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Most important changes we'd like made to new format

kathymcmo's picture

I'm starting a new thread for us to list specific things that are "must haves" as they tweak this new software. Hope that's OK but I am having a lot of trouble sorting through the 77 messages in nonchronological order in the "same forum, new look" thread.
So what are your top 3-5 things that you think essential to get fixed?

To me, the most problematic things are:
1. Not being able to address your reply to a specific person, and therefore not being able to see whom other posters are addressing with their reply. This makes it nearly impossible to have a cogent conversation. I'm fine with not being able to e-mail a poster directly from the thread, but when I read one from Person X, I want to know which Person Y they are responding to.
2. Put the posts in chronological order. If there's a thread with 100 posts, 6 of which are new, you do get taken to the first of the six new posts, but then you have to read through the rest of the 100 posts to find the other five new ones. Taunton promised that this new format would bring CT up to industry standards, but I thought that meant 2009 standards, not 1989.
3. Could we please condense the left navigation column so that all threads open show, because I'm pretty sure there are more open in say, the Kitchen appliances folder than are showing.
4. Make it possible to scroll up and down in the Discussions navigation bar separately from the middle of the page where the threads are.

roz's picture

ITA, kathy, especially about

ITA, kathy, especially about to whom one is replying.

2. The left navigational column needs to have a separate scroll bar.

3. Less white space.

oh, 4. I don't think I want to 'see' my face every time I reply...or anyone else's face, either.

Be impeccable with your word. Don't take anything personally. Don't make assumptions. Do your best. Don Miguel Ruiz
MadMom's picture

ITA with both of the above

ITA with both of the above comments. The idea of seeing faces is kinda novel, but the newness wears off. It would be better if we had the ability to turn that off. I also agree with Tracy's comment about taking off the signatures. I removed mine, so hopefully others will take the hint. Also, some people's signatures seem to be appearing twice...what's up with that? I thought at first it might be from edited comments, but am not sure.

I remember years ago when we went to the new format (which is now the old format, LOL) and people complained mightily about not being able to see the message right below the one it was replying to. Well, we're back to that now, and people seem to prefer to see new messages, not the ones being replied to. I did like the ability to go back and reference the one being replied to if you wanted, which we seem to have lost.
Also want to echo the call for a method of getting rid of messages we've already read, without having to go back through tons of them. Before, we had the ability to go to Ipke, for example, or to unread messages, or the ability to mark all messages as being read. Will we have that again? The ads don't bother me, but am glad to see them on the sides, rather than sprinkled in with the messages as they were on several Delphi forums.

kathymcmo's picture

Yes in the old format it was

Yes in the old format it was simple to click back to a message if you were unsure what the new reply was referencing, and I prefer that. It's just too confusing for me now to see new posts hidden inbetween dozens of posts I read more than once while I hunt for the new ones.
Probably should start another thread about what is good/OK with the new format but I am pleased with how they're handling the ads, the animated ones seem to be placed well where they're not inhibiting reading of posts.

bwf17's picture

Before, when I was following

Before, when I was following a thread and had read many of the messages, when I went to that thread again, it took me to where I had finished there are 96 messages and I read 90 of opened to number 91.
Is this possible again?

RDA's picture

Thanks for this thread,

Thanks for this thread, kathy,
Just wanted you to know we're listening. Keep the feedback coming. . .we really apprecitate it!


MadMom's picture

Robyn, don't know how long

Robyn, don't know how long you've been with Taunton, but you have probably heard about all the moaning and groaning we did when we lost the old format and went to the new Delphi forums one. I have to chuckle that one of the biggest complaints then was that people didn't know what they were replying to, because the new messages were all put at the end, rather than interspersed like we were used to. I guess we'll get used to whatever you decide to throw at us, and hope you take the suggestions as just that...things we'd like to see. I, for one, appreciate the fact that FC lets us have this spot to meet and post and get to know one another...and we're not charged!

roz's picture

ITA agree with MadMom, thank

ITA agree with MadMom, thank you Taunton for allowing us to converse.

BTW, I missed ((((((you))))))) all yesterday!

Be impeccable with your word. Don't take anything personally. Don't make assumptions. Do your best. Don Miguel Ruiz
MEANCHEF's picture

Boy, I don't even know where

Boy, I don't even know where to start. I am completely lost. Having posts and replies scattered all over is bad bad bad. Where can we reply to ALL?

MEANCHEF's picture

We need the ability to see

We need the ability to see only what we haven't read when we log on. In have a feeling that this will be impossible as long as the posts are not listed sequentially.
The left side (discussion listings) should be far more condensed like before.
The pictures can go.

MEANCHEF's picture

Where did all ofn the old

Where did all ofn the old stuff go?? It seems that we can search for an old message if we know the message number - I assume this is someones idea of a joke. Who remembers old message numbers. LOL

kathymcmo's picture

To MeanChef: We can no longer

To MeanChef:
We can no longer address a post to someone in particular or to "all." Really think they must fix that quickly.
Love your avatar, BTW.

cyalexa's picture

ETA: This is in reply to

ETA: This is in reply to Robyn.

I'm sure we will find the advantages to this format once we learn more about using it and as you continue fine-tuning. In the meantime, the following are things I strongly prefered in the old format:

1. The chronologic order of posts and the way the thread opened where I left off on my last visit. It is very cumbersome to scroll through the entire thread to find the new posts. Please keep in mind that some threads get very long; at least one contained over 1000 posts and many contain over 100. BTW, I tried clicking on "Recent Replies" and that was somewhat helpful.

2. The drop-down boxes for directing our replies.

3. The ability to see, at a glance, whether or not I've posted a message in a folder.

4. The ability to scroll the left window and the messages separately. I think I could get used to the loss of this function but it was very helpful.

5. The ability to format with button clicks. In my #1 above, I would have liked to put the word "very" in bold but don't know how to use HTML tags. This is another thing I can get used to and perhaps, in fact, should thank you for forcing me to learn something new.

Thank you for the opportunity to provide input. I've only been a member about a year but during that time I have been visiting this forum daily (sometimes several times per day). I have learned a great deal and I've made some great friends. I think the participants are primarily responsible for this being such a great forum but the layout and ease of navigation were certainly contributing factors.

RDA's picture

cyalexa, Your reply is


Your reply is especially helpful. Thank you for it. In fact, I want to thank everyone participating in this discussion because it's given me a lot to work with. A nod to kathy, roz, madmom, bwf, and MEANCHEF (you don't seem so bad).

1) Indeed, "Recent Replies" is a great at-a-glance tool. I'm using it too, but I get your point.

2) I know! I agree.

3) Try this: Click on "My Profile" then click "Activity." Think of it almost like a "My Page." You can see all your posts and what folders they live in.

4) I hear you on this one too. It's the absence of frames at work here.

5) See the FAQs for some simple formatting info. You'll be amazed at how easy it is to bold something. If I can do it, anyone can.

On your last point: ". . .only been a member for about a year" and "visiting the forum several times per day. . ." I can't tell you how much I appreciate that. And, I understand the very real (not virtual) friendships that result from spending time here. We'll do everything we can to keep as many CooksTalk veterans as can stand the orange type happily reading and posting on the forum.


kathymcmo's picture

Just had an idea--perhaps you

Just had an idea--perhaps you can easily modify "Recent replies" to sort by thread? Because it would be a handy way to see what's new at a glance, except that all the replies are thrown together and it's like having Tourette's or something to try to get through it as it hops from one topic to another.

DJHinAZ's picture

Here are my comments. Some

Here are my comments. Some are duplicates, but I think that's ok.

1. When I open a thread, I don't want to have to scroll through all of the responses that I've already read. I want to jump right to the first one I haven't read. This doesn't seem to do that. I would really appreciate it if it would.

2. I want to be able to scroll through the topics on the left side independently from the thread I'm currently reading.

3. I would like to know which threads I've responded to. In the old format, I liked having the little thumb because I would be able to look for those quickly as ones I specifically have high interest in.

4. Similarly, it would be nice to know if someone addresses a particular question to me. This could be addressed by the ability to identify a particular recipient of a reply.

5. I am finding that I am opening a lot of things in new tabs so that I just need to close a tab to get back to the overall thread list. Otherwise I have to scroll all the way up to the top to click on the portion of the path I want to get to. This could be resolved by having the path (Home > Thread name > message) all the way at the bottom too.

6. The ability to search by topic, not just by message number. Out of all of the possible items to want to search by, the message number is the most unlikely item.

I'm used to forums such as the forum, and that seems to have a number of these options. I thought we'd be having something more like that forum.

Hoping to see some changes soon...

Thanks for listening.

Geoffchef's picture

Hi Robyn. Given that most

Hi Robyn. Given that most people are resistant to change, I tried to step back and see the positives of this new format and the advantages. Sorry, but the only one I found is that logging on takes one less step. I like that.
Otherwise, Kathy has, I think, listed the most important things. To put it in a nutshell, the more you can make the new site look and function like the old site the happier we will all be.


A protuberance in the throat of man, thoughtfully provided by Nature to keep the rope in place.
Ambrose Bierce - The Devil's Dictionary


StevenHB's picture

It's really important to me

It's really important to me to be able to see only those topics that have new (unread) messages since I last viewed the topic. Also, I want to be able to see just those topics that have new unread messages to me (or in direct response to a comment that I posted) - as infrequent as that may be ;-) . I want to filter on the things I'm most interested in, quickly.

Without coffee, chocolate, and beer, in that order, life as we know it would not be possible
shar999's picture

That orange color is very

That orange color is very hard on the eyes.

Florida2's picture

I agree with Steven's

I agree with Steven's comment

Also, the orange is hard to read. Couldnt we have words printed in standard black? The orange reminds me of the disastrous light orange color of the titles of recipes in Gourmet's Cookbook (the last one, not the current one)--hard to read.

Piffin's picture

florida By default, most


By default, most browsers show you the web page as formatted, but allow a user to view according to his own preferences for print colour, background, etc. edit preferences is I recall the way to get there.



Welcome to the
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evelyn's picture

I'm really trying to get used

I'm really trying to get used to this..............

In life, learn the rules so that you know how to break them properly.
kathymcmo's picture

After exploring this new

After exploring this new format for quite a while, I only just now saw the "new" in red type above people's photos--it's really lost there. It would be better if that were in the upper right of the post, although on the posts that are unframed by a screened background it would probably be appearing to hang in space. But it's hard to see now and seems like it's connected to the photo, like saying that Jean's photo is new.

Heather's picture

What does the red "new" mean?

What does the red "new" mean?

kathymcmo's picture

It means that is a new post

It means that is a new post (not that you are new!) So what do you think?

Heather's picture

Then it isn't working because

Then it isn't working because I just accidentally went to another thread that I had already read and all the posts said "new."

I'm trying to be patient, but I really hate this. I can't find anything, I don't know who is talking to whom, the orange is hard to read. . .I could go on and on. One the most annoying things is not being able to see all the current threads separately on the left side and have them scroll separately.

If things aren't vastly improved soon I'll probably quit, I don't have time for this. Leaving would make me very sad, I have made some great real and virtual friends here.

kathymcmo's picture

And I've been in some threads

And I've been in some threads where it said there were only a few new posts and it turned there were quite a few more that I'd not seen in the count on the navigation bar. Makes me wonder how many more I've missed.

PS this is a reply to Heather.

cyalexa's picture

Hi Heather, Please don't

Hi Heather,

Please don't quit.

When you are in the "home" view (and you probably need to be logged in), click on the orange (#new) in the left hand column to see only the new replies. The folders you have not opened since the change in format will all be new to you and yes, you will have to scroll through them to find the new replies. It's only once, then you can go directly to the new replies as described above.

Re. who is talking to whom, you are right about that. I'm going to try to put a salutation in my messages and cite the topic or comment if needed for clarity.

We've been told the search function is being improved. I hope so because I really want to make the orange marinated olives you referenced earlier and I have no idea what post id number it was. Last night I settled for taking a tiny bite of orange and olive at the same time. OK for nibbling while getting dinner ready but couldn't put out that way for friends!


Heather's picture

Cindy, I'll email you the

Cindy, I'll email you the olive recipe. I'd never be able to find it here either.

You are so right about needing to put some references in responses--I've read several "I totally agree with you" messages here and I have no idea who or what they are agreeing with.

Marcia's picture

Please don't leave, Heather.

Please don't leave, Heather. I hate this, too, but am hoping that things improve. I would miss you dreadfully, and there are so many things I miss already, that the loss of a valued friend would be terrible. Even if we've never met, you seem like a friend. I hope that is not overstepping bounds.

CT is almost my home, and I feel homesick. Why, oh why did Taunton do this? Money, I suppose, and I've no objection to that but I do object to this now wretched forum, and hope things improve.

Heather's picture

I'm going to keep trying for

I'm going to keep trying for a while, I hope major improvements will be made. I would miss all of you too! CT used to be such a comfortable place to be, let's hope it is again.