[23-AUG-2012] New e-mail notification system implemented on BLF [Updated: 01-OCT-2012]

51 posts / 0 new
Last post

Pages

sb56637
sb56637's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 53 min ago
Joined: 01/08/2010 - 09:29
Posts: 6235
Location: The Light
[23-AUG-2012] New e-mail notification system implemented on BLF [Updated: 01-OCT-2012]

 

Or, in other words, "I'm a terrible programmer!".  Tongue Out  You've probably noticed my plethora of "test" posts recently. After hundreds and hundreds of iterations and many blunders and false starts and dead-end roads, I think we now have in place a custom-made e-mail notification system that we can all be proud of.

The previous system was pretty bad. It sent one notification for every new comment. Many of our users would wake up to find 80 messages in their inbox-- the majority from 1 single thread. Additionally, the system constantly got "jammed" and would throw up ugly error messages and fail to send any notifications at all. So I finally bit the bullet, and learned how to code a bit in PHP, and we now have a significantly better system that won't send you more notifications until you come back to the thread.

To receive e-mail updates for new posts on any thread, just click the "Click to Subscribe" link in the bottom right corner of the first post in the thread. There are also personal settings to automatically subscribe you to every thread you participate in, and to enable/disable all notification emails with one click. By default, all users will be automatically subscribed and will receive email updates. You can set your personal preferences here:

http://budgetlightforum.com/user/ under Edit -> Subscriptions

One very important point: You must make sure to check the Spam folder in your e-mail and mark any BLF notifications as "Not Spam" , since the new BLF notification message seems to be detected as Spam quite frequently.

Please note that the "You are not watching this post, click to start watching" link no longer works for e-mail updates. The list of threads that you have tagged with this system are still available for now, but will probably be removed in the near future. I will give everyone ample warning before disabling the old post watching system.

Please carefully observe the behavior of the new system, and report any anomalies here. But please don't use this thread for "test" posts. Feel free to open a separate "test" thread if desired. 

Thanks to everyone for their patience! Have fun.


Update: 26-AUG-2012

I just made some updates to the system to fix two serious issues that were reported to me via PM.

Please note that the method for configuring your personal preferences has changed. The option to disable all subscription emails and the option to disable automatic subscriptions are now located in your user account settings, under the “Edit” tab in the “Subscriptions” section. Anybody who previously changed those settings will need to do so again. Sorry for the inconvenience!


 Update: 11-SEP-2012

  • Identified and fixed an important bug that was preventing some users from receiving notification e-mails in threads with more than 10 subscribers.
  • Identified and fixed a bug where multiple comments in a thread would result in multiple notifications being sent out if the first post was featured on the frontpage.

Update: 24-SEP-2012

  • Identified and fixed another bug. The system was mistakenly sending a notification for every comment in a poll thread, instead of checking to see if the user already received a notification.

 


 

Update: 01-OCT-2012

 

  • Made a small change to the message header to avoid it being detected as spam.

 

Budget Light Forum ...where Frugal meets with Flashlight!

Edited by: sb56637 on 05/18/2017 - 15:30
HBomb
HBomb's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 10 months ago
Joined: 06/13/2011 - 16:39
Posts: 770
Location: USA

Thanks SB! You’re the best.

texaspyro
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 1 month ago
Joined: 04/29/2011 - 12:43
Posts: 4593

Many, MANY thanks for the new feature. It makes life a whole lot more enjoyable.

And now that you have honed your PHP skills to a fine edge, can you code me up a Hallie Berry clone? :bigsmile:

garrybunk
garrybunk's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 hours 47 min ago
Joined: 10/31/2011 - 09:25
Posts: 6044
Location: Johnstown, PA
Thanks SO MUCH SB!!! This will make my inbox so much cleaner! Keep up the good work!

-Garry

My Bike Lights Thread, Optics (TIR) Comparison Beamshots, Diffusion Techniques


NOTE: Moving my photos from PhotoBucket to Flickr. PM me or post in the thread if you can’t see my images and need me to fix or send a gallery link. PhotoBucket images should remain visible until November 2018.
fishinfool
fishinfool's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 5 months ago
Joined: 03/09/2010 - 00:30
Posts: 4342
Location: Hilo, Hawaii

        

 

 

Don wrote:

"But as I said long ago, you are more likely to be killed by a dead fish dropped by a seagull in the Sahara Desert than by a lithium ion

apt323
apt323's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 day 4 hours ago
Joined: 03/19/2012 - 20:18
Posts: 1506
Location: North Texas

Its a great thing! But the extra emails in my inbox make me fill important!!!! Crying

JK

sb56637
sb56637's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 53 min ago
Joined: 01/08/2010 - 09:29
Posts: 6235
Location: The Light

Thanks to everyone for saying “thanks”! My pleasure.

In addition to the fact that the new system works better, it’s also much simpler for me to maintain and fix, because I hacked it together myself. Wink It satisfies the slightly obsessive compulsive side of my personality to know exactly what each line of code does.

As for the old “Watcher” system, I disabled its e-mail functionality and left the system in place for the time being for those who use it for bookmarking. What do you think? Should we keep it around for bookmarks? Does anybody use it still? If possible I’d like to get rid of it completely, and maybe add a page that links to all of the user’s subscribed posts.

Budget Light Forum ...where Frugal meets with Flashlight!

garrybunk
garrybunk's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 hours 47 min ago
Joined: 10/31/2011 - 09:25
Posts: 6044
Location: Johnstown, PA

sb56637 wrote:
As for the old "Watcher" system, I disabled its e-mail functionality and left the system in place for the time being for those who use it for bookmarking. What do you think? Should we keep it around for bookmarks? Does anybody use it still? If possible I'd like to get rid of it completely, and maybe add a page that links to all of the user's subscribed posts.

I have still been using the "My Watched Posts" section (if this is what you mean), but mainly because when browsing with my iPhone it was disabling the email alerts.  I do occasionally look back to find a thread (usually if I can't find it quicker from a "search").  What is the difference of the "new page idea" of linking to all of a user's subscribed posts?  How is that different? 

Thanks,
-Garry

My Bike Lights Thread, Optics (TIR) Comparison Beamshots, Diffusion Techniques


NOTE: Moving my photos from PhotoBucket to Flickr. PM me or post in the thread if you can’t see my images and need me to fix or send a gallery link. PhotoBucket images should remain visible until November 2018.
sb56637
sb56637's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 53 min ago
Joined: 01/08/2010 - 09:29
Posts: 6235
Location: The Light
garrybunk wrote:
What is the difference of the “new page idea” of linking to all of a user’s subscribed posts?  How is that different? 

Thanks,
-Garry

Basically, the “Watched Posts” system has a separate link (in green, below the first post) to bookmark a thread, but it is no longer responsible for sending new post notifications. The new system was devised principally for sending post update e-mails, but now that it’s in place I can easily build on it to create a personal “My subscribed posts” page.

Budget Light Forum ...where Frugal meets with Flashlight!

garrybunk
garrybunk's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 hours 47 min ago
Joined: 10/31/2011 - 09:25
Posts: 6044
Location: Johnstown, PA

Oh, so clicking the "you are not watching this post" to turn green will now not send out email alerts to updates on those posts.  So right now we have to respond to the thread in order to get email alerts?  I was using that button to follow (i.e. get email alerts) threads of interest without posting.  Will you be coming up with a button to activate the new system to send alerts?

-Garry

My Bike Lights Thread, Optics (TIR) Comparison Beamshots, Diffusion Techniques


NOTE: Moving my photos from PhotoBucket to Flickr. PM me or post in the thread if you can’t see my images and need me to fix or send a gallery link. PhotoBucket images should remain visible until November 2018.
sb56637
sb56637's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 53 min ago
Joined: 01/08/2010 - 09:29
Posts: 6235
Location: The Light

Yep, sorry I didn’t make that clear. The new button to subscribe to email updates for a given thread is in the bottom-right hand corner of the first post in every thread. I should probably make that clear in this announcement post.

Budget Light Forum ...where Frugal meets with Flashlight!

garrybunk
garrybunk's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 hours 47 min ago
Joined: 10/31/2011 - 09:25
Posts: 6044
Location: Johnstown, PA

Ah, I see it now! 

-Garry

My Bike Lights Thread, Optics (TIR) Comparison Beamshots, Diffusion Techniques


NOTE: Moving my photos from PhotoBucket to Flickr. PM me or post in the thread if you can’t see my images and need me to fix or send a gallery link. PhotoBucket images should remain visible until November 2018.
sb56637
sb56637's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 53 min ago
Joined: 01/08/2010 - 09:29
Posts: 6235
Location: The Light

Updated the original post for clarity

Budget Light Forum ...where Frugal meets with Flashlight!

sb56637
sb56637's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 53 min ago
Joined: 01/08/2010 - 09:29
Posts: 6235
Location: The Light

I just made some updates to the system to fix two serious issues that were reported to me via PM.

Please note that the method for configuring your personal preferences has changed. The option to disable all subscription emails and the option to disable automatic subscriptions are now located in your user account settings, under the “Edit” tab in the “Subscriptions” section. Anybody who previously changed those settings will need to do so again. Sorry for the inconvenience!

Take care, have fun.

Budget Light Forum ...where Frugal meets with Flashlight!

Jinx
Jinx's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 weeks 1 day ago
Joined: 10/16/2011 - 11:35
Posts: 1079
Location: England

Edit: good work SB, as always Smile

how2
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 5 days ago
Joined: 06/01/2010 - 10:26
Posts: 2416
Location: london

It was all O.K I did not get any notification emails for any posts I made or watched. Now I’m getting emails. I want to stop it. I went to setting and unchecked the boxes but I still get emails.

I DO NOT want to get any emails for post and watched posts.
I do want to see which Posts that I made comments on and posted are updates

What do I do?

_the_
_the_'s picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 week 5 hours ago
Joined: 07/08/2011 - 06:22
Posts: 3587
Location: Finland

Did you remember to click "Save" after unchecking the boxes?

=the=

Disclaimer: Above post might contain referral links, but only to items that I myself have bought, tested & approved. Or items that, based on my experience, can be considered as good deals & worth sharing.

how2
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 5 days ago
Joined: 06/01/2010 - 10:26
Posts: 2416
Location: london
the wrote:

Did you remember to click “Save” after unchecking the boxes?

Yes I did. I did it all again today, I’ll wait until tomorrow and check my email

sb56637
sb56637's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 53 min ago
Joined: 01/08/2010 - 09:29
Posts: 6235
Location: The Light
how2 wrote:
I went to setting and unchecked the boxes but I still get emails.

Hey there how2,

The checkboxes are for disabling subscriptions. In other words, they should be checked in your case if you don’t want notification emails. I know it’s sort of counter-intuitive, but since I wanted notifications enabled by default, it was easiest to do it this way.

Hope this helps,
Sb

Budget Light Forum ...where Frugal meets with Flashlight!

how2
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 5 days ago
Joined: 06/01/2010 - 10:26
Posts: 2416
Location: london

 

What's the different between

 

You are not watching this post, click to start watching and Click to Subscribe 

 

in the posts.

garrybunk
garrybunk's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 hours 47 min ago
Joined: 10/31/2011 - 09:25
Posts: 6044
Location: Johnstown, PA
Clicking to "Watch the Post" currently only adds it to your "My Watched Posts" page, but does not send out email notifications for thread updates. The "Click to Subscribe" link sends you email alerts to thread updates (only one email until you return to thread again) but I don't believe we have access to a page of our "Subscribed Threads". SB is planning to eventually get rid of the old "Watched Posts" system.

-Garry

My Bike Lights Thread, Optics (TIR) Comparison Beamshots, Diffusion Techniques


NOTE: Moving my photos from PhotoBucket to Flickr. PM me or post in the thread if you can’t see my images and need me to fix or send a gallery link. PhotoBucket images should remain visible until November 2018.
sb56637
sb56637's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 53 min ago
Joined: 01/08/2010 - 09:29
Posts: 6235
Location: The Light
garrybunk wrote:
Clicking to “Watch the Post” currently only adds it to your “My Watched Posts” page, but does not send out email notifications for thread updates. The “Click to Subscribe” link sends you email alerts to thread updates (only one email until you return to thread again) but I don’t believe we have access to a page of our “Subscribed Threads”. SB is planning to eventually get rid of the old “Watched Posts” system.

-Garry

+1 Wink

Budget Light Forum ...where Frugal meets with Flashlight!

rufus001
Offline
Last seen: 7 months 1 week ago
Joined: 06/13/2012 - 06:49
Posts: 109

This simply wont work for me. Is there a significant delay between the post and the email? If so I may be seeing the new post before the system has a chance to email me. Otherwise refer to my first sentence!

sb56637
sb56637's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 53 min ago
Joined: 01/08/2010 - 09:29
Posts: 6235
Location: The Light
rufus001 wrote:
This simply wont work for me. Is there a significant delay between the post and the email? If so I may be seeing the new post before the system has a chance to email me. Otherwise refer to my first sentence!

Hi there,

Sorry you’re having trouble. The notification gets sent immediately. But it’s very possible that your email service is classifying the notification message as Spam. Please check your Spam folder, and if you find anything from BLF there, mark it as “Not spam”.

Thanks, hope this helps!

Budget Light Forum ...where Frugal meets with Flashlight!

rufus001
Offline
Last seen: 7 months 1 week ago
Joined: 06/13/2012 - 06:49
Posts: 109

It’s weird. I received an email when you posted in this thread as I had subscribed to it. But I’ve yet to receive any emails for the following thread despite also being subscribed to it.

http://budgetlightforum.com/node/12767

I’ve tried unsubscribing then re-subscribing. Swearing at my computer monitor. Everything! It may just be a glitch with that thread.
Oh and I’ve checked Spam.

CM2010
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 34 min ago
Joined: 07/19/2012 - 05:48
Posts: 435
Location: England

Even tho i'm subscribed i'm not getting any email notifications.

sb56637
sb56637's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 53 min ago
Joined: 01/08/2010 - 09:29
Posts: 6235
Location: The Light
CM2010 wrote:

Even tho i’m subscribed i’m not getting any email notifications.

Hmm, did you check the spam folder on your email service?

Budget Light Forum ...where Frugal meets with Flashlight!

CM2010
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 34 min ago
Joined: 07/19/2012 - 05:48
Posts: 435
Location: England

sb56637 wrote:
CM2010 wrote:

Even tho i'm subscribed i'm not getting any email notifications.

Hmm, did you check the spam folder on your email service?

 

Yeah, nothing.

sb56637
sb56637's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 53 min ago
Joined: 01/08/2010 - 09:29
Posts: 6235
Location: The Light
CM2010 wrote:

sb56637 wrote:
CM2010 wrote:

Even tho i’m subscribed i’m not getting any email notifications.

Hmm, did you check the spam folder on your email service?

 

Yeah, nothing.

OK, I’ll look into it. Thanks for reporting!

Budget Light Forum ...where Frugal meets with Flashlight!

sb56637
sb56637's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 53 min ago
Joined: 01/08/2010 - 09:29
Posts: 6235
Location: The Light

Thanks a lot CM2010! Thanks to your report I was able to squash another bug in the system. (Your subscription to this particular thread was an edge case that I’ve never been able to test before on my own.)

Now, everyone who has had problems with not receiving the notification e-mails, please subscribe to some threads and monitor the activity of the threads and the notification e-mails you receive. I think it should work a lot better now.

Budget Light Forum ...where Frugal meets with Flashlight!

sb56637
sb56637's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 53 min ago
Joined: 01/08/2010 - 09:29
Posts: 6235
Location: The Light
  • Identified and fixed an important bug that was preventing some users from receiving notification e-mails in threads with more than 10 subscribers
  • Identified and fixed a bug where multiple comments in a thread would result in multiple notifications being sent out if the first post was featured on the frontpage

Budget Light Forum ...where Frugal meets with Flashlight!

Pages