Author Topic: New Off Topic Hobbies Section  (Read 4087 times)

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Offline EEVblog

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New Off Topic Hobbies Section
« on: January 29, 2021, 10:14:52 pm »
It was suggested that an Off Topic Hobbies section be created for those that like the community here, but want to discuss other hobbies they have and want to discuss with other like minded people they already know here.
I don't see the problem with the idea, but please leave your thoughts, and suggestion for other catgeories you would like. e.g. it could be wood working, metalworking, books, 3D printing, whatever.
It's down the very bottom of the forum main page for obvious reasons.

NOTE: This is NOT the free-for-all general chat section some people want, the usual rules about politics, religion, guns, covid apply, and other off-topic stuff that gets nasty real fast.
You might also notice the General Chat section has been relabed General Technical Chat.
 
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Offline Ed.Kloonk

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Re: New Off Topic Hobbies Section
« Reply #1 on: January 29, 2021, 10:24:47 pm »
+1

There are times when I notice users with very low post count get a little overwhelmed with responses to their beginner questions. It might be helpful for some of them to show off what they are good at so as to break the ice so to speak.

 

Offline tggzzz

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Re: New Off Topic Hobbies Section
« Reply #2 on: January 29, 2021, 10:27:32 pm »
Dont do it!

If I want to discuss bicycles or gliding, I go to bicycle or gliding forums.

It is better to do one thing well than two things poorly.

When living in Cambridge and I wanted a tool, I went to MacKays. If they had it, great, if not I hadn't wasted much time.

Living in Brizzle there are many shops that might (and often don't) have the tool. I have to waste time going to see several on the off chance they have it.
« Last Edit: January 29, 2021, 10:31:15 pm by tggzzz »
There are lies, damned lies, statistics - and ADC/DAC specs.
Glider pilot's aphorism: "there is no substitute for span". Retort: "There is a substitute: skill+imagination. But you can buy span".
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Offline CatalinaWOW

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Re: New Off Topic Hobbies Section
« Reply #3 on: January 29, 2021, 11:05:38 pm »
I think the real question might be:  Why is the environment on this forum more appealing than others? 

If it is simply the rule set then those interested in other topics can borrow the rules and either start their own forum, or point out the benefits of the rule set to one or more existing forums.

If it is a reflection of the moderators I would think seriously about whether the moderators are interested in taking on what would likely grow into additional members who were more focused on the added topics.  (Of course the added members should translate into additional revenue so there is both a stick and a carrot).

If it is just a reflection that like minded people flock together it might just make sense as a community service.  The existence of much less congenial EE forums elsewhere on the web suggests there may be something to this possibility.

I am sure those in the business of running this can come up with other theories.  And of course because this is real life, not some homework problem, the answer is undoubtedly a mixture of all of them.  But it is probably a good way of thinking about the problem.
 

Offline tggzzz

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Re: New Off Topic Hobbies Section
« Reply #4 on: January 29, 2021, 11:20:13 pm »
Is there an automated way in which I can never see any of the posts from would-be Nigella Lawsons (or Graham Kerrs)?

In other words, I don't want the Cooking stuff to appear in my "unread" and "unreadreplies" pages.
There are lies, damned lies, statistics - and ADC/DAC specs.
Glider pilot's aphorism: "there is no substitute for span". Retort: "There is a substitute: skill+imagination. But you can buy span".
Having fun doing more, with less
 

Offline Ysjoelfir

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Re: New Off Topic Hobbies Section
« Reply #5 on: January 29, 2021, 11:25:43 pm »
I realy love the idea! The atmosphere here is just so nice, as is the way people tend to discuss. I am very looking forward to have this atmosphere in other topics not related to electronics as well.

I personally would love to see categories for wood- and metalworking as well as literature besides the already existing cooking section which I appreciate also very much.
Greetings, Kai \ Ysjoelfir
 

Offline Ed.Kloonk

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Re: New Off Topic Hobbies Section
« Reply #6 on: January 29, 2021, 11:33:46 pm »
Is there an automated way in which I can never see any of the posts from would-be Nigella Lawsons (or Graham Kerrs)?

In other words, I don't want the Cooking stuff to appear in my "unread" and "unreadreplies" pages.

Does Forum Profile> Ignore Board Options  not work to your liking?

Quote
This page lets you ignore particular boards. When a board is ignored, the new post indicator will not show up on the board index. New posts will not show up using the "unread post" search link (when searching it will not look in those boards) however, ignored boards will still appear on the board index and upon entering will show which topics have new posts. When using the "unread replies" link, new posts in an ignored board will still be shown.
 

Offline Halcyon

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Re: New Off Topic Hobbies Section
« Reply #7 on: January 29, 2021, 11:37:29 pm »
I think the real question might be:  Why is the environment on this forum more appealing than others? 

I think I can answer that and this is purely my own anecdotal experience and what I've heard from others.

This forum attracts a fairly specialised group of people, compared to the general population. People here generally seem to be more intelligent, coherent and more open to differing ideas than others. It's certainly not the type of forum where bored housewives come to bitch about things or people with huge egos come to troll. I've seen forums such as the Australian Whirlpool forum spiral out of control, it used to be dedicated to just telco and now, you can discuss all manner of topics there from people losing their driving licences to consumer law and everything in between. It has become a shit-show of over moderation and people basically arguing with each other. Basically, Whirlpool (or Whingepool as it's commonly known) has basically reached the point where if a moderator takes issue with you personally or disagrees with your opinion, they just delete your posts. Their forum rules alone spans pages and pages yet are inconsistently applied depending on which moderator you get and which way the wind is blowing, it's not conducive to a nice environment.

To quote figures, they have almost 900k members and over 40 active moderators. EEVblog has almost 53k members and 2 active moderators. Yet very few posts that are not spam get removed and I'd like to think people are generally quite content here.

The idea of the off-topic section was mine (I wanted a section dedicated to cooking as it's one of the topics often discussed in the EEVblog IRC channel). But it's not designed to attract non-EE people to the forum, rather to complement the hobbies and interests of those who are primarily interested in tech/EE/computing but also have other interests. Some people like being members of discreet forums and that's fine, I personally don't.

« Last Edit: January 29, 2021, 11:39:20 pm by Halcyon »
 
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Offline ataradov

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Re: New Off Topic Hobbies Section
« Reply #8 on: January 29, 2021, 11:44:08 pm »
Not a fan of this. I read the forum though RSS, and it get everything. Could not care less about cooking.

It would be nice to have technical stuff only RSS feed, but I guess that's a pipe dream.

Wow, two posts and already annoying. Hopefully it just dies over time over the lack of interest.

This is indeed a good forum for EE. Why make it worse by adding random unrelated stuff?
« Last Edit: January 29, 2021, 11:53:43 pm by ataradov »
Alex
 
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Offline Bud

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Re: New Off Topic Hobbies Section
« Reply #9 on: January 29, 2021, 11:54:41 pm »
I do not want that. :--
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Offline beanflying

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Re: New Off Topic Hobbies Section
« Reply #10 on: January 29, 2021, 11:55:23 pm »
It was suggested that an Off Topic Hobbies section be created for those that like the community here, but want to discuss other hobbies they have and want to discuss with other like minded people they already know here.
I don't see the problem with the idea, but please leave your thoughts, and suggestion for other catgeories you would like. e.g. it could be wood working, metalworking, books, 3D printing, whatever.
It's down the very bottom of the forum main page for obvious reasons.

NOTE: This is NOT the free-for-all general chat section some people want, the usual rules about politics, religion, guns, covid apply, and other off-topic stuff that gets nasty real fast.
You might also notice the General Chat section has been relabed General Technical Chat.

If you pick off a few of the topics you suggest they are actually Mechanical Engineering so maybe more a narrow section catering for Mech Eng topics that have Electronic applications. So CNC, 3D Printing, Metal working these already come up a fair bit and get lumped into the General or Beginners Sections normally so a home makes some sense for these.

We don't need a cooking/cycling/coffee/fishing section much as I would likely join in  :)
Coffee, Food, R/C and electronics nerd in no particular order. Also CNC wannabe, 3D printer and Laser Cutter Junkie and just don't mention my TEA addiction....
 

Offline ataradov

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Re: New Off Topic Hobbies Section
« Reply #11 on: January 29, 2021, 11:56:47 pm »
Yes, on the other hand mechanical engineering/physics/chemistry/math would be way more interesting.
Alex
 
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Offline Ysjoelfir

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Re: New Off Topic Hobbies Section
« Reply #12 on: January 30, 2021, 12:14:12 am »
I always wonder when people complain about topics they don't like - well, then just don't take a look at them. There are other people who do like and enjoy it, so...  :-//
Greetings, Kai \ Ysjoelfir
 

Offline ataradov

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Re: New Off Topic Hobbies Section
« Reply #13 on: January 30, 2021, 12:15:37 am »
Specifically for me, reading the forum though RSS reader, there is no way to exclude them, so I have to see them if I want to see other stuff.
Alex
 

Offline Ed.Kloonk

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Re: New Off Topic Hobbies Section
« Reply #14 on: January 30, 2021, 12:19:17 am »
Specifically for me, reading the forum though RSS reader, there is no way to exclude them, so I have to see them if I want to see other stuff.

?

You've got more control than your realize. Mock up a script to read the rss.
 
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Offline Ysjoelfir

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Re: New Off Topic Hobbies Section
« Reply #15 on: January 30, 2021, 12:24:03 am »
Specifically for me, reading the forum though RSS reader, there is no way to exclude them, so I have to see them if I want to see other stuff.
?

You've got more control than your realize. Mock up a script to read the rss.

I just wanted to say exactly that. I did exactly that just by using code snippets I collected through google (I am not a coding person) back in the days when RSS feeds were big. Was no big deal and made it very easy to filter out stuff I wasn't interested in.
Greetings, Kai \ Ysjoelfir
 

Offline ataradov

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Re: New Off Topic Hobbies Section
« Reply #16 on: January 30, 2021, 12:31:38 am »
The thing is, I don't want cooking, so don't subscribe to cooking forums. I like electronics, so I subscribe to electronics forum.

If following the forum becomes too much work, I abandon the forum. I know, most people won't care. But if forum becomes too noisy to be useful, and more people leave or don't stick around, then you get a dead forum.
Alex
 

Offline wilfred

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Re: New Off Topic Hobbies Section
« Reply #17 on: January 30, 2021, 01:50:02 am »
The thing is, I don't want cooking, so don't subscribe to cooking forums. I like electronics, so I subscribe to electronics forum.

If following the forum becomes too much work, I abandon the forum. I know, most people won't care. But if forum becomes too noisy to be useful, and more people leave or don't stick around, then you get a dead forum.

I don't want discussion about short selling stocks in some US game store company. Perhaps reading between the lines that is why Dave renamed the General Chat to General Technical Chat.

But a year or two back when the gender studies and various other topics that were of no interest I studied the cross section of contributors to the big ones with lots of posts. What I found was that 50% of posts was made by 10 or fewer contributors. With EEVBLOG at the top by some margin.

So I concluded the Dave's presence in them both encouraged such threads and in so doing sets the tone of the forum generally. So renaming general chat is a bit of a mixed message.

You can tell more about some threads by the number of forum members who do NOT participate and stay well away from them and leave them to a fairly small number of prolific forum posters.

Maybe I've changed, but after clocking 11 years as a member here I feel the forum is a less communal, less genial place to hangout. I don't seem to get news of new things relevant to hobby electronics as much as I used to. It seems very much concentrated on a small group of members. So further diluting the focus on electronics with new unrelated categories doesn't seem likely to change that in any way I would regard as useful.
 

Offline EEVblog

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Re: New Off Topic Hobbies Section
« Reply #18 on: January 30, 2021, 02:10:16 am »
Specifically for me, reading the forum though RSS reader, there is no way to exclude them, so I have to see them if I want to see other stuff.

There is no way you can possibly find every single existing post and topic on this forum interesting, and now all of a sudden it's going to become unreadable.
Threads already drift wildly off-topic, what does a couple of more matter?
I don't expect this section to dominate it's just there in case anyone needs it and doesn't want to or can't go to another decicated forum.
As with all threads here, if someone posts a topic and and no one is interested in discussing it then it just dies naturally. If it does pick up then that means there are people here who are interested in discussing that topic and therefore there is value to them in having that discussion here.
 

Offline EEVblog

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Re: New Off Topic Hobbies Section
« Reply #19 on: January 30, 2021, 02:14:35 am »
So I concluded the Dave's presence in them both encouraged such threads and in so doing sets the tone of the forum generally. So renaming general chat is a bit of a mixed message.

It sends a very clear mesage. Stop posting off-topic stuff that is usually either completely silly like cats or something, or current affairs/politics.
The new section is for specific hobbies a group may be interested in and will be limited to those thing, there will not be a general chat sub section.
 

Offline ataradov

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Re: New Off Topic Hobbies Section
« Reply #20 on: January 30, 2021, 02:16:42 am »
There is no way you can possibly find every single existing post and topic on this forum interesting, and now all of a sudden it's going to become unreadable.
No, but the topics at least start more or less on topic. When I see "butter chicken", I immediately think it is spam since it is so far off from the topic of the forum.

Threads already drift wildly off-topic, what does a couple of more matter?
Where things drift does not matter, I mostly read new topics RSS.

A good thing. I expect this to die naturally, so it is probably fine. I just don't really understand the point of doing that.
Alex
 

Offline DrG

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Re: New Off Topic Hobbies Section
« Reply #21 on: January 30, 2021, 02:26:19 am »
...
I don't want discussion about short selling stocks in some US game store company. Perhaps reading between the lines that is why Dave renamed the General Chat to General Technical Chat.
...

Since you brought it up, I will say that I certainly would not have started that thread if I had only known that you didn't want that discussion...I can at least relate it to technology and I am sure that you can see that.

Here is the current description for that topic area:

This is where everyone hangs out and rants and chats about whatever electronics topics that don't quite fit into the other more specific categories on this forum. Occasional off-topic stuff is ok, but generally we like to keep it electronics related, so please don't start deliberately off-topic threads.

The GameStop topic is one where folks got together on an Internet forum that we have all heard of, largely using the same computer app, to collectively, arguably exploit a market, in a way that was formerly only available to big traders. Now, you can argue the relevance of that to the description, but you can not accurately say that I deliberately started an off-topic thread (which you have not done, but that is explicitly mentioned in the description).
 
But mea culpa, maybe I should have started a thread with endless speculation about why packages from China smell...oh wait.

Seriously, I am not offended that you did not want that thread, but that does not mean that I am not going to stand up for creating that thread.

I am not offended by a cooking thread or RC airplanes or shooting or photography or model railroads or sailing or car restoration or woodworking or metal working or anything else that could be considered a hobby. Since it is easy enough for me to ignore them, it is not a problem for me. I get the RSS feed complaint, and it has been stated.

I get your complaint, but not your point that included specifically mentioning that thread. Doesn't everyone try to adhere to the topic areas, outside of some necessary moves and a few instances of double posts and the like?
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Online nctnico

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Re: New Off Topic Hobbies Section
« Reply #22 on: January 30, 2021, 02:32:15 am »
Yes, on the other hand mechanical engineering/physics/chemistry/math would be way more interesting.
The manufacturing & assembly section is kind of like that. I got some good ideas from there in the past.

Either way hobbies do pop-up in the general chat section anyway so why create a new section? IMHO the EEVblog forum already has too many sections.
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Offline vk6zgo

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Re: New Off Topic Hobbies Section
« Reply #23 on: January 30, 2021, 03:25:47 am »
I think the real question might be:  Why is the environment on this forum more appealing than others? 

I think I can answer that and this is purely my own anecdotal experience and what I've heard from others.

This forum attracts a fairly specialised group of people, compared to the general population. People here generally seem to be more intelligent, coherent and more open to differing ideas than others. It's certainly not the type of forum where bored housewives come to bitch about things or people with huge egos come to troll. I've seen forums such as the Australian Whirlpool forum spiral out of control, it used to be dedicated to just telco and now, you can discuss all manner of topics there from people losing their driving licences to consumer law and everything in between. It has become a shit-show of over moderation and people basically arguing with each other. Basically, Whirlpool (or Whingepool as it's commonly known) has basically reached the point where if a moderator takes issue with you personally or disagrees with your opinion, they just delete your posts. Their forum rules alone spans pages and pages yet are inconsistently applied depending on which moderator you get and which way the wind is blowing, it's not conducive to a nice environment.

To quote figures, they have almost 900k members and over 40 active moderators. EEVblog has almost 53k members and 2 active moderators. Yet very few posts that are not spam get removed and I'd like to think people are generally quite content here.

The idea of the off-topic section was mine (I wanted a section dedicated to cooking as it's one of the topics often discussed in the EEVblog IRC channel). But it's not designed to attract non-EE people to the forum, rather to complement the hobbies and interests of those who are primarily interested in tech/EE/computing but also have other interests. Some people like being members of discreet forums and that's fine, I personally don't.

One of the things I liked about this forum is that it was possible to discuss moderation decisions with other members, unlike Whirlpool, where moderation seems to be done almost at the whim of the moderator, so that one favoured poster gets to go "off topic", post a lot of twaddle & be untouched, but an answer refuting that posting, offering proof of the points made, will be hidden as "off topic".

An even worse example is the sports forum " The Roar", where a posting not in accordance with the favoured narrative never appears at all.
At least Whirlpool has their fairly useless "Talk with a moderator" system,which is clunky as hell to use.

Imagine my surprise, then, this morning, when looking through "Show new replies to your posts" to find that, although the Moderation thread came up complete, there was no "quote" or "reply" option, only a stupid "thanks" option.

"Weird", thought I , & resolved to look for the thread using  the main index.
When I found it, I was surprised to see no postings later than November 2020, & no explanation as to why.

Please don't go down the Whirlpool route, keep us informed!
 

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Re: New Off Topic Hobbies Section
« Reply #24 on: January 30, 2021, 04:27:17 am »
......................
Imagine my surprise, then, this morning, when looking through "Show new replies to your posts" to find that, although the Moderation thread came up complete, there was no "quote" or "reply" option, only a stupid "thanks" option.

"Weird", thought I , & resolved to look for the thread using  the main index.
When I found it, I was surprised to see no postings later than November 2020, & no explanation as to why.
There are 2 Moderation Report threads one in General Chat and the other in the Supporters lounge which I have temporarily locked for moderators and members to take stock of the last few days postings.
Yes that right, I'm as shocked as anyone that I have a lock feature for a thread in the Supporters Lounge.
Maybe that's normal for OP's there IDK.  :-//
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