Hobbyist Badges

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#1 Recoil  Icon User is offline

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Hobbyist Badges

Posted 11 June 2016 - 09:27 AM

Disclaimer: Sorry to all the people I have seen complain regarding the number of badges they have to see when a member posts, and the amount of badges takes up their entire screen. Please don't flame with contrived nonsense.

Background:
I went to ITT Tech for their Multimedia & Game Design program and switched halfway through for a straight programming major because of how much better I was at writing applications than I was Photoshop. Sadly, my experience was of very little use due to in my area there are virtually no jobs in programming, and all offers were too far away to consider. I gave the freelancing gig a shot, but was never able to compete with really low-ball bids by other freelancers in other countries. Programming has been an on/off hobby for me since then.

Not long ago I found myself here again trying to get help with something I am working on. A few posts I noticed I could throw my $0.02 in on to see if it was helpful in any way. What few instances I can see my rudimentary experience has help one or two along the way. I also noticed that while I was trying to provide assistance I was becoming more able to resolve my own coding conundrums that I was stuck on (this is just due to lack of experience). The more I try to help with someone else's issues was taking me away from my own stuff long enough to gain a different perspective.

Why another badge?:
Recently I was trying to provide assistance with one new member, and an obviously much more advanced member came in and provided much better advice that I either neglected to mention, or just did not know about at all. That is what has lead to this idea. I think it would be great to have a "Hobbyist" badge of some sort which can inform new members to the site seeking help that opinions being provided by some members do not come from a professional background and/or self taught people.

Granted, I have put some thought into throwing a disclaimer on my signature that my advice comes from an non-professional or hobbyist background, but thought I would through this out there anyways. Keep in mind that this forum section has the description "Post suggestions and ideas for Dream.In.Code here." just in case it plagues you why I would recommend this at all

Thanks for reading yet another one of my glorious wall-o-text's >.</>

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Replies To: Hobbyist Badges

#2 modi123_1  Icon User is online

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Re: Hobbyist Badges

Posted 11 June 2016 - 09:43 AM

Thanks for the thread. We'll take it under advisement.
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#3 tlhIn`toq  Icon User is offline

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Re: Hobbyist Badges

Posted 11 June 2016 - 09:50 AM

Huh?

All the people complaining about he number of badges? Who are these masses of people and where are they complaining... I haven't seen a single post about this until now. So maybe I'm not subscribing to the right 'complaint forum'. Can you share some links for all these people complaining about lots of badges?

Taking up their entire screen. - Wow.. How small is the monitor? Are we talking about cell phone viewing of the web site? Even then isn't it still proportinate? So the badges would be like 2% of the total page? The space for the badges whether you have a badge or not. If not, then its mostly white space below your statistics. So how would reducing the number of badges or adding more change how much of their screen is taken up by that space allocation? Or am I missing something. Maybe I'm thinking something different to you. Can you include a screen shot showing someone's badges taking up the vast majority of the screen real estate?

'Hobbyist' badge - Hmm... What's the criteria then? We have 500,000 members. Most are probably students or hobbyists. What's the cut off line for who gets one and who doesn't? If you give it out whilly-nilly to 400,000 members it looses its meaning and thus the same as not having it: Which is the situation now. Doesn't the 'mentor' badge kind of serve that roll? It doesn't indicate you get paid for coding, so its not a 'professional' badge. It just indicates you've gained enough knowledge and have shared enough of it to be helpful to others. You mentor others, regardless of how you came in to that knowledge.

This post has been edited by tlhIn`toq: 11 June 2016 - 09:52 AM

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#4 andrewsw  Icon User is offline

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Re: Hobbyist Badges

Posted 11 June 2016 - 09:59 AM

Yes, it is a public forum and anyone, and everyone, is encouraged to contribute and respond. Someone could always visit a contributor's profile if they wanted to learn a little more about that person.
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#5 Recoil  Icon User is offline

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Re: Hobbyist Badges

Posted 11 June 2016 - 12:03 PM

@tlhIn`toq - I could not possibly remember where I ran across the complaints at on these forums regarding the amount of badges, but I do remember there being several opinions regarding them. I have been reading a lot of posts here lately, and a lot of them are quite old and is possible where I saw them at. My disclaimer and note at the bottom about why I posted the idea was intended to express that this was just a simple idea. No harm in that, right?

I agree with you on not understanding how the badge display takes up the entire screen because it's fine on my laptop, and I only mention this because of the posts I ran across.

FAQ:

Quote

Mentors
Members who have exhibited great expertise, leadership, professionalism, and embody the spirit and vision of Dream.In.Code are awarded the Mentor badge. Mentors are moderators in their respective forums.


I included a brief background regarding my own situation and experience, as well as an example which would explain where the idea came from, to provide my perspective on how this may be helpful in some way. The definition of a Mentor is quite a bit above what I am referring to by far.

For example, while I try to provide a professional response to programming questions, does that mean I should get a Mentor badge? No, because I am far from being an expert on anything. Should I get anything for volunteering my time to help someone out? No on that as well. The number of reputation points a member has could be used as a valid method to determine that the information being given is correct or the better information responded to on questions. However that person may have made some funny or humorously senseless posts over in Caffeine Lounge that was rep'ed.

I have no thoughts on how the criteria for this would be determined. Should the other 400k members get a badge because they have helped a half-dozen people? No. Should I get one just for recommending this idea? No on that as well. Hopefully people will have some better thoughts on this, how it should be setup, or if it would be considered at all. Will this idea be implemented for certain? I highly doubt it, but it could also lead to another idea which may be much better than this one.

At least I didn't post a suggestion for a Dunce Badge for people who are just complete idiots posting random crap because they are having a good day and want to let everyone else know. LOL
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#6 astonecipher  Icon User is offline

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Re: Hobbyist Badges

Posted 11 June 2016 - 12:28 PM

I don't know about a badge, but an ear mark in a profile may not be a bad idea. Though even that causes some issues, and being able to tame everyone saying they are this or that makes is less useful.


There are hobbyist programmers that know Just as much as professionals, there are also professionals that are stuck in their ways and use antiquated methods.

While I like the idea, implementation would be difficult to impossible, and with an updated site in the works, it adds a layer of complexity that serves no real purpose.
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#7 Recoil  Icon User is offline

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Re: Hobbyist Badges

Posted 11 June 2016 - 12:53 PM

I guess I missed that the site was being updated, so yes, probably not a good idea. I would also have to agree on the skillset of professionals vs. hobbyists, and it really does boil down to being able to demonstrate things in a cognitive way that is practical.

However, as much as I enjoy helping someone, I only feel that it is honest they understand that someone else more than likely has a much better solution than what I am able to provide regarding my experience. Perhaps just updating my profile is not such a bad idea listing my experience. I'll probably throw in a note on my signature anyways.
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#8 andrewsw  Icon User is offline

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Re: Hobbyist Badges

Posted 11 June 2016 - 01:07 PM

Personally, I will express my uncertainty in the post: "I'm not sure but..", "I believe", "IIRC", (untested) etc.. If I am confident about a post I will express it confidently. If I am subsequently corrected then I will acknowledge the fact and learn from it, hopefully gracefully ;). Don't be afraid to be wrong. Admittedly, some are more direct in telling you that you are wrong than others, but we are all here to learn as well as to guide.
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#9 andrewsw  Icon User is offline

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Re: Hobbyist Badges

Posted 11 June 2016 - 01:14 PM

OP said:

Recently I was trying to provide assistance with one new member, and an obviously much more advanced member came in and provided much better advice that I either neglected to mention, or just did not know about at all.

If we wait long enough there will always be someone who comes along with a better idea ;)
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#10 Recoil  Icon User is offline

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Re: Hobbyist Badges

Posted 11 June 2016 - 01:38 PM

View Postandrewsw, on 11 June 2016 - 03:14 PM, said:

If we wait long enough there will always be someone who comes along with a better idea ;)


Ha! I guess you picked up on reference to that post from yesterday? Yeah, it's helpful when this happens, because more often than not, it's not that I have forgotten to mention something, but I had no clue.

Often times I will just not respond at all if I cannot confidently provide a solution, because someone comes along with a better understanding of the problem than I got from reading the question.
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#11 andrewsw  Icon User is offline

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Re: Hobbyist Badges

Posted 11 June 2016 - 02:07 PM

(No, I haven't picked up a reference to a previous topic. Which one?)

If you are not confident about something, but have researched it a little, then, as I described, you could still post but admit your uncertainty. Hopefully, someone might come along and either confirm that you are correct, or add a little more information to help clarify your understanding. Admittedly, again, it might happen that someone criticises. As long as they aren't rude then you should accept this and move forward.



A little waffle..

There are times, for particular or obscure (to me) subjects, that I will investigate, and perhaps even prepare a response, but not post because the subject is alien to me. I will wait for an experienced response, and compare it to my prepared one. I might then add my own side-question to further my knowledge, or even decide to add my response if I feel reassured about it, that I'm adding something. The next time a related question comes along I feel a little more confident to contribute.

[This happened more in the early days. Nowadays I'm more likely to post and be damned, to await the brickbats!]



Quote

..because someone comes along with a better understanding of the problem than I got from reading the question.

Of course, there isn't much we can do if we've misunderstood the question, apart from reading it carefully and, more often than not, seeking some clarification because there are a host of poorly submitted questions around :whistling:
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#12 Recoil  Icon User is offline

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Re: Hobbyist Badges

Posted 11 June 2016 - 02:17 PM

This post in particular: Insert data from VB.NET to MS access

I should also note that others have come behind me and confirmed what I have said, which helps that I am providing good advice (since not everyone will respond at all or at least +rep so you know for sure).

That is great advice for composing a response and just waiting to see how it compares. I am going to start doing that, and maybe it will help me grow a bit more as I try to help out. Thanks!
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#13 snoopy11  Icon User is offline

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Re: Hobbyist Badges

Posted 19 June 2016 - 08:09 AM

Well Recoil,

We are all here to learn and grow none of us started out as experts, mentors, or moderators.

We were voted into that position by our peers that thought we had attained a certain level of knowledge.

Just because you are a Hobbyist means nothing, it is your individual skill level that's the most important thing.

If you stick around one day it will happen to you too ;)

Adding another badge of a dubious nature seems somewhat irrelevant, the current system in place is not broken, why fix it ?
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