I spent about 15 hours over the last few days fixing up the message list for the forum. The biggest task was to add a highlighted “current” message and the ability to navigate message by message. Previously, the forum code only navigated page-by-page. The difficult part of changing this was that the search results had to maintain their position as well, meaning that those parameters had to be passed on for the next view of the message list.
The trickiest decision was what color to make the highlighted message. Outlook Express uses a dark blue background and reverses the text color to make that light on dark. But this won’t work on a web page since I am relying on the colors to change once a message is viewed. If I set the text color, then this won’t happen. When an Outlook Express window is inactive, the background of the highlighted message becomes gray. I tried various other light colors, and while maybe not the best, the gray is at least consistent with OE and looks okay.
Also, I put in place code to bold any messages that are newer than the user’s previous login date. This is similar to the way OE shows unread messages. The only difference is that these messages do not get “unbolded” within a session once the user views them. To do that, I’d have to keep track of each message’s status for each user, which is definitely overkill.