I’d be interested in a feature to disable the auto-update on the main page - the feature where the topic list page will periodically check for new activity and, if found, add an update count to the page title and a bar at the top of the topic list reading “x or new updated topics. Click to show”. I suppose a checkbox in the settings, enabled by default, that could be disabled to stop the behavior.
I have some experience in Rails and JS development, and I’m willing to write it myself if the Discourse team would be open to a pull request.
Personally, I find it distracting to my usual forum workflow. I like to keep a forum main page open in a tab while I work, with a couple of topics that sound interesting open in other tabs, and periodically check on them. If the forum has any decent activity level, then the update counter is constantly updating and beckoning me to check/refresh it again. I’d like to be able to have it remain static until I explicitly refresh the page.