Too many boards perhaps...

ProgMan

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Hi everybody,

I'm a newbie here and this is my very first post here so I hope nobody gets me wrong by this post.

First, a bit about myself. I am moving to .NET programming (VB.NET to be perfect with some database stuff...both Access and MYSQL) and I've joined this forum as I believe (after spending some good time on google) this forum will be able to help me best :) .

But, I think this forum has way too many boards and for a newbie like me its certainly overwhelming and scary. The Admins/Mods probably have their own opinions and justifications for making so many boards. But I feel it creates more confusion as there are always (and will be) a lot of questions which can belong to more than one board.

So, I think combining some boards will not only make this forum look better and neat & tidy but also it will help to get better responses to questions from other users.

Any thoughts shared on this would be much appreciated :)
 

JohnH

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If you want to help out or seek help about specifics it makes it easier for you when you can target more specific topics and forums. There are only 13 main sections here, each divided further to just a few main forums. The search facility can spawn all or particular forums. There is also the list of Todays posts from main menu Quick Links, helpful for getting to todays threads without need to look into all or many forums. It is true that a request may fit several forums, but try to think about what really is the problem to be solved.
 

ProgMan

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If you want to help out or seek help about specifics it makes it easier for you when you can target more specific topics and forums.

Thank you JohnH for your reply. I actually understand what you mean by that and I tend to agree with you with the concept. However, I think the main question lies upon "To what extent you keep dividing the problem?"

For example, I can agree when it comes to posting a question.

But the problem I see is when answering to any thread. A member can help with different kinds of problems. But its gonna take a lot of time (until s/he looses patience :D ) for someone to go through so many boards to check new threads (and remember that each board may have more than one new topics).

But anyway, I was just giving my opinions and feelings about the whole thing. So, it doesn't necessarily mean that I'm right :rolleyes:

(BTY, I was pretty much lost among those boards when I first discovered the forum and to be honest I still haven't find my way quite yet :eek: )
 

JohnH

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If you start new or answer a thread you are subscribed to it and will receive email notification about new posts. Also, clicking main menu 'User CP' lists your own subscribed threads.
 

ProgMan

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Hi,

Well, personally I always disable the e-mail notification mode as I participate in a number of forums and don't want my mailbox getting full of notifications as I always like to visit my forums and check new posts even if I haven't participated in any thread at that time. Also, I am aware of the other method you mentioned. But, I was talking about some ideas that could make this forum a liitle more neat & tidy. You must've known that along with functionalities, the design of interface and ease of use is another important concern.

I've noticed that although we have a huge number of registered users, the participation is extremely low and this surprises me very much which IMO shouldn't be the case for such a forum. So, perhaps the admins/mods sneed to think about the whole thing again.

But, as a new member of the forum, I don't want to sound too cocky. :D

So, that's it for me on this issue for the time being.

Good bye! :)
 

JuggaloBrotha

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participation will grow as the base user's grow, people are joining every day, this is expected when a forum is still growing.

the thing i've been noticing most is: people will register, ask 1 question (usually because they have homework for their vb.net college class) then never have a need to come back. my guess is that they need help with 1 or 2 homework assignments then drop the whole programming interest or they're only in the programming class thinking it's easier than the other computer class and they don't have nay interesting in programming at all (just using it as an easy way out)

that's what i've been noticing, we could almost do some membership clean up around here, cancel the registration of all the members who've only posted 2 or 3 times (homework posts) and who havent posted within the last 12 months, this way the participation will seem to have increased
 

ProgMan

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I agree with you JuggaloBrotha on the type of people you are talking about. However, you will see these kinda people on any online forum. They come, ask a question or two, then leave it until they have an another question. Its nothing abnormal until they become the majority in any forum.

Personally, I've seen that, a forum becomes more active when the members feel closer to it. So, even after having their questions answered, they feel the urge to come back because it becomes like a bond. For example, personally I visit a number of forums a couple of times (each) everyday because I feel homely with those and feel like a being a part of a big family . I try to visit most of the boards on the forum to see what others a talking about. One of the reason for this is the ease of using the forum, visual clean & tidiness of the forum and active participation of the admins/mods and some other regular memebers. Many times a member is participating in a thread even though s/he does not know the specific answer but atleast expressing his/her opinion on the problem and giving suggestions or showing directions to other sources.

Information alone is not enough for attracting users. For example, think of the microsoft website. It has tons of information regarding its products. It has different sections for different products, a search engine to search for a specific solution etc. But even then users specially novices (and others too!) tend to go and put his question in a forum. So, here you see the facilities (like the search engine) is not coming into any good. This is what I am trying to say about this forum. I feel that its not particularly very easy to scroll through so many boards and thats why I'm not trying to do that which in turn limiting my chance of participation.

But again that's only me & my silly thoughts...:D
 

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I appreciate everyone's feedback. I'm a strong believer in "if you raise a problem, present a solution." So I'm all ears in how you think this board should change. Please provide specifics: Merges, adds, deletions, etc.
 

ProgMan

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I appreciate everyone's feedback. I'm a strong believer in "if you raise a problem, present a solution." So I'm all ears in how you think this board should change. Please provide specifics: Merges, adds, deletions, etc.

Hmmm...:rolleyes:

I don't believe that whoever raises a problem will also have a solution too. That's why we vote in the general elections so that they can sort out our (and their's too!) messes. :D

Anyway, give me a few days, let me explore and understand this forum a bit more and then hopefully I'll be able to give my opinions on some possible solutions. :)

Thanks and bye for now.


N.B. For the time being I'm gonna send you (Neal) a pm with the links of two of the forums I participate on. Perhaps, that will give you an idea about my personal views.
 

JohnH

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"We" would be interested those two links as well, that's what we're discussing here in this thread. Several of the older,bigger,established forum sites I know spawn many programming languages and often only provide one or a handfull forums for each language. Although some may feel that putting everything regarding VB.Net or C# or C++ into a single forum is tidy, I don't think that's clean, that's just sweeping the dust under the carpet.

This site is dedicated to VB.Net only and consequently wishes to provide a tidy forum interface to the main matters of this language. I'm not saying how this site is organized is perfect, I sometimes have thoughts about changes too, but in some views the current layout is really simple with it's few main programming sections:

- VB.Net
- ASP.Net
- Compact Framework
- Database
- Component/Controls

The sub-forums of these sections are logically divided to the main categories relevant to each. Except for the 'General' forum there is almost no overlapping in main subject.

The other sections are not used much currently and do have a more loose tint to them, being more subject to what surrounds programming.

I mentioned thoughts of changes, and in my opinion most notably the Graphics forum currently in VS section should be moved to VB section.
 

BadgerByte

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Just my two cents regarding the level of forum activity...
Although the number of registered users : activity level seems small, practically speaking I've not found another VB.Net specific forum where answers or pointers are received as quickly as on this one. Try checking the "New posts" at about 10:00am, you'll find very few that haven't already been answered. Although there will always be relatively empty sections, with .Net being such a mammoth beast this is very helpful for searching. I think these forums have become a remarkably complete and much appreciated resource over the last few years!
 

ProgMan

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Hi again...

I've sent a pm to Neal and JohnH with the links I promised earlier.

Now, as Christmas holiday is approaching, I'm getting quite busy with my work as I have a number of assignments to be completed before the holiday. So, I won't be able to spend much time on this issue for the time being. That's why, I've had a quick look at the forum and picked one of the easier ones. Here's the partial screenshot of this forum where I think you can merge the forums.


Personally, I think its not necessay to have forums for each type of books specially on the main page. You can have one board/forum in the main page (Books / Reading List / whatever) then then have subforums for each type of books if you want within that board/ forum.

if you like the idea, then tou can try similar things with the other ones too.

Bye for now.:)

Progman
 

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Administrator

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ProgMan - got your PM, go ahead and post the sites you provided me here, it does not harm, there is no competition among forums, people can go where they wish.

JohnH:

I mentioned thoughts of changes, and in my opinion most notably the Graphics forum currently in VS section should be moved to VB section.

Good suggestion, thanks!
 

ProgMan

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ProgMan - got your PM, go ahead and post the sites you provided me here, it does not harm, there is no competition among forums, people can go where they wish.

I gave you the links via pm so that it helps you understand what I've been trying to say only.

The main reason I am against posting those links here is because others may start criticizing those which I believe won't be fair to those forums as they have nothing to do here.

Hope you understand.

Thank you and bye for now :)
 

TechGnome

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Meanwhile the rest of us are out in the cold on how they are organized. And so can't offer an opinion one way or the other.

-tg
 

JuggaloBrotha

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if www.vbforums.com is listed, IMHO that site isn't close to as organized as this site is, but i'm a member there too (so is jmcilhinney)
 

vis781

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At the end of the day this, like many others, is an open forum. People are free to come and go as they please. It is rare for a question not to get an answer on these forums. I like the way it is organised, specific sections for specific questions. Can you imagine how hard it would be to find out how to spell something in a dictionary if it wasn't in alphabetical order? It is encouraged here for everyone to get involved without fear of reprisal if the answer isn't 100% correct. It's the taking part that counts, hence the title.... 'community'.
 

bearle

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:) So far, I like the organization of the forums. However, I have a suggetion. The reporting/printing under components/controls unfortunately mixes crystal reports responses with the new 2005 reportviewer control. Even though I have gone to the reportviewer web page http://www.gotreportviewer.com/, I have a need for replies to things like using mulitiple subreports in a webform that is difficult to find using search technology since many results are for the more widely used crystal products.

Splitting out those posts that apply to Crystal (or for my purposes, splitting out those that are specific to the newer reportviewer control :) ) would be very helpful.
 

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Splitting out those posts that apply to Crystal (or for my purposes, splitting out those that are specific to the newer reportviewer control :) ) would be very helpful.

Thanks for the feedback Bearle. The goal is not to have a forum dedicated to a product such as Crystal, so "reporting/printing" is meant to cover all "output" type options such as the title implies.
 

bearle

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While the intent may be to have all types of reporting in this thread, the reality is that over 90% of the posts relate to Crystal, making this particular forum especially difficult for those searching for something other than Crystal responses.

The intent was fine, it just turns out that the interest in Crystal outdoes the rest of the issues, hence the need for separating crystal from the rest. It would make life simpler for both the majority (crystal) and the minority (the rest).
 
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