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New to MATLAB?

Wish-list for MATLAB Answer sections.

Asked by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 8 Feb 2011
Latest activity Answered by per isakson

per isakson (view profile)

on 24 Sep 2014

This topic (which was not started by Mathworks) is for features you would like to see for this MATLAB Answers facility.

I suggest one wish per answer, so that people can vote for individual wishes.

6 Comments

Sean de Wolski

Sean de Wolski (view profile)

on 28 Jun 2012

I like Daniel's Idea about leaving this alone and starting a wish-list 2.0. I can't even load this whole page without IE8 dumping. Thus any new wishes from today I can't see. Here's my first:

-Once you hit a reputation of say 20, get rid of the "how to post an answer" comments that take up space.

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 28 Jun 2012

I have been thinking myself that we should start a volume 2. I would not delete anything here, though.

Ideally some of what is here should be moved to the new list. I did not want to just go ahead and create the new Answers, though, as that would not give proper credit to the people who originally proposed them.

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Products

No products are associated with this question.

146 Answers

Answer by Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

on 8 Feb 2011

It should be possible to mark up Comments.

10 Comments

Randy Souza

Randy Souza (view profile)

on 28 Jun 2012

We implemented this in a release on June 27, 2012 (I'm using it right now!).

Here's a blog post describing the major changes.

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 28 Jun 2012

Oh frabjous day!!

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 29 Jun 2012

Already I'm editing comments regularly. It's a very welcome upgrade!

Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

Answer by Royi Avital

Royi Avital (view profile)

on 9 Feb 2011

M Language Syntax Highlighting.

1 Comment

Amro

Amro (view profile)

on 24 Aug 2012

I've 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

Royi Avital

Royi Avital (view profile)

Answer by vish

vish (view profile)

on 8 Feb 2011

Notification when someone replies on a previously commented question or published.

6 Comments

Lindsay Coutinho on 24 Feb 2011

We have implemented a notification system for new answers to questions. Thank you for all the feedback, it helps us to prioritize what features the engineering team works on.

Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

on 24 Feb 2011

How do we use it?

Bob Li

Bob Li (view profile)

on 15 Oct 2011

Please, notification for comments on answers. Desperately need it.

Bob

vish

vish (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 8 Feb 2011
  • In the list of questions, each question should have a "last updated" date and time, where an update is the addition of an answer or a comment or the editing of any part of it.

One can get the list sorted by most recent update time, but without a time stamp, one has to look at the individual questions all through to determine whether there has been an update since the last time one looked at it.

4 Comments

Andy

Andy (view profile)

on 12 May 2011

It would also be useful to list the user name for the most recent update.

Image Analyst

Image Analyst (view profile)

on 28 Oct 2011

Looks like this finally got done in October 2011. Yay!

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 28 Jun 2012

And improved in today's update!

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 8 Feb 2011
  • "Next" and "Previous" buttons while reading questions, to move to the next or previous question without having to go back to the list of questions.

1 Comment

sheen

sheen (view profile)

on 21 May 2011

its really nice suggestion

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Matt Tearle

Matt Tearle (view profile)

on 11 Feb 2011

Include questions you've commented on (but not necessarily "answered") in "my answers". This way you can keep an eye on a question where you're asking for clarification or suchlike discussion.

Note: this would be rendered less important if we had notifications of some kind.

6 Comments

Ashish Uthama

Ashish Uthama (view profile)

on 6 Jun 2011

Search for your user name, and look for the 'Subscribe to this View' link (below the search text box, on the right).

Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

on 1 Jul 2011

I just noticed this answer. If I search for my user name, I get 12 hits.

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 21 Apr 2012

According to the help documentation, you can currently search using commented_by: tag

Matt Tearle

Matt Tearle (view profile)

Answer by Jan Simon

Jan Simon (view profile)

on 15 Feb 2011

Perhaps this is implemented already - I didn't ask a question yet: If you select an answer as accepted, can you change the selection afterwards, if a better answer is given?

6 Comments

Matt Fig

Matt Fig (view profile)

on 7 Apr 2011

I was going to nominate that one for the longest living dead question so far...

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 7 Apr 2011

The Night Of The Living Dead Question!
("Brains. We want Brains!")

Matt Tearle

Matt Tearle (view profile)

on 7 Apr 2011

Wow. I hadn't seen that one. That's...

Yeah.

Pity I can't vote twice.

Jan Simon

Jan Simon (view profile)

Answer by Kent Cabarle

Kent Cabarle (view profile)

on 9 Feb 2011

Posting a photo in a thread..

4 Comments

Kent Cabarle

Kent Cabarle (view profile)

on 9 Feb 2011

Yep. Anything related to the post, which may find useful for easier understanding and visualization.

Oleg Komarov

Oleg Komarov (view profile)

on 10 Feb 2011

You can do that with double passage, first by uploading a photo on say tinypic and then using the markup <<>>

Jan Simon

Jan Simon (view profile)

on 15 Feb 2011

And if tinypic stops its service, the corresponding question or answer becomes meaningless. Would it be possible to host the pictures on a TMW server?

Kent Cabarle

Kent Cabarle (view profile)

Answer by Matt Tearle

Matt Tearle (view profile)

on 16 Feb 2011

An automated email: "Dear [user], than you for using MATLAB Answers. Your question "[title]" now has [num_ans] answers. If any of these responses has helped you, please accept and/or up-vote them. If none of these answers has resolved your question, please provide further input to help guide others on how they can assist you"

This email should be sent after n days inactivity, at an exponentially increasing frequency;)

9 Comments

Matt Tearle

Matt Tearle (view profile)

on 28 Feb 2011

That's why we care so much: because the stakes are so low!

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 28 Feb 2011

@Matt: LOL

I have heard it said that in situations where large-scale distinctions between people are relatively rare, that people tend to become preoccupied with small-scale status symbols, such as parking privileges or office size.

Matt Tearle

Matt Tearle (view profile)

on 1 Mar 2011

Hah. Makes sense. I ripped off that line from somewhere -- it was describing university politics... I can completely see how the stuff I observed at universities was an affluent society's update to our primal urges to have our political enemies ax-murdered by corrupt government goons (after which you take their mud hut, beads, and lion skin loincloths).

Matt Tearle

Matt Tearle (view profile)

Answer by Matt Fig

Matt Fig (view profile)

on 2 Mar 2011

Answer folding.

Say there is a question which has 55 some-odd answers. I keep coming back to look and see if there is anything new, but since the answers move up and down with votes and other mechanisms, it soon gets exhausting. If I had the ability to fold answers I have read before - a choice that would stick between logins - then this process would be much easier.

I would like to be able to fold and unfold answers within a question. Perhaps a little star would appear next to the unfold button if there were new comments since I folded the question.

1 Comment

Jan Simon

Jan Simon (view profile)

on 3 Mar 2011

A very important improvement! It is nearly impossible to find the new answer or comment in a set of 55 answers and 100 comments. It seems like even a comment, which is deleted directly after the creation, changes the oder of the answers. Then it is even absolutely impossible to find the modifications...

Matt Fig

Matt Fig (view profile)

Answer by Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

on 8 Feb 2011

My Answers should display the number of votes for the answers, not the questions.

0 Comments

Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

Answer by Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

on 8 Feb 2011

Allow links to a specific answer, not just the question it answers.

9 Comments

Image Analyst

Image Analyst (view profile)

on 22 Jun 2012

You're right. I'm not sure why I didn't see it at first. Maybe there are too many non-tutorial answers tagged as tutorial when they shouldn't be because they're just regular answers saying how to do something specific, such as this one: http://www.mathworks.com/matlabcentral/answers/19062-fprintf-table or unanswered requests for a tutorial, such as this one http://www.mathworks.com/matlabcentral/answers/32107-manage-oceanoptics. I might untag some and get rid of the clutter so that only real tutorials are in there.

Randy Souza

Randy Souza (view profile)

on 28 Jun 2012

We made it easier to find these in a release on June 27, 2012. Click on the "Link" button next to an answer or above a comment.

Here's a blog post describing the major changes.

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 28 Jun 2012

Nice, Randy!

Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

Answer by Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

on 11 Feb 2011

The accept button should be further away from Comment on this answer, and it should be possible to undo it - at least for a grace period of a few minutes.

3 Comments

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 25 Feb 2011

Looks like this has been implemented in the last couple of minutes!

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 25 Feb 2011

The further-away part, anyhow.

Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

on 28 Feb 2011

It's a start!

Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 9 Mar 2011

Andrew mentioned as part of a previous suggestion that My Answers should include a search box. The same should also hold true when viewing someone's profile.

Go to my Answers and try to find something specific in there. With over 700 Answers logged already, good luck in finding what you are looking for...

The situation would not be as bad if the existing search box supported a tag for author search (and if author names were unique.)

8 Comments

Helen Chen

Helen Chen (view profile)

on 18 Aug 2011

Hi Matt - Yes, I did notice. Randy is working on this one. :-)

Image Analyst

Image Analyst (view profile)

on 18 Aug 2011

But it took 21 days to see Matt's post. ;-) There has to be a better/faster way to find new posts since last time you looked at a post.

Helen Chen

Helen Chen (view profile)

on 22 Sep 2011

As of last night, when you look at My Answers, it is now sorting by most recent. Enjoy!

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Oleg Komarov

Oleg Komarov (view profile)

on 8 Feb 2011

We wanna see our reputation scores, let the challenge begin!

Smt like a Users list by score under the Home link (upper left corner)

Oleg

3 Comments

Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

on 8 Feb 2011

Bring it on.

Lindsay Coutinho on 24 Feb 2011

The Contributors list has just been added, it's located under Home link. Check it out: http://www.mathworks.com/matlabcentral/answers/contributors . Keep the feedback coming!

Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

on 26 Feb 2011

Very nice! Sorry, Oleg - it looks like your program has become obsolete.

Oleg Komarov

Oleg Komarov (view profile)

Answer by Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

on 14 Feb 2011

Adding a button for inserting images. Even though instructions for adding an image can be found in Markup help, more than one user has been unaware that it could be done (including one on this page!).

1 Comment

Jan Simon

Jan Simon (view profile)

on 24 Mar 2012

And store the images on a MathWorks server. The other hosters will delete the images in the near or far future and then the corresponding question will become meaningless.

Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

Answer by Jiro Doke

Jiro Doke (view profile)

on 16 Feb 2011

A way to automatically scroll to the most recent answer/comment/edit. For example, this question has many, many answers and comments. But I don't know where the most recent stuff is. Perhaps there should be a "go to next recent content" button on the page, that takes me to different sections.

9 Comments

Randy Souza

Randy Souza (view profile)

on 28 Jun 2012

This is a regression--we will change it back to votes-first soon.

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 28 Jun 2012

Ah, I notice that the recent activity information at the top of the Question display, is now a direct link to that activity. That helps for the very most recent change, but not so much if multiple changes have been made.

Randy Souza

Randy Souza (view profile)

on 28 Jun 2012

The sorting regression is fixed--answers should now display with the accepted answer first, then the remaining answers sorted by number of votes (high-to-low) then date/time asked (least-to-most recent)

Jiro Doke

Jiro Doke (view profile)

Answer by Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

on 16 Mar 2011

Walter mentioned a "Best of Answers" area. A more flexible alternative would be an "Add to my favorites" button, so we can each keep a list of answers that we find really useful.

Of course, we can always bookmark them in our browser, but it would be good to keep them in the same environment as our personal questions and answers.

3 Comments

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 16 Mar 2011

That's an interesting idea, Andrew.

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 16 Mar 2011

Though the Best of Answers would be aimed more at the incoming people who are willing to do *some* searching but would get lost in the unstructured morass that exists now.

Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

on 17 Mar 2011

I get lost in the morass too. Recently I spent fifteen minutes trying to find a particular answer and gave up.

Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

Answer by Matt Fig

Matt Fig (view profile)

on 8 Jun 2011

A "Views" counter for the questions.

0 Comments

Matt Fig

Matt Fig (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 9 Feb 2011

When one is being shown a list of Questions, it would be nice if hovering over a question link would show you a brief summary (e.g., first 100-ish characters) of the question statement. This would make it faster for people to take a quick look to see whether the question was interesting, or a quick reminder of exactly which question it was.

1 Comment

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 21 Apr 2012

Still on my wish-list! Was wanting this again about 2 days ago...

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Oleg Komarov

Oleg Komarov (view profile)

on 12 Feb 2011
  1. More meta info about the contributors: num. of votes given, num. of comments...
  2. Keep the meta info separate from answers/questions: try to load Walter's profile...it takes already a lot of time and if he keeps at this rythm in a year it won't be possible to load it at all...

I'm trying to think of long run stable way to query the site to have a score of the contributors. You can see an attempt in User reputation: post here to get into the list. It already takes 6 minutes to retrieve that info.

In general, it would be nicer if the list of the contributors and the meta info was available at one shot (and basically this is what I'm trying to reproduce)

EDIT

TMW team implemented a page with the metascores: http://www.mathworks.com/matlabcentral/answers/contributors

Please refer to it and congrats to the team!

0 Comments

Oleg Komarov

Oleg Komarov (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 7 Apr 2011

Somewhere or other in the documentation, we need a note saying plainly that when a Title is edited, the effect is to create a URL which aliases the old one. For example, I had

 http:.../4321-j-random-title

and after I renamed it, that continued to be valid in addition to the new name

http:.../4321-john-q-title

This behavior of keeping the old name accessible can be important because URLs may have been created linking to the old name. This is a good feature; documenting it would save people like me from having to worry about such things.

2 Comments

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 19 May 2011

Interesting... the behavior is not quite what I thought it was. It is not that aliases are created, but rather that as long as the number and dash are there, followed by any non-meta character (e.g., excluding '?'), then the match will be found. In the above example, http:.../4321-* would work just as well.

This is, incidentally, a way to link to a question by number without having to remember or copy/paste the entire title.

Randy Souza

Randy Souza (view profile)

on 28 Jun 2012

Technically, the dash is not needed either. So, for example, you can get to this question via:

http://www.mathworks.com/matlabcentral/answers/994

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Matt Tearle

Matt Tearle (view profile)

on 24 May 2011

Some way to prevent questions being deleted without a good reason!

I'm getting really annoyed with people whose response to your help is to disappear and take with them both their question and your response to it. It's happened more than once to me, and not necessarily questions where the poster was doing something dumb -- perfectly normal question, valid answer(s), then... floop! It's gone.

2 Comments

Daniel

Daniel (view profile)

on 17 Oct 2011

What really upsets me about a question that I have answered being deleted is I never can remember who asked the question. My feeling is if you are going to delete a question that I have answered, then I am not going to answer any of your other questions (at least until I think you have learned better).

Randy Souza

Randy Souza (view profile)

on 28 Jun 2012

We implemented a partial constraint on this behavior in a release on June 27, 2012. You can no longer delete your own question once someone has answered it.

Here's a blog post describing the major changes.

Matt Tearle

Matt Tearle (view profile)

Answer by Sean de Wolski

Sean de Wolski (view profile)

on 8 Jun 2011

A "How many users are online" string somewhere on the home page.

5 Comments

Matt Fig

Matt Fig (view profile)

on 8 Jun 2011

How about how many people are logged on to MATLAB central? That would at least give an approximation...

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 8 Jun 2011

"logged on to MATLAB centeral" is the same thing as "authenticated to the web site" that I wrote about.

Matt Fig

Matt Fig (view profile)

on 8 Jun 2011

Oh, o.k. You confused me with your technical speak. ;-)

Sean de Wolski

Sean de Wolski (view profile)

Answer by Paulo Silva

Paulo Silva (view profile)

on 18 Jul 2011

I would like to have a way to see when someone's account was created and how many questions that person deleted (maybe even the names of the questions deleted for those who are editors), this is because I clearly remember having answered several questions from someone but all those questions were deleted and the very same person posted a new question yesterday, I replied and that person exhibited the same old behaviour that triggered my memory, he/she didn't even look at the links I provided and asked something that isn't MATLAB related, I didn't answer the specific question because I would waste my time, this is MATLAB Answers not Control Engineering Answers.

6 Comments

Sean de Wolski

Sean de Wolski (view profile)

on 18 Jul 2011

Or at least answered by someone else. If you want to delete a question you answered yourself, I don't really see an issue.

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 19 Jul 2011

Although it is true that in theory this forum is about MATLAB, I find that in practice there are a lot of more questions about theory posed, or questions about theory that are disguised as MATLAB questions.

A fair bit of the time, "How do I do {something} in MATLAB" really means "I barely know what {something} is, but I have to implement it in MATLAB: how do I do that, preferably without ever having to learn anything about what the {something} really means or the mathematics behind it?"

I do admit that is the cynical view from having dealt with large number of students; I _do_ see people (including some of the students) who are interested in their topic, but are lacking the background in it and are also perhaps weak on their research skills (or research initiative) to investigate before trying to implement.

Randy Souza

Randy Souza (view profile)

on 28 Jun 2012

We implemented "no delete if already answered" in a release on June 27, 2012. Click on the "Link" button next to an answer or above a comment.

Here's a blog post describing the major changes.

Paulo Silva

Paulo Silva (view profile)

Answer by Oliver Woodford

Oliver Woodford (view profile)

on 20 Jul 2011

Many questions get asked again and again. Why? Because people are not searching for previous answers before asking questions.

Stackoverflow suggests some similar questions that have already been asked when people are typing in their questions. It's therefore easy for them to see that the questions already exist.

This system also relies on good questions being voted up, so they appear at the top of the list. I have asked several (dare I say) well-worded questions (and usually answered them well too), with a view to providing a resource for people to refer to. This effort is wasted by the questions and answers receiving no votes, and the fact that people never search for them anyway.

So, TMW please implement question suggestions like Stackoverflow, and regular users please vote for well-worded questions.

1 Comment

K E

K E (view profile)

on 9 Feb 2012

Just curious, why is Matlab answers separate from Stackoverflow? I would like to combine all my reputation points (low as they are) in one place.

Oliver Woodford

Oliver Woodford (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 8 Feb 2011
  • Whether Preview is automatic or manual (or the switch-over point) should be a user preference.

7 Comments

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 24 Feb 2011

Jan indicated yesterday in another thread that he is getting quite badly hit by the slow speed of the automatic preview.

Randy Souza

Randy Souza (view profile)

on 28 Jun 2012

We added a disable/enable button for the preview in a release on June 27, 2012.

Here's a blog post describing the major changes.

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 28 Jun 2012

Hurrah!

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 8 Feb 2011
  • For the benefit of those of us that like to do some infrastructure maintenance, it would be appreciated if there was a way to select questions that had no tag, or that had no Product . Especially in conjunction with the "next question" button that I proposed, this would make it much easier to step through postings adding appropriate meta information.

0 Comments

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Igor

Igor (view profile)

on 11 Feb 2011

Perhaps,

to group questions on Category (and create category list)

keywords do not enough

2 Comments

Jan Simon

Jan Simon (view profile)

on 24 Feb 2011

This would be a great advantage. I've never worked with Simulink, so it is more efficient not to read Simulink questions.

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 12 Apr 2011

Looks like this has been at least partly implemented.

Igor

Igor (view profile)

Answer by George Evers

George Evers (view profile)

on 15 Feb 2011

I like the idea of checking for relevant answers before posting a new question. As mentioned at [1], neural nets would be one vehicle for accomplishing this; alternatively, consider the following routine, for which x and y could be optimized.

Maintain a database of URL's, keywords, and tags for existing articles, threads, and questions.
For each new question title proposed:
* Define X as the set of all words of length > x from the user's proposed title.
* Search the database for articles/threads/questions whose keywords and tags match y% of the members of X.
* Display "Do any of the following answer your question?"
* Display best matches.

Implementing a quality search procedure now could prevent unnecessary clutter and avoid the difficulty of deciding whose answers to delete should cleanup otherwise potentially become necessary. This would help answerers by politely encouraging common sense questioning practices with which to prevent redundant and unnecessary questions, and users would feel more intelligently assisted and locate answers more quickly.

The dual objectives would be time-efficient search and high-quality user feedback. Search time might be reduced by categorizing questions and searching only within relevant categories. And recommendation quality could be optimized by using a modern optimizer to maximize the recommendation success rate per 100 questions on the 2D search space defined by x and y [2].

  1. http://www.mathworks.com/matlabcentral/newsreader/view_thread/301724#818324
  2. http://www.georgeevers.org/HESTEC_poster.jpg
 Regards,
 George
 http://www.georgeevers.org

5 Comments

Jiro Doke

Jiro Doke (view profile)

on 16 Feb 2011

George, I like this idea a lot. This happens quite a bit in CSSM where people *may* search for things, but ultimately end up posting his/her own question (which happens to be the same as 10 other questions). I think the interface can be changed to encourage the "search first" behavior.

Right now, there is a Search bar where you can type in keywords. There's also a separate "Ask a Question" button. The first problem is that some people will always go straight to "Ask a Question". Having two separate interfaces (search and ask) gives the user options, and it becomes hard to enforce the behavior.

Now once a user asks a question, we could do something that you suggest which is to give some recommendations on existing questions. But we run into the issue that Walter mentions, which is that some people don't provide meaningful titles. Some titles have nothing to do with what they actually ask.

So what I think is that they should get rid of the "Ask a Question" button. There should only be an edit window that says "What is your question?". With that wording (as opposed to "Search MATLAB Answers"), people would hopefully ask the question using natural spoken grammar. They certainly won't type "help!" or "Plz give me code!" because that's not a question. It would force users to type descriptive questions. Based on that question, the system can go through and search the Answers database to come up with some candidates that may be relevant to the asked question. This part is the same as your idea. If the user doesn't see anything relevant, then he/she can go ahead and fill in the rest of the question (description, tags, products).

Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

on 19 Feb 2011

Walter's experience with tags is exactly why I think that it would be better to just use Google for searching MATLAB Answers (see my separate answer). Why try to reinvent the wheel when someone else does it so much better? This would be quite consistent with many of the other proposals in this discussion.

George Evers

George Evers (view profile)

Answer by Jan Simon

Jan Simon (view profile)

on 15 Feb 2011

I do not like to be tracked by Google-Analytics. In Germany it is currently checked, if this service conflictes with the laws for data protection.

It is obvious that participating in a newsgroup is not very private at all. Nevertheless I see no reason to let Google know my IP, such that they can check if I've opened a browser window for Ebay or Amazon, while I'm posting at MATLAB Answers. Or does anyone needs informations like this: "People who have bought this book have been interested in these questions also: ..."

So my wish is: Disable tracking by Google-Analytics.

2 Comments

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 24 Feb 2011

With Firefox and the Abine and NoScript extensions, I have enough control to disable cookies on a site by site basis.

On the other hand, unless I change my username, there isn't much that can be done about the fact that google is going to index the 'Walter Roberson' author against the content I write -- not without disallowing google from indexing the site, which would have many disadvantages.

Jan Simon

Jan Simon (view profile)

on 25 Feb 2011

Google-Analytics is an online service, which stores your IP-address. This is another quality than indexing the text you've posted here. If you browse through Ebay or other web sites controlled by GA, Google has enough information to perform the cross-correlations. If you browse this page from your IPhone with enabled IPv6 and did not enable the privacy control, Google knows even your unique MAC address.
I'm using NoScript also - otherwise it is hard to register that GA scans the users of MATLAB Answers.

Jan Simon

Jan Simon (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 15 Feb 2011

Documentation (and on-line help) of the search capabilities.

Known but not documented:

  • string to be searched for in the body
  • tag:"tag string"
  • product:"product string"

Thought I saw:

  • a prefix for searching by author. I can't reproduce this, not through author:"author name", not through author:contributornumber

Possibly it was in the newsgroup that I saw this supported.

Unknown and not documented:

  • any other supported prefixes
  • whether terms are phrases or "and" or "or", or if words not found at all are silently dropped and a search done on the rest.
  • whether terms are case sensitive -- or can be made to be
  • whether there is a spelling-correction pre-pass on the search
  • whether comments are searched
  • whether the search is on the unrendered or rendered form -- in particular, are urls themselves searched for matches

9 Comments

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 21 Jun 2011

Search term stemming is used! For example if you search on "computability" you will find "computes" and "computing". Common suffixes are stripped off of the input text when the index is generated, and also stripped off of the search terms when a search is done, and matches are determined.

It is _not_ a simple case of matching prefixes. For example if one searches on "compu" then one will find exactly one posting (well other than this one): it is a posting in which someone mistyped "computing" as "compuing". Strip off the common suffix "ing" and "compu" becomes a recognized search term...

K E

K E (view profile)

on 22 Mar 2012

How do I search for a phrase such as "Simulink debugger"? How do I require that two words both appear in an answer, such as "Simulink" and "optimization"? This is not covered in the documentation (http://www.mathworks.com/matlabcentral/about/answers/). I get better results searching the whole web with Google than using the Answers search window.

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 22 Mar 2012

"simulink and debugger"

but without the quotes seems to be the current method.

I did test with quotes as well; if I remember correctly I got results that I could not characterize at the time.

ps: dang, took me several minutes of searching to find this update!

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Matt Fig

Matt Fig (view profile)

on 18 Feb 2011

Answer numbers. If we can't link to a certain answer within a question, at least give the ability to link to the question and say, "See answer 12." The numbers could be fixed even if the questions move up and down, so we have two ways of tracking things.

2 Comments

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 25 Feb 2011

See also
http://www.mathworks.com/matlabcentral/answers/994-wish-list-for-matlab-answer-sections#comment_3868

Image Analyst

Image Analyst (view profile)

on 17 Jun 2012

Walter - nothing happens when I click on your link.

Matt, I heartily agree. I almost added this myself until I decided to search this page for "number" and found your suggestion was already in here. I was going to say this in a new "Answer":

I think the answers should be numbered, so that when someone wants to refer to a particular posting it can be done easily. For example "That suggestion has already been noted. See Answers #2, #16, and #42." The number should be retained when the "Accepted" answer moves to the top of the Answer list, or else it would mess up everyone who referred to a number in their answer.

Matt Fig

Matt Fig (view profile)

Answer by Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

on 19 Feb 2011

There should be a way of uploading a data file so that people can retrieve it but it doesn't take up a lot of space on the display. Sometimes we just can't figure out what the problem is without the data (as, for example, with question 1504).

2 Comments

Oleg Komarov

Oleg Komarov (view profile)

on 20 Feb 2011

It should be possible to add size-capped mat files!

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 26 May 2011

Some of the upload sites people are using are aggravating to free downloaders.

easy-share for example: nags you to join, and if you choose to download for free, makes you wait 30+ seconds before you can do the download. And if you are like me and have javascript disabled for most sites (e.g. via NoScript) and have to turn it on to download from there, you'll have another 15 seconds of imposed delay before it even gives you the chance to trigger the download; multiply by 3 because there turn out to be multiple site's scripts referenced there...

Anyhow, the current ad-hoc list of download sites is in http://www.mathworks.com/matlabcentral/answers/7924-where-can-i-upload-images-and-files-for-use-on-matlab-answers

Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 25 Feb 2011

When there is a problem posting (a comment or answer), currently the content of what was to be posted is lost; going back from the error page refreshes to the current content without the attempted addition. This can be a major time waste if one has posted a long reply :(

Wish list: that when an error page is given, that the attempted text be made available so that the user can at least copy it and retry or save it for later submission.

4 Comments

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 8 Jun 2011

I would call this a bug, at least for the case where something goes wrong with the processing. The case where one is replying to something that got deleted is perhaps not a bug, but if I've put a bunch of time in to constructing a reply, losing it can sure be annoying -- e.g., I might want to save what I wrote for future needs, or might want to email what I wrote, or perhaps I was writing into a posting that got deleted because it was a duplicate, or perhaps I was writing into a posting that the original poster deleted without good reason and I might be wanting to post the material to the newest incarnation of the poster's question.

Sean de Wolski

Sean de Wolski (view profile)

on 17 Oct 2011

If the OP deletes a question while a reply is being written an error page shows up when the answer is submitted. I would like the error page to contain the text that was just written so it could be copied to a text file in case the OP reposts the question.

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 17 Oct 2011

Yup, exactly what I was complaining about!

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Jan Simon

Jan Simon (view profile)

on 28 Feb 2011

Dear community! Please use the chance to vote questions and answers exhaustively to increase the total quality of MATLAB Answers.

A guideline for voting and choosing an accepted answer would be helpful. E.g.:

Vote a question, if it is helpful for others and contains most likely all necessary information to solve the problem - even if your personal skill does not allow you to answer.

Or:

Vote a question, if you think, that reading it and its answers help to improve the personal programming skills.

Then a question with many votes but no answer gets very attractive for advanced programmers, questions with many votes and an accepted answer becomes attractive for beginners, while questions without a vote after 4 days are obvioulsy irrelevant.

1 Comment

Oleg Komarov

Oleg Komarov (view profile)

on 2 Mar 2011

+1

Jan Simon

Jan Simon (view profile)

Answer by Matt Fig

Matt Fig (view profile)

on 2 Mar 2011

Let me put blank lines in my responses!

If I type a line that doesn't go all the way to the end of the window to wrap automatically, then hit return to enter another line, the second line is appended to the first as if I had never hit return. Also, I cannot put multiple blank lines in without doing this fake dot

.

.

.

thing. (dot,return-return; dot,return-return) This feature would be useful for making a space in order to draw attention to an edit to an answer.

2 Comments

Oleg Komarov

Oleg Komarov (view profile)

on 2 Mar 2011

+1

Jan Simon

Jan Simon (view profile)

on 3 Mar 2011

I have a small screen and need a large font size. Such empty lines do *not* catch my attention, but force me to scroll vertically during reading. A picture, bold font or the picture of a well-known author are much better to catch the attention.

Matt Fig

Matt Fig (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 3 Mar 2011

When constructing a comment or editing an answer (but not in initially submitting an answer!), if you have a line that begins and ends with a double-quote, then everything before the line and anything after the line are usually (but not always) lost, along with the double-quotes.

I had an example in my previous edition of this Answer, but when I edited the Answer to add more info, that line became the only thing left of the Answer :(

Wish: fix this behaviour.

7 Comments

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 21 Jun 2011

:whimper:

I had another Comment trashed today where I input a quoted string result :(

Randy Souza

Randy Souza (view profile)

on 30 Jun 2011

This should be fixed as of June 28, 2011

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 1 Jul 2011

Thank you!!!

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Jan Simon

Jan Simon (view profile)

on 3 Mar 2011

Unique user names would be helpful to recognizewho has written a comment or question.

Some days ago I've read a comment by "Matt" and answered it by citing another thread, where I had discussed with "Matt" before. But there are 7 Matt's at the moment. By accident I've moved the mouse over the name link and have seen "Reputation: 0". This was about 300 less than expected.

Any ideas how this could be improved?

9 Comments

Jan Simon

Jan Simon (view profile)

on 4 Mar 2011

What might happen, if I change my name to "Walter Roberson" and copy his photo?! Sabotage is a bit to0 easy.

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 27 May 2011

I'm wondering what would happen if I changed my username to something like </HTML> or </FORM> ;-)

Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

on 28 May 2011

Twelve Answers models. Seven are known. Four live in secret. One will be revealed.

Jan Simon

Jan Simon (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 19 Apr 2011

Wish: an editorial function to move an Answer to be a Comment on a different answer (or even the question itself), while preserving appropriate ownership. With any Comments to the Answer to be moved as well to become additional Comments.

Questioners post their responses as new Answers relatively often; cleaning up after that by copy-and-past is tedious and error-prone and doesn't preserve ownership.

Bonus Wish: move a Comment to become an Answer, preserving ownership and allowing appropriate credit. Especially during back-and-forths to determine what is being asked, key suggestions end up being given in Comments.

1 Comment

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 26 Apr 2011

Double Bonus Wish: move an Answer or Comment to become a new Question, preserving ownership etc..

Reason: it is not uncommon for people to ask respond with questions semi-related to an existing post, but which really should have their own post. (Hmmm, an automatic "Reference:" line would be nice too...)

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Oleg Komarov

Oleg Komarov (view profile)

on 25 Apr 2011

A tutorial section for posts like the following: http://www.mathworks.com/matlabcentral/answers/6200-how-to-ask-a-question

1 Comment

Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

on 26 Apr 2011

I like your approach to this. I had thought of creating a similar page, but the big problem is keeping the page visible for new users. A tutorial section might do that.

Oleg Komarov

Oleg Komarov (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 26 May 2011

Being able to revoke an Accept "at least for a grace period" was suggested earlier.

I would suggest that Editors be able to revoke Accept. It is not uncommon for a user to Accept much too early. Sometimes too the Accept looked reasonable at the time, but the user then either finds the solution to be unusable in the situation, or has additional related questions that are easier to deal with in the existing Question than in a new Question.

0 Comments

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 27 May 2011

A way to get actual time-stamps for items instead of "about 3 months" and so on. For the purposes I am thinking of, having the time-stamps show up in the HTML but not visible would probably do (but an option to see them clearly would be nice.)

3 Comments

Jan Simon

Jan Simon (view profile)

on 27 May 2011

And sort the answers according to the date on demand. E.g. it will be hard to find this answer after I've voted for it, because it will vanish in the heap of the other 77 answers. Sorry.

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 27 May 2011

Quite true, Jan. I had to go looking carefully for new responses in order to see yours.

If I recall correctly, Randy already termed the random reshuffling of Answers to be a bug. The sorting by votes is not a bug, though, so if something newish gets voted up in a long list then it would be easy to miss.

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 8 Jun 2011

random reshuffling of Answers is a bug.

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Matt Fig

Matt Fig (view profile)

on 8 Jun 2011

I am adding this again because it is REALLY, VERY annoying!

We should be able to put quotes around a paragraph or sentence and have it show up as such!

Right now if you write a big long response of several paragraphs and code, then put one little sentence at the end on its own line and in quotes, everything you wrote will be wiped out and only the line in quotes will show up - and without the quotes. When you then click on Edit, hoping that somehow your work will have been saved and just not shown, you find it is gone...

This is utterly ridiculous! At least add a button so that we can highlight a section in the answer and put it in quotes...

3 Comments

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 8 Jun 2011

I'm pretty sure the apostrophe / double-quote behavior is a processing bug rather than a deliberate design... but surely it could be fixed!

And yes, I did encounter this problem again the other day. Fortunately I had Lazarus installed and was able to recover the text that way and edit it.

Helen Chen

Helen Chen (view profile)

on 8 Jun 2011

Matt and Walter - I have logged a bug report for this. We'll look into why this is happening.

Matt Fig

Matt Fig (view profile)

on 8 Jun 2011

Thanks Helen!

Matt Fig

Matt Fig (view profile)

Answer by Daniel

Daniel (view profile)

on 6 Aug 2011

Free MATLAB swag for frequent contributors. While striving to get added to http://www.mathworks.com/matlabcentral/answers/1058-contributors-metainfo-reputation-and-more might be enough motivation, I think free stuff would be more motivating.

Maybe they could start small with a MATLAB answers sticker (not just the standard MATLAB sticker, but a customized one to reflect the contributions to answers). then as you contribute more you could get a mug, tee-shirt, USB key, etc.

3 Comments

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 6 Aug 2011

I've started a line of "doit4me" clothing ;-)

Jan Simon

Jan Simon (view profile)

on 26 Aug 2011

@Walter: And for the majority of users a "WalterdidIt4me" collection.

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 29 Aug 2011

In a previous life, the expression used was "I've been waltered"! (Note: this was not related at all to the much later use of the expression in a tractor forum.)

Daniel

Daniel (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 8 Feb 2011
  • The very stark no-frills-at-all interface for editing an Answer one has given, must go!

Possibly it does not come up every time, but when it does, it is a page with just a short edit box with the text in the top left and a Submit and Cancel button -- not even anything telling you what the page is about.

5 Comments

Matt Fig

Matt Fig (view profile)

on 8 Feb 2011

I find that hitting ctrl+F5 often refreshes this little annoying box away.

Jan Simon

Jan Simon (view profile)

on 9 Feb 2011

This box appears, if "Comment on tis answer" or "Add an answer" is activated before the question page was loaded completely as indicated by the progressbar of the browser.

Jan Simon

Jan Simon (view profile)

on 24 Feb 2011

This box has no additional Preview box! So it is ugly, but useful currently.

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Matt Fig

Matt Fig (view profile)

on 8 Feb 2011

Alright I will say it. I know they are stupid and annoying, and that we are all professionals here, but sometimes I like those little emoticons. I often see people using: ;) or :-), how about the real deals? The rollseyes one could come in handy.

8 Comments

Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

on 8 Feb 2011

;)

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 8 Feb 2011

By the way, testing for whitespace or beginning of line before :) would eliminate a lot of the false positives. Lots of code of the form A(K,:) but probably relatively little of the form A(K, :) . And emoticons could be disabled for identified code sections.

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 10 Feb 2011

Emoticons can be imported as images using the << >> markup in answers. But that markup does have the restriction of having to be the only thing in the paragraph (not just on the line.)

Matt Fig

Matt Fig (view profile)

Answer by Matt Fig

Matt Fig (view profile)

on 10 Feb 2011

I know it is not realistic, but man would I love it!

A filter that wouldn't let an OP post a question with TXT type in it.

No plz. (Please)

No tx. (Thanks)

No hlp. (Help)

(Feeling cranky...)

10 Comments

Matt Fig

Matt Fig (view profile)

on 12 Apr 2011

If you have the time, go for it (please)! I believe that as long as you aren't changing the meaning of a question, it is o.k. for you to make clarifying alterations - correcting poor English, of which txt-speak is a part, is a service to everyone.

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 13 May 2011

How long to ramp up your campaign, Matt?

Matt Fig

Matt Fig (view profile)

on 13 May 2011

Haha! Today Duplicates, tmro t wrld.

Matt Fig

Matt Fig (view profile)

Answer by Matt Tearle

Matt Tearle (view profile)

on 13 Feb 2011

Has anyone else been tripped up by the auto-folded comments? I'd personally prefer expanded by default, or at least a higher threshold.

1 Comment

Oliver Woodford

Oliver Woodford (view profile)

on 19 Feb 2011

It can make some comments appear nonsensical.

Matt Tearle

Matt Tearle (view profile)

Answer by Cris Luengo

Cris Luengo (view profile)

on 16 Feb 2011

I want to be able to down-vote questions and answers. I understand the current "positive reinforcement" philosophy, but sometimes it is better to be able to delete stuff that people really don't like (e.g. at -5 points).

2 Comments

Jan Simon

Jan Simon (view profile)

on 3 Mar 2011

I suggested another strategy elsewhere: Massive positive voting would have the same effect, because a missing vote mutliplied by the number of days since posting have the same meaning as a negatrive vote.

Oliver Woodford

Oliver Woodford (view profile)

on 20 Jul 2011

Massive positive voting just isn't happening. I've asked some very good questions, because I know they get asked all the time, and they have recieved no votes (to date). So a way to down vote bad questions would be nice.

Cris Luengo

Cris Luengo (view profile)

Answer by Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

on 17 Feb 2011

A Google-quality search box (or just a Google box). For example, a few minutes ago I searched for "pi" and only get the single question how to evaluate pi out to 28 decimal places that was tagged with pi, missing the much more interesting Calculate the nth digit of pi (which I have now tagged "pi" as well). If I search "pi site:http://www.mathworks.com/matlabcentral/answers/" in Google, I get much more useful results. EDIT: And MUCH faster!

3 Comments

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 17 Feb 2011

Speculation: if it matches a tag it doesn't bother to search bodies??

Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

on 17 Feb 2011

I saw your responses up above. It is a mystery why it searches the body sometimes and not others.

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 12 Apr 2011

Searching for "pi" now finds many hits.

Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

Answer by Paulo Silva

Paulo Silva (view profile)

on 28 Feb 2011

Too many people are using the Answers system like they use a search engine (google,bing,etc), I'm tired of trying to find out how to do something (wasting my time solving other person problems) and that person doesn't accept my answer or someone else answer, doesn't vote, etc.

I'm not here to earn points, I play fair and even vote against my own answers if I feel that someone else's better, the only thing that makes me mad is the amount of ungrateful people that post questions expecting answers and don't bother to vote, accept or just say thank you.

We need a way to vote down on the users, give them -1 point for the things already mentioned.

2 Comments

Jan Simon

Jan Simon (view profile)

on 28 Feb 2011

But will the negative votes have any effect? If enough people create positive votes frequently, a missing vote is as good as negative. The tags and comments are a further method to add an individual voting. I do not read questions with a doit4me tag and I do not invest a lot of time in an answer, if the OP does not reply to questions about necessary details. I feel free to post this in a comment also.
Another idea is to answer just voted questions - but unfortunately voting good questions is not very frequent yet. So see my answer...

Paulo Silva

Paulo Silva (view profile)

on 28 Feb 2011

I think it would have some effect, or just flag those who keep asking questions without interacting with the system and those who help them.

Another good thing could be only allowing someone to post a question after that person posted N comments somewhere else, that way could encourage people to interact more with others ('break the ice') and search for answers first.

Paulo Silva

Paulo Silva (view profile)

Answer by Paulo Silva

Paulo Silva (view profile)

on 11 Mar 2011

People are still able to accept their own answers! Cheating the system

4 Comments

Paulo Silva

Paulo Silva (view profile)

on 11 Mar 2011

That's not the case 99% of the time I see someone accepting their own answers, see the example above, the OP accepted his answer but the answer it self is just a thank you.

Of course there's a remote change for someone to find a solution after the question but in that case why not just add the solution to the question with edit or make a comment.

Again it's not a matter of points or reputation it's a matter of accepting the best answers, I don't know if someone already made the suggestions but comments could be turned into answers (accept comment as answer button?!) because often they have the solution.

Oliver Woodford

Oliver Woodford (view profile)

on 20 Apr 2011

When comments have the solution, it's the commenters responsibility to post it as an answer - if they don't, tough. I agree strongly with Walter that answering one's own question that no-one else can answer is very helpful, and I disagree with Paulo that it is a rare occurrence. In fact, I do it all the time - I re-ask good questions from the newsgroup, wait for a good answer, and when one isn't forthcoming (often) I post my own. This makes it more likely that people will find the answers in future without having to ask the question again. Since you get no reputation points for accepting your own answer, the only reason why people would do this is because they believe it's the most helpful answer - how can that be cheating?

Paulo Silva

Paulo Silva (view profile)

on 26 Apr 2011

Hi Oliver, I didn't noticed your message until now and wasn't aware that when accepting our own answer there were no added points, ok it's not cheating, thanks for explaining all those things that I really wasn't aware of!

Paulo Silva

Paulo Silva (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 7 Apr 2011

It appears that answer numbers and comment numbers are unique. If that is the case, then it would be useful if there was a url that we could use to reference them without having to put in the URL that includes the full title.

It isn't any strain to temporary remember a 4 or 5 digit number while one switches to another topic and writes #answer_NNNN or #comment_NNNN as appropriate, but remembering the full title such as 994-wish-list-for-matlab-answer-sections is not practical. It would thus be nice if there was a constant URL that we could use such as (e.g.)

http://matlabcentral.com/answers/jumpto/ that we could then add answer_NNNN or comment_NNNN to, which when activated would redirect the to the proper place.

Or, better yet, add some markup assistance; e.g., <$answer_NNNN text> or <$comment_NNNN text> would expand the $ to a URL prefix suitable for this purpose.

1 Comment

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 6 Jun 2011

This would be especially useful to refer to particular FAQs such as the homework ones. Though it is true those can be bookmarked and the bookmarked dragged in to the editing session.

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Fangjun Jiang

Fangjun Jiang (view profile)

on 2 Jun 2011

Be able to mark a question and its answers into "My QA Collections", just like "My Questions" and "My Answers". This will provide an easy reference for any QA that I am interested.

0 Comments

Fangjun Jiang

Fangjun Jiang (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 11 Jun 2011

Searches are case-sensitive.

For example, searching for alphadata returns a different set of postings than searching for AlphaData

This is a bug, at least in the absence of a clearly indicated (and easy) method to make the search case insensitive.

0 Comments

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Matt Fig

Matt Fig (view profile)

on 1 Jul 2011

NOT having my answers be listed oldest to newest. Having to trudge through 14 pages to see my recent answers is no fun...

Perhaps if we could choose the order from a drop-down, this would be more functional.

1 Comment

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 22 Sep 2011

2011 09 21 - sorting order is now most recently modified to least recently modified for "My Answers" button.

Matt Fig

Matt Fig (view profile)

Answer by Paulo Silva

Paulo Silva (view profile)

on 1 Jul 2011

How do you guys find the new comments or answers in this big mess without having to inspect all of it? So darn frustrating!

4 Comments

Paulo Silva

Paulo Silva (view profile)

on 2 Jul 2011

nice tip Oleg, doing the same with Opera from now on :) thanks

Matt Fig

Matt Fig (view profile)

on 2 Jul 2011

+1 Oleg! Exactly what I do.

Sean de Wolski

Sean de Wolski (view profile)

on 18 Jul 2011

Yup!

Paulo Silva

Paulo Silva (view profile)

Answer by James

James (view profile)

on 28 Sep 2011

When using search, you can sort by date answered/asked, and number of answers/votes, but you can't sort by how relevant the questions and answers are to your search (even a simple # of times each word occurs).

Filters based on product/category tags are good, but will only find questions that have actually been properly tagged.

Of course I can get round this by pointing a google search at Answers, but it'd be handy if the inbuilt search function had a go at it.

1 Comment

Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

on 29 Sep 2011

I still think that they should just add a Google search box. You don't have to do everything yourself.

James

James (view profile)

Answer by Greg Heath

Greg Heath (view profile)

on 6 Dec 2011

Please add a latest activity line in the listing of topics.

It is very annoying to have to open the topic just to see if I was the last responder.

Hope this helps.

Greg

1 Comment

Image Analyst

Image Analyst (view profile)

on 6 Dec 2011

I agree, and voted for it. I thought it might already be on the list somewhere but the list has gotten so long that I don't feel like scanning 113 (literally!) answers and comments to check anymore.

Greg Heath

Greg Heath (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 27 Jan 2012
  • I have not had time to investigate to pin down circumstances, but it appears that now when a search query of multiple words is given, the searching is no longer always an AND search. If two words are searched on, and one of the terms occurs "relatively few" times (or not at all) compared to the other, then the search returns all the Questions in which the more common term occurred, ignoring the less common (or no-match) term.
  • There is no documented way to indicate that a multi-term search is to be AND, OR, or PHRASE
  • The order in which matches are returned can be odd when multiple terms are given for the search. Sometimes about a 10 Question matches are shown that relate solely to the first term, then 20-ish Question matches are shown that relate solely to the second term, then the remainder are shown by age -- resulting in two age-related jumps in the list.

3 Comments

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 9 Feb 2012

using the keyword "and" between phrases does appear to change the results to be more AND-like.

Jan Simon

Jan Simon (view profile)

on 2 Mar 2012

+1. I did not vote this before, because the search bar of Answers is such weak, that I do not use it. But actually a powerful search is a fundamental feature of database of questions and answers. We have 27'273 threads currently. All messages have tags and time-stamps. It should be easy to find a message based on the information like: Walter has written something about periodic functions about 4 month ago.

Oleg Komarov

Oleg Komarov (view profile)

on 28 Jun 2012

It seems that with the introduction of new features the search engine has improved.

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by u-will-neva-no

u-will-neva-no (view profile)

on 17 Jun 2012

Hey everyone, I propose that there should be a built in way to add attachments such as images. I think it would be beneficial when code is attached (such as providing the formula, expected plot to be generated etc.)

u-will-neva-no

u-will-neva-no (view profile)

Answer by Jan Simon

Jan Simon (view profile)

on 28 Jun 2012

The new layout is a brute waste of space. The information density is sometimes lower than 3 sentences per screen.

The new boxes around everything confuse my eyes.

See Asnwers: me not like new layout for more details of my personal opinion.

0 Comments

Jan Simon

Jan Simon (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 8 Feb 2011
  • Ideally, when reading a question, the Home link on the left side should go back to the list of answers retaining the sorting order that one was using. At present, clicking on that link switches back to the default sort by most recent update.

It is true that one can click the "back" button on one's browser to return to where one was in the list with the sorting one last had in effect, but that isn't obvious.

0 Comments

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 18 Feb 2011

Some people have asked for HTML markup. I found accidentally this morning that some ampersand character constants work (but not in "code" sections.) I was illustrating to someone that they could put in &bull; in their uicontrol, and to my surprise the actual bullet appeared (•) .

It only appears to work for named entities, not for numbers, and it kicks in in the preview as soon as it recognizes the entity name even before you have typed the semi-colon .

So the wish-list here would be that this be documented.

0 Comments

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 25 Feb 2011

Need a horizontal-scroll bar or automatic detection of window width. Content is not reformatted to fit narrow browser windows and no scrollbar is there (Firefox, Linux)

0 Comments

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Paulo Silva

Paulo Silva (view profile)

on 1 Mar 2011

Wish-list for MATLAB's Questions

  1. Proper code formatting
  2. Search first and ask questions later
  3. Post all needed variables for the problem
  4. Don't just say that something doesn't work, paste the error code
  5. Actually try what's suggested
  6. At least try to do your homework
  7. Don't just copy and paste the homework assignment text
  8. Don't do "sneaky" changes to the original questions
  9. Don't start with multiple questions
  10. Don't change your mind while posting the question
  11. Don't expect someone to do your homework over the weekend
  12. Don't send emails asking for personalized help
  13. Vote on answers and accepted only the best of them
  14. Be nice to other people and reward them for their efforts (vote)
  15. Don't post multiple questions for the same subject

2 Comments

Oleg Komarov

Oleg Komarov (view profile)

on 1 Mar 2011

I would modify 1 to, post brief example input and desired output and the code used so far with proper formatting

Also 13-15 should be placed among the first places.

Maybe 2. should be the first one.

The homework concept should have just one point...

After 2. I would add: Read the FAQ

"Be specific" also should be included

Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

on 1 Mar 2011

There is a better home for this answer: http://www.mathworks.com/matlabcentral/answers/728-how-do-i-write-a-good-question-for-matlab-answers. More relevant and fewer answers to compete with for air!

Paulo Silva

Paulo Silva (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 3 Mar 2011

The three font markups, bold ('*'), italics ('_') and monospaced ('|') only work within individual paragraphs. If there is a paragraph break (an empty line) then the markup character will be inserted literally.

And now I understand how it didn't work for me to select a section of text with several paragraphs and click on the monospace button, but I believe that if the selected text contains paragraph breaks then when the buttons are pressed, the formatting should be applied paragraph by paragraph if that is what is needed to have the entire selection rendered in to the chosen mode.

0 Comments

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 4 Mar 2011

If you view someone's profile page, and click to see their Answers list, and from that list click to read one of the Questions, then when you use your browser's Back function, you will be returned to the person's Question list instead of to their Answers list.

This is because the Answers tab is implemented via an HTML anchor that invokes local code to display the appropriate data, leaving the page URL unchanged. When you go off the page and return, the URL you are going back to is the one that displays the Questions list.

Wish: that going Back after viewing a particular Question gets you to whichever tab you were viewing, at the point you were viewing it.

1 Comment

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 28 Jun 2011

This issue was fixed today (June 28 2011) !

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 9 Mar 2011

Comments need to be searchable. Indexed too would be good, even if the index had to be reached from My Answers or the user profile. People add a lot of valuable information in the form of comments, and a lot of the hints about ways to perform particular kinds of tasks better often show up as Comments.

EDIT: I see that indexed was suggested by someone else; my further explication applies to both indexing and searching.

3 Comments

Helen Chen

Helen Chen (view profile)

on 11 Apr 2011

Done!

Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

on 11 Apr 2011

You have the best comments, Helen!

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 12 Apr 2011

Yow!

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by per isakson

per isakson (view profile)

on 11 Mar 2011

Links to "Published MATLAB Files" would help discussions on code and solutions, which include more than a few lines of code.

I often read the "Published MATLAB Files" in the FEX before downloading, e.g. "Comparison of hgsetget and hgsetgetplus"

Thus I want

  1. Upload "Published MATLAB Files" to Answer
  2. Insert links in my text
  3. Replace the URL by a meaningful string

/ per

PS: Will anybody read this in the old thread?

2 Comments

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 11 Mar 2011

Per, what I do is open a separate tab, find the information I am looking for there, and copy the URL. Then I switch back, and at the location I want the link, put in a > after the last word that I want to be in the meaningful string, go to the beginning of the first word I want to be in the meaningful string, put a < before that and then a space, and then paste the URL right after the < .

per isakson

per isakson (view profile)

on 11 Mar 2011

Thanks, Walter, that was too simple for me ;-) I messed around with "href=". Now, I have to come up with a good question together with a "Published m-file" to try my idea.

per isakson

per isakson (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 16 Mar 2011

Do we need a "Best of Answers" area? Cross-referencing and tagging and rating the over 3000 Questions and nearly 5000 Answers is probably a hopeless -- but it might be worthwhile to have a mechanism to nominate a Question as a classic question (perhaps to be generalized a bit) with answer(s) synthesized from the various suggestions.

The question, though, is "Who will bell the cat?"

2 Comments

Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

on 16 Mar 2011

Pretty soon we're going to need a "Best of 'Wish-list for MATLAB Answers section'"! Ironically, if I vote for this answer, people are going to have trouble finding it.

Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

on 16 Mar 2011

Seriously, though, I agree. Some really good answers are likely to die in obscurity otherwise.

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 24 Mar 2011

As noted above, there is no scroll-bar for narrow browser windows. The lack of scroll-bar turns out to be worse than expected. I noted above that in Answers, content that cannot word-wrap extends past the end of the box on the screen. Well, in Comments, word-wrap does not wrap on as many symbols and the text clips against the edge of the box. The result can be that a lot of a Comment goes missing without any hint except perhaps loss of continuity. If the user happens to think to select the entire comment and paste it into an editor, the entire content is available so this is a word-wrap and display formatting issue. See for example the rather bad clipping here; the comment that follows that was after I manually inserted spaces around operators and manually converted some long integers to exponent notation.

2 Comments

Matt Fig

Matt Fig (view profile)

on 24 Mar 2011

A quoted sentence was not rendered.

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 8 Jun 2011

I would call this a bug.

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 7 Apr 2011

Downloadable dictionary suitable for IE or Firefox (and potentially for OpenOffice or Word), containing the names of the Mathworks functions, so that when we type in MATLAB commands in to messages, our browser doesn't complain that we are making spelling mistakes.

1 Comment

Matt Tearle

Matt Tearle (view profile)

on 9 Apr 2011

My iPad is slowly learning MATLAB. Which is actually kinda cool. But also slow and painful - "no, meshgrid, one word, leave it alone, stupid autocorrect..."

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 12 Apr 2011

Especially when editing long questions, it gets to be a bit wearing that the Save button is (only) below the preview. Could we get an additional Save between the edit box and the preview ?

0 Comments

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 19 Apr 2011

When one edits a Question and then returns to the index via the Back button, then if one is sorting by Most Recent Modification, the just-edited Question appears as the first entry of the current page. The system does know the proper time for it and shows it in the correct order if one changes pages, so it is an oddity rather than a deep problem.

1 Comment

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 8 Jun 2011

I would call this a bug, but not a priority.

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 19 Apr 2011

I wonder if it would be possible to get an editor button that lower-cases the current selection? When people write their question in all-uppercase, it is a pain to re-type their question or to copy-and-paste to an external editor, make the change there, and copy-and-paste back over the original.

0 Comments

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 20 Apr 2011

Sometimes Questioners perceive negative value in some responses, and ask that the respondent not reply to them in future. Possibly those Questioners would prefer if there was a mechanism to actively block specific people from replying to them in future.

And possibly some respondents may wish to "subscribe" to being warned or blocked from replying to someone found to be unproductive to deal with.

I shall not defend the merits of these possibilities, just raise them because I happened to think of them. (Besides, the more I think about the second of them, the more seductive the idea becomes...)

0 Comments

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 20 Apr 2011

Wish: that the main page for Answers would stop saying that the page was not found.

(I got in directly through the Contributors page, and I cannot see any issues; the database still seems to be active, but the main page is fried.

2 Comments

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 20 Apr 2011

I have determined that this likely a problem with one of the first 8 most recently added messages (added before my series of tests, that is.)

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 21 Apr 2011

This problem is now fixed! Yeh-Haw!

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 9 May 2011

Bracket matching, please. Even if the first version doesn't account for quoted brackets, it would be a help. Restricting it to "Code" sections would be fine (and would make sense.) Best would be deep enough parsing to recognize problems per-statement on-the-fly, but even having to select an area and invoke the bracket-checking function on it would be good.

0 Comments

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 9 May 2011

I have noticed that some users are interpreting the {} of the '{} Code' button as indicating that the proper way to mark a section as being code is to enclose it within a { } pair.

I'm not sure the {} part of the button label is adding any clarity to its purpose, and it is confusing some people.

1 Comment

Jan Simon

Jan Simon (view profile)

on 26 Aug 2011

I believe, that the "{}" is a relict from experiments with different markup methods. For the current method, there is no cennection to curly braces.

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 12 May 2011

Per-user (user-controllable) default tags.

For example, if the user could (was prompted to) set up tags corresponding to the MATLAB release and OS + Version that they are using, then it could save questions about "Which version are you using".

Further refinement: as users might not notice this facility, perhaps an ability for people (editors?) to trigger a "suggestion". I'm not sure how that would work... perhaps in the form of a URL sent to the user that they could click to confirm, or perhaps in the form of a URL sent to the user that they could click to take them to the configuration form.

3 Comments

Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

on 12 May 2011

What if they have multiple versions?

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 12 May 2011

Then they wouldn't set the default tags.

Matt Fig

Matt Fig (view profile)

on 12 May 2011

These could also be update-able fields set in each user's profile when registering. Something like:

User Name: Matt Fig
Versions in use: 7.01, 2006a, 2007b
etc...
etc..

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 13 May 2011

When one is adding a Tag, one can type a comma after the text to signal that the text is complete and the tag corresponding to the text is to be added.

When one is adding a Product, this is not available: one must click a product list entry to have it added.

It would be nice if one could also use the comma in the Product list. In particular, this is a nuisance when one is trying to select the generic product MATLAB (the most common Product) or the generic product SIMULINK (probably about the third most common Product).

1 Comment

Randy Souza

Randy Souza (view profile)

on 28 Jun 2012

You should be able to do this now (I can't recall when we added it).

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 26 May 2011

When a long Tag is entered and the total Tags length is enough that one or more are positioned on additional lines, then the positioning of the first tag on the second line may be messed up, not starting until a few characters before the start of the long tag. This happens especially if there are multiple long tags.

Sometimes users enter entire questions as single tags, or try to separate tags with semi-colons or the like: long tags can result. And sometimes there might only be a single long tag that has a spelling error (along with shorter ones); when I go to fix the error by entering the corrected tag before deleting the old one, the display of the tags usually messes up.

Refreshing the page does not help: it is not a momentary glitch. It is possible, though, that it is browser-sensitive: I have seen it with Firefox 4 and TenFourFox

0 Comments

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 27 May 2011

It would be nice to have more flexibility on date selection. For example, it would not be uncommon to want to look at everything that had been modified since the last time one checked; that could be a varying amount of time, but "1 day" would bracket it much better than 7 days; likewise a time frame corresponding to checking on Monday after not having checked since Friday would likely be common.

I did do some experimenting with supplying my own time frames, but only the time frames that are selectable from the index were recognized even (not a syntax matter; the syntax was clear.)

0 Comments

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

Answer by Igor

Igor (view profile)

on 2 Jun 2011

Asking a question, sometimes I forgot to fill "keyword" field and press OK button, the error occured, but by browser (Mozilla) button "Return (Undo)" I have seen EMPTY form. That is, all text I have to retype :(

5 Comments

Andrew Newell

Andrew Newell (view profile)

on 2 Jun 2011

That looks like a great add-on!

Igor

Igor (view profile)

on 2 Jun 2011

Easier to change JavaScript then to install Lazarus :)

Walter Roberson

Walter Roberson (view profile)

on 8 Jun 2011

I would call this a bug.