mobile.MeFi.com January 24, 2008 5:35 PM   Subscribe

Announcing: mobile.metafilter.com
It's a new version of the sites designed for the iPhone/iPod Touch. Try it out on the device, songs from MeFi Music even play in the device (works best on wifi of course). A short video if it in action is inside.

posted by mathowie to Feature Requests at 5:35 PM (92 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

I'm in love.
posted by blue_beetle at 5:38 PM on January 24, 2008


Yay yay yay!
posted by eyeballkid at 5:38 PM on January 24, 2008


Oh, good. Now we can be unproductive on the road, as well as at the desk.
posted by jbickers at 5:39 PM on January 24, 2008


That is the loudest typing and mouse-clicking I have ever heard. What the hell?
posted by ND¢ at 5:41 PM on January 24, 2008


Tested it on an iPhone, seemed to have some superfluous whitespace below the links on the landing page. Other than that, I love it.
posted by churl at 5:42 PM on January 24, 2008


YAYYYY!!!!!! My daughter may never again get to use the iPod Touch I bought her.
posted by The Deej at 5:43 PM on January 24, 2008


But how do I post?
posted by blue_beetle at 5:45 PM on January 24, 2008


On further review, I retract my "superfluous whitespace" comment. It renders as expected -- that is, only drawing enough whitespace below the main links so that you can scroll the address bar off the top if you want to.

(It crashes Safari 2.0.4 on this Mac, though).
posted by churl at 5:48 PM on January 24, 2008


Slick interface but doesn't work with PocketIE under Windows Mobile 6 (tried it with a Sprint Mogul).

Basically, I can't click the links.

Ironically, *real* Metafilter is just fine if you turn on the 'Desktop' view (read: large virtual screenspace you scroll around.
posted by Ryvar at 5:52 PM on January 24, 2008 [1 favorite]


Very nice, already webclipped. But, am I dense, or is there no obvious way to login & post? (The answer may very well be "both.")
posted by BrotherFeldspar at 5:59 PM on January 24, 2008


No posting yet, and we need to add Jobs. Followup features would be new headers for each subsite so you can see the Ask MeFi pages have green headers, etc.

So far it's just a couple hours of hacking a new front page and comment page template and wrapping it all in the iUI framework.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 6:03 PM on January 24, 2008 [1 favorite]


What, no BlackBerry support?
posted by mr_crash_davis at 6:06 PM on January 24, 2008 [1 favorite]


Awesome. Thank you - I love my new pony!
posted by rtha at 6:10 PM on January 24, 2008


Awesome for a quick check of what's going on, even if there doesn't seem to be a way to login and post (or I'm just dense too). And so fast!! But no pretty webclippy icon?
posted by gemmy at 6:13 PM on January 24, 2008


Totally awesome; I love browsing MF on the iPhone and this makes it twice as nice. Way to go Matt!
posted by porn in the woods at 6:17 PM on January 24, 2008


Thank you for mercifully stopping that song before I started singing.
posted by chococat at 6:22 PM on January 24, 2008


That's pretty sweet, Matt. It makes Mefi Music shine.
posted by Dave Faris at 6:25 PM on January 24, 2008


I added the MeFi icon from the main site to the mobile one, so if you make a webclip of it, it'll grab the image.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 6:33 PM on January 24, 2008


Just when I thought I'd gotten over iPhone lust. Damn.
posted by doctor_negative at 6:37 PM on January 24, 2008


That is the loudest typing and mouse-clicking I have ever heard. What the hell?

Wow, seriously. Matt, don't leave your iPhone in that person's hands... they'll STRONGBAD SMASH through the touch-screen.
posted by CKmtl at 6:38 PM on January 24, 2008


It was pb working in my office. It's kind of loud having a hardwood floor in a small room, so it sounds worse than it is.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 6:44 PM on January 24, 2008


Don't make pb angry. You wouldn't like him when he's angry.
posted by ND¢ at 6:48 PM on January 24, 2008 [1 favorite]


Re: BlackBerry: Been playing with this in Opera on my Blackberry 8830, and save for some random 'http:/' versus 'http://' errors here and there, it seems to be working fine ...
posted by bhance at 6:53 PM on January 24, 2008


This is great, and I really like the ability to play the songs available on MeMu. However, it appears as though I cannot post a comment/response using mobile.mefi. Is this common to all mobile devices accessing the site this way? Will comment-posting be a feature available in the future?

Also, something about this horse having cavities and me being a spoiled and ungrateful child.
posted by numinous at 6:55 PM on January 24, 2008 [1 favorite]


Sweet! Good job!
posted by spilon at 6:57 PM on January 24, 2008


AWESOME. Love it.

(Can it please also have Recent Activity?)
posted by bonaldi at 6:57 PM on January 24, 2008


Cool! I'm forwarding on to my Dad. He's a new iPhone user, and new Mefite as well! (I have to forward, because without my prodding, he won't notice. Hi Dad!)
posted by ObscureReferenceMan at 7:12 PM on January 24, 2008


WANT.

Dammit, now I have to buy an iPod touch just so I can use this.
posted by Phire at 7:13 PM on January 24, 2008


Yea, like Tyvar, the links don't work on WM5 (though, I do find the page navigation maddening when under desktop view. One column all the way).
/cries
Regular MeFi does load, but from the one page I can load, it sure would be nice and a lot faster if it worked on WM...
posted by jmd82 at 7:29 PM on January 24, 2008


Testing it on my LG Viewty, using whatever crappo browser it has installed (despite a "cookies on/off" option it only ever saves my logged in status on sites 10% of the time): The main MeFi page looks as it does on the video, and the post links work, but when I click the Ask, Projects, etc links at the top the header changes but it keeps displaying the MeFi front page.
posted by EndsOfInvention at 7:35 PM on January 24, 2008


I noticed this earlier today and was like, "What the...AWESOME!"
posted by iamkimiam at 7:35 PM on January 24, 2008


I love the beautiful new icon for the home screen too!
posted by iamkimiam at 7:38 PM on January 24, 2008


Oops, I meant Ryvar.

FWIW, if I navigate directly to a MeFi mobile post from WM and type in the post's URL (which I retrieved by navigating mobile.metafilter.com from my dekptop- ie http://mobile.metafilter.com/comments.mefi?link_id=81900&sitetype_id=3#_page), I can properly see the mobile version of the post on my WM phone.
posted by jmd82 at 7:48 PM on January 24, 2008


Actually, what might be good while the posting thing is being worked on is a link to the real thread from the bottom of the mobile thread.
posted by bonaldi at 7:53 PM on January 24, 2008


Can you please make the URL for "mobile.metafilter.com" in the post heading a live link so that we can click on it instead of typing it into our phones? Thanks!
posted by iamkimiam at 8:12 PM on January 24, 2008


Assuming you're not going to fix whatever makes the Ask/Projects/etc links not work on my Viewty, is there a URL to get straight to the mobile version of Ask? e.g. mobile.metafilter.com/ask or something...
posted by EndsOfInvention at 8:13 PM on January 24, 2008


Nope, there's no direct URLs unfortunately, they're all in a iPhone javascript wrapper. I suppose I should have called it iphone.metafilter.com instead, because that's all it is designed to work in at the moment.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 9:02 PM on January 24, 2008


Because I really am that much of a dork, I was just thinking yesterday about how cool it would be if Mefi had an iPhone version. And here it is! Yay!

Thank you for being awesome!
posted by streetdreams at 9:09 PM on January 24, 2008


You should really let that cougar out of the cage more often.
posted by cowbellemoo at 9:19 PM on January 24, 2008


Oh. It was just pb. Wait. On second thought ... I'm going to stand by my original statement.
posted by cowbellemoo at 9:21 PM on January 24, 2008


If I would have known matt was filming I would have used my inside typing.
posted by pb (staff) at 9:30 PM on January 24, 2008 [1 favorite]


Is this the kind of thing you'd have to have an iPhone to get?
posted by Astro Zombie at 9:33 PM on January 24, 2008


This is awesome! Thanks so much, guys. But now what will I do with my second home screen lovingly filled with each shiny MF icon? Won't someone think of the icons?
posted by ulotrichous at 9:35 PM on January 24, 2008


Really cool, thanks.

If login/post/etc looks like a pain, could we simply get a link at the bottom of the threads that will drop us on the "real" site in that thread? Frankly you could just add that and call it done.

(although, yeah, I am jonesing for a Recent Activity button in the mobile version)

Anyway, thanks for doing this.
posted by tkolar at 9:38 PM on January 24, 2008


Ooooo, great idea, tkolar. I am all for that suggestion! This would also solve the Posting ProblemTM.
posted by numinous at 10:21 PM on January 24, 2008


Matt; Any chance that this could be made to work on, say, Mobile Internet Explorer to support things like the Palm Treo 750 etc? Cause that would be sweet.
posted by Effigy2000 at 10:52 PM on January 24, 2008


Looks like it might even work in other devices!

(Other devices do not have the ability to cure cancer, of course)
posted by Artw at 2:03 AM on January 25, 2008


Please do not add Blackberry support. My wife spends enough time on her Blackberry as it is.

However, if you will be so kind as to send me an iPhone, I will happily, er, test it for you.
posted by davejay at 2:21 AM on January 25, 2008 [2 favorites]


Matt; Any chance that this could be made to work on, say, Mobile Internet Explorer to support things like the Palm Treo 750 etc? Cause that would be sweet.

Looks as if it could work fine in IE on Palm Treo 500v as well. Just tried it and it looks much better to read than the usual rendering of the page (Can't see comments on posts though).

Cool, yet another excuse to chew up expensive data on my mobile!
posted by ClanvidHorse at 2:37 AM on January 25, 2008


Very nice, but I can't follow links in posts right now - just get a little animated "sparkle" over the link text when I try to click them. This is on an iPhone/1.1.3.
posted by teleskiving at 3:06 AM on January 25, 2008


Where's Skylar?
posted by Deathalicious at 4:04 AM on January 25, 2008


When Gmail turned on IMAP and my friends with iPhones could finally access it in a way that wasn't web-based, I told them I'd been using the Java client for a year.

When Steve Jobs stood on stage last week and told my friends with iPhones that they could finally send an SMS to more than one person at a time, I told him I'd been doing it in 2003.

When Matt made a mobile version of MeFi specially for iPhones...

On the other hand, check out the slick animation when you tilt it to landscape mode. WOW!
posted by Plutor at 4:50 AM on January 25, 2008


Thank you for mercifully stopping that song before I started singing.

Seconded.





Just kidding, chococat, just kidding!
posted by flapjax at midnite at 4:54 AM on January 25, 2008


This is a shit load of better look on my cheapskate plan Nokia 6300 than metafilter.com, so thanks mathowie.
posted by tellurian at 4:58 AM on January 25, 2008


When Matt made a mobile version of MeFi specially for iPhones, I told Plutor I was commenting in threads with my Palm VII back in 2002. Granted, the result wasn't as gorgeous as what we have now, but you have to remember, back in those days, RAM was exotic and expense, while portable displays were greyscale. You kids today like to act as if everything grows on trees.
posted by Smart Dalek at 5:11 AM on January 25, 2008


Just now I was reading a thread and not being able to see the number of favorites I found myself evaluating comments on their own merits. Can this be fixed?
posted by cillit bang at 5:11 AM on January 25, 2008 [4 favorites]


I hope if it's going to be "mobile.metafilter" and not "appleidevice.metafilter" that you'll support other platforms. I'm happy to assist where possible.

Music works well on my Treo 680 with Kinoma. Bandwidth is an issue while streaming, but it handles downloading smartly. There are no internal links (I can't click on mathowie's name and go to his profile).

I understand youtube upgraded their mobile site recently. Might be worth looking in to with regards to handling youtube FPPs and embedded video like in this post.
posted by Eideteker at 5:55 AM on January 25, 2008


This is great. I can't wait to be able to post and seeing the comments/new comments would be cool.

As far as posting in the iPhone gui, I think that the Ultralingua translator does a decent job, but could be improved. However, it is probably something Apple will need to fix on its end to be less clunky.
posted by birdherder at 6:57 AM on January 25, 2008


Is this the thread where you announce that you'll send an iphone to all active members so they can ride this new pony?
posted by Terminal Verbosity at 7:17 AM on January 25, 2008


It's a treat to get a little Apple support. Thanks!
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 7:38 AM on January 25, 2008


Works great on a T-Mobile t-zones branded Samsung. Which is really weird because nothing works well on t-zones.

I was, quite frankly, shocked when it came up as nicely as it did.
posted by quin at 8:05 AM on January 25, 2008


Wow. This kinda makes me want to write a MeFi application for the iPhone when I get my hands on the SDK.

Great work, guys. Nice 1.0 (or beta, or whatever you want to call it). :-D
posted by Mikey-San at 8:33 AM on January 25, 2008


The site always looked fine on my Palm Centro and Treos w. Blazer. I used fast loading.
posted by k8t at 9:19 AM on January 25, 2008


This is awesome!!
posted by mothershock at 10:05 AM on January 25, 2008


Actually, this works wonderfully on my Blackberry 8700. Thanks, matt.
posted by Pastabagel at 10:13 AM on January 25, 2008


All I get is a large button saying Welcome on Blazer on my Treo 650 (yes I know I should upgrade). I would love a low bandwith mobile version that works across a range of phone browsers. Perhaps renaming this to iphone.metafilter.com would be the best thing until you can make it cross-platform.
posted by chrispy at 10:35 AM on January 25, 2008


Nthing "Recent Activity", even above Posting. (And before Login, even, since it can just read the login cookie from the normal site - no-one ever logs out, do they?)
posted by nicwolff at 11:33 AM on January 25, 2008


Why come there are no "older" and "newer" links? Huh?
posted by popechunk at 1:06 PM on January 25, 2008


I tried uploadating the Google through my Apple Phone but I think I clogged the intertube, should I reboot my harddrive or does my USB socket need to bootsectored?
posted by blue_beetle at 1:10 PM on January 25, 2008


VERY cool. This is the first thing I've seen that interoperates with the iPhone's sideways scroll interface. Didn't even know that was possible!

May I suggest a login link at the bottom of each thread?
posted by scarabic at 2:13 PM on January 25, 2008


God damn it, you people are making it hard for me to scoff at iPhones.

*scoffs*
posted by middleclasstool at 3:26 PM on January 25, 2008


I tried to access mobile.metafilter.com from my iPhone a few weeks ago and it didn't work.

Thanks for fixing that for me.
posted by ikkyu2 at 9:57 PM on January 25, 2008


Although I notice I can't post a snarky comment, or any other kind of comment, on mobile.metafilter.com. Can't even log in. Is that intentional?
posted by ikkyu2 at 10:01 PM on January 25, 2008


Opera 8.65:
The mobile.metafilter.com works on Opera 8.65 on Windows Mobile 6 on my Sprint Mogul (HTC Hermes/Titan 100) in both "Fit to Screen" (very plain, looks like it was designed for lynx) and "Desktop" (looks like the screen in the above video, with the big fonts). However, in the Desktop mode, it seems to be picking up a bunch of Apple-specific code that borks it. I can see the big links, and when I click on them I get little colour changes, white to blue or something, but nothing changes on the screen. The original www.metafilter.com works fine with Opera in both modes, and has more familiar colours, so I think I'll stick with that.

However, when I click on "MeFi Music" on the phone, it just seems to jump down a few lines. But when I go to the "music.metafilter.com" bookmark, it opens fine. I use a separate Flash player and uninstalled Flash from the browser so I see the "Get Flash to see the track player". I can click the "download mp" option, and the mp3s don't seem to stream but instead the browser downloads the entire song over the 3G before playing. Takes around a minute to download, though, which kind of blows, and would definitely be painful with a slow network. Tried putting the mp URLs into some of the streaming players with no luck. Also, this mp3 download link is buried within the comment itself, and not on the main screen, which requires an extra click for each song. You might think about adding it explicitly to the main screen for each post, say if the detection routine says no Flash is present.

Opera 4 Mini:
With Opera Mini 4 (the Java zoomy browser) on the Mogul with the INTENT MIDLet manager, mobile.metafilter.com displays pretty much exactly like the video. Even does the sideways scroll wipe during page changes (maybe that's an Opera feature?). Sadly though, clicking on any of the mobile.metafilter.com links makes a faster, smoother click button fill-in animation than Opera Mobile but then times out saying the URL is not responding. Again, the original www.metafilter.com works fine with Opera Mini!
posted by meehawl at 11:59 PM on January 25, 2008


I wish I had an iPod. Or an iPhone.

You guys have fun!
posted by hadjiboy at 3:50 AM on January 26, 2008


Any reason y'all went with the "screen" CSS media type instead of "handheld"? Also, why the subdomain; shouldn't the device detect and load the correct stylesheet if the media type is defined? I'm not being nitpicky, I'd just like to know for some insight into your decision-making process, since I respect the work you do.
posted by sciurus at 6:19 AM on January 26, 2008


I was going to ask the same thing as sciurus. Do such CSS tricks not work for the iPhone?
posted by Count Ziggurat at 6:39 AM on January 26, 2008


Am I the only MeFite with a Sidekick? Well, in any case, all I get out of this is "Welcome" and five links that take me nowhere -- they point at #'s on the rest of the page, which never loaded to begin with and thus don't take well to being pointed to.

Then again, normal metafilter displays just fine on the SK browser. Why am I complaining?
posted by lizzicide at 8:45 AM on January 26, 2008


Um. This is truly awesome. Thanks, Matt, you made it to my home screen.
posted by lackutrol at 9:34 AM on January 26, 2008


I am trying really, really hard to wait for my Sprint contract to expire. This does not help.
posted by odinsdream at 12:16 PM on January 26, 2008


I don't think I'd want to automatically be bounced to the mobile platform. It will probably never duplicate all the functionality of the web version, which does load okay on my mobile device. The main requirement of a mobile version is that it be faster. Read-only for now is interesting... in the interest of keeping the mobile version light and no huge maintenance chore, perhaps it should stay this way and simply link to the web version for login & post?
posted by scarabic at 12:16 PM on January 26, 2008


Any reason y'all went with the "screen" CSS media type instead of "handheld"? Also, why the subdomain; shouldn't the device detect and load the correct stylesheet if the media type is defined? I'm not being nitpicky, I'd just like to know for some insight into your decision-making process, since I respect the work you do.

Before we did anything automatic, we wanted to make sure it worked first and build it out a bit. I think the optimum way to do it eventually is that if you have an iPhone, on your first visit, you'd see this mobile version, but there'd be a prominent link in the footer to switch to the full site. If you switched, we'd cookie you so you'd never see the mobile site by default again. This way, people can choose to use either the streamlined version or the real version and they only have to select once (and they could bookmark both if they wanted to use both).

For now though, I think it'll still be this weird half-implemented thing we toy around with, either adding more features to make it a full-fledged mirror of the main site, or adding in links to the real site if you want more functionality. I just kinda liked it and liked that we built it in a day and wanted to share it with other iPod/iPhone users that might get a kick out of it.

1-2 people a week have been asking for an iPhone version of MeFi since the iPhone came out -- probably since Digg launched one two days after the phone came out and lots of other big sites have special versions for the device.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 2:15 PM on January 26, 2008


fyi the regular version of the site works just fine on the PSP (which is a relief, as my laptop is in the shop).
posted by jtron at 2:46 PM on January 26, 2008


not related to this, but is it possible there might not be a metatalk post today? 6 hours to go!
posted by empath at 3:04 PM on January 26, 2008


Just to add to the burgeoning request list:
- Add the "Older posts" link, in case you're following a thread that's fallen off the (shortened) front page
- Paging for long threads, to reduce load times, with the ability to leap to the last page.
That said, nice, and thank you.
posted by George_Spiggott at 3:42 PM on January 26, 2008


Dude.
posted by tkolar at 3:42 PM on January 26, 2008


If I type in the URL on my phone (Blackberry Pearl) in either the pre-installed browser or OperaMini, I get bounced to the normal metafilter site. However, I have no problem with that because I have EVDO and my internets are fast.

I swear this is all a conspiracy by the Apple people to make us anti-(and non-)Apple people angry/jealous/depressed/etc. Mathowie, how much is Jobs paying you?!
posted by nursegracer at 3:52 PM on January 26, 2008


empath wrote...
not related to this, but is it possible there might not be a metatalk post today? 6 hours to go!

Apparently the thought of that drove Matt to madness.
posted by tkolar at 4:49 PM on January 26, 2008


I had been reading Metafilter on my iPod Touch for half an hour before happily finding this post - yay! One request, if you keep working on it: could it be possible to see the number of comments a post has in the streamlined version? I really use that feature and miss it when I read the site via rss.
posted by TochterAusElysium at 6:13 PM on January 26, 2008


Hey, just wanted to report success on my Helio Ocean phone running Opera Mini. Very speedy. I like it. I've only tested navigation down to the comment level, not music or outbound links.
posted by sdodd at 9:35 PM on January 27, 2008


VERY cool. This is the first thing I've seen that interoperates with the iPhone's sideways scroll interface. Didn't even know that was possible!

It's not. This is a custom JavaScript UI that attempts to mimic the (more fluid) iPhone column view interface.
posted by Mikey-San at 5:54 PM on January 28, 2008


Hnh. I can't get mobile.metafilter.com to work at all on my Cingular 3125. Windows Mobile 5, using the built-in IE browser.

I get a white page that has a list of the various sites with what look like bullets to the right: I can select a site, but clicking on it does nothing but reload the landing page. Looks like clicking on "Metafilter" tries to load http://mobile.metafilter.com/#metafilter.
posted by scrump at 3:17 PM on February 8, 2008 [1 favorite]


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