Forum Hacks

The combination of phpBB and letting users add non-text crap to a page has created some of the most breathtakingly ugly, MySpace-like websites ever created.

I don’t like avatars, signatures or gratuitous images on forums. And I don’t like the garish, clashing, head-ache inducing colors and fonts either. I wish they were opt-in, instead of opt-out. I mean, who would voluntarily check the “flood my page with visual distractions” check box?

Coping with Signatures, Smileys and Avatars
Google Chrome adblock add on allows you to right click a element, any element, then move a slider until all the offending items disappear. This is very handy for making the signatures go away because they are in a div with a class of “signature” Getting rid of signature divs also removes the almost funny joke that you have now read 30,000 times because it’s at the bottom of every frickin’ post.

You can also use this technique to get rid of the avatars and smileys, which often have a predictable image server.

Bookmarklets have the disadvantage of needing to be run once per page.

TODO: Learn how to fix a website’s style sheet without a bookmarklet.

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