Backlog Drafts

A suggestion that is on the todo list, but not yet being worked on

Mike $

Well-known member
Aug 31, 2020
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Planet Earth
Can there be a way to save drafts indefinitely (or maybe there is already), that can be edited and posted as necessary? I just spent about 15 minutes writing a post only to realize that it would have been way over the head of someone posting in the uke beginners forum, but I would like to save that post to use whenever necessary, and for more than 72 hours. Some place on this site only the author has access to.
Hmmm. That's a good question. As a possible workaround, I would think you could send yourself a PM with that content, then when ready, copy and paste into a new thread or reply? Just a thought, and definitely not what you're asking for.

ETA: haha! Nope! Can't send yourself a PM.

We'll see what @TimWilson comes up with.
Over at the site run by the developers of our forum software, whose only members are sysadmins using this very forum software, the number one request for years and years has been for a proper draft system.

They use an upvote/downvote system, which we have built into our suggestions forum as well, and the drafts request has more upvotes than many of the other suggestions combined.

And yet, the official response is... Deferred. They're not saying no, but they're also not saying yes, and they're not giving a date. This is extremely frustrating to say the least, not just to me, as somebody who would absolutely adore this feature, but for all the others his admins as well.

(Even though it is merely symbolic, Mike, I have in fact added my upvote of sympathy with you. 🙂)

There are an awful lot of other missing or underdeveloped features in our forum platform that have thankfully been supplied through the efforts of third-party developers, many of whom are doing this out of the goodness of their hearts, or for a ridiculously small amount of money. Alas, none of them has cracked this particular nut. There are no third-party options that I have found for a proper drafts system.

Me, the way I would do it, would be to attach it to your member profile page, but as you say @Mike Dollarsign visible only to me. I would have easily dozen of these underway at any time.

In fact I probably DO have very nearly that many underway at any time, but because I have so many tabs opening and closing all the time, I forget about more of them and what thread they might be on, than I could ever remember! Which is why the one thing I would NOT do is tie drafts to threads. I would put the responsibility on myself to note the thread location in my draft rather than trying to force myself to remember the other way around.

I should also mention that I have been working with a variety of forum platforms going back to CompuServe in 1988, and I've never found any of them to have a reliable draft system.

I had actually hoped for this from a WordPress-based forum, which is what we had at the last forum that I managed, because WordPress blogs have a terrific draft system for their blogs, and their forums are basically just mini blogs in a linked wrapper... but no! No draft system in their forums whatsoever. Huge disappointment... which is saying a lot, because I found almost everything about WordPress forums disappointing. :ROFLMAO:

So I'll tell you what I'm doing now. It's sad, but it works: Word documents. I've got a folder of them in my UU folder.

The rest of the stuff there is pretty much what you'd expect. Pictures, screen captures, to-do lists and various doodads either from the site, or that I hope will make it to the site someday or another in some form or another...

... but I still dream of a day when either or some enterprising third party developer within that address system builds the thing that we really need. I ain't holding my breath anymore though. 🙂

I'll end where I began, by mentioning again that this is far and away the number one request from the community of sysadmins to our host development team. The lot of us will do what we can to keep the heat on, and I will use this reminder as an impetus to go back there make a little bit more noise in hopes of moving the ball forward. I wish I had better news for you, but in this case I just don't. 😞

I will share a tip though! Sometimes you can start on a draft, click away, and when you come back, it looks like the draft is gone. If it's within that 72 hours though, it really isn't! Just hit reload, and boop! It's back! That part of our system was in fact supplied via a third party add-on, and I'm very grateful for it.

By the way, I can extend it beyond 72 hours if you think it's worthwhile. The default was 24, and that was absolutely ridiculous. I tried 48 for a while, and that still felt too short. I'm okay with 72, and wouldn't mind extending it further, but it doesn't change the fundamental problem that you raised.

Again, I absolutely agree with you, which is why I'm so familiar with the current level of impediment. 🙂

Thanks for that detailed response Tim. If I didn't know better, I would think you had a draft of this post ready to go. I'm not holding my breath either, I just thought it might be a good idea.

I don't think extending will help, I would also forget which thread I were storing it in. I know it's not the same, but on hotmail, they have a draft repository that lasts indefinitely...or until I use it, I guess.

I used to keep a text document to keep repeatable posts, hardly ever thought to use it when I should have.

Thanks again.
If I didn't know better, I would think you had a draft of this post ready to go.

I might have, but in this case, I didn't! I dictated it while I was making some roast asparagus for lunch. (Super simple: toss fresh spears with olive oil and minced garlic, but don't add coarse sea salt until AFTER roasting for 10 min at 425 to retain moisture.) I feel strongly enough about it, and think about it often enough, that it was all at the tip of my tongue. :p
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