Yeah, I wanted to do something like that but I was having trouble figuring out what the best approach would be for "quiet" interaction detection. Since it occurred to me that people might
actually start applying the thing in their free nodelets right away, I just implemented the first solution that came to mind so that tye
's concerns would be addressed sooner rather than later. I'm not sure if binding a page-wide event would work that well? I haven't done that before, so if someone with experience here wants to give me a hint, it'd be appreciated.
As to server load, I don't think the "talk" solution adds any appreciable load. If you aren't talking anyway, the server has to load the contents of the CB every 10 seconds for those 10 minutes, or about 60 times. Clicking "talk" triggers one extra round trip. That extra trip vs. the 60 that are already happening is hopefully not a big deal.
Of course, the difference is that the CB update loads the chatterbox sidebar upper
node, which (hopefully? maybe?) takes less server effort because it only
renders the CB contents and any direct messages for the user. On the other hand, as far as I can tell, submitting a talk request might be doing more work, even if it's empty. Someone with more knowledge of the CB might be able to give me better information on what nodes to request/submit to make this nicer to the server in general.