Basically, right now, you open a page, click notification, it loads a couple of seconds and you see your notifications. This is from the Netherlands, I am going to assume it is instant in some countries and takes 5~ seconds in others.
I would like to suggest that, when you load a page, it immediately starts loading the notifications and then reloading notifications in the background adding notifications as they come.
I believe notifications are integral to serving the "facebook generation" that relies on content being given to them, opposed to searching for it. I'd really like for notifications to be a quick, instant check for everyone.
I believe IPB is with some configuration the best classic styled forum. I like Discourse's digest emails and community moderation a lot, XenForo's notification system, but IPB is the only software that seems complete and can be configured to get close to these systems.
I am yet to see what IPB4 shapes up to be, but IPB3 for me only really lacked in two areas, the mod community (high prices for simple mods, lacking some mods and integrations that would make sense) and user engagement (IPB3, especially unconfigured, really lags in trying to get people to post. It makes an assumption people come to the forum to find things to post on - opposed to showcasing good content, sending out digests, or automatically notifying people of anything they may be interested in). The latter can be largely countered with good configuration, the first I am hoping for IPB4 to fix.
Tl;dr, I think IPB is the most complete system. I do love the support, they're terrific folks.
I don't think this thread was meant as a compliment... It's starting to feel like a pattern, IPS changes something, users complain they want the old option back, the staff exclaims there's now an alternative, better way.
I don't personally think this looks good, responsive or not, I like my topic titles to be a very short identifier, not a long summary. I want to be able to glance over topics quickly, and want my users to be able to do that too. So why can't I have the option? I am glad you are happy, but I am not, and it seems some others in this thread aren't too.
I am sounding a bit harsh perhaps, I have always loved IPB and I think you guys do great work, but this pattern when it comes to IPS4 is really getting to me.
Oh, and it's possible to limit topic titles by character width opposed to amount of characters by abusing divs to calculate the width. Bet there's a PHP library for it too.
Odd, in Chrome with Grid View enabled on this community that doesn't seem to happen for me. mm. Imma try other stuff
Edit: Gridview on and off doesnt change anything as you'd expect (though oddly it seems it made a no picture icon appear as my avatar and your, guessing theyre doing upgrades or some stuff). Ill try other browsers in a bit, I want to see this myself :P
I'm not "blowing them down", I am pointing out that it's going to form an issue if that takes time.
I'm not overly concerned about IPS4's features and bugs, features can be replaced by mods and most bugs can be fixed without damage. I'm more concerned with things holding back developers. E.G. that people like Ehren (who makes a hell of a lot of great quality skins) couldn't even get started because of a broken designer mode for ages, or that any party that relies on integration can't start until this documentation is there (myself included, but there's some topics of others asking about it if you look back a bit. Though I could look at the code and go from there, I am not taking risks with such integral parts), I'm not entirely sure on modding documentation, but a quick look doesn't look overly enticing either.
In the end IPS4's features/skin aren't the key to IPS4' success or failure. I don't even like the new skin (especially the mobile skin), while it does help to have a solid base and a great experience from the get-go, in the end every community is different. We all want our own unique features, skins and in some cases we want the forum to be a part of the experience, instead of a "suite" dominating it. It's the modding/skins that matter. In my opinion, IPB3 reduced the amount of interesting mods available, I am hoping this time IPS4 will increase it again (as they have said they are adding a lot of juicyness for developers). Releasing such things a month after RC may sound fine, but it also means the first batch of newb clients are going to get IPS4 and go into an absolute hissyfit because nothing good is available for it. Nevermind the fact that everything currently undocumented - is also very likely not to be beta tested yet. Whilst some of them are fairly sensitive...
So no, I am not saying they suck, I give compliments when earned, but I do not intend to lay back and pray it ends up OK. Some parts of their direction already changed because customers stood up and made clear it had to be different. From my experience with IPS, their support is incredible and they are very active in improving the software, but i've to say I am fairly critical about rewriting software (code isn't milk, it doesn't go bad suddenly. It can be motivating to work with a fresh start, but it is also a risk), and a tad worried about IPS4. Communication has taken a serious fall for a few months now.