Idea: thread sorter

By Tedster
Sep 27, 2008
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  1. I came up with an idea today that might help threads be placed in the proper forums since improper posting has been going on for a long time. (At least in the three years I have been on TS.)

    Before anyone can post a thread, they have to answer a short questionnaire in order to have the thread posted in the correct forum. TS will then post it in the proper area based upon the answer given.

    For example:

    Is this post
    1. A security question? (then it gets posted in the security forum.)
    2. A video or audio thread? (then it gets posted in the audio/ video forum)
    3. A motherboard question (etc... and so on and so forth)

  2. rf6647

    rf6647 TS Maniac Posts: 829

    It is worth a try. Should the sorting questions be posed after constructing the new post as part of the "submit"? Once the struggle to compose the question has been completed, one may do a better job of making a choice with the post right before them.
  3. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Topic Starter Posts: 6,000   +15

    I think it could be done before or after submission either way could work. Although I imagine a smart filter could do away with questions and sort the thread.... but so many posts are poorly written that a filter might have difficulty. You could also have a smart filter combined with a questionnaire if the filter cannot determine.
  4. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,524

    Hmm, what if there were a few issues? As an example post:
    "My Windows won't start since a virus attack, this is a used laptop"
    The member may then answer the question "Mobile computing?" or some other question. Which may place the thread in the wrong area.

    I believe the original thread starter should choose the best location, themselves.
    Although I did like that idea too.
  5. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 11,462   +1,760

    That's great, artificial Intelligence to combat the lack of the natural variety. No wonder we piss "Skynet" off so bad. I'm just sayin'.
  6. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Topic Starter Posts: 6,000   +15

    I think some kind of questionnaire still would work. The algorithm could be set up to ask the user to pick the most relevant topic if more than one was identified. But this is good stuff and folks are think'n !
  7. CCT

    CCT TS Evangelist Posts: 2,653   +6

    I think the best thing would be that people can introduce themselves BUT that area cannot receive responses.

    You wanna post a problem in that area, the walls are sound proof!

  8. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 11,462   +1,760

    Perhaps automatic linking from a brief questionnaire to the "guides and solved issues" section might be helpful. This coupled with the standard, "was this page helpful", to link back to the intake page.

    I do think that introducing a formal system such as is being discussed, could possibly make the process too impersonal for newcomers, and less satisfying for existing members.
  9. DaMak420

    DaMak420 TS Rookie Posts: 189

    I can honestly say... I am a fairly experienced forum troll... in all the forums i visit, I have well over 20,000 posts (in the last 4 years, anything else is too old to matter)

    If I had to fill out a questionnaire to post a topic, every time, I would certainly want to stop posting.

    NOW.... that being said....... If a Member had say....... *UNDER* 50 posts on these boards... and they had to fill out a questionnaire.... It would not affect me, or many of the other non-challenged people, and would force first, and/or only time posters, to at least post in the proper section.

    Just my .02.
  10. Julio Franco

    Julio Franco TechSpot Editor Posts: 7,028   +613

    I don't even know if this feature is available for vB (without custom coding) but personally I'd be bugged to have fill a questionnaire if I was a new member in a tech forum.

    I agree with the original intention but I think bad posting behavior still represents a minority and we could potentially discriminate good new members by enforcing this kind of system on them.
  11. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,524

    Actually there is one tinsy little thing

    New members are directed to "Introduce yourself" already with a "Hello"
    I wonder if this statement (for brand new members signing up) could actually make it very clear (wording) to post an Introduction of themselves only, not their computer fault, as many do
  12. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 11,462   +1,760

    At Least it's Attention.....

    I'm not certain a misplaced thread by a beginner is the big deal that it's being made out to be. As it stands now, the senior members get to scold and welcome a newbie all in the same post. Normal etiquette usually prevails, and the newcomer is presented with the proper forum to have his needs met.

    Whilst I appreciate that somehow an automated intake system could be implemented, there is no substitute for personal contact. It could be further said that how a newcomer approaches and reacts to greeting and/or redirection can be an insight to his or her character as well.

    That said, it is a testiment to the fact that our people give so much of their time and effort, that fatigue is likely to set in for any one of them, at any time. So the idea of automation being applied to an intake procedure, is a much a symptom of that fatigue and collateral frustration, as it is of the necessity for it.

    Throughout this thread a nagging thought has been in the back of my mind, something on the order of this, "just because we can do something by computer,doesn't mean we should".
  13. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Topic Starter Posts: 6,000   +15

    that is why you have a short menu.
    I can't really see selecting an item from a menu as really too bothersome. Heck I would see the menu as limited to perhaps 10 choices at best. And if a smart filter was integrated, a menu might be skipped altogether.

    I find it even more bothersome reading posts in the wrong forums!

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