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Re^2: Perl Monks monastery vs the Vatican

by Steve_BZ (Chaplain)
on Dec 10, 2014 at 14:21 UTC ( #1109909=note: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

in reply to Re: Perl Monks monastery vs the Vatican
in thread Perl Monks monastery vs the Vatican

Well maybe it doesn't, but we should at least go through the thought process of considering what advances there have been in the last ten or more years.

Look at this from 2012 Repainting the Monastery

Why don't we have a toolbar to make editing easier? Why is the edit box so small? Because it was designed on a 640x480 machine and no one has changed it!

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Re^3: Perl Monks monastery vs the Vatican
by QM (Parson) on Dec 10, 2014 at 14:52 UTC
    Interesting ideas. Since you haven't been around here as long as us (*cough*) old-timers, you've probably not read the posts about how the hardware and site is essentially free to us (but please find the donut button), and updates are by people with real jobs who help out because they have the skills, motivation, and time to do so. It's supposed to be a lean mean content site. As such, it should load very quickly on a phone, assuming a few personalized settings to reduce the sidebar clutter.

    On my Firefox, the edit box is resizable. I don't look into that sorta stuff much, I take it for granted, so I'm not sure if there are some server side settings that will improve those kinds of issues.

    Toolbar? I basically taught myself some HTML by wanting to post here, so I think it's a help, but I can see how someone wouldn't want to remember how to enter a less than or a bullet list. I can only offer that you might write it in something else and paste in the HTML equivalent, complete with custom site tags. Sorry.

    I've also seen some folks wrestling with fancy sites that do all that sh*t for you. It's a nightmare, because you need a plugin for this, and a plugin for that, and this plugin isn't compatible with the framework version, or the other plugins you need, or your security plugin, and your hosting service doesn't allow SSH except from registered IPs and Tuesdays in months with the letter A in them. So the people with the most motivation to contribute content spend most of their time keeping the system from crashing, burn out, and find something more productive to contribute to.

    If you want a pretty site, that's easy for our collective parent-in-laws to use, please feel free to start one. But this site is the way it is, because it is useful to its members, and has a reasonable barrier to entry for mischief makers. There's also some degree of growing into the community, by fiddling with all the knobs (and being told you're a knob sometimes).

    Seriously, the only thing I've felt a very small need for is some image capability. But everyone seems to find someplace to host a screenshot or a big text dump, at least for a short time. Since the site hardware is essentially provided for free, I wouldn't want to waste storage space on cat videos for the sake of the rare screenshot.

    But if you have a burning Perl question (and sometimes not even Perl), and you want a quick, accurate, efficient answer (really, all three are available most of the time), post your question here. I've had little questions that had 10 replies in 15 minutes, which unblocked my $work, and made me look impressive in the eyes of the boss. (Thanks to all of those responders over the years who have helped me out, put up with my stupidity, and let me post more questions and answers anyway!)

    So please don't take this the wrong way. Many have come and said "Why are you so far behind?" And the answer has always been, "Why do we need more than this?". It's like NASA spending millions to develop a zero-G ballpoint pen, while the Russians are using pencils. We like suggestions, and we consider all reasonable ideas (and sometimes the unreasonable ones). Then like anything else, it comes down to what to do, who has the skill, and who has the time. Many "nice to have" ideas have fallen by the wayside for lack of any of those three points. Mostly we only need pencils here. Sometimes we'd like to have zero-G ballpoint laser GPS quantum tunneling time machine teleporting 3D printers. But then we'd become rich and famous, and we couldn't stand for that.

    Quantum Mechanics: The dreams stuff is made of

      Why is changing Perlmonks automatically equivalent of taking away from what it is now? I think the OP argues that it could be all that and additionally a marketing success for the Perl language. The whole site is organized around volunteers. I would think it would not be that hard to find a few. It seems every suggestion of improvement is met with the same checklist of why Perlmonks is good so far. Same with Perl for that matter. Why do we need more than this? Why do we eat Steak instead of Millet?

      Image capability? Why not? Maybe that could be the first concrete suggestion. Storage gets cheaper every day. I don't know why at least the practicalities of it can't be investigated. It shouldn't be insulting or surprising to anyone that some members would question the way things are. None of it is meant disrespectfully.

      Realistically though, how much benefit could a facelift bring? Would it attract new members? I think it would be cool if the Monastery did something really cool that coincided with a Perl announcement of some sort..

        Why is it that persons who are not volunteering are always so sure someone else should be?

        I looked into hacking on the site years ago. The code base for the Everything Engine and the fork that this site runs on is difficult to adapt and unpleasant to look at. There arenít a lot of hackers with that kind of skill, time, and interest and those who have those things tend to see the site for what it is: a pretty basic though nicely threaded forum which does what it does perfectly well as is.

        While I would also enjoy a facelift, it would not alter my participation here because it has nothing to do why I come here and I donít think itís that bad looking. StackOverflow looks and functions better but I find the unthreaded, no downvote comments, sterile-as-possible-by-policy, freeze this crap, block that content, wiki ethos there a bit toxic. Pretty and snappy as it is, Iím always driven back here when I try to spend time over there.

        Anyway, I would participate in a rewrite and faceliftónot a redesign of the community or voting policies or anything but cosmetic, UX, and performance based changesóof the site if done with modern idioms with best web-practices and an open license. I think itís a fairly easy six month part time project for 2 or 3 devs; and one good project manager to write a spec, API outline, and some TDD/regression tests and keep things on point (this would probably be tye, Corion, or jdporter, or maybe all of them). Porting the content would be difficult though and require a time commitment from someone who knows the current codebase and its pitfalls well.

      QM wrote, "...(but please find the donut button)"

      I looked and looked again but I couldn't find the donut button.

        Athanasius has it spot on. I listen to podcasts on my commute, and frequently there's an appeal to find the "donut" button. At least, that's how I hear it, or want to hear it. "There's a donut button on the website?!"

        One of my flaws is forgetting that English is squishier to foreign ears. Idioms, puns, and cultural references don't translate well. Sorry. Sorry in advance for the next +inf times I do that.

        Thanks for pointing out you couldn't find the donut button. I had a tiny smile at the thought of someone looking for it, and being mildly disappointed. (I hope you didn't spend a lot of time on it though.) I'd be impressed if you did find it. (Maybe you can make a personal nodelet donut or CSS or something, and pass that around?)

        So yes, it's the donate button. We'd probably get more $donations if it was a $donuts button. Maybe I'll take that up with the PM Gods.

        Quantum Mechanics: The dreams stuff is made of

Re^3: Perl Monks monastery vs the Vatican
by choroba (Archbishop) on Dec 10, 2014 at 14:32 UTC
    You can configure your edit box. Mine is textarea {width:70em; height:35em;} (via the Display Settings).
    لսႽÜ ᥲᥒ⚪⟊Ⴙᘓᖇ Ꮅᘓᖇ⎱ Ⴙᥲ𝇋ƙᘓᖇ

      Nice, but the default should not be ten years out of date.

Re^3: Perl Monks monastery vs the Vatican
by fullermd (Priest) on Dec 10, 2014 at 22:56 UTC

    Why is the edit box so small? Because it was designed on a 640x480 machine and no one has changed it!

    Actually, my edit box is a gvim window spawned via the ViewSourceWith Firefox plugin. Because any browser textbox is gonna be miserable next to a real text editor. This reply itself is about the limit for anything I'd type without spawning something more capable than anything in the browser anyway...

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