Sunday, November 25

Thoughts on Instructables -- Administration

Instructables is an interesting community, and although I've only been a member for 15 months or so, I've seen some very intersesting things that really stick out. So, I'm going to deticate a few posts on thier society.

For one, thier admins actually care about the site and its members. Its probably because Instructables is a company, but either way they care. When I, and a few other members approached them on updating their FAQ, we were very nervous. However, they responded whole-hartedly, saying that they would actually develop anything that we needed. This contrasts other places I've been, where they've not only ignored offerings to help their problems, but then punish me for trying to fix them (usually by greasemonkey)

Greasemonkey scripts are actually handled very intrestingly at Instructables, not only do they not try to fix their webpages to "break" the scripts, they embrace Greasemonkey scripts by 3rd parties... its a beautiful thing.

What's really great is seeing the admins actually participate on the site casually, like normal members. For instance, the CEO posted about how he broke his glasses, and wanted opinions on what pair he should get. Not to mention the 100's of projects they've all posted over the years.

I have a lot more rambling to do on them... thier problems will come next.

Saturday, November 24

Am I back for real now?

I've stuck this blog icon on my toolbar, so hopefully I will remember to blog now! :D

...but... will I?

Friday, June 22

Ahh! 1.5 hours left to post!!!

Well, I said I'm gonna post everyday, so I am. And I'm not going to use that post-ahead feature for at least 2 weeks.

Its 10:30, so I better write.

I was just reading someones blog where they're criticizing a forum I go to thats in an odd spot. Basically, their "product" has died, but there are some people still coming in, I'd say 20 a day. These people are wanting to use a similar product, and trying to take over the site.

Its quite annoying, personally. Since its high up in Google, theres tons of spam. This means that moderation is a hot-button issue. The product is also mostly child-oriented, causing 1/2 the site to be immature, and needing more moderation to keep it safe for young'ins. Theres also very few people fit for the moderator job.

I think its going to collapse. I really do. Its bloated out too much feature-wise, and it was hand-coded, so I feel bad.

Most vet's are only around for friends, which would make it easy to just switch to a standard site. I'm trying to help by moving people along to my site, but its really slow.

They're a sinking ship. They should stop.

Thursday, June 21

Spam Perverntion on Forums

Most forums have problems with spammers. I assume once bbCommunity starts rolling, it will have its fair share. However, I wanted to share thoughts on how to stop spammers. These aren't proven, but they would have stopped 90% of spam I've seen.

1. Captchas : These are those annoying little things where you have to type in the random letters on the disco background. Although these will stop bots, they will annoy your users like crazy. To prevent it, I'd do it one every 5 posts for new users, once every 10 posts for older users, and always for a new thread. If you do, use , you type in 2 words that were scanned in and could not be read by the computer. 1 of them has a known answer from previous checks. As people use this, they help digitize books.

2. Flood Control. I hate this entirely, but it works. If your site is bad enough to need it, please, for the love of freedom, ONLY LIMIT THREADS! If you limit posts per hour, I will hunt you down.

3. Better Filter: Try removing spaces and such before filtering. You'll probably have to program something, but it will get a lot of the "da mn"'s on your forum.

Personally, I'm going to let people swear on my site, but only use words on a "list". Each person sets a "vulgarity level" to filter out which words they don't want to see.

I'm back!

Okay, sorry for leaving you guys for over a month, but I'm back! I should continue to post semi-daily from now on, considering I'm out of school and I have nothing better to do :P

Saturday, May 19

Sorry for not posting today or yesterday...

Sorry for not posting recently, I don't feel all that great. On top of it I'm trying to suck up to my little bro who will be getting the Wii...


Thursday, May 17

How to make a Forum-based Community

I've been thinking about it, and theres no real way to quickly make a community, like I've been trying to do.

1.You actually have to do a lot more.
First, you have to come up with some idea, say a new piece of software, or a video-game forum. Just something that will cause people to come.

2.Then, as you do this, people will start to FLOOD! You may think "Wow! This is awesome!", but it isn't. You're forum needs to trim the fat. Theres spammers and n00bish d00ds. 

3.Luckily, about now, your product is dying. This may seem bad, but its the best thing that happened! Those n00bish d00ds are leaving, as they really don't care about people. Everyone's forced through a "sieve", only the people who have friends are left.

4.Now your product is dead. And voila! You have a community.

A clever analogy is this: To make caremel, you need to add water to the sugar so it can melt, but you need boil it away after or the caremel will be bad. 

I guess I'm trying to cheat, and I've seen places on step 3 that are trying as best they can to achieve 4 without destroying thing.

Just my thoughs (and Nin10dudes :D)