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Links opening in a new tab/window

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Links opening in a new tab/window

Unread postby Weichenhebel » Sat Oct 22, 2011 4:43 pm

Is there a simple tweak in the forum general setup that would force links opening in a new browser window (or tab)? As it is, the link opens replacing the current page, which isn't the best solution IMHO. Of course I know about the 'right click' trick, but it would be better if the new window/tab were the default.
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Re: Links opening in a new tab/window

Unread postby Danny252 » Sat Oct 22, 2011 7:28 pm

Middle mouse button works for just about every browser I've tried. Ctrl-click should work too, but there's some weird script on the forum which intercepts clicks away from the text (the blue highlighting that comes up whenever you hover over a thread) and forces the link to be opened in both the current tab and a new one.
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Re: Links opening in a new tab/window

Unread postby John Hinson » Sun Oct 23, 2011 4:52 am

Hi Peoples,

This question has been asked before - see:
viewtopic.php?f=4&t=2288
viewtopic.php?f=4&t=1347

I agree it can be an irritation but the current web standards dictate that browsers should not keep opening new windows. The developers of the software stick tightly to the standards because thousands of people use the software and they feel they would receive more complaints if they didn't. It would be nice to have the option to switch it on or off but unfortunately it isn't there.

I have just got into the habit of holding the Ctrl key down when following an external link; I often do that on other sites too.

I haven't followed Danny's suggestion of using the middle mouse button before - that's a good one. My mouse doesn't have a middle button as such but pressing down on the wheel works the same.

Danny - be assured there isn't a "weird script on the forum intercepting clicks away from the text". What you are experiencing may be a browser issue but I haven't ever experienced this. Being a web developer I have a huge number of browsers set up that I can test with although it is impossible to reproduce every possible situation owing to the high levels of configuration available.

Best wishes,

John
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Re: Links opening in a new tab/window

Unread postby John Webb » Sun Oct 23, 2011 11:56 am

I find "Shift-left click" opens up a separate browser window completely independent of the existing one.
"Control-left click" opens up a new tab so you have to move between the two tabs to see what's what.
So I use the first method most as I think it is more convenient - you can view the post with the link as well as the subject of the link. (This is with Internet Explorer 9)
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Re: Links opening in a new tab/window

Unread postby Danny252 » Sun Oct 23, 2011 12:22 pm

signalman wrote:Danny - be assured there isn't a "weird script on the forum intercepting clicks away from the text". What you are experiencing may be a browser issue but I haven't ever experienced this. Being a web developer I have a huge number of browsers set up that I can test with although it is impossible to reproduce every possible situation owing to the high levels of configuration available


Really? I've never seen the behaviour on phpBB forums before - it's presumably an option somewhere in the software if you didn't intentionally add it. Either way, MMB works fine for me!
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Re: Links opening in a new tab/window

Unread postby John Hinson » Sun Oct 23, 2011 12:28 pm

Danny252 wrote:Really? I've never seen the behaviour on phpBB forums before - it's presumably an option somewhere in the software if you didn't intentionally add it.

I don't think so, Danny.

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Re: Links opening in a new tab/window

Unread postby Danny252 » Sun Oct 23, 2011 1:32 pm

Having tested, it's something associated with the "Caledonian" board style - neither the "Midland" nor "Southern" styles have the click interception.
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Re: Links opening in a new tab/window

Unread postby Weichenhebel » Sun Oct 23, 2011 3:14 pm

signalman wrote:This question has been asked before
Oops, I missed it, my apologies.

signalman wrote:the current web standards dictate that browsers should not keep opening new windows
????? Source, please.

A possibility to open a new window has existed since times immemorial (in the WWW timescale of course), starting with <a href=.... target="_blank">. The developers use it according to their personal preferences and common sense, not because there is a rule declaring this trick legal/illegal (delete as applicable).

Ok, I understand that this is not configurable in phpBB, or if it is, your preference is not to turn it on. Minor inconvenience, but not exactly a show stopper.
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Re: Links opening in a new tab/window

Unread postby John Hinson » Sun Oct 23, 2011 6:54 pm

I have tried to be both patient and polite on this subject but I am beginning to feel a little insulted by the inferences that a) I don't know how to configure the PHPBB application correctly, b) that I don't know of simple HTML code and c) that the PHPBB application has some script cunningly designed to disrupt normal activity.

Weichenhebel wrote:????? Source, please.

The answer is at http://www.w3.org/TR/xhtml1/ . Or more correctly, it is not there, because the feature no longer exists.

Weichenhebel wrote:A possibility to open a new window has existed since times immemorial (in the WWW timescale of course), starting with <a href=.... target="_blank">.

Yes, thankyou, as a developer I do understand straightforward HTML code but does not exist in XHTML 1.0. Discontinued. Gone. Vamoose!

Weichenhebel wrote:The developers use it according to their personal preferences and common sense, not because there is a rule declaring this trick legal/illegal (delete as applicable).

A good developer writes accurate code that can be validated at http://www.w3c.com, otherwise there will be browser issues - if not now then there will be in the future.

Weichenhebel wrote:Ok, I understand that this is not configurable in phpBB, or if it is, your preference is not to turn it on.

Please see http://www.phpbb.com/kb/article/links-o ... w-windows/. It is not me being obstinate or ignorant as is suggested.

That page offers a manual modification. Yes, I could implement this, but it would be yet another chunk of work to be added to the list of things to do each time the PHPBB application undergoes an upgrade. This is a massive enough task as it is, it is not like updating your own computer's software with one click.

Danny252 wrote:Having tested, it's something associated with the "Caledonian" board style - neither the "Midland" nor "Southern" styles have the click interception.

I'm sorry, but my testing proves otherwise. I have just tested on two versions of IE and also the latest Firefox and everything is ticketyboo. When you made the original comment I spent a considerable amount of time testing across five browsers on two different operating systems and I cannot fault it. I'm not saying others won't experience the same as you do but it is not an issue with the PHPBB application and must be something local to your machine, be it the graphics driver, your browser settings or whatever. I would invite you to make your own tests across different machines, operating systems and browsers and I that may enable you to narrow things down.

I would mention that I spend a lot of time working in the background to keep this forum alive and well, and most of all secure. But it doesn't cost you a penny. If you don't like the way I run it, you don't have to use it!

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Re: Links opening in a new tab/window

Unread postby Danny252 » Sun Oct 23, 2011 8:10 pm

signalman wrote:
Danny252 wrote:Having tested, it's something associated with the "Caledonian" board style - neither the "Midland" nor "Southern" styles have the click interception.

I'm sorry, but my testing proves otherwise. I have just tested on two versions of IE and also the latest Firefox and everything is ticketyboo.


Seeing as the colour change and click interception can be seen written into the page code on the Caledonian style, it should entirely machine or browser independent:
Code: Select all
<tr class="forumrow" onclick="window.location.href='./viewforum.php?f=10';">

Code: Select all
.forumrow:hover {background-image: url('./images/forumrow_hover.png');}

Do you not get that output in the forum code/CSS, nor a blue highlight when hovering over forum/topic, nor the ability to enter a forum/topic even by clicking somewhere in the blank space in the same row? I would be very confused if the forum were somehow outputting one version of the page for me and another for you, despite using the same forum style.

Though I've changed style to one without that "feature" now I've discovered there's alternatives, so if you aren't inclined to try and edit the Caledonian style (and it's not an intentional feature), I'll survive!
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Re: Links opening in a new tab/window

Unread postby John Hinson » Sun Oct 23, 2011 10:09 pm

Danny252 wrote:Seeing as the colour change and click interception can be seen written into the page code on the Caledonian style, it should entirely machine or browser independent:
Code: Select all
<tr class="forumrow" onclick="window.location.href='./viewforum.php?f=10';">

Code: Select all
.forumrow:hover {background-image: url('./images/forumrow_hover.png');}

Do you not get that output in the forum code/CSS, nor a blue highlight when hovering over forum/topic, nor the ability to enter a forum/topic even by clicking somewhere in the blank space in the same row? I would be very confused if the forum were somehow outputting one version of the page for me and another for you, despite using the same forum style.

That code loads a graduated background image when the mouse is placed over a link. Here it is if you want to look at it:
http://signalbox.org/forum/styles/SkyLi ... _hover.png
Its a graded image which shows when you pass the mouse over (for example) the list of forum sections. It is only a few pixels high because it repeats to fill the area, thus speeding up page loading time. Other colour schemes may not use that feature. It also allows you to click anywhere in that graduated area. So what? Now at least I know what you mean by "some weird script on the forum which intercepts clicks away from the text" but it is perfectly normal and legitimate coding and it does not (for me) "force the link to be opened in both the current tab and a new one". I've now tested this for you three times in multiple situations and am quite certain of this and don't see why I should waste my time any further on the subject. It may be a specific operating system/browser/version/settings issue but it is not the forum that is causing that to happen. As I mentioned above the PHPBB application has been written to comply 100% with the laid down standards and this is one jolly good reason that it is.

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Re: Links opening in a new tab/window

Unread postby Weichenhebel » Tue Oct 25, 2011 5:14 pm

signalman wrote:I have tried to be both patient and polite on this subject but I am beginning to feel a little insulted by the inferences that a) I don't know how to configure the PHPBB application correctly, b) that I don't know of simple HTML code [...] It is not me being obstinate or ignorant as is suggested

I am perfectly capable of forming, and expressing in writing, my own opinion about your skills and character; see below. Do not put your words in my mouth.

A possible answer to a polite suggestion for a change could have been one of "yes, this can be, and will be, done", "no, this is technically impossible" or "this is possible but the current way is better". Instead you chose to have a public temper tantrum, accusing the me of all the things mentioned above. Rest assured I did not mean any of these at the time.

I often wondered what makes some people spent time and effort on running bulletin boards like this one. I imagined they were motivated by the wish to share expertise, to meet other people with similar interests, and other lofty ideas. In my naivety I overlooked one point: a desire to have one's own fiefdom, a piece of absolute monarchy on the internet, where any non-conformist could be told to put up or shut up or move elsewhere.

Until recently I did enjoy participating in the forum and learning from other members' expertise. But the enjoyment has been dampened by having been treated like a naughty child. I suggest you find another target of your attitude, as I'm not coming back here again.
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Re: Links opening in a new tab/window

Unread postby MRFS » Tue Oct 25, 2011 11:59 pm

Weichenhebel wrote:
signalman wrote:I have tried to be both patient and polite on this subject but I am beginning to feel a little insulted by the inferences that a) I don't know how to configure the PHPBB application correctly, b) that I don't know of simple HTML code [...] It is not me being obstinate or ignorant as is suggested

I am perfectly capable of forming, and expressing in writing, my own opinion about your skills and character; see below. Do not put your words in my mouth.

A possible answer to a polite suggestion for a change could have been one of "yes, this can be, and will be, done", "no, this is technically impossible" or "this is possible but the current way is better". Instead you chose to have a public temper tantrum, accusing the me of all the things mentioned above. Rest assured I did not mean any of these at the time.

I often wondered what makes some people spent time and effort on running bulletin boards like this one. I imagined they were motivated by the wish to share expertise, to meet other people with similar interests, and other lofty ideas. In my naivety I overlooked one point: a desire to have one's own fiefdom, a piece of absolute monarchy on the internet, where any non-conformist could be told to put up or shut up or move elsewhere.

Until recently I did enjoy participating in the forum and learning from other members' expertise. But the enjoyment has been dampened by having been treated like a naughty child. I suggest you find another target of your attitude, as I'm not coming back here again.


I shall miss your trawling of the press for vestigially related signalling issues; as to the rest look at what we get for free - yes, free. I personally think that given the effort that JH puts into the site and this forum he is allowed to treat it as his own personal fiefdom.

We are but guests here, and it ill behooves anyone to forget that. It does remind me of the 'Hotel California' at times; even so, I think you do JH a severe disservice as you have chosen yourself to appear as a non-conformist - there's a conversation to be had about the Connexional Chapels of the Countess of Huntingdon and the Strict and Particular Baptists, but not here!
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Re: Links opening in a new tab/window

Unread postby John Hinson » Wed Oct 26, 2011 5:19 am

There seem to be some misunderstandings here so I will explain in more detail - I did not write the code that runs the forum and it is an extremely complex application. The only fiddling I do with the code are approved modifications that I consider essential* but even so this is time-consuming and one small mistake could wreck the system.

* - the key one (and the most complicated) being a security feature to prevent automatic sign-ups and posting by spammers

It may be that the issues raised here will be resolved in the next upgrade when I apply it in which case it will be "problem solved" but looking at the correspondence on the developer's own forum on the subject I do not see much hope of that. I, and a zillion other users, would love an option to turn opening new windows on and off but it isn't there, as I have said before, and I don't think it ever will be. I don't understand why my responses on that are questioned and mistrusted. If we are to use PHPBB we have to put up with what we are given.

The colour schemes are also add-ons (tested and approved by the developers) and not my work. My only adjustment is the name of them and the replacement of a default logo by a signal box picture (and a link back to the main site).

I'm not sure if it is good or bad news (it depends how you look at it) but the forthcoming upgrade mentioned elsewhere is quite a major one and it appears that all third-party add-on colour schemes require an update to work with it and last time I looked only one of the three appears to be compatible. being third-party add-ons we cannot force their individual designers to modify them and it may be that we end up losing some of the schemes including the "Caledonian" one under discussion. We might end up reverting to the default scheme which may make it easier to use for those that use several forums across the internet although personally I prefer individual branding.

I will say that if, when I set this up, I had appreciated the level of background work that managing a forum entails, this one would not be here! Not a temper-tantrum, just a statement of fact.

I've now explained these issues three times, incrementally in more and more detail, in this thread alone. I'd be grateful if it could be left to rest now.

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Re: Links opening in a new tab/window

Unread postby Mike Hodgson » Wed Oct 26, 2011 2:53 pm

signalman wrote:There seem to be some misunderstandings here so I will explain in more detail - I did not write the code that runs the forum and it is an extremely complex application. The only fiddling I do with the code are approved modifications that I consider essential* but even so this is time-consuming and one small mistake could wreck the system.

* - the key one (and the most complicated) being a security feature to prevent automatic sign-ups and posting by spammers



With any package you have to accept its limitations, the defaults may not always suit, but it's a weakness in the software design that you have to make this change at all. I can't imagine there are any sites who want these ruddy spammers!

Your efforts are much appreciated John.


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