turn off avatars

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turn off avatars

Postby Guest » Tue Nov 04, 2003 9:38 pm

Could our profiles be given the power to hide avatars? It would make short messages take up less scroll time, make browsing at work a little more comfortable, and might make for a faster response time.
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Postby Kinetic II » Tue Nov 04, 2003 9:50 pm

At 16 KB and 80x80 pixel size, I don't see the avatars as much of a problem. If I'm at work and using my work system I keep the eplaya in a small window and just scroll so I can quickly push questionable content out of view. I even post to the Fuck! thread from work so it works well.

I respect your view but I hope they keep the avatars. And I know about bandwidth concerns... I use many connections that can suck on bandwidth, an Inmarsat phone, a Pocket PC hooked up to a Verizon Wireless phone via serial cable, and a Pocket PC with a Sprint PCS aircard. Even with those crappy connections I still feel the avatars are no problem.

If anything dump the Emoticons...that would help imho.
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Postby Guest » Tue Nov 04, 2003 10:01 pm

Kinetic II wrote:At 16 KB and 80x80 pixel size, I don't see the avatars as much of a problem. If I'm at work and using my work system I keep the eplaya in a small window and just scroll so I can quickly push questionable content out of view. I even post to the Fuck! thread from work so it works well.

I respect your view but I hope they keep the avatars. And I know about bandwidth concerns... I use many connections that can suck on bandwidth, an Inmarsat phone, a Pocket PC hooked up to a Verizon Wireless phone via serial cable, and a Pocket PC with a Sprint PCS aircard. Even with those crappy connections I still feel the avatars are no problem.

If anything dump the Emoticons...that would help imho.


Shoot, I think i failed to get my idea across. I wouldn't dump the avatars completely or suggest that. But if you could adjust a setting in your own profile, whether it be a skin or whatever, that would allow you to surf the site without seeing any avatars, when you wanted to that would be cool.

Thanks for the feedback KII.
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Postby DE FACTO » Tue Nov 04, 2003 10:06 pm

what are you folks using to be so concerned about scroll times and this and that.

a Mac clasic II or 386 with a 1200 baud modem ?
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Postby Kinetic II » Tue Nov 04, 2003 10:11 pm

Wow, that was an overshot. Didn't even see it going over my head...I lost it. Having a skin or or temp way to disable them would be nice. I thought you were wanting them banned outright and I'm like NO!!!

De Facto, a PCS aircard makes a 1200 baud modem feel like it has the speed of DSL. They royally suck.
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Postby DE FACTO » Tue Nov 04, 2003 10:18 pm

Kinetic II wrote:De Facto, a PCS aircard makes a 1200 baud modem feel like it has the speed of DSL. They royally suck.


what aircard are you using? did you look into using 1xrtt network (cdma) with
and AirCard 555 from Sierra Wireless?

and/or the other suggestion my friend came up with gprs (gsm), with t-mobile, and an aircard 750?

I don't know, tell me about these things. I just can't imagine this site being that slow even at 14.4.
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Postby III » Wed Nov 05, 2003 6:43 am

fpr some of us, it's less a download speed thing than a visual speed thing

there is a lot of visual cruft that could be eliminated, avatars among them. unfortunately, it seems that it'd be easier to get rid of avatars than those blinkin smilies. i'm still looking at the style teplates, and still getting headaches. erf.
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Postby Bob » Wed Nov 05, 2003 10:31 am

I'd modify abeerinthemorning's request to include a stripped-down style with user-defined fonts, no graphics, etc.

I'm on dialup and, despite what spanky's posted previously about blazing speed on a 56K connection (yeah, right), pages often take over a minute to generate on my connection.
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Postby DE FACTO » Wed Nov 05, 2003 10:52 am

still the question has not been answered. I am really curious.

on my systems (systems) everything works fine. but mabey mine are a little more than average.

ok. Bob is on dial up. hey , if you guys dont want to explain then ok forget it.

I still don't get it.
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Postby Kinetic II » Wed Nov 05, 2003 11:39 am

DeFacto, I connect using an HP iPAQ 5555 with a dual PC Card expansion sleeve. In that sleeve I'm usually stuck with a Sprint PCS CF 2031. This card is good for 33.6 on a good day rolling down Donner Pass with an 50 kt tailwind..ok it doesn't apply but you get my point.

If it's not that I get to use an Inmarsat M4, just like this one:
http://www.outfittersatellite.com/inmarsat_equip.htm and no I can't lash two of them together for more bandwidth. And it has it's moments that make you want to punt the annoying thing.

Beyond that I just got a Verizon Wireless phone and am using their wireless connection kit to link with the PDA...so far the speed on that is better but I stay on the fringe of the coverage area so I have issues there.

Fortunately when I'm at home I have Roadrunner and their very fast cable modems, and at work, well this is Sprint, we have it ALL, when it works.

So when I travel, bandwidth quickly becomes an issue as it does for many people...does this answer your questions or did I tap dance around the problem again?
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Postby DE FACTO » Wed Nov 05, 2003 11:54 am

Thanks K. that did. however Pda is another seperate issue. Would you be willing to try the algorythim software i was telling you about from my friend? I/we want to get all the info we can before BM2004.
I feel confident enough that all will work fine but we need to do extensive testing.

as for Bob and Trey I'm really still curious.

If it's a matter of modems or something like that I have plenty of extra stuff.
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Postby III » Wed Nov 05, 2003 12:12 pm

i'm on a g4 connected to a 1.5mbit dsl via 802.11g.

as mentioned earlier, we obviously have different criteria for what's considered "acceptable". i don't think my connection is really the problem.
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Postby DE FACTO » Wed Nov 05, 2003 12:18 pm

III wrote:i'm on a g4 connected to a 1.5mbit dsl via 802.11g.

as mentioned earlier, we obviously have different criteria for what's considered "acceptable". i don't think my connection is really the problem.


nice setup.

I can't imagine any kind of problem with that. Please understand, I have that too and a Sun ultra 5, an SGI Indigo, 2 pentium 4's and a P III laptop.

I use all forms of modems and I test constantly my stuff and my friends stuff (software and hardware).

mabey if you can be more specific of your criteria then I can get a better understanding of your standards.
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Postby DE FACTO » Wed Nov 05, 2003 12:31 pm

just thought of something, are you sure no one is tapping in on your 802.11g?

also just noticed your using 802.11g.
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Postby III » Wed Nov 05, 2003 1:00 pm

yes, and yes.

it's not a connection problem - i can get sites to load as fast as the data comes out.

i just find the 2-4 second delay (as i'm currently measuring it) slightly annoying. i'm sure that it qualifies as satisfactory by most current design standards (and compared to a lot of the high bandwidth/low information sites out there, it is). that delay becomes even more annoying when it takes three clicks to navigate to the actual subject matter that you want to read.
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Postby precipitate » Wed Nov 05, 2003 1:01 pm

> I still don't get it.

The argument that has been stated again and again is that some people
prefer to have less stuff on the screen -- no avatars, no boxes, no links
to PM/ICQ/etc.

For trey, and for me, it's not so much the time it takes to download each
page, but the time it takes to read it because your eye is distracted by
all the other stuff on the screen. It'd be nice if you could, in your personal
profile, elect not to see those things.

Download speed is affected by these things as well, and is a concern for
some users; Bob has been vocal about it. Are you going to offer
equipment to every eplaya user who has a slow connection and is
therefore turned off by having to wait several seconds for each page to
load? While that's a generous offer, it's not a realistic solution to the
problem of download speed. Some people are just going to have slower
equipment, and while I do not subscribe to the lowest common
denominator theory of web development, I'm not sure having a
graphics-lite skin as an option comes anywhere near that.

And just for benchmarking, this page is about 100Kb with images (with
only a couple of users having avatars). It'd be quite possible to have a
page that was over 200Kb if you had a lot of users with max-sized
avatars. That's not really the point here, I just thought I'd point out that
it is quite possible to generate very large pages with the default skin.

Oh, and I'm fully aware that the tech team is working on a skin that
doesn't include as many graphics. This isn't intended to address them,
but to explain to De Facto why it's been requested, and why I personally
support being able to eliminate avatars from the screen as a user
preference.
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Postby DE FACTO » Wed Nov 05, 2003 1:02 pm

III wrote:i just find the 2-4 second delay (as i'm currently measuring it) slightly annoying.


I think I know what you mean. do you think it is from the php or the host server?
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Postby III » Wed Nov 05, 2003 1:05 pm

from my wonderfully geeky girlfriend:

Average size of a page on the old eplaya: 38Kb
Average size of a page on the new eplaya: 100Kb
Average size of a page on the altplaya: 19Kb
Average size of a page on the 3playa: 10Kb
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Postby III » Wed Nov 05, 2003 1:10 pm

>do you think

i think it's from having to hit several dozen files and doing quite a bit of actual processing on a busy machine to generate pages that have more than 50% invisible html content that needs to be processed on the client side.

it all adds up.
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Postby DE FACTO » Wed Nov 05, 2003 1:10 pm

precipitate said:

Are you going to offer
equipment to every eplaya user who has a slow connection and is
therefore turned off by having to wait several seconds for each page to
load?


ok so I think the total is four. you, Bob, Trey and Mr. K.

yes I'd be willing. all seriousness though. your suggestion "It'd be nice if you could, in your personal
profile, elect not to see those things." is the best I've seen.

I hope I have not offended anyone here. I'm just serious about finding out all the problems because I intend to use the phpbbs myself plus I want to use my wireless at BM in 04.
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Postby III » Wed Nov 05, 2003 1:18 pm

>the time it takes to read it

one of the purposes of the 3playa is to be able to play around with styles to see how layout affects readability.

i found that having graphical stuff near the borders of the text, and having lots of horizontal dividers, whether it be lines or just boundaries between differently colored boxes, really serves to slow down my reading speed, as well as my ablity to absorb the content.

[snide comments elided]

as with precipitate, i realize the team is working on addressing this issue, and (having looked at the templates and lack of documentation myself) i realize that it's going to be a huge pain in the ass, and i appreciate their efforts to do so.
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Postby DE FACTO » Wed Nov 05, 2003 1:23 pm

Well looks like either way I'm going to run into slight problems because my main intrest is video broadcast and audio broadcast.

I'm really into the IPV6

any suggestions?
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Postby Kinetic II » Wed Nov 05, 2003 2:07 pm

Mr. K is being cheap and trying to keep Michele from spending so much money on play toys. All I gotta do is pick up the phone and call her and I can get another M4, upgrade the Verizon account to double the speed and do other tricks. HW is not the problem. (Michele is a good friend who I work for outside of Sprint).

It really comes down to not wanting to carry all that stuff. I want to have a full feature experience when I have my cable modem, and be able to trim things down when I use the PDA. I might be getting a laptop if the Sprint job stabilizes...Dell has a nice $2K line of credit ready for me to order one anytime I want to so I might be able to use the PDA for simpler things like my organizer and as an MP3 player. Anyway back to the topic, I simply want the ability to customize this.

And with that I've wasted too much space in this thread...I'll step back and let everyone sort it out. One last thing, DeFacto, you mentioned broadcast video....that's what we're using the M4's for. Filming in outstate Missouri and Kansas and sending it back to KC via satellite. It's very nice even if it's a bit slow.

And Trey, is 802.11 g working well for you?
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Postby DE FACTO » Wed Nov 05, 2003 2:14 pm

DeFacto, you mentioned broadcast video....that's what we're using the M4's for. Filming in outstate Missouri and Kansas and sending it back to KC via satellite. It's very nice even if it's a bit slow.


This would be valuble info for me. Are you streamming and if so are you doing IPV6?

what are you using to broadcast and recive with.
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Postby III » Wed Nov 05, 2003 2:20 pm

>working well

sure. though, as people point out, that if it's butted up against a dsl or cable modem you can't really tell the diff from 802.11b

but i like being able to post while i'm sitting on the toilet.
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Postby DE FACTO » Wed Nov 05, 2003 2:27 pm

III wrote:from my wonderfully geeky girlfriend:

Average size of a page on the old eplaya: 38Kb
Average size of a page on the new eplaya: 100Kb
Average size of a page on the altplaya: 19Kb
Average size of a page on the 3playa: 10Kb


what years are these statistics from....nevermind it does'nt matter
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Postby blikum » Wed Nov 05, 2003 3:35 pm

on all counts, agreed.

coming soon... new skins for this site that are user-selectable. i have one almost ready that I think is a good first step. i'm removing as many images as I could, removing visual clutter of lines and boxes, and optimizing the code to remove nested tables and other browser slow-ups.

right now we are working in the templates only, NOT the php itself, so we are a little limited to how far we can get under the hood at the moment.

so the next step is skins that are even more minimalized, a la 3playa. then... opening it up to you, the community, to create your own skins.

does that sound like we are going in the right direction?
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Postby Kinetic II » Wed Nov 05, 2003 3:36 pm

DeFacto, we don't use IPv6 even though I'm glad you mentioned it...I'll be activating it inside XP when I get home to play with it. With the M4 we basically connect it directly to the back of the cam and upload it to KC or SF, Michele is usually in Sausalito. Sometimes we send to both. To be honest this is one area that I'm technically weak on. I grab the cam and go shoot stuff.
The latest project is covering all of the Missouri River bridges in Missouri, filming the construction of the Grandview Triangle reconstruction, www.kctriangle.org, and that's the current stuff.
In the next two weeks we're interviewing the Southern Missouri COMET or special inter-agency drug team and hopefully going with them on a meth bust, plus we're filming stuff about old Route 66 and a screwed up bridge reconstruction project on I-44.

This is on top of my day job with Sprint, my lobbying work, and all the other stuff I do. So when I say I'm on the go, I meant it. And I have found ways to be pretty much connected 24x7 if I want.
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Postby PJ » Wed Nov 05, 2003 5:36 pm

FWIW I have a fast PC, running an older (smaller) OS (WinME), with fast graphics hardware and a fast Internet connection. I'm geographically-farther from the various servers than are sundry Californians. And my E-Playa page load speeds and latency are both quite irritating, whereas the 3playa is nearly instantaneous. (Except for the occasional linked image, but those come from servers all over the world.)
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Postby DE FACTO » Wed Nov 05, 2003 5:42 pm

PJ wrote:FWIW I have a fast PC, running an older (smaller) OS (WinME), with fast graphics hardware and a fast Internet connection. I'm geographically-farther from the various servers than are sundry Californians. And my E-Playa page load speeds and latency are both quite irritating, whereas the 3playa is nearly instantaneous. (Except for the occasional linked image, but those come from servers all over the world.)


Ok I'll admit I do not use WinMe since microsoft does not support that and 98 anymore so I dont know about that. What browser are you using? and are you upgraded with all the updates?
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