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UER Forum > Archived Forum Announcements > Forum Read States Change (those little circles) (Viewed 3006 times)
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Alpha Husky


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Forum Read States Change (those little circles)
< on 12/4/2010 3:53 AM >
Posted on Forum: UER Forum
 
Hey everyone,

I'm sure you may have noticed that UER has been running rather slow lately, especially the location database. Pages take longer and longer to generate, and the site as a whole feels rather sluggish.

I want to explain where a big part of this slowdown comes from. As UER grows, the amount of data sitting in our database grows too. The largest part of the database, by far, is the read states system. This is the system that tracks exactly which threads and stuff you have and haven't read, and how far along you were in that thread.

Back when I first coded UER, I decided that I wanted a really awesome read states system. I wanted the system to remember exactly where I left off, even if I want back to that thread months later. So that's what I implemented. But this kind of system is very expensive for the database: In the case of the forum, it requires one database row to be stored per thread per user. With 36,000 members and hundreds of thousands of threads, that adds up to a hell of a lot of rows.

Things get even more messy in the Location Database, where UER can track any comment, location, photo, story, and thread that you have or haven't seen. This amazing system comes at a huge price: The database size of all that information is over two gigabytes.

So, in a major effort to speed up UER's performance across the board for all users, I've made a change to the readstates system. It will be split into two systems:


  • THE BASIC SYSTEM
    This system will automatically be switched on for all users. It stores a single date in the database representing the newest thing you looked at on the site. Any threads that are newer than this date are shown in green, and any posts newer are shown in blue.

    For most people, this system is perfectly fine. But you lose the granularity of UER knowing exactly where you left off in the thread, even months later. In the DB, you lose the ability to see exactly which locations have new comments that you haven't seen. But most people don't need those things anyway.

    For those who would miss that granularity, there is:

  • THE ADVANCED SYSTEM
    The advanced system is the full-on granularity that you have now, if you had readstates switched on. Fully being able to know when there is a single new comment even if it is buried layers deep in the LDB. Remembering exactly where you left off in a new thread, even if you've read a thousand other threads in the meantime.

    Since this Advanced System will be used by much fewer users, it will also greatly reduce the database size, thus speeding up the system for all users. On top of that, UER in general will be much faster for everyone, even people using the Basic System.

    However, because the Advanced System is so much more taxing on the database, it will be available only to Premium Members. So, if you want to use the Advanced System, you'll need to donate at least $5 each month to UER. An automated PayPal Subscription can do this for you so you don't even need to remember.




The Basic System is currently being tested and will be switched on next week. There will be a grace period of 1 month before the read states data for non-Premium members will be deleted. So, if you want to keep your existing Read States data, upgrade to Premium before the end of 2010.

I just want to be clear that this is not a cash grab. However, it is not fair that the read states system slows down UER for everyone, when it really could be quite fast.

If you have any questions, please post below!

Cheers,
-av

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el nerdo 

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Re: Forum Read States Change (those little circles)
<Reply # 1 on 12/4/2010 7:11 AM >
Posted on Forum: UER Forum
 
OMG WTF BBQ THIS IS A BLATANT CASH GRAB FOR AV'S POCKET.

Seriously though, there's one thing about the read-states I hate:

If I mark all threads at "read" and effectively wash my read-states, it should mark everything as actually being read - right now it doesn't. Allow me to explain:

A new thread shows up. Read state bubble is green.

I don't go into that thread. Doesn't interest me for whatever reason.

I mark everything as read on the main page.

I come back a couple days later, and the regional forum I keep an eye on says there are new threads (green bubble).

I go into that forum, and there's really nothing "new" - but there have been new replies to a thread I've never opened... giving me a green bubble.

The bubble should be blue since I've told UER I've read everything. It's not.

Makes it impossible to actually determine what's actually new.

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Re: Forum Read States Change (those little circles)
<Reply # 2 on 12/4/2010 7:16 AM >
Posted on Forum: UER Forum
 
Posted by Avatar-X
Hey everyone,


  • THE BASIC SYSTEM
    This system will automatically be switched on for all users. It stores a single date in the database representing the newest thing you looked at on the site. Any threads that are newer than this date are shown in green, and any posts newer are shown in blue.


  • If I look at the site at 5:00, would all threads and posts from before 5:00 be marked as read?

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    metawaffle 

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    Re: Forum Read States Change (those little circles)
    <Reply # 3 on 12/4/2010 2:03 PM >
    Posted on Forum: UER Forum
     
    Posted by AnAppleSnail


    If I look at the site at 5:00, would all threads and posts from before 5:00 be marked as read?


    That's how I interpreted it.

    Av, how about a facility to choose a 'last read' date? Perhaps a button for "new today", "new since yesterday", "new this week", or something similar. Or, new since some arbitrary date/time.

    The reason I suggest that is that otherwise switching devices or machines is going to just yield nothing new since you last visited. Actually, unless it's catered for, I imagine that's exactly what'll happen if one opens a thread from the New Posts page, then hits the New Posts link to navigate back...

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    Avatar-X 

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    Re: Forum Read States Change (those little circles)
    <Reply # 4 on 12/4/2010 6:21 PM >
    Posted on Forum: UER Forum
     
    el Nerdo: Yeah, this is a problem with how the "advanced" system works. In order to "properly" mark everything as read, it would need to add one record per thread for EVERY thread, even threads you don't plan on ever looking at. This is a prohibitive number of records, so that's why the Mark Read system works differently.

    Meta: The new Basic system keeps a date and shows anything that is newer than that date as being new or unread. Currently, when you read something, the newest date in that thread will be your new "read date".

    Instead of doing that, it might make sense to offer a choice of one of these options:

    • Show the new items since you were last seen on the site (last login, how the New Posts page works)
    • Show the items newer than the newest item you've looked at (this is what I've implemented)
    • Show items newer than a specific setting you configure: 1 day ago, 2 days ago, 1 week ago, etc.
    • Have a "Master Mark Read" button. Show items newer than when you last hit this button. When you click it, it means "i've seen everything I care to."


    I can easily implement all four of these options, so that the users can choose the one they feel most fits their reading style.


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    Avatar-X 

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    Re: Forum Read States Change (those little circles)
    <Reply # 5 on 12/5/2010 12:55 AM >
    Posted on Forum: UER Forum
     
    So, I've actually enabled all of those options I mentioned in the previous thread. You can try them out by going to the new "Read States" options in your profile.

    -av

    huskies - such fluff.
    makman 


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    Re: Forum Read States Change (those little circles)
    <Reply # 6 on 12/5/2010 4:45 AM >
    Posted on Forum: UER Forum
     
    Seems like those options present some decent compromises to make the system work. I'm going with the "mark everything as read button" option, since that fits how I generally browse the site. If it's not too much trouble, could we get that button in the "New Posts" display? I find that's where I do most of my UER browsing.

    Be careful, not safe.

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    Avatar-X 

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    Re: Forum Read States Change (those little circles)
    <Reply # 7 on 12/5/2010 6:35 AM >
    Posted on Forum: UER Forum
     
    Sure can.
    -av

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    Re: Forum Read States Change (those little circles)
    <Reply # 8 on 12/5/2010 12:46 PM >
    Posted on Forum: UER Forum
     
    Can we has christmas now?

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    Re: Forum Read States Change (those little circles)
    <Reply # 9 on 12/5/2010 3:38 PM >
    Posted on Forum: UER Forum
     
    Oh yeah, I better get started on that.

    -av

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    Re: Forum Read States Change (those little circles)
    <Reply # 10 on 12/5/2010 4:38 PM >
    Posted on Forum: UER Forum
     
    Posted by tholcomb
    Can we has christmas now?

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    Re: Forum Read States Change (those little circles)
    <Reply # 11 on 12/5/2010 5:09 PM >
    Posted on Forum: UER Forum
     
    Posted by tholcomb
    Can we has christmas now?


    +1

    i want it toooo!!!

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    Re: Forum Read States Change (those little circles)
    <Reply # 12 on 12/5/2010 5:17 PM >
    Posted on Forum: UER Forum
     
    Av, two quick questions. Will this change apply to the DB as well? Also, what the heck is with the UER error message now showing up under every photo in the DB instead of comments?


    Posted by The Seeker

    +1

    i want it toooo!!!

    You'll sing a different tune after a few days of the UER Christmas theme.

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    makman 


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    Re: Forum Read States Change (those little circles)
    <Reply # 13 on 12/5/2010 8:28 PM >
    Posted on Forum: UER Forum
     
    Posted by Avatar-X
    Sure can.
    -av


    Beat you to it.

    Felt like playing with js today, so I threw together a chrome plugin that adds a link to the new posts page (just reuses the one from the main forum page).

    Install

    Source:

    function markRead(){
    $.ajax({
    url: [url='http://www.uer.ca/forum_showcats.asp?fid=1&action=markread']'http://www.uer.ca...1&action=markr ead'[/url],
    success: function(data){
    location.reload();
    }
    });
    }
    rssimg = $("[src=\"/forum/rss-icon.png\"]")
    bgcell = rssimg.parent().parent();
    newlink = "<br /><a id=\"mark_read_link\" style=\"line-height:2.5em\" class=\"linkinbox\" href=\"#\">Mark all as read</a>";
    bgcell.append(newlink);
    $("#mark_read_link").click(markRead);

    Edit: Not sure why, but the 'code' tag is not preventing the forum's auto-linker from trying to auto-link the url on line 3.
    [last edit 12/5/2010 8:29 PM by makman - edited 1 times]

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    Re: Forum Read States Change (those little circles)
    <Reply # 14 on 12/5/2010 8:48 PM >
    Posted on Forum: UER Forum
     
    Posted by Emperor Wang

    I hate you.



    +1

    hydrotherapy 

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    Re: Forum Read States Change (those little circles)
    <Reply # 15 on 12/5/2010 9:04 PM >
    Posted on Forum: UER Forum
     
    Can the new read states replace Xmas this year?

    Please?

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    TrixieSparrow 


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    Re: Forum Read States Change (those little circles)
    <Reply # 16 on 12/5/2010 9:40 PM >
    Posted on Forum: UER Forum
     
    Posted by hydrotherapy
    Can the new read states replace Xmas this year?

    Please?


    again, plus one.

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    Re: Forum Read States Change (those little circles)
    <Reply # 17 on 12/5/2010 11:50 PM >
    Posted on Forum: UER Forum
     
    Posted by Dresden


    again, plus one.


    don't listen to her! do christmas theme!

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    Re: Forum Read States Change (those little circles)
    <Reply # 18 on 12/6/2010 1:31 AM >
    Posted on Forum: UER Forum
     
    Hm...am I doing something wrong?

    New threads are showing green, existing threads with new replies are showing blue. This is reguardless if I've read the thread or not, which is sort of annoying..

    When twilight draws near, when you are pushed to the very limits of your soul, when it seems that all you have left are the dead remnants of the fabric of your life:
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    Re: Forum Read States Change (those little circles)
    <Reply # 19 on 12/6/2010 1:58 AM >
    Posted on Forum: UER Forum
     
    Posted by WarBird69
    Hm...am I doing something wrong?

    New threads are showing green, existing threads with new replies are showing blue. This is reguardless if I've read the thread or not, which is sort of annoying..


    +1
    very confused!

    Sony a7II | Canon 5D mkII | Canon Rebel XSi | Sony 28mm f/2.0 | Yashica 50mm f/1.9 | Sigma 15mm f/2.8 fisheye | Sigma 10-20mm f/4-5.6 | Canon 50mm f/1.8 STM | Sigma 70-200 f/2.8
    UER Forum > Archived Forum Announcements > Forum Read States Change (those little circles) (Viewed 3006 times)
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