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 Forum index » Taking the Puppy out for a walk » Suggestions
Suggestions for Forum Improvement
Moderators: Flash, Ian, JohnMurga
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JohnMurga
Site Admin


Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 586
Location: Far to the east

PostPosted: Tue 27 Feb 2007, 06:24    Post_subject:  

Off topic posts from this topic have been moved to :

http://www.murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?t=15852

There are people trying to make worthwhile contributions on this thread (which is sticky), however if you want to continue the debate started by mark feel free to go to the above thread.

Cheers
JohnM
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mbutts


Joined: 11 Nov 2006
Posts: 231
Location: sitn on an iceburg waiting for my next meal to swim by.

PostPosted: Tue 27 Feb 2007, 10:51    Post_subject:  

PAKT said
"Perhaps a solution would be to keep this forum but make it read-only so the valuable information contained within it can be referenced, and a new empty forum"

i agree KEEP the data as read only for future reference.

if ur going to update the forum, why not look at the whole puppy website system and do some updates there as well at the same time or over time?

what about standardizing each main page for all the puppy websites that has a common look and feel?

maybe add a news box to each puppy website (whether it be the developers site, regular forum, wiki, ect) that is sent from a central location to tell everyone breaking news like new release or "try this, this is cool" or "we need testers for this" or even "anyone want to help with the ............. project"

it might make it easier for us to know whats going on in the whole community.

how bout someone setting up a pet that wud do puppy rss and podcasts easily so one could keep up to speed with puppy news? maybe even a news ticker integrated right into puppy that you could toggle on?

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SnowDog

Joined: 05 Jan 2006
Posts: 312
Location: Manitoba Canada

PostPosted: Tue 27 Feb 2007, 17:08    Post_subject:  

Dear John; No Pun intended.

At the behest of several e-mails and one PM, whereby I was given many kudos for my offer to help and asked to re-consider dropping out of this conversation, I thought I should try once more.

ON - TOPIC! (as per my last post and it's very pointed relation to the subject of this original post)...

I made what I felt was, a very valid suggestion namely;.

Do the majority of members who participate in the puppy community have anything against the idea of raising/donating, money to host and operate a new (or new version of this...) forum, that would be funded and controlled by the voting public?

I sincerely apologize, if some part of my answer to the original question caused you to feel that my entire post needed to be placed in an off-topic thread, so this time I have not included any reference to any person or event at all.

I will simply re-iterate my original offer:
A public pledge of $100 to be put toward a fund to provide hosting and maintenance of a democratically controlled forum and/or other help system, for the good of Puppy Linux in general and any and all who have or will create derivatives of Puppy.

I sincerely hope that you will see the validity and complete lack of "off-topic-ness", in this post and leave it right here where it was posted so that others can be subjected to the idea and form their own opinions accordingly.

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Pizzasgood


Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 6270
Location: Knoxville, TN, USA

PostPosted: Tue 27 Feb 2007, 21:20    Post_subject:  

Quote:
I accept the point that moderators can't move posts - pity. Maybe some clearer directions as to what should be posted into specific topics is needed.

We can move topics, and we can split posts into their own topic. What we can't do is move posts between threads. As in, the this post could not be inserted into the Beginner's Sticky, but it could be given it's own "What moderators can do" thread.

Just to avoid confusion Wink


Ah, I see we have new "Puppy Derivatives" and "Puppy Projects" sections. Perhaps I'll round up my Pizzapup stuff and deliver it to the new location. Razz

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GeoffS

Joined: 24 Feb 2006
Posts: 427
Location: Australia

PostPosted: Wed 28 Feb 2007, 07:17    Post_subject:  

pakt and mbutts - that would probably be the best solution. Most things grow out of their original form and eventually need radical overhaul. However I believe it would be a lot of work for John and his few helpers. There must be a simpler way of making the forum more newcomer friendly.

Snowdog - are you suggesting a new forum with some form of financial contribution from the members? I don't understand how that would work - I need some explanations.

Surely this forum can be changed 'bit by bit' to make it more suitable for the current Puppy environment.

Question - can topics be made read-only? There would be obvious problems, such as solutions being provided after a topic was made RO, however I'm sure a work-around could be found.

That's all for the moment.
Cheers
Geoff.
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amish

Joined: 24 Sep 2006
Posts: 616

PostPosted: Wed 28 Feb 2007, 07:56    Post_subject:  

i would hate to see the forum locked. is it a money thing?

people really underestimate how cross platform and cross browser friendly phpbb is. yeah, it's a bit bloated (and i hate that) but i don't want to use a newsreader. i have a strong aversion to them, and i used them before i used online forums. eventually newsreaders came that would work in a browser, even work like online forums, but those services (while being a great idea) are often littered with ads, censor posts, and are poor (in practice) for other reasons.

the forum is a great way to communicate. i agree, not just whole-heartedly, but i think it is past time we looked for ways OTHER than the forum to do CERTAIN things. the forum is not a solution to all tasks.

but it is a great thing. without it, we would be without a great thing. let's consider the easiest transition or evolution possible: keep the forum! as long as we can afford it (john, i wish i knew your snailmail, there's no way i'm using paypal or a credit card, but you're at the top of my list and have been for a while.) and use other things for doing other things.

want a newsgroup? fine... make one. we already have too many forums. i tried participating at the dev forum on whatever site with that Horrid forum system. i signed up, it let me login, then it never kept my login. worse, when i tried to open more than one post at once (like i always do here) it banned me for two hours because it thought i was bot ffs. stuff like that i hope to not see more of. you never miss the water, of course.

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SnowDog

Joined: 05 Jan 2006
Posts: 312
Location: Manitoba Canada

PostPosted: Wed 28 Feb 2007, 14:41    Post_subject:  

Geoff,
re: "Snowdog - are you suggesting a new forum with some form of financial contribution from the members?"

No, I wasn't suggesting a new forum, I was simply trying to offer an idea as to how to possibly change some things that appeared to be wrong with this one, (based on what I read when I first looked at this thread).

re: "I don't understand how that would work - I need some explanations"

Okay, just because you asked me, I'll try really hard, but I don't see how I can completely explain it without risking another trip to the spam bucket.

Part 1. Money:
As an individual puppy user, I am willing to pay (some amount) of money, to see the forum continue to exist and to be improved if/when/where deemed necessary by the majority (and) when those changes don't cause engineering nightmares for the admin/s.
I'd like to believe that many others would cheerfully step up and do the same.

Part 2. Accountability:

I think that most members are aware that I avoid these so called "pissing contests", at almost any cost, but this time I just happened on in here when, whether or not they were accurate statements or personal issues being argued about, it sent up a red flag in my mind.
I'm not saying that anyone is guilty of what he/they were accused of, because I don't have those facts. I am saying that the possibility of unbecoming practices, was asserted or accused and the first thought that came into my mind was...

True or false, right or wrong, it really makes no difference, because it is impossible to legitimately defend one self against such accusations as long as the forum exists as a privately owned and operated entity. (if that is even close to an accurate interpretation of the situation), I tried to ask that question in my initial post.
I am really sorry to see such things being bantered about in what I see as the only obvious place that a new user can come to for help.

I firmly believe that the "new user" is the single most important part of this (or any other similar) effort. Without him or her, this whole thing amounts to no more than a personal play-toy for a few people.

So, if I'm right, then at this point, the forum is the main source of support for those all important new users, (of any version of puppy).

As such, I think it would be terrifying for them to be sent here from within the welcome page of their new OS, thinking they can freely ask questions and be treated with respect and land in the middle of a conversation like the part of this one that was put in the OT thread.

Why?
Because they are a new user and they don't know any of the history of these things and they might not care to stick around long enough to try to figure out who is right or who is wrong.
and...
Because they are new and because it is almost second nature to most humans these days to fear some sort of "big brother" type figure or entity, the new user might be inclined to read such a post and think something like... "Hmmm... if there's nothing to hide and no truth or merit to these accusations, then why respond to such gibberish by belittling the contributions of three long time members?

That's not fair to the admin, or any of the moderators, and especially not to the puppy effort.

So... what to do?
Well, that was the topic wasn't it?

Whether it's this forum, a new forum, or a completely different support network, there will always be differences of opinion, if not downright un-acceptable material posted.
So, someone with very calm nerves, and the interests of the project at large, will sooner or later have to make some hard decisions about what is prudence and what is censorship.
I don't envy anyone that responsibility, but I do see the point that was being contested previously.

Maybe a new mission statement or user agreement would be in order.
Something like...
"I promise that if I use the forum for posting anything that is deemed by a majority of 13 of it's randomly chosen members, to be defamatory or incite-full, racist, purposefully disruptive, or in contravention to the general good of the project as a whole, you can remove or edit my posts, issue a public warning and ban me if I ever do it again.

Maybe new users should have to pass a "proper forum usage" course, before they are allowed to post anything. (never mind that one... I wouldn't be allowed to post anymore) Wink

As long as this is assumed to be a free speech type of public meeting place while simultaneously being privately held or controlled, it opens the door to such accusations of preferential treatment, censorship, etc.
I actually thought that the suggestion of that simple change, would be a welcome one for parties on both sides of that argument.

Cheers

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amish

Joined: 24 Sep 2006
Posts: 616

PostPosted: Wed 28 Feb 2007, 17:30    Post_subject:  

Quote:
Maybe new users should have to pass a "proper forum usage" course, before they are allowed to post anything. (never mind that one... I wouldn't be allowed to post anymore) Wink

As long as this is assumed to be a free speech type of public meeting place while simultaneously being privately held or controlled, it opens the door to such accusations of preferential treatment, censorship, etc.
I actually thought that the suggestion of that simple change, would be a welcome one for parties on both sides of that argument.


basically, it seems as though you're saying that a forum where this is open speech (even *gasp* controversy and argument) is something a newbie can't handle walking in on. just like how if you walk in on your parents doing it, you'll be messed up for the rest of your life and end up unable to use elevators because of some freudian internal collapse.

rather than try sweeping politically-correct reform of this place we use to *communicate* thought, not *merely* provide technical support, or replace it with some similar garbage, i suggest we look for a way to provide squeaky-clean support in some very simple, no-bs kind of way... maybe a free forum- since no one will go there anyway.

i'm being unreasonable, and i'm sorry. you probably have a good idea somewhere in this, and so far you've managed to convince me of something else. because this is my own *personal* misunderstanding, maybe you can pm me and explain in a way that is more detailed or something, away from any public argument that someone might walk in the middle of and think "omg linux is run by a**holes! i'm going to use windows because the manual is shiney, plus i don't need one because i only use it for email." on the other hand, if you don't think the forum is PC enough, maybe you should just say that.

and i'm REALLY sorry if i took everything you said out of context. it wasn't on purpose, it's not out of any general disrespect for you (actually i hope your business is doing well) and if i'm wrong about what you're saying, than this post is just unneeded trouble.

i don't think you ended up in the other thread because of anything *you* said tho. i think it was wrong place, wrong time is all.

p.s. the day that humans have to take a course before they're allowed to speak is not a day you wanna be within a planet and a half of me. as it is, they take courses that teach them how to never actually say (or think) anything. intend to have other plans.
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SnowDog

Joined: 05 Jan 2006
Posts: 312
Location: Manitoba Canada

PostPosted: Wed 28 Feb 2007, 18:24    Post_subject:  

amish,
No offence taken and no need to appologize.
I likely made my point as clear as mud, as I'm very capable of doing from time to time.

Thank you for the very fair tone of your reply.

I will PM you and try to elaborate (or de-laborate) as may be required. Perhaps if I can somehow get you understanding what I meant, you can come back here and put it into some words that more people will readily understand.

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Flash
Official Dog Handler


Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 11083
Location: Arizona USA

PostPosted: Wed 28 Feb 2007, 18:45    Post_subject:  

GeoffS wrote:
...There must be a simpler way of making the forum more newcomer friendly.

The simplest possible way would be to find a forum that is better, and simply copy whatever they are doing. However, many people have said that this is the most friendly Linux forum they've seen. We must be doing something right. Smile

GeoffS wrote:
Surely this forum can be changed 'bit by bit' to make it more suitable for the current Puppy environment...

An evolutionary or incremental approach to forum improvement. That's the one I like. Simply ( Confused ) upgrading the forum's phpBB software dramatically reduced spam posts.
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mbutts


Joined: 11 Nov 2006
Posts: 231
Location: sitn on an iceburg waiting for my next meal to swim by.

PostPosted: Wed 28 Feb 2007, 19:48    Post_subject:  

i agree the forum is very friendly. ppl go out of their way to be courtious and polite to others.

im curious what it costs to maintain the sites per month. maybe someone could post a figure and somewhere update it as funds come in over the month. im all for helping out with what ever i can to help defrey costs.

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JohnMurga
Site Admin


Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 586
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PostPosted: Wed 28 Feb 2007, 21:12    Post_subject:  

mbutts wrote:
i agree the forum is very friendly. ppl go out of their way to be courtious and polite to others.

im curious what it costs to maintain the sites per month. maybe someone could post a figure and somewhere update it as funds come in over the month. im all for helping out with what ever i can to help defrey costs.


Running the forum has been costly over the couple of years it's been operating (in terms of cash, heartache and loss of co-hosted sites). However, even though we now have dedicated top-notch hosting the small Google banner at the bottom of the page currently covers all monetary costs.

Which are about $30 a month, with the ad revenue being roughly about that same amount every month ... There is cheaper hosting out there, but it proved to not be able to take the volume of visits this site has eventually built up to.

However, without the hard work of the moderators the site would not be what it is ...

Cheers
JohnM
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GeoffS

Joined: 24 Feb 2006
Posts: 427
Location: Australia

PostPosted: Thu 01 Mar 2007, 07:03    Post_subject:  

I haven't gone away - Google seems to keep vanishing from the local DNS and anything that has Google references in it hangs.
A long post is impossible. I get my router to ping Google and it all works for a few minutes - then - Sad
I'll be back
Geoff
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GeoffS

Joined: 24 Feb 2006
Posts: 427
Location: Australia

PostPosted: Thu 01 Mar 2007, 17:53    Post_subject:  

Well, it all appears to be working this morning so I will try to repeat what I wrote last night before it vanished into a black hole when I tried to preview it.
I also believe that the forum is very friendly. I rarely see a post go unreplied to or receive an off-hand reply. This is far better than most forums. Some are little better than black holes Laughing .
I don't believe that 'slanging matches' will be a put-off to many people. These things happen in most social groups and those not involved will just 'step around' them.
My main concerns involve things such as how the various topics are used. There are many and I suspect that few are used exactly as intended. Many are used in a rather inconsistent manner.
Another concern is respondents tending to be careful to not be accused of 'teaching their grandmothers to suck eggs'. (Hope that is understood by all nationalities Laughing ) Even if the user who is being replied to doesn't need everything explained in detail a later reader of the thread might. Nothing can be more 'off-putting' to the newcomer than a long string of strange jargon!
I'm not familiar with the powers of moderators but surely, if they could take some action to limit just these two concerns the forum might be a little friendlier for the newcomer.
The current discussion about making Puppy modular might provide an opportunity for further improvements and consistancy.
This is nothing like what I wrote last night Laughing
Cheers
Geoff
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amish

Joined: 24 Sep 2006
Posts: 616

PostPosted: Fri 02 Mar 2007, 18:44    Post_subject:  

Quote:
Another concern is respondents tending to be careful to not be accused of 'teaching their grandmothers to suck eggs'. (Hope that is understood by all nationalities Laughing )


actually i'm probably missing some context there. there was a cartoon called "ren and stimpy" that had an extremely foreign feel to it (to us merkins) but seemed to be a huge hit in the states, "it's log! log! it's big it's heavy, it's wood! it's log! log! it's better than bad, it's good!" but we assumed that stinky wizzletiegs (singing the happy happy, joy joy song) was just being nonsensical when he said "i'll teach you to be happy! i'll teach your grandmother to suck eggs!" so i have to think i'm missing something when someone uses it without mentioning ren and stimpy. it means what? pm if you can't post it here, when you stop laughing, of course. i totally agree that people that come here aren't going to leave because of some minor squabbling among the regulars.
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