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Cool deal Norm||Josh. That solves half my issues with the new forum. Now, if only coming in from www.ridgid.com and clicking on "Forum" would not spawn a new window in Internet Explorer 6.0, my trouble ticket could be closed. [img]smile.gif[/img]
Do you ever think there might be too many WW forums in Shop Talk?
If there were only 3-4 forums, the overall interest level and posting rates would be higher. You would only have to visit a few places to see the status of more topics.
I could be all wet on this, but... it seems that Tips and Techniques, Ask the Woodworking Experts, and even Ask the Power Tool Experts, could be consolidated.
I'm not sure most of us see the distinction between Portable Power Tools and the Woodworker's Corner, as discussion topics. I could be totally wrong about that, but to me there's ww/diy tools, and then there's plumbing & HVAC stuff (nothing against those ol' boys but they're into a different thing). So in the WW section ya basically got tool stuff, and how-to ww stuff. Both good, and I'd like to take 'em all in at a glance.
If things were more consolidated, more people would see more titles more readily, and discussions might range a little wider.
Henry Ford's "Have any color you want as long as it's black" syndrome? How about Baskin & Robbins 3 Flavors (Vanilla, Chocolate, Strawberry)? I like the variety. Maybe this can help:
When you first enter the forum home page, in the top right corner is a link Today's Active Topics http://www.ridgid.com/cgi-bin/ultima...?ubb=get_daily . Click on it and get the most recent entries in reverse chronology. If you check in at least daily, you can see the subjects that have new posts.
Been thinking about this, and I still think there are too many sub-forums.
Reason #1: "Search" is either by individual forum, or the whole site. I want to Search all of Woodworking, because I don't know which WW forum contains the nugget I am mining, except that it's not Plumbing or HVAC. The Search function is slow as-is (common to most UBB sites) and very proud of itself, updating me each time it has finished SeeSnake or News and Events with zero results as I look for ZCI info.
Reason #2 (related): Because there is so much overlap and duplication between forums, a poster may put good information in any one of 3-4 places. He isn't sure where to put it, so I am not sure where to Search for it. Harping on the ZCI theme, does that go under Tips & Techniques, General Woodworking, General Discussion, Ask the Woodworking Experts, or General Power Tool Discussion (which is under Portable but has an awfully "general" sound to it)?
Reason #3: Today's Active Posts causes me to miss older posts I may have overlooked earlier, because I am not looking at the whole subforum. I read every day, but only things that interest me at the moment. Seeing older headers prompts me to click and read when things are slower or I have more time.
Thus, reason #4: I like the variety, too. There is more variety in seeing the spectrum of WW topics stacked up in one or two places, than having them shotgunned across the whole gamut of ambiguous or redundant categories. I can skip stuff I'm not interested in, but I can't browse stuff I don't see.
Consequently, #5: There is a greater sense of activity and community, and from Ridgid's point of view more excitement, in lots of fresh WW posts and new topics in a few places. There are some pretty dead subfora. The action tends to gravitate to General Woodworking, so why not concentrate the traffic in just a couple of spots? New users see a helluva lot going on, regulars get the big picture quick.
Gratuitous #6: Less maintenance and quicker response for Moderators and other Host officials.
Just my opinion. Still reading and waiting for my Search results, no matter what. [img]smile.gif[/img]