An attempt to create bugs in the commenting system.

Post comments here, attempting to create errors in the commenting system.

Keep track of the steps you take to create those errors.

Post a comment detailing those steps here, so that others can try to recreate your error.

Then we'll get the error fixed!

Navigating large-response topics

*****EDIT 20110115@0930PST*****

  • **When clicking on a forum topic, the default sort is "active" when clicking prev/next the link changes the sort to "newest" changing the order of comments.
  • **When a comment thread is featured, the order of the posts change from being ordered by threads, to ordered chronologically (see photos in comments for details)
  • **When you comment, there's an inability to reply to the comment you just left. (not fixed-feature)
  • **When responding to a lot of comments without replying, comments get double posted (occasionally)
## = has been passed along to the dev team to look into and fix
** = Fixed/Done
********END EDIT********

(more awesome bug photos)

Picture of An attempt to create bugs in the commenting system.
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Kiteman5 years ago
Plenty of threads and sub-threads, folks, and add pictures as well, please!
kelseymh5 years ago

The commenting bugs I know about are

  • disappearances, where a comment get stuck in the filters and never released;
  • next/prev discrepancies;
  • Deep-thread collisions with the sidebar.

The latter two will not show up until there are more than one page's worth of comments posted. This is my contribution to starting the population.

We're trying...
Well, yeah; some people tell me I'm pretty trying, too...
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
Kiteman Kiteman5 years ago
...to replicate...

(Oh, a whole car-park just floated past on the news - glad I'm not in Oz)
Kiteman Kiteman5 years ago
...the long-thread...
Kiteman Kiteman5 years ago
...bug here.
(Warning, Star Trek nonsense ahead)

So, TNG or Voyager?

<3 Star Trek! I think my fav is ST:Ent.
Why not the original series?

I find it too...campy/cheesy; it's distracting and I can't manage to suspend reality, and laughing at it gets old fast. I'm too spoiled to modern CGI and special effects, I guess...
You'll be no good with old DR Who then.

The giant rats in Talons of Weng-Chiang, plus the little Peking Homunculus, completely freaked out a nine-year-old Kite - I genuinely watched it from behind the sofa.

Wait...what the sam hill is a Peking Homunculus? Part of the brain structure of a Chinese individual?
It was a little robot with a pig brain instead of a computer, which almost started WW6

Kiteman Kiteman5 years ago
Kiteman Kiteman5 years ago
Kiteman Kiteman5 years ago
And with this reply, we should now have NEXT/PREV buttons available to demonstrate the confusion :-)
Not that I can see...
See my top-level post for a detailed description, and a possible explanation. I normally view forum topics sorted by active, but the next button apparently has "sort=NEWEST" hardcoded. With two different sorts, the indexing of comments is naturally different, leading to the observed behaviour.
Sadly, I suspect that's true...

xD Behind the couch, I love it.
What similar thing did the US have? Twilight Zone?
You know, I don't know (before my time!). I would guess Twilight Zone, the original Star Trek, or...hm. I know I've heard of creepy shows from 30 years ago, but I'd have to think what they would have been...assorted "scary monsters, yo" type shows is the closest I can come atm.

...and 4th bug?

The full text of my comment read (with words replacing the >'s so they don't get converted:

(Uh...whoops. Didn't mean to make the whole stinkin' thing (anglebracket)strong(anglebracket) - sorry.)

Shouldn't the dash have been bolded, along with "sorry.)"?
You need to close markup tags as well as open them, thus:

<strong>this text is bold</strong>


this text is bold

(BTW, I got the literal angle brackets by using HTML entities -- ampersand lt semicolon and ampersand gt semicolon.)
Well, duh. :P I just hit "Post" too soon by accident.

The weird thing, though, is that it seems to have bolded everything after it anyway - but it didn't bold the dash, which was after it.

(Ah, thanks - I couldn't remember how to get them)
(Here's another inadvertent example of Bug no. 3)
Uh, I know it's off topic, but I can't post anything BUT comments here. Yes, I am overemphasizing because I can't post a question or forum topic (and the like) so I have no other choice but to post a comment somewhere on the bugs section.
I'll pass this on for you.
Much appreciated!
Kiteman5 years ago

Is this topic now redundant?

Or is it lying on the slab, waiting for the Dev Team to poke at its innards?

StumpChunkman (author)  Kiteman5 years ago
I like to think it's lying in wait, in case we should ever need it again.

There's also the issue of the occasional double post, which would be nice to find the cause of (occasional sucks).
Oh, it's...

...a zombie topic!
ChrysN5 years ago
I found an interesting effect of this bug. This morning when I checked out my You page it said that There have been 1548 comments on your instructables, forum topics, and/or your Orangeboard. Comment 1548 was made on my forum topic. http://www.instructables.com/community/Instructables-Drawing-Contest-with-Grand-Prize-of-/.
When I replied to this comment and went back to my You page it said that I had 1547 comments and the one that I had replied to has disappeared.  Now I have an orphaned reply on the forum.
ChrysN ChrysN5 years ago
It's okay now the comment came back!
StumpChunkman (author)  ChrysN5 years ago
Well that's good, we don't want comments to go missing.
ostomesto5 years ago
yea i know about the unablity to post topics bug. I had to find the most popular topic in here and comment since I couldn't post a new one. and this was the most popular. but when ever i try to preview a new topic it wont let me. I have lost so much typing trying to get it to work. I was trying to spark popularity of my question I asked that INCLUDES A FREE PATCH TO THE PERSON WITH BEST IDEA. so click on my profile and go to questions and you will see it. i need people to know wbout it thats why i included the free patch.
StumpChunkman (author)  ostomesto5 years ago
So, do you actually have a problem you need help with, or did you just want to promote your question?
kelseymh5 years ago


Take a look at the featured comment thread which starts with my initial comment. Caitlinsdads' reply, "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder" (Jan 11, 2011. 2:21 PM) was a direct response to my comment at 2:12 pm.

The order of comments has been scrambled by the sticky tag. Specifically, the entire subthread is now ordered strictly chronologically, rather than threadwise.

StumpChunkman (author)  kelseymh5 years ago
I'm not sure I completely understand this bug....I'm going to try to unfeature and refeature and take screenshots of both. Hopefully that'll help.
If you do that, make *sure* you do a hard reload each time. Changing the flag does not cause the page to be reloaded.
StumpChunkman (author)  kelseymh5 years ago
got it...give me a minute to stitch the photo's together.
StumpChunkman (author)  StumpChunkman5 years ago
Both images so the same comment thread. One shows the comment thread featured, the other doesn't. I'll let you figure out which is which. (it shouldn't be too hard)

Perfect! And you can see exactly what happens. When the top-level comment gets stickied, my reply, made at 2:12 pm percolates upward from being below the entire Kiteman thread, to being adjacent to Kiteman's own 2:12 pm reply.
StumpChunkman (author)  StumpChunkman5 years ago
In case you want to see those images full size...

Not Featured
kelseymh5 years ago

The Next/Prev Bug is Alive!

With 107 comments in place, I confirm the next/prev bug is operating, and I think I've even figured it out (see the end of this post). I'm viewing this topic "sorted by active" (the default).

The last comment on the first page (1-100) is mine from 11 Jan at 5:50 pm (first image below).

On the same page, Matt's thread beginning "This is going to be totally Awesome!" appears about halfway down the page (second image below).

But then, following the next >> link shows Matt's thread again, this time claiming it's comment #101 (third image below).

And I think I see why! Notice in that third image, the "sort by:" flag has changed to newest (instead of active). The URL for the next >> button has "sort=NEWEST" hardwired in. I believe that the code should be set up to pass the user's same sorting request into the next and previous buttons as is currently displayed.

StumpChunkman (author)  kelseymh5 years ago
I tried to add a list in the topic, let me know if there's anything you'd change in what I wrote, or anything I missed. (I steps with parenthesis are duplicatable but not purposefully)
StumpChunkman (author)  kelseymh5 years ago
Grrr...can't reply to myself. So, yeah, the next/prev buttons if you look at the html default to newest. If you change newest to active on page 2, you'll see the continuation of the threads (because they're no other easy way to accomplish this feat). One thing that was brought up, is why there's even a sorting option for comments in the forum. Is there anyone who likes the sort option for any reason in forum topics?
The sorting option can be confusing, but it is also useful. The "active" sort option apparently puts the threads in chronological order according to the top-level comment. The "newest" sort option puts the threads in reverse chronological order according to the most recent comment found anywhere in each thread. The "oldest" option is the inverse of "newest."
StumpChunkman (author)  kelseymh5 years ago
I'll let him know...but...there's a chance those might be gone in the near future.
Hi, Matt. For the reply-to-yourself issue, see my 12 Jan 2011 2:01 pm comment. I think it's because the actions with the comment entry box use JS to dynamically modify the local page, rather than fetching an updated version from the server. Please pass on to Rachel that those dynamic updates are apparently inconsistent with what the server "would have generated," leading to the bugs we see.
StumpChunkman (author)  kelseymh5 years ago
Nice catch! I noticed the same thing, and I thought it might have been due to other threads getting comments on them while I was reading everything. But in this case, that is not the case. Lemmie go chat with some smarter people then myself...
Dude, you make it so easy :-) The correct reply, of course, is "They shouldn't be too hard to find..."
Shadowman395 years ago
So, all we do is post comments and reply to them?
Yes. Did you follow the link Matt included in the topic text, to see the bug that is being investigated here? You can also read my sticky comment (above) for the list of other comment-related bugs I knew about at the start of this thread; and you can scan through some of the comments to see bugs people have observed while posting.
Yep, I've had that bug for a long time now (the one with the next/previous pages).
Can't seem to reproduce bugs, but let's get the count up to 100 and break the "next" button!!
Kiteman Kiteman5 years ago
(Refresh) 93
kelseymh5 years ago
We're at 88 comments, now.
Ah, ha! I just reproduced the "can't reply to myself" bug which LiRa mentioned. If you write a new top-level comment, and hit the [post comment] button, then when the page comes back the JS hiding behind the REPLY link doesn't work.

I suspect that the posting action doesn't actually regenerate the page with a server-side query, but rather just modifies the local HTML cache with the new comment block (assuming that's possible with HTML4). Note also that the regenerated page has the same "nesting level" bug for which Matt posted pictures.

Doing an immediate refresh takes care of it, and REPLY works fine.
Kiteman5 years ago
Ohh, this would be nice to own...
What is it?
It's a watchmaker's lathe - you turn the big wheel by hand, and work your piece on the shaft to the left (see the strings?) with your other.

Wow, nice!
>blows into microphone<
StumpChunkman (author)  Kiteman5 years ago
That's a pretty picture, and this is my first test!
Kiteman5 years ago
Speaking of bugs, I made this little vibrobot at the last UK Meet.

I was going to use the toothbrush bristles as legs, but I accidentally hot-glued them into a large blob.

Fortunately, I'd found a toy tyre on the pavement just an hour before, and it was still in my pocket.

Why is it called a vicrobot - does it move by vibrating?
The blue wiggly bit, the battery and the switch all came from an electric toothbrush.
I love that you just pick up random stuff, too! :D
The best thing that ever happens to any boy is the discovery of pockets.

Beats a handbag any day of the week.

Couldn't agree more - that's why I refuse to carry one. :p
It looks like it walked backward into oblivion ;-)
It lives on top of the computer on my lab desk at school, to amuse passing grown-ups with nothing better to do.

Kiteman5 years ago
I just remembered - the last topic I saw this happen to had a lot of photos...

Look what my Science clubbers made!
What is it? Does it explode? And if not, why not?
It's a homopolar motor (see the small rare-earth magnet under the AA cell?) the wire loop spins.

Utterly useless as a motor, but a fun way to while away an hour with the kiddies, although they were slightly more taken with the pack of 128 tiny rare-earth magnets...

(Have a look at Shoemaker's videos.)
Thanks! I see it now...I couldn't get any clear sense of scale; the AA battery actually looked about the size of a can of cleaning powder.
It's an AA cell, and the magnets are only about 5mm cubes.

Kiteman Kiteman5 years ago
We did have ten 20mm-diameter neodymium magnets, but they were (we believe) stolen from my colleague's lab.

These teeny magnets are my own, which I took to school especially for the motors.
Who would do such a dastardly deed?!
I don't know, but they probably hope I never find out.
StumpChunkman (author)  kelseymh5 years ago
We don't want exploding things...

...though, what would happen if you had a high voltage capacitor, charged up, and you touched the ends together (with a non conductive material)?
Jacob's ladder!

/speaks from experience

Well, that is, if you provide two metal protrusions long enough for it to climb up...

2nd bug

I couldn't reply to my own comment after I posted it, and needed to refresh the page.

3rd bug!

After I posted my first "2nd bug" comment, I typed a new reply to my comment time-stamped 4:36 PM, and instead it posted a duplicate of the "2nd bug" one.

(Uh...whoops. Didn't mean to make the whole stinkin' thing - sorry.)
...and 4th bug?

The full text of my comment read (with words replacing the >'s so they don't get converted:

(Uh...whoops. Didn't mean to make the whole stinkin' thing (anglebracket)strong(anglebracket) - sorry.)

Shouldn't the dash have been bolded, along with "sorry.)"?
StumpChunkman (author)  Lithium Rain5 years ago
I think you've ran across something that happens to me a lot. When I reply to a lot of comments on one page, occasionaly one comment will superman all the other comments out of existance, and be the reply comment to everything. It's tough to replicate, but it happens everyone so often for me. Or did you mean to post this exact same comment twice?

I was thinking with mine, when you reply to someone, it indents their response...so if you have a bunch of first level comments, it'll set the one you replied to to the second level. I think if you reply to another first level above that one, it might work. Reading this, I don't think it makes a lick of sense, so I'm going to grab a screenshot, and do another post with pics! Yay pics!
I did not mean to post the exact same comment twice - the "superman" bug hit!

I'm attempting to reproduce it, but haven't been able to so far (although I HAVE been able to reproduce the "can't reply at all" bug - it seems to happen when I try to reply to myself, but only sometimes). I'll keep trying.
Edit: the "can't reply at all" isn't very clear - I mean, I can't reply to *myself* at all. Further testing reveals that at times when I try to reply to myself, I can't, but can reply to others (I'll try to narrow down what's causing it for sure).
StumpChunkman (author)  StumpChunkman5 years ago
grrr...I can't get it to work...but...here's what I'm talking about.

First image, the comments untouched.

Second image, the comments if I hit reply and cancel (notice the indent)

Last image, after I comment and before I reload the page (again indented)

I messed with it a few times, but couldn't get anything to happen. Like I said, it's a touchy thing.  It seems to happen to me a lot on the username topic when I reply to a lot of people there without refreshing though.  Care to give it a go, see if you can't figure out what's causing your reposts?
This is a test comment attempting to replicate the "repost" error. If there are two of them, this worked.
That test did not reproduce the bug I was aiming for, but it did reproduce the bug of not being able to reply at all.
That's correct. I'm pretty sure it's a bug in the JS, or at the back end, that when you reply, the level where your reply will be gets put into a local variable which overwrites the level of the comment to which you are replying. The database doesn't get corrupted (of course), which is why the page refresh fixes the presentation.
Interesting! Your 4:41 post does have the last word and parenthesis bolded, at least with my browser. What you described is not valid HTML, but many modern browsers try to deal with such things "intelligently."