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z929669

Purposeful Save as Draft (autosave already included)

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Yeah, Lazarus works. I just prefer not to have in there since it doesn't take but a second to copy and paste the bbcode and text from the post in notepad and it look exactly like it does on the site without needing to add another plugin to Firefox.

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Hate to burst your bubble, but this functionality already exists in the form of auto saves. For what ever reason, If what you were typing is not available and you go back to the thread to reply, it will ask you if you want to restore your last saved draft.

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Not really. I just tried it by starting two posts: one in quick reply and one in standard reply. Once I leave the page after beginning a post, no autosave prompts me to restore my 'draft' upon return ... autosaved draft does not exist.

 

If there is a certaijn timeout requirement, it would be good to know what that is for testing to verify, but regardless, If one cannot recover editor text after accidently moving away, then that is still an issue (save should also be invoke-able via "save as draft" button, which is the whole point of "save as draft" functionality)

 

Also, Lazarus does not appear to work as far as I can tell :/ I am not sure how to invoke/trigger Lazarus ....

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Yes, really.

 

Auto-saves occur every two minutes. When the editor auto saves, you will see text in the bottom bar that states "Last auto saved: XX:XX:XX PM". They are also associated at the thread level.

 

You can test by typing something and waiting until you see the text. Then navigate to another thread and start typing and wait for the auto save to occur. Then go back to the first thread, and you will see text in the bottom bar that says "View Auto Saved Content", and you can restore the "draft" that you were working on for that thread. Same thing at this point, go to the second thread and you will be able to restore your last saved draft for that thread.

 

The functionality is there, and it's even better that it's automated. If you really need to work up a draft, offline is a better method. Consequently, this is similar to desktop applications that auto-save content at set intervals so it can be restored should the application crash, or be force closed. There just is no need for a manual Save-as Draft.

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If that is true, it is convenient; however, the "purposefully save as draft" feature is nonetheless missing, and I often require less than 2 minutes to begin composing something and need to move away. In these cases, a "save as draft" button would be quite useful. otherwise, users must wait if and only if they know about the autosave functionality (which is NOT intuitive at all.

 

Less than ideal, so this is still a 'wanted' feature. Re-tagging topic :P

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Story time: I just went afk after having started to write a reply on the forum, the "last autosave" prompt did appear, yet when I came back and refreshed the page by mistake, my message was gone.

 

So yeah, that auto save function doesn't look that perfect...

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@Z

That is why education is key. You now know the feature is there, and it is worth making a sticky of it so that the community is aware. The only non-intuitive piece of it is not knowing about it without hitting the first 2 minute auto-save point. Having a manual form of auto-save could also allow a baddie to spam it across the forum to build up useless data, and/or spam the web server. The only way to prevent that would be to limit the frequency in which such a manual process could be performed. Having an automated save alleviates the need to do that, is consistent, and works everywhere, all the time. This is not a desktop application, this is a web interface that supports multiple users.

 

@CJ

You need to click in the quick reply box to engage the editor for the message to show up that Saved Content is available.

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I have to disagree that the default autosave feature is sufficient. It is a decent net for rare occasions when someone stumbles upon it, but it does not replace the purposeful save as draft. As far as teaching it, I am not even familiar with it, as it has not been useful or apparent to me as yet (and as much as I post, it would appear then to be all but useless to me and hence to at least a sub-sample of others). It is a "safety feature" so it does not need to be taught if it works as intended. The poster is simply "pleasantly surprised" that their post was recalled (regardless of how it worked). If anyone finds it helpful, that is great, and it is great for those that fall into the small group of applicable users. Save as draft still is more clear, succinct and inherently useful for reasons outside of "saving one's butt". Both are valid functions for very different situations.

 

A valid function is whatever users say it is.

 

I also am not worried about spammers using a save as draft feature .... if they even get in here, the problem has already occurred, and they can post spam without any assistance from a save draft feature. The multiquote feature could be argued against for similar reasons and yet we have that. Not sure how a save as draft could be validly construed as a security breach. It is valid functionality for any forum application (desktop versus web argument makes no difference ... 'boxes' were made to be broken ;) ).

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I've personally found the auto-save feature more than sufficient. Being aware of it's behavior does help, and that just takes knowledge sharing.

 

Though I have to say, I'm having a hard time believing that one can generate so much content in less than two minutes, that needing to save a draft manually is actually "that" beneficial. Such content could easily be recreated.

 

But, the other problem is you look at things like this purely from a user perspective. The mention of multi-quote is not a valid comparison, as that is purely a client side function until you initiate the reply (cookies keep track of selected posts). Editor saves uses Ajax to send data to the server, and saves the data in the database. The problem with that is a bad guy could script that easily to initiate manual saves in tons of threads without ever leaving any trace of spam on the forum. The auto-save feature prevents that from happening because it can't be forced. Again, the only way to prevent said behavior would be to limit the frequency in which manual saves can be performed. Get too many users doing it at once, and suddenly you can't manually save, and hence loss of user functionality. Granted, such a problem would only be problematic with higher levels of users being logged in potentially writing posts, and then a small portion of them wanting to manually save them. But it's still a dangerous feature without safeguards. Cost to benefit ratio is very low IMO.

 

In any case, I highly doubt any traction will be made on it becoming a feature, so I suggest getting used to the behavior of auto-save. It truly is useful when you are aware of it.

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Good points ... nevertheless. Implementation is possible, and it is a wanted feature, as mentioned by several others on an adjacent thread (that is why I started this ... it prevents recurrence of the same question over and over again as OT posts on other topics).

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