Welcome to the new Habs Inside/Out

It’s our pleasure to welcome you to a totally-redesigned, more functional, even-more-reader friendly Habs Inside/Out. This new site was rebuilt from the ground up and has been designed to give many more features to the users. It’s easier to navigate, easier to personalize, and easier for you to become a part of the conversation. Read on for details about some of the new elements we’ve added, and please feel free to add comments to help us improve and fine-tune the site even more.

Registration: The main change is the ability to create your own profile on the site. It’s now easier to be you, and harder for others to pretend to be you. We’ll add features to the profile to make it more detailed and more interesting over the coming months. If you’re concerned about privacy, Habs Inside/Out will still allow you to comment without registering — we’re keen to make the discussions about hockey accessible to everyone. So registration is a bonus — you’re not obliged to sign up, but it can improve your experience.

Threaded commenting: We experimented with this last season but had software issues that forced us to take down the function. This version is more reliable, so comments can finally have a good conversational flow and less confusing debates.

Comment Karma: Registered users have the ability to rate others’ comments. This feature isn’t about flaming or attacking other users — the ratings are anonymous, and various limits prevent overzealous rating sprees. Instead, it lets you collectively weed out troll posts, spam comments and offensive material, and collectively praise a really insightful comment or valuable link or observation. Essentially, the Habs Inside/Out community has control over some of the content of the site.

Podcast player: The PuckCast posts will all feature a built-in flash-based player that allows you to listen to the puckcast directly on the page. We’re working on pop-out functionality so it won’t interrupt your journey through the rest of the site.

More social networking options: We’ve added icons for StumbleUpon, Reddit, Newsvine and Facebook to every post (in addition to DIgg and Del.icio.us). You can use these to link specific Habs Inside/Out stories through other sharing services you’re part of. We’ve also added an email to friend option.

Most commented posts: The sidebar now includes a listing of posts ordered by greatest comment activity, so you can quickly see which stories are getting the most attention.


Your suggestion here:
We’re committed to keeping this site the best of its breed, and your comments in the past have helped us create what you see now. We want to know what you think this site needs. Please add your suggestions and criticisms below. If you’ve found a site bug, please specify which browser you’re using, and whether you’re on a Mac or PC. The more details, the better.

There will be more features in the coming weeks and months — stay tuned.

Hope you enjoy it,

John

Senior Producer, Habs Inside/Out

 

74 Comments

  1. ukhab says:

    Ah, you can set how many comments you want to see per page. Very clever!

  2. habitual says:

    Glad that steps have been taken to weed out some of the unwelcome tone and comments that occasionally crept in!

    In addition to echoing Candianco’s comments about wanting a link to all the Habs stuff in the Gazette (I suspect the internet version does not contain all the articles) I would like to have Dave or one of the other writers provide in regular in -depth updates on our Hamilton prospects – once every couple of weeks, perhaps. One only hears about them by passing reference.

    Also, Dave wrote some really good stories in the off season about what past Habs have been doing (the Cournoyer article was great). How about more for off game days, and how about a story or two about days in the life of a season. Take us along with the team on road trips, capture the personalities of the players, what are their game superstitions, off ice hobbies, etc.

    Yeah, easy for me to say, but … you did ask.

    Tks

  3. kiwihabsfan says:

    Rather spiffy I reckon, got a bit of a shock when I first opened the webpage yesterday. It took my a while to work out the photo, but got it all sorted now.

  4. canadianco says:

    Great new look for the site. My suggestion is more about the content for the site… I’d like to see everything that is printed in the Gazette about the Habs posted to the blog! That means Red Fisher and Jack Todd’s articles and columns (including MMQB and The Red Line) along with any of the sundry briefs that are posted by Pat Hickey. I know that these can all be accessed through the link to the Sports section at the top of the screen, but trying to go back even one day in the archives can be a major pain. (Not to mention the fact that most of the article links on the Gazette’s site don’t include the byline). The full articles don’t even need to be posted to the blog, even a simple link would suffice.

    Thanks, and keep up the great work. Go Habs!

  5. nigel-ski says:

    My only issue is that I forgot my original log-on info, and having bought a new computer recently, had to change my name slightly ( adding a hyphen). Otherwise, an excellent upgrade to my go-to Habs information and commenting site. I’m looking forward to the advanced features as they arrive…

    Habs rule, Leafs drool…

  6. yehaken says:

    Excellent! So happy to see all these new features and registration in place.

    Would it be possible to add a chat room so that during games we can all comment? It’s a bit cumbersome just using a message board to respond, especially when there are 500+ posts going on during a game. I think it would be great to be able to (virtually) watch a game with knowledgeable fans and boorish peers alike (and it would take care of a lot of “Ugghhhh…” or “Yay!” postings).

    Anyhow, just a thought.

  7. FastRonnie says:

    Nice job guys!
    I like the new look. Easy on the eyes and use-friendly – personally, I like the blue background scheme. Looking forward to continued success on the site. Thanks for all you’re doing for Habs fans everywhere. It’s a great way to bring us together and discuss all things Canadiens.

    Patiently awaiting our next victory and ultimately the cup!

  8. ukhab says:

    I really like the redesign. I’ve been more of a lurker, reading all the articles every day but not posting much. I think this will encourage me to post more often!
    With having avatars and signatures, will the comments be paginated or just very long pages on popular articles?

  9. Moey says:

    Thanks for the info Zamboni, I downloaded ieSpell, now I have no excuse!!

  10. WindsorHab-10 says:

    As Borat would say: I LIKE.

  11. zamboni says:

    What’s up with kostitsyn.com
    why do we get js and ads linked to that domain?

  12. Dave Stubbs says:

    You can still download the PuckCast for listening on the move (for those without a really long extension cord for their desktops or laptops). Click on the PUCKCAST link atop the main page under the Habs Inside/Out banner; the PuckCasts are grouped here. Click on the link that allows you the traditional download.


    Dave Stubbs

    Habs Inside/Out
    Sports Feature Writer, Montreal Gazette

     

  13. zamboni says:

    I disagree with the mandatory preview.
    I’m all for pro choice.
    The disciplined amongst us will proof read with or without the preview button, whereas the ones who don’t care about it would just click and the follow immediately with post comments button.

    I think the button punishes the disciplined more than anything,
    If I’m used to proof reading prior to hitting any button (I’m not suggesting that I fall into that category) I’d be forced to read yet again before I can post….
    either way you get my jist, don’t force, give choice.

  14. von says:

    Right on, cool to see the site continue to grow and improve. Thanks for the time and effort for making this the best site on the net for the Habs!!!

  15. zamboni says:

    Dru,
    You know what would be really cool?
    A way to see just the new posts, a filter perhaps :)
    One that can span across multiple threads would be even more cool.

    I know I know I’m asking too much, it’s just a wishful suggestion and not a demand.

  16. Naila Jinnah says:

    Just a note… (or two)
    I’d like to be able to post without previewing my comment. This would be especially useful for the game blog.

    Also, the validation email ended up in my spam folder. Maybe a warning that this might happen on the profile page?

    Thanks! :D

  17. zamboni says:

    Thanks for the clarification.
    Any chance to drop the mandatory preview and make it optional, it really gets in the way specially when posting to Mike’s blog during a live game.
    Either way, many thanks.

    Wow, as I was replying to this, I already saw the “Post Comment” button implemented.
    Awesome, and thank you.

  18. zamboni says:

    Moey

    If you use Firefox, Spell Check is built in.
    If you use internet explorer, google iespell (it’s a plug-in) and you’d have that functionality, and it would work with all sites, not just HIO.

  19. Naila Jinnah says:

    I LOVE LOVE LOVE the new look… I knew it was coming, but it was still a bit of a shock to load the new page. Still, it only took a few seconds for it to grow on me, which is a good thing ;)

    Looking forward to exploring all the new features!!

  20. Kevin says:

    The new site looks fantastic! I can’t believe Habsinsideout has only been up for about a year… I don’t know what I used to do before that!

  21. The Teacher says:

    Never mind guys..I need to read before I scroll early in the morning :)

  22. The Teacher says:

    Just wondering why most people seem to have (- 3) or (0) as their current score. And what does the score relate to?

    Thanks :)

  23. Moey says:

    Good job!!!! Is there any way to include a spell check feature? I’m too lazy to go to word for a spelling validation before I post. But I must admit, now it automatically forces you to preview before you post. It helps pick up most errors.

    • TradeRyder says:

      ____________________________________________________
      Good job on the site guys! Takes a little getting used to but seems to work great!

      Trade Ryder! Hope makes a good breakfast, but a bad supper!

  24. Dave Stubbs says:

    Click Boone under the Habs Inside/Out logo at the top middle of the page and you’re on Mike’s page. Might slow you down one keystroke, but saves scrolling.


    Dave Stubbs

    Habs Inside/Out
    Sports Feature Writer, Montreal Gazette

     

    • Dave Stubbs says:

      Same thing happened with me this morning, but I reloaded the page and all was fine.


      Dave Stubbs

      Habs Inside/Out
      Sports Feature Writer, Montreal Gazette

       

    • zamboni says:

      Is it only me or this morning this looks messed-up?
      It looks like the outlines that are supposed to go around each post is all stacked up on top, and then midway through the page the background changes to gray.

      I’m sure this is a temporary side-effect, just reporting what I see.

  25. JungleWolf says:

    Love the new look.
    One suggestion however: On the homepage, Boone’s e-mail section is too low on the right side. Seeing that this is an area of the site that is updated on near daily basis you should not have to scroll down when you visit the homepage in order to see if there is a new post from Mike.
    You could either shrink the User Login area which is using a lot of real estate or switch The Writers section with Boone’s.

    Just my opinion, not a criticism. Great site before, better now.

    • JDS says:

      Nice very Nice

      Now on to Toronto and let the boys clip those Leafs!

    • Chuck says:

      JDS, isn’t that photo fromm the game last year where Huet was shelled and pulled his groin? Maybe you should pick a photo with a happier memory behind it! :)

      ______________________________________________
      “Vote Saku for All-Star… or little Timmy gets it!!!”

  26. RetroMikey says:

    Looks like we’ll have to get used to this new look, but I’ll never post my picture!

  27. doug says:

    Thanks, guys. This place keeps getting better and better.

  28. Alex Leduc says:

    Nice job!

    I agree its a little too much blue, but thats all!

  29. Dru says:

    Hi,

    Thanks for the feedback. I’ve fixed #2 and #4. Hopefully people will not make a habit of leaving their html tags open.

    Karma could be better, but I think it’ll be interesting to see how it plays out. I think that this system has potential, but it needs a little while to settle in. Call it the Guillaume Latendresse of comment rating systems.

    The rest of your comments will be subject to future discussions and negotiations. :>

  30. Dru says:

    I’ll just say that there are plenty of new features coming, so stay tuned. :>

  31. Dru says:

    Hi,

    Kostitsyn.com is just a domain I registered to use as a temporary address to house the web site while it was in development. Don’t worry, HI/O has not been usurped by any Russian media barons or upstart Belarussian players!

  32. Dru says:

    Hi,

    We’ve run into a few issues, including a brief crash when untold thousands of habs fans all loaded HI/O at the same time immediately after the game, but things should get ironed out in the next few days.

  33. Naila Jinnah says:

    Once you confirm your account, just edit your profile and you’ll find a nice picture upload function ;)

    -Naila

  34. Dave Stubbs says:

    That chat room, per se, exists now. Have you visited Boone’s blog during games? Click on Boone beneath the banner atop this page and join the conversation.


    Dave Stubbs

    Habs Inside/Out
    Sports Feature Writer, Montreal Gazette

     

  35. Fagstein says:

    1. Have to agree about the colour scheme: very un-Habs-like
    2. The registration info email comes from “dru@dru.ca” instead of Habs Inside/Out, and doesn’t make it clear that you have to confirm your email address with the link given.
    3. Comment voting is good, but this karma method seems a bit complicated. A simpler thumbs-up/thumbs-down might be better.
    4. User registration, avatars, thread commenting are all yay.
    5. I’m not a fan of the “submit this page to social networking sites” links. They’re unnecessary and distracting.
    6. The layout/spacing on the main pages is a bit hard to follow. There’s a horizontal line, but the comments and tags are below that line, making it look like they belong to the next post.
    7. Don’t force comment preview. Most comments are short, and this is going to discourage them.

    In general, a functional improvement, with some small cosmetic kinks to iron out.

  36. JungleWolf says:

    Gotcha Dave, and I just noticed that upon signing in the User Login area is much smaller which is good.
    Assuming that the site “remembers” that you are logged in it should be just fine.
    Thanks again,
    Neil

  37. habs33 says:

    Looks great guys! I’m now a daily reader and must admit, quite sad when there are no new articles. Also a religious Puckcast listener, too. Keep up the great work and congrats on the new look.

    • zamboni says:

      First of all many thanks to the people who are putting this together.
      I think RSS feeds might be broken.
      The previous link hasn’t received new updates and the new link is rejected as a valid RSS feed by Outlook 2007 RSS client.

    • zamboni says:

      Dru,
      Any chance this could be looked at?
      I love the RSS feeds, but as it stands now, I can’t used it.

      One other thing, I think all posts that pre-date to the new and improved HIO have lost formatting all line breaks have disappeared and turned the posts into a large illegible blobs, it would be a pity to lose HIO’s first year of posts to that.
      Just my two cents.

  38. Dave Stubbs says:

    Aw, c’mon Moey – a spell-check feature?! Next thing you’ll want us to write your posts, too! (And you know I’m just pulling your leg.) Half the fun here is reading the typos…


    Dave Stubbs

    Habs Inside/Out
    Sports Feature Writer, Montreal Gazette

     

  39. Moey says:

    Dave,

    I just couldn’t resist asking. But seriously, the mandatory preview post feature is a great help.

    • mjames says:

      My earlier post on formatting issues seems to be on Boone’s blog. I don’t see the problem on some of the other threads. My O/S is Windows XP Professional.

      mjames

  40. STOB says:

    Just one question, why is the background to this site Maple Leafs blue?!?!?!

  41. N.B. habs fan 50 yrs says:

    Dave,you said you reloaded the page Iam new at this so could you tell me where to reload,thanks.

  42. InGy says:

    Site looks great! Nice work!!

  43. zamboni says:

    You’re welcome.

    If you want to have the true Habs colors, try this


    @-moz-document domain("habsinsideout.com"),domain("kostitsyn.com") {
    body {background-image: none !important; background-color: #AD0000 !important;}
    #sidebar .block {background-image: none !important; background-color: #0C2360 !important; border: 1px solid !important;}
    #sidebar .block .content {background-image: none !important; background-color: #0C2360 !important;}
    }

    And the following gets rid of the “Social Networking” toolbox

    @-moz-document domain("habsinsideout.com"), domain("kostitsyn.com") {
    #sn_toolbox img {display: none !important;}
    }

    There’s a lot more that can be done, the sky is the limit
    like striping out everything else that gets in your way and just leaving what matters.

  44. Chuck says:

    Strange… sometimes my photo is being clipped at the bottom (it’s being turned into a square instead of an 80 x 100 pixel rectangle) and other times not. I noticed the same thing happening to Dave’s photo.

    ______________________________________________
    “Vote Saku for All-Star… or little Timmy gets it!!!”

  45. Kenny says:

    A great site made even better!

  46. joel says:

    thanks … so far it looks great and is working well.. like all new things in this technology, hope there are not too many bugs !!!

  47. zamboni says:

    If the blue really gets on your nerves, and if you are using FireFox
    download Stylish extension and add this as a style.

    @-moz-document domain("habsinsideout.com") {
    body {background-color: #BF0000 !important; background-image: none !important;}
    }

  48. yqxnfld says:

    Kudos to all involved in the redesign. A suggestion: how about a “user’s forum” where registered users could post items related to the Hab fan community? Specifically, there could be a forum where fans could arrange local meet-ups to watch games. Thoughts?

  49. Habfan-Leafhater says:

    One thing I liked about the old site that this site doesn’t have is the post #. I know it seems weird but i’m kinda lost without it.

  50. Habfan-Leafhater says:

    Love the site guys, thanks.

  51. kevin m says:

    The site is looking better every minute.

    Still getting used to it but very nicely done. Congrats

    I like it!

  52. Naila Jinnah says:

    I concur, but I figure it’ll be up and running in a few days…

  53. ip says:

    Hi guys, Great new design but the RSS feeds aren’t working properly. The Main one seems to be a few days behind. Any chance of fixing it?

    Thanks!

  54. Naila Jinnah says:

    FYI: It took 3 refreshes for my page to turn out right…

  55. Dru says:

    Internet Explorer compatibility is, unfortunately, a constant source of headaches and fun surprises. I’ll look into this as soon as I can.

  56. mjames says:

    Excellent job. The only comment I would make relates to the formatting of the poster’s comments. The last word on each line of the Comment is partially hidden by the blue column on the right.

    I am using a Dell PC and Explorer 7.0.5730.11

    Thanks

    mjames

  57. moeman says:

    Great news for us diehard Habs I/O readers.

  58. longbow says:

    Wow.This is great.I really like the way it’s set up.You got me interested again.

  59. OldGrover says:

    This is great – exactly what we needed. Nice to be able to know that the familiar faces ARE those people

  60. sam says:

    absolutely excellent job, indeed.
    thanks for doing this, guys. the site was an essential daily read; you’re definitely moved it in the right direction once again :)

  61. zamboni says:

    Ian, check my answer here.

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