Complaint about the new forum

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May 30, 2008
42
0
#1
I must say I *hate* the following aspects of the new forum:

1) It is impossible for me to have e-mail delivered to a different address
than that from which I send it.

2) My quoting is taken over and replaced by the forum with stupid additional
lines reading "---Quote---" and "---End Quote---". Why??

3) My single e-mail apparently resulted in two posts.

4) A tag with a number that is meaningless to me is inserted into the
subject line of every post. This seems in some cases to cause Outlook's
admittedly deficient conversation threading to fail, splitting conversations
into multiple groups.

5) The forum software completely ignores my full name in the "From" field
and replaces it with my forum username.

While there may have been problems with SparkList.com, this new system
doesn't feel like an improvement to me.

Jonathan Gilbert_
\\\ / / / \ |_) |_/
\\\/ \/ \__/ | \ | \
Software Systems
 
May 30, 2008
42
0
#2
From: logic
Sent: Wednesday, June 04, 2008 2:47 PM
Subject: Complaint about the new forum

>
> I must say I *hate* the following aspects of the new forum:
[snip]

I also want to mention that I think moving all of the wiki content to a
forum format is a *bad* idea. A wiki retains all of the prior history but
permits the information to be viewed in a formatted, structured way. It
allows many people's changes to be combined into a single page. It can
present a much cleaner and professional view of information. I don't know
what the problems are with the wiki, but I personally wouldn't ever consider
making a change like that for this kind of information ("tips and tricks").

Jonathan Gilbert_
\\\ / / / \ |_) |_/
\\\/ \/ \__/ | \ | \
Software Systems
 

rconn

Administrator
Staff member
May 14, 2008
10,096
85
#3
logic wrote:

> I must say I *hate* the following aspects of the new forum:
>
> 1) It is impossible for me to have e-mail delivered to a different address
> than that from which I send it.
Why would you want to do that? You can't do that with the old forum
either, and I've never seen a forum that *did* support that.


> 2) My quoting is taken over and replaced by the forum with stupid additional
> lines reading "---Quote---" and "---End Quote---". Why??
That is dependent on your email format. (If you choose html, you don't
see it.)


> 3) My single e-mail apparently resulted in two posts.
I've not seen that -- unless you've subscribed both to the threads and
to the forum?


> 4) A tag with a number that is meaningless to me is inserted into the
> subject line of every post. This seems in some cases to cause Outlook's
> admittedly deficient conversation threading to fail, splitting conversations
> into multiple groups.
That tag is necessary to allow the threading in the web forum. I'm
using Thunderbird and it seems to thread everything nicely there.


> 5) The forum software completely ignores my full name in the "From" field
> and replaces it with my forum username.
WAD -- do you really want your full name (and potentially email address)
to be sent to everybody?


> While there may have been problems with SparkList.com, this new system
> doesn't feel like an improvement to me.
There are a LOT more problems with SparkList than are generally known;
this new system is a vast improvement from the administrative end.

Rex Conn
JP Software
 

rconn

Administrator
Staff member
May 14, 2008
10,096
85
#4
logic wrote:


> I also want to mention that I think moving all of the wiki content to a
> forum format is a *bad* idea. A wiki retains all of the prior history but
> permits the information to be viewed in a formatted, structured way. It
> allows many people's changes to be combined into a single page. It can
> present a much cleaner and professional view of information. I don't know
> what the problems are with the wiki, but I personally wouldn't ever consider
> making a change like that for this kind of information ("tips and tricks").
The problems with the Wiki are (1) nobody's using it, because (2) it's
too complicated, and (3) unless you browse it constantly you'll never
know if there's anything new and/or interesting there, and (4) it's a
spam honey pot. (Almost all of the new entries are spam; Charles has to
spend way too much time constantly removing them.)

Rex Conn
JP Software
 
May 30, 2008
42
0
#5
From: rconn
Sent: Wednesday, June 04, 2008 4:07 PM
Subject: RE: [Support-t-130] Complaint about the new forum

>
> logic wrote:
> > I must say I *hate* the following aspects of the new forum:
> >
> > 1) It is impossible for me to have e-mail delivered to a different
> > address than that from which I send it.
>
> Why would you want to do that? You can't do that with the old forum
> either, and I've never seen a forum that *did* support that.
I was under the impression that I've been doing that for years with the old
forum. Perhaps I am confused there.


> > 2) My quoting is taken over and replaced by the forum with stupid
> > additional lines reading "---Quote---" and "---End Quote---". Why??
>
> That is dependent on your email format. (If you choose html, you don't
> see it.)
But then I lose the ability to thread replies into the quoted response as I
am doing right now, do I not?


> > 3) My single e-mail apparently resulted in two posts.
>
> I've not seen that -- unless you've subscribed both to the threads and
> to the forum?
It was apparently a one-off thing for me. I've made several posts since and
they only showed up once. However, I have seen duplicate posts from other
members...


> > 4) A tag with a number that is meaningless to me is inserted into the
> > subject line of every post. This seems in some cases to cause Outlook's
> > admittedly deficient conversation threading to fail, splitting
> > conversations into multiple groups.
>
> That tag is necessary to allow the threading in the web forum. I'm
> using Thunderbird and it seems to thread everything nicely there.
Well, I'm not using Thunderbird. Are you suggesting I should reorganize my
entire mail reading habits to accommodate the shortcomings of the new forum
system? I don't understand why the outbound e-mails to me must have that tag
in the subject line. Can't the forum system use the "References" field for
threading like Thunderbird does (and like Outlook manifestly does not)?

The forum system is in PHP, so it is obviously amenable to site-specific
changes.


> > 5) The forum software completely ignores my full name in the "From"
> > field and replaces it with my forum username.
>
> WAD -- do you really want your full name (and potentially email address)
> to be sent to everybody?
If I put it as the source in what I am sending out, doesn't that imply that
I'm okay with other people seeing it? In any event, I'm not particularly
worried about the e-mail address. I send "Jonathan Gilbert", and I sign my
e-mails with "Jonathan Gilbert", and everyone else sees posts from "logic".
Unless I can put spaces into a forum username, there is no way for me to be
"Jonathan Gilbert".


> > While there may have been problems with SparkList.com, this new system
> > doesn't feel like an improvement to me.
>
> There are a LOT more problems with SparkList than are generally known;
> this new system is a vast improvement from the administrative end.
I can believe that. By far the single most positive advantage that I
personally would find, as a programmer, is the ability to make changes to
the list code.

Jonathan Gilbert_
\\\ / / / \ |_) |_/
\\\/ \/ \__/ | \ | \
Software Systems
 
May 30, 2008
42
0
#6
From: rconn
Sent: Wednesday, June 04, 2008 4:23 PM
Subject: RE: [Support-t-130] Complaint about the new forum

>
> The problems with the Wiki are (1) nobody's using it, because (2) it's
> too complicated, and (3) unless you browse it constantly you'll never
> know if there's anything new and/or interesting there, and (4) it's a
> spam honey pot. (Almost all of the new entries are spam; Charles has to
> spend way too much time constantly removing them.)
The complexity issues, at least from my personal experience setting up a
Wiki within my own company, are mostly a matter of education. I don't just
mean teaching people how to use the Wiki, but also teaching people that they
don't personally have to get it perfect and polished. If they can't figure
out the Wiki codes, that's *okay*; they can put the data in unformatted and
someone else who has the time and interest can easily reformat it later.
Better to have the data in some form than to not have it at all.

The MediaWiki software can be made to deliver RSS feeds. If that is not a
nice, usable format for casual readers, the code is readily extensible and
could without a lot of effort be made to display a user-friend version of
the "Recent Changes" special page.

As for dealing with spam, an invitational system for signing up for accounts
should completely eliminate the problem. The only problem with this
suggestion is that as far as I know, nobody has at this point added that
functionality to MediaWiki. However, I wouldn't be averse to doing it.
Basically, if the only way to get an account is to be invited by a friend,
then the only way spam will end up on the wiki is if someone's account is
compromised. If that *does* happen, even if the spammer is smart and figures
out the invitation system (which would require an attack specially targeting
your wiki, since no others would have this particular invitational system),
you can simply prune the entire subtree of users by invitation and thereby
eliminate all accounts set up for spamming in one go.

I strongly feel that the advantages of the wiki presentation outweigh the
disadvantages, and the issues you have mentioned can be worked around
without requiring a full-time job training people and cleaning up after
miscreants.

Jonathan Gilbert_
\\\ / / / \ |_) |_/
\\\/ \/ \__/ | \ | \
Software Systems
 

rconn

Administrator
Staff member
May 14, 2008
10,096
85
#7
logic wrote:


> Quote:
> > > 2) My quoting is taken over and replaced by the forum with stupid
> > > additional lines reading "---Quote---" and "---End Quote---". Why??
> >
> > That is dependent on your email format. (If you choose html, you don't
> > see it.)
>
> But then I lose the ability to thread replies into the quoted response as I
> am doing right now, do I not?
No; I'm doing it with html.


> Quote:
> > > 4) A tag with a number that is meaningless to me is inserted into the
> > > subject line of every post. This seems in some cases to cause Outlook's
> > > admittedly deficient conversation threading to fail, splitting
> > > conversations into multiple groups.
> >
> > That tag is necessary to allow the threading in the web forum. I'm
> > using Thunderbird and it seems to thread everything nicely there.
>
> Well, I'm not using Thunderbird. Are you suggesting I should reorganize my
> entire mail reading habits to accommodate the shortcomings of the new forum
> system?
No, I'm saying that at least OE and Thunderbird have no problems with
it. I'm not using Outlook, so I can't make any comments about that.

Anybody else using Outlook and experiencing threading problems?

Rex Conn
JP Software