By old content, do you mean the topic/first post in a thread? If so, that’s a result of being on the new system. Once you’ve started reading a thread, the system will remember where you left off. So when you come back by clicking on a thread title, you’ll be sent to the last read post, not the last post. Also, each topic/first post in a thread has a summary area at the bottom of that first post. There is a section that shows you the avatar (it’s clickable too) of who last posted in the thread and when. If you click on the time element (for example, “2d”, that will take you directly to the last post in the thread. Again, it’s part of letting the system get to know you and your reading behavior.
hich is based on infinite scroll).
We completely agree that reducing barriers to doing some or getting to content is super important. And this new system throws a whole bunch of them in your face. But we really feel once you get to know the basics and then some of the cool odds and ends, you’ll be happier for it. And I can completely sympathize with the strangeness infinite scroll presents, but combined with additional features to aid in navigation, we still feel it offers a better experience overall. On its own, infinite scroll would be limiting in getting through a very long thread. But with the addition of the following features (some of which I’ve mentioned), navigating a thread should be just as easy as clicking page buttons. The features include:
The Timeline/scroll bar
- It shows you what post you’re on and how many are left (much like what page you’re on),
- It allows you to scroll up and down by dragging the green slider, making it super easy to go from first to last post
- It shows you the date when posts were made, while you scroll, so you can go to a specific point in time (the date is located under the current post #/total post # indicator, besides the green bar)
- A Back button appears in long threads, that takes you back to your last read post in the thread, while also indicating on the timeline your “I’ve read up to this point” position within the entire thread
Last Reply link in the he topic (first post) summary section
- Takes you to the last post in the thread when you click on the last reply Date
Remember where you left off
- When signed in, Discourse remembers where you left off, so no starting at the very beginning of a thread
On mobile, post #/total post # progress bar
- Clicking the progress bar brings up the timeline/scroll bar and an option to jump to a specific post
Our staff was used to the structure and boundaries that the page buttons offered, and the slight feeling of accomplishment when you got to the bottom of a thread page, even if it was page 1 of 100. So that sense of getting to the end is definitely gone and could easily make it feel like a long thread will go on forever, with no end in sight. That was a by-product, I think, of using vBulletin-style forums for over 10 years. It definitely took time to get comfortable with the infinite scroll.
Thanks for the feedback, donovan5. Could the post # indicator in the timeline maybe provide you the same “position” information as the page number buttons? So instead of thinking “I have 10 pages to read”, it would translate to “I have 15 posts to read. I’ll stop at 15 today and read until 30 tomorrow”.
And remember, if you’re logged in, the system will remember where you left off, so no need really to remember where you left off.
Can you share why navigating has gotten harder for you? I imagine if you are coming to a new thread, you would start at the first post and work your way down (or maybe the last post and working backwards?). In the past, with the page buttons, would you hop around different pages of a thread, not reading the thread in order? As for moving down the posts in a thread, you can best accomplish this with the scroll wheel on your mouse, or by clicking the down arrow on your keyboard, or by using the timeline’s green scroll bar. This same action can be performed by your web browser windows scroll bar if you don’t want to use the timeline. Simply drag it all the way down, and if the thread is long enough, more posts will automatically load. However, that method will take a considerably longer amount of time to get to the last post in a thread.
Thanks for all of the feedback.