61 votes

You can now set a (global) default sort/period for topic listings + initial default changed to "activity, last 24 hours"

As we talked about in the daily discussion yesterday (which was great, thanks for all the feedback), I've got a few changes coming soon that will help people customize what they're seeing.

The first piece of these is out now—changes to the way topic listings are sorted:

  1. I've changed the default sort for the site from "activity, all time" to "activity, last 24 hours". This will mean that the same older threads aren't constantly getting bumped back up to the top of the site, but you can still easily change the time period drop down back to "all time" if you want to see if any older ones are active too.
  2. You can now set your own default sort and period, which (currently) applies to both your home page and individual groups. To do this, change the options on the home page (not inside a group) to whatever you want to use as your default, and a "Set as default" button will appear after the time period dropdown.

I'll be adding the ability to set separate defaults for each group before too much longer as well, and I'll also make a daily discussion post a little later.

27 comments

  1. [7]
    aphoenix Link
    I kind of liked that old threads didn't die - I think there's something about recurring threads that were great and distinct from other aggregators, where timeliness was of the utmost importance....

    I kind of liked that old threads didn't die - I think there's something about recurring threads that were great and distinct from other aggregators, where timeliness was of the utmost importance. It seems to have put a focus more on the content itself.

    21 votes
    1. [4]
      Deimos Link Parent
      Agreed, it had benefits as well, but I think it's not working very well right now between the combination of the overall site activity kicking up and the absence of tools to filter out either...

      Agreed, it had benefits as well, but I think it's not working very well right now between the combination of the overall site activity kicking up and the absence of tools to filter out either specific tags or individual topics.

      Once there's some filtering ability, I may change it back to "all time" by default, but right now I think it was keeping the same things at the top of the site for too long for everyone, with no ability for anyone to get rid of ones they don't care for.

      15 votes
      1. [3]
        Grapevine Link Parent
        I feel that wiping any posts from more than a day ago is a tad too much though, I think the "last 3 days" option would make a far better default; I generally check in every other day or so, and I...

        I feel that wiping any posts from more than a day ago is a tad too much though, I think the "last 3 days" option would make a far better default; I generally check in every other day or so, and I feel that now I may miss out on good discussions just because I don't come on here daily.

        8 votes
        1. [2]
          Deimos (edited ) Link Parent
          I mean, they're not "wiped". If you prefer "activity, last 3 days" you can set that as your default, that's exactly what this change is for (and like I said in this other comment, I'll probably...

          I mean, they're not "wiped". If you prefer "activity, last 3 days" you can set that as your default, that's exactly what this change is for (and like I said in this other comment, I'll probably increase the time period again once it's easier for people to filter things).

          9 votes
          1. Grapevine Link Parent
            Of course, I'm hot saying they're gone forever after a day. What I'm saying is that I won't be able to participate in discussion after a day, as most people won't be able to see the thread pop...

            Of course, I'm hot saying they're gone forever after a day. What I'm saying is that I won't be able to participate in discussion after a day, as most people won't be able to see the thread pop back up anymore.

            I like the idea of it not being all time, it keeps things fresh, but a middle ground would be nice.

            5 votes
    2. Luca Link Parent
      While I don't disagree, I have concerns on how the old default could have scaled as the site grows. I'd be concerned about the same subset of posts pretty much being bumped indefinitely. Then...

      While I don't disagree, I have concerns on how the old default could have scaled as the site grows. I'd be concerned about the same subset of posts pretty much being bumped indefinitely.

      Then again, this new default could also lead to more reposts and repeated discussion, especially for some of the broader topics and talks.

      5 votes
    3. BuckeyeSundae Link Parent
      yeah, I pretty much immediately set activity to 3 days as my custom default, since I plan on keeping active in slower communities like ~creative.

      yeah, I pretty much immediately set activity to 3 days as my custom default, since I plan on keeping active in slower communities like ~creative.

      5 votes
  2. Emerald_Knight Link
    Thanks for the hard work as always, @Deimos!

    Thanks for the hard work as always, @Deimos!

    19 votes
  3. [7]
    ZaphodBeebblebrox Link
    Set as default does not work for me. I set it back to all time, clicked set as default, and typed tildes.net and my sort went back to activity 24 hours.

    Set as default does not work for me. I set it back to all time, clicked set as default, and typed tildes.net and my sort went back to activity 24 hours.

    7 votes
    1. [4]
      Deimos Link Parent
      Whoops, I think there's a bug with setting it to "all time", sorry. You could use the "other period" to set a long one (30d or 100d or something) for now, but I'll fix that shortly.

      Whoops, I think there's a bug with setting it to "all time", sorry. You could use the "other period" to set a long one (30d or 100d or something) for now, but I'll fix that shortly.

      8 votes
      1. [3]
        ZaphodBeebblebrox Link Parent
        Thanks for the workaround.

        Thanks for the workaround.

        1 vote
        1. [2]
          Deimos Link Parent
          I think it should be fixed now, let me know if it still won't stick though.

          I think it should be fixed now, let me know if it still won't stick though.

          5 votes
    2. [2]
      apoctr Link Parent
      Yeah, same happens for me. Refreshing the page will also result in the "Set as default" option coming up again. Looks like it's not sticking?

      Yeah, same happens for me. Refreshing the page will also result in the "Set as default" option coming up again. Looks like it's not sticking?

      1 vote
      1. Deimos Link Parent
        I think it should be fixed now, let me know if it still won't stick though.

        I think it should be fixed now, let me know if it still won't stick though.

        3 votes
  4. ContemplativePanda Link
    Thank you for this, this will help a lot. I sometimes saw old threads and thought they were new and jumped into it and realized most of the discussion had already passed. It'll be nice to have a...

    Thank you for this, this will help a lot. I sometimes saw old threads and thought they were new and jumped into it and realized most of the discussion had already passed. It'll be nice to have a selection of slightly newer topics instead.

    5 votes
  5. [2]
    kalebo Link
    What are your thoughts on eventually adding post pinning for a group? Or group specific defaults? The reason being is that purposefully long running threads will be effected by the change in the...

    What are your thoughts on eventually adding post pinning for a group? Or group specific defaults? The reason being is that purposefully long running threads will be effected by the change in the defaults. As an example the speedart threads over in ~creative last for a week before being retired and I would imagine the number of submissions dropping significantly if the thread is not bumped by thread activity.

    5 votes
    1. Deimos Link Parent
      I think it'll definitely be necessary. The speedart thread is a really good example of one that'll be hurt by the shorter default, thanks for bringing that up. I'm working on group-specific...

      I think it'll definitely be necessary. The speedart thread is a really good example of one that'll be hurt by the shorter default, thanks for bringing that up.

      I'm working on group-specific defaults right now, so then people should be able to set their default in ~creative (and some of the other lower-activity ones) back to "activity, all time".

      7 votes
  6. tan Link
    Glad of this change - it was definitely a growing concern as threads could continually occupy the top spots just by virtue of a single deep nested little thread. Nice work :)

    Glad of this change - it was definitely a growing concern as threads could continually occupy the top spots just by virtue of a single deep nested little thread. Nice work :)

    4 votes
  7. rib Link
    This works fairly well to reduce the redundancy of reading the same thing repeatedly. In the same vein, if you had the ability to filter/hide 'seen' threads then that would have similar effect. Or...

    This works fairly well to reduce the redundancy of reading the same thing repeatedly. In the same vein, if you had the ability to filter/hide 'seen' threads then that would have similar effect. Or perhaps a more novel idea: 'hide seen threads with no new comments', that way active threads would still get bumped into your vision.

    Of course it'd be most useful if used in conjunction with the ability to mark threads hide/ignore, the end effect being you have a list new un-seen threads, and threads you're interested in. i.e only the good stuff.

    4 votes
  8. Trin Link
    I agree with the person suggesting the default to be 3 days instead of 24 hours. I think there is a lot to be said for keeping old topics alive, and restricting to 24 hours feels very reddit - not...

    I agree with the person suggesting the default to be 3 days instead of 24 hours. I think there is a lot to be said for keeping old topics alive, and restricting to 24 hours feels very reddit - not that this is bad in itself, but I thought the plan was to move at least slightly away from ephemeral content. I think this is especially relevant currently as some smaller subtildes don't have a lot of content day-to-day.

    By the way, we seriously need a search button or the like. I've noticed several identical topics popping up over the course of the past week - for example, https://tildes.net/~talk/1x9/whats_something_youre_passionate_about and https://tildes.net/~talk/1gb/what_are_you_passionate_about.

    3 votes
  9. Halfdeaf Link
    I like it. It feels right for the moment while we are seeing increased activity and don't have proper filtering yet. Now being able to make persistent changes to each group will be awesome.

    I like it. It feels right for the moment while we are seeing increased activity and don't have proper filtering yet. Now being able to make persistent changes to each group will be awesome.

    2 votes
  10. [5]
    joelthelion Link
    Quick question: shouldn't votes count as activity? Maybe not each individual vote, but maybe over a certain threshold?

    Quick question: shouldn't votes count as activity? Maybe not each individual vote, but maybe over a certain threshold?

    1 vote
    1. [4]
      Deimos Link Parent
      Not in my opinion, but it's possible that I'm just thinking of what activity represents differently. For me, it's something like "something happened in this topic, so you might want to take a look...

      Not in my opinion, but it's possible that I'm just thinking of what activity represents differently. For me, it's something like "something happened in this topic, so you might want to take a look at again if you're interested in it". Votes wouldn't matter for that, because there's not really anything new to see.

      That is, I guess I'm thinking of it as something like "topic has recent activity", not "topic is particularly active", if that makes sense.

      3 votes
      1. [3]
        joelthelion (edited ) Link Parent
        The reason I'm suggesting this is that the current setting tends to favor posts that attract lots of comments to the detriment of interesting ones that don't. For example, "It's almost the end of...

        The reason I'm suggesting this is that the current setting tends to favor posts that attract lots of comments to the detriment of interesting ones that don't. For example, "It's almost the end of the week, how's your week been going so far?" will attract far more comments than "Zig – a programming language designed for robustness, optimality, and clarity", and as such will be much more visible.

        4 votes
        1. [2]
          Deimos Link Parent
          Yeah, I definitely understand. This is actually what I'm planning to talk about as the daily discussion for tomorrow - I think there's a bit of an interesting conflict happening right now between...

          Yeah, I definitely understand. This is actually what I'm planning to talk about as the daily discussion for tomorrow - I think there's a bit of an interesting conflict happening right now between prioritizing discussion vs. prioritizing quality content.

          3 votes
          1. joelthelion Link Parent
            I wouldn't want to see activity disappearing completely, I think it's a very interesting novelty. But there has to be a tradeoff somewhere.

            I wouldn't want to see activity disappearing completely, I think it's a very interesting novelty. But there has to be a tradeoff somewhere.

            1 vote