BBS Review: One year on?

Yes I noticed this too, @eviltrout is aware of this issue, we want to fix it but apparently its super complicated.

That’s what comes back from the Readability code for that particular post.

Try a different one.

Sweet lawd, what was the odds of that? Picking the wrong, random one and then again earlier. :open_mouth: Yep, this one works perfect.

Sweet! :slight_smile:

EDIT: I do find that it disappears the instant I click the “like” button on the post with no option to bring it back unless I reload the page…


Just noticed that the post picture is missing. Is there an option to load up the entire post with picture? Maybe the pictures could be thumbnails that you can click on and the expand inline or something?

Or just make the pictures a little smaller and still have them load up top but they only expand with an “Load Pictures” button?

This is subject to whatever the Readability code decides is part of the post. Try a different one.

Ah, I see… this one loads up a small thumbnail. Do wish it was more consistent and always has the option at least to show photos so the posts are more complete.

Maybe the Readability code could be tweaked to always show thumbs or expand pictures like I showed above?

Anyway, thanks for the response.

I just fixed this one, overall expansions should be a bit more reliable here.



The only thing I find annoying is not being allowed to close your posts by signing your name. I understand that one of the “rules” of the BBS is that since everyone has a profile which can be viewed by clicking on their name that this means there is no “technical” reason to sign posts. However, putting a signature to what one has written online has never been a technical issue to me, but a social one; e.g., when engaging in polite written conversation, one begins with a salutation, and ends with a closing signature.

It seems to be that making a rule such as this in a modern day forum seems rather arbitrary (not capricious, but just arbitrary) to me. It’s not an issue of storage, since I doubt this forum is running off of floppy diskettes like the BBSes of yore, nor are we talking about the signature blocks that made fun to dip into on occasion in the pre-web Internet. Rather, simply about signing one’s posts, which I felt have added a bit of civility and of decorum in an age where digital communications seem to be ever more impersonal and ephemeral.

Regarding signatures, see:



Oh, I’m familiar with signatures on forums. And while those are great for telling people your system specs, what guild you’re in, or how many of your moggies are of the Persian, Siamese or ICanHasCheezburger variety, I think that putting one’s closing salutation there, well, takes it away from the message one is trying to convey.

Signature blocks on forums serve a similar function to having your company’s logo and contact information printed on stationery, in a sense. Despite having the same name, It’s not the same thing, or at least, it isn’t to me. I do know that if someone sent me written correspondence and the closing and signature was printed onto the stationery, I’d be livid. That’s the kind of behavior I expect from politicians and marketeers (not that there’s too much difference between them these days, anyway) and other people who are insincere for a living.

OK it’s maybe a little more than a year now, but we just officially released Discourse V1:

So perhaps an appropriate time to introspect on the use of Discourse here at Boing Boing?

  • What could we do better?
  • What has improved?
  • What has continued to grate?
  • Why is Discourse so ^$&@*# awesome?

Or, you know, add your own bullets, like I did!

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Also, the suggested topic suggestions are just plain bad. Not yet had a useful one.

Pls get the images to display when embedding tweets

Decreased friction.

search interface for topics, persons, and posts. A proper advanced search page, please.

The team’s approach to iterating off of community feedback.

I’d read bb for more than a handful of years, but not commented prior to bbs. I quite like most of discourse, and am sowing the seeds for a application of the platform in my day job.


Honestly I am just surprised at how stable and quick (performance-wise) things are. I personally am doing a bad job at documenting and reporting some very, very minor quibbles (mostly a few things in the mobile version), so I will work on doing a better job at that.

All in all, without more thought, I have very little in the way of “boulder” features or even “rock” features, just a little bit of “sand”.


okay, this is purely a style issue, and i suspect what i am going to bring up has been discussed.

when i am at, i feel like i should still be at ^$, and the upper left at all time should take me back to the main site and not the bbs. my personal workflow is, “read article, peruse comments. read another article, peruse comments”. and the way I have been trained to do that, if i am ‘mentally lost’ is to hit the ‘home button’ in the top left.

but that is only opinion, and really has nothing to do with the awesome job Discourse has done.


Going to echo the calls for improved search and a “load all comments” option.

What has improved?

Lots of things, but the progression has been so smooth, it’s difficult to pick just one. Overall stability, probably.

What has continued to grate?

More to do with the way it’s implemented here than the actual platform itself. Needs a better user guide for newbies, perhaps. Not that people would read it, but still…

Oh, and my Microplane. That’s continued to grate brilliantly.

Because it’s powered entirely from upcycled unicorn farts. (Is that the right answer? Did I win?)


What’s up with all this positive feedback? Where’s the angst? Where’s the RAAAAAGE?


Well, Suggested Topics is not very sophisticated… it basically works this way:

  1. Show any unread topics you are tracking
  2. Show any new topics in the same category (newest first)
  3. Pick any non-closed topics from the same category at random

It relies pretty heavily on random selection after going through the new stuff in the same category. It’s not actually trying to select similar topics or anything like that, just prioritizing “your” topics.

Where are you specifically seeing newbies have problems? What are you observing?

We hear the requests for an advanced full page search loud and clear. Will probably get to that this year. Note that we fixed a particularly heinous long standing bug with search recently so you might have gotten significantly poorer results in the past. Long story…


We’re only being nice to troll you. :wink:

In the drill-bit thread, a new sign-up wanted to post a snap of a drill-bit, but uploading images is (IMO quite rightly) restricted for TL0 users, causing them some confusion. This isn’t exactly common, but it’s not the first time I’ve seen that complaint.

I’m not familiar enough with the new-user experience to fully understand what can and can’t be done by them along with what’s needed to go from TL0 to TL1 so I went looking for the info. Now got a relevant thread bookmarked, but perhaps a link or an explanation in the “Welcome to BB” sign-up message would be handy? Unless that’s been updated since I got one. :slight_smile:

Edit: And it has been updated, having just tested it, which makes my suggestion moot. So it’s down to a new user not reading the info. Not sure what can be done about that. :frowning:


Sorry, I meant the widget that suggests topics for new posts. The ones I’ve been presented with have been far afield. Prolly related to search.

Rage is so 2013.

I also may need to implement a community discussion platform in the near future, and I find crow to be quite delicious.

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Bad sample. If you truly want negative feedback and rage, ask the people who haven’t logged on for months because they couldn’t stand features x or y.

I’ll have to see how it’s changed, but last time I looked I was still unimpressed with the system of reply as new, moderators moving and splitting topics, and how those interacted with the people who were trying to follow a conversation.

And I still think it’s backwards to show not-logged-in users the top stories from this year, guaranteeing that new users are mostly going to see locked threads that they can’t participate in. This month or this week would allow for a nice mix of popular threads of the past and conversations currently ongoing.

Oh, and I just noticed this now when double-checking the Top feature. When you go to the /top page, it is unsortable by topic, category, posts, views, activity, etc… However, if you change the time frame being displayed the topics become sortable, and sorting them seems to select from the entire BBS during that time frame instead of just those top 50 posts.

@sam is working up some interim improvements to search. We think you will like it.

@funruly point taken about new topic suggestions, but how many new topics are created here?

@fiddlingfrog yes, topic splits could use some improvement. As for /top , there is a bug there @eviltrout is working on where an unwanted duplicate layout is shown. But the range shown to new and long absent returning users is based on either the last time we saw the user (for long absent returning users) or overall activity level of the forum (for new users we have never seen before).