Communicate on new features proposal

I like what instagram is doing a lot and think we should maybe learn from it.


Each time a new major feature is released a “New!” appears in your story, touching it will tell you more about this new feature.

I propose we do the same with a new pinned topic each time we think we have a new major feature “COMMON USERS” would need to know about.

In the recent events of discourse I think that HTML pasting and local-dates could have made a good use of this for example.

It should probably go with a site setting to enable or disable it.

Technically it would probably be some kind of seed we will add and create if some conditions (global setting activated, this specific setting is activated on the forum…) are reached.

This thought come from a discussion with @david on making people use local-dates more. I think it’s Discourse job to make the feature the simplest possible to use, but also to give the tools to “educate” users. We currently do a good job to communicate new features to forum owners but I think we still lack on communicating with end users.


I like this idea, could these be posted in the default Meta category that we ship with?

I also wonder if this is an indication that some features are hard to find and we could help out a bit? Could we be smarter about certain functionality?

For example, the first time someone types a date… could we show them a JIT “hey did you know about this feature”? Would that be too annoying for basic users?


That was actually the gist of our conversation with David, I replied that date parsing in different locales + all formats would be extremely complicated (and prone to errors). But I agree the first effort should be to make sure the feature is easy enough to use/discover. And there are certainly things to improve on local-dates.


I am not too enthused about spamming users on the site with notifications or topics automatically. On meta-only, maybe…

But I think it may make sense to have “digest emails” have a section that teaches users about recent changes.

Here is the new content you missed out on!
Here are some new recent Discourse features you are not aware of!

We would have to be very careful here, but making a more powerful digest is always a good thing. It also ties in to allowing admins to occasionally add content to digests which can be very powerful.


I feel like we have this one sorted these days!

And the notification stream shows a :gift: linking to it :confetti_ball:

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