As some of you may already know, I am developing custom forum software.

I would like some feedback pertaining to the things you do and do not like about the current forum software/layout.

Thanks. -SpooK
Posted on 2007-12-24 12:05:53 by SpooK
The search function rarely finds what I'm looking for or finds it and -with it- many irrelevant topics/posts (and I actually have to search through the search results). So a decent, or at least better than this one, search function would satisfy me fully ^^ This forum already contains answers for almost every question imaginable. So it is important I think to make it accessible via a search or any other mechanism.
Posted on 2007-12-24 15:14:00 by ti_mo_n
What I really like is the ability to pick the skin I want (apollo).  I'm so tired of blue everywhere I look, it's nice to have a different color scheme and sharp graphics rather than the fuzzy stuff everyone seems to like these days.
Posted on 2007-12-24 18:32:30 by JimG

I DO like:

      [*] The color schemes.
      [*] The search engine.
      [*] The code and the quote boxes' styles.
      [*] The server's response speed.
      [*] How I get notified of new posts while I am posting a reply.

I do NOT like:

      [*] The small buttons on top of the windows. I can barely notice when I have a new message in my inbox.
      [*] The compactness of the number forum's boards, categorized into a narrow amount.
Posted on 2007-12-25 10:23:51 by XCHG
Wants (some of which this forum already has):

  • bbcode, can't do without

  • avatars and smileys, they make things livelier

  • inline (and thumbable etc.) images like on donationcoder. Autho-thumbnailing of large images.

  • geshi (or better?) syntax-coloring engine for <code> tags

  • spoiler tag

  • better search engine

  • color schemes (or perhaps even more flexible than that - yay XML/CSS)

  • AJAX - or rather, as few full-page refreshes as possible/convenient

  • nice (AJAX :P) moderator tools when splitting/joining/moving threads

  • a bit more modular/categorized than now, the forums became too "flat", imho

  • user-configurable tab spacing in <code> tags

  • better/more visible bar for private messages

Want nots:

  • security holes

  • other bugs

  • slowness and laggyness

  • too nested/branchy/deep (sub)forum structure

Btw, you should give Vanilla a spin. I don't in any way suggest we should use Vanilla instead of a custom forum, but part of the look&feel in Vanilla is nice, and you could get some inspiration :)
Posted on 2007-12-25 15:44:27 by f0dder
I do have a pet peeve with searches, trailing spaces (and perhaps leading ones) are truncated. This makes it very difficult to search for com for example as a huge number of unrelated posts match the criteria of *com* when you may only want com. Also I don't think there is any way to do a case sensitive search which should also be included, for example Windows and windows should not necessarily be equivalent as one is used for the OS the other for a GUI component, another good example for case sensitive is NaN which would exclude words like unanswered or maintenance when you are looking for information related to the FPU and real numbers.

Posted on 2007-12-25 17:00:43 by donkey
donkey: for NaN and COM, you want to search for "full words" instead of "anything matching"... and for NaN specifically, you probably don't want case insensitivity since many people are careless when writing.

But definitely a way NOT to do any auto-wildcarding would be nice, as well as being able to use quotes to search for "a string with spaces"... a NOT specifier, date range, and perhaps some meta tags (like author:f0dder).
Posted on 2007-12-25 18:32:11 by f0dder
Hi f0dder,

For "full words" or "anything matching", I am not sure where you are specifying them, in advanced search on the forum the choices are "Match All words" or "Match Any Words" neither of which has the behavior I would like, in both cases searching for NaN will find maintenance.

Posted on 2007-12-26 20:28:05 by donkey

For "full words" or "anything matching", I am not sure where you are specifying them, in advanced search on the forum the choices are "Match All words" or "Match Any Words" neither of which has the behavior I would like, in both cases searching for NaN will find maintenance.

Sorry, wasn't clear enough, didn't mean you could do it with the current search, but rather the way it should be done with new software. And that sentence sucked.
Posted on 2007-12-27 02:09:08 by f0dder
Well, case-sensitivity is only a check-box away ;)
Posted on 2007-12-27 08:49:17 by SpooK

Well, case-sensitivity is only a check-box away ;)

Where? :)
Posted on 2007-12-27 08:52:48 by f0dder
I really miss the sidebar for its list of unread posts. Though even then it listed only 5 posts, so still I had to go around the sub-forums half of the time.
Searching feels more natural when it's google-style. Instead of the "term1 AND term2" format, that seemed to be necessary before. Searching for an exact phrase also was lacking or inexisting. I often find myself searching the board for posts I saw/wrote years ago, and it's not easy to find them even if I can recite the thread's contents by heart ^^".
Posted on 2008-01-11 20:32:14 by Ultrano
I missed the sidebar for a few minutes too, but that was because I couldn't find the who's online thing. Then, I saw it at the bottom. :D It's a lot less cluttered without the sidebar. Good job. :D
Posted on 2008-01-12 10:45:10 by HKothari