So... new forums software?



  • It's a bit hard to tell with you guys being so subtle all the time... but I've read between the lines, and I've gotten the impression that some of you may not be too thrilled with my choice of forum software.

    So should we switch forums software? @blakeyrat has been generously hosting the old forums... perhaps we migrate back to that?

    I'll leave it up to you guys, especially if you're willing to (continue) helping out on the server/administration side of things (most notably @PJH and @ben_lubar, who've both gone well above-and-beyond in helping out). Please just consider the "front page" -- if we don't integrate w/ the forums, then we need to either disable comments, use Discuss, or go back to the basic commenting system that was there originally.



  • For all the hate Discourse gets, at least it's still getting updates, some of which are security-related. Community Server had so many exploits it's not even funnyhilarious.



  • @apapadimoulis said:

    So should we switch forums software?

    Yes. This would have got a Yes vote before Jeff did his thing today and banned most of us who did bother to actually report bugs and provide feedback from doing so.

    @apapadimoulis said:

    especially if you're willing to (continue) helping out on the server/administration side of things

    Totally willing if needed.



  • @ben_lubar said:

    some of which are security-related.

    Because we find them and we reportreported them.



  • Care for some, uh, explanation? Are you no longer besties with Jeff?

    Anyway that Flarum thing is worth investigating. It seems like they have a much better community support, and I think we got used to the DiscoDesign.



  • I still like Discourse, even with its flaws. I vote no.

    I think we all do, even if the co-owner is an ass.



  • @apapadimoulis said:

    So should we switch forums software? @blakeyrat has been generously hosting the old forums... perhaps we migrate back to that?

    That ship has sailed.


  • Winner of the 2016 Presidential Election

    Meh, even if I was banned from meta.d for no reason, I really don't care.

    I like Discourse. I like it for the fact that we keep finding ways to spin things around. I like it because if we want something to complain about, Discourse offers it to us.
    So if you wanna switch, thats fine. If I can help in any way, I would do it. If you wanna try another "future orientated"super risky forum software we'd probably be having fun there, too.

    Going back to CS seems like a bad step, though. I agree with @ben_lubar here that something up to date should be preferred.



  • Yes on principal alone.
    Yes because this piece of shit software sucks
    Yes because the devs suck
    Yes because FUCKING YES.

    @apapadimoulis said:

    if we don't integrate w/ the forums, then we need to either disable comments, use Discuss, or go back to the basic commenting system that was there originally.

    1. Disable comments: No. Bad idea. Commenting needs to happen. A stopgap would be put a hyperlink to the appropriate forum thread, then figure out how to pull comments back out. Shitty, but it'd work
    2. Fuck Disqus with a leaky car battery. I will gladly pull up any of my Disqus rants to tell you why, if you need to. I think I have a proven track record of pointing out, in advance, why certain discussion platforms suck / will suck if implemented.
    3. Why not go back to that? It worked. It was simple, allowed for anon comments, and was never a barrier. If it was tied to old asp.net code, I'm sure anyone can whip up a new one in a matter of minutes. textbox, wyswig, akami, submit, akami, save to db, done.


  • Jesus fuck, I don't know how Discourse manages to suck so much, but until my third or fourth read, I didn't even realize that was Alex posting:

    1. Flat design means the headers fade into the background
    2. tiny tiny font on user names make them hard to notice
    3. font color doesn't make it stand out
    4. Stupid username restrictions mean that rather than a distinctive and human readable "Alex Papadimoulis", you get apapdimoulis which kind gets lost as noise in the corner of one's eye

    edit: And you can only discern the second image because DysfunctionalSweve onebox but a border around it.



  • @loopback0 said:

    Jeff did his thing today and banned most of us who did bother to actually report bugs and provide feedback from doing so

    Buh? That happened? Was there anything on why that happened?



  • @Lorne_Kates said:

    can only discern the second image because DysfunctionalSweve onebox but a border around it

    Actually, that's one of our CSS customizations. Discourse's default CSS doesn't put anything around images:


  • mod

    @locallunatic said:

    @loopback0 said:
    Jeff did his thing today and banned most of us who did bother to actually report bugs and provide feedback from doing so

    Buh? That happened? Was there anything on why that happened?

    The information is here.


  • mod

    @Maciejasjmj said:

    Anyway that Flarum thing is worth investigating. It seems like they have a much better community support, and I think we got used to the DiscoDesign.

    This is also a bonus:

    They use a real bug tracker! :smile:



  • @rc4 said:

    I think we all do

    Haha, nope. I can put up with broken software, but after today this joke isn't funny anymore.



  • @locallunatic said:

    Buh? That happened? Was there anything on why that happened?

    Summary:

    https://what.thedailywtf.com/t/vote-of-no-confidence/270/1235?u=pjh

    With links into the relevant posts that @abarker linked to.



  • @Lorne_Kates said:

    edit: And you can only discern the second image because DysfunctionalSweve onebox b@PJH added custom site specific CSS to put a border around it.

    FTFY

    :hanzo:



  • @abarker said:

    The information is here.

    Wow.

    Also, quotes don't preserve hyperlinks. Should I file a bug on meta.d?



  • @Lorne_Kates said:

    Should I file a bug on meta.d?

    Only if you've not been suspended...



  • @PJH said:

    @Lorne_Kates said:
    Should I file a bug on meta.d?

    Only if you've not been suspended...

    ...and want to rectify that.



  • @PJH said:

    Only if you've not been suspended...

    I never created an account in the first place. Again, on principal alone, I refused to do any sort of useful bug reports (outside of Blakey's bug report thread), or css hacks, or plug-ins, or user-scripts, or anything. I have a going rate for doing development work.

    Not that I want to intentionally go out of my way to provoke anyone, but if I did create an account, I wonder how long it'd take to get banned/suspended?




  • Winner of the 2016 Presidential Election

    If they didn't log our IPs, you could probably just say you are from boing boing or some other Discourse forum and they would never find out.

    Filed Under: unless you type TDWTF somewhere... then instaban!



  • Agree on migration, insufficient data for actual reasoning, meta - reasoning is:

    <!-- You expect Jane Bailey to compete with Jeff Atwood, when he doesn't even have to anonymize or embellish? -->

    I am more interested in the WTF that is the forum software than I am about any of the WTFs that have been in the content for the last month or few. It's a really WTFy approach to a forum and it's making the articles have to work way too hard, in order to keep up.



  • @Maciejasjmj said:

    Care for some, uh, explanation?

    It mostly comes down to the fact that sites like TDWTF are not, and likely will never be, a target customer/user of Discourse. That's just how the market/business played out.

    I know they really wanted to support communities like ours, but (1) we don't pay for their support, and (2) the bugs/issues/etc we identify have zero impact on selling licenses/subscriptions to people who do or might pay.



  • I'm not really sure about the snide dismissal of bugs on mobile views (even if it was only marginally related in this case).


  • Winner of the 2016 Presidential Election

    Agreed, only if we can keep all the data from this forum online, preferably migrated.

    FWIW, I was banned too, and I never even posted anything inflammatory - All I did was work on bug reports and stuff.


  • Winner of the 2016 Presidential Election

    +1



  • @apapadimoulis said:

    @Maciejasjmj said:
    Care for some, uh, explanation?

    It mostly comes down to the fact that sites like TDWTF are not, and likely will never be, a target customer/user of Discourse. That's just how the market/business played out.

    I know they really wanted to support communities like ours, but (1) we don't pay for their support, and (2) the bugs/issues/etc we identify have zero impact on selling licenses/subscriptions to people who do or might pay.

    ­3. Jeff.



  • @apapadimoulis said:

    the bugs/issues/etc we identify have zero impact on selling licenses/subscriptions to people who do or might pay

    If those people don't care about security, sure. We did find some legit XSS bugs and an email address leak.



  • When the entire community gets banned for pointing out that desktop and mobile have different button order, which is completely legitimate, it's pretty worrying. No customer wants that kind of weirdness, and would absolutely complain if they knew about it.



  • @apapadimoulis said:

    It mostly comes down to the fact that sites like TDWTF are not, and likely will never be, a target customer/user of Discourse. That's just how the market/business played out.

    I can see how this works. Basically, their customers don't use the software as intensely and don't uncover all the weird things we do. They probably have much more casual users who post much more occasionally. IOW, users who aren't as demanding about the forum software they're using.


  • Winner of the 2016 Presidential Election

    I know you like defending them and thats fine, usually.

    But in this case instead of making a topic here saying "Hey, it doesn't work out with you guys. We have discussed this with @apapadimoulis and will stop supporting your community. You guys are finding bugs but our paying customers never run into them. We will leave you to your own demise now"
    They went out of their way, banned everybody they could find from meta.d as long as he/she was related to TDWTF and abused their admin-powers to suspend / semi delete themselves on this forum. One of them actually leaving a message in his suspension.

    Now I am not you and I don't know how you feel about that. But in my eyes this is pretty shitty and should not be defended with a simple "thats how the market played out".

    I am not saying "take a side" here but please for the love of ... something something ... at least don't take their side. Especially since (as far as I can tell) we didn't do anything wrong on meta.d in the recent past....

    Filed Under: Just my 2 cents



  • But what about :badger:s? That's the most important <only, really> part of TDWTF!



  • Yeah so that kind of sucks. I actually like discourse, even though it needs a lot of work.


  • Winner of the 2016 Presidential Election

    @Captain said:

    Yeah so that kind of sucks. I actually like discourse, even though it needs a lot of work.

    I don't necessarily like it, but it's not terrible. Now that this has happened though... Not interested in it at all.

    @rc4 said:

    But what about :badger:s? That's the most important <only, really> part of TDWTF!

    +1



  • We said that about tags, and we've been doing fine without them.



  • @Kuro said:

    Now I am not you and I don't know how you feel about that.

    I mean, you guys are quite harsh, and with all the personal attacks, it's rather toxic. That builds up, and eventually it's best to do a quick, clean break. There's no winning here. Do you really think a "goodbye and thanks for all the fish" topic would have been filled with anything but hate?

    If I were them, I likely would have told you all to go fuck yourselves after a week and then add a term in the EULA saying "... except for TDWTF, you may not use this software under any circumstances." That's probably why I don't do this for a living.

    Anyway, let's move on -- I'll leave it up to you all to decide. A move does make sense, and I like @Lorne_Kates's points about the comments, unless we do integrate discussion, it should be easy to re-implement the old comments "system".


  • Grade A Premium Asshole

    @apapadimoulis said:

    I mean, you guys are quite harsh, and with all the personal attacks, it's rather toxic. That builds up, and eventually it's best to do a quick, clean break. There's no winning here. Do you really think a "goodbye and thanks for all the fish" topic would have been filled with anything but hate?

    If I were them, I likely would have told you all to go fuck yourselves after a week and then add a term in the EULA saying "... except for TDWTF, you may not use this software under any circumstances." That's probably why I don't do this for a living.

    You are not wrong.

    But, and this is a weak but, Atwood was the worst possible choice for someone to bring new forum software to these forums. He was universally disliked before Discourse came here, and for good reason I believe. There was never any hope of Discourse being liked here, but he thought that he could apply technology and gamification (and being buddies with the site owner...) to a personality clash problem.

    You, I, and everyone here knew that would not work...

    But banning people off of one forum based upon actions on another, when they have been extremely cordial on the forum they were banned from, is completely fucking unacceptable.



  • Alex, I think that the expressed hate for discourse mainly has to do with the fact that we're programmers, and we're trained to look for things that are wrong. Can you imagine any other community doing a "Likes" thread to see if it could break the forum software? To me, it seems like Discourse is an order of magnitude more interesting than Community Server. Is there an objective way of finding out what people really think (vs. what they say they think), e.g. total number of posts and reads in the last year under Community Server, and total number of posts and reads in the first year under Discourse?


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    @tharpa said:

    Is there an objective way of finding out what people really think (vs. what they say they think), e.g. total number of posts and reads in the last year under Community Server, and total number of posts and reads in the first year under Discourse?

    Is there an objective way to find out if those same improvements could have been made with literally any other forum software?

    No. No there is not.



  • I'm pretty sure discourse was an activity boost, though we also lost people.

    Yet I think part of that was the fact it was new, and the fact bugs (or at least some of them) got fixed and replaced with new and exciting bugs (and bikesheddings) to talk about, rather than the complete stasis of CS.

    Now that meta.d has kicked us out and slammed the door shut behind us, I think it is time to move on.



  • @tharpa said:

    Is there an objective way of finding out what people really think (vs. what they say they think), e.g. total number of posts and reads in the last year under Community Server, and total number of posts and reads in the first year under Discourse?

    Yes. We have databases to query. But just look at post counts. It's a lot easier to post a lot of stuff on discourse. Some would say this is a mark against discourse, but the client generated preview prevents a lot of ajax (or were they full http?) round trips. For all the slowness of discourse, CS was pretty slow, too, especially with a lot of tags.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    ERROR_POLL_NOT_FOUND

    My vote would be to switch if we have an alternative that will allow for importing posts from here and the CS copy that blakeyrat is hosting.

    I'm assuming you won't pick something buggy and ill-supported again.

    Filed under: necro ALL the things!



  • @tharpa said:

    total number of posts and reads in the last year under Community Server, and total number of posts and reads in the first year under Discourse

    TDWTF has unquestionably been more active under Discourse than CS. I can only speculate as to the reasons, but I'm pretty sure it is at least partly due to a positive feedback mechanism. The last few months of CS, there were often only an handful of posts per day, so there were few posts to reply to. When Discourse was inflicted on us, there was a lot of initial activity, if for no reason other than to complain. There were a lot of posts to reply to, so there were a lot of replies. Topic drift happened (much to Blakey's dismay), and people started talking about things other than :wtf:s, so there were even more things to reply to, so more replies.

    Is it easier to post in Discourse than CS? I dunno, maybe (except during cootie storms, obviously). It certainly provides us with a never-ending supply of :wtf: topics to discuss. In doing so, it has helped build a community (mostly) united by a common enemy, and this community is big enough and active enough to be a critical mass to keep the discussions going.

    As much as I want to move to better forum software, I'd hate to see the community get fragmented like it did when we moved to Discourse. (Although I'd be a lot more usefully productive if it did.)


  • Grade A Premium Asshole

    @tharpa said:

    Is there an objective way of finding out what people really think (vs. what they say they think), e.g. total number of posts and reads in the last year under Community Server, and total number of posts and reads in the first year under Discourse?

    It just occurred to me, go through the Mediocre Poster badges from today and see what percentage of them are for people suggesting change. There are a slew of them in there right now.



  • @tharpa said:

    Can you imagine any other community doing a "Likes" thread to see if it could break the forum software?

    No, but I can think of at least five communities off the top of my head that would be doing a "Likes" thread just for fun, hit exactly the same problems we did and be even more angry than us because they don't know how computers work.



  • @Polygeekery said:

    @tharpa said:
    Is there an objective way of finding out what people really think (vs. what they say they think), e.g. total number of posts and reads in the last year under Community Server, and total number of posts and reads in the first year under Discourse?

    It just occurred to me, go through the Mediocre Poster badges from today and see what percentage of them are for people suggesting change. There are a slew of them in there right now.

    I think my point was that if you want to know what people think of a bakery's cupcakes, don't listen to their complaints as they're stuffing their mouths with cupcakes. Count the cupcakes they eat. If they complain while they're stuffing their mouths, maybe they're just complainers.



  • If you want to know what people think of the quality of roads in the city, don't listen to their complaints as they're driving through the downtown. Count the kilometers they make. If they complain while driving this same road everyday, maybe they're just complainers.


  • Grade A Premium Asshole

    @Gaska said:

    If they complain while driving this same road everyday, maybe they're just complainers.

    Or, maybe not dismiss their complaints just because they would rather drive across a road that knocks the fillings out of their teeth before they would walk 100km. ;)


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