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Changes to Design on Wednesday, Dec 12

Hello everyone,

Here are the changes we made today in response to your feedback about the new design.

1. We made the "To the Top" button take you all the way to the top of the page, not just to the initial post.

2. We increased the number of discussions on the category page to 25, up from 20 on mobile as well as desktop.

3. We reduced the font size and padding of the discussion listings on the category page.

4. We changed the username at the upper righthand corner of the page to be in the capcase that users chose instead of all caps. We also changed the username capcase at the top of discussions, where it says, "Latest Less Than A Minute Ago by Mudaba" e.g.

5. Fixed issues with fonts looking too small in the text input fields on Windows and some Firefox browsers.

6. Fixed a bug on the mobile site that was affecting the edit button.



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  1. 1. THANK YOU!
    2. THANK YOU!
    3. THANK YOU!
    4. Noticed that just changed. Didn't bother me.
    5. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    6. Don't use mobile CH except on my Kindle (and haven't tried it after the re-design), so hadn't yet affected me.

    As you might imagine, the fix to #5 is most welcome for me. Thanks.

        1. any chance the "reply to OP" button will return?

          and why only 25 threads per page? was 50 really too cluttered?

          1 Reply
          1. #3 -- Much improved, thanks!

              1. Oh, and #5 -- much better. I didn't even notice, because it was no longer bugging me!

                1. AND thank you for we are now typing replies in an easy to read font and SIZE .....thank you

                  1. Re: #1 Are there plans to have a "To the Top" on the list of threads pages in a category, not just in a thread? Would be very handy not just when I'm reading via my desktop computer, but also via my iPod/iPad.

                    4 Replies
                    1. re: Stephanie Wong

                      Thanks for the feedback Stephanie. I wanted to point out just because I thought you might be interested, that if you tap on the top bar on your iPod/iPad, the one with the signal bars, time, &/or battery levels, it zooms back to the top of any webpage. This is an iOS feature, not something we did, so you can use it anywhere.

                      1. re: meshane

                        I have now learned my new thing for the day.

                        1. re: meshane

                          Wow! What a great feature that I never knew about. Thank you!

                        2. 20:38 I now have some surprise contrast as well as size changes on my profile page

                          1. Thank you, especially for #1.

                              1. Thanks for making the font smaller on the discussion list page. That was my main complaint.

                                1. Grateful to have been heard on many counts, if not all.

                                  Still not loving the look. there is something very nit-picky i want to point out: when you are looking at a thread where there are a lot of unread replies (any WFD thread, for example), and they now show previews in gray, you will note that the name to the left is a very light gray. the preview is a slightly darker gray. when you're scrolling down the list, the very light gray of the names creates a blur that is really annoying/tiring to the eye. i swear i'm not a nitpicker usually!! isn't there any way that alone can be changed to black, or at the very least (since it seems CH has decided it will not budge off its gray stance - which i'm sorry, still just feels like stubbornness for its own sake) the same gray as the previews? or darker?

                                  i know, this really is minutiae... but try scrolling down a very full thread with a lot of previously read replies and you'll see what i mean.

                                  and thanks, again, for hearing us.

                                  1. Every one of these changes is an improvement. Thanks for the rapid response.

                                    1. Nice work, especially the font fixes and putting more topics per page. Thanks for being so responsive to suggestions.

                                      1. Thanks for the swift response. Greatly appreciated.

                                        1. Things look much much better than when the changes were first rolled out. I'd still like more discussions to show on the category page and the gray tones are not my fav but all in all, improvement. Thanks.

                                          1. Thank you Meredith. IMO:

                                            2. 25 is still not nearly enough.
                                            3. Yes. Thank you! This was important.
                                            5. Thank you -- it was almost painful before.

                                            As mentioned before, I like the gray-on-gray to differentiate what's been read, but darker gray type would make it more readable.

                                            Regarding the reply function:
                                            1. When I clicked the blue "reply" button, nothing happened. It took me a minute to figure out that I could just type in the small window, and it would expand. Now I know, but new users might give up.
                                            2. This reply window seems a bit small for some of us verbose folk who might like to see more than 9 very narrow lines of our posts at once as we compose them. This post took up over two full fields in the window, for example.

                                            All that said, I for one appreciate the quick response and fixes. Now at least the site is again usable for me, and I can poke around and see what else is wrong with the new design. ;o)

                                            Just retried the post edit function; type is still a bit small for good readability.

                                            1. Hi, Meredith:

                                              Re: #2... This helps. Increasing the threads-per-page from 20 to 25 (aka, reducing the font size) means, e.g., on Cookware, the total pages are 470 vs. 580. I can now see 7 threads at a glance, up from 5.

                                              IMO, adjusting threads-per-page up another 5--to 30--would be even better.


                                              2 Replies
                                              1. re: kaleokahu

                                                I think it would help if the page choices at the bottom showed "1,2.3.4,...next" instead of "2, ...1305,1306, 1307, next"

                                                I really don't care about what is on page 1305 and if i'm searching something recent I'd rather click on a specific page number than having to go to page 2 before I can go to page 3.

                                                1. re: jcattles

                                                  Hi, jcattles:

                                                  I don't particularly care about page numbers, either. But they're a good measure of the hassle value of the large fonts--if we can (within reason) maximize the number of threads per page and hence view per static screen, the number of pages drops dramatically. As does the hassle of scrolling and loading new pages.

                                                  But you have, perhaps unwittingly, made an excellent suggestion: Why not have a feature that gives you the *page* number along with the link when we do a search? That would give search results more context.

                                                  EDIT: Oh, I see what you mean! Yes, I agree, with one alteration: It should go "1, 2, 3, 4, 5 of 1325, NEXT (loads pp. 6-10), END (which loads 1320-1325)" It's a pain otherwise.


                                              2. 1. I still feel like the fonts on category pages are too big. I typically only look at one page, I don't have time to scroll through 2-3 pages on each board I follow. It would be nice if you would add even more discussions in a smaller font.

                                                2. The color scheme really hurts my eyes. Even with the sight modification. I cannot read more than a couple of minutes before I need to get up and walk away to rest my eyes. It causes eye strain, blurriness, headaches,& nausea. I use my computer for at least 7 hours a day and have to stay away from Chowhound because it make me feel sick. No other site I use does this to me. Please consider modifying the colors again to something easier to read.
                                                3. I miss the "reply to original post" button. There are times I want to read the entire thread, then respond. I liked having that option on any response.

                                                1. Good work — thank you. The new design works great on an iPad.

                                                  1. The layout of "My Activity" on my profile page is now hosed. Things just aren't in the right place. The other profile tabs seem to display correctly. I use an iPad.

                                                    1. I've been checking back in here & there to see if you all have made changes, and first I'd like to say THANK YOU for being so responsive to everyone's complaints. It looks like you're moving in the right direction. However:
                                                      - I'm still having major issues with the "snowblindness" effect - there's just too much glare and wasted blank space.
                                                      - The abundance of gray in the read/collapsed posts is seriously straining to the eyes as well.
                                                      - While you did increase the number of threads visible per page, I'd love to see you reduce the padding further to allow for even more threads per page.
                                                      - I don't understand why that button with the number of replies for each thread is so LARGE - it draws the eye even more than the text does, which just seems silly to me. I'm far more interested in knowing *who* has replied than I am in knowing how many people have.
                                                      - The textured skin is really distracting - as several of us have mentioned, it just makes you think the screen is dusty/dirty.
                                                      - I agree with jcattles that it would be much more useful to have lower numbers to click on to get to earlier "next pages" instead of having to navigate to each one in succession.

                                                      Thanks for listening, and please keep up the improvements!

                                                      2 Replies
                                                      1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                                        Wow, now that you say it, I've noticed the textured skin, too. And it totally looks like the screen is dusty.


                                                        1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                                          "I've been checking back in here & there to see if you all have made changes, and first I'd like to say THANK YOU for being so responsive to everyone's complaints. It looks like you're moving in the right direction. However:
                                                          - I'm still having major issues with the "snowblindness" effect - there's just too much glare and wasted blank space."

                                                          I'm also appreciative of the changes and improvements made in response to user feedback.

                                                          I, too, still have the same kind of snowblindness/discomfort with this interface, though the dusty looking texture doesn't bother me much.

                                                        2. Thanks for these changes, especially #3 and #5. I'm prone to writing longish replies, and the tiny type was a killer. I agree with others, that 25 threads/discussions per page is an improvement over 20, but more would be still better.

                                                          Dave MP stated that a goal of this redesign was to make the site look more contemporary. If that's the case, why is Chow so intent on keeping everything black, grey and white? Monochromatic is television in the 1950's. It's PCs when they first came out in the early 1980's. A JUDICIOUS use of color (e.g., different light colored backgrounds for read and unread posts) would make the site easier to look at and navigate, as well as give it a more modern appearance.

                                                          2 Replies
                                                          1. re: cheesemaestro

                                                            so agree with this re the colors/modernity - this feels like a Soviet-era site. especially with the snowblindness!

                                                            1. re: cheesemaestro

                                                              I was *VERY* thankful last night that the tiny type font was bumped up while I was writing the Top Chef recap. Having it in Times New Roman 12 made it much easier to type, read, and correct.

                                                            2. PS: you may have (ever so slightly) expanded the threads on the "category" page to 25, but when one goes to the following page, the first few threads are the same as on the first, meaning you see them not just on the home board, but also on the next page.

                                                              please, please, please change that.

                                                              4 Replies
                                                              1. re: linguafood

                                                                I'm not able to reproduce that bug at this time. Are you seeing this consistently? How much time elapsed between loading the first page and the second?

                                                                1. re: Engineering

                                                                  interesting. doesn't happen anymore now. perhaps a bug that's been fixed in the meantime.

                                                                  1. re: linguafood

                                                                    If 10 new threads have been bumped between your visit to the first page and second page, they would push 10 threads from page 1 to page 2 of the boards. If it was a while between your visit to page 1 and page 2, this is most likely what happened.

                                                                    1. re: meshane

                                                                      it was immediately after.

                                                                      and for some reason, i STILL (if briefly) get the gray "replying to...." in the reply field, typing over it making letter salad.

                                                                      it doesn't last long, but it sucks to look at.

                                                              2. Font size of post text is too small. I'm getting a headache from reading. Not happy with redesign.

                                                                Make it the same as the size of the font in the reply edit window.


                                                                1 Reply
                                                                1. re: JuniorBalloon

                                                                  Hi JuniorBalloon,

                                                                  I think you'll be pleased by a change you will see in the near future...

                                                                  Thanks, Meredith

                                                                2. I hate to write anything here, as I know I'll be notified of replies in perpetuity but...

                                                                  The thing I miss the most is the presence of everyone's avatar in the replies. Only the first people replying to the OP have their avatars visible. In threads like the COTM, where we ask people to reply to the first poster who made the dish, the consequent replies are just as important as the first replies. They seem somehow diminished by the absence of the avatar. I think the avatars also make it easier to follow the discussion, and keep track of who is saying what.

                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                  1. re: L.Nightshade

                                                                    I miss the avatars too! It was the first thing I noticed. Even though they are teeny tiny - they personalize and give a nice visual clue.

                                                                  2. ((((((((((((((Meredith)))))))))))))

                                                                    1. I can't help but love the irony here. When the avatars were first introduced on CH the noise they created went on for days.

                                                                      CH's refused in protest to use them, voiced they would never pick a cute photo or jpg; even turned the basic provided avatar upside down to make their point. How that silly little picture that no one wanted was going to change the face of true CH's forever...now we have threads about how wonderful they are...and, now we miss them under the most recent set of redesigns.

                                                                      I've been reading all day about how the CH Team has let "us" down, didn't consult with us about changes, how dare they....yet, how we tend to forget what we put them through. It's hard to ignore the rage on Site Talk in only a few days.

                                                                      Changes to Design Tues, Wed. Thurs...yeah it's a thankless job being on the other side of the CH curtain. For those of us not buying into the rage, we're suppose to keep our opinions to ourselves while the screaming few can't tear themselves away from the screen. Rage wins. Wow such a victory.

                                                                      If the on screen eye strain is so horrible, how do the same people keep finding a way to write their point of view over and over (and over and over) without a trip to the hospital is just a miracle.

                                                                      Thank you, who ever you are, for standing by your design choices while finding a way to work through the member feedback. You asked for feedback and boy did you get it!

                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                      1. re: HillJ

                                                                        I fail to see the irony, as I wasn't around when the avatars came into play. But I miss them in the response posts. I think they're fun and very useful in following conversations.
                                                                        I'm finding the new design readable, now that there is good contrast, and I haven't had any trouble with the font sizes.

                                                                      2. there is a mobile app for chow? where can i get it? i cannot find it in the playstore for android.
                                                                        thank you

                                                                        4 Replies
                                                                          1. re: carolinadawg

                                                                            please see #2 and #6 in the original post by meredith. that is why i asked.

                                                                            1. re: ritabwh

                                                                              There is a mobile view, but it isn't an app.

                                                                        1. Seems like a lot of work to fix what wasn't really broken to begin with.

                                                                          1 Reply
                                                                          1. re: Withnail42

                                                                            I would tend to agree with you. It is looking good though.

                                                                          2. There are several bugs associated with the Contrib option. Please run a test.

                                                                            1. Everything looks great, getting better and better. Thanks again.