Make post links more visible with new right gutter timeline


(Joshua Rosenfeld) #1

Well, here is a new topic for this idea! I’ll be quite honest and say I’m not really sure what would be the best solution to bring back visibility.

Some options (not exhaustive, nor exclusive of each other):

  1. Jeff’s idea to expand incoming links on post automatically
  2. Change color of x post links to blue, to match old formatting a little more. Makes the text pop more from below post controls.
  3. Move x post links above the post controls. Current positions sort-of hides itself, but putting above could be issue with numerous links.
  4. Provide option to collapes expanded links. Would help with #3, also just plain useful.
  5. Make #1 a site setting. Incoming links vary in their importance depending on the site.
  6. Automagically :dash: swoosh links into gutter when post is current. i.e. post #5 has links, when timeline is at 5/x, move links into gutter.
  7. Alternatively, expand links when timeline is at post, without moving them to gutter like #6.

Change right gutter to vertical timeline + topic controls
With the new right gutter, where should "Reply as Linked Topic" go?
(Jeff Atwood) #2

Just to be clear, it’s unlikely we’ll do anything with this in 1.6, but I do feel some of the ideas could have potential for future versions.

In particular I think incoming links deserve more escalation because they are hidden – they come from another post elsewhere on the site that you can’t obviously see. Whereas outgoing links are already quite obviously visible in the post, so they are a little bit redundant IMO.


(Joshua Rosenfeld) #3

Any chance for something to be done in 1.6? I know #2 is just CSS that a specific site could target, but that small tweak might be enough…


(Erlend Sogge Heggen) #4

I’m in favour of:

  • Expand if single incoming post link
  • Bundle if multiple incoming links (like now)
  • Don’t list outgoing links

Although we’ve always done it, I don’t see the need to list outgoing links. I probably didn’t mind it as much before since there was always ample room in the gutter anyhow. Now that we’ve moved Links into the post stream, it’s taking up prime screen real estate. Whatever we put there better be essential information.

If a link is hard to spot in a post then the post author has done a poor job exposing that link properly. If a link is easy to find in a post, as it should be, then all we’re doing is repeating ourselves.


(Dave McClure) #5

I really like this proposal. Only showing the incoming links would make them stand out much more by reducing visual noise.


(Dean Taylor) #6

The one thing I would like to see here is that if a user has created a link without the optional title then the title would be “cooked” with the topic title & post # from the linked post.

This allows me to hover over topics and know exactly what has been linked to without deciphering the URL and perhaps additionally provides more info for accessibility users.


(Dave McClure) #7

Related: Mini Onebox support


(Kevin P. Fleming) #8

Yes, I’ve already seen in-post links with useless titles (like ‘1’), and the lack of outgoing link listing in the right gutter meant I had no idea which topic was linked.


(Dave McClure) #9

But at least these you can hover over and see the URL at the bottom of your browser…


(Jeff Atwood) #10

The “just one incoming link” case is worth handling if it is not too hard @eviltrout. The rest I think we should wait on.


(Allen - Watchman Monitoring) #14

I feel that seeing the related links was a huge benefit, and look forward to their return.


(Sam Saffron) #15

I like what GitHub do here:

Incoming links are inserted into the timeline… for our purpose I would like to see a refined version of:


(Jeff Atwood) #16

I think that is fine, if we can rebuild to auto expand only when

  1. ALL the links are incoming links
  2. there is one link and it is an incoming link (same as #1, I guess)

(Joshua Rosenfeld) #17

So, does that mean if I include an outgoing internal link, incoming links won’t be auto-expanded? That is going to cause all sorts of confusion. What if incoming links were inserted into the timeline as suggested by @sam, and outgoing links (if they exist, stay where they currently are, with an option to expand?


(Allen - Watchman Monitoring) #18

What’s wrong with outgoing links?

I don’t see much value in listing external URLs but I do like knowing which other topics are related.


(Jeff Atwood) #19

Outgoing links are ultra-redundant. They already appear in the text, so where they are is obvious. Guess where the outgoing link is in this post?


(Joshua Rosenfeld) #20

Sure, that one is obvious, but where do these outgoing links point?

“this” and “this” isn’t clear at all.


(Jeff Atwood) #21

Quite clear; outgoing links exist in the post to be clicked on and will have click counters next to them calling them out even more. We can further obfuscate the outgoing link by making them . if you like? :wink:


(Allen - Watchman Monitoring) #22

I think we’re on same page already…

In your reply, mini onebox support (a link to another topic in the same discourse) is already included in the post-links.

The plain text http://meta.discourse.org is not in the list. Assuming it know that http≠https, this is the behavior I’m hoping for… just without having to click “post links”


(Joshua Rosenfeld) #23

No, that isn’t what I am concerned about. Where does “this” point to? I don’t want to click a link without knowing where it is going, and I shouldn’t have to look in the small text at the bottom of the screen to see what the actual link is. Mini-onebox support could handle this, however, eliminating the need for outgoing links in the post footer and/or timeline itself.

Edit: I am not concerned about outgoing post visibility, as you point out, blue text is pretty clearly a link somewhere. I am concerned where they point to…but looking up at my original post I see I am getting off-topic from my original thoughts…sorry! Will expand on my thoughts in the Mini-onebox topic.