moderated Repeating request for character limit in auto signature


 

Marv,

I was thinking of something less sophisticated than a database interface.

I only mentioned it because it is a feature that already exists.
I have to admit that I haven't explored the groups.io database feature adequately. I spent many years building RDBMSs and applications on top of them.

There's no "R" about it, only simple unrelated tables. Nothing fancy, but the fields (columns) can be assigned different data types, which helps guide the user in filling them out with the correct type of information.
Shal


Marv Waschke
 

Shal--
I was thinking of something less sophisticated than a database interface. The output would be a text document that could be sent as an email. That certainly could be done with a database behind it, which would be searchable and you could design and generate reports, but I was only thinking about a configurable template for prompting users to produce emails in which data is presented uniformly.

Off-hand, I am imagining an app with a moderator-mode for building templates, which would be something like the HTML editor on the groups.io site that I am typing into right now, but set up to drag and drop a few simple widgets, like labels, limited length text boxes, and drop-downs.  The user-mode would display the template and the user gets to fill in the blanks. Hitting the send button transmits an email to groups.io for distribution. It could be either browser-based or an app. Nothing fancy and pretty much old-school. (Except for the AI piece scanning existing group email and automatically generating suggested templates. Kidding!) I suppose it might be useful to have a class of subscribers limited to templated emails.

I have to admit that I haven't explored the groups.io database feature adequately. I spent many years building RDBMSs and applications on top of them. Now, out of sheer laziness, I tend to shy away from anything that suggests an RDBMS. Not really a good thing...
Best, Marv


 

Marv,

An elementary "fill in-the-blanks form" feature in groups.io could be
useful in many ways.
Sounds like you're describing the Add Row screen in a Database table.

Using a database table to define the template signature would have its merits, in terms of giving the moderator tools to define the data type for each field.

The table itself would also provide the group owner with a central place to view and edit all of the member's signatures, without having to go to each member's page individually.

Sounds like that other idea floating around: application forms for restricted groups.

If I were building it, I would probably take a browser or app approach
rather than try to mangle it into a email client.
The member updates his/her sig via the Subscription page in each group. So filling in the form would naturally be a web interface, not something done by email. If the group owner chose this option, the form fields would replace the single text box now provided for editing your signature.

Shal


Marv Waschke
 

An elementary "fill in-the-blanks form" feature in groups.io could be useful in many ways. I could see it used as J_Catlady describes -- whenever a group has repeated transfers of information that would benefit from a uniform information set and layout.

There would be challenges. If I were building it, I would probably take a browser or app approach rather than try to mangle it into a email client. And I am not sure what priority I would assign to it, but it certainly is an intriguing possibility.
Marv


Jeremy H
 

Being able to specify 'user profile link' in a template signature would be useful.

More generally, I am in favour of both being able to set a signature size limit, and to have, and optionally require use of, signature and message templates.

Jeremy


 

Maybe the "date of last update" could be filled in automatically by the system?
--
J

 

Messages are the sole opinion of the author, especially the fishy ones.

I wish I could shut up, but I can't, and I won't. - Desmond Tutu


 

p.s. I don't know why the spacing came out funny on that. I didn't intend the weird line spacing...
--
J

 

Messages are the sole opinion of the author, especially the fishy ones.

I wish I could shut up, but I can't, and I won't. - Desmond Tutu


 

Mark,

That would be fantastic! It would probably be something like this, just off the top of my head:

Cat’s name, age gender, and last known weight:

Diagnosis or suspected diagnosis:

Diagnosis method and date:

Current medications, with dosages in mg:

Other medical conditions:

Other pets in the house:
Misc (keep it short!)
Date of this signature update:

Would something like that work? Would we be able to limit the number of characters for each item?

--
J

 

Messages are the sole opinion of the author, especially the fishy ones.

I wish I could shut up, but I can't, and I won't. - Desmond Tutu


 

J,

On Sun, Jul 29, 2018 at 09:28 AM, J_Catlady wrote:

I’ve got many group members writing novels for their signatures., and it’s too hard to police and control them all by hand. I am now begging for a character limit option in the auto sig!

What about being able to specify a template for signatures (and for messages, for that matter)? Perhaps something as simple as some text that is pre-populated in the Signature text area? Would that help?

Thanks, Mark


Jim Higgins
 

Received from J_Catlady at 7/31/2018 01:16 AM UTC:

On Mon, Jul 30, 2018 at 06:03 PM, Jim Higgins wrote:
I wasn't logged in, but one click and 3 seconds and the profile info was on my screen. You don't need to log in if you don't explicitly log out.

I don't get what you mean here. If you mean you were logged into the site already because you had not logged out, then you WERE logged in. Right?

No. My browser wasn't running; I wasn't logged in.


Yes, groups.io keeps you logged in for a month.

Yes and no. You don't remain logged in. A cookie on your computer contains the credentials you need in order for Gio to log you in without the need for you to MANUALLY enter any UserId or Password information.


My point is that many of our group members don't log in at all, ever.

Then - unless that hurdle can be somehow leapt, the idea of putting info in a profile and a link to that profile in messages sent by that person won't work.

It seems to me as an Owner that at some point group members need to do something to help others better help them... whether it's to shorten their signatures to contain only the required basic info... or something else aimed at achieving some sort of more cooperative symbiosis. "When in Rome" and all that...

Jim H


 

Bottom line, I would like a character-limit option on the auto-sig!

Sure, makes sense and probably isn´t such a big tech deal.

Victoria


 

On Tue, Jul 31, 2018 at 01:42 AM, Victoria wrote:
If a signature example is integrated into a recurring cal message,
I don't do recurring calendar messages. :-) The instructions for the signature are included in the monthly guidelines, along with all the other kinds of guidelines that get breached.

Our cats also require changes in meds, but I don't see that it's any harder to update the profile than the sig. But that's moot because of all the other problems with doing this via profiles that have already been pointed out.

Bottom line, I would like a character-limit option on the auto-sig!
 
--
J

 

Messages are the sole opinion of the author, especially the fishy ones.

I wish I could shut up, but I can't, and I won't. - Desmond Tutu


 

J,

 

the type of hormonal disease we are dealing with calls for regular lab testing and medicine dosage adapting which consequently means signature updates. Therefore the interesting idea of integrating signature into their profile probably wouldn´t work with our members since their signatures may require frequent updating.

 

In my groups cases of “novel writing” in signatures are quite limited but they do occur. Our bigger issue is to get members to compose a meaningful signature at all. So we remind in a regular calender message which information is needed. Our members generally comply…

 

If a signature example is integrated into a recurring cal message, could this push your “novel writers” into the right direction?

 

Victoria


 

Shal,

An interesting thought, but unfortunately correct on all counts. ;)
--
J

 

Messages are the sole opinion of the author, especially the fishy ones.

I wish I could shut up, but I can't, and I won't. - Desmond Tutu


 

J,

The problem is that it would not be available to people responding
only via email, ...
It would, if the member made the profile public. But that introduces potential privacy issues depending on what type of information you need to have there.

And it doesn't solve your original length problem, or the update problem Jim mentioned.

Shal


 

On Mon, Jul 30, 2018 at 06:03 PM, Jim Higgins wrote:

I wasn't logged in, but one click and 3 seconds and the profile info was on my screen. You don't need to log in if you don't explicitly log out.
I don't get what you mean here. If you mean you were logged into the site already because you had not logged out, then you WERE logged in. Right? Yes, groups.io keeps you logged in for a month. My point is that many of our group members don't log in at all, ever.

if a member gets a new cat and updates the profile, old messages will contain a link to the new cat info
That's actually a great point.

--
J

 

Messages are the sole opinion of the author, especially the fishy ones.

I wish I could shut up, but I can't, and I won't. - Desmond Tutu


Jim Higgins
 

Received from J_Catlady at 7/30/2018 08:08 PM UTC:

That worked fine, but it's because I'm logged in to <http://groups.io>groups.io. It would not display for members who aren't logged in.

I wasn't logged in, but one click and 3 seconds and the profile info was on my screen. You don't need to log in if you don't explicitly log out. Just close the browser when done. Except there's some sort of monthly log in requirement that I didn't pay much attention to last time it was required. Seems like it may have suggested I might have to log in monthly.

One potential drawback to info in profile... if a member gets a new cat and updates the profile, old messages will contain a link to the new cat info because the profile link won't change, potentially making medical advice in those old messages appear to be wrong or incompetent... or even worse, be perceived as correct when the changed profile has probably made it no longer correct.

Jim H


 

On Mon, Jul 30, 2018 at 01:43 PM, Chris Jones wrote:
it might be worth specifying what "numerical value" of limit you would need....could you be certain that this limit would be sufficient?
Haven't thought this and it's not really relevant to my request. The idea is it to be an optional group setting, similar to photo size and other size limits, and it would of course be modifiable if necessary.
 
--
J

 

Messages are the sole opinion of the author, especially the fishy ones.

I wish I could shut up, but I can't, and I won't. - Desmond Tutu


 

You're making a lot of great points. BTW, at one point I tried to use our "Cats" database for the info and was asking members to include a link to their cat's row in the database in their signatures. It failed miserably, for many reasons...
--
J

 

Messages are the sole opinion of the author, especially the fishy ones.

I wish I could shut up, but I can't, and I won't. - Desmond Tutu


Randy Thomson
 

Point taken on login. I do everything by email (except for rare moderation of my own small closed group), but I do stay logged in permanently. Others don’t, but could if they needed to access the information.

 

I believe you earlier said you had a template for folks to provide the basic client info up front, followed by a narrative section which can (and often does) ramble, rather than providing succinct information. My suspicion is that you are pushing a rope on that one, and that ramblers will ramble to the limit and stop rather than editing for succinctness, so you won’t get much more information from a limited 200 word description than you would from reading the first 200 words of a longer description. But, that’s just my take on human nature.

 

The advantage of putting it in the profile is that it doesn’t get compounded in replies, as signatures do.

 

But, Mark would need to create an easy way to add the profile link to the signature. Copy/paste from an in-group link is beyond a lot of folks. I’m married to one (who is very smart in non-technical fields), and probably one or two of my group of about 20 could do it with step by step instructions.

 

I can see where a lot of folks might want to include a link to their profile in their signature for general interest, so it’s not particularly an issue of narrow interest. So, I’ll strip this out as a separate Beta group request.

 

RandyT

 

From: main@beta.groups.io <main@beta.groups.io> On Behalf Of J_Catlady
Sent: Monday, July 30, 2018 3:00 PM
To: main@beta.groups.io
Subject: Re: [beta] Repeating request for character limit in auto signature

 

True, but the person would have to be logged in to access the link, and the people who use exclusively email for the group are usually not logged in. But you're still making a pretty good case. I'll think about it for my group. Would still have to solve the length issue, though. Your idea is more or less separate from that.

 

--
J

 

Messages are the sole opinion of the author, especially the fishy ones.

I wish I could shut up, but I can't, and I won't. - Desmond Tutu


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Randy's Profile