Improvements requested

BROUGHT FORWARD with slight modifications
OVER TWENTY IMPROVEMENTS needed to make the site much more pleasant to use.
In no special Order of importance then -
.

1 Improve Track Changes

  • REMOVE our own entries from CHANGES TRACKER, which are duplicated in ACTIVITY TRACKER. Only display the last change to the same Observation (if there are several)

1a. Retain Yellow marker

until the specific post has been visited

2 Allow Edit of Comments

  • until locked by Reply

3 Refresh the Home Page

  • Add a running Welcome banner which changes when ‘things’ are not right. Add strong links to RECENT OBS and START HERE (New Pages?). Tidy up and remove stale notices. Add a large Picture of the Month (NOT competitive?).

4 Update all Help Pages

  • create an Index

5 Rationalise Global

  • currently, it means two things in iSpot, ALL Communities or those not UK.
    EXCLUDE Other named Communities from GLOBAL or include them all - make it plain which.

6 Retain Locations somehow

  • allow users to creature their own Index (Home, Mill, Foxton Wood, etc) thus saving the laborious need to enter location details every single time.

7 Allow HTML Text

to be retained in descriptions (projects mostly) through Edits. Allow restricted HTML text in comments and Ob. descriptions, but particularly <a ref and so avoid terribly, sometimes over-spillingly long, URLs

8 Improve Search

  • allow a specific search for Observations (find all Obs (only) of Phytolacca acinosa for example) And for precise occurrences like “gooseneck”

9 Update dictionaries

  • this is imperative as we observe more and more rare varieties and the Dictionaries get more and more OUT-DATED

10 Bring back Social Points

shows those who engage with users or the system or add agreements to be seen as ‘valuable’ as those with high Score Icons

11 Sort Enlarge Picture

remove Zoom? Allow Cycling through Observation pictures when enlarged

12 Next & Previous buttons

  • bring back Next and Previous clicks when browsing Carousels or Filters

13 Fix the Reputations algorithm.

Where sometimes the score rating is not balanced - may apply mostly to Experts and Knowledgeables

14 Modify quizzes,

REMOVE, test, revise and replace the Quizzes

15 Allow Pages search

in Project Gallery view - ;‘Go to Page 9’, say. Some Project galleries have over 40 pages. The same applies to the map, we have to click Show More Observations as many times as there are ‘thousands’ to get the final number of Obs.

16 Allow us to Follow

(and UNfollow, a user

17 Allow PREVIEW

of Observation detail before ‘publishing’

18 Devise ways to capture & nurture newcomers

  • linked to Items 3 and 16 (above)

19 Review the way Changes links take us to Comments,

so that the link takes us TO the comment.
Perhaps Colour the relevant Panel in the old way.

20 Add a more powerful banner

to the Home & Uload Page PLEASE CHECK YOUR CHANGES TRACKER FRQUENTLY : also HERE https://www.ispotnature.org/communities/uk-and-ireland/view/article/566/ispot-help-and-support

21 Disallow Refresh

(or modify to return to open page) after an agreement is added specially during next and previous process. SPEED UP refresh anyway

22

Anyone can add to this list with a note below (please)

22?

How might you feel if Personal Messaging was available?

could be useful - often come across useful ID guides, blogs etc that I know a couple of other users might be interested in, but only way to contact them is to comment on a relevant ID or reference then in a post on the Forum (perhaps we could have a Message Board on Forum??)

I suspect the absence of personal messages was a deliberate decision - it means that the OU don’t have to worry (as much) about grooming, bullying and harassment. (Am I right in thinking PMs are turned off on the forum as well.)

A halfway house would be thank and like buttons on observations, identifications and comments. A thank button would let you express appreciation without cluttering up everyone else’s changes tracker, but a lack of user control on text content makes it hard to abuse.

[quote=“lavateraguy, post:17, topic:576”]
deliberate decision[/quote]
In some of the forums I know, PMs work quite well (I must say it works very well in iNat) They are open to abuse but they can be reported and blocked and the sender can be ‘punished’.
Few people are using Like here (Forum), probably because it’s a :heart:. A thanks button would probably be a good idea in the main site - maybe a :heart: would be OK for that! I would be against a score system - showing how many thanks a person has received.
A message board (PM system) in the Forum (Jo) is a good idea but I suspect that only 11 of 20000 ‘frequent’ users come here or know of its existence!
We could have a switch-on/-off personal message system - if we don’t want to get PMs, switch it off perhaps on sometimes?.
It’s all a bit academic at the mo because we need so many more important things! If we EVER get some of those we could consider refinements or luxuries.
Thanks for repondin’ :heart:

1 Like

Back when I joined iSpot (2007/8 ish) I discussed this with the then iSpot team and it was a a deliberate decision. With no way to directly and privately contact members it was thought it would be safer for allowing children to access it and that parents would be more comfortable letting them do so. As a key part of iSpot’s purpose was supporting people just starting out learning about natural history this was seen as very desirable. Personally I feel it still is.

I’m not sure I see a value in a personal contact option here (and there has been at least one individual in the past who I am very keen has no method of contacting me in person) since it is focused on identifications and they work best done in public.

1 Like

VERY valuable David and thanks. I am quite happy to accept this either way but it will require only ONE bad incident to bring it into disrepute. - I have seen some bad stuff even in Comments
I will leave it OFF the ‘request’ list until we next have a discussion - it all seems a bit academic, if not futile, at the mo,.

May I respectfully request more dynamic Curation @miked ?
I will not be long before someone as keen as me will have to go through Projects and Inappropriate the inappropriates, just to get to the Appropriates.
I understand the need for kindness, decency and encouragement but real action is required - please?

it looks if as the existence of misapplied projects (where observations should have been used) is misleading new users into making the same mistake.

It would be better if the people involved were engaged, rather than relying on curation.

Not in these recent cases (if you look) - they seem to be Fire-and-forgetters. One post, no idea how to get back, so retreat to Facebook (I suppose)
The project area is not unduly cluttered with these (two have recently gone) and the rest are probably a temporary glitch but I am not retreating from my ‘request’ for firmer Curation.
I am embroiled in helping to remove several hundred historic Observations with no picture and no hope - at one-at-a-time it is a frustrating task.
When ‘engagement’ fails, the Curator has their home email addresses “thanks for your recent post in iSpot Projects but…” etc…

@miked - thanks for action…

BROUGHT FORWARD again and EDITED 12 October

OVER TWENTY IMPROVEMENTS needed to make the site much more pleasant to use.

In no special Order of importance then -
.

1 Improve Track Changes

REMOVE our own entries from CHANGES TRACKER, which are duplicated in ACTIVITY TRACKER. Only display the last change to the same Observation (if there are several)

1a Retain ‘Unread’ (currently yellow) marker

until the specific post has been visited

2 Allow Edit of Comments

until locked by Reply

3 Refresh the Home Page

Add a running Welcome banner which changes when ‘things’ are not right. Add strong links to RECENT OBS and START HERE (New Pages?). Tidy up and remove stale notices. Add a large Picture of the Month (NOT competitive?).

4 Update all Help Pages

create an Index

5 Rationalise Global

currently, it means two things in iSpot, ALL Communities or those not UK.
EXCLUDE Other named Communities from GLOBAL or include them all - make it plain which.

6 Retain Locations somehow

allow users to creature their own Index (Home, Mill, Foxton Wood, etc) thus saving the laborious need to enter location details every single time.

7 Allow HTML Text

to be retained in descriptions (projects mostly) through Edits. Allow restricted HTML text in comments and Ob. descriptions, but particularly <a ref and so avoid terribly, sometimes over-spillingly long, URLs

8 Improve Search

allow a specific search for Observations (find all Obs (only) of Phytolacca acinosa for example) And for precise occurrences like “gooseneck”

9 Update dictionaries

this is imperative as we observe more and more rare varieties and the Dictionaries get more and more OUT-DATED

10 Bring back Social Points

shows those who engage with users or the system or add agreements to be seen as ‘valuable’ as those with high Score Icons

11 Sort Enlarge Picture

remove Zoom? Allow Cycling through Observation pictures when enlarged

12 Next & Previous buttons

bring back Next and Previous clicks when browsing Carousels or Filters

13 Fix the Reputations algorithm.

Where sometimes the score rating is FAR from logical and in ERROR - may apply mostly to Experts and Knowledgeables

14 Modify quizzes,

REMOVE, test, revise and replace the Quizzes

15 Allow Pages search

in Project Gallery view - ;‘Go to Page 9’, say. Some Project Galleries have over 40 pages, requiring over 40 refreshes to get to the FIRST occurrences. The same applies to the map, we have to click Show More Observations as many times as there are ‘thousands’ to get the final number of Obs. The Changes & Activity Trackers already have this feature. [your-ispot/activity-changes?page=6]

16 Allow us to Follow

(and UNfollow), a user

17 Allow PREVIEW

of Observation detail before ‘publishing’

18 Devise ways to capture & nurture newcomers

linked to Items 3 and 16 (above)

19 Review the way Changes links take us to Comments,

so that the link takes us TO the comment.
Perhaps Colour the relevant Panel in the old way.

20 Add a more powerful banner

to the Home & Uload Page PLEASE CHECK YOUR CHANGES TRACKER FRQUENTLY : also HERE https://www.ispotnature.org/communities/uk-and-ireland/view/article/566/ispot-help-and-support

21 Disallow Refresh

for some operations (or modify to return to Previous page, NOT the beginning) after an agreement is added, specially during next and previous process. SPEED UP refresh anyway

22 Add-to-Project Button

Like Add to Favourites, Follow/UnFollow user, this would be a really useful too

23

suggestions for additions please?
AND I would like to consider the ORDER in which these might now appear - from urgent, essential to desirable…
I frequently send this list to Admin staff, so they always have it to hand at Budget meetings.

What about ‘Add to project’ facility?

Click and we’re asked ‘which Project?’
It should be ONLY your own.
I have come across LOADS of good observations that serve my purpose
A flag goes to the Author, who can DEselect if required.

I am quite determined to keep this Thread high on the RED FLAG LIST

Require fewer clicks (currently 3, with a page display in the middle) to get to Changes Tracker - e.g. put it in the Your iSpot popup menu.

Please restore the ability to store location details. I’ve created a memo with site names and OS locations, but I don’t want to have to store, then cut-and-paste, the site descriptions every time. I’ve given up on them for recognised reserves, assuming that interested parties will google the site name.

Is the Item 6 - yes?

Like this? but leads ONLY to Changes by others? and is linked to Item 1 in the List.
Perhaps Changes should be the Default Start-up page (which can be changed to one or two personal preferences)?
Also (for goodness’s sake!) REMOVE Tab Quiz and put it in Explore.

Yes, sorry: caffeine not yet absorbed into the system…

endorse all of the above please please please please please