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Q&A Board: Nested comments to clarify questions and comment on answers

edited February 2012 in Vanilla 2.0 - 2.8

Our goal is to build a community around a Question & Answer board. We've been looking at the few open source Q&A solutions available, such as osqa, askbot and question2answer, but they aren't suitable for various reasons. We believe that vanilla forum is the best choice. Now however we are facing one major issue, vanilla forum does not natively support a nested comment structure (1 additional level, similar to the stackexchange sites would suffice). For a Q&A Forum of the size we have in mind it is crucial to be able to sort the answers with respect to the number of votes received, which does not make sense without the ability to clarify questions and comment on specific answers.

So our question is, whether it is feasible to implement a comment on questions/answers solution.


  • I think it's feasible... add some quote or reply button, some extra db column to store which other comment a comment is replying to, some custome view to render the discussion in such order, some event hook to override the $sender->view, etc.

    It's a feature that I'd like to have too.

    But I'm occupied for now, else I'll code it for free.

  • 422422 Developer MVP

    Look at our stackoverflow skin for vanilla, obviously doesnt help your thread structure. But shows what can be done with vanilla.

    There was an error rendering this rich post.

  • x00x00 MVP
    edited February 2012

    There is this plugin:

    and also when vanilla 2 first came out they used to have a comment replies.

    They were different than comments. Personally I would go for a solution like that becuase nested comment look,ugly, produce multiple endpoints, mess with the order, which breaks a bunch of plugins like voting.

    Comment replies you keep the order of the comments. You check which comments have replies, then you get those comment replies from a separate table, then append them to comments.

    Much like stackoverflow/youtube, you can limit them, to one or two levels. Keep them plain formatted, etc.

    it would need plugin development.

    grep is your friend.

  • Interesting topic.. I think this would be a great addition too. However, with the plugin above there is in principle no distinction between normal replies and comments. Also it is not possible to sort by voting and to use the plugin simultaneously..

    Since I am new to vanilla and also interested in this thing, how would one implement such a function? Is it possible to do it using the plugin framework since in principle one would need to define a new model for such 2nd-level comments.

  • x00x00 MVP
    edited February 2012

    I'm happy to do this for you if any of you would like to whip round to sponsor the project.

    grep is your friend.

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