On the subject of the forums... Answered
The forums are a very important part of Instructables, but I have noticed that a number of people do not find them as useful or workable as they might want, myself included. Things like vanishing comments and lack of notifications are the most common complaints (that I am aware of).
Here's a thought for the consideration of the development team and the members:
Why not "outsource" the forums, and possibly even the comment sections of projects?
I am thinking of a tool such as, for instance, Disqus, which a number of popular news and blog sites use for their comment sections, and also allows for general discussion within the Disqus site itself (a feature I have not used). It allows you to log into several sites with the same account, and alerts you to all the replies you get. It also allows comments to be voted up or down (although that is a very secondary feature in my opinion).
That is, of course, just one example of the various tools available, but I think there are other potential advantages to using something like this.
Anyhoo, the thought is out there.