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Creating Tables for Use in Reviews (and elsewhere)


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The question (paraphrased) came up in our Discord Channel: how do you customize tables (e.g., how they're displayed in the browser; how they display in full size desktop screens vs. Smart Phone screens, etc. (responsive web design); and so forth)?

 

Here's my initial response to that:

 

Some basic knowledge of CSS (Cascading Style Sheet) code added 'inline' might help; the more standardized approach would be to assign IDs/Classes to block elements (e.g., a major section, paragraph, image, table, table row, etc.--containers, if you will), then add CSS for those unique IDs/Classes to the stylesheet in use for a page.  I'll sign into my EHW WordPress account later today to see whether/what option(s) exist(s). If such modifications can be made by our reviewers' at their account levels (e.g. author vs. editor, etc.), I'll work on putting together a cheat sheet with screen snaps that everyone can follow; and post it in this thread.

 

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Just so I have this clear. Is the question that has been bought up related to the Style of the table or how it interacts with different screen types ? 

 

If its style, the pro/con table for example is a "Standard" and will look the same across articles. We need to be wary of certain changes as some would be undesirable.

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34 minutes ago, ENTERPRISE said:

Just so I have this clear. Is the question that has been bought up related to the Style of the table or how it interacts with different screen types ? 

 

If its style, the pro/con table for example is a "Standard" and will look the same across articles. We need to be wary of certain changes as some would be undesirable.

 

Both, actually (style AND viewport-driven media queries).

 

My post was in response to a question one of our reviewers had on the Discord channel about how to narrow the width of a custom "system requirements" table they were working on for a review they are doing. I do understand your need for caution though and am aware of the caveats that can accompany the sharing of such info; which might be addressed by simply stating "don't add CSS or make changes to the existing CSS for the following tables" to a list of tables review authors shouldn't alter.

 

Ultimately though, it is your web site E and you have the last say 😉 (I was just trying to be helpful). 

 

 

 

 

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18 hours ago, iamjanco said:

 

Both, actually (style AND viewport-driven media queries).

 

My post was in response to a question one of our reviewers had on the Discord channel about how to narrow the width of a custom "system requirements" table they were working on for a review they are doing. I do understand your need for caution though and am aware of the caveats that can accompany the sharing of such info; which might be addressed by simply stating "don't add CSS or make changes to the existing CSS for the following tables" to a list of tables review authors shouldn't alter.

 

Ultimately though, it is your web site E and you have the last say 😉 (I was just trying to be helpful). 

 

 

 

 

Oh for sure bud. Im not complaining at all for the help :). Im happy for us to design a better "Standard" that both looks better and performs better regarding different screens. 

 

Happy to see some concepts ? 

 

Who here would like to have their say suggestion wise ? Happy to hear thoughts 🙂

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18 hours ago, ENTERPRISE said:

Oh for sure bud. Im not complaining at all for the help :). Im happy for us to design a better "Standard" that both looks better and performs better regarding different screens. 

 

Happy to see some concepts ? 

 

Who here would like to have their say suggestion wise ? Happy to hear thoughts 🙂

 

Thanks, E 😀 I can actually make tables used in a web page look just about any way a user wants... 

 

That said, I did have a look at what's doable (or not doable) the way things are set up in WordPress now.

 

First the facts: the current WordPress user role restrictions in place for me (example in spoiler)

 

Spoiler

 

ehw-tables-ccs2.thumb.jpg.46d98ff5163cfbd57ea62dde03aacd4c.jpg

 

 

prevent me and anyone assigned the same WordPress role as me from making anything more than rudimentary changes. That's understandable, of course, since we don't want folks breaking things accidentally, especially if they're not overly adept at using WordPress/html/css; I'm also assuming all review authors are assigned the same role; but I'm not entirely sure of what WordPress role/level of access that is. I'll assume Author for the time being, until you tell me otherwise.  

 

Anyway, in the theme in use on EHW, css classes and/or ids can indeed be added to the main table element (the table container, if you will); but the actual css code associated with those classes and ids may have to be added/altered by someone with administrative rights (e.g.; someone who could make changes to the theme's stylesheet(s); best done these days using either a) any stylesheet tools/functionality that accompany a specific WordPress theme at the post and/or page level; or, if not available; b) by making such alterations using the theme editor itself that's built into WordPress. 

 

Note: I stated 'may  have to be' in the previous paragraph because I'm guessing the Total theme that's in use on the site might allow style management at the post/page level if certain theme options are turned on for post/page authors, but you may have disabled them for the same reasons mentioned earlier (to avoid accidental errors on our reviewers' parts that might break other things, etc.).

 

Spoiler

/*!
 Theme Name: Total
 Version: 5.0.35
 Description: Premium Multi-purpose WordPress Theme
 Author: WPExplorer
 Theme URI: https://themeforest.net/item/total-responsive-multipurpose-wordpress-theme/6339019
 Author URI: https://themeforest.net/user/wpexplorer
 License: Custom license
 License URI: http://themeforest.net/licenses/terms/regular
 Text Domain: total
 Tags: custom-colors, accessibility-ready, custom-header, custom-menu, custom-logo, editor-style, featured-images, footer-widgets, post-formats, rtl-language-support, theme-options, threaded-comments, translation-ready

 

So, as it stands, that really leaves us with only one other option: making such changes at the post/page level using the post editor's html/text view; but I'm fairly certain that would introduce a whole new set of risks if we delved into that. We can discuss more about that later if necessary.

 

I'm going to stop here for the time being to give you time to digest what I've just mentioned as well as time to decide if you would like me to take this further or not. Me, I'm willing to help. 

 

Edited by iamjanco
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On 15/11/2022 at 15:28, ENTERPRISE said:

Just so I have this clear. Is the question that has been bought up related to the Style of the table or how it interacts with different screen types ? 

 

If its style, the pro/con table for example is a "Standard" and will look the same across articles. We need to be wary of certain changes as some would be undesirable.

It was me who was asking. I was really looking for how to make a smaller width table as sometimes I just need a small table. When there's only like 2-3 columns, the last one always stretches to the edge of the page. The Pros/Cons table is a great example of this.

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1 hour ago, Sir Beregond said:

I was really looking for how to make a smaller width table as sometimes I just need a small table. When there's only like 2-3 columns, the last one always stretches to the edge of the page. The Pros/Cons table is a great example of this.

 

Maybe we could meet on Discord where I can share my screen and can explain what follows to you in depth? For the time being I'll park a few images that highlight what's going on in the following spoiler:

 

Spoiler

Full Width Desktop Viewport (with css code modification that constrains the Pros/Cons table to 50% of its parent container's width AND centers the table horizontally in the same parent container):

 

ehw-tables-ccs5.thumb.jpg.1278dd8d23766752a88898d111223238.jpg

 

iPhone 12 Desktop Viewport (with that same css code modification):

 

ehw-tables-ccs6.thumb.jpg.bd2a1e5c1353e3aeab7f2a340b55c8c1.jpg

 

iPhone 12 Desktop Viewport (with that same css code disabled):

 

ehw-tables-ccs7.thumb.jpg.3fc78d7b7dddca9e91539ec1b0e24e1e.jpg

 

 

 

Edited by iamjanco
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21 minutes ago, iamjanco said:

 

Maybe we could meet on Discord where I can share my screen and can explain what follows to you in depth? For the time being I'll park a few images that highlight what's going on in the following spoiler:

 

  Hide contents

Full Width Desktop Viewport (with css code modification that constrains the Pros/Cons table to 50% of its parent container's width AND centers the table horizontally in the same parent container):

 

ehw-tables-ccs5.thumb.jpg.1278dd8d23766752a88898d111223238.jpg

 

iPhone 12 Desktop Viewport (with that same css code modification):

 

ehw-tables-ccs6.thumb.jpg.bd2a1e5c1353e3aeab7f2a340b55c8c1.jpg

 

iPhone 12 Desktop Viewport (with that same css code disabled):

 

ehw-tables-ccs7.thumb.jpg.3fc78d7b7dddca9e91539ec1b0e24e1e.jpg

 

 

 

Oh this looks like what I am looking for. I'll be able to take a read more in-depth on your original post after work today.

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On 17/11/2022 at 12:40, iamjanco said:

 

Thanks, E 😀 I can actually make tables used in a web page look just about any way a user wants... 

 

That said, I did have a look at what's doable (or not doable) the way things are set up in WordPress now.

 

First the facts: the current WordPress user role restrictions in place for me (example in spoiler)

 

  Reveal hidden contents

 

ehw-tables-ccs2.thumb.jpg.46d98ff5163cfbd57ea62dde03aacd4c.jpg

 

 

prevent me and anyone assigned the same WordPress role as me from making anything more than rudimentary changes. That's understandable, of course, since we don't want folks breaking things accidentally, especially if they're not overly adept at using WordPress/html/css; I'm also assuming all review authors are assigned the same role; but I'm not entirely sure of what WordPress role/level of access that is. I'll assume Author for the time being, until you tell me otherwise.  

 

Anyway, in the theme in use on EHW, css classes and/or ids can indeed be added to the main table element (the table container, if you will); but the actual css code associated with those classes and ids may have to be added/altered by someone with administrative rights (e.g.; someone who could make changes to the theme's stylesheet(s); best done these days using either a) any stylesheet tools/functionality that accompany a specific WordPress theme at the post and/or page level; or, if not available; b) by making such alterations using the theme editor itself that's built into WordPress. 

 

Note: I stated 'may  have to be' in the previous paragraph because I'm guessing the Total theme that's in use on the site might allow style management at the post/page level if certain theme options are turned on for post/page authors, but you may have disabled them for the same reasons mentioned earlier (to avoid accidental errors on our reviewers' parts that might break other things, etc.).

 

  Reveal hidden contents

/*!
 Theme Name: Total
 Version: 5.0.35
 Description: Premium Multi-purpose WordPress Theme
 Author: WPExplorer
 Theme URI: https://themeforest.net/item/total-responsive-multipurpose-wordpress-theme/6339019
 Author URI: https://themeforest.net/user/wpexplorer
 License: Custom license
 License URI: http://themeforest.net/licenses/terms/regular
 Text Domain: total
 Tags: custom-colors, accessibility-ready, custom-header, custom-menu, custom-logo, editor-style, featured-images, footer-widgets, post-formats, rtl-language-support, theme-options, threaded-comments, translation-ready

 

So, as it stands, that really leaves us with only one other option: making such changes at the post/page level using the post editor's html/text view; but I'm fairly certain that would introduce a whole new set of risks if we delved into that. We can discuss more about that later if necessary.

 

I'm going to stop here for the time being to give you time to digest what I've just mentioned as well as time to decide if you would like me to take this further or not. Me, I'm willing to help. 

 

Everyone is assigned the Author role as standard. The only site Admins are myself and any elected developer. 

 

I think for the sake of continuity and platform security, any changes/additions made to the site would have to be done at a theme/admin level, allowing users with lower permission roles such as Authors to have access to the new tables. Im not a fan of having it as a free for all as it invites trouble.

 

I can look at giving you an administrative access so you can see what is possible so far as improving the tables?  I would imagine that would be the sensible first step 🙂

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14 hours ago, ENTERPRISE said:

Everyone is assigned the Author role as standard. The only site Admins are myself and any elected developer. 

 

I think for the sake of continuity and platform security, any changes/additions made to the site would have to be done at a theme/admin level, allowing users with lower permission roles such as Authors to have access to the new tables. Im not a fan of having it as a free for all as it invites trouble.

 

I can look at giving you an administrative access so you can see what is possible so far as improving the tables?  I would imagine that would be the sensible first step 🙂

 

Thanks E. If you're okay with it, so am I 🙂.  Also, it might not be a bad idea to toss it by the other regulars since a number of them are fairly well vested in the site's success 🤔 

 

I'd propose ideas/changes through you for approval first of course; and I'd develop and flush them out in test posts if you're okay with that, before going live with anything. Feel free to modify what I just suggested and we'll  come up with a plan.

 

Once this process is established, users could then make (e.g.) 'styling' requests to me for reviews and other pieces they authored; Such requests would have adhere to any digital style guide for the site that's established/maintained of course.

 

Thoughts?

 

Added edit: my apologies if it's the case, but I think I misread your intent earlier. If you meant temporarily giving me administrator access just to determine what's possible as far as tables go, I'm okay with that as well. 

Edited by iamjanco
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11 hours ago, iamjanco said:

Once this process is established, users could then make (e.g.) 'styling' requests to me for reviews and other pieces they authored; Such requests would have adhere to any digital style guide for the site that's established/maintained of course.

Really cool ideas Jan. I think it would be nice to be able to send a review for "styling". 

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17 hours ago, iamjanco said:

 

Thanks E. If you're okay with it, so am I 🙂.  Also, it might not be a bad idea to toss it by the other regulars since a number of them are fairly well vested in the site's success 🤔 

 

I'd propose ideas/changes through you for approval first of course; and I'd develop and flush them out in test posts if you're okay with that, before going live with anything. Feel free to modify what I just suggested and we'll  come up with a plan.

 

Once this process is established, users could then make (e.g.) 'styling' requests to me for reviews and other pieces they authored; Such requests would have adhere to any digital style guide for the site that's established/maintained of course.

 

Thoughts?

 

Added edit: my apologies if it's the case, but I think I misread your intent earlier. If you meant temporarily giving me administrator access just to determine what's possible as far as tables go, I'm okay with that as well. 

 

Firstly, check out if it can be done 🙂

 

Secondly, I think coming up with some styles first and create some visual concepts to look at. If I am happy with the concepts then perhaps we can put out some of the styles for a vote here on the forums and choose the preferred style/s. 

 

If our reviewers would like to pitch in some ideas and thoughts that would be beneficial. @Avacado could you round people up ? 

 

Thanks,

E

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Really nice thread, @iamjanco and a conversation worth having. I really like the idea of enhancing the styling, and improving the size and format of tables is a good place to start. Also a challenging one because visual variance between browsers is always a wildcard. I have tried to address the unpredictability in the past by making tables offline, saving them as an image and posting the image. Then the visual outcome is nearly guaranteed whether the review is read on a PC, Mac, smartphone, tablet or whatever.

 

There was another matter I had mentioned to Brother @Avacado a while ago that I was going to suggest to @ENTERPRISE and never got around to it. Now could be a good time to raise the idea and incorporate it into a "reboot" of sorts.

 

This appears at the end of each review: 
Want to discuss this product or give your views and feedback from your own usage ? Discuss now on the ExtremeHW Forums

 

The link dumps you onto the landing page of the forum. There is no associated thread. The comments at the end of a review require a separate disconnected user authentication and there are seldom any public comments. It is usually us telling a peer they did a nice job on the review.

 

Most visitors are not going to create an account and start their own thread, but they might be more inclined to engage with the community if the thread already existed. It would be better if a thread was created for each review where the public could engage with questions and feedback about the review and the product itself. I think it could drive more traffic to our community and improve engagement related to the reviews. It would also be more consistent with what we see from competing reviewers. Most of our competitors/peers that do product reviews have an associated forum thread linked at the end of the review. It could be moderated like any other forum thread, so it would not require a special process or workflow to manage it.

 

This could also enhance the value of our reviews to the OEMs that send us products for review. Sometimes public opinion on products, or the experience of other users, does not mesh 100% with a review. Technical issues or special benefits can surface that were not identified by the person doing a review. That could be hugely helpful to the OEMs.

 

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47 minutes ago, Mr. Fox said:

............

There was another matter I had mentioned to Brother @Avacado a while ago that I was going to suggest to @ENTERPRISE and never got around to it. Now could be a good time to raise the idea and incorporate it into a "reboot" of sorts.

 

This appears at the end of each review: 
Want to discuss this product or give your views and feedback from your own usage ? Discuss now on the ExtremeHW Forums

 

The link dumps you onto the landing page of the forum. There is no associated thread. The comments at the end of a review require a separate disconnected user authentication and there are seldom any public comments. It is usually us telling a peer they did a nice job on the review.

 

Most visitors are not going to create an account and start their own thread, but they might if the thread already existed. It would be better if a thread was created for each review where the public could engage with questions and feedback about the review and the product itself. I think it could drive more traffic to our community and improve engagement related to the reviews. It would also be more consistent with what we see from competing reviews. Most of our competitors/peers that do product reviews have an associated forum thread linked at the end of the review. It could be moderated like any other forum thread, so it would not require a special process or workflow to manage it. 

Now THIS suggestion I think should be more priority over new tables IMHO.  You're right, a thread SHOULD be created that people can have conversations about the reviews.  As is right now, the comments section is broken kinda (as mentioned above), and allowing "guests" to comment (even in a thread) would certainly help drive up more conversation outside of the community.  I definitely support this idea.

----------------------------------

As far as the tables go, I'm not HTML person, and I absolutely suck in Wordpress, not going to lie about that.  I accidentally published my thread trying to hit the preview button once by accident. -_-  (Sorry E :lachen:).  If we're going to be implementing new table options, could it possibly be implemented in such a way that its an easy copy / paste kinda thing like the existing table is that we use for pros / cons?  Obviously not just one table, but yeah.....give us some options on tables we can copy / paste, and be able to experiment in our own reviews.  It'd allow a LITTLE bit more artistic freedom.  By all means, don't fix what's not broken....but adding NEW options for tables that we can implement for other purposes would absolutely be fantastic.

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5 hours ago, Mr. Fox said:

This appears at the end of each review: 
Want to discuss this product or give your views and feedback from your own usage ? Discuss now on the ExtremeHW Forums

This above current verbiage could modified to contain a link to the associated thread and be changed to read something like:

 

A thread related to this product review can be found at this link in the ExtremeHW Forum. We cordially invite you to participate in the discussion, provide feedback on the review, share your views or personal experience with this product.

 

Likewise, the opening post wouldn't need anything more than a hyperlinked text bearing the title of the review above boilerplate language that says something like:

 

Cooler Master HAF 700 Review and Build by pioneerisloud

After enjoying the above review, we invite you to participate in this discussion, provide feedback on the review, share your views or personal experience with this product.

 

Alternatively, although probably unnecessary, the opening post could include the opening paragraph from the review, like this:

 

Cooler Master HAF 700 Review and Build by pioneerisloud

Today we have been given the opportunity to review an entire “half” a computer package, if you will, courtesy of Cooler Master.  This review will incorporate the newly released HAF 700 “Berserker” PC chassis, the XG850 Plus Platinum power supply, and their MasterLiquid PL360 Flux AIO water cooling kit.  Cooler Master was founded in 1992, so they’re definitely not new to the table when it comes to PC components.  They produce computer cases, power supplies, PC cooling for both CPU’s and GPU’s, laptop cooling pads, and computer peripherals.  They’ve also produced cooling solutions for other major brands in the industry, and they’re a major sponsor of eSports competitions.  Do these components we have today stand up to the ExtremeHardware standards?  Well, let’s dive in and see!

 

Edited by Mr. Fox
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@Mr. Fox@pioneerisloudthank you both for your input! But (there' always a 'but,' eh?)

 

While the issue with the statement that's currently in use at the end of our reviews is a valid concern, the quick (simple) fix for the time being might be to simply make the requested changes to that statement once everyone's in agreement as to how it should be worded; then manually start that new thread in the forum (in the right place) as one of the last actions required by reviewers when the post goes live. But you really don't need my help to do that... (even though I could create a new page template geared strictly toward reviews IF I had the level of access to the site files needed to do so; which I current don't—I'll explain in a bit). 

 

I'm also not necessarily crazy about opening such a thread up to guests who are not subscribed to the forum. Mostly because someone would have to moderate and approve or disapprove such posts because of the inherent risks involved with allowing anonymous posts. E ( @ENTERPRISE ) might chime in about that as well. 

 

Anyway, the intent of my original post was to toss around the idea of addressing the questions associated with tables; given that, I'm also okay with the fact the thread has morphed into something akin to a site suggestions thread, because of the attention it might now get by our proactive members 🙂

 

As for why I'm limited in what I can and can't do, that boils down to:

 

a) I don't have ftp access to the site root files to examine how they're coded (especially the theme files); and given how much they've been changed by what are likely various developers along the way to get where we are today, I'm not even sure I'd want that access (E likely went through a lot of trouble getting the customizations in place done by those developers while the site was being put together, over a longer period of time), and;
 

b) I don't have access to the theme files via the theme file editor in the WordPress dashboard >> Appearance  and I suspect that file editor has been disabled in the site root's wp-config.php file to ensure things aren't inadvertently broken by folks who mean well otherwise.

 

So my hands are bit tied at this time as to what I really can do, unfortunately or not. And I'll pause for a breather now because I have to get ready to bloodwork done (there's also that); and give everyone (including E) a chance to digest what's in this post and add comments of your own.

 

 

Edited by iamjanco
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9 hours ago, Mr. Fox said:

Really nice thread, @iamjanco and a conversation worth having. I really like the idea of enhancing the styling, and improving the size and format of tables is a good place to start. Also a challenging one because visual variance between browsers is always a wildcard. I have tried to address the unpredictability in the past by making tables offline, saving them as an image and posting the image. Then the visual outcome is nearly guaranteed whether the review is read on a PC, Mac, smartphone, tablet or whatever.

 

There was another matter I had mentioned to Brother @Avacado a while ago that I was going to suggest to @ENTERPRISE and never got around to it. Now could be a good time to raise the idea and incorporate it into a "reboot" of sorts.

 

This appears at the end of each review: 
Want to discuss this product or give your views and feedback from your own usage ? Discuss now on the ExtremeHW Forums

 

The link dumps you onto the landing page of the forum. There is no associated thread. The comments at the end of a review require a separate disconnected user authentication and there are seldom any public comments. It is usually us telling a peer they did a nice job on the review.

 

Most visitors are not going to create an account and start their own thread, but they might be more inclined to engage with the community if the thread already existed. It would be better if a thread was created for each review where the public could engage with questions and feedback about the review and the product itself. I think it could drive more traffic to our community and improve engagement related to the reviews. It would also be more consistent with what we see from competing reviewers. Most of our competitors/peers that do product reviews have an associated forum thread linked at the end of the review. It could be moderated like any other forum thread, so it would not require a special process or workflow to manage it.

 

This could also enhance the value of our reviews to the OEMs that send us products for review. Sometimes public opinion on products, or the experience of other users, does not mesh 100% with a review. Technical issues or special benefits can surface that were not identified by the person doing a review. That could be hugely helpful to the OEMs.

 

Oh...this is a really good suggestion, I like it.

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5 hours ago, iamjanco said:

I'm also not necessarily crazy about opening such a thread up to guests who are not subscribed to the forum.

Just to be clear, I would not be an advocate for anonymous posting. Creating the thread and driving readers of the review to engage in discussion would require that they create an account (also a very positive thing) before they could post anything. That may not have been clear in the suggestion.

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7 hours ago, Mr. Fox said:

This above current verbiage could modified to contain a link to the associated thread and be changed to read something like:

 

A thread related to this product review can be found at this link in the ExtremeHW Forum. We cordially invite you to participate in the discussion, provide feedback on the review, share your views or personal experience with this product.

 

Likewise, the opening post wouldn't need anything more than a hyperlinked text bearing the title of the review above boilerplate language that says something like:

 

Cooler Master HAF 700 Review and Build by pioneerisloud

After enjoying the above review, we invite you to participate in this discussion, provide feedback on the review, share your views or personal experience with this product.

 

Alternatively, although probably unnecessary, the opening post could include the opening paragraph from the review, like this:

 

Cooler Master HAF 700 Review and Build by pioneerisloud

Today we have been given the opportunity to review an entire “half” a computer package, if you will, courtesy of Cooler Master.  This review will incorporate the newly released HAF 700 “Berserker” PC chassis, the XG850 Plus Platinum power supply, and their MasterLiquid PL360 Flux AIO water cooling kit.  Cooler Master was founded in 1992, so they’re definitely not new to the table when it comes to PC components.  They produce computer cases, power supplies, PC cooling for both CPU’s and GPU’s, laptop cooling pads, and computer peripherals.  They’ve also produced cooling solutions for other major brands in the industry, and they’re a major sponsor of eSports competitions.  Do these components we have today stand up to the ExtremeHardware standards?  Well, let’s dive in and see!

 

 

It is an idea that was toyed with a while ago. It is a great suggestion and looking at it, there is no reason why a thread cannot be manually created that the review links to in order to foster the further conversation about the review.  

 

There are some things to think about however. 

 

1. If we go the the forums route for anything review conversation related, would we want to disable comments on Wordpress altogether, to make sure we funnel all traffic to the forums ?

2. There is the question whether or not a review thread should be open to public of sign ups only. There are some advantages and disadvantages to both. 

 

A. You allow guests to post 

 

Advantage - You increase the likelihood of discussion and the possibility to convert a guest to a member 

Disadvantage - You open the doors to spam. 

 

B. You do not allow guests to post 

 

Advantage - Unlikely to get spam 

Disadvantage - Possibly deter viewers from commenting, as they do not want to sign up just to post one comment and there is no chance to turn a lurker into a member.

 

Personally, I am up for guest posting if it can be managed correctly as I think it is a great way to interact with the wider public and to convert lurkers into members after they see what is on offer at EHW. Happy to hear comments.

 

5 hours ago, iamjanco said:

@Mr. Fox@pioneerisloudthank you both for your input! But (there' always a 'but,' eh?)

 

While the issue with the statement that's currently in use at the end of our reviews is a valid concern, the quick (simple) fix for the time being might be to simply make the requested changes to that statement once everyone's in agreement as to how it should be worded; then manually start that new thread in the forum (in the right place) as one of the last actions required by reviewers when the post goes live. But you really don't need my help to do that... (even though I could create a new page template geared strictly toward reviews IF I had the level of access to the site files needed to do so; which I current don't—I'll explain in a bit). 

 

I'm also not necessarily crazy about opening such a thread up to guests who are not subscribed to the forum. Mostly because someone would have to moderate and approve or disapprove such posts because of the inherent risks involved with allowing anonymous posts. E ( @ENTERPRISE ) might chime in about that as well. 

 

Anyway, the intent of my original post was to toss around the idea of addressing the questions associated with tables; given that, I'm also okay with the fact the thread has morphed into something akin to a site suggestions thread, because of the attention it might now get by our proactive members 🙂

 

As for why I'm limited in what I can and can't do, that boils down to:

 

a) I don't have ftp access to the site root files to examine how they're coded (especially the theme files); and given how much they've been changed by what are likely various developers along the way to get where we are today, I'm not even sure I'd want that access (E likely went through a lot of trouble getting the customizations in place done by those developers while the site was being put together, over a longer period of time), and;
 

b) I don't have access to the theme files via the theme file editor in the WordPress dashboard >> Appearance  and I suspect that file editor has been disabled in the site root's wp-config.php file to ensure things aren't inadvertently broken by folks who mean well otherwise.

 

So my hands are bit tied at this time as to what I really can do, unfortunately or not. And I'll pause for a breather now because I have to get ready to bloodwork done (there's also that); and give everyone (including E) a chance to digest what's in this post and add comments of your own.

 

 

 

@iamjancoare you saying your hands are tied with respects to looking into the Table styles ? I can get you the access you need for delving into what you need to find out etc if that is what is holding you back. 

 

Thanks,

E

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49 minutes ago, ENTERPRISE said:

1. If we go the the forums route for anything review conversation related, would we want to disable comments on Wordpress altogether, to make sure we funnel all traffic to the forums ?

I think there is some merit to kicking around the idea of allowing guest to post, but I think the answer to the above is yes. I would recommend removal of the option to comment apart from the designated thread to avoid fragmented discussion, even if unregistered guests are allowed to post in it. Does the forum software allow that? I would think anyone that had something important enough to share would become a registered member of the community. On the flip side, if it is not important enough to them to register, do we actually care about what they want to share? It's only my personal opinion, but I am leaning toward a no on that. If what they have to say isn't important enough, why give them a platform?

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1 minute ago, Mr. Fox said:

I think there is some merit to kicking around the idea of allowing guest to post, but I think the answer to the above is yes. I would recommend removal of the option to comment apart from the designated thread to avoid fragmented discussion, even if unregistered guests are allowed to post in it. Does the forum software allow that? I would think anyone that had something important enough to share would become a registered member of the community. On the flip side, if it is not important enough to them to register, do we actually care about what they want to share? It's only my personal opinion, but I am leaning toward a no on that. If what they have to say isn't important enough, why give them a platform?

 

I will have to look into it. Ultimately I would only allow guests the ability to post in threads within a specific section of the forums. They would not be able to create threads in that section, only comment in existing ones. 

 

Goes without saying that a guest would not have access to any other part of the site and would need to sign up to do so 🙂

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28 minutes ago, ENTERPRISE said:

are you saying your hands are tied with respects to looking into the Table styles ? I can get you the access you need for delving into what you need to find out etc if that is what is holding you back. 

breaking out what follows into multiple segments to make it easier to understand:

  1. No, the current restrictions in place don't necessarily impact what I can do and can't do as far as the styling of tables go 🙂 ;
     
  2. Though I'd need to take another look to see what can be done on a parent-container/sub-container basis (e.g., ||table|header row|normal row|column|cell||, etc. );
     
  3. That said, I can accomplish what needs to be done table-wise to a large extent using the approach I mentioned earlier (by adding ids/classes via Tablepress and custom css for those ids/classes via the custom css panel in the theme options);
     
  4. But knowing what's up with the entire WordPress instance might would be beneficial, at least to me 😉. As it stands now, it looks like a kluge to me when I view WordPress >> Dashboard >> Appearance >> Themes. 

Anyway, by 'hands tied,' I was referring more to being able to do things like adding somewhat fancier custom page and/or post templates that help automate things like creating new threads where others could post their comments about specific reviews. That includes keeping in mind that what really powers the forum itself is Invision, not WordPress.

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10 hours ago, ENTERPRISE said:

 

I will have to look into it. Ultimately I would only allow guests the ability to post in threads within a specific section of the forums. They would not be able to create threads in that section, only comment in existing ones. 

 

Goes without saying that a guest would not have access to any other part of the site and would need to sign up to do so 🙂

So long as we have a moderator at hand to make sure no spam comes through, I'm totally okay with allowing guests to post in review threads ONLY.  I'm also okay with the review threads being "created" (manually or automatically) by the reviewer themselves.  PERSONALLY, just giving the reviewers themselves the option (in their own review "thread") to delete posts as spam might also help ease the moderation load some too.......so long as we were all in agreeance that's the only thing it'd be used for. 

 

IDK, whatever is decided, I'm cool with.  I just think allowing "guests" to comment on reviews would be potentially useful in driving them more into the site for sign up purposes, and potentially more engagement in total on the site.  If they see that the reviewers themselves are actually engaging WITH them, they might be more inclined to sign up.  Kind of like Youtubers, personally when I make a comment on a Youtube video, it absolutely incentivizes me to "subscribe" to that Youtuber if they actually respond, like, or whatever my comment.  Engagement with the content creator, even at a "guest" level is going to be appreciated by other people not on the site I'd imagine.  Just my 2 cents.

Sounds like Jan's got the tables thing sorted.  Again, wayyyy too far above my knowledge levels, but having a wider variety of tables WOULD be a nice thing to have available for us.

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15 hours ago, pioneerisloud said:

So long as we have a moderator at hand to make sure no spam comes through, I'm totally okay with allowing guests to post in review threads ONLY.  I'm also okay with the review threads being "created" (manually or automatically) by the reviewer themselves.  PERSONALLY, just giving the reviewers themselves the option (in their own review "thread") to delete posts as spam might also help ease the moderation load some too.......so long as we were all in agreeance that's the only thing it'd be used for. 

 

IDK, whatever is decided, I'm cool with.  I just think allowing "guests" to comment on reviews would be potentially useful in driving them more into the site for sign up purposes, and potentially more engagement in total on the site.  If they see that the reviewers themselves are actually engaging WITH them, they might be more inclined to sign up.  Kind of like Youtubers, personally when I make a comment on a Youtube video, it absolutely incentivizes me to "subscribe" to that Youtuber if they actually respond, like, or whatever my comment.  Engagement with the content creator, even at a "guest" level is going to be appreciated by other people not on the site I'd imagine.  Just my 2 cents.

Sounds like Jan's got the tables thing sorted.  Again, wayyyy too far above my knowledge levels, but having a wider variety of tables WOULD be a nice thing to have available for us.

It would be my aim that Reviewers would moderate their own threads :).

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