back and next links to threads January 16, 2001 1:52 AM   Subscribe

About a billion years too late, I finally thought to add < Back and Next > links to threads, so you don't have to go back to the main page of metafilter to see the next thread.

I tested it in IE 5.01 and NN 6, but didn't in NN 4.7x (my copy seems to be toast since I installed NN 6). If anyone sees any problems, post a screenshot or description of what you're seeing wrong.
posted by mathowie (staff) to Feature Requests at 1:52 AM (17 comments total)

Nifty, Matt!
posted by prolific at 1:54 AM on January 16, 2001

but now posting doesn't work...
posted by lagado at 4:06 AM on January 16, 2001

I love it! But for some reason it's ridiculously wide (PC IE 5.01) on this thread for me. I checked on a few others and it's fine, so I'm wondering if it has to do with the post titles.

The "x members online" is a nice touch too, Matt.
posted by hijinx at 4:17 AM on January 16, 2001

It's very groovy.

But (I seem to do this to every feature you add, don't I? I'm sorry...) would it fit better underneath the comment box? Perhaps it's because I read MeFi with such a wide window (21" monitor @ 1600x1200, devoting just over a quarter of my screen space, usually) but the navigation bar dealy seems to throw off the "balance" of the page.

I resized the window to 640x480, and it looks alright. The border around the table still strikes me as a little odd though. <shrug> Just a thought.
posted by cCranium at 6:15 AM on January 16, 2001

I like the idea, but the implementation is a bit obtrusive. Perhaps use a smaller font-size and/or stack the titles of the last and previous items to make the navigation "table" narrower...(using IE 5.5, BTW)
posted by xiffix at 6:32 AM on January 16, 2001

I like it smaller like it is now. Looks much nicer.
posted by cCranium at 12:34 PM on January 16, 2001

I just tried moving it up to the top, and dropped the table highlighting it.

which is better:

exhibit A (above the comments)


exhibit B (below the comments)


The top placement isn't my favorite, as it tends to muck up the original thread starter, but I think it seems easier to browse and use at the top than at the bottom. Then again, the point is to read through a thread, then jump to the next one.

I suppose I could put them in both places, but it could be messy and muck up both places.

Below the comment box isn't a consideration, I tried it that way and it requires almost a full screen scroll from the last comment to the next and back links below.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 1:48 PM on January 16, 2001

It looks nice without the table. There's potentially a problem in differentiating it from comments and stuff, but I think "last post" is reasonably self-evident.

What if you were to put it, in the comments, underneath the little navigation bar at the top? The main page has the "3033 | You are logged in as cCranium / logout" (of course, that'll change for different people :-) line, could you put the navigation stuff up there? Perhaps with a linebreak between them? It would fit better in 640x480 then the current one does with a line break.

Perhaps a "top" link at the bottom to an anchor at the top of the page would make it easier?

If A and B are the best two options, my vote's for B.
posted by cCranium at 1:53 PM on January 16, 2001

Could we set where we want it as part of our preferences (like the typeface), or is that a difficult/time-consuming job?
posted by timothompson at 2:06 PM on January 16, 2001

good idea tim. if I get time, I can set it up tonight.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 2:37 PM on January 16, 2001

Ok, I know "the point is to read through a thread" but I wouldn't mind the Last/Next stuff to appear somewhere at the very top of the page. And I know that may cause some clutter in the top nav area, but it would help in going back or forward a few threads. Could this be a customized option?
posted by gluechunk at 3:06 PM on January 16, 2001

Maybe instead of "previous" and "next" we could have "newer" and "older"? I keep finding myself clicking the opposite of the one I want, for some reason.
posted by aaron at 10:29 PM on January 16, 2001

Amazing how quickly you forget how something looks when it's no longer in front of you. What I meant to say was the "next" and "previous" links seem to be one the wrong sides, and should be reversed. Though I have no clue why I feel this way.
posted by aaron at 10:34 PM on January 16, 2001

aaron: Do you start from the bottom of the front page and work your way up? That's the way I browser MeFi, and I get the same feeling, that I'm somehow backwards, and I think the links should go the otherway.

I think actually, it's because of the Reverse Chronological order, which it seems you said. "Previous" to me means the one before it on the list, but it actually means posted earlier.

Looks as though Matt's already changed the phrasing though, which made it a whole lot clearer, and effectively made me chipping in here pointless.

But then, that never stopped me before... :-)
posted by cCranium at 6:30 AM on January 17, 2001

cC: Yeah, unless there's a really juicy thread at the top of the page, I usually do a find on "new)" so it takes me down to the last topic with new posts, then work my way up from there. Seems to be the only way to keep up without letting unseen new responses drop off the page.
posted by aaron at 5:06 PM on January 17, 2001

The google bar highlight tool's really nifty for that (if it likes your browser, that is). You can shoot down to the bottom and scroll up quickly and the first instance of "new" is in bright yellow.

This leads to a thought: Matt, is there room in the interface for a "bottom of the page" anchor? Scrolling's pretty easy, but hey, if I can shave of half of a second before I get my fix, that's a whole half of a second I've shaved off!

(while talking about features, is the Metatalk layout different now, or am I going crazy again? The number of posts seems much clearer.)
posted by cCranium at 5:36 PM on January 17, 2001

Unfortunately, Google is bigoted against Macs, so I can't use the bar.
posted by aaron at 10:08 PM on January 17, 2001

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