Exploring Solutions: Notifications

leisareichelt's picture

So, part of the problem that we need to solve involves notifications - being able to know when there's something going on that you might want to be a part of and being able to manage the noise.

At the moment, I'm thinking broadly about three solution areas:

  1. Messaging for Rapid/Frequent/Immediate: imagine if we had a little bot that looked at the things that you said you wanted to know about (tags, phases eg. 'testing', 'RTBC', 'Documentation' etc.) and perhaps other things and if it found something that matched (or if someone particularly asked for you) it sent off a message to IRC or Twitter or some other messaging service - ping! This, of course, is completely opt in/configurable.

  2. Use Email for Digest/Summary: if you get too many emails, you ignore email. Email is not a great way to keep on top of important/urgent but intensive requests for attention. So, imagine if, instead, we could aggregate the above requests into a nice email that sent itself according to some business rules that went something like this: Once there are x requests, then send an email (perhaps you could set that number yourself depending on how many requests you get and how important it is that you get them in a timely manner), and supplement that with 'or if total is less than x , send a digest of all requests received every xhrs/days (again, you control the frequency).

  3. Dashboard when you want an overview & want to explore opportunities to engage: We redesign the dashboard so that it (even) better supports our ability to see not only the issues we're already engaged in but the ones that the system and people think we might be interested in engaging with.

I'd totally love those three things right now. Would you? (Or is there something better/different/extra that you'd prefer?)


hasten to add....

leisareichelt's picture

I'm sure, of course, that all of these have been dreamed up previously and that in fact there are modules for this already...
Don't mean to suggest that these are new ideas. I know how annoying fresh enthusiasm for ancient desires can be.

leisa reichelt - disambiguity.com

Nice. Maybe there's an

yoroy's picture
  1. Nice. Maybe there's an inbetweenish version where you have an inbox(3 unread) on your profile page too?

  2. While in Chicago, Derek (dww) and I worked a bit on bundling all existing email notification admin screens for your d.o. account. There are a couple of thousand contributors who manage the issue queues for their own projects entirely via email. I'll see if I can dig up the issue.

  3. I've been thinking we could do a little design challenge for the community: have people mockup their most-wanted d.o. dashboard widget. For example I sketch-noted a dashboard block yesterday where you could ask Druplicon (the IRC bot) questions like you can in IRC itself.


Jeff Burnz's picture

Either you missed something or its being looked at in another thread but its the "subscribe" flag for issues, and a way to manage these subscriptions - essential an update fires a notification within the Durpal project/tracker system, possible integrates with #1.

This seems to be split out of http://groups.drupal.org/node/136164 but does not reference it, where that issue does not broach subscribe flag either, which is probably the most requested feature of all time.

I think #1 has a lot of merit, but the subscribe flag needs to come first with notification methods being options.

2 would be interesting but not something I would use within the scope of my own projects - I want instant email notification for project issues, Gmail takes care of threading these for me. It would be interesting to me as an option for subscribe flag for projects where I am not the maintainer, to receive a daily or weekly digest for a particular issue - this would be very useful for core development issue queues.

3 Dashboard, well frankly I just don't use it. Instead of have bookmarks that take me to the full version of things, such as my tracker, D8 issue queue, saved searches for things I am interested and so on, my browser bookmarks bar is more flexible and usable than Dashboard so for me its trying to solve a problem that is already solved. If I try to clutter everything I need into the Dashboard its, well, cluttered, difficult to scan the doesnt really help me get my tasks done. That said, if I could replace the whole thing with the single block of "stuff you might be interested in" then I would probably use it.

I just have to jump in here

linclark.research's picture

I just have to jump in here because I love the hell out of the Dashboard. My involvement has skyrocketed between it and the move to git. I do think that the addition of suggested opportunities to engage could make it even better, though.

I like killes' proposal of a

Frando's picture

I like killes' proposal of a twitter-style notification and messaging system on drupal.org a lot. He has published a detailed document on it, see http://groups.drupal.org/node/138269. While the document is mostly technical, it also includes an overview of how the system would work in practice. Basically, you could ping persons and topics everywhere in every post by adding @username or #topic in the post or comment. The system would then aggregate them. Every user can, on his dashboard, add blocks to follow any person or topic.

While this is not a full solution to the problem, I think because it is highly dynamic it can be very useful, especially if new things emerge or if you want to ping specific persons about something.

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