Menu Bar Edit
The menu bar for the forums is below the words "Scratch Forums" and has the following options:
- Forums Home: This lets a user quickly get to the forum index.
- Profile: This lets a user change some settings for how they use the forums.
- Search: This lets a user search for any keyword or user in the forums, with multiple choices to narrow down the search.
Forum Categories Edit
There to be many forum categories. They are grouped as "Scratch", "Scratch in other languages", "Inspiration and more" and "Archived Forums".
The Scratch group as the following 9 forum categories:
- Announcements: "Watch here for the latest releases of Scratch, and other announcements." Only the Scratch Team can post topics here. Whenever there is a major update to the website, they will post about it for everyone to know - these updates can consist of new versions of Scratch, website changes, downtime, or a survey.
- New Scratch Members: "This is a forum to welcome new Scratchers to the community. Please post helpful information for new Scratch Members here." Created for new users, this is where to ask simple questions or greet new members.
- Show and tell: "Tell everyone about your projects and galleries." Filled with advertisements, this is where to advertise your projects and galleries, or check out other people's.
- FAQ: "Frequently Asked Questions" When a question is asked continuously for some time, a topic answering the question will be put in here.
- All About Scratch: "Questions about Scratch? No question is too basic!" This is where to ask normal questions about Scratch.
- Advanced Topics: "Talk about technical aspects or advanced features." As the description says, here you can talk about technical aspects or advanced features!
- Suggestions: "Ideas for the next version of Scratch or improvements to the Website? Post here." Most Scratchers have an idea they would like, and this is where to share it. Recently, Lightnin created a sticky linking to a page containing tips to making a helpful suggestion, due to the large number of silly suggestions.
- Troubleshooting: "Problems with Scratch? Think you've found a bug? Post here." Nothing is perfectly free from bugs, so a way to find them is neccessary. This is where to discuss problems, and possibly find a reason why it is occuring.
- Sensor Boards: "Topics relating to Scratch Boards, PicoBoards, and Scratch sensing and responding to things happening in the world around it." This forum is for discussing Sensor Boards and Picoboards, and almost anything involving them. This forum is rather inactive, due to the small amount of users who have a picoboard.
Note that normal users can not create new topics in Announcements and FAQ.
Scratch in other languages Edit
Because Scratch is used all around the world, there are forums for other languages. The languages are:
Note that messages in the wrong language may be deleted.
There are two other forums for other purposes:
- Translating Scratch: "Come here to discuss translation of the Scratch interface, website, and resources materials. Please discuss in English if possible, so we can better help you with translations." This is where to discuss the translations; for example, a mistaken translation should be pointed out here.
- Other languages: "Use this forum if your language is not yet listed. After a language gets certain support it will get upgraded to a forum of its own." If your language doesn't get your own forum, post here. If a language gets enough support, a forum is made for it.
Inspiration and More Edit
In "Inspiration and More", there are the following forums:
- Collaboration: "Join with others to collaborate on Scratch projects." This forum is generally used for talking about different organizations, collaborations, and companies Scratchers have made to make projects together.
- Requests: "Looking for something? Want to offer your skills to others? Post here." This forum is generally used for requesting art for games and the website, as well as programming help.
- Project Ideas: "A good place to get help thinking of ideas for projects." This forum is generally used for helping others and asking others for ideas on Scratch projects, as well as discussing projects that are currently being made.
- Miscellaneous: "Use this forum if you are not certain if the topic is directly related to Scratch." This forum is used for users to talk about non-Scratch related topics, such as video games, recent events, discussions/polls, and more.
Lastly, there are the archived forums. This section has forums that were once available, but closed.
- Inspiration and More: "This forum has been replaced by the forums in the "Inspiration and more" category above." This forum was spread out into more forums that are in the section "Inspiration and More".
- Scratch Day 2009: "Ask questions and share ideas about Scratch Day." This forum topic is used to talk about Scratch Day 2009 and what the people will be doing in different places.
- Scratch @ MIT Conference 2008: "Talk about the conference." This forum topic was used to talk about the Scratch Conference at MIT and what the people would do and show there. As this was long since over, this forum was closed.
- Text-based games: "Also known as Forum Games. This is an experimental category intended to contain this kind of threads to a particular section." This forum category was for text-based games. There is a new forum for them, which you can find here.
- Educators: "Discuss how you're using Scratch in education. Closed to new posts and moving to scratched.media.mit.edu" Here, educators (such as teachers and organizers from schools and organizations) can talk about Scratch, and how they use it in class, or for other uses and resources for teaching Scratch. This forum has been closed; a new website called ScratchED has been created for it.
While on the forums, users can also click "Profile" on the menubar to access options about viewing the forums. At the end of the list of each category, users can click "Submit" to save the changes they have made.
Within the Essentials category (which can be found on the left above "Personality"), there are the following general settings:
- Time-zone: A user can enter their timezone here, making the time shown of when forum topics were made more accurate. However, it is broken - and it will not be fixed. andresmh suggested thinking of it as "Scratch Time".
Within the Personality category (which can be found on the left below "Essentials" and above "Display"), a user can change their signature. A signature is generally a short message, or picture, or link to a project or anything the user wants, to be said under each post the user makes (the post and the signature will be seperated by a line of underscores). The only limits are:
- The user must have been on the forums for 15 days before they can have a signature. (This is to prevent spammers)
- Signatures cannot have more than one Enter.
- Signatures should be kept under 150 pixels.
Within the Display category (which can be found on the left below "Personality" and above "Privacy"), there are the following settings:
- Viewing posts: A user can change the following options to make a page load faster (yes or no):
- Show smileys as graphical icons.
- Show user signatures.
- Show images in user signatures.
- Show images on posts.
- Pagination: A user can change how many topics or posts to see per page.
Within the Privacy category (which can be found on the left below "Display" and above "Email Digests"), there are the following settings:
- E-mail address: A user can decide whether to show his/her e-mail adress, and if not, whether to allow form e-mail or not.
- Automatic Login: A user can decide whether the website should automatically login the user between visits (from the used IP Address)
- E-mail posts: A user can decide whether to allow a plain text version of the new post in the subscription e-mail.
Email Digests Edit
Within the Email Digests category (which can be found on the left below "Privacy"), there are the following settings:
- Type of Digest: A user can decide how often a digest should be emailed (None (unsuscribe), Daily, or Weekly (on Sunday)).
- Digest Options: A user can decide how a digest should be (the following yes or no), display exerpt of each message, include my messages in the digest, include only the messages since my last visit, and sent the digest, even if it will be empty.
- Digest Length: A user can decide how long the excerpt from each message should be: 50 characters, 150 characters, 300 characters, 600 characters, or whole message.
- Forum Summaries: A user can decide which forums to get summaries from.
On the menu bar, the middle choice is "Search". Here a user can type in keywords and adjust settings to find the topic/post the user wants.
- Keyword/Author: The first and main choice to find the topic a user wants is to search by keyword(s) or author.
- Forum-category: Users can narrow their search down is to choose a certain forum category to look in, and/or to choose to search in the topic, or the message, or both.
- Viewing search results: The last choice a user has to narrow their search down is to choose how to view his/her results. The user can choose how to sort it by, the sort order, and to search for posts or topics.
BBCode is a collection of formatting tags that are used to format users' forum posts. BBCode is based on the same principal as, and is very similar to, HTML. Information on most of the BBCode can be seen on Scratch Forums/Help, which can be gotten to by clicking on the link below the posting area. You can use BBCode for things such as colored text, underlined text, pictures, and links.
The Scratch Team have added tags to control the use of block images. Forum users can click images to add blocks to their forum posts, with [blocks] and [/blocks] surrounding the script(s). Despite the many images, some users prefer to use Text Blocks, a means of typing block text directly.