Newbie Wants To Read All of Cnference

Please suggest the best way for a newbie to read all the the threads/topics (well decide if he/she wants to read them [I ain’t interested in “six Feet Under” or “The Sopranos”] in a conference.

The problem is that if you keep last posst as the way in which the threads are ordered it will keep changing. Also one will freqently find oneself on the first page of a conference.

Hmmm… not exactly sure what you’re asking. By “conference” do you mean a forum, like “About This Message Board,” a thread, like this one- “Newbie Wants To Read All of Conference,” or the board as a whole?

Do you want to read threads only on a certain subject? Or are you trying to eliminate certain subjects?

And while the thread list of each forum is sorted by “Last Post,” you can change that to have it sort by Thread Title, Number of Replies, etc, by clicking on the word at the very top of the table. E.g. Click “Relpies” to have it display the forum giving the thread with the most replies at the top.

To answer my own question.

i guess the best way to go through a forum (I am used to conference from "Baen’s Bar [Shameless Plug]) one should chane the sort to “Thread Starter” in “ascending” order.

To answer my own question.

i guess the best way to go through a forum (I am used to conference from "Baen’s Bar [Shameless Plug]) one should change the sort to “Thread Starter” in “ascending” order.

Why don’t you just read the last few days’ worth of threads? You’re most likely to find the most updated information and comments in those threads.

The problem with reading threads by Thread Starter is if you decide to reply to a thread, you might respond to one that’s months or even years old. The mods (and other posters, for that matter) prefer that you don’t do this. There is a statement on this in the Posting FAQ:

The same would apply even if you didn’t read about a thread in a recent thread.

Most people read threads sorted by Last Post, so if you post to an old thread, it gets temporarily shifted to the top of the forum, and people will see it among the newer threads. Chances are if the thread’s old, so is the subject matter. So seeing the old thread resurrected may cause confusion-- why is such an old thread on an old topic being “bumped” for some random comment?

If you find an old thread on a topic that you want to post to, first try searching to see if someone’s started a more recent thread on the subject. If not you can feel free to start a new one yourself, and link to the old one.

It would be nice to be able to go through a conference by looking at the yhread contents page by saying give me all threads which were first posted N days ago and showing date of last post, I feel I can decide if it would be better to revive the thread or start a new one.

I’m not following you, there, Isaac. How is this different from what the board currently does by default?

And if you mean to read an entire forum, let me warn you that that’s just plain not possible. It’s not against the rules or anything like that, but most fora here get new posts faster than any single person could possibly read them, and even if all new posts stopped, we’ve still got about four years of posts accumulated. Just worry about the recent stuff, with maybe a search for older relevant threads when you’re going to start a new thread.

I think I see what your problem is. Every time you go to the main forum page, you get an updated list. This keeps you perpetually reading the same posts at the top of the page, etc.

What I do is open one window with the forum list. Then open a second window for reading the threads. I copy and paste the thread url into the second window and read it there. For the next thread, I go back to the forum window and copy the next thread link. I then do this going down the page until I get to the bottom. If I want to go to page two, I hit the button at the bottom and pull up forum page two in the forum window, then skip the first couple of threads that are carryovers because other threads have gone to the top, and pick up where I left off. This method works sufficiently. If I get through the end of the ones displayed (last day only, say) and still want to read more in that forum, I use the feature that allows you to pick a longer time window and pull up more older threads, then scroll down to where I left off.

If I’m trying to catch up on all the recent posts in, say, Comments on Cecil’s Columns that have occurred while I haven’t been around to read them, I’ll start at the bottom of the list with the last thread I read when I was last here (I have to do a little hunting to determine which it is if I don’t remember the date), and then read them going up the page instead of down from the top. This has the advantage that if I quit before making it to the top, I can find where I left off and begin again, still going in order from last date I read. And then refresh the forum list when I get near the top.

Irishman, I’m curious: why do you copy the URL and then paste it into the second window? Maybe I’m missing something, but that seems like more work than the way I do it: right-click on the thread link and select “open in new window”.

Because open in new window always opens it’s own new window. Pasting in the open window keeps the same window open.

My impression of how computers work and resource allocation is that each time you open and close a window, a small part of the memory assigned for that window gets reserved and not returned for use. Eventually, processing slows down, and you have to reboot. Delaying that reboot is useful to me. Copying to an open window instead of closing and opening windows seems to delay the reboot.