opusculus: Black hole (Default)
opusculus ([personal profile] opusculus) wrote in [site community profile] dw_suggestions2011-12-31 05:22 pm

Visually mark new comments since last reload

Title:
Visually mark new comments since last reload

Area:
Comments

Summary:
When you reload the page, any comments that have been posted since you last loaded the page would be marked as visually distinct and new.

Description:
This is about the only thing I really like about LJ's redesign, personally, so I thought I'd suggest it over here. It could be done with either a hardcoded visual thing like LJ's, where a little yellow new comment button shows up next to new comments, or something that can be styled with CSS to be a dot or a different header color or whatever, that would just become part of the layout and people can choose to maximize or minimize how much it stands out.

It's especially helpful in very fast-moving posts where you want/need to track what everyone is saying, but need more context for each thread than tracking and only seeing what the immediately previous comment said with the newest comment, rather than seeing the last 10 comments in a straight row. I play a game on occasion where 5-10 people can make a hundred comments in an hour all on pretty much the same topic and you have to try to be following them all, and the last time I played it was oh my god so much easier with that feature. But it's the kind of thing that seems like it would be useful in almost any discussion you want to follow, but don't quite want to track the post for whatever reason.

Poll #9007 Visually mark new comments since last reload
Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 91


This suggestion:

View Answers

Should be implemented as-is.
54 (59.3%)

Should be implemented with changes. (please comment)
6 (6.6%)

Shouldn't be implemented.
5 (5.5%)

(I have no opinion)
26 (28.6%)

(Other: please comment)
0 (0.0%)

melannen: Commander Valentine of Alpha Squad Seven, a red-haired female Nick Fury in space, smoking contemplatively (Default)

[personal profile] melannen 2012-01-06 03:13 pm (UTC)(link)
>>but need more context for each thread than tracking and only seeing what the immediately previous comment said with the newest comment, rather than seeing the last 10 comments in a straight row.

You can do this now by using the "flat" link on the comment page - it de-threads all comments and lists them in strict order of posting, so you can read, oh, the last 10 comments in a straight row. It's not perfect (it hides any structure with the threading, except what's revealed by subject lines) but I thought I'd mention it in case you didn't know - it's completely changed the way I follow large discussions.
azurelunatic: A glittery black pin badge with a blue holographic star in the middle. (Default)

[personal profile] azurelunatic 2012-01-06 03:20 pm (UTC)(link)
(This is all dev speculation based on my limited-but-improving knowledge of How Shit Works.)

As far as back-end goes, there would probably need to be some sort of "new-since-last-visit-from-this-user" flag property attached to the comment, which the stylesheet would then check for. Thus the "display this labeled as unread" behavior would be easy to change in one place if studying determined that the display wasn't working for some reason (without having to rebuild the whole back end) and it would be also available for S2-styled comment views in every style without having to do a lot of shenanigans.
musyc: Castiel from Supernatural, on cell phone, captioned "this isn't funny, Dean, the voice says I'm almost out of minutes" (Supernatural: Out of minutes)

[personal profile] musyc 2012-01-06 03:37 pm (UTC)(link)
Backend and coding is all magic tricks to me, but could this possibly be connected to the coding that works on reading pages to change the color of links? Posts with new comments since the last time I loaded my droll have the "unclicked link" color, and I had no idea how useful that ability was until I tickied it in the options. (And now I want to sulk when it's not on every webpage I visit.) If this suggestion could somehow be tied into that, it would be faboo.
azurelunatic: A glittery black pin badge with a blue holographic star in the middle. (Default)

[personal profile] azurelunatic 2012-01-06 04:33 pm (UTC)(link)
The comment count link one is actually really technically simple and relies on information stored in your browser, but I don't think it would be quite that easy to do for this.

How it works is, when the reading page is first loaded, the back-end counts the current comments and puts a ?nc=17 on the end of the comments link for an entry that has 17 comments. Meanwhile, your browser knows that you've visited the link. When you reload your reading page again, it's gone up to 18 comments, and Dreamwidth serves a ?nc=18 link, and your browser doesn't recognize that link, so it uses the "hey! new link!" color. Since all Dreamwidth is doing is giving a link that says how many comments are in it, it doesn't actually keep track of whether you've visited or not already.

This falls down when say you're on the page and it's now got 18 comments, and you go ahead and leave 4 more replies, so now it's up to 22 comments. Meanwhile, you haven't actually loaded the ?nc=22 link, you've just been on the entry page. So when you come to the ?nc=22 link on your reading page again, the link's showing unread, but you've already seen the other 4 comments.

I don't think there's a way to make your browser track what separate on-page objects you've seen outside of loading single-comment links for them all.
fyreharper: (Default)

[personal profile] fyreharper 2012-01-06 05:11 pm (UTC)(link)
In any case, it would be cool if it were logged-in-user based instead of browser based - while I looove the comment count link, it's always annoying when I catch up on my reading page at home, and then the links are still haven't-read-this colored at work ;p
stormy: βͺ ππŽπ“πˆπ‚π„ ❫ 𝑫𝑢 𝑡𝑢𝑻 𝑻𝑨𝑲𝑬 𝑴𝒀 𝑰π‘ͺ𝑢𝑡𝑺 ⊘ (Default)

[personal profile] stormy 2012-01-06 03:34 pm (UTC)(link)
I think we have this. Located in http://www.dreamwidth.org/manage/settings/?cat=display under New Comment Link Indicator. I haven't used it.
majorshipper: (Default)

[personal profile] majorshipper 2012-01-06 03:40 pm (UTC)(link)
It's described as "Adds the comment count to entry links. Your browser should display links in a different color if there are new comments since your last visit."
So not exactly what some are looking for.
denise: Image: Me, facing away from camera, on top of the Castel Sant'Angelo in Rome (Default)

[staff profile] denise 2012-01-06 03:40 pm (UTC)(link)
That's for knowing whether there are new comments at all from your reading page (it adds ?nc=XX to the end of the URL, where XX is the number of comments, so if someone else comments, the link changes and is shown in your unread-link color); this suggestion is for when you're viewing the entry page, having individual new comments indicated somehow, like how LJ did with release 88.
stormy: βͺ ππŽπ“πˆπ‚π„ ❫ 𝑫𝑢 𝑡𝑢𝑻 𝑻𝑨𝑲𝑬 𝑴𝒀 𝑰π‘ͺ𝑢𝑡𝑺 ⊘ (Default)

[personal profile] stormy 2012-01-06 04:34 pm (UTC)(link)
I see. I'm not on Livejournal, so the reference is lost on me. Could another class be added to the CSS for this and then added into the style wizard?
marahmarie: Sheep go to heaven, goats go to hell (Default)

[personal profile] marahmarie 2012-01-13 04:37 am (UTC)(link)
I'm thinking it might require Javascript (to compare the state of the page you've loaded with its state at last touch), related HTML classes, and new CSS to style the HTML (but I could be wrong - it could be simpler or harder than that to implement). I've seen on some big websites call-outs like, "One new comment - click to show" as a highlighted sentence that shows up above or below comment sections as you're reading, writing a comment, reloading the page, etc., but that's a Wordpress implementation and I have no idea how it might work here.
Edited 2012-01-13 04:39 (UTC)
aibro: (Default)

[personal profile] aibro 2012-01-06 07:13 pm (UTC)(link)
I think it'd be cool for other users, but I'd want an option to disable it since I prefer using the flat link.
zeborah: Map of New Zealand with a zebra salient (Default)

[personal profile] zeborah 2012-01-06 07:26 pm (UTC)(link)
This would be handy.

Using CSS would be ideal - then people could choose to have it do nothing, or mark new comments, or even entirely hide the old comments.

(I was once working on an implementation that allowed for manual mark-as-read, mark-as-unread, mark-all-as-read, etc; and was working up to add functionality so that scrolling past an item would automagically count as marking-as-read. I can't remember how I planned to do that, alas. Probably with much trial-and-error and swearing.)
snakeling: Statue of the Minoan Snake Goddess (Default)

[personal profile] snakeling 2012-01-06 07:43 pm (UTC)(link)
I personally use this Greasemonkey userscript. But a native solution would be lovely, especially if it could be tied with the account rather than the browser :)
existence: from mspaintadventures.com (*DEATH takes out his BALL-POINT SCYTHE)

[personal profile] existence 2012-01-06 08:29 pm (UTC)(link)
I use that too, but I haven't had much luck with it always remembering pages properly, alas. I would love a native solution.
sally_maria: (Nero)

[personal profile] sally_maria 2012-01-06 09:54 pm (UTC)(link)
I use the userscript as well, I can't imagine navigating busy entries without it these days, but if it was possible to tie it to the account then that would be wonderful.
eruthros: Delenn from Babylon 5 with a startled expression and the text "omg!" (Default)

[personal profile] eruthros 2012-01-07 02:34 am (UTC)(link)
Totally agree!
rainfall: A girl stands in the midst of fallen leaves. You can't see her face. (Default)

[personal profile] rainfall 2012-01-06 09:52 pm (UTC)(link)
Okay, not that this really needs saying, but:

1.) I want an opt-in; I feel like this would be distracting in RP, and if it adds to page load time at all I wouldn't be interested.

2.) "Visual" distinction is the wrong way to look at it. This would, if anything, be even more useful for users who can't scan an entry visually. :|a I don't know a lot about screen readers, but if we add something to indicate new comments, I think it should be something that screen readers could identify and tab between. "New comments!" would be announced via the screen reader, and then the screen reader would go straight from one to the next, skipping all the old comments unless the user would rather read the entire post.

Just food for thought.
eruthros: Delenn from Babylon 5 with a startled expression and the text "omg!" (Default)

[personal profile] eruthros 2012-01-07 02:41 am (UTC)(link)
I use a greasemonkey script to do this, and I really like it. (It just says "NEW" next to a comment, but it doesn't always work perfectly.)

But I wouldn't turn a similar thing on in dw if it was only visually-indicated by color or with a dot or whatever - I use subdued colors for a reason! Plus I'd like it to be something I could search for to quickly run through all the new comments in situ in their threads; using the mark-new-comments script, I can just crtl-f the all-caps "NEW" and quickly shuffle through all the new comments, and I couldn't do that with a visual indication. I can definitely see the uses of the visual-only notification, though, for other people, so maybe it would work better if it could be coded with the journal layout to be either text or icons/images, the way some other journal features already are?
imriel: (misc: qt blonde girl)

[personal profile] imriel 2012-01-07 07:32 am (UTC)(link)
I wouldn't mind this as long as there was an opt-out. I see how it could be useful, but personally I just find the 'new comment' flags on Livejournal really, really annoying.
green_knight: (Bog)

[personal profile] green_knight 2012-01-07 12:56 pm (UTC)(link)
I would love to have a 'new comment' class created by DW, and I think that is the behaviour that we should be looking to implement. Once you have class="new_comment" you have endless - and reader-definable - opportunities:
- collapse old and expand new comments
- show only new comments
- add a visual identifier: mark the text in a different colour, on a different background, display an icon next to it - all the CSS fun
- you could even add 'NEW: in front of the subject line. (Would that work for screen reader users?)
-... pprobaby more things I can't think of right now.

I dislike the LJ implementation - I'm lost in the white space and my brain isn't parsing the yellow blocks as meaningful information, particularly as they're too far down - it's information I'd expect in the header of a comment, not what appears to be its body.
azurelunatic: A glittery black pin badge with a blue holographic star in the middle. (Default)

[personal profile] azurelunatic 2012-01-07 07:08 pm (UTC)(link)
Whatever the text-only display would be, it should not be either able to be confused with the actual subject, or be something that someone could (accidentally or intentionally) duplicate the look of in ordinary business with their comment.

I might think with or near the timestamp?
susanreads: my avatar, a white woman with brown hair and glasses (Default)

[personal profile] susanreads 2012-01-07 10:02 pm (UTC)(link)
Next to the timestamp yes! When I'm scanning for new comments I look at the timestamp, but that'll only tell me what's new since time X, not what's been unscreened in that time. I wonder whether it's feasible to include newly-visible comments? Obviously not a flag per comment per viewer, but a hidden timestamp for when something became public?
azurelunatic: A glittery black pin badge with a blue holographic star in the middle. (Default)

[personal profile] azurelunatic 2012-01-22 08:06 am (UTC)(link)
Ooo. Yes. This should definitely include newly-visible-comments if it's being Done Right. Which ... may require a back-end field just for "visible to non-owner since:", to compare against time-of-last-visit.
azurelunatic: A glittery black pin badge with a blue holographic star in the middle. (Default)

[personal profile] azurelunatic 2012-01-22 08:08 am (UTC)(link)
Oh, but time-of-last-load wouldn't catch the things in threads that the user had not expanded, especially if they were reading down the page, had commented, page had reloaded, and something had happened in a thread up above.

[personal profile] jem0000000 2012-01-22 04:03 am (UTC)(link)
I like the general idea, but I would also like both an opt-out and an accessibility/screen reader -friendly indicator. :)