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Old 07-22-2006, 11:23 PM   #1
Rob Williams
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Default How can we improve our site and forums?

Hey guys,

Now that Techgage has smooth sailing for the past year, it's time to start pushing things to the next level. This is the part where you come in and give us your ideas.

What do you want to see on the site? More Linux articles? More How-Tos? More articles as opposed to reviews? How can we make our forums more enjoyable? Of course there are small changes we could make, but is it almost time for another contest?

When you are done reading a review on our site, what do you wish you could do next? There are endless possibilities really, but we are interested in your input. We have current projects in the work that you may enjoy, but it's always a good thing to get some fresh input!

Feel free to discuss things in this thread!
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Old 07-24-2006, 02:08 AM   #2
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A link from the forums to the homepage. That's the only thing I'd like to see changed...
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Old 07-24-2006, 10:39 AM   #3
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There is one, but it's on the bottom of the page on the right. I loved it when the logo at the top was the link but it has been changed, and for obvious reasons. I am just not used to it yet.
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Old 07-24-2006, 10:46 AM   #4
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This is the thing... nobody is happy regardless of what I did with the top logo. Some people wanted to click that to go to the main site, and others wanted it to go to the homepage of the forums. I'll see if I can figure out adding a new link up to the top that will bring you to the homepage. It -does- make more sense for that logo to bring you to the homepage of the forums though, really.

I really, really hate dealing with vBulletins template files, so it will not be right away.
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Old 07-24-2006, 11:53 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DarkSynergy
There is one, but it's on the bottom of the page on the right.
I never noticed that one until now. I normally don't look at the bottom, and that's probably why I didn't see it.

What if you made the at the top the link to the homepage, and the "TechGage Forums" another button for the forums? It would still look the same, but be more functional. I'm sure you'll figure out something Rob. I know how much effort you put into the site.
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Old 07-24-2006, 12:04 PM   #6
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That would be cool but could be a bit confusing.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Jakal
I never noticed that one until now. I normally don't look at the bottom, and that's probably why I didn't see it.

What if you made the at the top the link to the homepage, and the "TechGage Forums" another button for the forums? It would still look the same, but be more functional. I'm sure you'll figure out something Rob. I know how much effort you put into the site.
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Old 07-26-2006, 08:10 PM   #7
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Reskin these forums. Maybe have a contest to do just that. Yanno one staffers can win hehe.

Have you ever considered shelling these forums into the site itself, so we don't have to link back to the main page, we're already within the framework?

Um...
there are pros and cons to going fixed width on a site. I've seen it succeed and I've seen it fail horribly. I must say viewing this site at 1680x1050 is, I'm sure, a completely different experience than the person viewing 800x600 [majority is probably 1280x1020 or 1024x768] and should we be striving to ensure the experience is uniform across all resolutions?

What about staff bios?
Um...
let me think more about this hehe.
[yes I have photoshop open and I'm starting a forum reskin in the background...]

lol
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Old 07-26-2006, 08:32 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GeekGirl
Reskin these forums. Maybe have a contest to do just that. Yanno one staffers can win hehe.
When the time comes to get a site redesign, the forums will be reskinned at the same time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GeekGirl
Have you ever considered shelling these forums into the site itself, so we don't have to link back to the main page, we're already within the framework?
Shelling vBulletin forums into a site that doesn't run on vBulletin is a pain in the ass. It's in the game plan though

Quote:
Originally Posted by GeekGirl
I must say viewing this site at 1680x1050 is, I'm sure, a completely different experience than the person viewing 800x600 [majority is probably 1280x1020 or 1024x768] and should we be striving to ensure the experience is uniform across all resolutions?
Welp, there's problems with that also. 800*600 is not even in the equation, because an extremely low percentage of people who visit the site use it.

I am sure the site as it stands looks horrible in certain resolutions. I am still not sold on a fixed width, so maybe we should skip that idea. I just don't want the site to look like ass.

:-)
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Old 11-29-2006, 03:04 PM   #9
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Default Require Registration

One of the biggest reasons in my mind to require TechGage forum visitors to register in order to reply is that when a person has registered, they become an invested member of the community, instead of putting their words in and then leaving. You could allow anonymous users to post in the General Discussion and the Reviews And Articles forum. This is probably one of the best things that could be done to cause the community here to expand. Among the posting guidelines should be a requirement to put topics in a forum that they are most relevant in. If someone posts an "audio" topic in general discussion because they aren't registered, the moderator should say "Please register and post this in the correct forum" and close the thread. It's a good idea to leave the forum open to comments from the unregistered, but the unregistered people should be limited in what forums they can post. Requiring or encouraging registration also helps decrease trolling by anonymous jerks.
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Old 11-30-2006, 01:48 AM   #10
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But I encourage anon jerks... Gives me something to laugh about.

The reason you are not required to post in a review thread is because people gen do not want to go through a process or feel obligated to just get some data on something. Yeah some jerk offs post on occasion; No, I dont think many are offended by these jerk offs. Just some good open FAQ stuff.
(i think thats the reason anyhow.)

As for the non reg to post in the rest, No. Why? If you are going to post on something orig or truely want some good feed back, wouldnt you want to be able to be viewed by everyone as being who you are? Why cant someone who is posting or contributing be required to belong to the Borg... er I mean nexus... conclave... ok it is a clult. Got a problem with that?
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Old 11-30-2006, 01:53 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Taterworks View Post
One of the biggest reasons in my mind to require TechGage forum visitors to register in order to reply is that when a person has registered, they become an invested member of the community, instead of putting their words in and then leaving. You could allow anonymous users to post in the General Discussion and the Reviews And Articles forum. This is probably one of the best things that could be done to cause the community here to expand. Among the posting guidelines should be a requirement to put topics in a forum that they are most relevant in. If someone posts an "audio" topic in general discussion because they aren't registered, the moderator should say "Please register and post this in the correct forum" and close the thread. It's a good idea to leave the forum open to comments from the unregistered, but the unregistered people should be limited in what forums they can post. Requiring or encouraging registration also helps decrease trolling by anonymous jerks.
I am unsure what you mean exactly. You recommend that anon can -only- post in the review threads? If so, that's how it always has been. I figure we'd lose out on valuable feedback if we forced people to register for those threads, since many people pass through and want to bitch about one of my reviews (snicker).

The rest of the forums require registration though. I have considered making people reg to reply to our review threads, but I have a feeling they would not be so active.

Let me know if I misunderstood you. I appreciate the feedback
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Old 12-03-2006, 08:20 PM   #12
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Ok, I'm afraid I hadn't noticed that. It's good that the forum is already set up that way. Nothing makes a forum run like its people, however -- so I hope anyone who is new to the forum here and has one of their questions answered will stick around, and take the time to "pay it forward" and answer a question for someone else. Another idea is a campaign to get every member of this forum to invite their friends to come lend their insight and personality.

One thing that the forum could use is a section for user testing and reviews of products that they own. (Registered members only.)

Perhaps on the main page, in addition to the list of most recent reviews, there could be a little box ("More Reviews") that shows two randomly-selected reviews from the full list, with a different set being chosen each time a viewer visits the web site. Just an idea.
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Old 12-03-2006, 10:47 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Taterworks View Post
One thing that the forum could use is a section for user testing and reviews of products that they own. (Registered members only.)

Perhaps on the main page, in addition to the list of most recent reviews, there could be a little box ("More Reviews") that shows two randomly-selected reviews from the full list, with a different set being chosen each time a viewer visits the web site. Just an idea.


I like this idea. We certainly need to focus on getting people more involved in the site.
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Old 12-06-2006, 04:13 PM   #14
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Another idea: The reviews and tech articles are all interspersed with each other in one long list, and it's hard to find a specific type of review. I think there are enough articles now that they ought to be organized by categories, like the Tech Roundups on the main page are.

And another: On the forums, the option to receive an email when someone replies to a thread you posted in should be enabled by default. This way, people will more easily remember that this is a place where they contribute.
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Old 01-07-2007, 08:53 PM   #15
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Some web sites have a ticker that displays the five most recent forum posts. I think we could use one of those.
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