Being Dismissive when help is offered ...
« on: April 19, 2009, 06:42:44 AM »
Quite a bit of this going on lately and I'm getting a little tired of it.
When someone asks for advice on gear / building / de-bugging then please remember that there
are a LOT of very experienced electrical and musical engineers on this board who are happy to try
and help YOU with your issues ..... at no charge whatsoever !

Be a little more courteous people, as I for one don't want to see people not answering and loosing out
on some of that incredible knowledge.

I don't remember ever personally dismissing or putting anyone down on here in three years, it's just
not necessary.

"Success is the ability to go from one failure to another with no loss of enthusiasm"

Re: Being Dismissive when help is offered ...
« Reply #1 on: April 19, 2009, 07:37:55 AM »
I understand where you are coming from.
But i still think that we drift away further every day from what this group once was about.
Back in the day this was a group of people interested in building gear as well as learning theory and understanding why something works and why not.
Today it seems to me that many people here are only interested in building (cheap) gear and don't care too much about learning this stuff.
I think it's a bit irritating to see people with several hundred posts asking absolutely beginner questions like ohms law and also not be able to identify the components they need for their new project.

I also think that much of this came by the fact that we now have so many kits offering, group buys and what not. It makes the start and entry to this a bit too easy.
Back in the day there was a schematic, a layout and helpful people here. But you still had to make your own boards, or try to organize where to get them, get the parts and simply do your homework.

Sometimes i think it's good to remind people here that they should be spending more time learning about this stuff. It's do it YOURSELF. To me it's just part of the
game to make my own BOM lists, thinking about the project, trying to figure out why the unit doesn't work, fixing the problems myself.

This group once was a group with non-commercial interests, helping out each other to learn how to build this stuff. It was never intended to be a source of cheap gear but i think it continues to grow into this direction.

I feel that this is probably also what jensenmann said in the other thread. Yet he got some not so nice comments. Many people here just don't know where this group came from so they don't see the development into something completely different.

I know my little "rant" isn't completely on topic and directed at what you said but the recent days here just made me realize it even more what i just wrote.

« Last Edit: April 19, 2009, 07:40:56 AM by Infernal_Death »


Re: Being Dismissive when help is offered ...
« Reply #2 on: April 19, 2009, 08:04:04 AM »
I see where your coming from Flo, but rather than dismiss somebody for 'missing the point' could people not just walk on by?

I find it very very hard to learn from books/internet, and hour on the desk is about the same as a week in a book to me, I cant seem to grasp things mentally without physically touching things. I do feel that some people dont put in the leg work needed, but maybe a pointer to a relevant info post rather than a dismissive 'RTFM' would be more in line with the boards ethos.

I keep thinking about doing an article on a piece of equipment from a newbies perspective, not only where the bits go but what those bits are doing as well...

Are you professionally stupid, or just a gifted amateur.

Iain Westland (UK)


Re: Being Dismissive when help is offered ...
« Reply #3 on: April 19, 2009, 08:24:27 AM »
Lot of new people here are building very well documented projects for which EVERY question  has already been answered (unless you're doing a new mod of some kind that is..).
They just don't bother to read the entire official help threads or are complaining that the search engine can't manage his way trough the clutter of all the same newbie questions.

My advice is: before you start any project, read all you can find about it, including the ultra long help threads. My experience is that in the end it WILL save you hours of troubleshooting.

OTOH, I learned most when troubleshooting am I going with this.... :-\
"Knowing that you are dreaming, however, does not automatically guarantee full rationality.
Then again, being awake doesn't ensure good thinking, either." -  Lynne Levitan


Re: Being Dismissive when help is offered ...
« Reply #4 on: April 19, 2009, 08:34:19 AM »
where am I going with this.... :-\

some of the threads help you make the items, but they have turned into a painting by numbers, even the trouble shouting sections so you can build and TS an item with nothing more than basic soldering skills. Nothing learnt.

then again, it is blatantly obvious that some dont read the threads (most enjoyable and inspiring bit for me) at all, yet alone quickly scanning them.

Are you professionally stupid, or just a gifted amateur.

Iain Westland (UK)


Re: Being Dismissive when help is offered ...
« Reply #5 on: April 19, 2009, 09:15:47 AM »
« Last Edit: April 19, 2009, 09:34:39 AM by RedNoise »
If your neighbour is hunger : don't give him fish , teach him how to fish ...
if you don't like it don't buy it ;-)  [Wolker Texas Ranger] ( ;-) )


Re: Being Dismissive when help is offered ...
« Reply #6 on: April 19, 2009, 10:08:16 AM »
There has been a influx of low posting people recently , who
even if they post in the relevent thread , needlessly lengthen it
and then complain about that and post a separate thread
all from not reading the meta's and threads to begin with .
[ even if it takes reading through it MORE than one time ]
it's tempting and easier just to ask but that doesn't cultivate
and support the info already in place [ with previous effort ]

i think some of this is from other site grp buys , flattering that
they look to you guys to fix the problems but it reminds me of
the xmas giveaway threads where people come out of nowhere
for the easy way . [maybe desperate ]

So do you ignore it , or feel the right to educate ?

maybe they don't realize they're looking for a specific answer
which isn't the right one ,
maybe they can't give up trying to be right , let em be
maybe it's a good reminder to clean threads , that does clog them
like a flame war sometimes .

But steady & strong i say  , if you can post a link that you have handy
great , if it's a supportive reminder that they'll find the answers , great
if it's a reference to a paid service , maybe they'll get an idea of value
[ including this place ]
if it's a non response , maybe they'll get the idea that they need to keep looking
and ask in a different way [ to which they may get send to the meta's
some of the meta's haven't been kept up from those who started them
[ years ago , the neve comes to mind ]

O.k. who can help me save more money ?

also see my accountability thread , i need my ass kicked
but i'm scared to ask

GKB Audio / Greg Boboski


Re: Being Dismissive when help is offered ...
« Reply #7 on: April 19, 2009, 10:23:26 AM »
I wonder if I am in this category called "newcommer who has little intention of learning except to leach and sap the minds of the experienced at their own peril in order for me to make cheap projects and take advantage of these kind wise old  members." Often I do think this board treats people like me this way and I am often reluctant to ask a question for fear of the wrath of experienced engineers cyber yelling at me. I have noted my thoughts below and apologise if they drag on a bit and are annoying. Feel free to skip if you like. 

1) Working example of newcomer/experienced:
Only a few weeks ago I asked what I thought was a legitimate question about the extent of a mic body on mic tone verses the electronics. I got such a blasting from an "experienced" member to the effect that I was obviously someone with no experience in using professional microphones whatsoever. He then went on to explain how famous a u47 was. Now there was little appreciation that I might actually be someone who has produced some pretty well regarded recordings with boutique mics before but just had never opened anything up and understood the electronics inside them. The assumption was that I was simply an imbissile with no idea.  It is a fact that most people sit either on the musical engineering or the electrical engineering side of this fence. I will accept that this board is unique because most experienced members can transverse both sides - but it's fair to say that most people that record music are usually on one side or the other. So back to my point - coming from a music production background I actually well understood what a U47 was, I just had not electronically understood how significant some parts were over others.  I was on one side of this fence and I was trying to cross to the other.  I am sure this was not even considered by the member who blasted me.

So this brings me to the eqilogue of my post - why am I trying to cross to the other side of the fence?  - Because I  (and I am sure my story is not different to a lot of others here) always had an interest in electronics. In the back of my mind somewhere I would have loved to have studied electrical engineering or something but I became a musician instead. When I discovered this board I was overwhelmed and so excited. It was exactly what I had been looking for and my thirst to learn meant I would spent hours here instead of attending to other things. I eagerly poured over everything I could read and I still do everyday. I learn more stuff from you guys everyday and I am truly grateful to members here whom have offered me advice.  I respect and admire you all and I wish I had your knowledge.

So perhaps this frustration to newcomers is somewhat bottled up anger at the direction of the board in general, but please dont judge all newcomers the same way. I guess the esssence of this is to say that everyone of the members here had to start somewhere.

2) "Use the Search Function"
When I built my D-LA2A I read as much as I could. I sourced all the parts I could from all over the world. Whenever I tried to use the search function here I did find it redundant to be honest. It pulled up so much information that I found it very hard to decipher and get a clear answer to what I was looking for. This was after hours or days of reading.

3) "Taking knowledge from people rather than learning yourself is bad"
I don't understand why some people see sapping of knowledge as such a terrible thing anyway. If someone were to ask me something about production I would be happy to pass on the knowledge. In fact I woud feel really good for doing so. Yet so often I do notice this reluctance and I wonder if it stems from the mentalit where he holder of knowledge feels they had to go about things the hard way and  resents somebody having an easier ride then them. Why people think this way is beyond me. I do however accept there are different people in the world. There are recording techniques I have learnt from trial and error painstakingly that I wish someone had just shown me. It would have removed so many dissapointing sessions and frustration mixes. If people were to ask me now I would gladly show them things that I agonised for years over.  But I get the impression with some people here that they resent passing this information on.

4) The Competition of making better DIY gear than others
I also feel that this board can attract people who see DIY as a competetive thing. Maybe I am being a little heavy here, and I am not suggesting even for one moment that this is even the majority of members ,but for some people it seems their only modus operandi is to show off photo completed builds of stuff to earn kudos but have little intention of helping anyone else. Perhaps this lack of help is fuelled by a need to be better builders than others and have better feel that their build skills are superior.

On a final note I really say thinks to those have have helped me. For what its worth, by DLA2A and Baby Animal are an awesome combination and I feel very good about myself for making them. Maybe to some this is nothing, but to me they were great journeys.

Kindest to everyone


Re: Being Dismissive when help is offered ...
« Reply #8 on: April 19, 2009, 11:06:14 AM »
Marty, I agree that people should give much respect to those who offer their knowledge for free. Electronic engineering can be tricky, and it takes a lot of work. You do have to sit down and study in order to understand things properly.

And here's the thing. I find most of these "clone" project threads pretty dull. The majority of it basically being people putting together paint-by-numbers kits whilst not understanding the theory of their operation. These people get nice sounding kit, and some fun constructing it. Fair enough, but I think that's missing out somewhat.

It's been said before, but I bet a lot of units constructed by some people here are out of spec. There is a big project here which has errors in the design/schematic which affect the operation of the unit, yet despite the number of people who have built them, nobody has mentioned this. I'd guess this is most likely because a lot of people either wouldn't notice, or wouldn't know how to fix these issues anyway.

I am very, very grateful for all of the discussions with the experienced members here. I've learned a lot, and it has enabled me to consider my own designs which is really satisfying. I hope that I can pass on what experience I have (which isn't massive; I'm only 25 and still learning), and I think the best way to do this is to point people towards how to solve a problem rather than giving a straight answer. Or alternatively, be vague, give answers full of holes, and make people figure things out for themselves!
Quote from: tv
punchy fat bastard chip


Re: Being Dismissive when help is offered ...
« Reply #9 on: April 19, 2009, 11:09:26 AM »
it's not sapping of knowledge , it's sapping of time
which may better be used elsewhere ? [ for other's ]

The threads could be cleaned , big a job as it is but
of course that thats time

I see no competition myself , but it's true the search function
has never been great, although learning how to get around it
may be the " lesson in patience & persistence " itself .

and some are more grumpy than others [ we all have challenging days ]
not everyone responds to every post , more what they have direct interest
and experience in .

that said i still feel better being here than the other places and exploring
the maintenace of that [ keeping the grp working ] is not a bad thing

GKB Audio / Greg Boboski


Re: Being Dismissive when help is offered ...
« Reply #10 on: April 19, 2009, 12:00:04 PM »
While i understand the point about kits, and i am obviously biased to an extent, we shouldn't have to force people to learn the electronics behind the project. When i started out in DIY electronics, I bought kits, but I had the desire to learn about what I was building and bought the kits simply because it was usually cheaper than buying a low quantity of parts from multiple sources and paying multiple shipping charges.

We're going to get paint by number people on forums like this no matter what and we're best to try and help and not get upset about it. If we don't like some of the stuff that's being posted...well, we can't simply not reply to it and it moves on down the threads and fades into obscurity.

All great resources have their pros and cons, and the pros here still far outweigh the cons.

Cheers and solder on brothers.


Re: Being Dismissive when help is offered ...
« Reply #11 on: April 19, 2009, 12:13:09 PM »
right ! better to have more resources than not , but
you don't automaticaly expect other people to support your kits

Another non black & white issue is when people want to sell their projects
which were born because of this site , trying to value their time
[ which may have taken up other people's time  here ]
 to determine a fair price

Maybe there are too many projects or new people too quickly and need to manage growth
like a business . Point being how to nurture this and keep what were have
in supporting it back to , What can we do for the grp ?

What are the unwritten rules of self regulation ?

Jakob , what are your thought's ?
« Last Edit: April 19, 2009, 12:18:40 PM by okgb »
GKB Audio / Greg Boboski


Re: Being Dismissive when help is offered ...
« Reply #12 on: April 19, 2009, 12:24:03 PM »
As the forum's base has naturally expanded and broadened, there has been a significant uptick in the number of people who just want to "do it cheap". -There's nothing intrinsically wrong with cost being a factor; for many of the longer-established forum members, this may originally have been an influence, and there's nothing wrong with that per se; -It's a powerful/helpful motivator.

But the CORE ethos here is learning and expanding one's abilities... Not ripping off designs which command a high price in the market.

There's been at least one recent thread which springs to mind, where the poster made it clear that they didn't care about learning how to build things, they just wanted something for cheaper than its legitimate purchase price.

This is NOT in tune with the forum's core ethos. In some cases, the original posters have expressed irritation when others have declined to give their time and efforts for free, and this is plainly NOT an acceptable state of affairs.  -I recently read an article about the "piratebay" convictions, where the 'comments' section made me despair for the general public attitude to Intellectual Property.

The comments appear to indicate that an overwhelming proportion of people simply don't value 'ownership rights' and see wholesale replication and distribution as "not a crime". I despair.

Now we've all copied things, but in order to build things you HAVE to have a design to work from, and it's natural to choose a design which works particularly well... -specially if  it's manageable. -But that's only tolerable as a MEANS TO AN END... the furthering of understanding, for example... or the DEVELOPMENT or IMPROVEMENT of a design.

It's like 'feeding' versus 'leeching'. Some here contribute, though not everyone can. Others here LEARN. But those who arrive with a declaration that they just want something cheap and don't want to learn anything, appear to me to be purely leeching.

Ive tried to "feed" with my one or two original designs, I've also come up with a 'development' or two and a couple of handy PCB designs right from data sheets... but there are others who contribute much more. -I know that over the years we've lost contributors because of an eventual disappointment, or a feeling of being taken for granted.

I think that if anyone is truly here to learn, that's one thing, but it can be difficult identifying those who don't care about the field... and are here simply to 'take'.

"A waist is a terrible thing to mind"
Quote from: PRR
Ah, but that was 1999; we don't party like that any more.


Re: Being Dismissive when help is offered ...
« Reply #13 on: April 19, 2009, 12:31:17 PM »
Is this site that we love not technically guilty of "pirating"?


Re: Being Dismissive when help is offered ...
« Reply #14 on: April 19, 2009, 12:33:52 PM »
at times yes, the fact that certain items go under the radar states that.
Are you professionally stupid, or just a gifted amateur.

Iain Westland (UK)


Re: Being Dismissive when help is offered ...
« Reply #15 on: April 19, 2009, 12:43:49 PM »
Yeah, there's a really fine line isn't there?

Anyway, let's get back to building and learning and not worry about the rest.



Re: Being Dismissive when help is offered ...
« Reply #16 on: April 19, 2009, 12:50:48 PM »

I keep thinking about doing an article on a piece of equipment from a newbies perspective, not only where the bits go but what those bits are doing as well...


As a newbie, and someone who has successfully built a few things i would LOVE this. For example, as simple as how a balanced input and or output section works, what the little caps do, what the resistors are doing, what the OP AMP actually does. I just learned what a Bypass Cap does. and SMACKED myself so hard my cat came out with asprin. i THINK I MAY KNOW what these devices are doing but i cant speak with any authority on it cause i really dont know and have just been guessing based on context.

The only thing i seem to be able to do well is power supplies. but they are fairly simple compared to the stuff we generally get up to.

Sorry, tangent finished, Press on!


Re: Being Dismissive when help is offered ...
« Reply #17 on: April 19, 2009, 12:54:17 PM »
Following on from what Rody posted about learning, I have several projects "on the go" and I'll taking my time, not just
because my free time is limited but I want to know "what makes the project tic" as well.
EG: Had my D-AOC mains transformer chucking out about 300v because we have approx 248v AC here
in the South of England ..... it was too high for the regulators to cope with. ( traffo expects German 220v AC )

A little reading and a bit of ohms law and I had a 1k 25 watt resistor after the transformer giving me a much
more healthy 250v at the board and regulators.
A required "mod" and a bit more info in my "noggin" !!

"Success is the ability to go from one failure to another with no loss of enthusiasm"


Re: Being Dismissive when help is offered ...
« Reply #18 on: April 19, 2009, 12:58:38 PM »
...hour on the desk is about the same as a week in a book to me...

As an offical 'noob' and guilty of asking some ridiculously lame questions, I say +1 to the above!
Each piece I finish, leads me to learn more and more at a seemingly exponential rate.
The one thing being schuffled off helps me do, is send me back to the research.
Also, by becoming a member here and building some of these amazing projects, I have
had to seek out a tech guru near by who has schooled me through the 'idiocy' phase of my
electrical engineering self-education.

Personally, whether someone is helpful or downright insulting, I really appreciate everything about this community.

As a final note in RE: to this thread as a whole, Please read my signature.

Thank you all again for the wealth of information...
I'll apologize in advance


Re: Being Dismissive when help is offered ...
« Reply #19 on: April 19, 2009, 01:01:50 PM »
in response to 'Thecheat'

yea, i've built a few things and wondered why they work, trouble is we would need the big boys to play nice and stay on topic, but some of the guys here can state what it will sound like based on a napkin, so getting them to keep it simple and direct for us not clevers is a feat in its self.

I dont mind being the sacrificial lamb here, never been afraid to ask stupid question, and maybe it could help others understand the means as well as the where for of the circuits.

Are you professionally stupid, or just a gifted amateur.

Iain Westland (UK)


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