This was my very first helpful forum. What was yours?

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#1 jimzcoder   User is offline

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This was my very first helpful forum. What was yours?

Post icon  Posted 17 September 2021 - 06:23 AM

Good day dreamincoders. I have been in this for quite a while now, been to shit of when a typhoon hit my country really way back 2013 and I even had to do lumber jack works just to feed my family, no harm meant to all our beloved lumber jacks but my profession was more on computers. Imagine working on your computer for almost every hour of the day for your beloved company and then one day they cannot sell or get any profit from anything. Kudus to my previous employer who didn`t even consider laying off any employee during those hard times. They didn`t even had enough to feed their families but still they continued to support their employees. Now my very question is why are lesser people visiting this website/forum? Is there something wrong with the community?(which I don`t think so). I`m very thankful for being a part of this community it helped me alot in my life. Modi_123, jon_keparsky, Benign and more really helped me a lot(I`m sorry if I spelled your names wrong. My real concern here is why is this forum getting lesser engagement than the others? Where in fact this the most realistic and most helpful forum I`ve ever considered. PS i`ve been thru other forums but this one is really unique. You don`t just get the answers but you`ll learn how and why, so why? Why is this not getting the engagements it truly deserves to have?

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Replies To: This was my very first helpful forum. What was yours?

#2 NeoTifa   User is online

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Re: This was my very first helpful forum. What was yours?

Posted 17 September 2021 - 06:27 AM

Probably because SO is taking over. Sorry to hear about the typhoon :( Glad to see you back, though.
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#3 jon.kiparsky   User is offline

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Re: This was my very first helpful forum. What was yours?

Posted 17 September 2021 - 07:20 AM

Thanks for dropping in, good to hear that you're hanging in there.

I think Neo's diagnosis is at least 70% of the answer, maybe more. When the easy answers are at SO, people don't ask the easy questions here. I think also there's been a shift away from engaging with other human beings directly, and more towards watching and creating tutorials, be they in written or video form. IMO, this is a dead loss, but it's what people want, so it's what they get.
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#4 supersloth   User is offline

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Re: This was my very first helpful forum. What was yours?

Posted 17 September 2021 - 07:42 AM

it was this one, 20 years ago.
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#5 BetaWar   User is online

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Re: This was my very first helpful forum. What was yours?

Posted 17 September 2021 - 07:50 AM

I agree with Jon and Neo's analysis above. Basically, people don't look for engaging communities to ask questions and grow anymore, they look for instant gratification and solutions.

In my attempts at making some medium-form content (15-20 minute) youtube video tutorials, I can tell you that my average watch time is about 1.5 minutes. However, if I cut the tutorial length by 1/3 (to 7 minutes), my average watch time doubles. I suspect (not tested yet) that if I cut the video time to ~1 minute and take advantage of the YT shorts stuff, I will get nearly 100% view time of the videos... I just won't be able to convey nearly the knowledge in that time. But people don't seem to be wanting knowledge, they want the quick solution and to move on.

My fiancee put it well: She would rather watch 3-5 5-minute videos in hopes of finding her answer than 1 20-minute video that gives her everything she needs to know.

And, then, there is just the "I need an answer now" crowd... I have been running a number of interviews recently, and you would be amazed how many people go straight to stack overflow with a question, read only a few sentences of an answer, and then copy the code that they think will help them; even when it literally says a line or two lower that it specifically doesn't do what they want it to; or they copy the client portion instead of the server portion, or any other number of things. People literally don't have the patience to read.
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#6 jon.kiparsky   User is offline

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Re: This was my very first helpful forum. What was yours?

Posted 17 September 2021 - 08:06 AM

View Postsupersloth, on 17 September 2021 - 09:42 AM, said:

it was this one, 20 years ago.



Damn. Just looked, there isn't a 20-year tenure award.

Nice to see you, sloth, hope you're well.
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#7 NeoTifa   User is online

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Re: This was my very first helpful forum. What was yours?

Posted 17 September 2021 - 08:23 AM

View PostBetaWar, on 17 September 2021 - 10:50 AM, said:

My fiancee put it well: She would rather watch 3-5 5-minute videos in hopes of finding her answer than 1 20-minute video that gives her everything she needs to know.


I'm like this, simply as it gives less time commitment if I need to break for a few. Also, if you need to come back for reference, it's easier to find what you're looking for.
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#8 jon.kiparsky   User is offline

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Re: This was my very first helpful forum. What was yours?

Posted 17 September 2021 - 08:33 AM

Personally, I don't have time to listen to something that I can read 5-10 times faster than they can say it out loud, so I only watch a video if there's a good reason for it to be a video - usually, for me, that means pretty high-level stuff. Go-to example would be Tony Hoare's "Billion Dollar Mistake" talk, or Jim Weirich's famous Y-combinator video.
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#9 supersloth   User is offline

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Re: This was my very first helpful forum. What was yours?

Posted 17 September 2021 - 10:06 AM

View Postjon.kiparsky, on 17 September 2021 - 09:06 AM, said:

View Postsupersloth, on 17 September 2021 - 09:42 AM, said:

it was this one, 20 years ago.



Damn. Just looked, there isn't a 20-year tenure award.

Nice to see you, sloth, hope you're well.



thanks bud, you too.

it was funny, yesterday i was thinking about how there really aren't that many pictures of me from age like, 12-20. upon reflection of why that was, it was like "duh because you were on the computer creating a lot of forum post history, you fucking nerd". that led me to realize chris started this site 20 years ago and i popped over here to see what was up, and lo and behold, this thread.

i think everyone is right tho, everyone just wants the answers, not the community or the internal culture that comes with it. that's always what i liked about dreamincode in my time here, creating a culture. that's how i realized i run my teams now too.
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#10 Martyr2   User is offline

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Re: This was my very first helpful forum. What was yours?

Posted 17 September 2021 - 10:40 AM

Well I don't doubt that SO is a great resource and takes over much of the "quick solution" category, but I don't think it is nearly as dominating as the others here say. I am a member on other boards like DIC and they are moving just as fast as DIC use to. The problem is that DIC is very dated, buggy and can be a bit harder to use sometimes. It also lacks many of the newer features that make boards fun. I mean just look at Discourse, they offer automatic badges, better code editing features with syntax highlighting etc. Their maintainers are also much more active and not bogged down in all the years of legacy code.

I have said it before and I will say it again, DIC needs a much needed overhaul and rework. If they can keep the content too, that would immediately put DIC head and shoulders above many forums. But to say SO is a big reason this forum is not seeing the traffic it use to is not entirely accurate. There is definitely a market still for forums other than SO. Discourse has been a very successful platform and is used by many very active boards like sitepoint.com.

DIC still has some dormant potential that needs to just be realized, but unless Chris and the senior staff really can put in the time to bring it back, the board is just "existing". Hey, DIC is still awesome even if it is not as active, but I just wanted to state the truth as I see it and as someone who is very active on other coding boards other than DIC and SO. :)

P.S. I wouldn't say my first forum was your typical forum, but more like a chat channel on IRC. DIC is one of my first serious forums for being an answerer though.

This post has been edited by Martyr2: 17 September 2021 - 10:47 AM

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#11 jon.kiparsky   User is offline

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Re: This was my very first helpful forum. What was yours?

Posted 17 September 2021 - 11:04 AM

View Postsupersloth, on 17 September 2021 - 12:06 PM, said:

"duh because you were on the computer creating a lot of forum post history, you fucking nerd".


YOU WERE MAKING HISTORY!
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#12 no2pencil   User is offline

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Re: This was my very first helpful forum. What was yours?

Posted 17 September 2021 - 11:20 AM

This was the first forum that I joined & interacted with. Before that I was primarily in irc chatrooms.

I think that this place is dormant, as others have said SO has a different version of interactivity, however I believe more-over the issue is that development is really a slowing field. Most people seem to favor social media, which is a closed course/hosted platform. Very few people seem to be wanting to develop/progress websites, & even fewer with system applications (like Windows/Mac). When I had a repair shop I saw the decline of computers, I then saw the decline of laptops, as the usage of phones & tables has risen. Just my opinion, for whatever that is worth.

Glad that you found Dream In Code useful when you needed it.
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#13 NeoTifa   User is online

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Re: This was my very first helpful forum. What was yours?

Posted 17 September 2021 - 11:29 AM

I wouldn't mind trying to throw my hat in the ring for assisting on an overhaul.

This post has been edited by NeoTifa: 17 September 2021 - 11:29 AM

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#14 Skydiver   User is offline

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Re: This was my very first helpful forum. What was yours?

Posted 17 September 2021 - 11:52 AM

I am also predicting a coming wave of low-code/no-code type of development which will require some kind of forum to provide help. DIC can potentially get into the ground floor of that, but it needs to shed some of the "antiquated" look and feel of a standard coding forum.
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#15 Sheepings   User is offline

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Re: This was my very first helpful forum. What was yours?

Posted 28 September 2021 - 11:19 AM

I think I joined here a year after Skydiver. I don't like any coding forum, I find them all intolerable, full of know it all's, smart arses and dicks. This was the only website I thoroughly preferred to post on. I normally only last a month or two on other forums.

I agree with Pencil. This website is dormant but largely because of its design, and dated 90's look which is in dire need of changing. I don't understand why the site owner won't just update it. Is he aware how easy it is to port data to other platforms? Because it really doesn't matter if this site is heavily modded with custom mods or not. Ie the rep system, etc, all this data can be migrated to a more modern but different, better forum software.

Plus its not like the owner never had previous offers for someone to do this for him. So why doesn't he allow those with experience to chime in to build up a new DIC and give this one a much needed makeover? I was one of those few people who previously offered to port DIC to a new modernised forum platform when I had more time on my hands to undertake such a task. Sadly I am a bit more time constrained these days. This isn't a plug, but just to show what DIC could have looked like today if I got the go-ahead to build a new DIC forum (keeping all the old topics and posts too) : http://prntscr.com/1tz22l2 with a question/answer feature : http://prntscr.com/1tz4n6e and it also has a rep system which I added in, and a tutorial section : http://prntscr.com/1tz7qch - It's a self-help coding forum built on the same principles as DIC but I don't have the time to run it so it's sitting there idle when it could be put to good use. Chances are I will let the domain expire and delete the project year end.
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