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PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2016 3:21 pm 
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Another orange icon scanner chiming in. As pointed out, this change has a disadvantage for those of us who do. Can somebody point out an actual advantage of this change? Slightly lower height of the front page is the only thing I can think of, but is scrolling so expensive? View unread posts has its uses, but doesn't really work for the same use case as icon scanning, if you're only interested in a few subsections. When looking for unread posts on the previous front page, the first sort (which sections have unread posts) is a low cognitive load operation. Scanning the unread posts list is a high cognitive load operation since it requires you to scan each item to figure out where it was posted.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2016 4:47 pm 
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nitro2k01 wrote:
Can somebody point out an actual advantage of this change? Slightly lower height of the front page is the only thing I can think of, but is scrolling so expensive?

If we end up having six different compos in none of which you are interested, scrolling past all of them could get tiring.

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2016 5:25 pm 
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Compos? Competitions? Does each competition typically get its own subforum? And anyway, how many people actually thought the scrolling was a problem?


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2016 6:32 pm 
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tepples wrote:
If we end up having six different compos in none of which you are interested, scrolling past all of them could get tiring.

There was a forum I used to go to where you could collapse entire groups of subforums (and this setting would be saved). Did this with the competitions group of that forum, incidentally (it had stopped seeing any updates for a long while and it was getting annoying). Of course doing this here would probably require messing with the forum's software...

This doesn't even sound like the best optimization though, given the bulk of the subforums are in the NES group anyway (and the "sites issues" group hasn't even been touched). If we're going to optimize out one of the most active subforums (for a rather minimal gain), then I propose that we start considering doing it on all the groups so at least the total reduction in space becomes worth it.

EDIT: or again of course the real problem is maybe that there isn't a SNESDev forum in its own site in the first place, that'd probably make the SNES subforum here quite redundant and more worthy of "other dev" =P


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2016 6:47 pm 
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tepples wrote:
nitro2k01 wrote:
Can somebody point out an actual advantage of this change? Slightly lower height of the front page is the only thing I can think of, but is scrolling so expensive?

If we end up having six different compos in none of which you are interested, scrolling past all of them could get tiring.

If we end up having six different compos in all of which you are interested, loading each of them would be tiring, increasing both the bandwidth used and time to read significantly.

Though we should not conflate 2 different issues. Hierarchical layout of categories on the main forum page is its own (very minor IMO) issue. Creating new or "too many" categories is a different problem entirely; no amount of reorganizing the main page layout can make having to load each subforum separately go away, that's just inherent in the use of new subforums. (The topic of that other thread.)


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2016 7:02 pm 
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What was the issue trying to be solved by moving SNES into a subfolder of Other Retro Dev?
Christ it feels like coming home with all my stuff having been removed from the house and put into the garage.

I guess change for the sake of change, but then why can't SNESdev and GBDev it just reside in "other" and not other/other/. Jeez something obsure like the Philips CDI deserves to be in /other/other/, not the NES's younger but bigger brother!


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2016 7:30 pm 
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From the main page, there's clearly a link to SNES subforum. I don't see the problem.

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2016 7:38 pm 
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True, you can still access it with 1 click from the main page, you just can't tell whether there are new posts.

I don't mean to be a dick to our fellow SNESdev'ers, but this is NESdev after all. The number of forums has grown quite a bit over the years, and is likely to grow even more with the dedicated competition forums. Grouping the things that are not directly related to the NES makes a lot of sense in an NES forum, and helps keep the main page clean.

If people are so upset about SNESdev's demotion, one way to bring it back up and not break the forum's organization is to make "Other Retro Dev" is own category, with forums for SNES, GB and Other.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2016 9:58 pm 
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If the subforum link can include some "data-" attributes then it won't change the default appearance, but it mean you can implement user scripts (with GreaseMonkey) to expand the ones you are interested in. Another alternative would be to have a setting in the user control panel to expand subforums or not. The third possibility is to to both, or to make the forum available by RDF and then you can use a local RDF parser (I wrote one in JavaScript and one in C) to display.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 29, 2016 12:09 am 
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I don't like the subforums at all, as they aren't pre-expanded on the front forum page.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 29, 2016 6:11 am 
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Did I handle this poorly by reacting too quickly to seconds and not leaving the topic open to objections long enough?

My guess is that it's a theme issue. Using a desktop or laptop computer, you can hover over each subforum link and read its title to see whether each subforum has unread posts. Or you can use the information in title in a Greasemonkey or Tampermonkey script that adds an icon. So it's clearly checking whether each forum has unread posts, just not using that information to display an icon.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 29, 2016 10:56 am 
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tepples wrote:
My guess is that it's a theme issue. Using a desktop or laptop computer, you can hover over each subforum link and read its title to see whether each subforum has unread posts. Or you can use the information in title in a Greasemonkey or Tampermonkey script that adds an icon. So it's clearly checking whether each forum has unread posts, just not using that information to display an icon.
It just says if it is unread or not, but doesn't tell you when or by whom.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 29, 2016 11:00 am 
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tepples wrote:
My guess is that it's a theme issue. Using a desktop or laptop computer, you can hover over each subforum link and read its title to see whether each subforum has unread posts. Or you can use the information in title in a Greasemonkey or Tampermonkey script that adds an icon. So it's clearly checking whether each forum has unread posts, just not using that information to display an icon.

This sounds very much like the old saying about government, how it creates a problem and then offers a solution for it.


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 29, 2016 11:52 am 
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As part of this site's government, I can extend the analogy:
  1. Government notices a problem that only it can solve, often a market failure.
  2. Government intervenes to solve this problem at the cost of a creating a second problem.
  3. Government describes how citizens can solve the second problem.

U.S. Affordable Care Act:
  1. Growth of uncompensated emergency room care by who cannot afford private insurance or who have been turned down by private insurers for preexisting conditions.
  2. Obamacare, which combines a ban on preexisting condition discrimination and subsidy for low-income private insurance with a "shared responsibility" tax on not being insured. It ends up creating a problem when state legislatures and governors controlled by the opposition party opt out of subsidizing insurance for many households below the poverty line, for fear that hard-line minarchists in the "Tea Party" will challenge the incumbent in the next primary election.
  3. The tax code is interpreted to grant an exemption such that affected individuals need not pay "shared responsibility" tax.

On NESdev BBS:
  1. Coming growth of Homebrew Projects causes users to have to waste time scrolling past forums in which they are not interested.
  2. Third-level forums, which end up hiding unread status.
  3. "View unread posts" and suggestion of using Greasemonkey to add icons for unread subforums.

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Last edited by tepples on Sat Apr 30, 2016 5:03 am, edited 1 time in total.
Clarified market failure on NESdev BBS per nitro2k01


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 29, 2016 12:26 pm 
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tepples wrote:
... "View unread posts" and suggestion of using Greasemonkey to add icons for unread subforums.
As I have described, that is only a partial solution; it adds an icon for read/unread but not when or by whom. (Adding that information to the title attribute would fix this of course)

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