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In the Name of God بسم الله

Bring back the Forum look please

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Can we please have an option of having a look at SC in the Forum format that SC used to have? I honestly want to log out and not use it in the current format. Make this look optional perhaps? Example of what I am talking about, if people have forgotten. Old members will remember this:

https://www.neowin.net/forum/

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27 minutes ago, Dreamcatcher said:

Can we please have an option of having a look at SC in the Forum format that SC used to have? I honestly want to log out and not use it in the current format. Make this look optional perhaps? Example of what I am talking about, if people have forgotten. Old members will remember this:

https://www.neowin.net/forum/

The old look brings back so many memories. You are not the first oldie to ask for it. Nor do I think it is under consideration.

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7 minutes ago, habib e najjaar said:

The old look brings back so many memories. You are not the first oldie to ask for it. Nor do I think it is under consideration.

I don't see why it cannot be brought back. I am thinking a simple on/off switch (theme) for this on the back end. I'll spam the Chief, @Ali constantly about this. Perhaps @Haji 2003 and @Hameedeh or better, @notme

May be start a Petition on the Whitehouse's website while I am at it.

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Just now, Dreamcatcher said:

I don't see why it cannot be brought back. I am thinking a simple on/off switch (theme) for this on the back end. I'll spam the Chief, @Ali constantly about this. Perhaps @Haji 2003 and @Hameedeh or better, @notme

May be start a Petition on the Whitehouse's website while I am at it.

Hmmm. I am wondering why is a new member insisting on changing our site layout, especially since this new layout was an experiment that was instituted and installed before you even joined.  

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Just now, Hameedeh said:

Hmmm. I am wondering why is a new member insisting on changing our site layout, especially since this new layout was an experiment that was instituted and installed before you even joined.  

I am an OLD timer gone Incognito for privacy/security concerns since this place is blocked here... must be doing good at it if the logs are not linking me to OLD account. :sunglasses:

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Even if the old look were brought back, it wouldn't bring back old times. Nostalgia is nice, sometimes bittersweet, but past is gone. Take the lessons the past offers and carry them into the future. 

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1 hour ago, ShiaChat Mod said:

Had no idea that Canada blocked ShiaChat. :rolleyes: 

:shifty:

1 hour ago, notme said:

Even if the old look were brought back, it wouldn't bring back old times. Nostalgia is nice, sometimes bittersweet, but past is gone. Take the lessons the past offers and carry them into the future. 

Not so much of nostolgia TBH, just that sometimes I end up visiting SC and go right back out seeing the horrible fluid forum view. Unless that's the goal here, to get rid of old timers :cry:.

It can be easily brought back, just enable "Table" view for members so we can choose how we wish to view the forum topics as. Currently it will be set to "Fluid" only.

https://invisioncommunity.com/news/product-updates/new-fluid-forum-view-r1026/

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1 hour ago, ShiaChat Mod said:

Had no idea that Canada blocked ShiaChat. :rolleyes: 

Maybe it's an orthographic problem. lf we went back to the old forum, l'd have to lug in and out and that will be difficult for me because l know that S.C has two Hs in it, but everytime l type them, they keep moving within the word. So, Canada probably cannut spel any bitter than eye due.

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All new topics are immediately together and accessible on the front page. Much more convenient in one list. 

If we had 10x the amount of topics, and there was more need for separation among them, the old table view could be better. Otherwise, as with our volume now, having the front page be 20 folders you have to click and explore individually is a pain.

Even so, the fluid view gives the option of filtering one or more subforums anyway, in case you don’t want the whole list (which isn’t that long to begin with).

“Nostalgia” is not enough of an argument against the advantages stated above.

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48 minutes ago, Dreamcatcher said:

It can be easily brought back, just enable "Table" view for members so we can choose how we wish to view the forum topics as. Currently it will be set to "Fluid" only.

No, because the site layout (ads, announcements, other boxes) are designed around the fluid view.

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I always just go straight to "unread posts". 

@Reza he said it's not nostalgia, just a preference. 

1 hour ago, Dreamcatcher said:

Not so much of nostolgia TBH, just that sometimes I end up visiting SC and go right back out seeing the horrible fluid forum view.

 But it is very different and took a lot of people some time to get used to. 

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12 hours ago, Reza said:

All new topics are immediately together and accessible on the front page. Much more convenient in one list. 

If we had 10x the amount of topics, and there was more need for separation among them, the old table view could be better. Otherwise, as with our volume now, having the front page be 20 folders you have to click and explore individually is a pain.

Even so, the fluid view gives the option of filtering one or more subforums anyway, in case you don’t want the whole list (which isn’t that long to begin with).

“Nostalgia” is not enough of an argument against the advantages stated above.

If new topics appearing immediately and accessible on the front page is the reason for this then the same Topic list can be put on the header under the ads and above the Forum categories or the side of regular Forum view. IPB has simple Blocks setup available for this as you must know.

I don't know why IPB thought Fluid view was a good idea, perhaps trying to copy Social media. Now the forums using it are neither Forums nor Social media platforms, just confused identity. The site was, is and should be a Forum, not anything else. Forums are supposed to have Categories, if some Categories are not doing well then Archive them, if a Category is not needed, Archive it. Topics and user volume was bound to go down because of this confused forum/social media look and feel.

Forums showing Categories will make people interact more.

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On 5/20/2020 at 5:57 PM, Dreamcatcher said:

It can be easily brought back, just enable "Table" view for members so we can choose how we wish to view the forum topics as. 

Dreamcatcher, Brother @Reza already gave you the short reply on why you cannot have the "table" view at this time:

On 5/20/2020 at 6:47 PM, Reza said:

No, because the site layout (ads, announcements, other boxes) are designed around the fluid view.

Now for the long reply:

The Admins began discussing the 4.2 upgrade on March 24, 2017, and there were many changes for the better that we enjoyed discussing. On April 23 we started discussing the fluid view. The 4.2 upgrade was going to be available in the summer of 2017. The upgrade was a really interesting and exciting thing for all of us. On June 3, Br. Reza created a topic in the Development Forum to inform Mods, Development Team, and Chat Mods about the 4.2 upgrade. All of the Team members could view the information about the upgrade and many wonderful features, and we had the same information that Dreamcatcher posted in the link above, about the option to choose your own view (table, grid or fluid). We were waiting on the upgrade to become available to us to install, and wondering when the Owner could find time to do it. We discussed that it had to be done by mid September because we didn't want to be going through any changes and reporting problems and fixing them during the Holy Month of Muharram, in late September that year.

Alhamdulillah, Br. @Ali upgraded the Site on August 12, 2017. Right away Team members asked to make changes in the brightness of colors, the boldness of the text, etc. Br. Reza, Br. Ali and Br. @Abbas. were replying to Team members and making changes to accommodate. Of course everyone was informed about the upgrade and members began to comment on the things they liked, but some reported bugs to be fixed. Br. Reza spent a lot of time replying to explain the 4.2 upgrade because for at least six months he was keeping up-to-date on all the upgraded features. Two days later, on August 14, Br. Reza told the Team members that the personal option to choose your own view (table, grid or fluid) was no longer available because he noticed that the chatbox and the ad banners were not visible unless the site was in the fluid view. So, by necessity, the fluid view became the default view at that time, even though a few members opposed it, because the chat and the ad banners are essential parts of the Site. 

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9 hours ago, Hameedeh said:

Dreamcatcher, Brother @Reza already gave you the short reply on why you cannot have the "table" view at this time:

Now for the long reply:

The Admins began discussing the 4.2 upgrade on March 24, 2017, and there were many changes for the better that we enjoyed discussing. On April 23 we started discussing the fluid view. The 4.2 upgrade was going to be available in the summer of 2017. The upgrade was a really interesting and exciting thing for all of us. On June 3, Br. Reza created a topic in the Development Forum to inform Mods, Development Team, and Chat Mods about the 4.2 upgrade. All of the Team members could view the information about the upgrade and many wonderful features, and we had the same information that Dreamcatcher posted in the link above, about the option to choose your own view (table, grid or fluid). We were waiting on the upgrade to become available to us to install, and wondering when the Owner could find time to do it. We discussed that it had to be done by mid September because we didn't want to be going through any changes and reporting problems and fixing them during the Holy Month of Muharram, in late September that year.

Alhamdulillah, Br. @Ali upgraded the Site on August 12, 2017. Right away Team members asked to make changes in the brightness of colors, the boldness of the text, etc. Br. Reza, Br. Ali and Br. @Abbas. were replying to Team members and making changes to accommodate. Of course everyone was informed about the upgrade and members began to comment on the things they liked, but some reported bugs to be fixed. Br. Reza spent a lot of time replying to explain the 4.2 upgrade because for at least six months he was keeping up-to-date on all the upgraded features. Two days later, on August 14, Br. Reza told the Team members that the personal option to choose your own view (table, grid or fluid) was no longer available because he noticed that the chatbox and the ad banners were not visible unless the site was in the fluid view. So, by necessity, the fluid view became the default view at that time, even though a few members opposed it, because the chat and the ad banners are essential parts of the Site. 

I appreciate all the efforts Admins/Mods put up here. I do apologize if a topic like this offends any of the Team members.

With that said, if the Default view cannot be changed due to the Forum's preference then Fluid should remain but saying ads, announcements are designed around the fluid view and thus cannot work is not correct. May be due a bug in the old software, this issue came up. Otherwise, all these "BLOCKS" remain the same whether it is Fluid view or Forum view or Grid view. That's how IPB designed their system. It would be additional work otherwise if Admins had to redesign everything for each view type. The only thing that will vanish when going from "Fluid" to "Forum" will be the Forum list in Fluid view, all the Blocks below it will come on top in Forum view, that's it.

Fluid view [Note the position of PLACE HOLDER FOR CHAT APP/PLUGIN]

WQPdhtwU_o.png

Forum view [Note the position of PLACE HOLDER FOR CHAT APP/PLUGIN]

yDuym2fb_o.png

 

Anyway, I won't be responding any further about this. If it's done, I'll appreciate it, if not then thank you all the same.

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Posted (edited)
On 5/22/2020 at 1:38 PM, Dreamcatcher said:

Anyway, I won't be responding any further about this. If it's done, I'll appreciate it, if not then thank you all the same.

Thanks for the discussion. This is above my paygrade. We need to wait for the Site Owner to reply. @Ali

Edited by ShiaChat Mod
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The ads work fine with both classic or fluid views (with a line or two of extra code).  I'm not a big fan of the new view but the change happened when I was MIA and I believe it was as a result of majority members liking it?  I don't know.

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On 5/22/2020 at 11:47 PM, ShiaChat Mod said:

Thanks for the discussion. This is above my paygrade. We need to wait for the Site Owner to reply. @Ali

 

18 hours ago, Ali said:

The ads work fine with both classic or fluid views (with a line or two of extra code).  I'm not a big fan of the new view but the change happened when I was MIA and I believe it was as a result of majority members liking it?  I don't know.

and he has spoken.

:NH:

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Posted (edited)
On 5/27/2020 at 7:48 PM, Ali said:

I believe it was as a result of majority members liking it? 

I remember it being enforced against many objections from members and mods. 

After having experienced that layout I must say that I saw a couple of advantages. The most significant was that some important topics gained more visibility instead of needing to be sought after in subforums. It's also more suitable for the more impatient mode of browsing in the modern Internet age.

Some of us argued against it because we saw this site as a structured repository of information.

So how do you decide to change it? Votes?

Edited by Muhammed Ali
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5 hours ago, Muhammed Ali said:

I remember it being enforced against many objections from members and mods. 

After having experienced that layout I must say that I saw a couple of advantages. The most significant was that some important topics gained more visibility instead of needing to be sought after in subforums. It's also more suitable for the more impatient mode of browsing in the modern Internet age.

Some of us argued against it because we saw this site as a structured repository of information.

So how do you decide to change it? Votes?

This was all on me. 

The fluid list layout was an exciting new feature, resembling the newsfeed style of modern sites like Reddit, Facebook, etc, which is how the internet is used today. The old table layout seemed like an outdated relic of the early 2000s, and opening each subforum separately was tedious, increasing the chances of topics being overlooked. Nonetheless, some older members had nostalgia for it and complained about the change, which was expected. That's the story of life. But most members, especially newly registered ones after the change, did not share much negative feedback as far as I know. The advantages you outlined were the reason. 

This change wasn't radical. The subforums were not eliminated, so the organized repository by category was still intact. It was just accessed differently. 

People were requesting an option between the styles, but I chose not to because it affected the placement of ads, and also I wanted everyone to share one common site experience. I also wanted to see how people would adapt to it, which I believe most people did. However, after reflection on this experiment, and since the ad situation got fixed, I decided to add the toggle between styles, so members can use what they want. Customization is another demand of the modern internet. Also, it's been noted to me that many forums ultimately have kept the traditional table format, likely because forums have entrenched conservative communities, who are often change resistant. Of course, we want the veterans to be happy, but we also need to adapt to attract new younger members, who may have different user preferences and expectations. 

So far this week, I'm finding myself still using the fluid view to see the new topics. 

I did this by consultation with others, but since I do the bulk of the site's tech work, most decisions were ultimately mine. 

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36 minutes ago, Reza said:

This change wasn't radical. The subforums were not eliminated, so the organized repository by category was still intact. It was just accessed differently. 

I remember that many categories were merged and this caused objections.

There are disadvantages to this.

  1. I think people will be less likely to make posts on certain topics because they do not want those topics to appear on the font page. E.g. a thread about a particular video game seems inappropriate on the front page of an Islamic forum. So fewer threads will be created.
  2. A greater number of subcategories afford themselves to posts being made for those categories. E.g. if a person sees a subforum just for sports, they will be more likely to make a thread about sports.

I actually much prefer discussion forums. Reddit and social media dumbed down discussions. It's a shame that forums died away. All those ex-members are probably engaged in lower quality discussions.

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45 minutes ago, Muhammed Ali said:

I remember that many categories were merged and this caused objections.

There are disadvantages to this.

  1. I think people will be less likely to make posts on certain topics because they do not want those topics to appear on the font page. E.g. a thread about a particular video game seems inappropriate on the front page of an Islamic forum. So fewer threads will be created.
  2. A greater number of subcategories afford themselves to posts being made for those categories. E.g. if a person sees a subforum just for sports, they will be more likely to make a thread about sports.

The merging of subforums was a separate issue, way before the fluid view. We used to have too many subforums (40+), and it was too bloated for any average user to access most of them. Many became inactive, and you'd see the last post from a month ago! This was another shake up that some older members opposed, but it had to be done. If anyone thinks a new subforum is warranted and should be split from an existing one, they can propose that and prove its viability. But from my standpoint, this is a discussion forum, not a library or academic directory. 

Point #1 is plausible, but I didn't see any evidence for this, except for maybe sensitive issue topics. If anything, having everything together in fluid view increased a member's chances of opening a thread on a subject they wouldn't ordinarily seek, just because it was super convenient. Most people want their created thread to be viewed and replied as much as possible. 

Point #2 is also logical. However, clubs were designed with this in mind, and they aren't very active. Also, it's overwhelming to have too many choices of subforums. There are members here who post any topic, no matter what it is, in "General" or "Off Topic", because they don't want to spend a few seconds discerning where the best place is. They don't have the archivist mentality. 

Of course, my mind can change from any of my points above. 

45 minutes ago, Muhammed Ali said:

I actually much prefer discussion forums. Reddit and social media dumbed down discussions. It's a shame that forums died away. All those ex-members are probably engaged in lower quality discussions.

Content and structure are separate issues, unless you think one influences the other. When a site structure is more accessible to more people, that could possibly lead to a diluted discussion. But it could also enhance it. 

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For those who are wondering what the 3 options for viewing are (table, grid or fluid), at the top of the homepage (not the top of this topic) click on the one that works best for your device.

This image is what you can look for on your device: 

3options.jpg

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Posted (edited)

l think the members above who prefer more demarcation of forums need to identify which ones we use to have.

l remember when there was some regional segregation of topics, somewhere.

Western Asia, Central Asia, East Asia, Europe, North Africa, Sub-Sahara, South America, North America, Oceania . . . for example.

l do not think another radical change is warranted.

Edited by hasanhh
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