Plexibreath

    Pleasanton, California (SF Bay Area)
  • Posts: 111
HiString's Poll: Separate forums?
« Reply #20 on: June 06, 2004, 01:24:48 AM »
I understand your concern HiString, and it would be great if we could divide thing up into mic pres, compressors, EQs, etc.  But unfortunately, where I've seen this before it didn't work as intended.  An example is Ampage (one of my favorite forums), for all things tube guitar related.  It's divided into sections like "General Discussions", "Design and Construction", Homebrew Troubleshooting" and a few more.  So if you post a question you think is related to the catagory of design and construction in the "Design and Construction" area, it might get answered, but if you really really really want an answer, better pose the question in "General Discussions", because only there will it surely get answered.  The more eyes that your question passes by, but better chance someone will have the answer, it's a numbers game.

Here, if I have a question on my API 312 project, if I posted in the API section, and the guy who knows more than anyone else about the 312 just so happens to really be into cloning the LA2A, he may only be going to the Compressor section for the last few weeks and not aware of my question about the 312 over in the API 312 section.

So because of this, I would rather the meta-thread idea. that gets my vote.  But then I kind of like the caotic wild west nature of general forums provided in this case it sticks to DIY pro audio.

Kelley
The beatings will continue until morale improves.


mnats

HiString's Poll: Separate forums?
« Reply #21 on: June 06, 2004, 02:37:40 AM »
I used to think the single thread idea for a given project was a bad idea too.

Fortunately, the folks who wrote the software that runs this forum have created a really good search function. One of the things I finally discovered was by choosing "Display Results As: Posts" instead of the default "Topics" the search returns individual posts on long threads instead of the entire thread.

That way if all you want to know about is THAT 2180 vs. 2181 and the SSL Clone thread becomes 100 pages long (or indeed if the chips are discussed in another thread altogether) you only get the relevant posts.

If you want everything written by PRR you just stick his name in the Search for Author box - that's a great feature too.

As Jakob mentioned, threads have a way of veering off course - I seem to recall the SSL thread quickly became a discussion about a Royal wedding and the 2180 vs 2181 thread became a discussion about the dissection of a DBX 202 - and never really reached a conclusion about the original topic.

Search does the job of weeding out off-topic posts without resorting to manual sorting.

Now I wouldn't mind if the entire forum is a single thread.

That said, I love the name of the buy/sell/trade forum. Somebody's got a sense of style.

Eric Best

HiString's Poll: Separate forums?
« Reply #22 on: June 06, 2004, 03:55:18 PM »
I like the idea of a newbie forum,  even though I've been hanging out in TT since the beginning, I am still an electronics newbie and I always learn a lot from those threads.  Sometimes the other stuff gets a little over my head but I read it any way and try to figure it out, but I'm always on the lookout for basic information.
If you are too open minded, your brains will fall out.

Scenaria

HiString's Poll: Separate forums?
« Reply #23 on: June 06, 2004, 07:47:31 PM »
How about instead of calling it "newbie forum" which as suggested earlier might make some feel *small*

we just setup a 2nd forum called "Fire and Smoke"
for people who need advice on troubleshooting, repairs etc....

HiString

HiString's Poll: Separate forums?
« Reply #24 on: June 06, 2004, 08:00:34 PM »
I think the risk there is that you may then have info on for example, an La2, in two different forums.  This is kind of why I believe "grouping" information is so important, but obviously (and rightly so) there are other opinions and considering the "views to votes" and "member number to votes" ratios, I suspect a lot of people don't give a rat's arse..........and that makes me wonder why I bothered to be concerned or have this poll posted in the first place.

 :cool:
"Humans are analogue beings"

"Digital information lasts forever......................or maybe five years.

Whichever comes first"

gyraf

HiString's Poll: Separate forums?
« Reply #25 on: June 07, 2004, 10:27:55 AM »
It's not that I don't care - far from! - but I find it too hard to decide what would be best for this forum. So I'm lurking in the poll results.. :razz:

Jakob E.
..note to self: don't let Harman run your company..

HiString

HiString's Poll: Separate forums?
« Reply #26 on: June 07, 2004, 11:08:27 AM »
Jakob,

I'm well aware that you care :wink: .

I just feel that considering we had this change thrust upon us, we should make the most of the opportunity to make The Lab something more than we had at TT.   If the best we can do is replicate the old forum then we have wasted a wonderful opportunity that won't present itself again.

I "visit" two other forums that are of the "all in one" format and I can assure you that information soon gets pushed back and lost in old pages and human nature being what it is, most people tire of looking for information very quickly.  Also, search functions are not infallible and should not be totally relied upon.  People have expressed concern that if we have seperate sub-forums, that people won't bother to "visit" all the forums, thereby missing out on seeing new posts, etc............if people are too lazy to jump through the various forums, then how can we expect them to be motivated enough to search through more than the current page of posts.

As much as I like the idea of a democratic decision making process, this poll is a perfect example of why sometimes it is better for decisons to be made for the people rather than by the people.................from the 270 odd members we have had only 46 bother to vote.   Make your own conclusions from that.  

Actually, considering the lack of response, this poll should be ignored as the approx., 17% of members who voted cannot be realistically considered as represntative of the total membership.

ChrisO   :cool:
"Humans are analogue beings"

"Digital information lasts forever......................or maybe five years.

Whichever comes first"

gyraf

HiString's Poll: Separate forums?
« Reply #27 on: June 07, 2004, 11:38:31 AM »
I may be wrong - but I have a feeling that the mistrust in separate forums has it's roots in the way other forums are organized - with a very different tone and different "local" customs in the different sub-forums.

I remember over at the old place - that I was never feeling comfortable when outside of my "own" home turf. This also means that I must have missed huge amounts of potentially interesting info in the other forums.

Maybe it's a moderator thing - Kev certainly did a very good job over there, maneuvering subtly - the sign of a great diplomat.

So my guess is that the fear expressed here for the forum falling apart if split into subforums is a result of the slightly different "athmospheres" or "cultures" that tend to develop in subforums, making you feel really at home only at one place - and then it dosen't matter if that place is untidy.

So, for people to accept, use - and even like - subforums, we need a way of "synchronizing" or "aligning" all these.. Or something like that..

Hard to explain they are, sociological phenomenons. I don't claim to have understood it - even remotely..

do you think that this could be the problem?

what could be done, if this is the root of the problem?

..just thinking out loud..

Jakob E.
..note to self: don't let Harman run your company..

Scenaria

HiString's Poll: Separate forums?
« Reply #28 on: June 07, 2004, 11:50:52 AM »
if we could just put "folders" as stickeys at the top of this fourm... for major topics I think that would be perfect....

then everyone who comes in here would probably browse the stickey folders first...

dmlandrum

HiString's Poll: Separate forums?
« Reply #29 on: June 07, 2004, 11:53:44 AM »
Actually, you guys are giving me some great ideas for new forum software. There's no telling if I'll be able to code it up, though.
Darren Landrum

Be comforted that in the face of all aridity and disillusionment
And despite the changing fortunes of time,
There is always a big future in computer maintenance.


HiString

HiString's Poll: Separate forums?
« Reply #30 on: June 07, 2004, 12:47:07 PM »
You are probably at least partially correct, I think a lot of people do become comfortable in certain surroundings and consequently don't often look outside of their comfort zone...........you often see that over at CNCzone where there are so many different specialised forums that it is near impossible to cover all of them, consequently people tend to only frequent the forums that are of interest to them.

My concern is that while the "all in one" format is nice and cosy, it definitely isn't the most efficient way to run a forum such as this one and I don't believe that putting people's cosiness (sp) before forum functionality is the right way to go.

I like the idea of the "METAS" but as I understand it, the links contained in them will be periodically updated which means that they too can ultimately be pushed back out of sight or memory.  Maybe a compromise would be to have sub-forums, say for example for the major types of gear (comps, pre's, etc.) then have any necessary METAS or folders within each of those forums, (eg: the Pre forum could have METAS or folders for API, G9, Green, etc).

I don't claim to have all the answers, but I bet if through these discussions we end up implementing some form of structure like this, that people would adapt to it very quickly.

 :cool:
"Humans are analogue beings"

"Digital information lasts forever......................or maybe five years.

Whichever comes first"

HiString's Poll: Separate forums?
« Reply #31 on: June 07, 2004, 12:49:02 PM »
I agree we have a wonderful opportunity to be in on the building of a forum just the way we like it. As for the "low voter turnout", I don't think you can attribute it all to ambivolence. The way this big chance came about was a big upheaval and a lot of paranoya hav been generated. Those of us who are expressing oppinions should also take the added responsibility to know we are speaking for more than ourselves here.

I have heard from some that there may be a certain resistance to change here and that we are trying to just recreate TT as it was. Maybe so, but that may not be a bad thing. We are, afterall, TT. To a lot of people it was the "home" forum. I certainly liked it much better than any forum I ever went to. That is not to say it was perfect and could not have been improved, it could have I'm sure.

Now, The title of this post is "seperate forums", but what we are really dealing with is the establishment/reestablishment of our community. How do we best do that? Like Histring said, sometimes decissions are made for the people. This is one of those times. The result, I believe will not only set the tone here but make this either a mecca for DIY or just another one of the hundreds of forums out there.

HiString's Poll: Separate forums?
« Reply #32 on: June 07, 2004, 01:10:29 PM »
Man, I can't spell worth crap. I just read my last post and realized I didn't say what I thought was a good idea.

I think comfort wins out over efficiency every time. I am an admitted hermit and geezer but most people I know would put up with a little inefficience if they were comfortable. The question then becomes, how do we make this place efficient enough without loosing the comfortable feel. As many of us have stated, information was able to be gathered at TT about subjects people didn't even know existed because everything was thrown together. I am a novice but have wide interests. I found literally dozens of things at TT I had no clue about. It is not like that at other forums.

The thing I didn't like was when I went back to find information from last week, or last month, I could not always do that, and never easily.

I think the all inclusive forum structure creats the best atmosphere for immediate interest and knowledge. If we keep this but somehow incorporate a way to group things of similar type, that would suit most people best. I don't know if meta threads or sub folders do this best, but some of you smart people do.

HiString

HiString's Poll: Separate forums?
« Reply #33 on: June 07, 2004, 01:23:10 PM »
I don't think we need a huge amount of subdivision.........definitely not enough to fragment the community.

3.00 am and I'm off to bed.

G'nite all. :cool:
"Humans are analogue beings"

"Digital information lasts forever......................or maybe five years.

Whichever comes first"

PRR

HiString's Poll: Separate forums?
« Reply #34 on: June 07, 2004, 01:57:34 PM »
> I was never feeling comfortable when outside of my "own" home turf.
 
 That varies depending on the place.
 
> I don't claim to have understood it - even remotely..

Nor do I, nor does anybody.

But I have participated-in and then managed a technical forum for many years (from before Al Gore invented the internet). Part of the job was deciding how to split the total forum into sections.

While we were one section at RO, I was unhappy. There was too darn much traffic. If I was away a few days, the thread I was following might fall several pages down the listings. I think many good threads died that way when 20 new threads got started and the old one fell off the top page.

On the other hand, too many sections is bad. People don't get around to all of them, and some whither away. My rule of thumb, with about 16 sections possible, was to look sharply at any section carrying less than 10% of traffic, see if its traffic would reach more members if merged into another section; and any section below 5% needed a very good reason to stay open. Obviously this implies enough history to see traffic trends; today is far too soon to use that plan here.

Making the First section "General" has good and bad points. If someone is unsure what section is best, they feel free to post there. However it tends to be a catch-all unless several section leaders regularly move threads to the "best" section.

I am against a "Newbie" section on several points. Some people may not like the "Newbie" label (or any label that has the same idea). Second it will be lonely in there unless several of the most helpful regulars read and reply regularly. Finally, all of us are "newbies" in some aspect of the DIY hobby.

The forum I managed for years was about PCs. It had roots in the IBM PC, but eventually incorporated "all" PCs. We were always torn between "Parts sections" (hard drives, CPU/RAM, video, etc) and "brand sections" (IBM, Dell, Gateway, P-B, etc). Obviously the PC racket changed over the years: when it was "all IBM" it was parts, when the other brands grew strong and were different from IBM, we had brands, and as the industry settled on generic Taiwan, Korean, and Main-China parts (and brand loyalty faded) we shifted mostly back to parts-sections.

I don't see a big difference between Tube and Transistor. Electrons is electrons, resistors and caps are everywhere.

We might consider "Theory". That's probably not the best name, but it will do to start. This is for understanding, rather than for practical implementation.

There is a long tradition of a "Chat", Village Inn", "Pub", etc section. Rule is: if you are not talking about hardware (forum topic) but about your horses, the weather, politics, etc, you take it to the Inn (or a moderator moves the thread). (And if you start talking about hardware again, the thread should be moved to the proper section.) The Inn is very good for building community, without distracting those who just want technical threads.

There are things that do not belong in a Technical or an Inn section. The very first section should be "Official Notices" or "Forum News". Section changes, new moderators, forum host/URL changes, pleas for money, go there. Posting should be restricted to a small (more than one) group of forum leaders.

I had a "Hot Topics" section for flame-wars. DIYaudio has "Texas". I would hope we do not need a fire-pit here, but if we do we should not be ashamed to start one.

"For Sale" section is useful in many communities. I see this has already happened.

I'd like to see more than one technical section. I don't think we want many-dozen sections for every possible bit of vintage gear someone has seen. I think we should grow slow: see what topics are long-term popular and crowding-out other topics, and split-out sections as the opportunity arises.

CJ

HiString's Poll: Separate forums?
« Reply #35 on: June 07, 2004, 02:02:03 PM »
I vote to keep one forum for now, and if it gets out of  hand, add maybe one more, thats  it.

One of the problems with the old place is that it got WAY to splintered.
It was too overwhelming to check out all those forums, so people stayed where they where.

I have a suggestion for a temporary forum or chat room.

It would be called something like "Hate Dept" or "Time Out!"


It would work like this:

Somebody gets drunks and starts flaming and or starts talking politics.
Someone else starts to argue.
The thread becomes OT.
Someone needs to get booted, but we don't want to be too harsh.
Someone would put up a "Wrap It Up" emoticon which would mean, "you guys are bothering me, please wrapthat negativity up and take it to the "Hate Dept."

Then, they could both go to another forum or better yet, a chat room and resolve any differences. with us being able to "check in" and see the action!

We could even temporarily block their password from the main forum until thay have chilled out.

Does this sound too lame?
Probably too much hassle, we are mature enough to not need it?

I just have a feeling that we are going to get some unwanted visitors from you know where, and I don't want any of that crap to get in the way of transistors and tubes!


cj
If I can't fix it, I can fix it so nobody else can!
Frank's Tube Page: www.mif.pg.gda.pl/homepages/frank/vs.html
Guitar Amps: http://bmamps.com/Tech_sch.html

Scenaria

HiString's Poll: Separate forums?
« Reply #36 on: June 07, 2004, 02:08:47 PM »
I dont think thats needed CJ...

we never really had alot of arguing in the last place... and the arguing that went on was really out of humor than anything...


I still believe a "troubleshooting I need help forum" and This one is enough... but thats just my opinion. :\

PRR

HiString's Poll: Separate forums?
« Reply #37 on: June 07, 2004, 05:55:31 PM »
    [*]Forum News
    [*]General DIY
    [*]Microphones
    [*]Mike Preamps
    [*]Mixers
    [*]Limiters
    [*]Equalizers
    [*]Chassis work
    [*]Soldering
    [*]Theory
    [*]For Sale/ Jobs
    [*]Village Inn (off topic)
    [*]Fire Pit (flame wars)
    [/list]

    kaur

    HiString's Poll: Separate forums?
    « Reply #38 on: June 07, 2004, 06:54:32 PM »
    As a lurker for year or more I vote for one forum,
    but now I have trouble to read one day posts.
    Too much goods. :shock:
    maybe button to Meta threads or separete section for this?

    HiString

    HiString's Poll: Separate forums?
    « Reply #39 on: June 07, 2004, 07:47:39 PM »
    PRR has summed it up quite nicely, although I didn't see the need for quite so many divisions.  What may be more useful is a "How To" section which could cover how to solder, how to make PCB's, how to (or what's involved in making) make chassis, etc.

    CJ, I wondered where you had gone......lol.  If there is going to be a reorganising of The Lab, it should be worked out and implemented sooner rather than later, when people have become too entrenched in what, in all reality was a forum set up in one hell of a hurry.  I'm sure Admin didn't have time to worry about this aspect of things and probably didn't anticipate the rapid migration of people.

    Guys, we can either sink or swim ......to me, sinking means hanging onto the old ways, swimming means moving on from the past and in some small way, helping make The Lab one hell of a site to be reckoned with.

    ChrisO   :cool:
    "Humans are analogue beings"

    "Digital information lasts forever......................or maybe five years.

    Whichever comes first"


     

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