A Better Notifications Hack for Quora
"I have a few spare minutes, grab my phone, and see 1,075 notifications"
I have been really frustrated with the default Quora notifications page. Hundreds of new notifications everyday, lots of them are redundant (i.e. the same question added to several topics i follow or x number of people added an answer to a question i follow).
I have decided that this has to end, i want to better view my notifications. This extension is a simple one. It can identify several actions in the notifications feed :
- new question added to a topic you follow
- replies to a some action you posted
- comments on one of your posts
- comments on one of your answers
- suggested edit to question
- asked you to answer a question
- mentioned you in a post
- wrote an answer for a question you follow
- promoted a question you asked
- you have a new follower to one fo your blogs
- you have a new follower to one of your questions
- you have a new user following you
- voted up an answer for you on some question
- thanked you for an answer or contribution
- Tweeted about some of your content
- Suggested to edit your bio
After Catching these notifications, i have hacked the sidebar and presented these as filters with a counter for the new ones. But doing only that is not enough for me at this point, i wanted to do some kind of clustering for some of the notification types.
At the current version of the extension i only cluster two types of notifications:
New Answer Notification: Instead of having multiple entries for answers added to a question i follow, they are now clustered like User(X) and (N) others posted an answer to question you follow.
New Questions added to a Topic: It happens very often that a single question is added to multiple categories, they are now clustered like Question(X) has been added to (N) Topics : (Topic1, Topic2 ... TopicN)
I am planning to finish clustering for all the other actions. For example, the upVoting notification will be clustered in a similar fashion to Twitter's notification: User(X) and (N) others voted up your answer ...
If you are following lots of topics, you might be interested at some point to browse only a certain topic. For that, there is a dropdown list in the top that contains a list of all the topics (fine-grained list i.e. if there is a context found in a certain topic, the context is presented) discovered in the feed.
- Quora implements an infinite scroll mechanism to fetch new notifications. I had problems trying to catch when an infinite call is done as it is not done via a normal AJAX request as i could not intercept that by assigning a hook on the ajax.success() or ajax.complete() on the document. So at the moment, there is function that runs on intervals of 5 seconds that will check for new notifications fetched by Quora and then applies the clustering and cleaning.
- This is a very early prototype that was during a weekend, so please try it out and i will appreciate any feedback
- Improvements and future requests are welcomed as well
Discussions about the issue
- Improving Quora Notifications (http://www.quora.com/Improving-Quora-Notifications)
- Can Quora let me filter out board notifications from all the other ones? (http://www.quora.com/Notifications-on-Quora/Can-Quora-let-me-filter-out-board-notifications-from-all-the-other-ones)
- Notifications on Quora (http://www.quora.com/Notifications-on-Quora)
- How could Quora improve notifications ? (http://www.quora.com/Notifications-on-Quora/How-could-Quora-improve-notifications?share=1)
***** Updates *******
- Adapted the new Quora CSS styling:
+ Fixed the toolbar position and fixed its z-index
+ Added the notifications panel back on the right hand side
+ Fixed the cluster and mark-as-read notifications
- Various CSS overrides and improvements
- Fixed CryptoJs dependency, solving filters not appearing in some instances
- Fixed notifications tooltip to appear on top of the fixed header
- Added Fixed header for clean notifications header and filters
- Added mark as read icon next to unread notifications
- The ability to mark single notifications as read
- Fixed Questions Clustering bug that caused contextual questions to not display cluster information
- Fixed Anonymous users answers on clusters
- Improved performance by not parsing already checked elements
- Improved cluster notification
- Various overall performance and visual improvements
- Fixed Performance issues caused by running QBN on 5 seconds intervals to catch new loaded notifications
- Catching new Quora notifications by intercepting Ajax calls increasing overall performance
- Fixing bug in populating topics filtering (duplicate entries)
- Improved extension so that it runs automatically on notification page without clicking on the extension icon
- Lots of other minor fixes and overall code optimizations
- Minor Bug Fixes