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Old 02-01-2014, 05:07 PM   #1
Kaitou1412
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THE NEW CHYOO (with link)! Also, what features should be part of an updated CHYOO?

The new CHYOO is finally up. The off-site update is hosted here:

www.chyoa.com

Old usernames still work. Old stories remain standing.

Though it's no longer necessary, the old CHYOO2 remains standing. Anyone still be using it is encouraged to join us at the new site. Those who choose to remain, please be advised CHYOO2 is only semi-functioning and must follow the methods of overcoming CHYOO2 errors.

As the second part of the title asks, what belongs in a good CHYOO? What is already there and perfect as is? What needs some fine tuning? What does it lack? Do you disagree with your fellow posters? Please post this here, and hope either Manu or the dream team currently at work can make the ideal CHYOO.

I'll get us started.

New or improved features.

1.) Cookies; so that we can stay logged in for more than 15-20 minutes.

2.) A change password feature; so that anyone who loses their password isn't at the mercy of an automated one.

3.) A removal of the four thread cap; one that doesn't require a link work around.

4.) Contact via email should be optional and come with a subject.

5.) A Private Messaging system on site; so the spam filter doesn't hit the contacts from CHYOO, or in case someone doesn't want to give access to their email address.

6.) A ratings system without any programming problems.

7.) On that note, the ability to have the owners or moderators remove malicious feedback and ratings.

8.) Email verification; so that one email address translates to only one account.

9.) An instant log out for banished users; so the banishment is upheld instantly.

10.) A blocked list that can't be hacked; so that the editors word is maintained.

11.) Banishment should have a less than permanent option; so users can be punished and locked out, but lesser offenses don't lose hope entirely.

Features that should be left alone:

1.) The story map; so readers can get back into the story right where they stopped before.

2.) An unlimited number of stories per username.

3.) The ability to transfer stories from user to another.

4.) The ability for a contributor to edit its own work.

5.) Trusted status should continue.

6.) Moderators; self-explanatory.

Things that should be removed:

1.) Auto-approve and auto-promote; too easily exploited.
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Old 02-01-2014, 06:39 PM   #2
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It would be cool for authors to have the option to have a story set to 'private'; basic idea is that if a person wants, they can ban other authors from adding to their story except for those particularly chosen. They could have the option of adding people to a 'trusted authors' list, which allows threads to be automatically approved. As a safeguard, I would also create a timer for stories that are set to 'private'. Once a set amount of time has passed, it'll become 'public' unless manually switched back to 'private'. That way, active authors and stories can be adequately moderated by their creator, and remain private at their prerogative - but if the creator just ups and vanishes, their creations won't simply vanish into the abyss and be open for anyone (eventually, at least).

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Old 02-01-2014, 08:03 PM   #3
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The main thing I've always wanted from CHYOO has been the ability to see a list of all newly added chapters (rather than having to poke around in the story maps of the newly-added-to stories looking for what's new).
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Old 02-02-2014, 01:58 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chouken View Post
It would be cool for authors to have the option to have a story set to 'private'; basic idea is that if a person wants, they can ban other authors from adding to their story except for those particularly chosen. They could have the option of adding people to a 'trusted authors' list, which allows threads to be automatically approved.
That's actually a pretty good idea. A halfway point between closed and opened, allowing a project between specific users to continue until they feel the project is either complete or ready for the masses. I like it.

This also reminds me of one thing that should be removed: the fifth thread trick, but only if the thread cap is removed first. If any number of child threads can be added, then the trick is no longer necessary, and instead becomes a means of allowing a story to continue beyond a closing thread, adding to pending threads, and adding to a closed story.

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Originally Posted by catfish27 View Post
The main thing I've always wanted from CHYOO has been the ability to see a list of all newly added chapters (rather than having to poke around in the story maps of the newly-added-to stories looking for what's new).
CHYOO already has that to an extent: advanced search. It's not a ready list, but it can list threads in order of last updated. I'm not sure if another list would really be necessary.

However, on the search, it should work like an internet search; it only looks for the words of the search in that specific order if first locked within quotation marks. If not locked in, it should be a search of any order and with anything possible written between them.

So, now that I've added my two cents on the points from Chouken and catfish27, does anyone have anything to say on my thoughts, be it these updates, the critiques, or my original points? I'd feel like an ass if I'm the only one who's looking to solidify everyone's thoughts and come to a consensus.
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Old 02-02-2014, 02:22 AM   #5
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These are good points. In part, the current CHYOO lacks of basic functions, such as long-term sign-ins or password change, but you already mentioned that above.

A relevance search (with an index) is a good idea, since the current search doesn't look for the frequency of occurrences.

I would also suggest a feature that lets a reader enter more than one name for reasons of personalization at the beginning of a story. I saw this mentioned before in another thread.

Regarding No. 6: Are you in favor of ratings per thread or just ratings per story? And what do you think about comments per story/thread?

Edit:
It's also important to improve the overall reading experience (bigger text, serif, no fixed width). And at the same time the site should work for mobile devices, too (responsive design).

Last edited by Friedman : 02-02-2014 at 02:44 AM.
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Old 02-02-2014, 03:55 AM   #6
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Quote:
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I would also suggest a feature that lets a reader enter more than one name for reasons of personalization at the beginning of a story. I saw this mentioned before in another thread.
Indeed, increased variety to the immersive text feature would be useful. Even at present we can only pull off two names, leading to stories like School of Love - which uses both names for the interests - have nameless MCs.

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Originally Posted by Friedman View Post
Regarding No. 6: Are you in favor of ratings per thread or just ratings per story? And what do you think about comments per story/thread?
It should remain per thread, and not as a whole story. Since the stories are designed to grow and are ultimately still being written, reviewing the whole story is problematic, even before we address certain users' aversions to specific genres and fetishes that prevents them from reading the whole story. A thread, on the other hand, only changes in terms of spelling and grammar, as well as approval status. It's complete, making it significantly easier to review. Furthermore, if the ratings are only for stories, individual thoughts are lost, forcing everyone to be judged off the work of the others as well as their own work; meaning a good writer elevates a bad writer's status while the bad writer drags down the good writer's.

However, it occurs to me that an editor should be privileged to all reviews within its stories, or that feedback should be a public list with no option to conceal it. This way the editor is fully aware of the reviews and can grow as an editor. Besides, sometimes the reviews are meant for the editors.
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"Those who are skilled in combat do not become angered, those who are skilled at winning do not become afraid. Thus the wise win before they fight, while the ignorant fight to win." - Zhuge Liang
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Old 02-02-2014, 05:10 AM   #7
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I think it would be handy for me to have to access to ratings and feedback I have given, and to be able to edit those as well. For one thing, this would allow me to be able to find and fix those times when "Oh my god, I think I accidentally gave that thread a 1 instead of a 5". Also, since a writer or editor can edit a thread after I've rated it, it would be nice to be able to change my rating as well, since the thread may have changed drastically since I first rated it. With this, it would also be helpful for writers to be notified when their story is rated, or when a rating is changed. Similarly, it would handy for raters to know when a thread they rated has changed as well.
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Old 02-02-2014, 10:40 AM   #8
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We definitely need to fix up the story map in a couple ways:

1) Thread titles should not become basically vertical blocks after the storylines reach a certain length.

2) New threads should be outlined in a more prominent and eye catching way. The current method is almost impossible to see unless you look very slowly and carefully.

3) New threads should remain marked as new until YOU look at them. They should not reset just because you happened to log in since they were written (use of cookies needed here).

4) We need a better way to deal with long storylines than having the page infinitely scroll horizontally. One things we can do here is change the horizontal spacing; it doesn't need to be nearly so wide as it is currently. Spacing more like the tree view on Fiction Branches would be more appropriate and just as clear. Probably at some point we will need to indicate a carriage return on the storyline.
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Old 02-02-2014, 10:43 AM   #9
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Since this is a serious rewrite this time instead of just people throwing around ideas, could we get this thread stickied for reference?
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Old 02-02-2014, 11:55 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Murakami View Post
4) We need a better way to deal with long storylines than having the page infinitely scroll horizontally. One things we can do here is change the horizontal spacing; it doesn't need to be nearly so wide as it is currently. Spacing more like the tree view on Fiction Branches would be more appropriate and just as clear. Probably at some point we will need to indicate a carriage return on the storyline.
I looked into the Fiction Branches tree view. Seems good to me. Simple, and easy to create/maintain.

Is there a way to contact you via PM?
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Old 02-02-2014, 12:31 PM   #11
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Ignore this - actual post below

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Old 02-02-2014, 12:35 PM   #12
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Expanding the immersive text is a good idea. I think the author should be able to select how many immersive text fields are going to be used with the story and should be able to name the fields and provide default values for them. That way when someone starts a story they could see
Your First Name: _John_____
Your Family Name: _Doe_____
Your Sister's Name: _Jane_____
Sister's Cup Size: _B_____
etc.

The more fields authors add the more important default values are since it means readers don't have to guess at the desired format and don't need to fill in values they aren't as interested in. If the author wants a height in feet entered as five then the story will look strange if someone enters 4'7" or 140cm.

Probably a good idea to let the author add more fields after they've started the story, since I bet many authors will look back and say "I wish I had made that bit immersive" after a few weeks or months.

Instead of {FIRST_NAME} and {LAST_NAME} perhaps make the fields something like {VAR_1} . . . {VAR_12} . . . {VAR_X}. The site could map the old names to the first two variables.


Another thing I would suggest is that the continuation options at the bottom of the page should each have a select button next to them so that the reader can just click the button next to the option they want rather than click option button then click continue button. It's a small change but it would cut the number of clicks in half.

The ability to reply to comments about your threads (perhaps even if the comment writer is anonymous). I know there are cases where you want to respond to someone, thank them for their feedback or let them know some issue they found has been fixed.

The ability to see story editor's most recent posts or most recent login time. That way you can see if someone has been away for a few days or if they haven't logged in for months. That would give a better idea of when threads might get approved. This becomes even more important if you choose to get rid of auto-approve.
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Old 02-02-2014, 01:15 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Murakami View Post
Since this is a serious rewrite this time instead of just people throwing around ideas, could we get this thread stickied for reference?
Sorry, thought I did that already. Thread has now been stickied.

Indirect, I like your thoughts. Just a blanket agreement here. A set up for the immersive text similar to a mad lib with the guidelines made by the creator would be perfect.
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"How worthy is such a civilization at all which is built from deceptions?" - Nightmare

"Those who are skilled in combat do not become angered, those who are skilled at winning do not become afraid. Thus the wise win before they fight, while the ignorant fight to win." - Zhuge Liang
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Old 02-02-2014, 02:09 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Indirect View Post
Expanding the immersive text is a good idea. I think the author should be able to select how many immersive text fields are going to be used with the story and should be able to name the fields and provide default values for them. That way when someone starts a story they could see
Your First Name: _John_____
Your Family Name: _Doe_____
Your Sister's Name: _Jane_____
Sister's Cup Size: _B_____
etc.
I personally don't like the immerse text. Part of that has to do with the extensive blanks it leaves everywhere if you go in via tree view, but part of it is also that sometimes I just don't want to use it. At the very least, there should be a requirement for default values on everything.
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Old 02-02-2014, 02:10 PM   #15
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I looked into the Fiction Branches tree view. Seems good to me. Simple, and easy to create/maintain.

Is there a way to contact you via PM?
Can't you just click on my name to PM?
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Old 02-02-2014, 02:13 PM   #16
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Another thing I would suggest is that the continuation options at the bottom of the page should each have a select button next to them so that the reader can just click the button next to the option they want rather than click option button then click continue button. It's a small change but it would cut the number of clicks in half.
Was gong to suggest this. I personally think from a visual standpoint only Fiction Branches is my ideal setup. It has links you click instead of a select box, it is as wide as your monitor instead of fixed width, and it has the ability to set text and background color. Now the backend on that site isn't that great (no editing, bad navigation, etc), but interface wise it is nice.
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Old 02-02-2014, 02:21 PM   #17
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Can't you just click on my name to PM?
Unfortunately, no. It probably has something to do with your PM settings. Can you PM me (or change them)?
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Old 02-02-2014, 02:47 PM   #18
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Another small but important feature:
Allow editors to delete a thread in their story. With the author able to request a delete. Especially if it doesn't have any continuing threads from it. If it is a parent thread, then it gets trickier, either would be unable to delete until sub threads are all gone, or have it left blank. But I don't think it should wipe out all threads thereafter, people wouldn't appreciate losing so much work in one fell swoop of an editor's keystroke.

I'd like to contribute, but my knowledge is limited to crude html and the occasional bit of java. However, if you run into any abstract system logic or flow issues, I can help with that. Most of my computer engineering and science friends will do so quite regularly.
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Old 02-02-2014, 06:02 PM   #19
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Unfortunately, no. It probably has something to do with your PM settings. Can you PM me (or change them)?
Try it now.
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Old 02-02-2014, 06:10 PM   #20
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Probably a good idea to let the author add more fields after they've started the story, since I bet many authors will look back and say "I wish I had made that bit immersive" after a few weeks or months.
Agreed. But one problem with many variables is the clutter on the front page when the reader is asked to fill them all in. Would it be possible to get the reader to fill them in when they come up? There is no point asking the reader to fill in the sexy barista girl's name and cup size on the front page if they then follow a path in the story that doesn't have her in it.
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Old 02-02-2014, 07:38 PM   #21
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There is no point asking the reader to fill in the sexy barista girl's name and cup size on the front page if they then follow a path in the story that doesn't have her in it.
Back up even further: why does the barista get a name? Immersive text for non-MCs is more for main characters, characters who are prominent in all possible outcomes. Characters who only appear in specific storylines are better suited to a fixed name. I don't doubt that some users would lack this foresight, but ideally it should don on everyone at some point and the stories get a heavy edit.
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Old 02-02-2014, 10:58 PM   #22
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I think we need to worry about BASIC functionality before we start getting fancy. Right now we have no site. Let's get a site that at least does most of what the old one did and get everything transferred over. We can start getting all the spiffy new features to work once we have something functional and all the current stories have been rescued.

Speaking of, we need some way to get people back in control of their stories on the new site, since we have no access to the user database to match emails or anything. Any ideas?

Last edited by Murakami : 02-02-2014 at 11:00 PM.
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Old 02-03-2014, 05:03 PM   #23
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Hi guys, I was most disappointed to have just come across chyoo after it was already down.
I've wanted to try wtiting interactive sex stories for a few years, and had always meant to set up a site for it too.

One of the features I'd like is the ability to store variables so that rather than having a strict tree structure, the story branches could merge again before providing options later on dependent on what the reader had previously chosen. I remember reading nonerotic interactive books when I was younger and they almost always included something like this. My planned story revolved around the day to day life of the protagonist, and he was able to make choices say whether to take his wife or receptionist out for lunch. The main thread of the story wouldnt deviate much, but for example if you'd gone out with the receptionist, you lose the ability later to have a date with your wife. It shouldn't be hard to implement, but allows much more complex stories.

Having not used the site while it was working im not really sure of how the changeable names worked, but I do like the idea of being able to personalise the story. If as others have suggested there is a lot of customisation allowed it has to have defaults, and preferably should be an option to edit the info, rather than a screen always presented at the start. It would be nice to allow the reader to change names at any point, even perhaps after they've already come across a character.

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Old 02-03-2014, 05:43 PM   #24
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Speaking of, we need some way to get people back in control of their stories on the new site, since we have no access to the user database to match emails or anything. Any ideas?
I've contacted Laurel in this regard. Alternatively, we can also crawl the site and authors can then claim their accounts (at the registration, for example).
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Old 02-03-2014, 07:34 PM   #25
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I've contacted Laurel in this regard. Alternatively, we can also crawl the site and authors can then claim their accounts (at the registration, for example).
We would need to have some kind of control for this. The issue is people claiming other people's stories/accounts. Since we have no means of verification (unless we are able to get access to the old database), it is a concern, albeit probably not a major one.
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