menu, quite well enough to find Site Talk.

                                                                                                      Not one person here, besides you, who has moaned and groaned about this change, has,even once, thought of new users. They only expressed dramatic pain over an additional click. These folks know full well, what boards exist, they are just complaining.
                                                                                                      As to the " names of 9 randomly chosen discussion boards," are you kidding? Randomly chosen? The first is "all" Then a topical "Home Cooking" the rest are major regional marketplaces. I do not see that as random at all. Fact, it looks quite Yelpish.

                                                                                                      What is interesting, and I am surprised that no one has picked up on this, is how much of our personal data here is being mined and used? Dave MP, right in this very topic states "Most registered users (over 99%) don't have more than 8 saved boards, so we made this change with that statistic in mind." Hum, how much deeper are TPTB looking at our data and for what uses?

                                                                                                      1. re: John Francis
                                                                                                        LNG212 RE: John Francis Jul 8, 2012 11:25 AM

                                                                                                        "the names of 9 randomly chosen discussion boards" ...

                                                                                                        Actually, the mods/chow team/whoever made the changes said much earlier on that these aren't randomly chosen names. They appear in order of popularity of the board. The Home Cooking board, for example, has long been known as the most traffic-ed board. So they are the most highly used board and not random at all, from what I understand.

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