On Friday, 23 February 2018 at 13:47:16 UTC, biocyberman wrote:
So, even though I wanted to get away with using stackoverflow.com

A bunch of us are on stackoverflow too, and it could use some more stuff. I like SO for archiving too, even if you get an answer here, SO is a lot easier to search so copying the answer to there to be a clean reference for later might be worthwhile.


I used to be a pretty heavy phpbb user and the #1 feature I wished it had was a better email interface. You can turn on subscriptions and get some notifications, but I wanted it to just include the text of the post in the email too!

The reason is that I like to keep up on basically all posts. I don't necessarily read them all, but I do skim everything posted on the learn, general, and announce groups. Everything.

On a web forum, the time spent clicking and loading links would actually make that pretty painful (I do still do it on some low traffic phpbb sites tho), and getting the notifications can have lag between responding.

With email, I know within a few minutes of a post that it was there, and I can skim it in a matter of seconds from any location that I'm online.

I understand though that the casual user isn't interested in following everything so this isn't as important to everyone else... but it is a major plus for me.

1. No post editting. After clicking send, and found out that you made mistakes in the post, but you can't edit the post anymore.

I think you meant "editing" ;)

But I didn't like edits on phpbb either because they are really hard to see. There's no notification of an edit and finding the before and after difference is just really painful.

So I prefer the follow-up post anyway, unless perhaps it is within a few minutes and the post hasn't actually been read by anyone yet. On phpbb, I would proofread stuff with preview before sending. Here... well, I don't do that, and I think we should just encourage that by making the "Send" button actually be "Preview" - force them to see it before hitting the final send.

2. Old-day quoting presentation. I always feel reluctant to read texts that stays after two levels of quotes, like this:

Yeah, this is terrible, but it is bad form to over quote anyway, including on phpbb. You should quote just enough to jog the reader's memory of the topic, and cut the rest out. If you need the parent, the "in reply to" link on the side (or in the email) can pull it back up in full.

So I generally just ignore most quoted things in posts.

3. No Rich-text format support. No minimal bold/italic support.

You can always write *this*. Or [b]this[/b]. It might not be automatically rendered, but the reader will know what you meant.

4. No code formatting. Same feeling here. I am reluctant to post more than 5 lines of code.

So for this, I almost always use ddoc style:

code here

And again, it isn't automatically rendered, but we know what it means.

5. No image support. In many cases a screenshots will be helpful to communicate problems.

yeah. links to images are ok though.

6. Last but not least, a trendy feature: tags, keywords for threads so we can locate related threads easily.

and I'm meh on this just because I don't think a forum is really useful for referencing later anyway. There's some value in the archive if you really want to see people's old arguments, but for stuff like Q&A, I'd rather copy/paste that end result over to Stack Overflow.

I would like to enjoy a full joy of using the forum, like you are having.

So I use the emails for most reading. Only go on the web interface to post (the email reply thing is buggy. I'd really rather use it though), or to navigate old stuff/share existing links.

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