About the recent forum changes

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Mike Roque
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Location: Sacramento, CA

About the recent forum changes

Post by Mike Roque »

Everyone uses the site in different ways, and we're dealing with very complex information that can be structured in many different ways. The goal here is to structure it in such a way that makes it as accessible as possible for the majority of viewers.

The impetus for these changes started with a realization that there are a large number of forums that see very little traffic. These forums add to clutter on the main forum page making it harder to sift through the mass of information here. We compared all the forums using average number of posts per day and other objective metrics combined with our own subjective judgement to decide which forums to consolidate and/or reorganize. We also made some adjustments to some categories' names and positions to improve the order and flow of forum categories on the main forum page.

Keeping RAILROAD.NET well-organized is a continuous process. Every once in a while things need to change...hopefully for the better.
Last edited by Mike Roque on Tue Jan 16, 2007 9:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Mike Roqué
Road Foreman of Engines
Placerville & Sacramento Valley Railroad

Mike Roque
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Location: Sacramento, CA

Post by Mike Roque »

Dieter wrote:Clearly from the red warnings up top, somebody's had enough!
We just get a lot of questions about things that have already been covered or are "forum basics". The red type is only there to catch people's attention and aid them in getting the help they need.
Dieter wrote:Let's have a nice game of "How Do You Confuse A FOAMER?" and re-juggle all the boards each week.
It's not very often that we shake up the forums. In fact, I don't think we've ever done it on this scale.

We just had too many relatively inactive forums. We obliged many forum requests under the auspices of future popularity that never came.
Mike Roqué
Road Foreman of Engines
Placerville & Sacramento Valley Railroad

Noel Weaver
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Location: Pompano Beach, Florida

Post by Noel Weaver »

Mike and Otto, thanks for doing a good job with this, you put up with a lot
and I can appreciate your efforts.
To the others, this is a private site and is fully paid for and supported by
others for our benefit. We are not paying to use this so we use and enjoy
it by terms set by others, our use of this means to me that we fully accept
all of the rules, terms and conditions that are established by the leaders.
If there are folks on here who do not agree with the above, perhaps they
should find another forum.
Noel Weaver

matthewsaggie
Posts: 470
Joined: Thu Jun 24, 2004 9:11 pm
Location: Matthews NC

Post by matthewsaggie »

Thanks for the changes, especially putting Amtrak near the top of the page, to save scrolling down over and over. Other improvements look good.

keeper1616
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Location: Sacramento, CA

Post by keeper1616 »

A few things -

1) Is it possible to add the mod that lets people order the forums the way they want to? I've seen this on a few other forums.

2) We've been talking about nixing the Hot Spots forum, but no discussion of nixing DCC forum.... What happened to all those topics? I don't see them in the Model Railroading forum...

I trust you guys are on top of the changes, but I don't want to see any information to be lost...
~~~Cyrus~~~

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Otto Vondrak
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Post by Otto Vondrak »

Matthew, there shouldn't be any scrolling to visit the Amtrak forum... it's featured top of the list on the home page...

... does anyone ever look at the home page?

-otto-
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scopelliti
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Location: Big Flats, NY

Post by scopelliti »

Since we moved the discussion over here... I'll ask again. Did the DCC threads get moved somewhere?

Scale Model Railroading would seem a likely spot.
Pat

Mike Roque
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Location: Sacramento, CA

Post by Mike Roque »

Cyrus,
keeper1616 wrote:1) Is it possible to add the mod that lets people order the forums the way they want to? I've seen this on a few other forums.
I'll look into it.
keeper1616 wrote:2) We've been talking about nixing the Hot Spots forum, but no discussion of nixing DCC forum.... What happened to all those topics? I don't see them in the Model Railroading forum...
Yes, we decided to consolidate the DCC forum into the Scale forum because of infrequent traffic...the topics are older, but there. There's one here, here, and here.
Mike Roqué
Road Foreman of Engines
Placerville & Sacramento Valley Railroad

BaltOhio
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Location: Baltimore, MD

Post by BaltOhio »

I'd still like to see Railroad Archeology reinstated as a separate topic, where the "archeological" aspects of railroading can be put in one place. Spreading it out among individual railroads or groups of railroads puts the archeologists to a lot of work. Besides, there are often questions along the lines of "I found this old roadbed but don't know what it is" that don't fit anyone until someone answers.

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Otto Vondrak
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Post by Otto Vondrak »

That's why the "Archeology" threads were merged into the Fallen Flags forum. Is there a clear difference between the two? Some, but not all threads have been moved to individual forums where they can get better answers.

-otto-
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powerpro69

Post by powerpro69 »

I think the employment section shoul be back towards the top
I get the impression that actual railroaders are held in far less esteem than rail fans around here, almost like "the Employment" forum is in the way. Just how I see things, that's all

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GOLDEN-ARM
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Post by GOLDEN-ARM »

It took a few minutes, but the combined, and re-arranged board, has it's merits. Nice to see RAILROADS leading the way, with other forums following. Some stuff is unclear, why it was done, other stuff, crystal clear. (there's no pleasing everyone) Ultimately, it looks to be easier to navigate, and the combined topics, seem to have been in need of the action, for some time, anyways. A BIG THANKS, to those who make this place work, day to day, often with little, or no recognition. Mike, Otto and Jessie have done a terrific job, again. KUDOS................. :-D

Mike Roque
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Location: Sacramento, CA

Post by Mike Roque »

powerpro69 wrote:
I think the employment section shoul be back towards the top
I get the impression that actual railroaders are held in far less esteem than rail fans around here, almost like "the Employment" forum is in the way. Just how I see things, that's all
It's not that railroaders are second class citizens or anything of the sort...if anything, the opposite is true. We truly value the unique perspective that folks "on the inside" bring to the discussion.

It's just that employment isn't necessarily the most important topic of discussion here, both in terms of the primary purpose of the RAILROAD.NET forums (a discussion forum, not a monster.com) as well as the actual frequency of discussion topics. In fact, many of the professionals here discuss more about railroad topics than employment.
Mike Roqué
Road Foreman of Engines
Placerville & Sacramento Valley Railroad

Mike Roque
Posts: 484
Joined: Tue Mar 09, 2004 11:34 am
Location: Sacramento, CA

Post by Mike Roque »

Oh, and thank you all for the kind words. We really hope you enjoy RAILROAD.NET. :-D
Mike Roqué
Road Foreman of Engines
Placerville & Sacramento Valley Railroad

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Otto Vondrak
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Post by Otto Vondrak »

"I get the impression that actual railroaders are held in far less esteem than rail fans around here..."

Nothing could be farther from the truth. We appreciate everyone's contributions, and we especially appreciate the contributions of the railroaders who help the railfans get the facts straight.

Can't say it enough times: The apparent "position" of a forum has nothing to do with its popularity. Just because your favorite forum is no longer at the top doesn't mean its importance has dimished in any way.

-otto-
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