Forum Spy for Early Use

Discussion in 'Site and Forum Feedback' started by arn, Jun 2, 2015.

  1. arn, Jun 2, 2015
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2015

    arn macrumors god

    arn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2001
    #1
    We have a version of spy up and running:
    http://forums.macrumors.com/spy/

    A few caveats:

    - Style / formatting could be better
    - Timestamps aren't in the right timezone
    - No way to exclude forums
    - No other nice features like followed threads are indicated
    - formatting is broken on iPhone

    It's pretty bare bones, but it works.

    The plan will be to clean this up, and also include the ability to block specific forums. Hopefully, we'll have a single solution so users can block specific forums in both New Posts and Spy.

    arn
     
  2. ardchoille50 macrumors 68020

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    Feb 6, 2014
    #2
    Thank you and your staff for all of the hard work, very much appreciated!
     
  3. arn thread starter macrumors god

    arn

    Staff Member

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    Apr 9, 2001
    #3
    and apparently it's broken in mobile :( Will deal with that later
     
  4. ardchoille50 macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2014
    #4
    It seems to be working on my iPad Air 2.
     
  5. Gav2k macrumors G3

    Gav2k

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    Jul 24, 2009
  6. MacDawg macrumors P6

    MacDawg

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2004
    Location:
    "Between the Hedges"
    #6
    Awesome and greatly appreciated @arn
    Hopefully the cleanup and ability to exclude Forums will not be too difficult
     
  7. Arran macrumors 68040

    Arran

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    Atlanta, USA
  8. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

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    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #8
    Thanks arn. The bare bones version is better then no version :D
     
  9. SandboxGeneral Moderator

    SandboxGeneral

    Staff Member

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    Location:
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    #9
    @maflynn I agree, bare bones Spy with basic functionality is better than no Spy at all. When at MacRumors, I live on the Spy to see what's happening and to find new and interesting threads to look at.
     
  10. sammich, Jun 3, 2015
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2015

    sammich macrumors 601

    sammich

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2006
    Location:
    Sarcasmville.
    #10
    Out of habit, I've opened Spy at least a couple dozen times since the new forums came out, always to be greeted by just the MR header.

    My thoughts:
    • I've been pining for a 'sub forum' field in Spy since Apple stopped just being a computer company (now I don't need to guess what product OP is talking about in the thread "This thing is smaller than I expected but it's oh so good" - See, now, that could be Watch, Macbook or...Community Discussions and a candidate for 'Funny Thread Titles')
    • the 'event' column is pretty useless and takes up valuable mobile screen space (see screens)
      • The event column had new post or thread - new thread was previously a bolded title, but we could instead use a tag "+" (see image)
    • We've lost the 'first post' button as well. I've always hated the UX of the tiny button - could we have a column on the end instead with a nice (can't figure out where to put it, though)
    • Loading indicator is hugely distracting and unnecessary
    • Slightly less top/bottom padding in the cells (see image)
    I had to change the CSS a little to achieve what was in the screenshot, to remove the first column, change the padding in the cells, moved the 'prefix' class up one pixel, vertically align to the top and changed the padding on the final cell so that it fills up the space fully.

    My $0.02.

    Edit: and thanks for not leaving Spy out of action longer.
     

    Attached Files:

  11. SandboxGeneral Moderator

    SandboxGeneral

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    #11
    Doesn't seem to work too well on the iPad mini. It loads a few posts and then stalls.
     
  12. ardchoille50 macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2014
    #12
    Try reloading the page. I have to do that now and then one iPad Air 2. But, I'm just happy we have something that works much of the time.
     
  13. SandboxGeneral Moderator

    SandboxGeneral

    Staff Member

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    Orbiting a G-type Main Sequence Star
    #13
    It seems to be intermittent for me. Sometimes when I load it right away it loads a few posts and then stalls. Other times, like for the last 10 minutes, it seemed to work appropriately, and then it finally stalled out with the black progress bar in the upper right.

    @arn A very nice feature of the spy, as it is right now, is the short preview of the post that is in there. I like that.
     
  14. ardchoille50 macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2014
    #14
    Yes, I'm seeing this as well. I'm guessing that it has to do with the amount of traffic that MR is having to process at any given time.
     
  15. SandboxGeneral Moderator

    SandboxGeneral

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    #15
    Another thing that I noticed a couple of times today, is that after I made a post and go over to the spy the post I just made does not appear in the list, however, other times it does appear so that is another intermittent problem apparently. That was on a Mac desktop and on a Windows desktop too.
     
  16. Moyank24 macrumors 601

    Moyank24

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2009
    Location:
    in a New York State of mind
    #16
    Thanks for this.

    Any Spy at this point is better than no spy!
     
  17. GGJstudios, Jun 4, 2015
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2015

    GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #17
    Thank you, arn! I felt disconnected without Spy! I have noticed one thing. Apparently, Spy is set to check for new posts every 5 seconds, which is fine. It does, however, flash this icon in the upper right corner every time it checks, which can be a bit distracting. Any way to disable this flashing?

    Screen Shot 2015-06-04 at 12.02.31 PM 1.PNG
     
  18. gr8tfly, Jun 4, 2015
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2015

    gr8tfly macrumors 603

    gr8tfly

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2006
    Location:
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    #18
    That's where I live too. I'm missing the old Spy. Is this a case of Spy vs Spy? :p)

    A few things:
    1. (mentioned before) Too big.
    2. I haven't noticed yet, but does it only bold the first post in a thread?
    3. Does it mark threads I'm subscribed to?
    4. Is it possible to have it load a set number of older posts, rather than accumulating them one at a time to fill page?
    5. Time is off. A post that was actually at 4:48pm (PDT) posted in Spy as 11:48 (2 hr west of Hawaii)

    MR Staff: Thanks for all the hard work! While change is hard, I am starting to get acclimated and are enjoying many new features.
     
  19. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #19
    I miss two features of the old Spy. One is that it would bold the name of the first post in a new thread, distinguishing those from posts in existing threads. Also, the number of posts in the thread was displayed, which was helpful.
     
  20. SandboxGeneral Moderator

    SandboxGeneral

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    Orbiting a G-type Main Sequence Star
    #20
    To add to that, another feature was a little button to the left of the thread title which would take you to the very first post of the thread. I miss that one too.
     
  21. arn thread starter macrumors god

    arn

    Staff Member

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    Apr 9, 2001
    #21
    New threads have no replies while new posts are existing threads
     
  22. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #22
    As far as I can tell, the new Forum Spy doesn't show the number of replies or distinguish between new or existing threads, so there's no way to tell if a thread is new or has 1 reply or 100 replies. The old Spy showed whether the post was the first or 3rd or 85th.
     
  23. arn thread starter macrumors god

    arn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2001
    #23
    It says "New Thread" in the left column if it's a first post. It says "New Post" if it's a reply to an existing thread.
     
  24. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #24
    Thank you! I hadn't been paying attention to that column, because it didn't look like it was working properly. The times are not accurate.
     
  25. Tilpots macrumors 601

    Tilpots

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    Apr 19, 2006
    Location:
    Carolina Beach, NC
    #25
    Excellent. Thank you to all who made it happen.
     

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