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PerlMonks More than just a Perl resource?

by jcwren (Prior)
on Oct 06, 2000 at 20:28 UTC ( #35596=monkdiscuss: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

In the time since served it's first article, and hopefully exceeded vrooms hopes for a successful website (or worst nightmare...), has evolved to a enjoyable community of characters, replete with wizards, goddesses, regexp genuises, armed programmers, irritable sysadmins, masters of trivia, and camel jockeys.

What this also represents is a phenominal resource of non-Perl knowledge also. While the idea of creating new sections has usually been frowned on in the past (and of course, I can't find any links to any relevant articles, so I'll have to trust my faulty memory), I'd like to propose a new section, General Stuff (Well, OK, it needs a better title...)

This section would be for non-Perl questions, be non-votable, and would NOT support posts from Anonymous Monks. I imagine it as a place where someone (like me, at the moment) can post a question about DNS ('cause I know Ozymandias knows the answer!) problems.

Along that vein, I've been programming micro controllers for 14^wmany years, and I know that j.a.p.h. has just bought a PIC (it's a microprocessor) kit. I'm more than willing to answer questions in that arena, which is something I know a little about.

I think y'all get the idea. We've got far too much brain power out here to let it go to waste, but I also don't want to pollute the Perl-space of with off-topic posts in the main sections, or cause the site to lose it's Perl-centricity.



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  • Comment on More than just a Perl resource?

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(Ovid - what's wrong with my carburator?)
by Ovid (Cardinal) on Oct 06, 2000 at 20:48 UTC
    That's an interesting idea and I like it. My only concern would be how quickly that section would fill up. Perhaps only archive the posts for about a month or so? Otherwise, I could easily see a "fix-all" section that people start swamping.

    Don't get me wrong, I like the idea of my occasionally being able to post a JavaScript or "what's wrong with my car's carburator?" (just kidding) question. However, I'd be concerned if people started viewing this as a permanent resource, as opposed to a one-shot "can you help me" sort of thing.


    Update: Ooh! Looks like a nice compromise that vroom's listed. Plus, it sounds like this may even be a reality some day...

    Join the Perlmonks Setiathome Group or just go the the link and check out our stats.

      Perhaps one solution to this would be that only logged in users could see or access this section... provided it ever happens. That way people who are actively involved in Perl Monks can help each other out but people will only find this site if they're looking for a good Perl resource.

      I'd also be interested in seeing how this section might be organized.

      vroom | Tim Vroom |

        I think a good way to pick out the "actively involved" perl monks would be to use your XP system. Perhaps initiates and novices would not be able to see the section at all, acolytes and scribes could read but not post, and monks and up can post. I think this will encourage people to log in and contribute to the perl knowledge base before diverging into different interests.

        Besides, it looks like we're getting quite a number of monks and above around here.

      I agree with the concern of how quickly this would fill? In some ways, isn't that what the function of the Chatterbox?

      Brother Frankus.
        Chatterbox is far too transient. I find that even if I go check e-mail for a few minutes and come back, I've missed entire conversations. Chatterbox also tends to be ultra-OT at times, whereas this section will hopefully be merely OT. :)
RE (tilly) 1: More than just a Perl resource?
by tilly (Archbishop) on Oct 09, 2000 at 01:23 UTC
    Having been part of another site that did something like this, I have to admit to mixed feelings.

    On the one hand we have a large pool of competent people who probably do have other interests we share away from Perl. Should the new section come about I would bet top dollar that it will be popular. More than that, if there is a section in it with a name like "Open forum" it will be the most popular of all.

    On the other hand when you get away from Perl, what people will want to talk about are the topics which they care about most. Politics. Religion. Microsoft. But the very fact that people care means that their feelings are on the line and people will get upset.

    I have seen this scenario before. A lot of interesting stuff will be said. It will be popular. People will get upset and leave.

RE: More than just a Perl resource?
by KM (Priest) on Oct 06, 2000 at 20:32 UTC
    I think this is a good idea. There would simply need to be an OT section with subsections (like the Code Catacombs section). Of course, if you know a specific person will know an answer, currently, you could just leave them a msg in t he chatterbox.


RE: More than just a Perl resource?
by extremely (Priest) on Oct 07, 2000 at 04:07 UTC
    Call it "! Perl" and you got yourself a winnah! I like the idea of having a place for the stuff that has no other place. It has a beautifully self-contradictory feel to it.

    $you = new YOU;
    honk() if $you->love(perl)

(jcwren) RE: More than just a Perl resource?
by jcwren (Prior) on Oct 07, 2000 at 07:00 UTC
    I'm not so sure about having departments/sections for things. I'd like to believe that we can use intelligent subject lines, and refrain from changing 'My carburator problems' to 'Natalie Portman rocks my intake manifold'.

    I agree that new nodes should NOT appear in the site Newest Nodes, but should perhaps have it's own newest nodes page.

    I would imagine that this section wouldn't have anywhere near the traffic that the rest of the site does (with the possible exception of the FAQ, which no one seems to read...), so rather than imposing a large programming overhead on vroom or possibly chromatic (who has been doing some site mods), we could (attempt to) manage it ourselves by avoiding pointless postings, and by using useful subject lines.

    Along the content lines, a lot of people keep mentioning IT only type subjects. I'd like to say it could be anything. Perhaps we could create a specialties page that we all list our areas of expertise (I've rebuilt a few engines in my time, punched out a lot .308 rounds, hacked micro controllers, and know a bit about houseboat maintainence). So, for the moment, let's not say it's only computing related topics.


    e-mail jcwren
RE: More than just a Perl resource?
by acid06 (Friar) on Oct 07, 2000 at 01:12 UTC
    It's a great idea. I know that you can ask off topic questions (or whatever) in the chatterbox... however only the monks who are currently logged in see it, and it only lasts for a very short period.
    Just to end my post... IMHO PerlMonks is not only just a Perl Resource, it's a community too!
(redmist) RE: More than just a Perl resource?
by redmist (Deacon) on Oct 07, 2000 at 02:12 UTC
    I love this idea. I certainly agree with the idea that only Monks and above should be able to view and post. Perhaps, in order to maintain the Perl-centricity of it all, there should be a mandatory Perl solution (ie Q: "What's wrong with my car's carburator?", A: "What you need to do is write a scipt with such and such code and update the cars firmware, and it should work fine.") ;)

    I think PM is super, and would love to learn about microcontrollers and other wonderful subjects from the same people who provide me with wisdom on Perl related issues.

RE: More than just a Perl resource?
by TStanley (Canon) on Oct 07, 2000 at 07:01 UTC
    I think this is a great idea. Each of us has special knowledge
    in some area relating to IT, whether it is programming,
    system administration, or anything else. There is a great
    deal of information floating around in the form of the monks
    who populate this site, and we should take advantage
    of it.

    There can be only one!
RE: More than just a Perl resource?
by 2501 (Pilgrim) on Oct 07, 2000 at 06:48 UTC
    I think AgentM is on the right track with having specific catagories and not just a "!perl" (interesting as it is to see what hits the top of his list for areas of concern :P:P)
    I would be very interested in swapping computer knowledge in some areas, but not in others, and having to weed through a bunch of stuff I really don't want to read in order to posts that do interest me would more then likely just cause me to skip the whole section.

    how about this:
    Hacking (as in 'I am trying to write a perl intrepeter for my TI-85', not Cracking. A place for hobby code)

    These might be a good place to start. They are all still indirectly perl related and it will allow the community to monitor the affects of non-perl related sections into the web site. If those go well, THEN I would suggest branching out for weird areas like "Ovid's Garage" and "Used Firearms Classifieds".
    BTW, I would also like to suggest that if non-perl groupings appear that we have a "!perl Newest Nodes" to keep site content seperate to a degree to allow for easier access to perl information.

    P.S. If you haven't guessed already, I thought the !Perl term was fantastic:P
RE: More than just a Perl resource?
by royalanjr (Chaplain) on Oct 07, 2000 at 01:04 UTC
    Sounds like a very good idea!

    Roy Alan

RE: More than just a Perl resource?
by AgentM (Curate) on Oct 07, 2000 at 05:17 UTC
    Perhaps subsections could include: (by platform, etc.)
    • Linux
    • UNIX98/POSIX
    • BSD/SYSV
    • Mac 9/X/MacPerl specifics
    • EE
    • Women
    • Job
    • Why Windows is wonderful.
    • Cars
    • completely irrelevant and irreverant
    There should probably be more but I definitely agree that the web space should be limited for these portals. This is, after all, PerlMonks.ORG. (did anyone ever try reading that out loud? perlmonks orgy?)
    AgentM Systems or Nasca Enterprises is not responsible for the comments made by AgentM- anywhere.
      AgentM: "Why Windows is wonderful."

      Don't forget, "Why the earth is flat"... ;-)

      Update: Heheh... just a friendly joke, you know... you don't have to vote me down. *ducks flying fruit*

      Subsections would be good eventually, but create them as you go. High traffic topics will evolve naturally. If you spread into a bunch of artificial categories, topics would lack the critical mass necessary to promote discussion.

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