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  • Quote from: Pete at May 22, 2009, 04:56 PM

    Again, from the average MODx user’s perspective though, a lot of us aren’t going to know what SVN is let alone be confident enough to use it (well I do as it happens, but not everyone would be able to for sure) so all I was suggesting is that even a monthly update - even if it doesn’t say much or show more than the odd screenshot here and there - would show some activity. Again, I know there’s plenty of activity in reality, but it’s not coming across on the website - you have to come here to the forums to see that, or know a bit about the history of the project and the team to know that.

    Since this is an open-source project, completely funded and built on user contributions, we graciously accept and encourage either donations to pay for the labor required to upkeep and do the requests you’ve made, or volunteer-contributed works that will fulfill those stated requirements. Since no one pays for this product, service, or website. laugh

    Snarkiness aside, in this community, things get done faster when you contribute. If you’ve not contributed, the core team is less likely to move on your suggestions. Why? Because, well, this is a community - not a consumer market. If you’d like to see more done to the MODx.Browser implementation in Revo, then I recommend posting that in JIRA, visiting and posting in the MODx Next forum, checking out the latest SVN for Revo, and getting to know the community.

    And in response to your last post, I’ll just add links where appropriate:

    "Again, from the average MODx user’s perspective though, a lot of us aren’t going to know what SVN is let alone be confident enough to use it (well I do as it happens, but not everyone would be able to for sure) ... even if it doesn’t say much or show more than the odd screenshot here and there ... Again, I know there’s plenty of activity in reality, but it’s not coming across on the website - you have to come here to the forums to see that, or know a bit about the history of the project and the team to know that."

    (By the way, all the links are either main or left-side navigational items on the main website.)

    We hope you find your time here with us at MODx helpful, and we do take your suggestions into consideration. We also, however, ask from our users that they contribute as well. It helps us all. smiley

    Thanks for your thoughts.
      shaun mccormick | bigcommerce mgr of software engineering, former modx co-architect | github | splittingred.com
    • http://modxcms.com/community/happening-now/ - very useful link indeed in terms of showing activity - also EXTREMELY well buried (in the sense that it’s the 9th link down on the last menu item across the top of the page - I know technically there’s only two clicks to get there before someone points that out wink). Should be on the homepage perhaps in a more condensed form?

      All I’ve been trying to say is that if you can’t find things like this in obvious places, it’ll turn a lot of people away. People looking for a CMS aren’t going to click through pages to find things that are on many sites’ homepages to find out stuff like that. Businesses will be looking to adopt a CMS that’s up-to-date, and I know from my experience that business-people can get twitchy when they see things like "2008-12-23" as the date the latest version was released - which is fair enough - but then not see an obvious link to news updates on the homepage. I’ve had a few people ask me if it’s even being updated any more because it’s not immediately obvious and business-people often have little time to check things out in this level of detail (of course I’ve talked them round and it’s in use across a dozen sites that I’ve built). That page you linked to above is gold dust in terms of showing what’s going on and I’d not even seen it before!

      Since this is an open-source project, completely funded and built on user contributions, we graciously accept and encourage either donations to pay for the labor required to upkeep and do the requests you’ve made, or volunteer-contributed works that will fulfill those stated requirements. Since no one pays for this product, service, or website.

      I get that - I’ve been here a while and even contributed a forum bridge that’s sorely in need of an update wink Seems to be a bit of defensiveness around here when people make occasionally-blunt suggestions (forum posts, as with SMS messages, lose all emotion in translation sadly, so imagine an encouraging tone rather than a blunt one to my posts laugh). All I’m trying to do is comment on what might get more NEW people to check out MODx which would then hopefully turn into more contributors for you. If I had a team of web guys working for me I’d happily donate resources and time, and if I had a few beans to scrape together right at the moment I’d donate money, but both are sadly lacking at present.

      Snarkiness aside, in this community, things get done faster when you contribute. If you’ve not contributed, the core team is less likely to move on your suggestions. Why? Because, well, this is a community - not a consumer market. If you’d like to see more done to the MODx.Browser implementation in Revo, then I recommend posting that in JIRA, visiting and posting in the MODx Next forum, checking out the latest SVN for Revo, and getting to know the community.

      I’ve got plenty of little things to contribute, as well as bigger things like an IPB forum bridge which is 95% done for IPB 2.3.6, however as with you guys time is precious and currently I have extremely little to spare, otherwise I would love to post up everything I’ve done on MODx in the past few years.

      Also this part of your quote doesn’t come across well - "If you’ve not contributed, the core team is less likely to move on your suggestions". So... that reads as "if you’re an end-user and have feedback on our product in terms of usability, but aren’t a coder or other form of contributor contributing to the project then we won’t take your suggestions as seriously" for that particular situation. Again, a bit blunt there (sorry), but giving preference to the people who know how to use the software already isn’t necessarily going to evolve it into something that everyone can stand a chance of adopting. Getting opinions from the wiser audience in terms of questionnaires and polls (plenty of free survey systems out there) could gain valuable information as well as useful suggestions you might not have thought of!

      Again, I know it’s community-driven, but the community isn’t "visible" on the homepage (again, I get that there’s a link - you know what I mean). You have to dig around to see activity or come to the forums to make suggestions when there could be polling happening on the homepage for example (I realise of course that by now my version of the homepage would have everything under the sun on it laugh).

      Going to those links you provided (cheers for that), not everyone is going to look at Jira, because it won’t make much sense to non-technical people, same with SVN like I said earlier - much of the user-base for MODx know the basics to install the software, tweak the templates a bit and write some content - not everyone’s a developer. The other links were useful though, thanks.

      The impresion I sometimes get viewing these forums is something along the lines of "if you’ve used it, you’ll understand why it’s the best" (and at present it is the best without a doubt for my complex needs), but that’s the stumbling block - there could be more people testing and adopting it if the homepage had a little more action on it. I know it’s had x-hundred-thousand-or-more downloads as well so isn’t exactly unpopular, but what’s the harm in doubling or tripling that in half the time eh? wink

      Think this might be better off split off from this topic now - slightly OT grin
        Notanotherdotcom Ltd

        Web | Print | Marketing
      • Quote from: Pete at May 23, 2009, 09:04 AM

        All I’ve been trying to say is that if you can’t find things like this in obvious places, it’ll turn a lot of people away. People looking for a CMS aren’t going to click through pages to find things that are on many sites’ homepages to find out stuff like that. Businesses will be looking to adopt a CMS that’s up-to-date, and I know from my experience that business-people can get twitchy when they see things like "2008-12-23" as the date the latest version was released - which is fair enough - but then not see an obvious link to news updates on the homepage. I’ve had a few people ask me if it’s even being updated any more because it’s not immediately obvious and business-people often have little time to check things out in this level of detail (of course I’ve talked them round and it’s in use across a dozen sites that I’ve built). That page you linked to above is gold dust in terms of showing what’s going on and I’d not even seen it before!
        We just created it in the last week. You really have a lot of good advice TBH. How about joining the team officially and doing some of the work to make it happen? We’re not asking for serious time commitments; anything would help. And re:
        business-people often have little time to check things out in this level of detail
        ...well, that about explains the current state of the world, now doesn’t it?

        And truly, we’re ok with not getting a lot of consumer traffic at this point. Our goal has been to attract sufficient developer resources for both core framework and component development. Neither of which I am satisfied we have achieved at this point. This will make or break the future of the project IMO.

        Quote from: Pete at May 23, 2009, 09:04 AM

        Since this is an open-source project, completely funded and built on user contributions, we graciously accept and encourage either donations to pay for the labor required to upkeep and do the requests you’ve made, or volunteer-contributed works that will fulfill those stated requirements. Since no one pays for this product, service, or website.

        I get that - I’ve been here a while and even contributed a forum bridge that’s sorely in need of an update wink Seems to be a bit of defensiveness around here when people make occasionally-blunt suggestions (forum posts, as with SMS messages, lose all emotion in translation sadly, so imagine an encouraging tone rather than a blunt one to my posts laugh). All I’m trying to do is comment on what might get more NEW people to check out MODx which would then hopefully turn into more contributors for you. If I had a team of web guys working for me I’d happily donate resources and time, and if I had a few beans to scrape together right at the moment I’d donate money, but both are sadly lacking at present.
        When you invest as much time and effort into something as we have, you get easily defensive when someone suggests you should change. And it’s nothing personal, just general bitterness with regard to increasing interest in using (and getting support for) the product which is strangely coinciding with an inability to get the existing stakeholders to invest back into the project.

        Quote from: Pete at May 23, 2009, 09:04 AM

        Also this part of your quote doesn’t come across well - "If you’ve not contributed, the core team is less likely to move on your suggestions". So... that reads as "if you’re an end-user and have feedback on our product in terms of usability, but aren’t a coder or other form of contributor contributing to the project then we won’t take your suggestions as seriously" for that particular situation. Again, a bit blunt there (sorry), but giving preference to the people who know how to use the software already isn’t necessarily going to evolve it into something that everyone can stand a chance of adopting. Getting opinions from the wiser audience in terms of questionnaires and polls (plenty of free survey systems out there) could gain valuable information as well as useful suggestions you might not have thought of!
        We get plenty of these suggestions, so I doubt us getting a little frustrated about the decreasing contributions in the midst of increasing popularity is this real problem here. And I like your reading of Shaun’s quote above. I think he’s just being honest. We are much less likely to pay attention to you if you don’t make an effort to take your idea through to fruition. Isn’t this the whole idea of Open Source communities, you get back out of it what you put in? Even if you can’t contribute code, surely you can take what you have managed to understand and turn that into useful documentation or a short blog post, or maybe even a quick tips and tricks website. All the effort that all of us have put into these arguments could have probably been better spent on a new tutorial or component or regression test.

        Quote from: Pete at May 23, 2009, 09:04 AM

        Going to those links you provided (cheers for that), not everyone is going to look at Jira, because it won’t make much sense to non-technical people, same with SVN like I said earlier - much of the user-base for MODx know the basics to install the software, tweak the templates a bit and write some content - not everyone’s a developer. The other links were useful though, thanks.

        The impresion I sometimes get viewing these forums is something along the lines of "if you’ve used it, you’ll understand why it’s the best" (and at present it is the best without a doubt for my complex needs), but that’s the stumbling block - there could be more people testing and adopting it if the homepage had a little more action on it. I know it’s had x-hundred-thousand-or-more downloads as well so isn’t exactly unpopular, but what’s the harm in doubling or tripling that in half the time eh? wink
        The bottom-line is we are trying to attract a greater number of technical stakeholders who can invest time, code, and/or documentation back into the project in a collaborative way with the team. As the community increases in size, the demand for support increases, so far, the core team has not grown in proportion. And if we are currently slow to try and attract a new onslaught of unskilled consumers to place additional demands on our small team at this time, I think you can forgive us. Ultimately, when we feel the product is ready for that kind of attention, we will turn on the spotlights and turn up the marketing broadcast volume.

        First we need help realizing solutions for things like native forums (no offense on the forum bridges, but bridging user systems in PHP simply is for the birds), documentation needs to be produced/improved, and on and on and on. I could work on this stuff 24hrs a day and never get ahead, as I’m sure you realize.
        • Jason,

          I think this thread has gone a bit more far ranging than the resource editor.

          I’d just like to pick up on your comment about the documentation.

          There is a wealth of information in the forums and most of us quickly realize that if we trawl thru it or ask questions we’ll get the info we need pretty quickly. Many of us have even contributed tutes to the forums, but they pretty wuickly get buried with all the other posts.

          If only there was a way to collate all this info and present it in logical documents.

          EG Kongondo’s recent work on "The (almost) Complete Guide to Creating Menus in MODx Using Wayfinder"
          http://modxcms.com/forums/index.php/topic,34176.msg214175.html#msg214175
          is a monumental piece of work, and will probably help countless Modx users.

          However we need something like that for just about every major plugin, module and snippet. (And I fully realise how big a task that would be.)

          Then there are also things like FURLs. http://modxcms.com/forums/index.php/topic,4700.0.html
          Currently 20 pages long and which you’ve just locked down.

          If we could only get the documentation sorted to the level that kongondo did for wayfinder, then that would most likely reduce the amount of questions in the forums and free up everybody’s time.

          Of course it is chicken and egg. You have to spend the time collating and presenting the info in the present to save time in the future.

          Perhaps you could start some sort of registry listing the items that get the most questions and ask for volunteers pick one and start the documentation. (Any one item would probably need to be collaborative anyway. The fact that kongondo did his guide all by himself is a Herculean feat.)

          (Yes I know there’s the wiki but it just never seemed to catch on.)

          Anyway, what I’m trying to suggest in a round about way is that the Modx core team doesn’t necessarily have to do all the documentation. You could just say to the community here’s what we need, or here are the most asked about items, please get together and create the documentation.

          You could even priotize it. EG Start with the top 10 most pressing items and don’t add another until one or more of them get done to a standard you or the people writing the doc are happy with.

          I could go on, but I think I’ve rambled enough for now.

          smiley











            Content Creator and Copywriter
          • Some excellent points. Remember Jason’s main point, though, which is that there is a plan to make MODx much more accessible to new users, but this isn’t the ideal time to implement it. If you have a small group of engineers designing a car, you don’t want to pull them off the job to write an operators manual, especially when you don’t have enough of them to begin with. You especially don’t want to attract a whole bunch of naive users who will swamp the engineers with questions about how to set up the presets on the radio.

            There’s also the question of whether to try get the Wiki to "catch on" or start over with some other documentation. Everett and others have done a tremendous amount of impressive work on the Wiki and there’s a wealth of information there. It’s hard to find, though, because of the Wiki’s lack of navigation tools, less-than-optimum organization, and weak search function. I think that’s all correctable but it would take an expert in Wiki design and organization (which leaves a lot of us out).

            You’re right about the forums, too. I try to pull out some of the most useful information from forum posts and put it up at bobsguides.com as I have time, but it’s a monumental task.

            Remember, too, that the current incarnation of modxcms.com is brand new and will, in theory, fulfill a lot of your suggestions as it becomes more mature.

            In addition, MODx 2.0 Revolution allows for add-ons (snippets, plugins, etc.) to self-install and interact with the user during installation. The Revo version of SPForm, for example, installs a working contact form on your site automatically, so the need for documentation is significantly reduced.

            Your most important point (if I’m understanding you), though, is a really good one: That people who want to contribute don’t know how and we need to do a better job of guiding them. Just saying "read the bug and request reports and jump in" clearly isn’t going to do it. So far, though, nobody has come up with the time and skills to improve the situation.

            Thanks for taking the time to express your opinions. We look forward to your further contributions. smiley
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