Major Pulse upgrade and "Who's Online"

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Blog entry by Martin Sojka posted 02-25-2007 09:46 PM 1641 reads 0 times favorited 29 comments Add to Favorites Watch

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:

  1. it listed comments and replies as the separate activities (rows in the table)
  2. 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:

New pulse icons

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:

New pulse states

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…

29 comments so far

View Bill's profile


2579 posts in 4131 days

#1 posted 02-25-2007 09:51 PM

I think all of these changes are wonderful Martin. I already love them. Thank you for all the work you do on Lumberjocks.

You mean this is not your full time job (haha)?

Keep this up and I will have to hire you to work on my web site.

-- Bill, Turlock California,

View dennis mitchell's profile

dennis mitchell

3994 posts in 4284 days

#2 posted 02-25-2007 10:08 PM

As I sit here in my new lumberjocks shirt, I’m thinking this is pretty cool! I wonder how This techno challenged jock is going to use this who’s on line feature…there must be some sort of way to just pop in and say hi.

View john's profile


2370 posts in 4351 days

#3 posted 02-25-2007 10:32 PM

Nice work as usual Martin.

-- John in Belgrave (Website) ,

View MsDebbieP's profile


18615 posts in 4130 days

#4 posted 02-25-2007 11:15 PM

here’s a public “congrats”
I sure like seeing that smile “from ear to ear”

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (

View Dick, & Barb Cain's profile

Dick, & Barb Cain

8693 posts in 4269 days

#5 posted 02-26-2007 01:12 AM

A Big Thank you Martin
I think I asked for this once, but you outdid yourself again. I got way more than I asked for, & then some. You sure know how to setup a website.

-- -** You are never to old to set another goal or to dream a new dream ****************** Dick, & Barb Cain, Hibbing, MN.

View scottb's profile


3648 posts in 4297 days

#6 posted 02-26-2007 01:54 AM

WOW! this is great. I was about to tell you I missed all the “reminder e-mails” this now makes the Pulse a great way to keep up… So much to catch up on!


-- I am always doing what I cannot do yet, in order to learn how to do it. - Van Gogh -- --

View frank's profile


1492 posts in 4176 days

#7 posted 02-26-2007 03:38 AM

Hello Martin;
—-GREAT!!! I knew there was something going on when I was not able to get online at first this morning and then I later noticed the changes. Your hard work is producing a great site here at LJ, and again I say thanks….!!!


-- --frank, NH,

View Shawn's profile


225 posts in 4123 days

#8 posted 02-26-2007 04:11 AM

YOu know it’s funny, just yesterday I was going to email to about the lack of userfriendlyness of the pulse, and alose about having a “who’s online” Martin you’re cleary lightyears ahead of us…great work, and again, thank’s for creating and running this wonderful site.

-- Cheers

View darryl's profile


1795 posts in 4296 days

#9 posted 02-26-2007 04:32 AM

everything looks and works great, thanks Martin!

View Obi's profile


2213 posts in 4207 days

#10 posted 02-26-2007 04:42 AM

I was going to suggest the “Chat Room” atmosphere so you could see who all was here when you came in the room… and this is the next best thing.

View Martin Sojka's profile

Martin Sojka

1893 posts in 4442 days

#11 posted 02-26-2007 06:30 PM

Thanks for such a positive feedback. Now we just need to keep the pulse pulsing ;)

View Martin Sojka's profile

Martin Sojka

1893 posts in 4442 days

#12 posted 03-04-2007 10:38 AM

I don’t know about you but I was missing the author name in the new pulse design. When the post was commented by someone else I had no idea who was the original author until I actually checked (or remembered the name from the last check). So now the author is there. Feel free to let me know whether you think this works for you or not.

View cabinetman's profile


144 posts in 4113 days

#13 posted 03-04-2007 01:28 PM


You keep outdoing yourself. That little touch makes The Pulse more informative. Couldn’t ask for more…except for live chat. That way us geezers can communicate before we forget what we wanted to say.

View MsDebbieP's profile


18615 posts in 4130 days

#14 posted 03-04-2007 01:39 PM

I had noticed that Martin but wasn’t too worried about it.
This is better.

Thanks for taking care of us :)

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (

View Obi's profile


2213 posts in 4207 days

#15 posted 03-04-2007 02:17 PM

Not that it’s too hard, but I was getting confused. I’d mistake the last entry as the author, and then make a comment to the person posting instead od the author and, then I’d hit post and by then it was too late to retract the comment.

This is much better

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