I am having some trouble seeing my responses to a post after refreshing an article (but they still show up in the right-hand sidebar). Anyone else having this problem? I am using Firefox 16.0.2. Is this a bug or a "feature" (I think some of us are all too aware of the sometimes blurry distinction...)?
Possible explanation: The last thread you appear to have posted in had 1249 comments. Right under where it says Sort by: Top, I did see a box that said Show: 500 and under that, a link that said Load all Comments. If it was only showing the top 500 comments, a new comment might not be visible by default.
Can you see your post after clicking the Load all Comments link, or is it still not visible?
The other problem with searching is that comments which aren't immediately visible on the page-- "continue this thread" and "comment score below threshold" (and the comments to that comment)-- won't show up in search. I hate this feature with an abiding hatred.
There are a number of issues with post visibility on this site. When I first posted here, it actually took a week for me to figure out just how to make my post visible. And when I posted here again recently after not posting for a while, I had this problem again, although the last time it was actually a different issue, I believe.
As a programmer, my analysis is that many of the issues about post visibility that bother me would not really require major code changes. Most are just usability-type things, like better placement or sizing for interface functionality. The search issue you mentioned might require slightly more tweaking. Unfortunately, it sounds from your comment below that there really is no one actively maintaining the site.
Honestly, I wish I could try fixing some of it myself, but even if I could get access the code (I heard somewhere that it is open source?), I have no idea how I would get approval for the changes.
It's all here. Eliezer approves most change requests, I assume. And the TrikeApps people would probably review the implementation, when they have time.
Thanks. I will take a look at it. Once I finish setting it up and sift through the codebase to find the templates and other frontend interface things, I'll see what I can do.
If I made code contributions to LW, reading this would make me associate sad thoughts with that work, and I would be less likely to do it as much. Maybe we could be more encouraging to the nice people who provide us with this free service? I mean, still point out things that could work better, but without the emotionally charged hyperbole.
Are you a programmer? I and most of the programmers I've been in contact with (at least from the hacker subculture, not the corporate software engineering types) seem to prefer the blunt and hyperbolic criticism so long as it's informative.
Yes, I am a programmer, of the professional software engineering type.
Have you considered how much this aspect of hacker culture excludes programmers who otherwise might make valuable contributions? Programmers who don't prefer hyperbolic criticism (or at least can't rationalize self-reporting that they prefer it) won't stick around in an environment where that is the norm.
Also, the sentence I objected to, "I hate this feature with an abiding hatred", adds no useful information. (Maybe you think it reflects the importance of the issue, but I don't think prioritizing by expressiveness of the users is an effective strategy.)
For some indication of how this issue affects actual LW developers, see this post.
The impression I get is that hackers consider the information benefit of allowing it to be worth the collateral damage to potential developers, for more or less the same reasons that people use Crocker's Rules. That is only an impression; I am near to, but not part of, said culture, and cannot speak for it.
Upvoted for the concrete example.
(something about the echo in your first line makes me feel like my phrasing offended you. For purposes of debugging my social module, I would appreciate it if you confirm or deny that.)
Responses such as yours may well discourage people from thinking about how the site could be better at all, for fear that they might not be doing it politely enough and might draw a belittling response.
It seems to me far more likely that they would think about it a tiny amount less, and express their thoughts more constructively, which would be better overall. We will still have far more people pointing out work that needs to be done than people willing to actually do the work.
I cannot fathom how this comment can be so downvoted. Snarky remarks do hurt, and pointing that out is necessary. Placing the duty to be charitable on the receiver is one of the primary failure modes of communication. I do understand that both LW and programmers draw an above average amount of their demographics from non-NT people, but rejecting the reality of emotions in the majority (even in the programmers group) will not improve anyone's experiences.
I might be more careful in my phrasing in the future, though I'll note that your opinion is pretty hypothetical. Most of my take is that I keep getting told that there are no resources for site development, so it doesn't seem as though what I say (and what I said was not especially nasty) is likely to make much difference.
Thank you! I can see my posts now when following those instructions. I confess, I didn't want to post an entire discussion article just to ask this question, but I was going crazy trying to figure it out.