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Sub-Forums for The Add-on Release Community Forum

#1
I am totally new to xenforo - and really like so far what I have seen. The product and especially this community is a real treat. Extremly friendly and helpful.

However there is one thing, which I do not understand about THIS xenforo.com community forum.

Why is it that for certain addons - we are getting such enormously long threads ?

If you are looking for some help on a certain mod for example and need to read through one large thread... the top is 168 pages with 3349 replies - things are getting a bit "frustrating" to say the least.

Even using the search function within the thread does not really help here. And if you jump into one of those MEGA-threads you find tons of questions asked.. re-bounced up... re-asked again... and often just buried.

Maybe its because I am used to plugin directories and forums e.g. on wordpress.org, which keep different questions regarding one plugin nicely organized in one sub-forum.

So, have a look on our "worst" MEGA threads in this forum:
(you can see the current lengths of these threads - if you go to the Add-on Releases Forum and sort by Replies)

[8wayRun.Com] XenPorta (Portal) 168 pages - 3349 replies

[8wayRun.Com] XenPorta (Module Add-Ons) 33 pages - 647 replies

[8wayRun.Com] XenMedio (Media) 64 pages - 1269 replies

TaigaChat - AJAX shoutbox - 64 pages - 1269 replies

[8wayRun.Com] XenCarta (Lite Wiki) - 37 pages - 733 replies

[LN] Blog - 45 pages - 890 replies

vBulletin 4 Importer - 38 pages - 740 replies

The Happy Place - Clickable Smilies Under Editor Control - 20 pages - 389 Replies

Announcing Forum Runner - XenForo iPhone/iPad/Android App! - 20 pages - 392 replies

---

My question to @Brogan Kier and anybody from xenforo.com is just simple:

Can you create Sub-Forums for those addons which get lets say 20 pages long threads ?
In each sub-forum the first thread would be the authors-thread, where the addon author post the current version of his addon and installation instructions. Such a author-thread would be sticky and clossed for replies.

In the current addon state, separate sub-forums for the following addons would already do:

- [8wayRun.Com] XenPorta (Portal)
- [8wayRun.Com] XenMedio (Media)
- TaigaChat - AJAX shoutbox
- [8wayRun.Com] XenCarta (Lite Wiki)
- [LN] Blog
- vBulletin 4 Importer
- The Happy Place - Clickable Smilies Under Editor Control
- Announcing Forum Runner - XenForo iPhone/iPad/Android App!

BTW, I put this suggestion in the add-ons section, since I thought it is the best place to get other "long-thread-victims" to spot it. Sorry if this should have gone into the suggestions forum.

Would be nice if others could jump in and give your thoughts about making this forum even more useful.
 

Brogan

XenForo moderator
Staff member
#2
Moved from add-on releases to feedback.

This has been suggested a few times before.

Keeping add-on threads updated and informative is the job of the add-on developer.
That includes things such as FAQs in the first few posts.

If they don't do that, there's not a lot we can do.

Having stuck, locked threads would just mean more work for moderators who would have to unlock and lock them every time they required updating.
 

RobParker

Well-known member
#3
Keeping add-on threads updated and informative is the job of the add-on developer.
That includes things such as FAQs in the first few posts.
That's not really true though. There are enough of us now that are familiar with xenporta (say for example) where if it had it's own dedicated forum we'd be able to help answering support requests or even post some documentation if Jaxel's too busy.

As it stands now, any request for help gets lost straight away until someone quotes themselves a couple of times and it gets noticed.

I'm hoping that the resource manager has some sort of frequently asked questions section that the community (not necessarily the add-on creator) can contribute towards but I don't know if that's planned or not.
 

Brogan

XenForo moderator
Staff member
#4
There are enough of us now that are familiar with xenporta (say for example) where if it had it's own dedicated forum we'd be able to help answering support requests or even post some documentation if Jaxel's too busy.
Like this for example? http://xenforo.com/community/threads/xenatendo-users-guide-faq.16006/

There's nothing to stop anyone else doing similar.

Taking your specific point though, Jaxel himself has stated numerous times that he hates giving support, so whether the Resource Manager has a FAQ section or not is a moot point.
 
#5
Thanks for replying so quickly Brogan.

Keeping add-on threads updated and informative is the job of the add-on developer.
yes, and the developers do a good job on this. But its just a real challenge to read through a over 1500 replies thread.

If they don't do that, there's not a lot we can do.
well, but its not the point of answering addon related questions, its the issue of presenting those questions and answers in a way more structured way.
Which would be a seperate sub-forum for each big addon.


This has been suggested a few times before.
Ok. so sorry for having asked for the same thing againg. Could not find this request before. Sorry.
 

RobParker

Well-known member
#6
Like this for example? http://xenforo.com/community/threads/xenatendo-users-guide-faq.16006/

There's nothing to stop anyone else doing similar.

Taking your specific point though, Jaxel himself has stated numerous times that he hates giving support, so whether the Resource Manager has a FAQ section or not is a moot point.
I mean more someone asks "how do I do such and such in xenporta?" and it just gets merged into the thread and lost.

Also regarding the resource manager that's specifically why I said community contributed, not necessarily from the author. Something like the yahoo "best answer" system utilising likes would work great.
 

Brogan

XenForo moderator
Staff member
#7
I mean more someone asks "how do I do such and such in xenporta?" and it just gets merged into the thread and lost.
Threads related to add-ons are merged because that is the best place to ask for support on a specific add-on.

If we didn't the support forums would just fill up with threads asking the same thing over and over.

Search does work, it's a shame more people don't make use of it or read through the threads first before asking something which has previously been asked 20+ times.
Perhaps that would cut down on the number of duplicate posts resulting in unwieldy threads?
 

Steve10

Well-known member
#8
Threads related to add-ons are merged because that is the best place to ask for support on a specific add-on.

If we didn't the support forums would just fill up with threads asking the same thing over and over.

Search does work, it's a shame more people don't make use of it or read through the threads first before asking something which has previously been asked 20+ times.
Perhaps that would cut down on the number of duplicate posts resulting in unwieldy threads?
Do you really expected people to read through the entire XenPorta thread for example, I do thing that there's no perfect solution but telling new users to just read through everything isn't a solution at all. There's nothing more off putting to someone inexperienced at running a forum than being told that they should read through a thread thousands of entries long. yes search works but not always well enough and it's not always the first thing people thing off.
 

Forsaken

Well-known member
#9
Do you really expected people to read through the entire XenPorta thread for example, I do thing that there's no perfect solution but telling new users to just read through everything isn't a solution at all. There's nothing more off putting to someone inexperienced at running a forum than being told that they should read through a thread thousands of entries long. yes search works but not always well enough and it's not always the first thing people thing off.
Theres a thread search feature in 1.1.
 

Brogan

XenForo moderator
Staff member
#10
*shrugs*

I got tired of the same questions being asked over and over again and having to type out the same answers so I created some FAQs.
It doesn't stop all of the duplicate posts, but it has definitely reduced them.

Add-on authors can do the same for their add-ons to cut down on repeat questions and make it easier for their customers to find relevant information.
 

Digital Doctor

Well-known member
#12
If you are looking for some help on a certain mod for example and need to read through one large thread... the top is 168 pages with 3349 replies - things are getting a bit "frustrating" to say the least.
+1 Exactly.

Even using the search function within the thread does not really help here. And if you jump into one of those MEGA-threads you find tons of questions asked.. re-bounced up... re-asked again... and often just buried.
Definitely. It "can" help "sometimes".

Maybe its because I am used to plugin directories and forums e.g. on wordpress.org, which keep different questions regarding one plugin nicely organized in one sub-forum.
Already suggested by myself. This solution would cause a few interesting problems for the rest of the forums ... but I have figured out excellent workarounds.

Would be nice if others could jump in and give your thoughts about making this forum even more useful.
Many others have discussed all the issues you raise.

And now for the bad news elbav:
The relatively long awaited Resources (aka Addon) Manager ... will only support one thread per Add-on.


Keeping add-on threads updated and informative is the job of the add-on developer.
That includes things such as FAQs in the first few posts.
This solution never worked well, isn't working well, and will never work well.

If they don't do that, there's not a lot we can do.
There are *LOTS* of things xenforo.com can do to better support free addons.
Xenforo.com can provide it's paying members with an infrastructure that supports the goals of the community. The current "one thread per addon" should be easily seen as a suboptimal way to manage addons. It is virtually impossible for an addon to be supported well with the current and planned infrastructure. Marshall McLuhan said "the medium is the message" and here the medium is suboptimal.
 

Shelley

Well-known member
#14
BTW, I put this suggestion in the add-ons section, since I thought it is the best place to get other "long-thread-victims" to spot it. Sorry if this should have gone into the suggestions forum.

Would be nice if others could jump in and give your thoughts about making this forum even more useful.

Don't agree. all your proposing is to move long add-on threads 20 pages or longer (which aren't a problem tbh if you spend the time searching for what you want) into a subforum where they face the same issue. Most add-on threads will face getting past the page amount limit and further down the road instead of the long thread problem we're going to be blessed with the long sub forum problem.

Sorry, I don't agree with this because this is a short term solution where further down the road it's got the potential to cause headaches and be a disaster.
 

yavuz

Well-known member
#15
Wheather you split the messages or move them to a seperate forum most of the messages will remain "junk" and there is not much to prevent that. I think the popular add-ons need their own knowledgebases. Most questions are repeated over and over again and answered.

Maybe XenForo's help section could offer some of the add-on developers access to create pages for their users. That said users often tend to ask first without checking FAQ's or Help Pages.
 

Digital Doctor

Well-known member
#17
Oh my.
As opposed to looking for solutions or at least optimizing the organization of addon information ... people just throw up their hands saying nothing can be done.

All of the criticisms of using a subforum to manage an addon are easily overcome.
Addon some ideas expressed here to prevent "What's New sprawl" and subforums would make an excellent option to provide support of Addons and many other things.

Free Addons, which by their nature have minimalist support need the entire community pitching in to help. Why is there no innovation on this perennial issue ?