Replies Counter Confusion



  • I'm confused as to what circumstances trigger the reply to indicator and the number of replies counter. This is an image of three responses in a thread, all replying to the previous post. The first one has an indicator that it is in reply to a previous comment by a particular user, none of the others have this. The second, and only the second, has the reply counter widget that can be expanded to show all responses.

    So, why the inconsistency, or is this just more of the magic of civilised discourse?



  • For the missing in-reply-to indicator, it only shows if you are replying to something without quoting from it.



  • OK, that makes sense. Is there maybe some similar logic governing the reply counter widget display, then, that I just haven't worked out yet?



  • I just know about the in-reply-to one because there was a bunch of discussion about it a while back (also note that on other installs of discourse it is suppressed if you are replying to the thing directly above you, but that suppression was turned off here).



  • @grkvlt said:

    a particular user

    Ahem.

    Also, the reply indicators logic is screwed up despite multiple people insisting that they should just show for each reply. The counters too. Just... just move on.


    Filed under: i'm not even sure if this will show as a reply, it doesn't, because reasons



  • ORLY? I could swear that the user indicator used to be there, but it has now disappeared from your comment!

    I are not correct.

    EDIT - That's interesting, markdown formatting closes any HTML formatting elements, like the strike-through above that should end at the end of my sentence...



  • Let's see if I can relay all the conditions off the top of my head:

    • The "in-reply-to" at the top of a post shows up when you reply to a post but do not quote any post.
    • It does not show up if you reply to the first post or click the "Reply" button at the bottom of the topic.
    • There is an option to suppress the "in-reply-to" if the reply is the previous post. It is by default on, but disabled here right now.
    • Quoting any post changes your reply to the quoted posts, and not the post you clicked the reply button on.
    • The "replies" box at the bottom of a post only shows up when there is a reply to the post that is not the subsequent post.
    • The first post only counts posts with a quote of the first post as a reply, so only quoted posts show as replies to the first post.
    • There is an option to suppress the "replies" box if the only reply is the subsequent post. It is by default on, but apparently now disabled here.
    • Any posts added while the topic is viewed may break the above, but reopening the topic will reassert the above.

    That covers everything, I believe, after checking something about replies.



  • Discurse is less unpleasant to use if you just ignore whatever it tells you about number of posts or replies, because it's probably wrong.



  • I think the reply counter chains when I reply to you, and you replied to someone else.

    Nope, I'm wrong. Just kidding.



  • This post is deleted!


  • No, or at least only in one direction - back. Your comment, although linking to mine via the indicator above, which in turn is a reply to @locallunatic, does not show in the list of two replies to that original GP comment. But the two parent and GP comments are shown when I click on the indicator above yours...



  • Ah, I see what it's doing. The 'Reply To' button is putting the replies in line on the original post. My post got a '1 reply' when you replied to me.

    So theoretically...



  • Replying to myself will increment this to two replies.

    Which it did.


  • sockdevs

    This all makes no freakin' sense to me.



  • This will change your post to have '1 reply' in the bottom left corner.

    Or not, because you aren't special enough.



  • No, but this will to two replies

    Because @Matches reply is now counted :frog:



  • @Arantor said:

    This all makes no freakin' sense

    FTFY



  • No but THIS will.



  • I think it's the main post: In reply to : In reply to to force the 'reply to' to show up.

    The original post never gets updated when it's not in direct reply to somebody.

    [b]For clarity[/b]
    Replying to the topic, and having people reply to you will NOT trigger 'x replies'

    Replying to a user, and having people reply to you WILL trigger 'x replies'


  • sockdevs

    Seriously, if you have a feature that is so confusing that a group of experienced programmers have trouble understanding how it is supposed to (or actually does) work... maybe the feature is broken. Maybe it's badly implemented. Maybe it's badly designed.

    Maybe YAGNI should be followed.

    You'd have thought that after 30+ years of forums we'd understand by now how to build one, wouldn't you?



  • I figured it out. Where's my cookie.

    http://what.thedailywtf.com/t/replies-counter-confusion/1320/19?u=matches

    @sam can we change this behavior to be consistent though? <3



  • Almost. Remember that '1 Reply' will not be shown if the reply is directly after the comment it's replying to. Unless someone else replies, when it will, but with '2 Replies'. Because obviously.



  • Oh. Really?

    God dammit.



  • It's more civilised, I think.


  • sockdevs

    If this is what civility is like, I'm fucking proud to be a barbarian.


  • Banned

    @grkvlt said:

    Unless someone else replies, when it will, but with '2 Replies'. Because obviously.

    suppress reply directly above is disabled here but suppress reply directly below is enabled.

    Up to @PJH if he wants to turn the volume up any more.

    (though I do need to fix it so it does not expand a reply that is on-screen cause that is kind of crazy)



  • I think the argument is for replies to always show, or never show. Not some mixture of both.


  • Banned

    Up to @dhromed or @PJH to change it, personally I don't mind, your community your rules.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @sam said:

    suppress reply directly below is enabled.

    Didn't not disabled this. See how it goes.


    By the way, mobile admin screen needs attention...


  • Banned

    Anyway, if you feel like disabling the second suppression, go ahead. its your call


  • Banned

    Perhaps this is a clearer way to explain it. The reason the suppression exists is because this pattern is extremely common:

    Sally: bleh
    Dave: reply to above
    Sally: reply to above
    Dave: reply to above
    (repeat until someone is no longer Wrong On The Internet, aka This May Go On For Quite a While)

    Basically a "chain" of sequential, single replies. Unless you suppress metadata on sequential, single replies the metadata gets really annoying and becomes, wait for it...

    a barrier to reading

    Note that each word there matters:

    1. Sequential (immediately under or above)
      Replies that are non-sequential need more help to be connected, whereas it is kind of obvious that things directly adjacent to each other are very, very likely to be related.
    2. Single
      Posts with multiple replies should be called out, as the author said something that a number of people thought worthy of response. But one reply is, in golf terms, "par". Marginally more interesting than posts with zero replies, but clearly way less interesting than a post with, say, five replies. That's huge.

    Both of these conditions must be true for suppression.

    (remember that "reply" means either someone quoted your post, or explicitly clicked "reply" on it.)


  • sockdevs

    And this is precisely the use case that the dreaded threaded replies sets out to solve - where two users create a sub-conversation inside a main conversion.

    What intrigues me is that I've seen firm arguments from you against it and yet this is about providing some of the context for it without actually doing it.


  • Banned

    Like I have said before, I think the case for threading here is among the strongest of any site I've visited. Primarily because most discussion sites at least pretend to care about being on topic.

    Here, notsomuch.



  • @codinghorror said:

    Primarily because most discussion sites at least pretend to care about being on topic.

    Here, notsomuch.

    We're on a topic most of the time. It's just that what you call topics and what we call topics are two unrelated groupings of posts.



  • Actually, they are usually fairly decently grouped sets of posts, that flow between two or more (usually) associated topics like a sin wave.



  • In this post, I refer to Discourse topics as t-topics and TDWTF topics as d-topics

    Oh look, a markdown bug. Well, at least the ones that get it wrong on Babelmark 2 get it more wrong...


    A t-topic can contain more than one d-topic, and a d-topic can be contained by more than one t-topic.

    D-topics that are not in the first post of t-topics generally cover more posts.


  • :belt_onion:

    @ben_lubar said:

    We're on a topic most of the time. It's just that what you call topics and what we call topics are two unrelated groupings of posts.

    The problem, for us, is that Discourse enforces the topic paradigm.

    We, however, tend to spawn a lot of threads within one... well, main thread I guess. Jeff would like us to fork(); to new topics, but we tend to pthread_create();

    @codinghorror said:

    Like I have said before, I think the case for threading here is among the strongest of any site I've visited.

    Yeah. What he said.


  • Banned

    Here's an annotated screenshot illustrating what I meant when I said

    @codinghorror said:

    Unless you suppress metadata on sequential, single replies the metadata gets really annoying and becomes {insert joke here}

    I personally find this level of metadata highly oppressive, and unfortunately, sequential, single replies are quite common in most discussions. That's why it's suppressed by default.


  • Banned

    @Onyx said:

    What he said

    To be clear, I still don't think you should pursue threaded discussions, because they have way more cons than pros. If you were doing "threaded" in your old flat as a pancake CS forums, that's the real WTF. It's like saying hey, we like smoking here, we don't care if it causes cancer.

    But as a hill to die on, for valor and The Way Things Ought to Be, threaded makes so so so much more sense than pagination.

    At least threading has some valid pros. Pagination has none.



  • Except that's not a proper chain. The first one should be an aggregate count of all replies, and each subsequent would be n-1 replies so you can follow the whole thread as you reach that part of the conversation. 1 reply on 10 posts is meaningless.



  • Except being able to scroll to the top or bottom of a page to see related content or header information in a reasonable amount of time using the scroll bar or mouse wheel?



  • @HardwareGeek said:

    Discurse WTDWTF is less unpleasant to use if you just ignore whatever it tells you about number of posts or replies, because it's probably wrong.

    FTFY.

    @codinghorror said:

    Here's an annotated screenshot illustrating what I meant when I said

    I see nothing wrong with this screenshot. Sure, it might not make too much sense in this particular case, but at least it's consistent. It behaves as you'd expect it to, even if it's sometimes wrong.

    Also, the "quote is reply" thing is idiotic. If I click a reply button under a post, I want to reply to that post, goddammit. I know better.

    @codinghorror said:

    To be clear, I still don't think you should pursue threaded discussions, because they have way more cons than pros.

    We're big kids now and can decide for ourselves, but thanks for concern.

    @codinghorror said:

    At least threading has some valid pros. Pagination has none.

    Except about $MAX_INT of those we already raised?



  • Now now, be fair. Max int is a big number. Is more like abs ((tdwtf post count - like thread post count) /2)



  • @codinghorror said:

    I personally find this level of metadata highly oppressive

    Seriously? Oppressive? Abusing words like this is a barrier to communication (I could read it just fine).

    @codinghorror said:

    But as a hill to die on, for valor and The Way Things Ought to Be, threaded makes so so so much more sense than pagination.

    You got those backwards.



  • The die to Hill on is much better, you're right.


  • sockdevs

    Actually, you'd be surprised how off-topic forums get.

    It's almost like Jeff has never actually used forums before except for very specific things.


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