OK, the forum is coming..

Jacques Poulin jacques.poulin at gmail.com
Tue Jul 24 20:27:50 CEST 2007

Is there a web form to search the mailing lists ?
I didn't find it, and didn't want to ask if that had been asked before, but
since I can't find the search form, well, I'm asking :-)
I prefer forums over lists because forums are a lot less distracting...  but
at least when the lists are searchable, there's a way to find the info you
want without wasting hours going through threads...
I mean, I'm getting over 10 digests every day, I can't even begin to
consider being subscribed to this list when the word spreads...
Keep the mailing lists for the developers if you like, but we need a forum
for the users.

From: Daniel Robinson [mailto:dgrobinson at dgrobinson.com] 
Sent: 24 juillet 2007 13:46
To: community at lists.openmoko.org
Subject: Re: OK, the forum is coming..

The fact that you are subscribed to 20 different mailing lists and you would
find it difficult to read all of that information on 20 different forum UIs
is your issue, and it is not the responsibility of this community to

To state, axiomatically,  that mailing lists are more efficient is to
attempt proof by assertion.

The goal is communication, not rightness.  How is communication best served?


On 7/24/07, Andreas Kostyrka <andreas at kostyrka.org> wrote: 

Hash: SHA1

No, it's just habits. And it's not about Engineers, it's about long time
email users. (I mean the generation before the invention of the "http
protocol". If one can consider HTTP 0.9 to be a protocol ;) )

And yes, email is important to these old timers. Mailing lists are quite
well standardized, there are less than half a dozen mailing list
management packages that matter, and even these have mostly the same 
behaviour. I'm subscribed on more than 20 mailing lists (most of these
in the Linux/Python/PostgreSQL realm), that I follow more or less
depending upon work pressure. I can keep a tab on these mailing lists, 
because they use a standard interface.

Navigating 20 different "forums", is not feasible:

- -) I need to actively pull information. That's time I could be already
using to read messages. 

- -) the UI of forums is really not uniform. I need to join, login
(depending upon the forum and my browser setting each time, every 2
weeks, never), manage to find if new messages that might interest me, ... 

- -) the UI of mailing lists is my known standard mail client.

You can see the difference, e.g. my wife participates in a forum based
cooking community. Notice: "relative newcomer" (less than a decade 
Internet experience), 1 community (not dozens of mailing lists needed).

Basically, mailing lists are more efficient. Not necessarily easy on
newbies. (And yes, efficient does not mean easy. Efficient is measured 
in units like "transaction" per "time unit". And I can clearly "process"
(or decide not to "process") more messages per hour in my mailer than
with my browser)


Daniel Robinson wrote:
> What is it about engineers that they act like any idea other than theirs
> is not worthy of consideration?
> I don't know any of you, and I am only responding to this email because 
> it is typical of the kind of traffic that has been going back and forth
> about this issue.
> Don't build your house on ice?  This is typical of the dismissiveness
> with which people have responded about this issue.  The straw man being 
> used here, that wanting one position or the other is as meritorious as
> building one's house on ice, is not valid.  It smacks of sanctimony and
> that should be avoided.
> On 7/24/07, *Ted Lemon* <mellon at fugue.com <mailto:mellon at fugue.com>>
>     > Quite frankly I am completely, totally, 
>     > overwhelmingly baffled at the resistance to the forums.  Quite a few
>     > people have expressed their dislikes of mailing lists and how they
>     were
>     > *very* reluctant (like myself) to join. 
>     Worrying about your email address being exposed is pretty silly.
>     That's like worrying that the ice on a pond will break when it melts
>     the spring and your house will fall in.   Don't build your house on 
>     ice.
>     As for forums, they are very nice for casual use.   They are terrible
>     for staying in touch, unless you visit them obsessively.   The nice
>     thing about a mailing list is that the mail keeps arriving in your 
>     inbox, you see it go by, and you can pay attention or not as you
>     And if you miss something, it's easy to go back and find it.
>     Forums aren't bad - they're just different.   I think it would be
>     if the casual traffic migrated to a forum.
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>     community at lists.openmoko.org <mailto:community at lists.openmoko.org>
>     http://lists.openmoko.org/mailman/listinfo/community
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