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On Wed, 2011-11-30 at 12:05 +0100, Christian Lohmaier wrote:
Hi Drew, *,

On Wed, Nov 30, 2011 at 5:11 AM, drew <> wrote:
On Wed, 2011-11-30 at 03:08 +0100, Christian Lohmaier wrote:

What would you want to extend it with?

Some features to consider - just ramblings at the moment..

OK - those you listed don't sound like you'd need a big extension or
something, but let's walk through them nevertheless.

==== hey hey, not so fast =====

For new registrants:

Meter post frequency - for instance, minimum of 5 minutes between posts
_until_ 3 posts or 30 days after registration, whichever comes first
(just an example, so please don't start discussing specifics on exact
counts/periods here) - this will kill most serious spamming attacks in
the least intrusive way possible.

Don't think this will stop spam. 

yes it does actually - of a certain type.

JForum already integrates with
stopforumspam, that is probably a more efficient way. 

Ok - so use that also.

It also has a
forced delay between postings, but the default of 15seconds (and
milliseconds as units) indicate that this is more targeted to prevent

Meter search frequency  - defense against the poor man's DOS attack -
usually tied to new registrations again.

It's using lucene as index - and lucene is seriously fast. So
requesting random (and thus non-cached pages) would more likely cause
a DOS probably.

yes that would be the smart man's DOS attack - doesn't mean the other
way isn't used.

What could easily be done is to have new users be on moderation only,
but the promotion to "can post without moderation" has to be done
manually, so too much work unless the spam really is a problem.

Post moderation will add a lot of unneeded overhead to your crew.

======= You use what ==========

Custom user profile fields - i.e. Version of the application and OS used
- nice to be able to flag these fields as required during registration

Don't agree here, as those mentioned are more or less useless, and
don't fit many users anyway. Many use both Windows and Linux, and
while they are using 3.4.1 when registering, they soon after install
3.4.2, then 3.4.3, then 3.4.4, and don't bother to update their

my experience, and that of some others, says it is important - the aging
issue can be a problem, but keep in mind that the majority of folks will
come ask 1 or 2 questions and then never be seen again.

As for multiple OS/Version users, again in my experience that is not the
norm and your perception IMO is possibly influenced by the fact that in
the self selected group of individuals that are active with projects it
is just the opposite. 'Power users' will skew this also, they tend to
ask more questions and tend to have multiple os/versions but they again
make up a smaller percentage of the overall user base.

- custom fields display in public profile on posts
-- cuts way down on the 'what are you using because you didn't tell me',
pre-question, question exchange, quite a bit.

This is what I hate most about forums. The unrelated information added
to each and every post that makes web-searches for a specific product

Well, (WinXp vs Win7, LibreOffice 3.4 vs OO.o 3.1 vs NeoOffice x.y)
hardly seems like unrelated information.

It is nice to know that <someuser> owns the device, but I don't give a
damn when he talks about his cats in the posts.

I promise to never add a custom field asking if you are a Cat or Dog
person - OK - though I will add ... different strokes for different
folks as they say.

Rather than this, I'd modify the enter-a-post page to show a big hint
regarding giving the necessary version and OS information.

===== do the bump or disco lives =====

[a bump means to push an existing question that has received zero
responses back to the top of the list, as if it where a new question]

bump delay, this is the minimum period of time that must pass before the
original poster (or moderator) can manually bump the topic - haven't
seen the acp for JForum so don't know if this has it or not.

Hmm - as there is no special "bump" feature, a topic is "bumped" by
sending a reply. I don't want to limit people from providing
additional information that they found out about. And I don't want to
hinder people from posting a solution they found out themselves just
after hitting "send". (Often enough when explaining your problem to
others, you see "openings" for a solution). So I cannot think of a
sensible way to prevent this/make it useful.

No on is limited from doing anything by this. Sorry I just don't follow
your line of thought here at all.

If the time is short - it is likely in the new posts anyway, if much
time has passed, then bumping the topic is legitimate. Also I wouldn't
limit it to posts with no reply, there are enough forum posts with a
reply, but no answer. So it is not really feasible.

Yes - a way to designate whether a question is actually [solved] would
be a definite desire and if that is in place then extending the 'bump'
to include zero reply OR not solved would make sense.

Ability to set auto bump and length of time before this happens - really
nice if the auto-bump can be forum specific - cause you really don't
care in a general chit chat list, but have a fairly long wait period for
say a coding list and a short period for an install help list.

If a user didn't get a reply/answer for two weeks, and doesn't provide
more info, asks for more details - what makes you think a bump will
change the situation?

Well, IMO a group will form of responders, people that actively come
looking to answer questions - they tend to do things like 'list
un-answered questions' and then work their way down the list - most
people tend to read from top to bottom and cherry pick if you will
things of interest - as the original post slides down the list it's
chances of getting an answer diminish.

Honestly, instead of auto-bumping it should be
auto-moved-to-trashcan/the category for unanswered posts.

Well, you can do that, I'm sure no one will mind if you delete their
posts. But come back to the idea of marking issues solved and the better
solution of weighting the search function to favor these.

I doubt the usefulness of this. And once you get to the point where
you have 20 or 30 unanswered posts, if all of them get auto-bumped you
will create a worse situation, since new questions will me moved out
of the active-topics-viewers sight. Automatic bumping only creates
noise (IMHO).

Well, I would not want to do it for all lists - and would even concede
that point in general cases.

[I'm used to seeing systems that limit the number of bumps for any
single question to two]

Did in your opinion the auto-bumping help at all? (well, surely
depends on the amount of postings in the forum, and the topic of the
forum, but still - did it help?)

I've only seen it used in a few places, never on a board I admin'd on,
it seemed to help, but again I'll put this one clearly in the bin of
'off the top of the head ideas'.

===== a rose by any other name ===

karma is called ranking in some systems - though it can also be handled
with custom groups - it is considered important by most people that use
web forums often - but again almost all forums handle it in one way or

Karma = the user's reputation, determined by the score of the person's postings.
i.e. you can rate a user's posting, and the user's karma will depends
on the ratings he received for his posts.

Yes I like the way jForum handles this also.

What ever system used it is best if it is not tied only to post count,
- all forums (web or email) tend to have a few energetic individuals,
heavy on posts, light on useful content

Yes - I fully agree - there is the possibility to define Rankings by

but I don't plan on using them.

*smile*...well said.

anyway - as I said those were just some random thoughts on features -
what I would be most concerned with is that the feature mix, the decison
process, belong to the people that work the site.

Talk to you later,


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