Discourse vs. Community Server



  • I think someone made the classic mistake of assuming that because a piece of software was old, decrepit, and buggy, it didn't have a lot of features. Well, guess what? Community Server did have a lot of features. It had RSS support, pretty much everywhere, to give just one example. Or a WYSIWYG editor with more than 10 formatting options. Or separating people's posts with some kind of visual indication, so the entire page isn't just a single column of undifferentiated text blobbed-in with the header and footer. A column that doesn't even fill the whole width of the window.

    WHY IS THIS POPPING UP LIKE 47 TOASTERS EVERY TIME I TYPE A POST HOLY FUCK GO AWAY!!!

    The problem with Discourse is not only does instead of implementing the basic but boring features every other forum software has had for ages, they spent their time implementing "fun" and "exciting" features like endless scrolling, or strangely-colored toaster windows that pop up while you're typing a post for literally no reason except to distract you.

    Back when I played with the playground, I thought to myself: meh, I'm usually pretty good at adapting to change. But man I am hating this so far. Oh hey, look, the preview window doesn't scroll with the typing window, so I can't preview what I'm typing right now unless I take my hand OFF the mouse, move it to the other side of the window, and manually scroll down*. At least until I type enough to get a new line, then I have to do it again. And again. And again. I LOVE THIS SO MUCH.

    *) And don't think of using the scrollwheel, that would be way to quick and easy so we wired the scrollwheel up to the main page content and not the preview pane thing.

    So you're basically taking a, say, a 1992 Caddy, with all the trimmings, all the features, and giving to us a 2014 bottom-of-the-line Kia Rio. Sure the Kia has better fuel economy, sure it has nicer brakes, steering, etc. But where are all the fucking FEATURES?!?!



  • Quit whining. It's open source so you can just fork it or patch it in. Everyone knows that because of that all reasons to complain are void.

    I'm on the fence. I do like the more modern layout, browser support etc. I like markdown, but mainly because it's being used everywhere now. The WYSIWHG argument isn't really valid, as it was broken beyond repair in everything newer than Firefox 0.9 or something.

    I despise the "no-pagination"/endless scrolling fad for anything else than what it was invented for (continuous streams of content like twitter). Also because of the endless scrolling you can't search a topic (at least through Ctrl+F), which is just ridiculous.



  • @blakeyrat said:

    Or a WYSIWYG editor with more than 10 formatting options.

    To be fair, i didn't have the wise wig since i moved to chrome. so this is a big improvement



  • @dtech said:

    I do like the more modern layout

    Needs to be muuuch less of a white text column, I think.



  • Much as it grates to agree with blakey, fuck endless scrolling.

    Either put the entire thread on one page and just let the pages be huge, or paginate decently. The endless scrolling fad is total bullshit.

    Markdown I could maybe learn to live with, and maybe this thing's email notification features are decent enough that I won't miss rss. Time will tell. But endless scrolling has to go.

    If it's a choice between this thing with endless scrolling, or CS with a raft of amusing bugs, my vote's for CS.



  • "But endless scrolling has to go"
    Good luck with that, given that it is Discourse's main claim-to-greatness.

    I'm just bemused as to why Alex et al had to go with this zany, wacky, try-too-hard pile of crap rather than one of the many, many mature (and maintained!) forum products out there.


  • :belt_onion:

    @flabdablet said:

    fuck endless scrolling.

    THIS x 10000000

    Go to the 'Frist and Welcome' thread, I'm at the end of the thread, I grab the scrollbar handle and drag it to the top of the page. I release the mouse button and . . . . WHAT THE FUCKING FUCK!! I'm not at the top of the page. The scrollbar handle bounces down to about halfway. So I grab it again and drag it up to the top, release the mouse button, and it bounces down to about a third of the way down the page.

    FUCK YOU. Seriously. FUCK YOU.

    This isn't about not liking something simply because it's different. If that was true I'd still be using Windows 3.0. This is about SHIT THAT DOESN"T EVEN WORK PROPERLY.


  • :belt_onion:

    @dtech said:

    I do like the more modern layout
    Why is it that "modern" has now become the new word for LOOKS LIKE SHIT?



  • I'm trying the mobile version right now. It's mind-blowingly terrible. I can't see the text I type in the textbox. I have to rely on the preview pane. Granted, this is the stock Android beowser, which is lousy, but it handled CS without any major issues.
    Oh, now I can see my text. Apparently it was buried behind the toolbar. What the fuck mobile device was this designed for? Why are the links to hide preview and upload on top of one another? This is a 10" tablet; screen real estate is not exactly in short supply.



  • @El_Heffe said:

    I grab the scrollbar handle and drag it to the top of the page. I release the mouse button and . . . . WHAT THE FUCKING FUCK!! I'm not at the top of the page. The scrollbar handle bounces down to about halfway. So I grab it again and drag it up to the top, release the mouse button, and it bounces down to about a third of the way down the page.

    I haven't even noticed the scrollbar because I always use the wheel or page-up/page-down to scroll. That seems to work at least (which is more than with some implementations)

    ...

    @El_Heffe said:

    dtech said:
    I do like the more modern layout

    Why is it that "modern" has now become the new word for LOOKS LIKE SHIT?

    Yeah that, or maybe that some people like different things. I'm not sure what the more likely one is.


  • :belt_onion:

    @dtech said:

    I haven't even noticed the scrollbar because I always use the wheel or page-up/page-down to scroll. That seems to work at least (which is more than with some implementations)

    And that's perfectly fine. Maybe a lot of people don't even use the scroll bars, ever. No problem.

    But that's not the point. Things like pressing the Home key to go to the top of the page, End to go to the bottom of the page . . and scrollbars -- these are basic things that don't need to be fucked with.

    One of Alex's justifications for switching to this pile of fail is "actively maintained". What the fuck good is "actively maintained" if the people who are doing the maintaining have DELIBERATELY broken basic features that have existed in every GUI forever?



  • It's waay too white and boring, but I like the *layout* too.



  • Also, I should point out that I will change my username frequently just because they allow it, and it will break links.

    By the way, the mobile view is terrible on my phone, too.



  • I'd have much rather gone with XenForo over this. Even the modern broken versions of vBulletin or phpBB are easier to use and nicer-looking than this.


  • :belt_onion:

    Time to create a javascript code bookmark that will auto-scroll the entire page to force-load the full thread, and fix the stylesheet so there is actually a discernable separator between posts.

    Some of the "features" are interesting. Some of them just look like a guy threw a bunch of random fancy shit at the wall and now we have this huge smattering of completely unrelated crap all wrapped together.



  • I feel like enough arguments were already made in Lorne Kates's post on the old forums from only a few months back

    Discourse:
    Why break conversations into awkward and arbitrary pages, where you have to constantly find the Next Page button?

    To break information up in to small, digestible chunks. To prevent overloading a browser's rendering engine or memory handling when viewing large conversations. To allow for easy direct access to specific parts of the conversation. To allow users to customize the pagesize to their own reading/bandwidth/device size preference.

    And once you've found the "Next Page" button once, you never have to find it again. It's in your muscle memory. FFS, if I'm reading a long thread, I click the Next button once, and part the cursor. Scroll with the mousewheel or keyboard, and BAM cursor is where the Next button will be.

    Use all the scare words you want, this was not a broken system.

    Discourse:
    We've replaced all that with the power of just-in-time loading. Want to read more? Just keep scrolling down.

    Fuck you, Discourse. So now I have no idea how long the conversation actually is. I have no way of directly jumping to an arbitrary point in the conversation. If it's a 1000 reply thread, I can't read page 1, page 2-- hop to page 50 to get an idea of the conversation flow, then jump straight to page 100 to see the latest posts. If I refresh the browser or navigate away accidentally, I lose my spot and have to start infinite-scrolling again. I can never use the scroll bar as a gague as to how far into a conversation I am. This is assuming you don't fuck up scrolling like nearly ever infinite-scroll application I've ever used.

    I also can't just hit CTRL-END to jump to the end of a page.

    You know what else provided "just in time" access to more posts? A FUCKING NEXT BUTTON!

    Discourse:
    Discourse is a simple, flat forum, where replies flow down the page in a line.

    Replies are attached to the bottom and top of each post, so you can optionally expand the context of the conversation – without breaking your flow.

    They can't even figure out if it's a flat list or a tree.

    Just paste it in on a single line and we'll do all the hard work to automatically make it awesome.
    Links to Wikipedia, YouTube, Amazon, GitHub, Twitter, Flickr and dozens of other popular web sites will automatically expand to provide additional context and information.

    1. Never ever use the word "awesome". You sound like a sweater-wearing 50 year old bingo mom trying to be hip and kewl with her nieces.
    1. If I post a link, it's so there's a small and simple piece of text people can click on if they desire. What I don't want is for it to become a 200px high image laden monstrosity that problem instantly fires off at least 2-3 more AJAX calls. Populating a page with untrusted 3rd party content. What could possibly go wrong with that? I mean, I certainly wouldn't do something like post a link to wikipedia/InnocuousPage-- wait for the post to be approved/vetted by mods-- and then go and change the Wikipedia page to be an ad-- which now pollutes your forum with spam. Sorry, not forum "simple flat tree-branching conversation delivery system".

    Discourse:
    Want to share an image? Just copy and paste it in. Or drag and drop it in!
    Search that actually works
    We have built in robust import and export tools, both for the site owner and for individual users.

    Fine, those are good points. Not enough to balance out infinite scrolling bullshit. If it means never having to deal with infinite scrolling, I'll live with having to use Imgur to post unfunny screenshots of Gmail and Firefox's latest UI failures.

    I've yet to find this magical well-working search, at least within a thread


  • Winner of the 2016 Presidential Election

    If you want a vision of the future, imagine a thread scrolling across a human face forever.


  • Winner of the 2016 Presidential Election

    @Zecc said:

    It's waay too white and boring, but I like the layout too.

    They said the same about me.



  • Because Jeff Atwood is king of all programmers! Bow before him!



  • I hate to be that guy, but I tried commenting on Windows Phone 8 and it worked... quite well honestly. So I guess the mobile device it was designed to run on was Windows Phone 8.



  • Seconded. This makes me really appreciate phpBB.

    OH LOOK MORE TOASTER WINDOWS FLYING UP WHILE I'M TRYING TO TYPE A REPLY. I'm sorry, was this forum designed by my nagging mother? "Blakeyrat, why don't you get a better job. Blakeyrat, you need a haircut, get a haircut. Blakeyrat, consider replying to several posts at once!"



  • @El_Heffe said:

    One of Alex's justifications for switching to this pile of fail is "actively maintained". What the fuck good is "actively maintained" if the people who are doing the maintaining have DELIBERATELY broken basic features that have existed in every GUI forever?

    Right. I want that to sink into everybody's head: the problem isn't that this forum is different, the problem is that it's broken.



  • @blakeyrat said:

    I hate to be that guy,

    Blakey.

    You have always been that guy.

    And it's okay.



  • I've switched to Chrome for Android now, to see if it's any better. It's more like CS, in that the toolbar and preview window are gone now. Let's see if it no longer mangles quotes inside quotes:

    This is a quote!
    And this is an inner quote.
    Back to the outer quote.
    Quoting over. Let's get some free kittens and pie.

  • Winner of the 2016 Presidential Election

    @dhromed said:

    I hate to be that guy,

    Blakey.

    You have always been that guy.

    And it's okay.

    It was just phrased badly. He meant to write: I hate that I am that guy.

    Filed under: Or perhaps "I hate the guy that I am"?



  • @blakeyrat said:

    Right. I want that to sink into everybody's head: the problem isn't that this forum is different, the problem is that it's broken.

    I hate to be the one who may invite a scathing nuclear blakeyrant, but I don't see how certain bits of it are broken. Home and End not working I can kind of see, and perhaps maybe they could whip up some code that would capture those keypresses and take you to the top/bottom of the topic, but pagination? I suppose this may just be a personal thing, but I prefer the one-page thing mostly since I tend to wander off mid-thread on long threads and forget where I was when I come back. Discourse's "last read" function works well for me there. I also may be a bit biased since another forum I frequent sometimes has been using Discourse for months and I've gotten used to the way it works.

    Haven't really tested its response on mobile yet, though I can't really do that here at work since I get absolute crap for cell reception in the office and have no WiFi available, but once I get home I'll test with my Nexus 5 & 7 and see if it's as bad as some people are saying it is over in the Frist thread.



  • No, I meant: "the guy actually saying something positive about this clusterfuck forum move". So far the one thing it's done best is work on Windows Phone 8. So there's a selling point for their home page.



  • @e4tmyl33t said:

    I hate to be the one who may invite a scathing nuclear blakeyrant, but I don't see how certain bits of it are broken.

    Then you are blind.

    @e4tmyl33t said:

    Home and End not working I can kind of see,

    Oh. So then you can see how it's broken, you were just writing that first sentence to lead us off the track. Clever.

    @e4tmyl33t said:

    and perhaps maybe they could whip up some code that would capture those keypresses and take you to the top/bottom of the topic

    And until they do that, it's broken. Let me remind you that this program is at version 0.9, and the Home and End keys do not work. Home and End keys, on webpages, work by default. They've gone WAY out of their way to ensure these features they'd get for free do not work.

    @e4tmyl33t said:

    I also may be a bit biased since another forum I frequent sometimes has been using Discourse for months and I've gotten used to the way it works.

    Yes, well Stockholm Syndrome is a pretty terrible way of promoting software. "I don't like it because it's good, I like it because I've been basically forced into it and now after months I kind of maybe don't hate it." COMPELLING!

    @e4tmyl33t said:

    Haven't really tested its response on mobile yet, though I can't really do that here at work since I get absolute crap for cell reception in the office and have no WiFi available, but once I get home I'll test with my Nexus 5 & 7 and see if it's as bad as some people are saying it is over in the Frist thread.

    It's working on mobile was one of the things mentioned back when Alex still seemed slightly open to feedback on what forum to use. So was disabling endless scrolling. As we see, neither of those two things (testing on popular mobile devices, disabling endless scrolling) ever happened. My guess is they never will.

    And the preview window STILL doesn't scroll along with the typing window. Do you consider that a bug? If not why not?



  • @blakeyrat said:

    Oh. So then you can see how it's broken, you were just writing that first sentence to lead us off the track. Clever.

    I did say that I didn't see how certain bits of it were broken that I had seen people mention.

    @blakeyrat said:

    Let me remind you that this program is at version 0.9, and the Home and End keys do not work. Home and End keys, on webpages, work by default. They've gone WAY out of their way to ensure these features they'd get for free do not work.

    On sites with static content, sure. On sites with dynamic loading of content, not so much (as evidenced). I had seen an older post in their Bug forum where it looked like they had made it so Home and End took you to the first and last posts in the topic, respectively, but I don't know if that got reverted or changed since then or not.

    @blakeyrat said:

    It's working on mobile was one of the things mentioned back when Alex still seemed slightly open to feedback on what forum to use. So was disabling endless scrolling. As we see, neither of those two things (testing on popular mobile devices, disabling endless scrolling) ever happened. My guess is they never will.

    The mobile device desting may be part of why Alex plopped this Discourse instance into existence. I doubt he was going to go buy a bunch of various mobile devices just to test this with, so maybe he decided to let us louts test it with whatever various devices we have and gather the feedback. Would've been nice to set that expectation if that was the case, though.

    @blakeyrat said:

    And the preview window STILL doesn't scroll along with the typing window. Do you consider that a bug? If not why not?

    No, I'll give you that one. That's a bug, and an annoying-as-shit one at that. The other Discourse forum does the same thing and it irks me there as well.



  • @e4tmyl33t said:

    but I don't know if that got reverted or changed since then or not.

    Maybe the QA team from today's front page article is working on it.



  • @blakeyrat said:

    And don't think of using the scrollwheel, that would be way to quick and easy so we wired the scrollwheel up to the main page content and not the preview pane thing.

    I'm not seeing this. All I need to do is move the mouse over the preview frame and it scrolls just fine. The top window scrolls if I keep scrolling after the preview has scrolled the whole way. I guess this is the difference in window managers, and it drives me nuts whenever I have to do something in Windows.



  • Oh and the only thing I really wanted, an ignore option for that disease Boomzilla, still doesn't exist.

    @boomzilla said:

    I'm not seeing this. All I need to do is move the mouse over the preview frame and it scrolls just fine.

    It doesn't scroll AS YOU TYPE numbnuts. Try it. What's the fucking POINT of a preview frame that doesn't actually show what you're actually typing unless you STOP typing and move your mouse and manually scroll it down and then you type three more words and you have to do it all over again!!!!!

    People can argue about Home and End, but that is definitely a bug, and a huge bug, and one that should have been fixed ages ago. It's ONE FUCKING LINE OF JAVASCRIPT: $('#div').scrollTo(99999999999999);


  • Winner of the 2016 Presidential Election

    @blakeyrat said:

    $('#div').scrollTo(99999999999999);

    That value may not be long enough if Ben posts an image.



  • @joe_edwards said:

    That value may not be long enough if Ben posts an image.

    Bug report: System allows posting of images from Dwarf Fortress.
    Status: critical



  • @blakeyrat said:

    It doesn't scroll AS YOU TYPE numbnuts.

    Fuck...how can you read and still not read?



  • I like that you can like things.

    Here's something for you all to read:



  • @dhromed said:

    Here's something for you all to read:

    I don't want to read that all in one scrolling page. It should be broken up over multiple pages.



  • Oh, this is interesting. When at the absolute top you get your username next to the little speech bubble.

    But scroll down a little and it disappears.

    Wonder why they chose to do that.



  • Wait... you don't think it's a... (whispers) bug, do you?



  • It's because the logo is guaranteed to be short enough but the topic title could be long.



  • @ben_lubar said:

    It's because the logo is guaranteed to be short enough but the topic title could be long.

    That makes no sense. See my reply-topic.

    Filed under: And stop trying to justify bad software. WTF, is Jeff Atwood your girlfriend?



  • @morbiuswilters said:

    ben_lubar said:
    It's because the logo is guaranteed to be short enough but the topic title could be long.

    That makes no sense. See my reply-topic.

    Filed under: And stop trying to justify bad software. WTF, is Jeff Atwood your girlfriend?

    I think you mean cat.



  • @dtech said:

    Copy of Lorne Kates's post on the old forums

    People have been complaining about not doing nesting quotes, how did you get them on your quote?



  • The click count on links is incorrect. Right-clicking also increments the counts.

    Well. ok, I guess technically it's a correct count.



  • > One

    >> Two

    >>> Three... But this isn't actual quoting... it's just making indentations.



  • I am unable to upload images, because I am new user. This is not good. I am here for so many years now.



  • OK, but what button did you hit to do the indentations @Zecc?



  • I think

    That it's just

    A series of

    >

    Repeated;

    Seems to

    work for me

    But you need to separate each level with newlines.



  • Ah, thanks and now I feel dumb for not understanding @Zecc.


  • Banned


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