I'm talking about clicking on the little envelop vs clicking your own username next to it. After using stackoverflow almost daily for 9 months now, I still locate certain pages by trial and error.

Example scenario: I want to see if recent comments I made had responses in the form of comments or edits. So I typically click the envelope (RECENT comment right?), then click a few tabs (summary/responses/revisions) and spend a few seconds staring at each one, give up, click my username, ah! ACTIVITY is what I want.

This process takes time, and its not unusual for me to forget what I was looking for because I'm distracted by all the other interesting things that I see on the way to the activity tab.

Similar problem: I can't remember which of the "reputation" tabs I can find behind the envelope, and which one behind the username link.

Is there any logic to the madness that can help me remember?

edit: I'll attempt to clarify. I click the envelope if I want to see "recent stuff". I click my username if I want to see "more stuff I couldn't find under 'recent stuff'", such as the activity tab. Help me form a better mental map of stackoverflow.

  • So the envelope and the profile link from the username and what content is found at each is what is confusing you?
    – Troggy
    Oct 21, 2009 at 23:26
  • Yes. If the question is that hard to understand for everybody, then maybe I should delete it. Apparently the problem is in my brain and not in stackoverflow.
    – wcoenen
    Oct 22, 2009 at 0:16

2 Answers 2


/users/recent/xxxxx - To you

If you want to see what someone else has given to you, click the envelope. That page tracks what gifts, letters of love and other such notes, badges and revisions other users have put forward to you.

/users/xxxxx/username - From you

If you want to track how you've put things out into the sites, click your username and then Activity tab. Because that's tracking your activity and things you've put into other people's envelopes and sealed with a kiss of interaction and friendliness.

  • 1
    +1 Ah... That explains why my own edits don't show up under "recent - revisions". It seems perfectly logical in retrospect but somehow it never clicked in my head.
    – wcoenen
    Oct 22, 2009 at 1:38

More importantly, is there any logic to the madness that is this question? :)

I've read this like three times and I still can't quite tell what you're asking. What exactly is your question?

  • 2
    I thought he was asking why you chose the routes you did, but it turns out that he's just asking what you get when you click the envelope vs what you get when you click your name. BTW, why did you set up the routes this way? What's the point in adding the username to the end of the second?
    – tvanfosson
    Oct 22, 2009 at 0:41

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