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Kimmo

Joint seems pretty dead lately...

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Hi dudes.

 

OK, this whole cookie login thing. I want to get it fixed, I really do, but try as I might I can't reproduce it. Since you're all techy dudes I'm sure you can help, but you'll have to bear with me.

 

Firstly, yup we do some horrible things to get single sign on working. But they seem to work OK. The only bug I know of really is that logging in in two different places seems to cause chaos (work and home PC, desktop / laptop, two browsers)... that's a tricky one to fix.

 

Secondly, our IPB security settings are pretty bare minimum otherwise it's almost impossible to trick it into looking at cookies we set (if you log into the Atomic main site).

 

Thirdly... actually, I've got nothing.

 

So basically, I've tried many combinations of: logging out, logging in on main site, flicking back and forth, logging out again, logging in on FORUMS, flicking back and forth, logging out on main site... yadda yadda, and it seems to keep me logged in just fine. Would anyone mind giving me the steps you took to cause this bug to appear? Right from the "OK I browsed to the site, I hit logout..." state. I'd prefer it if you hit logout first. And let me know what browsers you're using, it might help. ;)

 

Cheers guys. Sorry things are slow around here, priorities can be all over the place sometimes.

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Besides the work/home thing, I get the problem logging in using Chrome, then opening the site using IE. That's to be expected though I guess, but it might help pinpoint the problem.

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Besides the work/home thing, I get the problem logging in using Chrome, then opening the site using IE. That's to be expected though I guess, but it might help pinpoint the problem.

If you try to be logged in in both browsers, that'll make things upset. Maybe this is the real issue I should focus on fixing...

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well

 

I log on at home using firefox 3, (I go straight to the forums I have bookmarked)

Then if I click on the front page, I look at the articles, and even post some comments

I go back to the forum tabs, and I'm suddenly logged out.

I can log in again, and go back to the front page again, but if I post a comment, I'll be logged out of the forums again.

 

it's so annoying.

 

At work I use Portable Firefox 3. same deal. I always have to log in first thing, but going to the front page has the same effect.

 

If I go to the front page first, it's usually logged in, but then going to the forums means I have to log into the forums.

 

At my parent's house, I use IE7, and it's pretty much the same experience, I have to log in first, and resist the temptation to click through to the front page.

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well

 

I log on at home using firefox 3, (I go straight to the forums I have bookmarked)

Then if I click on the front page, I look at the articles, and even post some comments

I go back to the forum tabs, and I'm suddenly logged out.

I can log in again, and go back to the front page again, but if I post a comment, I'll be logged out of the forums again.

 

it's so annoying.

 

At work I use Portable Firefox 3. same deal. I always have to log in first thing, but going to the front page has the same effect.

 

If I go to the front page first, it's usually logged in, but then going to the forums means I have to log into the forums.

 

At my parent's house, I use IE7, and it's pretty much the same experience, I have to log in first, and resist the temptation to click through to the front page.

Aha, perhaps the issue is that you get logged out of the forums when you post a comment? That is something I can look into. :)

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The other IPB forum I use is We Got Served, once the cookie has been set on each browser, I stay logged in.

 

A lot of other sites work in the same fashion, once the cookie is set on that browser, or that computer, it stays.

 

Might be a bit late at this stage to rework the login for the front page, but not being a programmer of any merit, can't think of any way around it.

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It may have something to do with tech being less well.... hands on n dirty than before...

 

But I'm sure there'll be somethings to change that soon.

That's a a fair point. Since the explosion in popularity of modding, l33t* case LEDs and so on, manufacturers have cottoned on and now what was once DIY exclusive has been commercially made. Let's face it, most of us can't even come close to Ron Prouse levels of quality - so we opt for the cheaply made, mass produced alternative from the great red China.

 

So the focus needs to be nudged a little - I certainly don't have the time to source all the great toys, gadgets and gear and morseo, I don't have the time to test them out. That's what Atomic's for.

Speaking of time. Atomic's been around for a good 4 years or so now, and I hazard a guess that a good deal of the original population has grown up somewhat, moved on a little and has less time to idle away the hours on the web forum - leaving a void that needs to be supplied fresh blood. Atomic won't ever be what it was in the first year or so - a ragtag group of ruffians tinkering with their gear in the depths of their garages, hiding away from significant female others (mums, sisters, aunts - haha). Ahem. Nonetheless, we're at a point where it becomes clear that the status quo is going to change, like it or not. The choice is, whether it moves into a bustling online community** or stagnates into a festering pit of YouTube comments eventually burning out like so many other abandoned forums littering the web. New users will come, and wat kind of forum are they going to see? I reckon option A would be preferable.

 

I made some suggestions earlier in the inexplicably closed Why's Atomic so dead? thread, but I am no guru of web forums - so salt, grain form, is advised.

Incidentally, closing the thread seems like an odd thing to do. Girvo - the discussions ought to stay open, but posters derailing into completely irrelevant topics need to be kindly asked to contribute or find another thread (or ;) take a few hours off posting).

 

 

* I just typed l33t... Oh deary me.

** I hate that term, so much.

 

E: heh. Wrong link.

Edited by Muinztar

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Incidentally, closing the thread seems like an odd thing to do. Girvo - the discussions ought to stay open, but posters derailing into completely irrelevant topics need to be kindly asked to contribute or find another thread (or ;) take a few hours off posting).

Agreed.

 

Why gag a whole useful and interesting thread just because Skull can't work out where the Mobile Technology Forum is?

 

Especially when another user had already told him he was going to get the thread locked, and helped him find the right place to continue the discussion.

Edited by just_some_guy

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I support the lock - certainly looked to me like others had derailed the conversation, and as you've both discovered, the same discussion fits in quite nicely here.

 

Of course, there's also the question a harder moderation regime coming in and beating up individual posters - I'm getting hints that some people would like harder modding. But, if I've learnt one thing here, if we follow that suggestion, we'll get an equally vocal but different set of people arguing against it.

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Meh, it's always a bit dead late on the weekend nights.

 

Normally if it picks up we complain that it's school holidays or something because the extra amount of stuff in there is just plain crap.

What? Why's everyone looking at me? :P

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Of course, there's also the question a harder moderation regime coming in and beating up individual posters - I'm getting hints that some people would like harder modding. But, if I've learnt one thing here, if we follow that suggestion, we'll get an equally vocal but different set of people arguing against it.

Very true.

 

So...

 

Faced with a situation where you're damned if you do, and damned if you don't... the only sensible option is the one which you believe will most likely to lead to the best outcome for your forum.

 

My 2 Euros is...

 

Lack of standards (or more accurately, lack of enforcement of standards by users, moderators and staff) just leads to low quality content, which in turn leads to a dead forum.

Edited by just_some_guy

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Fair enough.

 

So, perhaps some form of enforcement as to the literal quality of threads?

 

The problem lies with that however is what may seem like a pointless spam thread to begin with may spawn a very good discussion. But then, perhaps the discussion would've taken place with a better OP anyway?

 

Hrm.

 

I think I need to sleep and think on it.

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Incidentally, in response to just_some_guy's reference to clicks and ad-revenue, I'm actually very pleased to say that clicks are, on average, up, and ad revenue is way, way up.

Awesome to hear.

 

I know we can all look forward to some of that incermental revenue being directed to site upgrades, POTM and other things that reflect the growing importance of the site to Atomic.

 

Oh, and and those anniversary t-shirts...

 

;)

 

Only just saw this topic - 2 things:

1. I was only gumpy about the website when I go reset and it shows that i started in 2008 - I started around ep 10!

2. Its been a long time since a decent watercooling article. It's hard to get in Australia - sites are closing down and it's hard to get good aussie opinions.

and 3. I haven't been blowing up too much because the spelling in the mag has improved in the last 5 episodes, which was my biggest piss-off :)

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The problem lies with that however is what may seem like a pointless spam thread to begin with may spawn a very good discussion.

Yes, Elvenwhore was advancing that proposition in the other thread.

 

But think of it this way... Even in the (rare) event that some gem emerges out of the arse end of a crap thread... there's still going to be a crap thread squatting there on your page. The ongoing presence of that crap thread is effectively your endorsement that "crap threads are ok", and a tacit encouragment to people to post more crap threads.

 

Wouldn't it be better to shut down the crap in the first instance? At least you'd be left with more good threads than bad. AND you'd discourage the posting of crap. AND I think the evident quality would attract more quality threads, too.

 

Well, that's my theory, based on all the forums I've seen in operation.

Edited by just_some_guy

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If a thread isn't "quality" enough then don't post in it, nice and simple.

 

I could launch into a discussion of how arbitrary a ranking of quality is, butI'm tired and my brain is melting out of my ears.

 

I will say this, though, the "What's on your mind?" thread is one of the best things to happen to The Green Room in, well, it's entire life. In days gone by one out of every twenty posts in that thread would have spawned it's own thread of limited scope. These days however, they all stay in one central place and don't crap up our green room.

 

Rob.

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If a thread isn't "quality" enough then don't post in it, nice and simple.

Yes, that's what happens at the moment.

 

And so we end up with a forum full of crap threads pushing the few quality threads off the page, where they are never seen.

 

And quality posters opting out, and posting elsewhere.

Edited by just_some_guy

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I think I'm starting to work out why he, the Big O and all the other alts I apparently am dont post anymore.

Edited by just_some_guy

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Maybe I'm missing these hordes of 'crap' threads cause I'm only on the Green Room, but I don't quite see the situation as that drastic.

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Maybe I'm missing these hordes of 'crap' threads cause I'm only on the Green Room, but I don't quite see the situation as that drastic.

Yeah, I'm shorthanding it a bit.

 

It's easier to write 'crap threads' than it is to keep writing 'steadily increasing trend of crap threads outnumbering quality threads, and quality threads being quickly derailed and then locked due to the increasingly abberant and contra-FAQ behaviour of the Tard Army.'

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Well, here's the thing. The downward trend is something that is, what? Six months old? Any change in moderation - if that is indeed the correct course of action - would not show an effect until a similar period has passed. It might even - and I'm happy to admit here that forum management is a black art (and considering the black arts that print journalism is rife with, that's saying something) - add to the problem.

 

Things trend up and down - it's natural. Continuous upward growth is, I think, almost impossible to attain. According to my stats, new registrations are up, while post stats are down from last year but steady for the moment. There are so many factors at play here that trying to say "here's the one thing you need to do" and expecting it work is, to be honest, delusional.

 

Personally, here are my goals: simply be more present, more responsive and open to discussion on the forums than I have been for the early part of the year. Atomic as a whole is an ever changing point of focus, shifting from print product, to web content to forum management, and we can never really hit all of those targets at once. At the moment we're all about content on the site; last year, it was all about redesigning the mag. As more things fall into place that focus will again shift. To put things in perspective, while post counts may be down, impressions on the front page are way up - swings and roundabouts - leaving the overall site (as important as the forums are, they are not the be-all-and-end-all of the Atomic brand) pretty damn healthy. Healthier than it's been for some time.

 

All that said, we are listening. The discussion of the new Pro forum is a part of that - paying attention to these threads another part. But the change cannot happen overnight.

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Continuous upward growth is, I think, almost impossible to attain.

*giggles immaturely*

 

Rob.

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Gonna have to credit that one Robzy... it was actually funny! =P

 

----

 

On topic: I may not have been around nearly as long as many of you, but I really don't see Atomic going anywhere. It seems like quite a strong community to me, despite loss of some people and all the effects of the whole GFC thing.

 

I think its a very good point David made earlier; people are buying less tech hence they're talking about it less. Sooner or later, the economy will bounce back, people will start spending again, and discussing it more -- and Haymarket won't be so tight on the purse-strings and be able to employ another person or 2, and things will only improve from there....

 

Well, that's my current opinion, and hope, anyway.

 

 

-A-

[Edit: typo]

Edited by Ashlar

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Thanks for your response. In the interests of trying to help, here are my responses to your points...

 

The downward trend is something that is, what? Six months old? Any change in moderation - if that is indeed the correct course of action - would not show an effect until a similar period has passed.

I don't agree. A trend is just 'a series of changes in the same direction'. So, you don't have to wait 6 months to see whether a change has been effective. You can know 'directionally' in a much shorter period whether something appears to be working.

 

 

It might even... add to the problem.

Or it might fix it. But with 6 months of trend now available, you can reasonably deduce that the easy option of 'doing nothing' definitely isn't going to fix it.

 

 

Things trend up and down - it's natural.

I've been here 6 months, and all I see is down. If things suddenly get better at some point, then we should both ignore anything I said on the matter. But how low are you prepared to let it go waiting for the 'natural up'? 6 months is a long time on the internet. Just comparing this to other forums, it feels to me like your baseline is lowering, not part of some natural cycle that will self correct.

 

 

Continuous upward growth is, I think, almost impossible to attain.

I just don't agree with that... relative to your current size. Look at how big some of the other forums are on the internet in Australia like eBaby and various user groups. They were all once Atomic's size too. They kept growing.

 

 

According to my stats, new registrations are up, while post stats are down from last year but steady for the moment.

New people being attracted by the mag, joining, not finding enough value, and leaving, while your diehard stalwarts keep talking amongst themselves...?

 

 

There are so many factors at play here that trying to say "here's the one thing you need to do" and expecting it work is, to be honest, delusional.

True. Noone is saying it's 'one thing'. But the one thing I have suggested is I think certainly part of what should be your solution. And 'doing nothing' on the basis that 'it could be lots of things' would be even more delusional.

 

 

Personally, here are my goals: simply be more present, more responsive and open to discussion on the forums than I have been for the early part of the year. Atomic as a whole is an ever changing point of focus, shifting from print product, to web content to forum management, and we can never really hit all of those targets at once. At the moment we're all about content on the site; last year, it was all about redesigning the mag. As more things fall into place that focus will again shift. To put things in perspective, while post counts may be down, impressions on the front page are way up - swings and roundabouts - leaving the overall site (as important as the forums are, they are not the be-all-and-end-all of the Atomic brand) pretty damn healthy. Healthier than it's been for some time.

All good.

 

If you're making a conscious decision that increased front page impressions are adequate offset for dying user technical forums, then I guess you're entitled to be happy with the trend.

 

Personally, and putting myself in your shoes, I'd want both to be trending up...

Edited by just_some_guy

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