No green tick? July 25, 2010 1:18 AM   Subscribe

possible bug? Green "resolved" tick did not appear when I selected the option for my question on Ask Metafilter to be marked as resolved

This concerns this question: http://ask.metafilter.com/160469/Upgrading-a-Tiger-Macbook-to-Snow-Leopard

Everything seems to have gone as expected when I selected the option to mark the question as resolved except that that the green tick doesn't appear. I checked on my Mac Safari and Chrome browsers and on my iPhone Safari browser - none of them show the green tick and the option to mark the question resolved no longer appears for me. It's been about 1 hour to 90 minutes since I marked the question as resolved and still no green tick.

Hope this bug report is helpful - thanks for looking into it!!
posted by Bwithh to Bugs at 1:18 AM (25 comments total)

The green tick appears if you marked one of the answers as "best answer."
posted by birdherder at 1:33 AM on July 25, 2010


What birdherder said. When you mark the question as "resolved" it appears as a tag. The green "tick" (i.e. check mark) only indicates that one, or more, answers have been marked as "best."
posted by amyms at 1:37 AM on July 25, 2010


What was the best answer?
posted by unliteral at 2:16 AM on July 25, 2010


Green tick.
posted by verstegan at 5:52 AM on July 25, 2010 [1 favorite]


Q:Why are some peoples' answers in AskMe highlighted in their own box?

A: This is what it looks like when the original question asker highlights a best answer. Best answers are chosen by the original asker of the question. A question can have multiple best answers. The answers can be either the "right" answer or answers that the asker found useful in some way When an answer is marked as a best answer it's highlighted in its own box on the AskMe question page and the user with the best answer sees a check mark next to the question on their list of answers off their profile page.
posted by carsonb at 6:43 AM on July 25, 2010


There's a typo in that there answer. "[...] useful in some way When an [...]" Needs to have a period after "way." Way.
posted by cjorgensen at 7:26 AM on July 25, 2010


It occurs to me (without thinking about it too much) that the 'resolved' tag might ought to trigger a check mark on the question as well. Not sure if that's possible within the current db scheme, but it seems to be a good idea.
posted by carsonb at 7:32 AM on July 25, 2010


It occurs to me (without thinking about it too much) that the 'resolved' tag might ought to trigger a check mark on the question as well.

That's changing the function of a UI element after it's been in use for several years. I'm not sure if we need a way to visually show that a question has been resolved or not, but we probably shouldn't repurpose the green check mark in that way.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 7:35 AM on July 25, 2010 [1 favorite]


That makes sense. If nothing else, the favorites fiasco of late 2009 illustrated potential consequences of changing a much-loved UI element.

but we probably shouldn't repurpose the green check mark in that way.

Is it a repurposement (repurposening?) or just an expansion of purpose? Questions can have best answers without being resolved, I guess, but from a UI standpoint distinguishing the two seems redundant (and as evidenced by this MeTa, can be confusing). It's merely from the root meanings (opposed to the on-site meanings) of the terms we've associated with the two actions that they derive any distinction.

Am I making sense? Where's my coffee?
posted by carsonb at 7:49 AM on July 25, 2010


And oh, banking on the possibility that I am early-morning braining and totally wrong, maybe the answer to that FAQ could be clarified to make the difference between 'resolved' and 'best answer' more distinguished. (Gray up the sideburns a bit, twirl the moustache, monocle?)
posted by carsonb at 7:53 AM on July 25, 2010


Ah, ok that explains it then. I always thought the green tick meant a question had been resolved.
Thanks for the answers!
posted by Bwithh at 8:29 AM on July 25, 2010


There's a typo in that there answer.

Fixed!

Is it a repurposement (repurposening?) or just an expansion of purpose?

Same diff, in this case. It's a change from "the tick means there are marked best answers in this thread" to "the tick means there are marked best answers in this thread, except maybe when there aren't". That's a confusing change of established UI.

I mean, I hear what you're saying, there's nothing to say we could just declare that That's The Way It Is and see if people take to it, but I don't think it's a gimme of a change to make.
posted by cortex (staff) at 9:13 AM on July 25, 2010


It's a change from "the tick means there are marked best answers in this thread" to "the tick means there are marked best answers in this thread, except maybe when there aren't".

Well, if you frame it that way it's most certainly not a gimme. I see it as a change from "the tick means there are marked best answers in this thread" to "Thread resolved". Whether it's by consensus or one best/correct answer, the tick communicates resolved-ness on the front page of AskMe. Best answers still highlighted in-thread, still checked even, plus potentially very simply integrating two tab interfaces into one homepage view with very little semantic or visual change.
posted by carsonb at 9:57 AM on July 25, 2010


the tick communicates resolved-ness on the front page of AskMe.

Resolved-ness which, I put forth based on my experiences and good common sense, is a True Desire of the AskMe readership moreso than "there are marked best answers in this thread".
posted by carsonb at 9:59 AM on July 25, 2010


blugh, what about tabbed interfaces? Who gave me decaf!?
posted by carsonb at 10:00 AM on July 25, 2010


I see it as a change from "the tick means there are marked best answers in this thread" to "Thread resolved".

And I think cortex is saying that there are a sufficiiently large number of cases where those two states of being are not the same. In many cases best answers are "oh hey I'll try those" and resolved means "oh hey one of those suggestions actually WORKED." Agree that it is currently unclear somewhat and the FAQ could use some rejiggering, but really resolved and best answers are pretty different at least sometimes, to my mind.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 10:03 AM on July 25, 2010


And I think cortex is saying that there are a sufficiiently large number of cases where those two states of being are not the same.

I agree with your assessment of what cortex was pointing out, and I do not dispute his point. 'Resolved' and 'has best answers' are two very distinct things, and it's certainly tricky changing the meaning of a graphical symbol from one to the other. But I think that if the change makes sense it's less tricky and worth consideration. In my personal opinion, it is more useful to communicate resolved-ness on the front page of AskMe than to communicate 'has marked best answers', so changing the symbolic meaning of the tick mark should at least be discussed and considered.

Perhaps from the moderator's point of view it wouldn't be worth the hassle?
posted by carsonb at 10:13 AM on July 25, 2010


From my point of view, repurposing a UI symbol [on a site with very few symbols] from one meaning to another is a bad idea. However, if people are clamoring for this visual indicator, we can probably find a way to make resolvedness more apparent without messing with an existing symbol?
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 10:35 AM on July 25, 2010


I don't think best answers should be marked until the question is resolved. Otherwise, what's the point of best answers?
posted by Sys Rq at 11:12 AM on July 25, 2010


Let's see... a clamor on MetaTalk... but how?
posted by carsonb at 11:13 AM on July 25, 2010


May we clamour? (Not that I would.)
posted by Sys Rq at 11:14 AM on July 25, 2010


I don't think best answers should be marked until the question is resolved. Otherwise, what's the point of best answers?

If the best answer to a question is 'that can't be answered' then the question has it's best answer but no resolution. For example.
posted by carsonb at 11:15 AM on July 25, 2010


Another example:

Q: What's this growth on my goiter?
A: (chorus) Get thee to a doctor! [tick]
posted by carsonb at 11:19 AM on July 25, 2010


You can still highlight the things that were most helpful even if the problem is unresolved. Some questions have an inherent time delay where it's impossible to know immediately if something is going to work, like relationship issues, weight loss, personal improvement, what school should I go to, book/film recco etc. Some questions may not ever be answered because they're too obscure, but an answerer who exhaustively searches for an answer still might be marked best answer because they obviously went to a lot of effort. Sometimes the person is asking the wrong question and the reply that provides detailed information as to why a different idea might be more appropriate is often the best answer, even if it doesn't 'resolve' the question as stated. You can be satisfied by an answer even if your problem isn't solved.
posted by Rhomboid at 11:29 AM on July 25, 2010


I don't think best answers should be marked until the question is resolved. Otherwise, what's the point of best answers?

I've seen people use best answers to:

- put focus on some answerer's clarification/restatement of the question
- indicate that someone's answer while not definitive is heading in the right direction
- make note of a gamechanger or potential show-stopper observation from an answerer
- highlight what answers the asker is going to try for the moment with hopes of having a more proper resolution later

That's offhand, there are probably other examples out there as well. People use the things in a variety of ways, not all of which are directly analogous to "this situation has been resolved to the extent that I think is possible for the lifetime of the question", which is part of where I'm coming from in being hesitant about a potential conflation of the meaning of an established UI element.

Like Jess said, if getting an explicit recognition of "resolved" on the external view of a thread (beyond searching by tag or finding it in the Answered tab) is a desirable thing to do, probably what we'd aim for is some sort of discrete indicator independent of the Best Answer(s) checkmark. Could just be adding a "Resolved!" badge somewhere in the question presentation.
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:50 AM on July 25, 2010


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