Finally the BIG upgrade is here. I’ve spent last 3 weeks researching, brainstorming, designing and coding. By that I don’t mean 3 weeks of fulltime job of course, because as you know this is not supposed to be my fulltime job. But you get the idea.
I knew that the addition of the Pulse was step in the right direction. It enables everybody to keep track with all new postings that are spread across many site sections like projects, blogs, forums etc. But I also knew that as our site grows it would be more and more difficult to track the pulse in the old format. There were two major flaws:
- it listed comments and replies as the separate activities (rows in the table)
- there was no way to see which activities were new to you and which ones you had already read
In summary, with the increasing amount of activities the list was quickly “polluted” by the comments and replies and it was very hard to scan down through the list to find the ones new to you.
I’ve tried to address these two drawbacks in this Pulse upgrade. You will need some time to get used to it but then it should really help you to stay in the loop. Each pulse listing row now corresponds to one of the main activities – project, blog entry, forum topic, workshop or jock. Rows start with small icon to indicate the activity type:
And now about the best part. LumberJocks site now automatically tracks your readership of any post. And next time you go to the Pulse page it will show you how many (if any) new comments or replies have been posted on that exact post. And it doesn’t matter whether you’re browsing LJ on one, two or dozens computers. Readership data are binded to your profile (only registered members may experience this feature).
Here is the picture describing three possible states of the project listing in the pulse:
As you can see the posts you never checked before and those that have some new comments or replies since you last checked them stand out visually. The ones with no new comments or replies since your last check are faded because you’re not interested in them until some new comment or reply is posted on them. Once that happens it will be automatically moved to the top of the list and emphasized with the green icon and blue bold title with the number of new comments since your last check highlighted on the right side.
Plus all of the new comments and replies are highlighted by the green ‘new’ icon and green line on the respective project, blog, forum, workshop or jock pages.
I think that the Pulse is now well prepared for the site growth. Give it some time and I’m sure it will feel right to you because you don’t need to memorize what you have read anymore – LumberJocks site will do this for you so you can focus just on reading and posting ;)
Oh.. and I almost forgot to mention that now you can also see whether any LumberJock is online or offline. Just pay attention to the buddy icons – jocks currently browsing the site (and not spending their time in the shop…) are marked with the green glow around their buddy icons. Plus we have handy Who’s Online page. You asked for it so now it’s time to enjoy it ;)
Uff.. long entry about the very important features. Let me know how you like them, please…