Comments from first time / new users

  • dr nick
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Hi,

I only joined today, but have started to get into this forum, so I'd thought I'd just try to remember initial impressions before I forget them and hopefully return a favor:

Within the first few seconds/minute after registering I was a little confused as where to go next. I can't remember exactly why, but I think I originally didn't know where to click so that I could see the list of topics. Maybe a few big friendly buttons or a few simple comments on what to do and where to go within the first steps would be helpful for other newbies.

Second, when jumping to a forum, its a little annoying to select an item in the list and then be told that I selected a forum that doesn't exist. I know...I may be stupid...but I think the general assumption is that most users are. Ahem.
  • b_heyer
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Quote:
Second, when jumping to a forum, its a little annoying to select an item in the list and then be told that I selected a forum that doesn't exist. I know...I may be stupid...but I think the general assumption is that most users are. Ahem.


I've never had this problem??? Specify perhaps?
  • Bigwebmaster
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I am curious if you got the PM from me that is sent to everyone once they signup? I am worried people's popup stoppers might prevent them from noticing they have a PM. Anyway I think I should maybe include some basic help in this PM to get people along their way. Anyway let me know if you recieved that.

Second I remember someone else having that problem that you are experiencing when jumping around to other forums. I never get that error. Are you jumping from posts? or from categories?
  • Bigwebmaster
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Actually I think I know what you are doing. You are selecting the General areas that the forums lie in and then you are hitting the go button. So for instance if this is listed:

Operating Systems
--------------------------
Microsoft Windows
Unix / Linux

You are selecting Operating Systems and hitting GO. That is indeed not a category, the actual categories would be Microsoft Windows and Unix / Linux which lie in the Operating Systems area. I could probably work to make this a little less confusing. Please let me know if this is exactly what you are doing. Thanks.
  • dr nick
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Yeah...I'm basically selecting the

Jump to: [ Select a form ]

and instead of selecting a category, I might want to jump to, say "General Topics".

Of course, I don't do that anymore, but it does seem intuitive to be able to select a bigger general category rather than directly having to specify the subcategory
  • dr nick
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Another stupid thing I recently did was post a reply to a forum (the competition suggestion page). I was reading through it and stopped on the last one on the page, so I thought I was actually going to answer to that one.

After posting it I realize that I'm put on page 3 and it no longer bears a relevance (unfortunately, I replied a "following on a similar trend", which is probably going to make a few readers go ???)

So...the logical suggestion would be either to:
1) Make it clearer that the forum continues on another page, possibly by adding a 'next' link directly after the last post for the page
2) Have some kind of 'idiot user' filter, so that only those who know what they are doing are allowed to post something
  • Bigwebmaster
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Post 3+ Months Ago

You can always go in and edit your posts and use the quote tags so that your part of the conversation still bears some relevance. For example if I wanted to quote you I would use something like:

Code: [ Select ]
[quote="dr nick"]All the stuff you said that I am quoting[/quote]


Which would result in something like:

dr nick wrote:
All the stuff you said that I am quoting


Then after you quote someone you can say what is on your mind as it will make sense to everyone.

Maybe I should make the FAQ areas easier to find?

http://www.ozzu.com/faq.php
http://www.ozzu.com/faq.php?mode=bbcode

One thing I should mention though, is all the forums allow you to edit posts except for the competition forum.
  • b_heyer
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I know the whole user friendly shnag and all that stuff, but honestly, if one are a webmaster it seems obsurd that one would not be able to navigate a simple forum, no insult to you but rtfm comes to mind for people who don't know how to use forums.

Like I said I know that user friendly is key for keeping users active, but thats like bringing a fully functional forum to todler level.
  • Bigwebmaster
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I definetely think I can improve the pull down jump menu's though. I agree with you there on how that can be slightly confusing if you do not know the layout of the forum. So I will try to look into fixing that eventually here.
  • ATNO/TW
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I can see the navigation problems for newbies.
My girlfriend is one of them.

The key is to click a few links and do a little reading. The phpBB Group even added a pretty good help option to assist.

Like b_heyer said, anyone who is a webmaster should be able to figure out how to navigate this place, but as I have learned from my own board, not everyone has ever visited a forum before and this place has SO MUCH STUFF it can be a little overwhelming at first glance.

I know what I'm doing and it still took me a bit to figure out how to do most of the stuff this program offers and I'm still learning. And if someone is educated enough to add additional modules and hacks to make the place rock, it can get even more complicated.

As stated a few moments ago -- "reading is fundamental" (OK...I didn't say it exactly like that, but that's the gist of it.)

For what it's worth -- that's how I learned to use this board (and quite a few other things! :lol: )
  • b_heyer
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Post 3+ Months Ago

ehehehe you know you just wanna go:

RTFM
  • dr nick
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Post 3+ Months Ago

b_heyer wrote:
I know the whole user friendly shnag and all that stuff, but honestly, if one are a webmaster it seems obsurd that one would not be able to navigate a simple forum, no insult to you but rtfm comes to mind for people who don't know how to use forums.


Well sure it doesn't take much for a generally experienced user to find out where and what all the little details do, soon they become second nature. But that's exactly the point, something that's second nature to anybody with experience with forums could still present an initial hiccup or two for anyone without too much experience. If newbies aren't a goal for your forum, then its not a problem.

I just remember during my first days at University commenting on the small desk spaces for notepads, etc., and my supervisor at the time explicitly told me to write down all the niggly little details because within a few weeks they'd all be forgotten and nobody would remember how the lecture halls etc. could be improved...

But really...its not a big deal.

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