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Confluence niggle

update 2006-02-01: backbutton stuff.

I like Confluence. But using underscores for emphasis and asterisks for bold instead of quotes is a nuisance (on the basis that I shouldn't need to use a shift key to do basic formatting). And then underscore gets mapped onto the plus sign, which doesn't make sense, whereas underscore would makes sense for... underscore. Using hX for calling out headings is nice tho'.

Confluence seems to have some nasty back-button behaviour that lets you lose content. When you edit a page you can flip back between the edit and preview modes using the tabs - that works fine. But if you go to the back button on preview to "get back" to the edit you don't back to the edit, you go back to the page itself - clicking forward takes you the edit screen but with the content as it was at the last save point, since nothing was sent to the server as you were flipping between preview and edit. I've lost content 3 days in a row with this - it sucks. Optimizing server roundtrips at the risk of losing content doesn't seem like a good tradeoff. And "just use rich text editing" isn't a good enough answer to this. update: Charles Miller from the comments - "I'm surprised we don't save a draft when you flip between preview and edit, though. I've filed this to be fixed for the next release: http://jira.atlassian.com/browse/CONF-5366". Sweet!


February 1, 2006 09:00 PM

Comments

Jason Yip
(January 30, 2006 03:06 AM #)

These are more issues of Textile, than Confluence per se. Some kind of pluggable wiki language might be an interesting feature to add though.

Dominic Mitchell
(January 30, 2006 08:31 AM #)

Funny. I felt exactly the opposite when I first came up against mediawiki markup. Why are they using quotes for italics? Why don't they uses slashes or underscores like people have been doing in email since the dawn of time?

Anyway, after a few goes, you kind of get used to whichever way.

As to textile, it's worthwhile keeping the quick reference handy.

Charles Miller
(February 1, 2006 09:59 PM #)

Like Dominic, I find the textile _italic_ and *bold* markup more natural, having used it informally in email for the last decade or so. I guess it's one of those "What you're used to" things. (Also, what's wrong with the shift key?)

The back-button problem is more worrying. I'm not sure how to fix that. The round-trip for reloading the edit page is quite a hefty one, and there are a lot of good reasons for avoiding it (the Javascript burden of loading the edit page is a bit messy).

I'm surprised we don't save a draft when you flip between preview and edit, though. I've filed this to be fixed for the next release: http://jira.atlassian.com/browse/CONF-5366

Bill de hOra
(February 2, 2006 09:24 AM #)

Hi Charles,

"Like Dominic, I find the textile _italic_ and *bold* markup more natural, having used it informally in email for the last decade or so. I guess it's one of those "What you're used to" things. (Also, what's wrong with the shift key?)"

I type slower with a shift key compared to using '/'. Although 'shift__' it probably beats typing in 19 single quotes or whatever it is.

"The back-button problem is more worrying. I'm not sure how to fix that. The round-trip for reloading the edit page is quite a hefty one, and there are a lot of good reasons for avoiding it (the Javascript burden of loading the edit page is a bit messy)."

The back button is hateful, but we're all conditioned to use it - the problem I have is reflexively hitting back instead of the edit tab - it's not actually something I'd expect to work if you asked me. All the workarounds I could think of sound complicated. But it would be interesting though to never have to save a wiki page - ever since I started using IDEA, I see having to save a file as something as something the app should be taking care of - ie if Word/Oo autosaved my docs that would be very cool.

"I'm surprised we don't save a draft when you flip between preview and edit, though. I've filed this to be fixed for the next release: http://jira.atlassian.com/browse/CONF-5366"

Sweet! I'll be sure to get have a corresponding Confluence Rocks entry running - there's a ton of cool stuff in there you guys aren't shouting about.

Jim
(February 4, 2006 06:43 PM #)

You can fix the back button problem by having the tabs normal links to #edit and #preview. Then you use setInterval to watch window.location, and if #edit or #preview shows up, you switch the display. Degrades nicely when Javascript is not available, and when you hit 'back' you go to the right place. Except in Internet Explorer. There's an inframe-based hack to work around that bug, I'm sure you can find it with Google.