Site feedback

In the forum, I think it would help (me) to see not just the short date, but the year. If you end up on a page randomly (especially from a google search) you need to know if the information is new or old. I'll also say, while I haven't spent much time creating posts here, I find the system difficult to use - I wanted to make this post, but wasn't sure where to put it and when I thought I'd found the right subject to post under, I discovered it was closed when I got there and pointed to another post (which was missing / deleted). It's likely I won't post here much anyway, but wanted to give a little feedback.


@Cecile Is this something that can be changed ?


Hello @bhagara, welcome to the soup. I will look into how to make the full date appear.

Regarding posting, I will look into how we can make it more obvious to newcomer because, really, it is very simple:

The soup has 2 main categories called Channels:

  • the E.R. where people post questions and get responses by other members.

  • the Lounge where people can have in depth discussion.

All other channels are supporting channels, such as the feedback channel where I have moved your post, the resources channels where you can find specific ressources for various needs.

Any topic, any post, any questions can always be posted without bothering about selecting a channel for it: I usually will relocate things where they belong. By default, anything posted without specifying a channel will be in the "floating channel" which I clean up regularly.

Nevertheless, Discourse search engine is so great that you can find anything by using the search functionality, regardless of where it is classified. The best thing is to type in some tags to support that search capability.

I hope that helps!


Thank you for the help in getting my posting into the right place. Your assertion that it's really very simple would be an insult if I had feelings. I can only guess that you've been using this software for some time or were involved in it's development. When someone says that something is 'really easy to use' I find that one or both of these is true. I would say objectively that it isn't. As someone who is new to the tool... I really don't know where to start with this.

The Hamburger menu just gives me a different view of the same thing...

Here's an article that came to mind from my distant past. I first read this in PC Magazine in 1991 and went to find a copy because I think it's still relevant.

Clearly the only fix for my issue is to spend some time learning this tool, but 'intuitive' it isn't.

and as I was finishing this and wanted to submit it...

Thank you for clarifying and for the screen shots! It is true that as the admin, I do not always see how the others see the site.

What do you see when you click on the fmsoup logo?

Clicking on the logo yields a better starting point... with the floating item at the top-left, that's helpful. But that's kinda a random thing to have to do to see it.

First off, great stuff and thanks for asking for feedback. One thing that works well is I like how the cancel button on replies is subtle. The cancel button is just an artifact of early video games and doesn't really belong on websites like this (since you can just go somewhere else), but if you're going to keep it, definitely make it subtle so people don't click it by accident.

In terms of improvements ditto Everything Bhagara says, with a few other notes.

The three things I do most (Search, New, and Reply) are all subtle, hidden buttons. Can you make them all stand out?

Excellent article ! What he writes is so true. You have to be told how it works to fins something intuitive. If someone comes out with an app that looks like nothing you have ever seen, then you say "it's not intuitive".

Lisa was the first computer that brought a graphical interface. That was a good interface, but nobody would have tell you it's intuitive.

By the way, who wrote that article, was it Dvorak ?

it was... John C Dvorak. He was someone I followed closely back then... just enough curmudgeon for me.

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In these times, PC Magazine was a very good magazine and we were eagerly waiting for the next month publication. And there was also Dr Dobbs Journal. That was a fantastic time !

But wait, see

But when the first Mac came out once you learned a few "very basic" models it did become intuitive, and you could intuitively learn other software on the same platform because of those standards. In reference to this website there are standards that could be applied (most important things (new post and reply) being bolder colors, search box always expanded to provide a visual anchor, post reply on right instead of left, etc.) to make it more intuitive to people who are familiar with Macs or iPhones or the web.

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Agreed. Intuitive doesn’t only mean “can start from scratch with no help.” As you said, once you learned a few basics, the fact that most developers followed the Human Interface Guidelines of the Mac operating system made it easy for users to extrapolate (intuit?) that the same or similar actions would work elsewhere.

Also, I have to say that I guessed the article’s author was John C. Dvorak before I found his name. He managed to fill an entire article “fleshing out” the opinion that turned out to boil down to this: the word “intuitive” is a completely superfluous word that cannot be applied to anything.

This guy holds the record for the most-often-wrong tech opinion column writer, and that’s saying something, considering the competition.


Good point @bhagara. I've modified the label of the "reply" button in the message composer to reflect its purpose. It now says, "Post my Reply."


I think these should all be the same... "Post", "Send", "Submit". Post my Reply is certainly better, but not sure why this is different from ** every. other. form. ever. **

Send implies it goes to a specific person. Agreed, should just say "submit" or "post" everywhere. Even submitting this comment I had to stop and process if "post my reply" was the right thing.

Again, please make this button your highlight blue color so it stands out also. It turns blue when I hover over, which isn't needed, I just want to know where to click and esp with it on the left it's just odd

A bit of context for you @bhagara.

The people supporting this forum are all volunteering their time. Not like "interns" that are expected to do things when they are told to. We have many priorities: actual jobs, home lives, bills to pay, etc.

Discourse provides labels for each of the page objects and there are a great number of them. Many. The default distro of Discourse provides a label which identifies the type of action and the context of the action. That in itself is sensible. Even so, I appreciate that by trying to be specific they have introduced an issue. The labelling could be improved in place. At this point, most of us have managed to fumble though and figure out which button to hit.

I appreciate your grumbling that the labelling is confusing and I welcome the opportunity to improve the UI of the site but please, remember to be generous and constructive in your criticism.


I may have been overly * emphatic *... please forgive me.