-650

Update 3 - 2022-02-01

We've rolled out another small set of changes + bugfixes. The largest change was that we removed the yellow from watched tags entirely, leaving just the new "watched" icon.

We've also added this answer where we lay out our next steps.

enter image description here

Update 2 - 2022-01-27

We've pushed some layout changes live. When reviewing the given feedback as a whole, we've identified a few major themes:

  • Stats are too hard to pick apart, "votes" in particular
  • New watched/ignored states are not bright enough/too bright (respectively) and cause too much trailing whitespace

We've made the following changes to alleviate these issues:

  • Bumped up the size of stats
  • Gave more visible weight to "votes"
  • Gave less visible weight to "supernova" view counts by removing the :fire: icon
  • Removed "watched" state label, restored the yellow background and adding highlighting/icon to the individual tags that are causing the watched status
  • Removed "ignored" state label, added icon to the individual tags that are causing the ignored state

This latest set of changes also includes a number of bug fixes. We're still discussing how to better improve this component. There is still some extra whitespace at the end when there is no body excerpt and a bounty exists on the post (though, this is generally still less trailing whitespace than the current design on /questions, which has a body excerpt). Thank you for your continued feedback.

enter image description here enter image description here enter image description here

Update 1 - 2022-01-25

Most of the reported bugs have been squashed. We're currently gathering together all the and feedback items to decide how we want to alter the design. Thank you everyone for your feedback.


Original Post

tl;dr

We’re starting a rollout of the new post summary design to many existing screens, starting with greatest hits. This will be a slow rollout, with only one set of related screens changing at a time.

What we’re shipping now

We’ve built a new component to replace the existing post summary implementation. We aimed for ~100% data compatibility with this implementation so that users are not losing any statistics or features. That being said, our desire to leave the existing data intact as much as possible has led to sub-optimal layouts in a few uncommon scenarios, particularly for the display of community wiki posts. Work on these experiences is ongoing and will improve over time.

For the initial announcement, we’ve migrated /questions/greatest-hits to use the new implementation. This way, users can have a tangible example they can use today, before we roll out the design to more and more screens. Why did we choose greatest hits to start with? It was an ideal screen for many reasons:

  • Entirely standalone - no dependencies on other screens/processes and not depended on
  • Low user impact - low traffic, infrequently referenced and not terribly well known (even among employees!)
  • Uses the exact same component code and layout as /questions - users can see this as a very close preview for what will be shipping there later on
  • In disrepair - the screen was already showing some signs of neglect and really needed some love <3

Before

post summary before

After

post summary after

What we’re shipping later

In addition to greatest hits, we’re aiming to roll this new design out site-wide. The areas we’re concentrating on first are the main areas of the site that still have mobile-only layouts. As we remove our final mobile views, we need to ensure that the remaining responsive views actually look good on smaller screens. More specifically, the following high traffic views are next on our list:

  • / (home / recent questions) - our “QuestionMini” layout questionmini layout
  • /questions/* (question list, list by tag, search, etc) - our “QuestionSummary” layout
    questionsummary layout

Work on these screens has progressed fairly far already due to most of the necessary work being in the creation and implementation of the underlying component. However, we’ve decided to hold off on the rollout until after the community has had an opportunity for processing the design changes and to offer us feedback.

Eventually, everything will be the new post-summary design, but it may be some time before the changes reach the long tail of our many different views.

Where we are currently using this design

Despite my claims above that this is a “new” design, we’ve been using it in a number of places across the site for quite some time. A (non-inclusive) list of places that are already using the post-summary design:

Why we’re making these changes

Our current designs have withstood the test of time, but they fall short in many areas:

  1. We generally assume 3 items of metadata: score, answers, and views. If we want to add new entries for e.g. bookmarks or revisions, it can be difficult to create a consistent layout in a list of questions.
  2. Inconsistencies in implementation have led to several different layouts across the site. When gathering requirements for a unified post summary component, we found at least 5 (five!) different layouts.
  3. Scaling the design is tricky, both in window size and adding features and functionality. We need to support all sorts of metadata on all sorts of devices.
  4. Our post summaries were only designed to support questions (and answers, kinda). We need to be able to display various content types in single lists. For example, in a list of notifications, we may want to present an article next to a question.
  5. We have no unified place to put an action menu.

Our new post-summary design solves these problems while supporting future features we’re exploring. Some features we’re looking forward to are:

  1. An arbitrary, scalable number of stats
  2. Multiple different content types
  3. A consistent location for post actions
  4. Scalable excerpts
  5. Responsive layouts
  6. A single consistent layout regardless of what data is included

How this component was designed

An early version of this component first appeared in Stack Overflow for Teams in a feature called For You. For You is a rich list of notifications that include questions, answers, and articles.

The existing designs were desirable for familiarity, but just weren’t well suited for the task. After the initial proposal and some iterations with our team of designers, the new post summary design was ready for user testing.

User testing was run with ~170 recently active users against 5 different versions of the post summary design (two of those being existing designs). The chosen design performed better than the existing designs in some metrics (including readability) and never worse on the remaining metrics (including familiarity, data absorption).

After this new design tested well, the design systems team gathered further requirements from across the organization and built it out as an official Stacks component. If you’re technically inclined, you can see some of the iterations in various open source pull requests.

If you’re familiar with the design tool Figma, feel free to check out some explorations prior to us moving into code.

FAQ

Q: What if I find a bug/regression?
A: Report it as an answer to this post - one bug per answer please. If you’re feeling charitable, add a [tag:bug] tag to the top of your post so we can more easily find it.

Q: What if I have constructive feedback, but it isn’t a bug?
A: We’d like to hear it! Add it as an answer on this post. As above, you can add a [tag:discussion] tag to the top of the post as well.

Q: When will FAVORITE_SCREEN be migrated to use this new design?
A: 6-8 weeks

162
  • 197
    I wish more work went into improving the UX instead of the UI.
    – Travis J
    Jan 12 at 22:34
  • 191
    I sure don't like it; much harder to see the metadata on the home page. Jan 24 at 21:58
  • 208
    This layout makes the desktop experience on the homepage worse, due to a lower information density displayed at once on the screen (# questions per screen), more difficult to parse and smaller statistics, too much padding between list items, misaligned tag and user bars with the bottom of the question block
    – illustro
    Jan 24 at 22:12
  • 162
    Is it just me or does anyone hates these changes to the feed and profile? I say "hate", because they're ruining the desktop experience. Jan 24 at 23:12
  • 61
    @BernardoDuarte the rapidly declining score on this post says "yes". As we've seen before though, score on announcements means nothing
    – Phil
    Jan 24 at 23:14
  • 138
    I honestly don't see how this can be considered an improvement. It's harder to find information from a glance and it looks incredibly unbalanced.
    – Ambo100
    Jan 24 at 23:42
  • 131
    It's horrible in nearly every way. Not a single improvement to my experience and several things which are worse.
    – takendarkk
    Jan 24 at 23:52
  • 84
    Why do UX changes always make things harder to read and digest sigh
    – deep64blue
    Jan 24 at 23:59
  • 75
    The change to add ignored tags with a black background, just to make questions you want to ignore stand out even more is ridiculous and bad UX design
    – illustro
    Jan 25 at 1:26
  • 73
    While it was great that you released this on the Greatest Hits page first for us to poke around with, there's a fundamental problem with that, and it's why so many people are upset now: no one uses the Greatest Hits page. It's not part of anyone's regular workflow, so it's harder for us to see how the new design will break our workflows. People aren't used to using it, so if information is a little awkward to acquire, or certain use-cases aren't served, it's difficult for us to see it. I don't have a solution, just wanted to point out why the pre-release didn't end up being that useful.
    – bobble
    Jan 25 at 1:37
  • 136
    While I appreciate the effort that's gone into this, it's really disappointing how consistently any UI changes to the site actually make the experience worse. It seems like every change is a net regression. Do the staff just think our consistent complaining is because people hate change? Because it's much more than that. Almost every change is a significant step backwards in some respects. This change seems to have a number of objective flaws. I feel like all the effort that's spent twiddling with a layout that's always been fine could be put to better use.
    – Michael
    Jan 25 at 2:03
  • 62
    I've created a userscript that brings back the old design.
    – Spectric
    Jan 25 at 3:50
  • 118
    In the name of everything that you hold sacred, please revert this!. My brain hurts trying to process this layout. There's way too much empty space and a tiny vote count is purely awful!
    – jojek
    Jan 25 at 9:27
  • 106
    As a Stack Overflow old-time developer. Don't come to the community with solutions. Come to the community with a problem statement and an idea and iterate. This way you'll get a better solution than this and you won't get massive downvotes. Remember: most people here are (a) better stack overflow experts than you or me and (b) better developers too. Give them a chance.
    – Sklivvz
    Jan 25 at 10:34
  • 76
    "While it was great that you released this on the Greatest Hits page first for us to poke around with, there's a fundamental problem with that, and it's why so many people are upset now: no one uses the Greatest Hits page." I have been around for over 11 years, and this meta.SE question is literally the first time I have ever heard about a "greatest hits" page. Staring at the current Stack Overflow interface, I have absolutely no clue how one is intended to navigate there, other than by manually entering the URL. So... no wonder nobody uses it. Jan 25 at 10:41

95 Answers 95

11

Highlight/shade whole deleted item rather than use the delete label in the stats column

enter image description here

Update 2 from 2022-01-27 removed the "Watched" label but not the "Deleted" one.

What was wrong with the old system of shading the item background in red?


This also needs implementation in some of the profile activity lists! You removed that highlighting when the new design was implemented there as well

3
  • tbh, as someone who sees a lot of deleted posts, this is the implimentation I prefer. Especially since most users won't see it
    – Journeyman Geek Mod
    Jan 31 at 15:39
  • @JourneymanGeek So you would prefer to lose the extra height needed for the label? Not ideal in my mind. The previous red highlighting approach allows maintaining same height. Not sure what rules are in the profile activity lists when you follow or bookmark items if you need high rep or not to see the deleted ones there
    – charlietfl
    Jan 31 at 16:40
  • 2
    I'd rather have the heights of each item consistant, and not change with different states
    – Journeyman Geek Mod
    Jan 31 at 16:47
10

User avatars/profile pictures on question list add to visual noise

I couldn't find anyone else mentioning this - on such a cluttered view as the home-page it's really important to avoid making unimportant information very high contrast or colourful, where it fights for attention with what you're trying to read. In particular, I don't think there's much value in user profile pictures appearing in the top questions view, where they didn't previously appear and it definitely adds a piece of shiny clutter to the view, especially as the location of the profile picture bounces around so much from line to line. I find this combines with the "watched" tags and the higher contrast in the modified date to make the page feel a fair bit more grating than before.

I don't intend this to take a stance one way or another about other places that the new view is shown. Maybe in some of them the identity of the author is much more salient. This is about its use to show "top questions" in the home page.

Here are old and new examples from the "Top Questions: Interesting" view.

Single item from old "Top Questions" view. On the left are columns for votes, answer and view counts. In the bottom right in grey text is "modified 19 mins ago", a username, then a reputation score.

Three programming questions from the new "top questions" view. All of the questions are taller with more whitespace. Every question has a bright yellow "watched" badge now. There's just one column on the left, containing the watched badges, answer, vote and view counts, stacked for each question. Question author names now have a small avatar next to them. Their reputation and the time the question was asked is in brighter text.

5
  • 3
    User profile pictures were there before (as 32x32 icons, just like on the actual question pages), and personally I quite like them. But at the new 16x16 size, they're pointless. You have to squint to make them out, and they don't accomplish the visual goal of making the user card seem like a card - a coherent entity that's part of the layout. Now it's just, like, a line of information that happens to have a small blob of pixels in front of it for some inscrutable reason. Jan 25 at 12:18
  • 3
    Some of the places this view is used didn't have user pictures before. Specifically the home / recent questions view. I'll clarify in the answer.
    – Weeble
    Jan 25 at 14:12
  • Thanks for the visual. Personally I would like for the view on / to resemble the view on /questions as much as possible. I'm not even sold that they should be separate things, aside from some default filter settings. Stack Exchange websites are the questions. Everything else is ancillary. Jan 25 at 15:10
  • I hadn't honestly realised they were different before now. The current view with the big icons on the questions pages benefits from having them in the same horizontal position all down the column. It feels less distracting than this. Definitely agreed that that / and /questions are doing the same kind of thing and deserve one good layout between them.
    – Weeble
    Jan 25 at 15:44
  • 1
    "The current view with the big icons on the questions pages benefits from having them in the same horizontal position all down the column." Yes; that's another reason I like the old user card, and advocated for it in my answer. Jan 25 at 19:48
10

Please take a look at this screenshot here from the Home page, bountied tab, and compare it with the bountied tab on the Questions page.

Home page:

enter image description here

Questions page

enter image description here

I made sure to make both screenshots exactly 700px high as for a fair comparison. The questions page is certainly far more information dense (hence preferable) then the Home page.

This basically has the following causes (which should be addressed IMHO):

  1. Superfluous labels in the Home page

    There really is no need for the watched and ignored labels, the current implementation those have is perfectly fine as they are on the Questions page. I suggest you remove the labels (which frees up ton's of vertical space, as was already asked for in the answer by John Montgomery. Also the watched label is called superfluous in the answer by vitaliis.

  2. The bounty label

    I understand the reasoning behind moving the bounty label to the left, and to group all "meta"data together. The implementation however is just done poorly. The post summary stats container has a width of 96px, and the bounty label at a value of +500 (is the plus sign really needed btw?), which is the value with the greatest width has a width of 40.1166 px. (Removing the + sign reduces the width to 32.55 px) This makes this badge small enough to be displayed on the same row as the views counter in most cases, saving tons of vertical space.

As it currently stands the amount of extra information I get from viewing the questions tab is just astonishingly. I get the first 2 rows of each question practically for free. You guys (and girls) really should do a better job at this. And concluding that the original design was good enough can also be a conclusion!

p.s. Don't even get me started on the mobile implementation of this, where meta data is crammed up in between titles, that just horribly in itself.

0
10

There are aspects of this change that I like, but being unable to quickly see the score and the massive amount of extra space this design puts in is problematic.

What I'd suggest is:

  1. Get rid of the threshold for vertical layout vs horizontal and only use horizontal
  2. Re-implement the Score box on the left, removing score and views from the top (this should still be collapsible to the top left, giving the full width title space for mobile)
  3. Add views somewhere else, such as bottom right, or bottom left, it doesn't belong in the top. It isn't as important as score and therefore doesn't need the big callout.
  4. Add "Closed" as an additional status box that is shown along the top, similar to Watched/Answered etc. Even better, have it include the short close reason (Duplicate, Off Topic, Unclear, Not Focused) rather than saying "Closed" so that you can quickly see the close reason when looking at a list of closed questions.

The idea would be to make use of the available space while still accomplishing your goals of having an expandable stat list and a scalable design, and preserving the information that we users need to use the UI effectively.

3
  • 2
    Thank you for putting some of my thoughts into a "What I'd suggest is:" Jan 25 at 17:39
  • 1
    “Add ‘Closed’ as an additional status box” — Apparently this is already planned, unless I misunderstood your suggestion. Jan 26 at 3:21
  • That's half of it, but it's not implemented. That also seems quite... bright, to the point of potentially drawing too much attention.
    – Kevin B
    Jan 26 at 17:50
9

A title with a long word is not wrapped correctly (example):

A question with a long title that is cutted off; it's also not possible to read the text "asked X mins ago".

When searching for it, it looks like this (ellipsis are added):

A question with a long title but with ellipsis.

1
9

Tag(s) and answer(s) misalignment really bothers me...

enter image description here

Zoomed for clarity...

enter image description here

It may not seem like much, but it is constantly noticed here. It's unsettling and lacks balance.

To be frank, the more I see the new layout, the less I like it.

8

If we can't revert, is there a way to make this change optional much like the color palette and other layout settings?

I'm not a fond of this change to be honest, but I can understand if someone likes it, otherwise I'm guessing you wouldn't have built it in the first place.

6
  • 7
    I doubt it, because the "Why we’re making these changes" section of the OP suggests they're doing it partly to simplify the current implementation, and it wouldn't be simpler if they made the new implementation optional and kept the old implementation also.
    – ChrisW
    Jan 25 at 7:16
  • 2
    This is a common request on design changes everywhere, and the answer is always that supporting multiple versions is a lot more difficult than it sounds. Having a temporary switch, while you work out the kinks, is pretty easy; it's probably already there for the roll-out. Supporting it permanently means that every time a new feature or change is built, you have to design it for both views, implement it for both views, test it for both views, fix bugs on both views... Then you want to re-design again, and are pressured to support three views... It's very rarely a practical solution.
    – IMSoP
    Jan 25 at 16:01
  • @IMSoP generally I would have agreed with you. It sure is much more difficult, but considering the fact there are more users against this change than those favoring it, I believe it is a special consideration worth exploring if SE wishes this change to stay.
    – Bharel
    Jan 25 at 16:06
  • 2
    @Bharel People are always far more vocal at expressing what they don't like than what they do like, or are indifferent to. They (or should I say, we) are also notoriously averse to change. This kind of feedback happens basically every time any website or software changes its design. Realistically, there are two paths: withdrawing the design (meaning, wasted effort, and failure to meet original project goals), or rolling out, hopefully after acting on any constructive feedback which can be filtered from the background noise of general dissatisfaction.
    – IMSoP
    Jan 25 at 16:15
  • @IMSoP I thought you'd say that. It's a little more philosophical, but what percentage of the userbase needs to disagree with a change before we realize it's not a background noise but the actual customers being dissatisfied? I fully respect the effort the developers have put into this proposal, but for me at least it makes it much harder to contribute to the site, and there are plenty more like me. You're completely right, if this change was positive I wouldn't have posted anything, but we should compare it to the history of design change posts at meta and see the user's downvote percentage.
    – Bharel
    Jan 25 at 16:25
  • @IMSoP besides, a proper beta for such a significant change is warranted. I'd gladly join one and share feedback, but then turn off the feature and continue contributing like I love. I'm all ups for experiments and betas, and the extra few days work of hosting 2 versions with a temporary switch would have probably been worth it.
    – Bharel
    Jan 25 at 16:30
8

Can we please get a setting that lets us choose between "Top Questions" and "All Questions" as the default view when we navigate to root? That for me at least would solve all of the problems.

If that's not feasible, at least a one-click option from root to show the questions view - not hidden behind a menu.

To be clear, it would help even if the /questions page is converted to a version of the new view - as long as it still has post summaries, anyway.

6
  • 3
    They're planning to use this design in /questions as well, so trying to hide there won't help you for long.
    – interjay
    Jan 25 at 18:05
  • @interjay Understood (and that's unfortunate), but as long as they keep the post summaries it will be more palatable at least. I've always preferred that layout- this just pushes me more that direction...
    – Joe
    Jan 25 at 18:06
  • 3
    There were never post summaries on the homepage. :( The current design is just mimicking the old design that didn't have them.
    – Catija StaffMod
    Jan 25 at 19:37
  • @Catija Yes, understood, not re-litigating that :) This would allow us to choose a different view (vis-a-vis auto-loading the Questions page) which does have post summaries (that's not going away, right?).
    – Joe
    Jan 25 at 19:50
  • 1
    Couldn't we just have a widget on the page to toggle visibility of post summaries? Ideally remembering the user's previous setting? Jan 25 at 20:53
  • 1
8

This answer was not implemented for the live refresh feature

That answer, which was about linking to the last activity, showing the last active user and timestamp, and showing the correct action was not implemented for questions loaded in when clicking "[x] question(s) with new activity". Such questions loaded in when clicking that still show the prior buggy view. Only after a page refresh is the fixed behavior visible.

Can that please be fixed for the live refresh?

1
  • 4
    I think I know where the issue lies with this one. I'll take a look and see if we can't get a quick fix in.
    – Ben Kelly StaffMod
    Jan 24 at 23:39
8

I can understand the general motivation for all these changes. In fact I might even agree that they are the right decisions.

That being said, the amount of added white-space seems egregious. For example:

Even a simple change like this (quickly mocked up with dev tools in my browser) would bring a welcome improvement:

  • Decreased bottom margin of each of the 3 rows of information on the left hand side

  • Decreased column width of information section on the left hand side

  • Increase bottom padding of post title to align the tags with the bottom of "views"

  • Increased post title font size slightly to increase readability

  • Flipped background of "answer" box to highlight this more

3
  • 1
    the background of the "answer" line is meaningful. No background means n answers exist, but none are accepted. This distinction is important because some people only want to see one or the other, depending on their needs.
    – Kevin B
    Jan 25 at 20:05
  • Marking as duplicate of this very similar post
    – Ben Kelly StaffMod
    Jan 25 at 20:06
  • @KevinB I think the new design has a checkmark for those questions which have an accepted answer now.
    – codedude
    Jan 26 at 15:10
8

Latest Activity Link in private SO instances are missing the private part
.. and are therfore pointing to a completely different question on public SO

Private SO Question

(1) Links to https://stackoverflow.com/c/{private-so}/questions/1234
(2) Links to https://stackoverflow.com/questions/1234/question-title?lastactivity

1
  • 1
    Thank you for the report! This has been fixed. There were a number of preexisting bugs in these "mixed content" views. I believe that this bug was actually preexisting, but unnoticed.
    – Ben Kelly StaffMod
    Jan 27 at 16:13
8

Even after the third update, the site doesn't looks as good as it used to look.

You have said this: "increased size of stats as a whole".

Take a look at this:

enter image description here

The bounty label is huge compared to the other important stats like votes.

Better increase the stats size more and decrease the size of the bounty label.

1
8

When the community members gave feedback about Changes to answer sorting menu: moving menu, "Newest" sort option, renaming sort options, the company went back to the drawing board and came up with this Revisiting changes to answer sorting menu: better use of space, moving menu into a dropdown, ascending/descending sort options, clearer descriptions. That's nice, right?

Why cannot something similar be done for the post summary design too?

Please do not be inconsiderate. I would like to quote Zanna:

The reasons people have for maintaining and contributing to a commons are quite simple; they derive some important benefit from it, and realise that without the participation of people like them, it will not exist. I believe this is a strong motivation, both emotional and rational. Not everyone will feel the need or have the skills/time/means to contribute, but if enough do, the commons will survive and thrive

I would like to emphasise about time. Our time is valuable and without us spending time with the communities, the communities will perish. Feature changes like this anger users, make them want to use the site less and less as they have to spend more time to get used to the changes (which they don't like) being forced upon them.

Please value our time. Please value the communities.

7

Looking at the states of the post summary design although this hasn't rolled out I noticed some of the icons aren't center aligned in the labels (for example for Deleted, Closed, Archived). Might as well mention it now before it roles out or just in case it's a mistake in the Stacks page.

screenshot of icons inside labels

Edit:

The deleted label is already visible in the migrated returned tabs of the 10k tools.

1
  • 2
    On Firefox Nighly 98.0a1, I get all texts aligned correctly. The effective font face is Liberation Sans. The “Archived” label appears to be missing one pixel in height, even though all labels have a height of 21.7 px, but these are tiny rendering glitches which I wouldn’t worry about too much. Jan 25 at 9:09
7

  1. It's very inconvenient to use this horizontal scrollbar on phone. I am not sure if it was there before.

    Android, Samsung Galaxy S7 Resolution: FHD, 1920*1080

  2. Watched label is much more convenient now and takes less space, but I think it's still too bright.

enter image description here

2
7

Can we remove "views"?

With old design there was no problem in not noticing "views", as they were either smaller, or in a separate column.

Now they are distracting from the important information: the votes.

If you are not going to make votes stand out again, maybe as another solution, views removal can be done?

1
  • 4
    For me, and I'm not saying it's the same for everyone else, there's one noticeable advantage keeping the view count, it's the only way I can tell the difference between a new question from a much older one on the home page. Disregarding Qs that have hit the HNQ, a high view count often means the post has been around a while. Feb 8 at 22:57
6

Longer question titles that wrap onto a second line push the tags and author information down. Similarly, the position of the author name and image moves around a lot depending on the length of the date. This makes it harder to glance over the page and see the relevant information, as the position of the information varies a lot:

front-page

Please consider the revising the layout to fix this.

Possible solutions might include some combination of:

  • Clamping the tags and author line to the bottom of the question block.
  • Splitting the author and date onto separate lines.
  • Putting the author image to the right of the author name.
  • Putting the author and date into a separate third column.
2
  • Yes there's room to put the author on one line with their avatar and reputation, and the past participle with the date on another line -- as it was before (except that before it was three lines, now it could be two).
    – ChrisW
    Jan 24 at 22:59
  • 1
    It's unlikely to be adopted, because it seems everyone but me seems to think they're great, but one way to solve the variable width of dates would be getting rid of the relative labels like "yesterday" and just always showing a date and time.
    – IMSoP
    Jan 25 at 16:20
5

I think the new listings are useful for the reasons Ben Kelly explained in the question. But I must say having larger green boxes on the accepted answers was just more attractive visually (even more so on Dark Theme). Is there any chance there can be more surface to the accepted answer? If not can the explanation be pinpointed why that was a problem (because I'm having a hard time following)?

screenshot of active tab on top questions

I have to add: I just find the front page less enjoyable now. We just lost color and the empty space doesn't seem like a good trade-off.

screenshot of post on front page

8
  • 8
    And what happened to the watched tags highlighting?
    – charlietfl
    Jan 24 at 21:35
  • @charlietfl well spotted, I think you should post that as a separate answer.
    – bad_coder
    Jan 24 at 21:37
  • 3
    My understanding is this change is in regards to: "1. An arbitrary, scalable number of stats" meaning, they can add or remove stats from this section to accommodate content types that don't have one of the three or may have a 4th. (articles don't have answers.) I personally find this de-emphasizes rather important information and makes it difficult to parse quickly.
    – Kevin B
    Jan 24 at 21:37
  • @KevinB good points, but I'm getting the impression it's less eye candy and if folks are like me they'll find the front page less enjoyable now...
    – bad_coder
    Jan 24 at 21:40
  • We actually gained color, in that every username now has their avatar (does that mean the page has to load more graphics per load, for a page that previously showed no user avatars?)
    – Kevin B
    Jan 24 at 21:47
  • @KevinB avatar has a much smaller surface than the accepted answer icon used to have...
    – bad_coder
    Jan 24 at 21:47
  • @Kevin small peices of colour everywhere is bad... Jan 26 at 15:01
  • @VScode_fanboy 100% agree, which is why i've suggested in a few places removing them. Going back to the original card would be fine as well
    – Kevin B
    Jan 26 at 15:27
5

Unread questions blend into the tags:

enter image description here

The (unvisited) link color is a visual match to the background of the tags; the height of the title text similarly matches the height of the tags themselves. Combined with the vertically cramped layout, the two elements blend into one indistinct mass that fails to stand out as an unread question.

2
  • What network site is this on? We didn't make any changes to the colors of tags / titles, so this is likely a preexisting issue. You can check against /questions (which has not yet been migrated) to compare.
    – Ben Kelly StaffMod
    Jan 25 at 21:59
  • 1
    This is originally a very old issue: Visited links should be more visible. With this layout it becomes even more of a problem. Jan 26 at 2:42
5


What is the difference between these "Watched" tags? The "eye" icon in the "Watched" tag refers to what?

Screenshot for reference:

Watched tag

1
5

Attempting to highlight the page with my mouse oddly skips various pieces of text. See image.

I'm using macOS 12.1 Monterey and Safari 15.2, both the latest.

I started this drag-highlight somewhere above the first title. Titles below that are not highlighted. Usernames are sometimes not highlighted.

Please make this work normally and as expected.

highlighting items on list

2
  • 3
    Works perfectly fine on Firefox. Jan 27 at 18:48
  • Seems to work fine for me (Chrome 97.0.4692.99, macOS Monterey 12.1) as well. I'm guessing this might be something specific to Safari?
    – V2Blast StaffMod
    Jan 31 at 20:57
5

I only use custom filters to follow tags (I don't use the watch dialogue below it) and usually questions with tags that are in my custom filters had a yellow background in the listings but the highlight isn't showing now (and neither is the watch label which I imagine would be the replacement for it).

This is not the same as this post because it's specific to using custom filters and not just watched tags (I'm also not getting the watched labels).

3
  • 3
    I'm unable to reproduce the issue. From what I can see, custom filters do not apply to the home page, just /questions (which has not changed). Can you give additional steps to reproduce the issue? Maybe we're referring to different things?
    – Ben Kelly StaffMod
    Jan 27 at 16:12
  • @BenKelly I just checked and it's working for me now. It wasn't working between when I wrote this and earlier today.The watched icons are also on the tags now, when I posted it was a separate label as shown in the other screenshot, but it didn't work for the costum filters at the time I posted...
    – bad_coder
    Jan 27 at 21:13
  • 2
    No worries, I may have fixed this issue along with one of the other bugs. I'll mark this as norepro and consider it done.
    – Ben Kelly StaffMod
    Jan 27 at 21:38
5

This hasn't been mentioned yet and I only noticed it today.

On smaller sites I actually know the other users and when I'm scanning the question list I find myself more focused on the username on the right side of the listing than any other element. (This is rarely the case on Stack Overflow where the chance of coming across a user I've seen before is minute.)

So I noticed the username causes more eye strain than the other elements because altough it has 12px font size like the tags, the left side meta data and the timestamp, it does however vary frequently (maybe with each post) while the other elements have fixed text and only rarely do I need to focus on them. (On larger sites the main indicator might be reputation because it tends to have a strong correlation with the possible quality of a question/answer but it's easier to see because it's in bold - and on smaller sites that focus is shifted to the username.)

I'm aware of the wrapping issue (explained under TylerH's post) that having a longer right-side element can cause, however I think a slightly larger font size for the username might have advantages without the drawback of causing a lot of wrapping.

Lastly, I suppose this might be especially relevant for Teams assuming most communities there are small to medium sized and users will tend to know each other by name like on the smaller SE sites.

(I'm linking Karl Knechtel's excellent post here because it helps put this into perspective visually.)

screenshot of question listing with usernames higlighted

1
  • 1
    Well generically, I'd rather see everything 'left' justified, over right justified
    – Journeyman Geek Mod
    Jan 28 at 15:00
4

Possible off-topic here, but this wording could do with some copy-editing:

Questions that have a large amount of views or a large amount of feedback.

Suggest: Questions with a lot of views or feedback.

4
  • 4
    I'll consider this on topic-ish since it is about greatest hits and I did change that wording as part of this change ;). I wrote the copy there and I agree that it could probably use a lookover from a copy editor. That sentence made sense to my developer brain since the check is boolean (large views OR large feedback). Believe it or not, the description now is better than what it used to be, which was most certainly written by a developer... I'll leave it at that.
    – Ben Kelly StaffMod
    Jan 19 at 15:53
  • Btw my main gripe (such as it is), is about the ungainly phrasing "large amount of", usually better written as "much" or "many" etc. (In this case, because it's being applied to both a countable and an uncountable noun, that doesn't really work though...) Jan 19 at 21:52
  • 3
    Yes. Large number of views [countable]; large amount of feedback [uncountable]. Jan 23 at 11:07
  • 1
    @BenKelly I could suggest "Questions with many views or a lot of feedback" -- it's grammatical and uses fewer words than your version and so is more readable. Also, what is "a lot of feedback" -- do you mean "many answers"? Also, you wrote, "Questions with less views than the median (225) are excluded" -- but that should say "fewer", not "less".
    – ChrisW
    Jan 24 at 22:38
4

The alignment is bugging me: elements don't align.

Currently it's like this:

enter image description here

This would be better:

enter image description here

Top-aligning the two would make the title text more readable, instead of the statistics over-dominating -- if you make them equal, balanced, then the eye can read either.

To implement this (moving that left column down a bit), I reckon you'll also want to remove what's currently 6px of margin-bottom from the views.

2
4

The mobile view is irritating

The new post summary design on questions page just arrived to my most-used site, Code Golf and Coding Challenges.

Although my use is primarily from the computer, I occasionally check from my phone. I don't have access to my phone at the moment, but using the Device Emulation feature of the developer console shows the above view for a typical-sized phone. Indeed, this is the view that I was shown this morning when I checked Code Golf and Coding Challenges from my phone.

However, the mobile view that appeared prior to this change was a lot more pleasurable to use. Although the view above is great (comparably) on computers, it certainly is not on mobile, because it looks as though Stack Exchange has tried to cram as much information as possible into a small space. The old mobile view was a lot more simplistic and I found it intuitive.

Therefore, my request is to at least revert the mobile view. If you're not willing to remove the current desktop view (which I'm not fond of either), at least revert the mobile view.

2
  • Viewing tagged questions on S.O. is similarly unpleasant. By the time you add in the "tag" description, the header/options eats up 3/4 of the mobile screen. Leaving only the bottom 1/4 for the actual content! Ugh.
    – SOS
    Feb 9 at 10:16
  • The mobile view is being depreceated, so no chance on that getting back.
    – Luuklag
    Feb 9 at 15:26
3

Inconsistent capitalisation post summary tooltip

The post summary tooltip (in which some are missing) have inconsistent capitalisation.

I'd expect every tooltip to start with a capital letter, as for example, the navigation menu already does.


Some tooltips regarding the UX change do not start with a capital letter:

Bounty

example image bounty


User reputation

example image user reputaion

2
  • 2
    These titles match what exists currently (see unmigrated /questions view as an example). Marking as bydesign for now, this is something that can be revisited later if there is demand for it.
    – Ben Kelly StaffMod
    Jan 25 at 17:07
  • 4
    For reference, I think these should eventually be changed to have sentence case capitalization; I'm guessing the original tooltips were created before Stacks made the design philosophy consistent in that regard.
    – V2Blast StaffMod
    Jan 26 at 0:12
3

On iOS 14 Safari spaces separating user icons, names, reputation and last action suddenly disappeared and now everything looks glued together:

screenshot

This seems like a regression considering that on Feb 7 (4 days ago) spaces were present: screenshot.

4
  • 2
    We’ve switched to the gap property from margin for the flex layout which gives us a lot more control over layout, regardless of what info or which order we put it in. Safari's support for the gap property was first supported in Safari 14.1 on October 20, 2020. While our official browser support doesn’t have us supporting Safari 14 at all, we waited to adopt gap until we were well into iOS 15 release cycle. Given the aggressive upgrade numbers in the Apple ecosystem, we made the call to move ahead on gap. Feb 11 at 16:12
  • 2
    @AaronShekey your browser support only spans less than six months? What... well OK then I guess you can mark this as [status-bydesign]. Feb 11 at 16:31
  • @MarcoBonelli: As noted on the page Aaron linked: "Stacks supports the last two stable versions of each major browser. If your browser doesn’t appear in this list, it still may work, but with a degraded experience."
    – V2Blast StaffMod
    Feb 14 at 16:35
  • @V2Blast yeah, that's crystal clear. I'm just baffled that the browser support is so short-lived. As I said, feel free to retag as [status-bydesign]. Feb 14 at 16:42
2

Not a bug with visible consequences, but the reputation score <span> element doesn't have a proper class:

<span class="todo-no-class-here" title="reputation score " dir="ltr">2,783</span>
1

For those who are more interested in content but Meta: Tampermonkey is your friend.

// ==UserScript==
// @name         Stackoverflow: Clean Start Page
// @namespace    http://ceving/
// @version      0.1
// @description  Remove useless stuff.
// @author       ceving
// @match        https://stackoverflow.com/
// @grant        GM_addStyle
// ==/UserScript==

(function() {
    'use strict';
    GM_addStyle('.s-post-summary--stats { display: none; }');
    GM_addStyle('.s-post-summary { display: list-item; margin-left: 1.5em; padding: 0; border: none; }');
    GM_addStyle('.s-user-card.s-user-card__minimal { display: none; }');
    GM_addStyle('.s-post-summary--meta { display: none; }');
    GM_addStyle('.s-post-summary--content .s-post-summary--content-title { display: inline; margin-bottom: 0; padding-right: 0; }');
})();
5
  • 6
    This resolves which specific issue?
    – charlietfl
    Jan 25 at 18:09
  • 2
    I payed for every single pixel on my display. I have no idea, why I must not use them all for something useful but empty space or useless stuff.
    – ceving
    Jan 26 at 7:46
  • 1
    I have no idea in which way the name of an avatar helps to answer a question.
    – ceving
    Jan 26 at 7:57
  • 3
    Re "Remove useless stuff": Can you be more specific? Can you provide an explanation and/or a screenshot (with a frame and freehand circles) of what this is supposed to do? Jan 26 at 13:09
  • @This_is_NOT_a_forum I have answered your question but my comment was once again censored without notice.
    – ceving
    Feb 10 at 17:42

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