As you might have inferred, I am fairly new here and not yet familiar with the site's functions. I noticed there was a "1" indicated here (which has turned into a "5" during the time it took to write this post).

I am referring to this visual element:

Screenshot Reference

I have checked my profile page, and while there have been new activity events, there weren't any I noticed that would correlate to this number. On the other hand, on some of my browser tabs -- specifically, ones subsequent to me examining my profile page and related pages -- the "badge" is no longer present.

This is confusing, as the tab that I had left alone to take a screenshot of updated to "5", whereas the remaining tabs did not show any change.

What causes the browser's notification badge updates on this site?

  • Uh, what Firelord probably meant to say: This is "Meta", where we discuss things "about our main site" – while you rather asked a technical question on Android, which would belong to the main site. Or something about how SE works – which then rather would belong to meta.stackexchange.com.
    – Izzy Mod
    Feb 25 '19 at 22:52
  • I may have caused some confusion, for which I apologize: I posted this question on Meta regarding viewing the website from a web browser (Vivaldi) on PC (Win10). I held a presumption that the element in question originated from the site itself and not by the browser; I made such an assumption because it would seem oddly arbitrary -- maybe even invasive depending on circumstances -- for the browser to interpret and display such information arbitrarily as an external party. However, I work in a different industry, so I had no basis for such a preconception, my apologies for any ignorance.
    – Arctiic
    Feb 25 '19 at 22:57
  • The screenshot is quite small and doesn't hold enough details to be sure – but indeed I'd say this is a "badge" on the Android.SE icon. In that case, Meta Stack Exchange should indeed be the right place (that's for general questions affecting all SE sites).
    – Izzy Mod
    Feb 25 '19 at 23:03
  • 1
    AFAIK, Stack Exchange (this site) is using WebSocket to notify the browser if there are new questions or not, and based on my previous experience on Chrome, browsers that support badge notification will show the number of updates on the browser's tab. (This was the case for pinned tab on Chrome, until Chrome removed the badge notification feature)
    – Andrew T. Mod
    Feb 26 '19 at 3:48
  • That sounds like the most probable cause, accounts for why only that specific tab was affected and also wouldn't have anything to do with my account activity stream. Thank you very much for clarifying!
    – Arctiic
    Feb 26 '19 at 8:29

Stack Exchange uses WebSocket on some pages (e.g. question lists, chat room) to push updates (e.g. new questions/modified posts, new chat messages) from their server to the client's browser.

At the same time, SE also notifies the browser how many updates there are by setting the badge text.

Browsers that support badge notification (e.g. Vivaldi, also pinned tabs on Chrome in the past) will show the number of updates on the tab if possible (Vivaldi), or otherwise show a static indicator (pinned tabs on Chrome in the past).

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