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A place to work on posts January 19, 2006 3:59 PM   Subscribe

It would be nice to have a little place (possibly on one's own user page) where one could work on posts.
posted by interrobang to Feature Requests at 3:59 PM (37 comments total)

My idea is this: each user would have a little "coment box" somewhere—possibly on their own user-page—with the "link" button at the bottom, where they can start posts, working at them over however long it takes to accumulate a decent amount of links to make the post really good, while they work on the post.

Say I wanted to make a post about, oh, say, spirit photography. I'd have my own little place on metafilter where I'd write something like:

"Spirit photography started in 18—, and was part of the naturalist movement that believed that photography was completely objective. However, it was easily faked, and exposed many times, often to hilarious results."

I'd have that paragraph, based on my initial research, and as I investigated the topic further, I'd accumulate—and read—links, and I'd be able to add more content to my post, over time. Or, I'd find opposing views, and alter the post. All of this would be saved, and I could return to it for editing before posting it to the "front page", making it a better post.
posted by interrobang at 4:00 PM on January 19, 2006


...and by "coment box", I mean, of course, "comment box".
posted by interrobang at 4:00 PM on January 19, 2006


GYOB.
posted by Gyan at 4:01 PM on January 19, 2006


I use notepad. (what's the mac equivalent? my ignorance prevails.)

I mean, not that I've made any posts recently, but I've answered a few AskMe q's in pretty lengthy detail using MS Notepad as my, well, notepad. also, I have a bookmarks folder that's ostensibly for collecting links worthy of FPPs, and another folder for post-in-progress write-ups. cut'n'paste from there, and preview multiple times to finish it.

I understand that you want the functionality here on this website; I'm only pointing out a DIY alternative that works great for me.
posted by carsonb at 4:14 PM on January 19, 2006 [1 favorite]


When I began posting on AOL's message boards about ten years ago, my connection used to crash while I was typing a post. There was no "save" function; whatever I had typed was gone forever. So I began drafting posts with offline software — TextEdit, today. I think it's easier than using a browser window, because I can cycle through programs while I'm working.

Barring that, you could create a Wikipedia account. As long as you don't attract attention by treading into the administrative pages, you can put damn near whatever you want on your user page.
posted by cribcage at 4:14 PM on January 19, 2006


"I began drafting posts with offline software "

Notepad, wordpad, vi, emacs, etc. These are not new concepts, I trust.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 4:16 PM on January 19, 2006


(what's the mac equivalent? my ignorance prevails.)

TextEdit, TextWrangler, BBEdit.

FWIW, I think interrobang's idea is a good one. Anything that puts more time between a FPP and it being published is probably a good thing.
posted by Rothko at 4:19 PM on January 19, 2006


While plenty of text editors exist and if I remember correctly, there was even a post recently on MetaTalk about an OSX thingee and a Firefox extension which allows you to save/restore the contents of a textbox, I think interrobang has a good idea- some of us use multiple computers and would like to be able to save this sort of thing online so we can access it from anywhere. A well-thought-out FPP is a lot nicer than a hurried one.

Perhaps a small wiki-esque area on each userpage or within preferences wouldn't be too difficult a pony? I promise to feed it every day and brush its mane and stuff.
posted by JMOZ at 4:31 PM on January 19, 2006


You can always store this sort of thing on your own userpage at the MeFi Wiki, if you really want an online place to work on your posts instead of Notepad.
posted by Gator at 5:04 PM on January 19, 2006


Anything that puts more time between a FPP and it being published is probably a good thing.

Bring back JRun errors!
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 5:20 PM on January 19, 2006


You can always store this sort of thing on your own userpage at the MeFi Wiki, if you really want an online place to work on your posts instead of Notepad.

That's an interesting alternative, Gator. I thought it'd be nice if we could store them here, but since RichardP has to monitor the wiki so closely for spam, any additional changes to the wiki--since you can't log in to edit it--might make his job harder.
posted by interrobang at 5:25 PM on January 19, 2006


The wiki is tailor-made for this sort of thing, I'm not sure what you mean about not being able to log in and edit it, I do that all the time.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 5:31 PM on January 19, 2006


I'm not sure what you mean about not being able to log in and edit it, I do that all the time.

On the metachat wiki, you have to log in to update or change pages. As far as I know, anyone can change the metafilter wiki, which is why there's so much spam there.
posted by interrobang at 5:33 PM on January 19, 2006


I wouldn't run FF without SessionSaver. It restores tabs, windows, textareas, you name it.
posted by kcm at 5:36 PM on January 19, 2006


I don't make many posts here, but when I'm working on that sort of thing and want it accessable in many places, I tend to use my gmail inbasket and 'save draft'. There are also a fair number of notepad saving sites that offer this same function.
posted by jacquilynne at 5:37 PM on January 19, 2006


There's two wiki things: anyone can edit it AND you can log in to edit it but you don't have to. If RichardP scans the recent changes list and sees that interrobang was working on the interrobang user page, I bet he just skims right by it. It might be a neat idea to see if the MeFi wiki could be made so that only logged in users could edit it.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 5:39 PM on January 19, 2006


Everything2.com has this feature - they call it "scratch pad".

It's nice because it allows you to store data and drafts online, and it allows you to preview how the formatting and links will look and work.

There's also an option to make it public or private.

The benefits of using an online scratchpad or sandbox like this are numerous. You can log in and retrieve a project you've been working on from anywhere.

Me, I've been saving stuff in drafts in gmail.
posted by loquacious at 5:46 PM on January 19, 2006


Using gmail is a good idea, loquacious. I just thought it'd be nice to have a personal "library" here on the site where one could store, and edit, ideas.
posted by interrobang at 6:02 PM on January 19, 2006


Jess: there was a discussion about the wiki a week ago. It turns out that RichardP is using some sort of clever bot to automatically keep the wiki spam-free so I don't think there would be any problem about using your userpage to draft posts.

He and Adrian were also going to discuss password-protecting the wiki.
posted by blag at 6:07 PM on January 19, 2006


Hey thanks for pointing that out! I dropped adrian an email to see if they came to any conclusions.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 6:19 PM on January 19, 2006


No problem. Just remember to use the search function next time.
posted by blag at 7:10 PM on January 19, 2006


sorry
posted by blag at 7:10 PM on January 19, 2006


How about we implement this feature: if you suggest a feature/rule and that feature/rule is not universally loved, you're banned?
posted by mullacc at 7:16 PM on January 19, 2006


But if it is universally loved, you win ONE MILLION DOLLARS!

(First mil from mullacc.)
posted by soyjoy at 7:39 PM on January 19, 2006


Adios, mullacc.
posted by Gyan at 9:03 PM on January 19, 2006


Try this, this, or this.
posted by sjvilla79 at 10:54 PM on January 19, 2006


/me rushes to make a post about spirit photography first.
posted by Eideteker at 1:44 AM on January 20, 2006


This is not a bad idea but it's nothing users can't do with the existing new-FPP-preview and the text editor of their choice.

Preview globally, save locally. Or something like that :)

Not a bad idea, though considering the effort required to create a per-user "draft" mode, I'd guess this is more of a "usertopia" category request and will play second fiddle to other features.
posted by scarabic at 2:12 AM on January 20, 2006


mullacc: "How about we implement this feature: if you suggest a feature/rule and that feature/rule is not universally loved, you're banned?"

If you suggest a feature that's just as easily implemented on the PEBCAK side, and MeFi Projects still looks like this, then maybe that feature can wait.
posted by Plutor at 2:58 AM on January 20, 2006


For HTML-enabled editing and/or idea storage, I use a "blind" (i.e. unpublishable) Blogger account.

Also, I don't think anybody has brought this up yet: can't we use an implementation of interrobang's idea for collaborative posting?
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 3:58 AM on January 20, 2006


We all have userpages here, right?
posted by dash_slot- at 4:16 AM on January 20, 2006


I actually have done this all the time on my userpage. I use the "blurb about you" spot where we're asked to tell the world about our nickname. It's not at all difficult, and it shows me exactly what the thing will look like if I were to put it on MeFi. If you go to my user page now, you'll see a graveyard of posts I made, posts I'm sort-of working on, and posts that never made the cut. Why not just do that, too, instead of looking for a pony?
posted by .kobayashi. at 7:40 AM on January 20, 2006


Because interrobang needs to feel loved.

Interrobang, I love you.
posted by rocketman at 11:12 AM on January 20, 2006


bang: I'm expecting those pics, man.
posted by mullacc at 11:35 AM on January 20, 2006


unneeded
posted by cellphone at 2:50 PM on January 20, 2006


Eideteker : "/me rushes to make a post about spirit photography first."

I'm going to wait until the post on his scratch pad is almost ready, and then steal it. Free well made posts! Woo!
posted by graventy at 10:35 PM on January 20, 2006


My posts are well-made?

Kidding aside, dear sir, you miss the gist of my jest! I can't believe my scathing satire of rushed posts, particularly NewsFilter, eluded you. Clearly, the quality of the site as a whole is going down the tubes because of this one occurrence.

At any rate, my history of photography class is OVER and I'm glad to be rid of it. Expect no photographical FPPs from me!
posted by Eideteker at 11:12 PM on January 20, 2006


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