Forums! Private Messages! Comment Tracking!

Introduction: Forums! Private Messages! Comment Tracking!

About: Eric J. Wilhelm is the founder of Instructables. He has a Ph.D. from MIT in Mechanical Engineering. Eric believes in making technology accessible through understanding, and strives to inspire others to lear...

There are so many new features it makes my head spin! We hope you like them. If you find anything wrong, see a bug crawling around, or want something new, drop us a note in the bugs section by contributing a bug (you can also use the drop down navigation menu by clicking the triangle next to “Contribute” under the orange logo bar and selecting “Submit Bug” from the menu that pops down). As always, feel free to email me.


Each group now has a forum. There is also a “main forum” that can be found at or from the main navigation under Explore or Groups. The main forum will show you both topics posted in the main forum and topics posted to groups.

Topics act similarly as Instructables: They can have pictures, files, and videos; and the comments are threaded and can also have pictures, files, and videos.

You’ve been asking for forums and it’s sure taken us long enough to listen, huh?!? Forums are the place for ideas, questions, discussion, requests for help, and all manner of other things that aren’t quite Instructables. Have a blast!

Comment Tracking

Track all your comments in one place! The new comment tracker,, keeps track of comments on your Instructables, your orangeboard, your forum topics, and direct replies to comments you make. We’ll even send you email to let you know there’s new stuff to check out.

Right now, we’ll send you email for each new orangeboard and private message, and one email per day for comments and replies. You can set your email preferences here: and change your email address here: The emails will come from, so make sure not to file them under spam!

What the heck is an orangeboard, anyway? An orangeboard is like a whiteboard – a place where you brainstorm, keep track of ideas, and leave notes and announcements – except it’s on your user homepage. It’s essentially comments on your user ID, and we send you email to let you know there are new comments.

Private Messaging

Send another user a private message by clicking the “Send Private Message” button right under the picture on their user page. For example, We’ll send that user an email to let them know they have a new private message.

A slight word of caution: With forums, we’ll be a bit stricter in our definition of an Instructable. Instructables should be instructive, have proper warnings if they involve any potentially dangerous activities, and have nice pictures. If a picture really doesn’t add anything and there’s lots of instruction in the text, that’s ok. Check the Human Readable Terms of Service for more thoughts on what makes an Instructable.

Also, be nice! If you don’t have something positive or constructive to say, don’t say anything! Mean-spirited and insulting comments will not be tolerated. If you don’t like something, it’s possible to express that in a constructive way. Users that habitually make nasty comments will be banned.



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    18 Discussions

    The link using which one can keep track of all of one's comments isn't accessible.
    I request you guys to kindly fix it.

    Is there any other way of keeping track of one's comments.


    I was wondering. How do you post pictures in your comments?

    After poking around for awhile, I still can't seem to locate the feature I'm looking for.

    Is there a way for me to get a list of comments that I have made? Backtalk only gives me comments that others have left in reply to my comments or to me (on my instructables or orangeboard).

    I want, with just a couple of screen clicks, to be able to review and remind myself of everything I've written. Searching on a userid can be rather inconvenient, especially if the name is also a common word. And maintaining my own log (on paper or on my computer) to make a note of it every time I say something would be downright impractical.

    With online bulletin boards and similar, I often lose track of what discussions or posts I was following and can't remember where, when, what, or even whether I've contributed. Most online fora I've encountered have a function for me to list all comments I've made.

    Now, I realize that I can easily locate the instructables I was interested in if I favorite them. But I would rather not have to scan through hundreds of comments on each just to see if any of the comments were mine. Also, I would want to keep my Favorites list down to a reasonable number, and that would mean un-faveing ones I'm not really interested in, even if I have made comments on them.

    2 replies

    You can delete a comment for a short time after you post it.

    Howdy - I am wondering if thereis a way to turn off the e-mail notification when you get a new comment.... Thanks! All the new features are awesome!

    2 replies

    WEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEe party at my house (no not realy) this is great!!! How long have you guys been working on this for???

    1 reply

    Any chance of an elite instructable feed? Only projects with a certain number of stars, or approved by moderators or... at least some type of filtering?? I would like to be alerted when there's new content, but can stand to miss "How to make an airplane" 's.

    2 replies

    Great idea! How about a list of date-ordered projects that have received a rating greater than zero?

    Its cool! There is so much, I don't know what to start with!