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New JOIN NAG. COMMENTS forwarding improvement. MAP improvement.
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 Andrew Bedno
 
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Through much of 2000 ChicagoFun had a cookie based pop-up join nag. This would launch a small browser window on every visit to the home page unless you were a member. This was removed when the site went .org to be more low key.
A greatly improved join nag has now been re-added. This new nag appears only every seventh time a particular user visits a page, but works across the entire ChicagoFun domain. The new nag uses a small and fast pop-up "confirm" dialog box, rather than launching a new browser window. Click OK to join (or to confirm for existing members), which sets THE cookie to stop the nag from appearing. Or click CANCEL to simply keep browsing. Also, the join page has been maximally simplified for fastest load. On the back end; the join, disjoin, mass mailer and list admin programs have been improved, including the elimination of some rare problems with possible address duplication and update deadlocking.
Also, the NOTES/COMMENTS system has been improved for better cross-browser compatibility. The NOTES feature implements short, friendly URLs for ease of use, which forward to the appropriate forum topic/thread which may have a much more complex URL. In the first version this forwarding used a "Location:" tag to redirect browsers. This was determined to simply give a blank page for some AOL users. Location tags were then changed system-wide to instead use a "Refresh" tag, also known as a client pull. This however added a several second delay. To eliminate this delay at least in NOTES redirection, the notes program was modified to execute the forum main program directly after URL translation. Notes/comment links now immediately display the selected content with no forwarding at all.
Finally, some events do not create good links to maps. If the place address does not contain a street (Grant Park for example), the map link would lead to a likely choice selector or would center on Chicago, rather than showing the correct location. The MAP system has been improved so that certain location names are automatically translated internally to an exact street location for the map link.

2001.09.19