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Is this (the following image) the intended default UI that is to be shown to a user when the URL http://android.stackexchange.com/topbar/inbox is accessed?

enter image description here

That looks, how do I phrase it, pretty much soulless, devoid of everything except crude text.

Note: I'm not mocking anyone's design or coding experience/judgement here, if you may happen to assume so. All I want to say is, that page looks WEIRD and it may impact negatively the experience of a new user on an SE site.

Similar crude text can also be seen for the URL http://meta.stackexchange.com/topbar/achievements


This is how I ended up at that page:

  1. Go to Superuser/Stack Overflow/Android Enthusiasts/Meta StackExchange or perhaps any other network site without being logged in → tap the inbox/achievements icon → log in.

    On a side-note, I suppose the inbox and achievements icon (for a non-logged in user) were introduced recently, not sure though.

    enter image description here

  2. I have my account registered with Facebook so I used the Facebook authentication option. There is no issue in UI up until now.

  3. And now, you're greeted with a series of hyperlinks.

    enter image description here

The behavior is consistent on both Firefox and Chrome. I used the following platforms and browser builds to test the UI, with and without addons/extensions:

  • Slackware Linux 14.1

    • Firefox v38.2.1 (offered by Tor's latest build) and v38.0.5 Beta
    • Chromium v41.0.2272.76 (64-bit)
  • Windows 7

    • Firefox v40.0.3
    • Google Chrome v45.0.2454.99 m

I found transcripts by rene and nicael here and considering the text there, I suppose the URLs probably has some merit to exist and remain publicly accessible.

So,

  1. What did I really see: a deliberate design or an unexpected outcome of something unbeknownst to me?
  2. Is there a reason those URLs are accessible to a user but remaining alien to parent site's UI?
  3. Perhaps, in all likelihood, everything I noted above is not an issue at all . In that case, sorry for the trouble caused here!
3

Derp derp. Our return url code changed quite a bit recently and it looks like we missed a check. Fix pushed, will be live next build. Thanks!

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  • Umm, how long will it take for the next build to take effect? – 286110 Oct 5 '15 at 21:41
  • @Firelord Gonna build out in a few here. Give it 30 mins or so? – Adam Lear Oct 5 '15 at 21:42
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    A more general answer to that is "sometime in the next 24 hours unless it's the weekend". :) – Adam Lear Oct 5 '15 at 21:43
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What did I really see: a deliberate design or an unexpected outcome of something unbeknownst to me?

It is definitely a bug. The problem is in the returnurl parameter that is specified on the logon and signup button. It should be omitted.

Now it looks like this: http://stackoverflow.com/users/login?ssrc=achievements&returnurl=http%3a%2f%2fstackoverflow.com%2ftopbar%2fachievements%3f_%3d1515151515. The &returnurl=... part should go. It tells the browser to return to the raw HTML page you are seeing instead of the page you are currently visiting.

Is there a reason those URLs are accessible to a user but remaining alien to parent site's UI?

Yes, so the AJAX code can load achievements in the background. You can type the URL by hand, there is nothing that should stop you from doing that.

Perhaps, in all likelihood, everything I noted above is not an issue at all . In that case, sorry for the trouble caused here!

It was good you reported it here. Have my vote!

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  • Yes, I did try (before posting the question) typing those URLs and received the same result. – 286110 Sep 22 '15 at 8:11

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