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November 8 2011 Site Upgrade

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 

Here is the proposed release for 11/8/11.  This should address some of the performance issues we have been hearing about.


User-Facing Improvements

Performance Improvements

We have completed the first milestone in Javascript performance improvement: removing YUI 2 Javascript library dependencies. This has two benefits. The first is an immediate decrease in JS page weight by about 440KB (uncompressed, or about 110KB if compression is enabled). This will not only reduce the payload side on the first page view on the site but also reduce the browser's Javascript engine initialization time. Second, it sets the groundwork that allows us to improve lazy-loading and to implement other client-side performance improvements across the entire UI layer. We are also now loading the join popover dialog only on-demand (for logged-out users). This too will decrease page weight, and provide a slight improvement to SEO.


Expanded Thread Editing Capabilities

Once a thread is created, both users and mods alike have limited ability to edit them. In this release we'll add several important new capabilities. These capabilities are accessed through the "Edit Thread" link. 




Users will be able to add and remove polls to a thread. Previously, a user could only add a poll to a thread at creation time. Now they can either remove an existing poll, or add a new poll. We also made it possible to change the poll expiration date. We have purposely not made it possible to change the poll answers, as this would result in skewed voting. Instead, you must delete and re-create the poll. If we find that users often want to change poll answers (and effectively restart the poll) then we may provide a way to migrate an old poll into a new poll in the future.



Personal Messages - Changing Who Gets Replied to

Currently our personal messages behave like a group message - if you send a PM to multiple users, every reply is effectively a "reply all". With this release we'll be adding the ability to "fork" off a message, and reply to a subset of users, or add new users. Let's take a look. Here is a PM I received. Normally, if I entered in a reply and hit "Send", it would reply to everyone who was originally included. Instead, I can click "change recipients"




This will open up a new PM, with the same users as before pre-filled into the To line, with any prior content inserted as a quote. This is effectively a new PM conversation.





Edit in Place

First, and most notably, post editing will now happen in-place. Editing a post used to jump down to the reply box at the bottom of the page, which was a fairly jarring experience. In-place editing is much smoother, and also means that the user doesn't lose their context.





Improvements to Lists in BBCode Editor

Remember you can select the default Rich Text Editor or BBCode (like vBulletin) in My Profile / Edit Account Details.

We've made a few improvements to lists in BBCode:

  • We now support multiple styles of lists (see the screenshot below)
  • Creating a new list pre-populates with 3 empty items, because really, who creates a list with only one item?
  • Selecting multiple lines of text and hitting the list button now correctly turns each line into its own bullet point





Submit Timeouts

Finally, a subtle but important improvement - we've added timeouts to submitting posts. When you hit the submit button in the editor, a layer covers the editor while the content is being sent to the server. However, if the submit hangs for any reason, this layer prevents you from retrieving your content so you can try again. It just spins and spins indefinitely. There is now a timeout, so that if the submit still isn't successful after 30 seconds, you can try again and/or copy and save the content.



  • "Mark Forums Read" now has options for this forum/all forums
  • Corrected tab ordering (switching fields using tab key) order in thread reply order
  • Corrected tab ordering (switching fields using tab key) when editing signature
  • Upped character limit on articles to 1MM


Flagging Content

Currently a user can report the same item...over and over and over.  This can result in unnecessary "flag" spam for admins and mods.  We've changed the way the flagging functionality works so that a user can only flag a post / review, etc. one time.  Any time they try to flag the same thing again, they will receive a message that says "You've already reported this item. Thanks for helping to make our community better."


We do want you to flag spam and objectionable posts so that the moderators know where to look. Please use the red flag at the bottom of a post you think needs our attention.



Bugs Fixed

As always, we're always fixing as many bugs as we can. Here's what we've fixed in this release:

  • Fixed problem of overlapping images and signatures in posts
  • Article titles don't get mangled anymore when using preview 
  • Fixed "last online" time display for users
  • Fixed strange white background on certain quote blocks
  • Full page editor for replies are now fixed and working normally again
  • Fixed several bugs with user awards
  • Fixed display of timestamps on reputation vote timestamps
  • Autocomplete for manually specifying list of editors of an article now works again
  • When a user adds an image to a product, it does not take over the existing "primary" image for the product
  • Removing primary image from a product's gallery also removes it from the main product display
  • Users are now able to save a product that doesn't have any details specified
  • New users will be shown the "Your profile will appear when you become more active" message instead of the generic welcome message when editing their profile
post #2 of 3

Thanks for letting know all this in advance!

post #3 of 3

Curious to see how much of an affect this has on performance. 

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