LW Update 3/31 - Post Highlights and Bug Fixes

by Raemon1 min read1st Apr 20182 comments

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Site Meta
Personal Blog

In the last few weeks we implemented several bug fixes, including:

  • Login form gives more useful error messages
  • Fixed most broken post links from the Lesswrong migration. (There are still some issues surrounding linked comments, and old images)
  • Notifications don't appear twice if you reply to your own comment or someone replies to a comment of yours on a post that you created
  • Sequence navigation links at the bottom of the sequence post now properly keep you "in the sequence" (before, they'd send you to the next post, but then the next post wouldn't be in the sequence, just a standalone post). [There are still occasional issues with sequence links at the end of sequence, where the behavior is a bit more complicated because sometimes you're supposed to go to the next sequence and sometimes you're not]
  • Some backend fixes to improve the search functionality.

Usernames

Usernames on the frontpage are clickable again. (We disabled this awhile ago because it was leading to a lot of misclicks. We've changed the Post List Items quite a bit since then, and had heard some complaints about not being able to click on usernames to lead to a user's profile. We'll see how it goes this time)

Highlights

Whenever you publish or edit a post, it now generates a highlight based on the first 2000 characters. In the Recent Discussion section, posts that you haven't read yet will display the highlight so you can get some context before reading comments (the post will be marked with a green dot if you haven't read the post yet, which will disappear as soon as you've expanded the highlight once)

New posts will appear in the recent discussion section (to reduce a weird incentive to comment on your own post to get it onto the frontpage if it was a meta or personal blogpost. The recent discussion section will essentially serve as a chronological list of which posts most recently had some kind of activity)

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2 comments, sorted by Highlighting new comments since Today at 10:58 PM
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People in the rationalist community have complained about Facebook in the past, and this position looks like it is getting more mainstream. It seems possible that there will be an opening for new social media platforms. Before long, journalists may start writing listicles with titles like "9 Facebook Killers to Watch in 2018". LW2 now has an active userbase, a steady volume of posts, and an aesthetic that stands in stark contrast to Facebook's. So it might make an interesting entry in such a listicle. It seems worth at least briefly considering doing some publicist work by e.g. reaching out to the journalist who wrote this article to try to get LW2 in the running for "next hot social media platform" (in case such a race is about to get run). There's the potential benefit of having rationalist memes reach a much broader audience, but also the potential risk of the site's culture change (hopefully the LW2 karma mechanism would preserve the site's culture to some degree). I don't have a particular opinion on whether the risks outweight the benefits, I just wanted to put this possibility on the dev team's radar.

I really don't think LW wants to be the next hot social media platform.