MATLAB Answers

Walter Roberson

MATLAB Answers Wish-list #2 (and bug reports)

Asked by Walter Roberson
on 29 Jun 2012
Latest activity Commented on by Walter Roberson
on 1 Jul 2015 at 8:01

This topic is for features you would like to see for the MATLAB Answers facility itself, and also for bug reports about the MATLAB Answers facility.

This topic is the follow on to the earlier Wish-list for MATLAB Answer sections. That topic grew large enough to become unwieldy; and Mathworks has made enough changes to make a number of the past points no longer of relevance.

I suggest one wish (or bug report) per answer, so that people can vote their wishes.

  10 Comments

Jan Simon
on 4 Jul 2012

It is not the HTML, but the JavaScript, which let us suffer. Waht about a new label for computers: Ready for Windows 9, DirectX 13 and MATLAB Answers 2.0?

Daniel
on 22 Aug 2012

@Lucas the point of creating a Wish-list #2 was the release of "Answers 2.0" which made many of the previous wishes obsolete. I think it is useful to keep all the wishes together.

Walter Roberson
on 22 Aug 2012

Daniel, Wish-list #2 was created because it became impractical to navigate the many many entries in the first wish-list. The possibility that #3 would be created at some point was mooted early on in #2, in the comments above, but there hasn't been enough response to that to determine criteria for the next split (which will happen, in time.)

Products

No products are associated with this question.

72 Answers

Answer by Jan Simon
on 30 Jun 2012

Pictures should be hosted on a TMW server, because other services will delete the pictures after some time and then the corresponding thread becomes meaningless.

  6 Comments

Image Analyst
on 27 Sep 2013

Randy, one problem that's bitten me several times. If you write a response, then click the paper clip icon to add a file, and then decide that you don't want to attach it then and click cancel, then it completely blows away the response you just entered! Thank goodness I have Lazarus installed ( http://getlazarus.com/download. It's saved me more times than I can count.

Kent Millard
on 27 Sep 2013

Thanks for letting us know; we'll get to work on fixing it.

Matt J
on 28 Sep 2013

It would also be nice to be able to upload .mat files more easily, see also

http://www.mathworks.com/matlabcentral/answers/88363-why-can-answers-only-accept-zipped-mat-attachments


Matt J
Answer by Matt J
on 28 Apr 2013
Edited by Matt J
on 28 Apr 2013

Apologies if this has been suggested. The list has grown long and difficult to search....

I think there should be a privilege (earned at 1000 reputation points or so) that allows contributors to transform an Answer into a Comment (and vice versa?)

All too often, newcomers to the site don't understand how things work and instead of responding to Answers with Comments, they respond with Answers of their own. It would be good for trusted contributors to have the power to fix this.

  6 Comments

Image Analyst
on 29 Apr 2013

Same here. I always wondered how it sorted the items. Like how this one could be added at some arbitrary place in the middle of a big long list, rather than at the end.

Daniel
on 29 Apr 2013

@IA, I think it sorts by number of votes (high to low) and then date (oldest to newest). It looks like you up voted my answer and it is now higher in the list...

Matt J
on 29 Apr 2013

On my display this is currently directly over my duplicate suggestion.

I knew I couldn't have been the first... Oh well, I +1'ed it. :-)


Answer by Daniel
on 1 Jul 2012

The tag system needs an upgrade. Ideally, when you enter a tag it should provide a brief overview of what the tag means. Low rep users should only be able to apply existing tags. Moderate rep users should be able to create new tags (with a corresponding definition).

  0 Comments


Answer by Daniel
on 8 Aug 2012

A proper set of moderator tools that allows for merging duplicate questions and moving answers to comments when appropriate.

  0 Comments


Answer by Image Analyst
on 26 Oct 2012

I would like it if a person ended up on your profile (by clicking the link that is your name) that, in addition to the profile privileges, questions, answers, comments, and email, it also had a link to my File Exchange. If I didn't have anything in the File Exchange then the link wouldn't be there but it would be there if I did have something in the File Exchange. It makes sense that if someone is interested enough to look up a person's profile and all their answers, etc. that they might also have an interest in visiting the person's File Exchange to see what useful programs the person has uploaded. I'd also like to see my own. It would be convenient for me, if I want to recommend one of my File Exchange submissions to someone, that a link to my File Exchange were right there on the left side below My Questions, My Answers, My Comments. It would save me from having to bring up my bookmark toolbar, locate the bookmark to my File Exchange and click on it.

  0 Comments


Answer by Daniel
on 18 Jan 2013

I am trying to find unanswered questions with 0 votes, but I want them listed newest to oldest. If I search for unanswered and sort by votes, I get all the questions with 0 votes sorted by date, but oldest to newest, followed by all the questions wit 1 vote, again sorted oldest to newest.

I am trying to close unclear and inappropriate questions which are unanswered. Basically I am trying to work through the unanswered questions. If the question is reasonable, I vote for it. If the question is inappropriate or unclear I add a comment saying what is inappropriate or unclear and close it. This leads me to needing the odd sort order/search capability.

I guess the first question is, is this filtering useful?

  4 Comments

Daniel
on 18 Jan 2013

According to about closing means that if the OP does not edit the question within 10 days, the question gets deleted. My feeling is that when we add comments like "format your code" or "what is your question" or tag it "doit4me", we should close the question. This has two effects. First the question disappears from the front page and other won't waste time looking at the question. Second, if the OP doesn't deal with it in 10 days, it gets deleted. I think both might cut down on the noise.

I have decided that what I am saying when I vote for an unanswered question is: Hey other contributors this question is not rubbish. There is potentially enough information to answer it.

Jan Simon
on 18 Jan 2013

I've asked hundreds of times for code formatting, but I definitely did not want the questions to be deleted, the users to be scared or the editors to waste time for checking.

But to stay on topic: More powerful search options would support your useful project to cleanup old not answered questions. And I appreciate your work.

Sean de Wolski
on 18 Jan 2013

@Daniel, thanks for doing this!

Let Randy know if you notice any trends or anything else noteworthy or that could be useful to you.


Answer by Jan Simon
on 2 Jul 2012

As explained in the wish-list #1 already, the space on top of a section is larger than the one on the bottom:

 This block belongs to the sentence on top. It could be code also.

Now a new section starts, but the indent block seem to belong to this new section, because it is nearer. Because larger horizontal skipping is possible with HTML tricks only, it is hard to structure the text optically.

Solution: While I assume, that the spacing should be smaller on the top than on the bottom in most cases, making them equal might be the best compromise.

 

Another example:

This is line 1:

a = rand(1, 1);

This is line 2:

b = rand(2, 2);

While this is the 3rd line:

c = rand(3, 3);

  1 Comment

Randy Souza
on 2 Jul 2012

Thanks Jan, I'll make sure this gets fixed.


Answer by Daniel
on 24 Aug 2012

That someone for TMW would chime in about the Wish list format (with or without the standard disclaimers about personal opinions ... ). Should we be sending bugs to files@mathworks.com, to TMW customer support, or posting them here. What about our suggestions for "product enhancements"? Is one long list better than multiple short lists? Is a list for bugs and a lists for wishes better? I think as a community we are pretty ambivalent about the format of our wish list, so if anyone at TMW who deals with this stuff has even a weak opinion it would be useful.

  0 Comments


Answer by Amro
on 24 Aug 2012

Syntax Highlighting

In the meantime, I created a userscript that applies MATLAB syntax highlighting using google-code-prettify (it was originally intended for Stack Overflow). Project is hosted on GitHub.

Install userscript directly from the following link: prettify-mathworks-answers.user.js

  0 Comments


Answer by Matt Fig
on 10 Sep 2012

I wish the answers software would automatically delete the tag: MATLAB.

  2 Comments

Walter Roberson
on 10 Sep 2012

I know what you mean, but it should possibly only do that if there are other tags. It is tricky for me to search for "no tags" in order to post the comment prompting people to tag properly.

Though I wouldn't mind if there were better tag prompting including a link to the tag guide...

Walter Roberson
on 10 Sep 2012

Also "matlab code". And "help". And "1" and "123"...


Answer by Azzi Abdelmalek
on 14 Sep 2012

I want an Editor for Matlab Answers like the one on Facebook. On the top of your page you will have notifications related only to the questions you have answered

  1. number of news comments
  2. number of new answered questions
  3. number of new accepted aswers

and when you click on the notification you will be redirected to the question.

  1 Comment

per isakson
on 15 Sep 2012

Why not to both

  1. your own Questions and
  2. Questions you have answered or have made comments on

A comment often is a kind of promise to return to the Question when OP has added more info


Answer by Azzi Abdelmalek
on 20 Sep 2012
Edited by Azzi Abdelmalek
on 20 Sep 2012

The text editor can be improved. Beginners have some difficulties to deal with it. I don't like the preview in another window. It's more flexible if the window were we write the code is the same as the preview. I suggest when we click on the code button, a window or highlighted zone appears, then we are sur that our code is well formated

  1 Comment

Kevin Claytor
on 24 Sep 2012

I would love code highlighting similar (okay, identical to) the MATLAB editor. I think it would encourage people to make use of the code tags more.

Also, if the code tags could be actual tags; [code][/code], I think it would be much more intuitive.


Answer by Daniel
on 24 Sep 2012
Edited by Daniel
on 24 Sep 2012

The close/reopen system needs a rework. I don't know how to see the reason that a question got closed. I also don't know if the OP can see the reason or if they get an alert. More importantly, if a question get closed simply editing the question should not be enough to reopen it. For example, in this question the edit was "P.S. Why is it (The thread) closed?". Edits to the question should raise a flag and confirmation from someone with enough rep to reopen the question.

The only way to deal with persistent reopening is to either give up or delete the question. Deleting a persistently reopened question will likely result in persistent reposting. While the ability to close a question is useful for cutting down spam, the current system is ineffectual.

  5 Comments

Daniel
on 24 Sep 2012

@Walter In an ideal world I think closing and reopening should be done by a voting system where to be eligible to reopen an edit had to be made. We close questions so infrequently that I don't think it matters. It is just frustrating when you close a question to see it reopened with no real change of content.

Walter Roberson
on 25 Oct 2012

Closing is the mechanism used when it is intended that the user be able to edit and reopen the Question. When it is intended to prevent that, the Question is Deleted instead.

Myself, I do not think that requiring the editors to vote on closing a Question is efficient enough in practice. We do not presently have a sufficient number of active trusted volunteers to sustain such a system. The volunteers are mostly here in pursuit of their technical interests, not to do administrative maintenance.

Walter Roberson
on 25 Oct 2012

It is already asked... but it isn't displayed.


Answer by Ryan
on 28 Sep 2012

Perhaps there is a method of which I am not aware, but I would like to be able to track questions that I commented on and not actually answered.

  4 Comments

Ryan
on 30 Sep 2012

thanks - will work I suppose. seems like it would be a simple feature to add.

Star Strider
on 30 Sep 2012

Searching for comments from one's Profile page might eliminate the ‘string-matched name’ problem, since that would ideally use one's Contributors number.

I like Ryan's ‘comment search’ idea! +1

Sean de Wolski
on 13 Feb 2013

This functionality has been added.


Answer by Image Analyst
on 3 Jan 2013

New issue, I just noticed today. If I use the Link button to copy a link of a comment that is not one of the last 3 posted, then have that link be a link in another comment (referring reader to the first comment), OR even just paste that link into the address field (of two different browsers, IE and Firefox), it goes to the top of the posting, it does not scroll directly to the comment. An example of this is the link which is http://www.mathworks.com/matlabcentral/answers/42413#comment_102678. Some investigation leads me to think that the problem occurs when the comment referred to is not one of the last 3 comments posted, in other words, it's one of those that are normally hidden and you have to reveal by clicking "Show n older comments." Can this be fixed? Otherwise we can't link to "hidden" comments.

  4 Comments

Walter Roberson
on 8 Feb 2013

I have seen it.

Related to this is that now my browser Find function can only find content that is expanded.

Image Analyst
on 8 Feb 2013

Well that I can understand because your browser only looks at what characters actually got returned from the web server. If they aren't there, it won't find them. But you'd think if you asked the web site server for a "hidden" URL, it should give it to you directly (all expanded), not send back the "parent" page with the actual URL hidden inside it and collapsed / not exposed.

Walter Roberson
on 9 Feb 2013

The #togglecomments apparent URL is javascript. The contents are already on your system, and are expanded or collapsed by your browser. But something changed and now those sections are treated more like internal HTML than like something that can be acted on.

By analogy: you cannot search HTML <- comment -> style comments using your browser find function, even though the HTML is there.


Answer by Cedric Wannaz
on 31 Jan 2013
Edited by Cedric Wannaz
on 31 Jan 2013

As mentioned here, I think that having the possibility for the OP and high rep. members to add a top entry in the thread (like an answer but with a different design, e.g. greenish background or some frame) called "Synthesis" or "Conclusion", that would contain a synthesis/conclusion of the thread, would be interesting. This should be optional and worth no reward, so we have only valuable information, but highly prioritized by the search engine. The name of contributors should also be recorded in the sense that, at least to me, they are often a search criterion as important as keywords.

You can find an example of what I have in mind here, where I edited the question with a top part that synthesizes the thread: http://www.mathworks.com/matlabcentral/answers/59491-is-it-possible-to-set-watchdogs-memory-exec-time-in-matlab

The idea is really to allow people who care for that to bring added value to their threads. This could be especially useful for complicated threads, where finally a person is able to draw a conclusion out of dozens of answers/comments. The conclusion is really important information, yet it doesn't appear in the thread ultimately.

As a side note, I think that having the option not to prop. the thread at the top of the list when we edit the synthesis could be useful.. in my case, for example, I am pretty sure that people will start being tired about my "watchdog" thread if it comes back at the top of the list each time I add a coma to the text.. ;)

  0 Comments


Answer by Walter Roberson
on 29 Jun 2012

The time-stamps for the activities log and the flagged content log appear to be in GMT. This is inconsistent with the other time-stamps that the user sees and so can lead to some confusion.

Not a major problem ;-)

  0 Comments


Answer by Walter Roberson
on 29 Jun 2012

This original wish-list is now so slow to load that Firefox and Safari now time-out the javascript 3 to 6 times for me.

Randy Souza indicates "We're aware of this issue and are investigating it."

  5 Comments

Walter Roberson
on 19 Jul 2012

Javascript timeouts seem to have been eliminated as of last night, at least within Firefox.

Randy Souza
on 16 Aug 2012

We deployed a fix this evening (Aug 15 2012) that should eliminate the JavaScript warnings. Please post here or email me directly (<firstname>.<lastname>@mathworks.com) if you still see them.


Answer by Walter Roberson
on 29 Jun 2012
Edited by Walter Roberson
on 1 Jul 2012

The Link button is very convenient! But it is easy to end up clicking the link while it is being presented, which has the natural side effect of asking the browser to load that page... a bit of a nuisance as one is already there, and a Problem if the reason one was trying to copy the URL was that one was in the middle of composing a reply (bye-bye reply!)

I do not know if there is a solution to this that does not sacrifice functionality.

  0 Comments


Answer by Elige Grant
on 29 Jun 2012

Has someone already addressed the change from having our most recent answers listed first to (now) where our oldest answers are listed first when we click on our profile? I usually check this out to see if people had made comments to a question I answered, but (having answered ~180 questions, which is not a lot compared to the top contributors) I do not want to have to page through all my older answers to see if anything recent had updated.

I wish we had the ability to sort through my own old answers, too. Sometimes I want to view older answers before answering newer questions... so this could be helpful.

  3 Comments

Walter Roberson
on 29 Jun 2012

Hi, Elige,

As of yesterday afternoon, My Answers is now "most recently modified first"

Sorting of your Answers would be useful.

Also useful would be to be able to search through your own Answers specifically ("I know I wrote about this before!"). And once that is possible, to narrow a more general search to a specific contributor or set of contributors ("I know Jan wrote about this before!")

Sean de Wolski
on 2 Jul 2012

@Walter: Google hits it first page if I write my name usually. Also, it indexes comments, which is nice.

Walter Roberson
on 2 Jul 2012

When I posted the above, I had forgotten about the commented_by: and answered_by: prefixes that now exist for searches.


Answer by Walter Roberson
on 4 Jul 2012

The working area given to construct a comment (the built-in editor) is not very big. It is okay for short comments, but I find that in practice it ends up being common to post code in comments, code demonstrating how to apply the concepts of the answer or the comment stream, and in that situation the small size gets to be uncomfortable. I start looking for a drag handle to increase the size of the area...

  2 Comments

Jan Simon
on 4 Jul 2012

At least in my FireFox I do have such a drag handle in the comment input boxes. But without doubt a bigger default size would be really useful: Currently I increase the size manually every time I post a comment of more than 3 lines. While white space is lost space when reading, it is free space when writing. (A little bit exaggerated, I know)

Walter Roberson
on 30 Jul 2012

I am seeing the drag handle in the systems I using now. I cannot, however, increase more than another 5 or perhaps 6 lines.


Answer by Walter Roberson
on 7 Jul 2012

Editing of (your own?) Answer is not recognized as Activity for the purposes of listing the latest activity against each Question, nor for the purposes of determining the age sorting order for each Question.

Editing of an Answer is recorded in the Recent Activity list, though.

  2 Comments

Randy Souza
on 10 Jul 2012

This is intentional--edits to answers and comments do not affect the latest activity. This is based on the premise that edits to answers and comments are more likely to be grammar or typo fixes, while edits to questions are more likely to warrant new attention.

Another possible way to handle this is a "minor edit" checkbox, like the one in many wiki programs. Minor edits would not affect latest activity, other edits would. Thoughts?

Walter Roberson
on 11 Jul 2012

There are certainly some self-edits that are grammar or typo fixes. When, though, an Editor edits someone else's Answer, it is likely to be a reformat that might seriously affect people's ability to read the material.

The edits I do in the new Tags question are a mix: sometimes I'm just fixing up the text spacing, and sometimes I am adding new material. Likewise, edits in the How To Ask A Question topic are likely to be worth bringing to people's attention.

"Per", for one, adds a response and later comes back and edits significant new material into place. A few of the other posters have taking to using edits as a strategy.

Perhaps to some extent this matter is less serious now that Comments have full markup. Well, except for the "resource" topics where using Comments is not quite appropriate.


Answer by Walter Roberson
on 8 Jul 2012

The deleted Question http://www.mathworks.com/matlabcentral/answers/43031 is not giving the Page Not Found error. Instead it is giving the left frame and only the "contact us" line to the right.

At the moment, 43031 is the newest Question, and it was deleted (by the poster) before a newer Question was posted, and (at the moment) no newer Questions have been posted.

The Page Not Found is given for other appropriate cases.

The situation exists on both .com and .co.uk

  0 Comments


Answer by Walter Roberson
on 8 Jul 2012

There is a logical bug with accepting someone else's answer. The determination of whether that option appears does not depend upon when the answer was posted, only upon when the question was posted.

  1 Comment

Walter Roberson
on 9 Jul 2012

I see that the documentation says that it happens after 7 days of inactivity from the poster, which is consistent with the behavior we see, but my feeling is that after 7 days of inactivity would be better.


Answer by Ryan
on 9 Jul 2012

How about a link on the left hand navigation for FAQ and posts like Walter's on tags?

  2 Comments

Walter Roberson
on 9 Jul 2012

And "How to ask a question" and "How to use markup"

Ryan
on 11 Jul 2012

I'll say it for you, "Where to upload your images"


Answer by Jan Simon
on 12 Jul 2012
Edited by Jan Simon
on 19 Aug 2012

When I ask a question, I see a very funny red splosh before "Question" and "Body". Is this a skeletonized dot, a fractal or a red fountain? If there is only one of them, I'd had checked my monitor for pixel errors of flyspeck.

I'm not convinced that the title line should be called "question". In fact, "question" is misleading here. And while I do not understand the reason, why this title needs at least 4 words, titles with the allowed 250 characters are a secure indicator of a bad question.

  3 Comments

Walter Roberson
on 19 Jul 2012

Yesterday, someone posted a Question with the title

Fourier-cosine transform (very important!)

After I removed the "(very important!") it refused to save because that was only 3 words. So I had to go in and add some noise words, making it "Fourier-cosine transform problem". Without repeating in the title the formula that the user wanted transformed, there wasn't much else to say. I guess the user could have asked "How to do a fourier-cosine transform of this formula?" but is that really any better?

I am getting the impression that 3 words is enough.

I will also add that since the interface mods, there have been a lot more people trying to put the entire question in the title.

Image Analyst
on 20 Jul 2012

Looks like a red asterisk on my screen.

Walter Roberson
on 19 Aug 2012

Jan, does the browser scaling you were doing explain this issue as well?


Answer by Image Analyst
on 24 Aug 2012
Edited by Image Analyst
on 24 Aug 2012

Has anyone noticed that the counts for the "Contributors" have stalled? No numbers have been updated for several days now. I've been stuck at 607 accepted answers even though I see answers being accepted. Likewise, everyone else's numbers have not budged in several days.

And I say again that the bugs and the wishes should be in two separate lists instead of one long massive combined list.

  3 Comments

Jan Simon
on 24 Aug 2012

Or the bugs are fixed soon such that the corresponding messages can be deleted...

Sean de Wolski
on 24 Aug 2012

@IA, I have reported this.

Randy Souza
on 20 Sep 2012

This should be fixed as of Sep 19, 2012. Sorry for the inconvenience.


Answer by Albert Yam
on 10 Sep 2012

[From Lucas' answer]

About accepting a 'comment' that is in an answer box. It has more to do with the interface, in my opinion. Anyone coming from any other place, (intuitively) you see a chat box, you write there (like most forums), but to actually comment, you have to hit "Comment on this Answer".

Possibly change the 'Answer' text box, to "Answer this question" button, then open the text box or something like that. Which might alleviate the answering a comment thing.

[Image Analyst's suggestion]

Maybe you'd want it to recognize that the person submitting an answer is actually the original questionner and to ask them if they really want to answer and accept their own question or comment on another person's answer? That might not be a bad idea.

  0 Comments


Answer by Matt J
on 2 Oct 2012

Eliminate the "Answer Accepted" feature. Let reputation points be dictated entirely by votes.

The first problem with the "Answer Accepted" is that it puts the power to reward Answerers in the hands of the Questioners, where it doesn't belong. This incentivizes contributors to accomadate people looking for homework answers or to spoonfeed over-detailed solutions to people looking to do minimal work.

The second problem is, as others have mentioned, that a better Answer can always come along.

  12 Comments

Jan Simon
on 29 Apr 2013

In other forums, the admins select the editors manually based on skill and sympathy. They consider suggestions by other editors. I'd personally prefer this less automatical method, because the Answers forum has no way to refuse editor powers, when somebody is obviously not able to handle them professionally.

It is not difficult to fake the counting system. A user, I do not know, had voted for 700 of my answers during one weekend. Although I had full powers already, this did not change my privilegs, but it was strange. Fortunately the admins detected the peak of votes and remove it manually, after there was no plausible explanation for this. This means, that inspite of the automatic system for gaining privilegs, there is still a manual and human control in the background. And therefore I trust the TMW team to care for the working capacity of this forum sufficiently: Even with a modified reputation system, the main goal of this forum is to help users to solve their Matlab problems.

Matt J
on 29 Apr 2013

I'd personally prefer this less automatical method, because the Answers forum has no way to refuse editor powers

That seems to contradict your Comment from Oct. 3, Jan. If it would be better to take the power to award privileges out of the hands of non-administrators, then surely taking voter power away from Questioners would be a good step toward that, not to mention that it would cut down on doit4mes.

Jan Simon
on 29 Apr 2013

@Matt J: I do not see the contradiction. Although I'd prefer no direct correlation between points and privileges, I participate on the current system TMW has decided for. Obviously it works sufficiently at the moment.

I do not vote to provide a further step to gain privileges, but to mark useful answers and questions. An active and useful voting system need not be directly related to the highest privilege levels. But for the low privilege levels, a manual decision would be too time-costly with a comparable arbitrariness.


Answer by Randy Souza
on 13 Dec 2012

(This was suggested by Greg Heath in a separate question)

It should be possible to change and save the default sort order.

  0 Comments


Answer by G A
on 3 Jan 2013
Edited by G A
on 4 Jan 2013

I wish that questioner could have possibility to change his mind about his(her) acceptance decision. At least for a certain period.

  0 Comments


Answer by Cedric Wannaz
on 31 Jan 2013
Edited by Cedric Wannaz
on 31 Jan 2013

I think that if people were reminded (e.g. weekly) on a verified email that they have to come back to "close" their threads (or to actively indicate that they could still use help), more people would at least come back and see what was answered/commented. I am saying that, because I really suspect that many people actually find some way to do what they want after posting the question, and never come back to check their threads. All of you folks who have been active here for a long time, have roughly a 1/3 ratio of accepted answers, but when I look at the threads it seems that a significant amount of the answers that were not accepted are just a consequence of people not coming back..

Associated with this mechanism, there could be a special type of threads for open questions, in some sense a "discussion thread", like this one or any of those that should not have a particular answer chosen to be The answer.

Cheers,

Cedric

  0 Comments


Answer by Cedric Wannaz
on 2 Oct 2013

I think that it would be better to have the forum adding automatically a target attribute

 target="_blank"

to links present in threads, because we often want to keep the question/comment under our eyes when we click on such links.

  5 Comments

Cedric Wannaz
on 2 Oct 2013

@Walter: I know, but when it seems that we almost never want to open a link in the same window (which is often the case on forums where people answer questions), I think that it legitimately raises the question of whether it would be a good thing to have "open in new tab" implemented as a feature of the forum (by automatically adding a simple target attribute).

Image Analyst
on 2 Oct 2013

I just put in my vote!

Sean de Wolski
on 2 Oct 2013

I like it the way it is now.

Too_many_windows = clutter;

Answer by Walter Roberson
on 29 Jun 2012

Before the June 28, 2012 Answers changes, if one was editing and one highlighted text and clicked on the Code button, then after the operation was done, the selection was removed.

As of those changes, the selection goes away for a small number of seconds while the reformat is done, but then the selection color comes back, highlighting a wider but shorter area, not covering all of the height of the original selection but covering wider (possibly even some areas that have no input.)

  5 Comments

Randy Souza
on 19 Jul 2012

This selection bug should be fixed. After highlighting a section of text and clicking a button, the full text should be highlighted.

Walter Roberson
on 19 Jul 2012

Selection bug is not fixed, in my tests in Firefox. In case the solution required a reload, I quit the browser and re logged in, but that did not help.

I see the same symptoms as before.

Walter Roberson
on 20 Jul 2012

Selection bug might possibly have been fixed after I wrote the above.


Answer by Walter Roberson
on 29 Jun 2012

For consistency, Questions themselves should have the Link button. Yes, you can go up to your browser bar and copy the URL, but now that you have the buttons, people are going to start relying on it and will think less about copying from the browser bar.

  0 Comments


Answer by Walter Roberson
on 29 Jun 2012

The Answers section has developed the ad-hoc standard of labelling some Questions as "tutorials", when those Questions are intended as step-by-step information about solving a particular task. There is also the off-site FAQ that gets used a fair bit (especially about numeric precision, file name loops, and variable name loops.)

I am finding that there is a category of often-repeated information that does not really fall into either of the above, and I am not certain how to deal with that category. An example of the category is my series of comments indicating why one should always uses specific handles for graphics operations, and showing how to do so. I refer someone back to it every week or two -- often enough that it should probably be extracted into something independent. But it isn't really a FAQ and it isn't really a tutorial. "Frequently Referenced Advice" ?

Some of Image Analyst's material probably falls into the same category, such as his color segmentation demo.

Suggestions on how to handle this?

  1 Comment

Image Analyst
on 29 Jun 2012

I've been considering adding a "chapter" to the FAQ on image processing questions. For example I'd refer them to the Vision bibliography web site when they ask something like "How do I detect/recognize characters/license plates/cars/fruit/faces/fingerprints/edges/movement?" Or "How do I mask an image?" Or "How do I extract and save all frames from a video?"


Answer by Walter Roberson
on 29 Jun 2012

I think we should probably create a posting that discusses what Tags are and how and why to use them, and lists a number of the more common ones. I would include "doit4me" and similar content meta-tags, but I would also suggest that enough tags be included to allow people to see (for example) whether it is best to use "nn" or "ann" or "neural networks"


Answer by Walter Roberson
on 29 Jun 2012
Edited by Walter Roberson
on 29 Jun 2012

If one inserts a sufficiently long set of Tags in the tag editor (total number of characters being important rather than the number of tags), then eventually one of the tags will wrap down and move to the second line. One can tell that the tag will wrap because the current tag one is entering will stop being given in full, and will start scrolling in the area from the end of the previous tag.

Once one has a tag at the beginning of the second line, the number of characters that one can enter in the tag after that before this same kind of mini-scrolling occurs, is not determined by the available space to the end of the second line: instead the limit is at most the number of characters that were in the tag that wrapped down (and appears at the beginning of the line). For example if that tag happened to be 9 characters long, then the mini-scrolling would start after the 9th character of the tag one typed in afterwards.

In most of my tests, the limit was at most 1 character less than the previous tag, and occasionally even fewer were permitted; I only observed the maximum length once.

The field-scrolling at the end of the first line turns out to be a problem in itself. If the previously entered tags happen to take up most of the first line, then one can end up with just one or two characters available to enter the new tag in, with the entered tag being impossible to read during entry due to the scrolling in the narrow field.

  2 Comments

Walter Roberson
on 2 Jul 2012

There are also spacing oddities when editing existing tags.

Image Analyst
on 18 Dec 2013

I think this has gotten worse, not better. If there are lots of tags and you try to add a new one, you can only see a fraction of one letter as you type. You can't fully see what you typed until you type a comma or type the enter key. Has Randy noticed this bug? It seems like it just got worse about a couple of months ago.


Answer by Walter Roberson
on 30 Jun 2012

Interesting...

Start a Comment (does not apply to starting an Answer), and enter some text, and then Cancel the Comment. Then (before navigating off the page) click the same control to start a Comment in the same place. The partly-entered text will re-appear.

I did not expect this behavior, but I think my vote would be to retain it.

(I think I understand what is causing the behavior, as I had earlier looked at the HTML source of some Answers pages.)

  2 Comments

Randy Souza
on 2 Jul 2012

This is intentional behavior.

Walter Roberson
on 4 Jul 2012

I had a case today where I was editing a Question to format it, realized that I had accidently deleted parts of the material, Canceled the edit, clicked to edit again... and it brought back the munged version rather than the original.

Fortunately the part I had inadvertently deleted in my (unsaved) editing turned out to only be a single character. If necessary, I would have gone up to my browser toolbar and requested the page be refreshed, but I don't know that people would tend to think of that.

So the behavior is of mixed blessings.


Answer by Walter Roberson
on 30 Jun 2012

Sometimes what I want is a way to "import" a file (upload) into an edit field. Copying and pasting has different size limits for different operating systems (and different browsers), so I have ended up having to copy and paste in sections (sometimes a fair number of such cycles, for larger texts.)

Personally I feel that really this should be a browser feature. But unfortunately browsers don't seem to have it... :(

  0 Comments


Answer by Jan Simon
on 2 Jul 2012
Edited by Jan Simon
on 2 Jul 2012

One-line questions, answers or comments waste too much space, while the unused borders are lost.

  1 Comment

Walter Roberson
on 8 Jul 2012

Write

more

slowly

:)


Answer by Sean de Wolski
on 2 Jul 2012
Edited by Sean de Wolski
on 2 Jul 2012

There should be a grace period of a few minutes before something shows up as edited. For example, if you answer a question and then immediately fix a typo, it shouldn't show up as 'edited'.

And a pictographic example:

  2 Comments

Randy Souza
on 2 Jul 2012

Thanks Sean. Most wiki software has a "minor edit" checkbox for things like typos. Perhaps a similar option would help here...

Jan Simon
on 2 Jul 2012

Btw. why is this picture displayed so blurry? It seems like pixel-graphics are expanded by 2% before showing.


Answer by Walter Roberson
on 2 Jul 2012

Now that the Link Edit Flag Delete buttons are along the right hand side for Comments, I find myself looking in the same relative location for Answers.

When I look at the space needed at the top of Answers, I see one line to identify the originator and date, one line to identify the editor and date, and space for "Accept this Answer". This aggregate space in turn is almost exactly the same vertical space as is required for the profile picture. If the four buttons were moved to be linear like they are for Comments, then as long as something reasonable could be found for locating space for the "Votes", the it looks to me like the Answer and Comments space could be widened out to the width of the entire inner frame.

  0 Comments


Answer by Walter Roberson
on 4 Jul 2012

Editors need a way to locate Closed postings.

I've been wondering whether the automatic deletion of a previously-closed Question gets indicated in the activity log? I'm presuming that a re-open would get listed as an event.

  1 Comment

Walter Roberson
on 14 Aug 2012

Editors (at least) could use a way to see the reason that was given for the closure.

(Sean closed a Question a moment ago, right as I was contemplating what wording I would use to close it, so I wanted to see how he phrased it.)


Answer by Jan Simon
on 4 Jul 2012
Edited by Jan Simon
on 19 Aug 2012

Pixel graphics are expanded by some percent and smoothed, such that even screenshots look blurred. See above. They look much better in their original resolution.

[SOLVED] This is caused by zooming using Ctrl-+ in the browser.

  3 Comments

Randy Souza
on 10 Jul 2012

We don't do any (intentional) server-side or client-side manipulation of images. On my computer the image above is identical to the source image on imgur.

Remind me of your browser/operating system combination, please, and I'll see if I can replicate the blurriness.

Walter Roberson
on 11 Jul 2012

The image looks the same to me on the forum as when I look at it directly.

Jan Simon
on 19 Aug 2012

I got it: The fontsize of the forum is too small for my monitor resolution. Therefore I've expanded the view by Ctrl-+ in my Firefox browser. This increases the fontsize and the dimensions of some GUI elements, e.g. the useless gray border vanishes. But unfortunately this scales the pictures also.


Answer by Walter Roberson
on 7 Jul 2012

The recent activity list records people adding tags, but not people deleting tags.

  2 Comments

Walter Roberson
on 8 Jul 2012

Deleting of Questions also does not appear in the Recent Activity list.

Walter Roberson
on 8 Jul 2012

The Recent Activity list does not show any information about questions that have been deleted: previously shown information is removed.

I can see how this could happen if the data was being dynamically constructed from a database rather than being extracted from a log, but I'm a little uncomfortable with the resulting disappearance of information.


Answer by Walter Roberson
on 7 Jul 2012

The infrequently-used "Close" button is uncomfortably positioned between the more commonly used "Edit" and "Delete" buttons. I know there is conformation required for Close, but it's still an accident waiting to happen and slows down use while people double-check they are in the right position.

Scary

  0 Comments


Answer by Walter Roberson
on 9 Jul 2012

For Questions with sufficiently long titles, none of the title will be rendered.

Noticed on the following title (which had 28 characters remaining)

I hav tried to implement marker controlled watershed segmentation algorithm but the trees are not delineated correctly.plz help me with code.i hav to count no.of trees in a setellite image.is there any other alg to do this

  2 Comments

Randy Souza
on 10 Jul 2012

Where is the title not rendering (in the edit field, at the top of the page, in the URL, etc.)?

Walter Roberson
on 10 Jul 2012

Top of the page, the gold-ish coloured title.

That evening I also noticed some cases where the title sometimes did not render for some short titles, but would eventually render when the page was refreshed. It could be, then, that if I had tried more times than I did, I would have seen the title appear. I did, however, cross-check between the .com and the .co.uk site.


Answer by Walter Roberson
on 9 Jul 2012
San closed How to fix Non-constant expression or empty matrix
8 Jul 2012 at 15:40

That is, a poster with 0 Reputation was able to Close their own question ? I would not have guessed that would be possible.

(I have reopened the question since, as it had an interesting question.)

  2 Comments

Randy Souza
on 10 Jul 2012

Yes, you can close your own questions. You can also delete your own questions (but not after they receive an answer).

Walter Roberson
on 11 Jul 2012

I am not sure of the utility of being able to Close your own Question? If it has no Answers and you feel it is Not Appropriate or Unclear, you could just delete it.

Are users able to Close their own Question after it has received an Answer? Then considering how difficult it is to people to locate and review closed questions, does this become a mechanism for people to pretty much Delete their Question, as long as no-one with sufficient reputation happens to go through the activity log and get curious about it within 10 days?


Answer by Walter Roberson
on 19 Jul 2012
Edited by Walter Roberson
on 19 Jul 2012

Some URLs created today are not rendering properly. <URL1 URL2> is rendering as <URL2> with the > in black and the rest in blue. Prior URLs would render as URL2 in blue with no < and no >

For example, <http://www.mathworks.com>

The URLs do render properly in Preview.

  1 Comment

Randy Souza
on 30 Jul 2012

This is an idiosyncrasy that preserves backwards-compatibility with the publish syntax in MATLAB (if you create and publish a MATLAB file with the same markup you'll see the same behavior). We're considering changing the implementation so that <http://mathworks.com http://mathworks.com>; and <http://mathworks.com MathWorks> are consistent.


Answer by Elige Grant
on 20 Jul 2012

I kind of wish that when we scrolled through the answers to questions (especially when there are many "answers" like this one), that this:

would follow you down the page.

  3 Comments

Walter Roberson
on 20 Jul 2012

I am okay with fixed frames beside scrolling areas, but boxes that "move down" to be always visible make me nauseous (in a literal sense.)

Elige Grant
on 20 Jul 2012

Yeah... I guess so. Fix frames would definitely help reduce nausea... maybe this could be a user preference that one would select in their profile (with no fixed frames as the default):

Use fixed frames to display answers?   Yes    <No>
Walter Roberson
on 20 Jul 2012

To clarify my remark: if there is a fixed portion of a screen, and there is a vertical scrollable area, I have no difficulty. But last week I encountered a site which had an information box that scrolled along with the content, but as soon as you paused in the scrolling, the information box would scoot down to be in position again, so it was moving in the service of trying to stay still.


Answer by Walter Roberson
on 21 Jul 2012
Edited by Walter Roberson
on 21 Jul 2012

Expressions of the form (URL) with () immediately around and no < and > markup, are now being rendered in final output as (<URL>) but not being so rendered in preview.

For example if I enter (<http://www.mathwork.com>) which is '(' 'http://www.mathworks.com' ')' then the final output I get is the same as if I had entered (<http://www.mathworks.com>) with the < and > included.

This final output is not automatically detected as a link at the browser level (at least not Firefox). Most browsers automatically detect and internally convert URLs that have whitespace on both sides, such as http://www.mathworks.com which I have entered here with no markup at all but will appear as a link when rendered by most browsers.

Previously, (URL) was not transformed on output (and was usually not detected automatically by browsers.) Adding the < and > in the final output (but not in preview!) has no precedent here and doesn't help anything.

  1 Comment

Walter Roberson
on 22 Jul 2012

Also now transformed is (URL ) with no space between the '(' and the URL, but a space after the URL before the ')'. It is transformed to (<URL> ) with the < and > visually showing and a space before the ')'. This URL format is not detected automatically by browsers.

Remember, if you want an HTML link you need to translate to <A HREF="URL"> and not just to <URL>


Answer by Walter Roberson
on 24 Jul 2012

When there is a sufficiently long Tag already entered, and one requests to edit the tags, the long tag will extend past the right-hand boundary of the tag edit box.

When the tag edit box is not enabled, the display is better. I am not sure at the moment if it word-wraps or length wraps, but it does split into multiple lines.

Example tag (all as one single tag):

r2012a maple mupad symengine symbolic engine linsolve array arguments error

  0 Comments