New discourse Home page design

We just upgraded to the latest version of discourse, which has new Home page design. Basically, the categories are on the left and a running list of topics is on the right. I wasn’t 100% happy with the design, so I made a few tweaks. Anyway, express your feelings!

I like the previous design. It allowed for discussions/threads to arise and pass away within their own topics. :confused:

Yes, I’m not particularly invested one way or the other. But then, no-one likes change!

If you want to see the justification for the new design, you can read about it here. One of the nice things about Discourse is that they use their own platform in public to drive development with the community.

Not very happy with this change either. Just makes the FB posts look worse by showing a big picture of the discourse home page … or just showing a blank screen (guess that is emptiness). Maybe because we do not often have pictures on the site and more discussions.

Ven. Sujato,

i saw your thread about integrating discourse discussion threads directly into sutta central’s suttas from the side bar. i can’t find that thread anymore, so i’ll ask my question here.

is there something similar for pali terms that we can tag with a keyword that would automatically link to the suttas in the SC collection? for example,
i see recent threads on parimukha, sabbattataya, etc. that would extremely useful. we can cite some specific suttas in to link to to particular suttas, but better yet would be a keyword to link it to sutta central’s dictionary so that any sutta that has any form of parimukha for example could have a link to that discussion thread.

my feedback on changes to sc discourse front end appearance and interface. go ahead and do whatever, i’ve simply surrendered and peacefully accepted the fact that every thing, gmail, google’s user interface, windows 10, android, they all keep changing every few months. we just have to stay sharp and be ready to survive in the jungle of samsara.


I’m also not so happy. Only one disucssion topic shows up per category now, so it’s not possible to quickly check to see recent activity (e.g. new discussions or comments). I like to be able quickly and easily check that page and usually catch any new activity I want to look at. But now I’d have to open evey category separtely which I won’t do nearly as often.

Hi @Linda,

If you have tracking on for all categories (or all that you are interested in) then the “Latest” listing is probably all you need.

I’m not sure how it’s set up at the moment, but I found I had to add the traching of categories manually under my preferences to get the indications of numbers of unread posts and so on.

Thanks Mike though I’m not sure exactly what you mean. I don’t want to get e-mails for all the various discussions in which I’m interested. In fact I’m getting too many now, which is a new thing so I’m not even sure what has changed (or what I may have inadvertently changed). I’m afraid I’m not very technically inclined… my preference is just to be able to quickly click on the site and see the last few discussions (new and recent replies) in each topic so I can easily see what’s new and what I might want to check/open. I’d rather not get discussion replies to my inbox unless someone sends me a personal message (or replies directly to me in a post), which is then fine.

Anyway, guess I’ll just have to deal with however it ends up and just check the site much less frequently and when I have time to go throug the vairous categories.

Interesting idea, complicated though. how do we link from translations of terms to the discussion? There are possibilities, let me think about it and I may add it as something to be explored.


I’m not sure exactly what you’re referring to.

To be clear, currently on the Home page we now see a list of categories on the left, and a list of updated topics on the right. The difference from before is that these are not related. In the past, we saw about three topic per category, now we see whatever topics are being discussed, regardless of category.

The purpose of the change, as I understand it, was precisely to allow a more quick check of what was being discussed.

But if i understand you correctly, you prefer the previous system where you see a few topics per category, am I correct? I’ll see if there’s a way of bringing back that option.

I just checked, and it looks like the old system is dead and gone, i’m afraid. So essentially we have two choices:

  1. Categories with list of topics (as it is now)
  2. Just a list of topics

Actually option 2 is the standard default, which is something we discussed long ago. The reason for having categories on the Home page is really to assist newcomers, because a straight list of topics can be a little bewildering. At least with the categories they can get a sense of what is happening here.

Thanks for your reply. All I know is I now click on the link that used to show the discussion topics (categories–yes, I agree they are helpful) down one side and then the most recent activity (about 3 or so topics) on the right side by each category. Now there’s only one discussion/updated topic (most recent I guess) per category listed unless I go and click on each category separately, so it’s not easy to at a glance, on one page, get an idea of recent activity (except for the absolute most recent post per category).

Maybe I’m on a totally different page than what you’re talking about, but it’s just the same main page I’ve always gone to ever since I joined discourse. I just did a screen grab of how it shows up for me now in case I’m not explaining clearly.

Okay, I see what you mean, we’re on the same page, metaphorically and literally!

But I think you’re misunderstanding what’s on this page. There is no relation between the left and right sides, nor is there any set number of topics per category.

The list on the right is simply the latest posts, irrespective of whatever category they’re in.


You’re right, now I see that in the new way the list on the right is not even related to the list on the left–sorry, I didn’t even realize that. Thanks for pointing it out (guess I just saw the new format and ‘checked out’ metaphorically speaking…)

But in the old way, they were related and there were 3 or so of the latest topics (e.g. new discussion or the most recent reply in an exisiting discussion) per category. That was really helpful as I could easily & quickly see with one click what was going on (in terms of most recent activity) in each category, especially because some categories I’m more interested in than others. So I guess that’s the old way that can’t be brought back? Sigh… okay then, if so I’ll have to deal with it.

I agree, I don’t think it’s a great design, for exactly this reason. In fact, i pointed this out over on the Discourse boards, and have made some changes to the layout to try to distinguish the two sides. Still, what to do? Maybe just go to the default latest topics list?

Hi Linda,

I don’t get any emails (perhaps I turned off that option). I just have tracking on all categories, and get the following when I go to “Latest”. As you can see, it tells me how many unread posts there are in each thread:

Ha, I didn’t actually notice that, since I usually just go straight to “Latest”.

In fact, this change makes going to “Latest” somewhat redundant. Hmmm…

OK thanks. I’ll play around some day when I have more time and see what will work best for me, though I suspect it’ll mean I’m now not checking Discourse as often :frowning: I need a brain transplant to be more adept at keeping up with technological changes. I jsut find it difficult… I must be somehow in a time warp, perhaps stuck in a past life when computers didn’t even exist.

Thanks again Mike. I see what you mean. I guess I need to figure out how to turn on tracking but e-mail off (which I don’t want, and I don’t even recall ever turning on and it’s only lately that I’m getting so many posts via e-mail). Guess I need to adopt the attitude that @frankk (and probably you & others) have

i’ve simply surrendered and peacefully accepted the fact that every thing, gmail, google’s user interface, windows 10, android, they all keep changing every few months. we just have to stay sharp and be ready to survive in the jungle of samsara.

But then I haven’t even mastered the basics, but then I survive with an extremely simple life technically (and in other ways, at least where possible), i.e. no portable devices, just my desktop computer (hard-wired, or whatever the term is, i.e. no wi-fi) and a land line for my phone, LOL.

Hi Linda,

That’s quite easy. You click on your avatar at top right, then on the preferences icon on the right and scroll down to near the bottom, where you can turn off the email notifications.

It seems that to turn watching on for categories you have to go to each category and turn it on (at the top right). However, I may have overlooked something…

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