You don't always get what you want, but if you ask sometimes, you just might get...what you want. February 27, 2008 10:05 AM   Subscribe

A different kind of call out: MeFi has a brand new pony.

Just last week I made a plea for some sort of thread marker/scroll tag. Others were interested. Then within a few days, miracle-man Plutor released a script that surpasses all expectations! Already he's updated it, and you can download it here. It's getting rave reviews, and team lowkey modified Plutor's script for a slightly different look if you prefer.

Major thanks and props to Plutor for a badass greasemonkey script that should benefit all Mefite .
posted by dawson to MetaFilter-Related at 10:05 AM (56 comments total) 10 users marked this as a favorite

erm. mefites even.
posted by dawson at 10:07 AM on February 27, 2008

Cool! I just installed it. Thanks for bringing it to my/our attention.
posted by Dr-Baa at 10:11 AM on February 27, 2008

Thumbs up.
posted by starman at 10:14 AM on February 27, 2008

Glad some people got that issue fixed. I just use "find" for my username with less fuss.
posted by agregoli at 10:20 AM on February 27, 2008

You comment in every thread you read?
posted by ODiV at 10:32 AM on February 27, 2008

Every time you read it?
posted by ODiV at 10:32 AM on February 27, 2008

Ok it convinced me to finally try greasemonkey (I know, I know). Looks good. More Ponies...

1) Wish I could set it to automatically be on the last comment shown before I refreshed ( a la fark).
2) Also dragging it down a long thread will be a pain.
3) Would be easier if I could pick it up anywhere on the tag.
posted by jeblis at 10:33 AM on February 27, 2008

You comment in every thread you read?

This comment is just to save my place.
posted by jeblis at 10:35 AM on February 27, 2008 [1 favorite]

Oh I see. I follows me down. Nice.

Can I get it in Cornflower Blue?
posted by jeblis at 10:38 AM on February 27, 2008

ODiV , hell no. This simply will/can take you back to where you left the thread. Say you were into a discusion, leave for a few hours, and there are lots of new comments. This will drop you off where at the last comment you read.
Obviously not something everyone wants (and thus optional) but has little to do with ones own participation in a thread.
posted by dawson at 10:40 AM on February 27, 2008

I like how it points down and you can grab it to reset it further up. Is it cross sit, multi-user, social, Web 2.0 Standards Compliant?
posted by jeblis at 10:47 AM on February 27, 2008

Now read agregoli's comment, dawson.
posted by Wolfdog at 10:47 AM on February 27, 2008

Cool. Thanks!
posted by rtha at 10:50 AM on February 27, 2008

I reiterate Plutor's godhood.
posted by Skorgu at 10:52 AM on February 27, 2008

I did Wolfdog. Democracy at play here. For me, and it appears, a few others, this works way better. Not to be snarky (and not to duck 'responsibility', I have to leave the computer for several hours), unless I'm missing something, you insatll this if you want it. If not, the original thread has myriad workarounds.
Some prefer to prime a hand pump, I like to just turn the tap on.
posted by dawson at 10:53 AM on February 27, 2008

I meant, read it, because that [i.e., agregoli] was who ODiV [to whom you replied to with "Oh hell no"] was replying to to [not you] [hence your reply was somewhat of a non sequitur].
posted by Wolfdog at 11:01 AM on February 27, 2008

Plutor, will you accept mailed homemade treats? Memail me an address and I'll think of something yummy.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 11:09 AM on February 27, 2008

Wolfdog, I apologize. I'm obviously not thinking clearly. You are correct and I am not. Thanks!
Ambrosia Voyeur, I, too, have make offers of sacrifice to Plutor, but so far, it seems I am not worthy ... (^_^)
really , really must go tutor now, anyway, this ain't about me. do carry on.
posted by dawson at 11:23 AM on February 27, 2008

of course Ambrosia is a 'hot chick' ( I mean that in the most chivalrous way, ma'am) and I'm and 'old beard' so I understand, Plutor, if you prefer a handmade treat to a Amazon item. I'm not jealous. At all!
See y'all at 9 pm EST.
posted by dawson at 11:29 AM on February 27, 2008

This can all work out very tidily and happily if someone sends me a homemade treat and, well, that's the main thing, really, you can work the rest of the arrangement out if it seems important.
posted by Wolfdog at 11:34 AM on February 27, 2008 [1 favorite]

Brilliant work.

I thought it was a bit distracting, though, and after a bit of Googling managed to work out how to turn the marker thingy into a very tiny little 6px x 4px light grey oblong. (Turns out you can replace it with pancakes, pissing elephants, whatever. - just run an image through this data url generator and paste the gobbledegook it gives you over the two chunks of gobbledegook at the bottom of the script that start with "data:image".)

Don't think I broke the script while changing it, so if anyone who uses the plain theme (doubt it'd be visible against the blue/green/grey) wants a version they'll barely notice, here it is.

(Hope it's okay to do that, Plutor.)
posted by jack_mo at 12:07 PM on February 27, 2008

jack_mo Thanks I like it more subtle.
posted by jeblis at 12:13 PM on February 27, 2008


Joking. Please change and modify. I generally release everything I make (that's not for-work) under the BSD license, which, for the Open Source unaware, means that you can do whatever you want with it for whatever purpose you want, including sell it for profit (good luck with that). I didn't explicitly put that in this script, but you can consider it an implicit license.

I very much appreciate offers of homebaked goodies and Amazon whatnots, but in all honesty, a MetaTalk shrine to my glory is all I really ever wanted. Really.
posted by Plutor at 12:32 PM on February 27, 2008

Plutor, would you mind terribly pulling the image dimensions out as variables to make custom images a little easier? I've done it with your latest update here. I guess it would make sense to pull out the grabber size as well. Or, you know, if you'd rather not, feel free to tell me to piss off.

And, again, this is totally fucking rad. Thanks a bunch.
posted by team lowkey at 12:46 PM on February 27, 2008

If someone were to—hypothetically—start a collection to—hypothetically—buy me, say, a Smart Fortwo, or a Wii, or a small rocketship, I wouldn't make the delivery person return it.
posted by Plutor at 12:46 PM on February 27, 2008

*bows before the shrine to Plutor, lights candle*
posted by dg at 12:55 PM on February 27, 2008

team lowkey: "Plutor, would you mind terribly [...]"

I've got a todo list for the next iteration accumulating already, and this (or perhaps mefiquote-esque configurability) is at the top, as is making the dragging-handle bigger.
posted by Plutor at 1:04 PM on February 27, 2008

posted by team lowkey at 1:09 PM on February 27, 2008

One thing that I noticed is that if a answer is marked "Best Answer" then it won't stop on that comment it will go to the one right before it. Not really a big problem. And thank you very much for making this, I was using dog tags but this is much better to use.
posted by lilkeith07 at 1:26 PM on February 27, 2008

It doesn't look like the new comment count works on the front page of Ask. I'm guessing it's because it says "answers" instead of "comments".
posted by team lowkey at 2:15 PM on February 27, 2008

Best part of this pony: When someone links to a #COMMENT, and I click it, and the new page invariably starts at some seemingly arbitrary point in the middle of an apparently random comment (what's up with that?), the correct comment now has a pretty little arrow next to it.
posted by Sys Rq at 2:18 PM on February 27, 2008

the new page invariably starts at some seemingly arbitrary point in the middle of an apparently random comment (what's up with that?).

Are you using an old version of the mefi comment divider greasemonkey script? I think the newer version fixed that.
posted by juv3nal at 2:27 PM on February 27, 2008

It's probably something like that. I'll just update 'em all.
posted by Sys Rq at 2:30 PM on February 27, 2008

Damn you Plutor! shakes fist
posted by Deathalicious at 2:46 PM on February 27, 2008

Now look what you've done! This off-label use will void our MeFi warranty! We're DOOOOOMED!

Spiffy! Kudos again, Plutor.
posted by hangashore at 3:20 PM on February 27, 2008

Anyone got a screenshot or two of what this looks like in practice? I don't have greasemonkey installed (seems to cause stability issues in Firefox for me).
posted by mathowie (staff) at 4:09 PM on February 27, 2008

yo here be she
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 4:25 PM on February 27, 2008

I've changed the image, so this isn't the official look, but close to it. Plutor's is larger with a red square. Here's the marker, and here's the jumper. The marker follows you down the page as you scroll, marking how far you've read. The jumper hangs at the bottom of the page if you're higher in the thread than your mark. Clicking on the jumper will pop you to the marker, and both can be dragged next to a comment to mark your spot.
posted by team lowkey at 4:34 PM on February 27, 2008

I love this! For some reason, whenever I refresh Firefox 2.0 in a long, active thread (here or at other blogs), the page never autoscrolls to show the first new comment, but scrolls down to some point well below the first new comment. IE 6, in contrast, always scrolled to the first new comment.

But at least here, I can look for the lovely little pointer -- thanks!
posted by maudlin at 5:25 PM on February 27, 2008

/hugs plutor a LOT
posted by SassHat at 5:43 PM on February 27, 2008

whoah, when did we get the ability to subscribe to comments in a thread? crazi..HEY GET OFF MY DAISIES YOU ROTTEN LITTLE WHIPPERSNAPPERS!!!!
posted by onalark at 5:51 PM on February 27, 2008

Wow, Plutor, I just checked out the list of scripts you've shared with us; I hadn't realised how many of the scripts I'm running came from you. Thank you for all the goodness you've given us!!
posted by mosessis at 7:18 PM on February 27, 2008

Oh, man! Thanks, thanks, thanks! And thank you, team lowkey, too!
posted by taz at 10:11 PM on February 27, 2008

In return for all of the thanks and hugs and wows, updates!

* WAY better, alpha-layer-enhanced semi-transparent (ooh, subsite-themed) default image
* Fixed counters on AskMe (this is what happens when end-users are my QA)
* Fixed marker on best answers in AskMe
* Made it easier to hack in new images (I wanted to make it runtime-configurable, but I don't think there's a way to take a local image and read it in with pure JavaScript).
* Infinitely bigger jumper/marker handle, even on the jumper, which honestly worked better than I'd anticipated.
* How come no one noticed the marker would creep up the page by one comment each time the page was loaded?
* Focusing the comment box tags the last comment (I noticed that the tag couldn't follow me to the last comment on my 1200-pixel-tall screen at work.)
posted by Plutor at 1:52 AM on February 28, 2008

Available at the same place as before.

Yes, I woke up at 3:30 AM and couldn't fall back asleep so I got up and coded. What of it?
posted by Plutor at 1:57 AM on February 28, 2008

This is just brill, Plutor. Thanks again for all the work you're putting in.

(Did I just say brill? 1980s playground slang memoryspasm!)
posted by jack_mo at 4:50 AM on February 28, 2008

The new marker is great. Thanks for making it easier to customize the image, and for making it completely unnecessary to do so.

Would it be possible to have it tag the last comment if you scroll to the end of the page? I'm also on a 1200px, and clicking the comment box is definite improvement over manually dragging the marker, but automatic is better still. Because I'm just. that. lazy.
posted by team lowkey at 9:55 AM on February 28, 2008

Oh, who am I kidding. I can't help but tinker. The partial transparency thing is brilliant. I've made the marker just a little shorter, and with a little whitespace on the back for grabbing. The old yellow one moved here, if anybody cares.
posted by team lowkey at 12:20 PM on February 28, 2008

I really like the idea of this, but I'm not quite ready to switch to FF yet. Is it terribly hard to make it compatible with Opera also? I expect it may be a pain, so no worries, it just never hurts to ask. (Some of the decisions by the OperaDevs frankly boggle me in their shortsightedness.)
posted by a_green_man at 3:21 PM on February 28, 2008

For anyone who's still paying attention, there are a couple of minor bugfixes up today, including finding a really boneheaded mistake I made that was making the jumper sometimes take its sweet time reappearing.

According to this, Opera should be able to natively use "most" Greasemonkey scripts. I don't have the big-O installed (besides on my cell phone), so I can't test it out right now. I have a strong feeling that a few things won't work (it might not remember the marked comment location between loads, the jumper fading-in might not work, the marker probably won't go translucent while you're moving it, etc). Someone give it a whirl and let me know. If it seems seriously deficient or malfunctional, I'll take the plunge.
posted by Plutor at 9:08 AM on March 3, 2008

Well, I did try before I posted (both yours/Plutor's and team lowkey's). Neither one did anything for me on Opera 9.25 and while I have gotten other GM scripts to work, I can't claim to know why they do or don't. Usually if I don't see "opera compatible" on the download page I just skip it, but this looked like it was worth a try. Maybe someone else will have some insight before this thread is completely buried.
posted by a_green_man at 1:15 PM on March 3, 2008

For you, a_green_man, MetaFilter Scroll Tag now supports Opera (8+, I think). Opera users will also need to install this script that emulates the Greasemonkey builtin functions I'm using.
posted by Plutor at 7:21 AM on March 4, 2008

Hey, has anyone else who has installed this script (which I still love) noticed that the "x new" link below a FPP now opens in a new tab, while the "x comments" link opens in the same tab, as usual? I have my profile set to open links in a new window, which up until now meant that all external links opened in a new FF tab and a few MeFi links opened in a new tab under some circumstances. This is new behaviour for this link.

I don't know if I'm the only one seeing this, or if this is even related to this script, but I wanted to check here before I made a MeTa FPP about it as this change seemed to happen about the time I installed this. Bug? Feature? Illusory correlation? Formication?
posted by maudlin at 7:08 AM on March 5, 2008

You're not hallucinating, you're completely right. It's this script doing it. I've just updated it with a fix.
posted by Plutor at 8:02 AM on March 5, 2008

You kick serious ass, Plutor. The fix works. Thanks!

Although the news that I'm not hallucinating means this is going to be a much more boring week than I had expected. I hate Wednesdays.
posted by maudlin at 8:10 AM on March 5, 2008

I just discovered that has rss feeds for tons of things, like all comments on all of my scripts. They also have feeds for individual scripts, which might be more useful for people who aren't me. Even better, if you create a user account, you can favorite scripts and then get an rss feed of all comments on all of your favorited scripts. A better way to keep up to date with updates.
posted by Plutor at 6:05 AM on March 12, 2008

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