HTs on Global/Forum

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Revision as of 00:35, 21 February 2009 by Mod-Karlthegreat (talk | contribs)

Keywords: (forum), (search function)

By: HT-Tjecken 7831771.41 as reply to 7831771.1
To: Everyone 22.1.2007 at 16:43
Reply to (7831762.992)

I think a lot of managers spend most of their HT time in the internal forum system. The HT forum system is not so bad, but one thing is really missing, a search function!

Are you thinking about this issue or probably about a new forum system?

We've been thinking about a search function - yes, and I would also love that. The "only" problem with a search function is that it requires a lot of resources, resourses we don't have at the moment. We've also been discussing other solutions like opening up the forums for reading for non Hattrick users, and that way allowing search engines to take care of it. But that's not a non-trivial thing either. But we know it's a very wanted feature, so it's more or less always on our agenda and will remain there in the future too.

Keywords: (forum), (conference down), (database)

By: HT-Thomas 11113785.12 as reply to 11113785.11
To: enigmamz 14.4.2008 at 18:07
So the conferences are back online again. Any new stuff to be seen^^?

They likely just erased a lot of the old archive threads that no one could ever want to see.

Namely, the locked ones.

No, just database move and major upgrade.

Keywords: (forum), (conference down), (search function)

By: HT-Thomas 11113785.16 as reply to 11113785.14
To: MadsBen 14.4.2008 at 21:30
More room for archived threads, which no-one can find, due to the lack of a search function.

Not entirely wrong. More CPU and disk, but but also a solution for eventual future search feature. :)

Keywords: (forum), (conference down)

By: HT-Thomas 11113785.17 as reply to 11113785.13
To: enigmamz 14.4.2008 at 21:32
Meaning, what? How will the new upgrade manifest itself?

You won't notice much else than better performance during high loads. Not yet though as we are still running maintenance, but online.

Keywords: (forum), (new forum)

By: HT-Johan 12291248. as reply to 12291248.
To: clawy 19.12.2008 at 11:50
The next day the desing was launced, the numbers plumbed. There weren't 100k since the new format was introduced.

The weekly average for the 6 weeks preceding the design change were all around 95000 posts, climbing down from a peak at the start of the season of around 110 000 per week. There is a very clear downward trend both as a season draws to an end, and around holiday time, so the small drop we might extrapolate from the last week could be seasonal, or it could be due to the new design, or a combination of course, but even so it does not look to be any bigger than about 5 %.

In any case, we will keep developing the forums, naturally we want them to be efficient and pleasant to use for everyone.

Keywords: (forum), (new forum)

By: HT-Johan 12291248.27 as reply to 12291248.25
To: Catalyst2950 19.12.2008 at 13:08
I still haven't heard an explanation why Hattrick had 60-100% more conference posts two years ago. Compared to some days in December 2006, the number of posts _halved_.

Sadly, HT wasn't very friendly to, so the entire 2008 is empty and getting data from earlier years is hard or impossible...

And I still can only guess at the reasons. Some is due to lower user numbers, but that would only explain maybe 10 percent. I also don´t think the drop is as big as you describe, last season change we averaged around 120 000 posts for a few weeks and the numbers we presented back then were probably chosen in a similar fashion.

It could also be that users are more active in their early days as users, which would mean higher fporum activity after a period of strong growth, as in 2006, and less now, when numbers has been stable for a long time.

The forums did not change much over that time so I doubt there is a technical reason, other than perhaps less complaints on lagging servers :)

Keywords: (forum), (new forum)

By: HT-Johan 12291248.36 as reply to 12291248.30
To: Lou_Dog 19.12.2008 at 20:08
Come now, you can´t use a comparison between 2006 and today for a discussion about the new forum. That drop in forum usage can not possibly have had anything to do with the forum we have used the past week - and you know it. That decline was a fact months ago as I have already showed. You could just as well say those numbers show us that the old conferences caused the usage to drop, they were what we used while the drop happened. Of course the explanation is not that simple.

We want to make the forums the best they can be. If you think the old system was perfect and could not be improved upon, fine, but we don´t see it that way, I think we can arrive at something that is better than the old system and also an improvement on the new. Of course the functionality we had in the old system is still in the toolbox if we need it.

Keywords: (forum), (new forum)

By: HT-Josef 12291248.68 as reply to 12291248.67
To: Bounce 8.1.2009 at 21:52
Any response from a HT ?

I'm not in favor of bringing the conferences back, they had their flaws, mainly a steep learning curve. This forum too has its flaws, but I'll be working on getting rid of them over the coming month(s). I will happily take any lists of suggestions of improvements, but I can't promise they will all be implemented!

Keywords: (forum), (new forum)

By: HT-Josef 12291248.71 as reply to 12291248.70
To: mikan 8.1.2009 at 22:03
i don't know if you were using conferences daily for many years... but if you were, you should pretty much know what to do.

step 1 should be: give us ALL functionality that we had with conferences.

besides, i think that our wish-list is very well explained in many topics... primarily in [new]forum

I seriously doubt Hattricks forum system will be brought back to exactly what it was, and personally (speaking only for myself now) I would oppose such a thing.

It would be great if someone (or perhaps a few people) could compile a list, so I wouldn't have a to read through thousands of posts. Although I have read most of those topics from start to end I've been on vacation and forgot most of what I read *blushes*.

I've only been using Hattricks conferences for about a year, but I've been using forums for 8-9 years. Sometimes up to 12-18 hours/day (luckily not always though ^^).

Keywords: (forum), (new forum)

By: HT-Josef 12291248.83 as reply to 12291248.82
To: Minervca 9.1.2009 at 16:49
The plumetting number of daily posts is probably no stranger to this renewed interest ;)

Actually I created it on my own accord. Besides, knowing that we had (at least in my opinion) very nice discussions with staff and that they gave way for a series of positive changes I figured I would try it on Global as well. The reason I didn't do this earlier was because I wanted things to settle down, and I wanted to give people time to get accustomed to the new forums. Not to mention I was doing something most users think the HTs are doing all days, namely being lazy. I was on Christmas vacation after all :)

The problem that us developers usually have with actively participating in the forums is that it tends to take a lot of our time. I have 8 hours/day that I need to distribute (unless I want to give up additional spare time and work for free). When I get to work in the morning I have a list of things that according to the users should have been done yesterday, add to that the need to actively participate in the forums to gather input on features you have recently written and you soon find yourself working 12-hour shifts instead of 8.

Personally I try to count my forum time as 50% working time, i.e. I do half of it on my spare time since I'm hired to code, not talk in the forums all day. I can understand that some HTs hold back on using the forums as much as I do for that reason, and seeing how I spend some of my working time in the forums, those who don't are probably more productive than me when it comes to delivering code.

Keywords: (forum), (new forum)

By: HT-Josef 12291248.85 as reply to 12291248.84
To: Minerveca 9.1.2009 at 19:15
by plumetting numbers of post, I meant by the users at large. I do understand that in your job description it doesn't say be active on the forums, as it might say in Tjecken's job description.

I must say that you have indeed worked your butts off for the release and in the days after. And your Christmas vacation was well earned :). I've seen it first hand. I just find it a bit alarming that the number of daily posts has stagnated at around 85K when we were well above 95K before the release. That's all I meant :)

Yes, I understood as much. I just wanted to tell you a few of the reasons to why we didn't reach out for input on Global earlier.

The post-count has dropped from 160k a few years ago to 80k now, the new design and the coming forum improvements are all measures to increase activity and make the game more enjoyable.

Keywords: (forum), (new forum)

By: HT-Josef 12291248.89 as reply to 12291248.86
To: LukEr 10.1.2009 at 18:23
* bring back the sticky / polls for conferences

Bring sticky and polls back? What is that? We have them now, and to my knowledge they work just as in the old design.

* trust the users who were active on the conferences before you changed the design

Fact is the polls that have been made in some league forums (Italian and Polish that I've seen so far) have said that a majority of the people think the new forums are as good as the old ones or better. They are new however, and details need to be fine-tuned, that is what we are about to do.

* accept that the money/time invested in changing the conferences are lost forever

I don't think that me and HT-Jyrg have wasted our time coding them. They need fine-tuning but that's minor compared to the code base the forum stands on right now.

Don't let programmers who are not at least familiar with the old design to change the conferences. If they were Internet forum addicted it's even worst They don't know the smell and feeling of the old format, they think that bbphp looks nice which is totally wrong.

Yes, I happen to like phpBB, but most of all I like custom forums (homebrewn). And yes, I've been very active in other types of forums. Majority of the functionality in the forum is decided by our usability-guys though, which have been deciding how things should work throughout the rest of the site as well.

Keywords: (forum), (new forum)

By: HT-Josef 12291248.105 as reply to 12291248.93
To: LukEr 12.1.2009 at 03:30
Don't tell me that you don't know that before, in the old design, the poll in the feds were acting like the sticky threads in the global/national conferences (till they expired)?!

If that's the case I have nothing to say more ...
I guess we all understand now why we don't like the new design, we miss a lot the old functionalities, and the new users or the new hires @ HT are not understanding these facts.

The old polls were sticky by default, in the new design you can choose whether to make it sticky or not. It's actually an improvement over how it used to work.

Keywords: (forum), (new forum)

By: HT-Josef 12291248.106 as reply to 12291248.94
To: Catalyst2950 12.1.2009 at 03:32
* bring back the sticky / polls for conferences

Bring sticky and polls back? What is that? We have them now, and to my knowledge they work just as in the old design.

They don't.

The default and only sensible way of actually using the forums is through the "New posts" tab. Stickies and polls aren't shown there, unless there are new posts in them.

That was because the old equivalent of new posts (auto-expanded forums) was occupied 30-50% by stickies at all times.

EDIT: The new functionality called "New posts" show just that, new posts. If a sticky or poll doesn't contain any new posts it doesn't belong there.

Keywords: (forum), (new forum)

By: HT-Josef 12291248.107 as reply to 12291248.96
To: Kristoffer_ 12.1.2009 at 03:35
What about adding the feature of making your own stickies ?

So that every time i klick fx Global (english) fx i could choose up to 3 threads from that forum that would be a sticky...(be put in the top of the threads)

That would be a really great feature...:) hope you see its potential :)

Perhaps as a supporter feature, but isn't that kind of what bookmarked threads are? Maybe they should just be more visible/accessible in the forums. Feel free to make a suggestions in (12372267.1) anyway!

Keywords: (forum), (new forum)

By: HT-Josef 12291248.112 as reply to 12291248.111
To: PanFiluta 12.1.2009 at 12:17
Lol, "forums"

I want to check the forum of my new league, so I go to II.1 and click on the league forum..... I end up in forum of III.11, my current league.... So I think it wants refresh or what. So I click the arrow and go to II.1 again and then I click to II.2 and back to II.1 and click on the league forum....... bang, I am in II.2 forum...... So I think "lol" and I click on II.4 and then return to II.1 and click on league forum........ yay, I am not suprised to find myself in forum of II.4....
So I go back to II.1, click F5 to refresh this way and click league forum........ and still I am getting to forum of II.4 :D
Lol, do I have to go to II.4 or maybe VII.333 to get to forum of II.1 ?
Looks like it shows the forum of the previous league that you looked on. Your "forum" sucks.

That is because the linking on the league page is wrong I think, not because of the forums :)

Keywords: (forum), (new forum), (forum 1.1)

By: HT-Josef 12500258.1 as reply to ?
To: Everyone 3.2.2009 at 17:34
A set of updates for the forum are coming right up, err, has arrived! We've tried taking in input in the forums and working on the flaws in the forum.

The sudden release of the forum changes was caused by an issue with bringing part of our code "live", in the end we had to bring all changes live. For me to roll-back all changes I had made the past few weeks, manually, would take several days and kill a lot of time that I could have spent on making things better.

If you experience any issues, please try emptying your browser cache or simply clicking F5 before reporting them, it might be caused by old CSS (stylesheets) stored on your computer.

Change log:

  • Numerous CSS tweaks.
  • Tweaked the front-page, made it conform with the left menu, made it less cluttered and added paging and an additional list "Bookmarked users messages", which works just like "Messages to me".
  • New posts/Truncated signatures are now default.
  • Clicking the orange new messages will mark them as read (i.e. mark thread as read).
  • Added a new section under Shortcuts ("Threads I have created").
  • Added the ability to show Avatar and info/Info/Avatar and None.
  • Re-introduced the "View message" feature, disabled by default but can be enabled under the forum settings.
  • Tweaked the settings page, forums can now be sorted with drag and drop. Also introduced icons instead of text for forum sorting. [This feature is slightly buggy and will be tested more on Stage]
  • An icon for subscribed/bookmarked threads has been introduced (an orange cartoon bubble), which is placed where the regular Sticky/Locked/Poll icons are, in the left menu.
  • Threads where a bookmarked user has written something that you have yet to read will be highlighted with orange text in the left menu.
  • An orange box will be displayed on the front-page notifying the users of the customize their settings for an improved forum experience. Once it has been closed, it will not return.
  • When viewing an ignored thread there will now be a red box notifying you that the thread is ignored (similar to when reading a closed thread).
  • The "New messages"-tab has been tweaked, it now prioritizes bookmarked and subscribed threads as well as threads in which your bookmarked users have written before when the message was written.
  • Fixed a bug where you couldn't preview "Bookmarked users messages" properly.
  • Fixed the bug where some links to teams wouldn't work.
  • ND #5132 (Messages to me doesn't fit the screen).
  • Fixed overflowing divs in Messages to me and Bookmarked users messages.
  • Fixed a layout bug in the left menu (the refresh icon ended up on its own row in IE).
  • Added the "v" parameter here and there, where it was missing. This makes sure that your tabs don't jump to "All" all of a sudden but stays on the one you have selected.
  • Fixed bug in IE7 where the Close-button would end up outside the alert box on the front-page.
  • Fixed a bug where "Messages to me" and "Bookmarked users messages" overflowed in some languages.
  • Reduced white-space on the front-page when a list is empty.
  • Made the settings icon in the forum RTL-compliant.
  • Enabled avatars and info in the simple skin.
  • Altered the message header in both skins.
  • "Messages to me" and "My bookmarked users messages" now display ignored threads as well (complaints were made about ignored threads not un-ignoring themselves when a bookmarked user wrote in them, I figure why not keep the thread ignored and highlight the message itself instead).
  • Added link to settings in simple skin (text link).
  • Changed the priority order of the cartoon bubble (subscribed/ignored) to the following:
  1. Sticky
  2. Poll
  3. Locked
  4. Subscribed
  • Fixed the bug where the crumb would disappear in IE6 (for real this time!).

Keywords: (forum), (new forum), (forum 1.1)

By: HT-Josef 12500258.19 as reply to 12500258.15
To: ---Jibe--- 3.2.2009 at 18:41
---Jibe--- wrote:

I think that these changes are a great improvement! Well done. The only thing I don't like about it are the doublelined headers. Is there anything to get the break out of there?

The message headers and the "new posts" message selection is currently being discussed in Stage. We might as well discuss those issues here as well now that we released the forums. Feel free to come with any suggestions on how to solve either in a prettier way.

Keywords: (forum), (new forum), (forum 1.1)

By: HT-Josef 12500258.28 as reply to 12500258.25
To: Bizkeks 3.2.2009 at 19:38
Bizkeks wrote:

How about a user post count? But one that doesn't show up directly when posting, otherwise there'd be a lot of spamming. Or a kharma system similar to the one on PHPbb-based forums?

We discussed it and came to the conclusion that showing the post count can become a false indicator of experience (even showing an abstract representation of the post count as a "level" or such). A user with many posts might not be experienced, while a user with few posts might be. It could be taken the wrong way and it would encourage spam to reach the higher levels.

Keywords: (forum), (new forum), (forum 1.1)

By: HT-Josef 12500258.33 as reply to 12500258.32
To: Bizkeks 3.2.2009 at 19:50
Bizkeks wrote:

Fair enough. :)

Oh, and one more thing. You should definitely keep the look of these avatars, they really make you feel like you're part of a community. Much better than user-uploaded seizure-inducing .gifs and images of scantily clad models. Being able to customize them and choose from a variety of facial templates would probably be the final straw convincing me to renew my Supporter package.

I'm glad you like them. You will most likely be able to customize your manager avatar in the future :)

Keywords: (forum), (new forum), (forum 1.1), (search)

By: HT-Josef 12500258.61 as reply to 12500258.54
To: pingus 3.2.2009 at 21:10
pingus wrote:

looks better, Thanks!

At any time will there be a search function in the forums?

With the database software we have at hand, and with the enormous amount of posts and threads to scan (we are the ~4th biggest forum in the world) it's not possible to search the forums in an efficient manner. With expensive new software and a few days of devtime it should be possible, but that's a project for the future (and most likely a supporter feature).

Keywords: (forum), (new forum), (forum 1.1)

By: HT-Josef 12500258.75 as reply to 12500258.70
To: EchoMan 3.2.2009 at 23:10
- It is not very obvious that you have to use the scroll wheel in the message header to find out who the message is in answer to. How does that work for users w/o a scroll wheel mouse?

Try refreshing your browser cache by clicking the F5 key. If that doesn't help then please tell me which browser you are using and I will take a closer look at it.

- I have had issues with the forum all day. It has changed its behaviour several times. Is this quote : [...] ... not valid anymore?

It is still the case. The reason we released all code today was due to a specific issue with moving parts of our stage code to our live servers (it basically forced us to spend many hours on workarounds or releasing everything). We thought that since the things on Stage have at least been tested for a while it should be decently safe to release them, and we didn't want to spent a lot of devtime on something that would only be a temporary fix preventing live users from seeing stage features.

Will it happen again? Probably, but it shouldn't happen often.

Keywords: (forum), (new forum), (forum 1.1)

By: HT-Josef 12500258.77 as reply to 12500258.72
To: Lou_Dog 3.2.2009 at 23:12

With expensive new software and a few days of devtime it should be possible, but that's a project for the future (and most likely a supporter feature).

Please note to think about it carefully. Not everything which sounds plausibly indeed is: It could have massive community drawbacks you can´t even imagine. Easy example: We easy could expect a standard reply in newbie conference something like "RTFM or use the conference search". I don´t think you (or anyone wants that). I assume you wrote this without considering immediate actions so i will not go deeper into this issue...

Good work with v1.1!


I think the PROs outweigh the CONs by far in terms of a search feature, and if its limited to supporters (which it most likely will be), your example wouldn't be plausible since most new users wouldn't have access to the search feature. But there will be a while before we have that feature, so we have plenty of time to work on the details in the meanwhile.

Keywords: (forum), (new forum), (forum 1.1), (search)

By: HT-Josef 12500258.317 as reply to 12500258.316
To: Sporti69 10.2.2009 at 13:39
Sporti69 wrote:

What kind of database do we use to store hundreds of millions of entries?

I am just talking about the forum data. Is that 1 table/topic or all divided in (limited entry) tables. (5 tables of 40 millions records)

Interested because I am working on a new big forum...

Well, I am a little limited in talking about our technical solutions. You could do with one single table for forums, threads and post respectively. Back when the forum was created it wasn't as easy since the tools provided weren't as efficient, so it ended up being split in two; an archive part with older and less frequently used data, and a part with the active data (that way we seldom have to search the brutal volumes of threads and messages in the archive).

Keywords: (forum), (new forum), (forum 1.1), (search)

By: HT-Josef 12500258.327 as reply to 12500258.321
To: Sporti69 10.2.2009 at 14:08
Of course I understand that analysis and technical backbone is restricted to board and development.

What you tell me is that a database system (examples: oracle, mysql, access) is, in combo with a good server, fast enough to process queries in a second (or 2). Even if the table contains 100 millions record like so: