With the new right gutter, where should "Reply as Linked Topic" go?

(Dave McClure) #15

No, probably not. Let’s just live without it for a while.

What I usually want to do is quote an existing topic when I start a new one, anyway. So I end up deleting the automatic “Continuing the discussion from…” text and link, and just let the quote be the reference.

And I often do this weird workaround anyway:

  1. Quote reply a few sections.
  2. Select all, cut
  3. Discard draft
  4. Go to front page
  5. Create new topic
  6. Paste
  7. Write topic and save it.

(cpradio) #16

Keyboard shortcuts. Use j/k to select a post and then press t

(cpradio) #17

You can save a step there using C to create a new topic, that way you don’t have to go to the front page. :wink:

(Jeff Atwood) #18

Interesting, so maybe “Quote Reply” should have the little drop down to select start a new topic, like this:

But then again as @cpradio pointed out the keyboard shortcuts also work for this kind of power user scenario…

(Dave McClure) #21

I could try that if it’s a lot easier than the spec above, but otherwise I’d go without the feature until the in-composer switch can be explored.

(Mittineague) #22

I came up with a couple of queries. The one finds “Reply as” topics, the other both “Reply as” and “copied link” topics.

WITH op_posts AS ( SELECT id 
                , raw
                FROM posts 
                WHERE post_number = 1
FROM op_posts 
WHERE raw LIKE '%Continuing the discussion from%'


WITH op_posts AS ( SELECT id 
                , raw
                FROM posts 
                WHERE post_number = 1
SELECT COUNT(topic_links.id)  
FROM topic_links 
JOIN op_posts 
ON topic_links.link_post_id = op_posts.id
WHERE topic_links.internal 
AND topic_links.reflection 

I tried a bit to get them into a single query but gave up (for now)

On my localhost I got 15 and 28 - so about half and half
But of course I use localhost to test things, not real statistical analysis.

IMHO it would be good to get real statistics from a real forum and use those in judging how prominent the feature should be.

If you use badge_posts instead of posts that should exclude private categories.

Also, I did not come up with a query to find “Mod split to new” topics. i.e. those that member(s) should have started a new topic, but made off-topic posts instead.

FROM posts 
WHERE action_code LIKE 'split_topic'
AND raw LIKE '%posts were split to a new topic%'

Granted, having a more visible “Reply as” probably won’t reduce off-topic posts much, but maybe.

What cool data explorer queries have you come up with?

I’m missing the reply as new topic button, plus the display of the new topics that were previously created from a post.

(Mittineague) #24

I’d be interested in seeing your statistics if you have Data Explorer and you don’t mind posting them.

WITH first_posts AS ( 
  SELECT COUNT(posts.id) 
  FROM posts 
  WHERE posts.post_number = 1 
  AND posts.deleted_at IS NULL 
  AND posts.post_type = 1 
  AND posts.raw LIKE '%Continuing the discussion from%' 
mod_splits AS ( 
  SELECT COUNT(posts.id) 
  FROM posts 
  WHERE posts.action_code 
  LIKE 'split_topic' 
  AND posts.raw LIKE '%posts were split to a new topic%' 
links_in_topics AS ( 
  FROM posts 
  JOIN topic_links 
  ON topic_links.link_post_id = posts.id 
  WHERE posts.post_number = 1 
  AND posts.deleted_at IS NULL 
  AND posts.post_type = 1 
  AND topic_links.reflection 
  AND topic_links.internal
SELECT first_posts.count AS replied_as_count
  , (links_in_topics.count - first_posts.count) AS cited_count
  , mod_splits.count AS off_topic_splits_count
FROM first_posts, links_in_topics, mod_splits

(Jay Pfaffman) #25

Me too. A client who needs reply-as-linked-topic just upgraded and now can’t find how to do reply-as-linked-topic. I don’t see it either.

Is it somewhere that I’m just not seeing it?

(Jay Pfaffman) #26

Oh. No. This might be OK if topics that were closed or permissions didn’t allow replies, but on my site the bulk of messages are reply-as-linked-topic messages. I suppose that I can re-train people to just start new messages and then not have the link back to the assignment that they are completing, but that’ll be a real drag.

(Tom Newsom) #27

Total topics on our site: 1192

replied_as_count: 17
cited_count: 54
off_topic_splits_count: 34

This feels like enough use to keep the feature. Its absence is certainly holding me off updating for now, at any rate.

(Tobias Eigen) #28

On my site:

total topics: 1197 (eerily close to @Tom_Newsom’s number!)

replied_as_count: 23
cited_count: 120
off_topic_splits_count: 3

(Tobias Eigen) #29

Just start a new topic and then return to the topic to quote reply. Or use the keyboard shortcut:

Edit: the t keyboard shortcut doesn’t actually work anymore?

Personally, my favorite solution is the one proposed by @codinghorror above. The reply buttons below each post could also have the pulldown to reply as new topic.

I’m ok with having the linked posts below each post.

(cpradio) #30

Yes it does… but you have to use j or k first so it knows which post you are continuing from

(Tobias Eigen) #31

ah - got it. thx. also see you explained this above. trying to keep up. :blush:

seems a bit weird that selecting a post via the vertical nav doesn’t work the same way.

(cpradio) #32

I could easily see a feature request asking t to work without any selection and when it does it uses the last post? Or should it use the first? (food for thought)

(Mittineague) #33

replied_as_count: 17
cited_count: 54
off_topic_splits_count: 34

replied_as_count: 23
cited_count: 120
off_topic_splits_count: 3

Two members isn’t a large dataset, but

it is interesting to see that a majority start new topics either quoting or posting a link to the “source” post.

Yet, I agree, the number of new topics started by using the Reply As is a considerable percentage.

I’m thinking making the work-around easier might be a good idea.

Similar to @erlend_sh 's mock-up

Add "Quote reply as new topic" button next to "Quote reply"
(Dave McClure) #34

The idea with trying to live without it for a while it to further validate that the feature is really necessary / valuable. The data above is another way to attempt to do the same thing.

I think what we’ve learned from that so far is that a favored way of replying as a linked topic is via quoting the source post, not just using the now-missing feature.

If we think the feature is valuable, then I agree with my former self, @erlend_sh, and now @Mittineague that we should explore being able to change a reply that is already being composed to a new-topic reply.

But this might be #pr-welcome material if it seems like an edge case and the core team has higher priorities.

(Auryn Macmillan) #35

Perhaps a little OT, but the one shortcoming I feel the “reply as linked topic” feature has is that linked topics are not represented in the flow of conversation. I think the feature would be more useful if linked topics generated something akin “closed” dialogue. This could still be displayed even after a topic has been closed.

(Jeff Atwood) #36

Er… what? The outgoing links are already in the post, so how are they not in the “flow of conversation”? The latest change was to expand incoming links, and that’s already deployed, so have a look at that here in existing topics.