One thing that's always troubled me is timing out when I'm in the Customize Character screen. I like to take my time and fiddle with the various options when I'm altering my characters, but I time out a lot when I'm doing that. My current workaround solution is to have a neatly-formatted GDoc where I write everything I want first, then copy & paste into the Customize screen to make sure it works. But, even then, if I see typos or changes I need to make to get colors to look right or whatever, I can still time out. And, of course, when I time out I lose all the changes I made, so I have to be extra-careful and copy back to my GDoc anything I fixed before hitting the Save button, because I lose track of time and might have timed out without realizing.
So, it'd be nice if either the timeout feature was extended when viewing the Customize Character screen, or a countdown timer was included so I could see whether I've timed out yet or not. When I mentioned my plight in Banter, at least one other person said they have the same problem, so maybe more people will see this and offer some ideas, too?
While I totally agree with the idea for a longer time for that, I don't think it's likely to happen.
A simple work around is the Color Testing Tool CMJ made a while back!
No harm in throwing it out there. When I'm customizing, I usually do it in big, dramatic shifts, and working in one screen is easier than working across three different ones. Also, that preview doesn't allow for the formatting codes, so Trowa's bio doesn't even work a little bit in there. ...I wonder if CMJ knows that?
Would it help if the current timeout limit were to be extended? I think right now it's 15 minutes. (It feels more like 10 minutes to me, but I'm pretty sure that's just because I am slowing down with age.) I do know that I am always having to log back in again, over and over, while I am working on resolving petitions or other modly duties. And everyone who plays the game sooner or later forgets, and loses a carefully wrought Distraction to timeout. (It has even caught CMJ.)
There would be some downsides to a longer timeout period. People would look like they're active when they aren't, for longer. I think we still may have a few badnavs that players can resolve on their own by timing out and logging back in, so people caught in one of those would have to wait longer. And, of course, there might be some performance implications -- CMJ would know best about those.
If it were extended to, say, 30 minutes, that wouldn't entirely fix your customizing problem, or those lost distractions. But it would make them happen less often, perhaps.
Maybe, Sessine! It does seem to timeout a lot more frequently on me recently, too.
I'm wondering if there's a way to change how long it takes for someone to time out depending on which page they're on? Like, you can keep the 15 minute limit on chat spaces and jungle, but extend it just in the Customize Character link. ...that wouldn't solve timing out while writing a Distraction, though. :-\
I too have lost carefully composed and finely wrought distractions to time out, (and it's the ones you lose that are always the most eloquent somehow, aren't they?) BUT! I have made a discovery!
If, you use your browser 'click to go back a page' thingummy, then it takes you back to the page you were writing your distraction in, complete with distraction! Isn't that nice?
No idea if this works with the customisation page or not, but it might be worth trying? It could save an awful lot of cussing.
If it makes a difference, I use Chrome.
Another potential option is that the browser extension Lazarus will save recent textbox inputs. It will actually work on each text box you've changed too! I tested it after I finally caved a while ago and downloaded it (losing dwelling edits because of timeout is painful). It's been quite useful since and gets mentioned now and then in Banter. There's no option for IE, sadly, but Chrome, Firefox and Safari all support it.
I have to admit, the irony of spam trying to flog essay writing using really bad English did appeal to me as well.
EDIT: Trying to read through what I just posted, I realised that my own English writing skills could be better as well. Does anybody know of a site that will write essays for me? Anybody?
The Improbable Island Enquirer - Forum