"Proper" Threading

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Moh Kohn
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Dec 26 2006 03:56
"Proper" Threading

Hey all. I've just recently rejoined these forums since the Big Hack (I was "anarchoal"), and something that's annoying me (and, I notice, others) is the tendency for long threads to wander off-topic. Also, the admins seem to have a horrible task in trying to move off-topic posts to new threads. Yuck.

Now I'm a usenet lad at heart. For years (since 1997 or so) I've been using "forums" that look like this: http://www.panic.com/unison/images/screenshot-messages.jpg

In case that isn't clear, replies are placed beneath and indented from their parents, so each thread becomes a bunch of sub-threads. Off-topic sections can be ignored, or in a web type environment easily split. A main discussion can carry on while everything goes to hell in another sub-thread. It's basically all far more sensible than the current drupal flat-threading system.

Here's an (ugly) example of a similar system being used on a (drupal-based, I think) web forum: http://beta.ivrpa.org/node/439

I'm trying to look into whether it's possible to implement this in drupal and how to do it, but if I could figure it out, would this feature be desirable?

Moh Kohn
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Joined: 22-12-06
Dec 26 2006 04:14

Here's a far prettier example, the drupal forums themselves:

http://drupal.org/node/105205

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MJ
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Dec 26 2006 06:08

So, like... nested?

Moh Kohn
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Dec 26 2006 06:32

Exactly.

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Tojiah
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Dec 26 2006 11:00

I approve. Nested threads for all.

Mike Harman
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Dec 26 2006 13:21

yeah drupal's forums are really designed for threaded discussions (god knows why). It'd be possible to move to this, but we figured it'd be really strange for a lot of people since new replies appear all over the thread, not just at the bottom.

If more people want to try it we could certainly do that.

Welcome back anarchoal/moh kohn anyway, good to see you again.

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MJ
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Dec 26 2006 13:47

Just realized where I recognized your (new) name from. grin

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Stripey
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Joined: 30-10-03
Dec 26 2006 14:22

heh, I thought that's who you were. grin

If you ask me we should just move to usenet full-on.

But nested messages would be a good start.

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Steven.
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Joined: 27-06-06
Dec 26 2006 15:29
Gwen wrote:
If you ask me we should just move to usenet full-on.

But nested messages would be a good start.

I don't understand, why would you want to go backwards in time like that? :?

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Jacques Roux
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Joined: 17-07-06
Dec 26 2006 16:55

Sorry - i detest nested forums. They are so old fashioned, i can understand why ppl who have been chatting online for the last 20 years would appreciate stuff like that, but i think its really illogical...

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Stripey
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Dec 26 2006 18:42
John. wrote:
I don't understand, why would you want to go backwards in time like that? :?

Because Usenet is more flexible and decentralised.

Mike Harman
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Joined: 7-02-06
Dec 26 2006 18:44

I was half thinking we could give people an individual option to select nested or not, but that obviously won't work because it depends on people replying to the actual thread.

The best thing we could have is easier splitting, I don't know how feasible is in the near future though.

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Refused
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Dec 26 2006 18:53
Gwen wrote:
John. wrote:
I don't understand, why would you want to go backwards in time like that? :?

Because Usenet is more flexible and decentralised.

Contrary to popular belief, it was never hip to be square. angry

Moh Kohn
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Joined: 22-12-06
Dec 27 2006 01:08
MJ wrote:
Just realized where I recognized your (new) name from. grin

Mushies, a spliff, and an artificially intelligent AK. That's me wink

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ginger
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Dec 27 2006 02:09

I know I don't post much, but I am frustrated with the current system and would prefer / use more a multi threaded (truely threaded) system.

I have been on web based forums (ok, it was a few (6-8) years ago) that had multi threading (a website called "bianca" fwiw) but maybe thats because most people using/writing the interweb back in the day expected a usenet model.

The reason I find libcom of limited use is that I don't use it for hours of every day so I find a subject that I find interesting and start contributing too frequently ends off at some other tangent, involving some banter/point scoring often on some minor point of the total debate, and I'd like to re enter at a different stage but that gets lost in the revol68 vs the rest epic battles...

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ginger
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Dec 27 2006 02:12

Oh, and the way bianca took care of it was by storing thread status for your user. Don't know if thats possible/desirable with drupal, but that means thst if you're logged in, the read posts are folded to just show their title and place in the tree, with new posts since you read that thread opened out. Makes it actually easier to figure out where you are and whats still to read especially if you're not on every day.

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Steven.
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Dec 27 2006 02:21

After the upgrade coming soon, jump to first unread post should be functioning again. As for commenting on stuff when things have moved off topic, just quoting the bit you want to respond to usually brings things back in.

I think asking for threading is trying to bring back the past...

Dundee_United
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Joined: 10-04-06
Dec 27 2006 02:47

I think threading would be a good idea for serious discussion. It does make sense. Of course it would still need administered but it would make the job easier and it would certainly give the forums more coherency and combat the tendency towards Revol moments to some extent.

Quote:
I think asking for threading is trying to bring back the past...

john you don't usually write things without thinking about things a fair bit so I'd be interested to hear why you think threading is not desireable.

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Stripey
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Dec 27 2006 03:21
Quote:
I think asking for threading is trying to bring back the past...

Just cause it's an old idea doesn't mean it's not a good one. ?

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georgestapleton
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Dec 27 2006 03:59
Gwen wrote:
Quote:
I think asking for threading is trying to bring back the past...

Just cause it's an old idea doesn't mean it's not a good one. ?

Says she about anarchism.

Wait...no.

Moh Kohn
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Joined: 22-12-06
Dec 27 2006 21:55

The way ginger describes bianca as working makes a lot of sense to me. Catch is right that the drupal forum style is confusing. A usenet client would bold the subject to solve this problem; ginger's suggestion is an improvement over that.

John, I'm not interested in this because it would be more similar to an old system that I like, perhaps I haven't been clear; I've found the threading style on libcom inferior, as in less practical/efficient for discussion, than other threading styles I've used. The comparison was to try an explain what I meant / why I've found it superior. Have you ever used a properly threaded discussion system?

Mike Harman
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Joined: 7-02-06
Dec 27 2006 22:54
John. wrote:
After the upgrade coming soon, jump to first unread post should be functioning again.

No, it won't, they've postponed it. angry

However I'm thinking as a temp measure we should give people the option to increase the number of comments per page (or increase it by default but let people reduce it). The links only don't work on multiple pages, so if we put more per page, then only really, really long threads will be messed up.

Fuck it, going to do that now.