cloudy cloudy

Author Topic: Forum etiquette and politeness (Part 2)  (Read 15541 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Rosswm

  • Posts: 154
  • Pietermaritzburg, South Africa
Re: Forum etiquette and politeness (Part 2)
« Reply #15 on: January 17, 2011, 03:06:39 PM »
Hi , I am a relatively new member (Jan 2009) and  battled patiently etc to get all working as I had never had a station before and this was new to me as well.
I cannot fault WD , Windy or the forum and 100% of my queries , problems have all been resolved timeously.
A special thanks again to Windy for all the hard work that he does for the benefit of all of us weather watchers.

Great job done and keep up the good work.

Offline drobbins

  • Posts: 1,694
  • Kentucky, USA
    • Cave Country Weather
Re: Forum etiquette and politeness (Part 2)
« Reply #16 on: January 17, 2011, 03:20:00 PM »
Well, I will stick my neck out here…
First it needs to be defined what the purpose of this forum is.
A.   Does it operate like a club with each member sharing ideas and making contributions to the whole group as their skills allow? If so, why do some of the club member get to charge $ for their contributions and others do not? It is not a club.
B.   Is it a support forum for purchased software? Yes. That is what is stated under the software’s “Help” tab. Just like when you buy anything, you expect it to #1 work out of the box, and #2 has help provided if there are issues.

Now etiquette is also a two way street. A statement like this is insulting to someone who is having issues and is frustrated already:
I use WD's webcamcapture program and movie maker program myself on a W7 Atom CPU PC and it works great for me.

I make brake rotors for cars. If a customer has a shimmy in his steering while applying the brakes. I do not respond “Hmmm.. The same designed of rotors work fine on my car”. That does not make the issue go away. Saying that others on this forum are expected to provide support is also like me saying “Your neighbor also had a shimmy in his steering go ask him”. Why would the neighbor be expected to fix you car? You did not buy it from him. Maybe he will be nice and work on it for you, but the cause of the shimmy might have been totally different for him.

I know that Brian is a one man show and that there is no possible way for him to test the software on the millions of possible computer configurations. That also works the other way around. Just because it does work on 99% of the configurations, doesn’t mean it will work on my computer. It is possible that my particular computer configuration is causing conflicts. And even if I did do something wrong, how was I to know better? Where are the instructions that I did not follow? As I have proven to myself many times, WD is not idiot proof.  :wink:

I know that Brian spent much time working on the new compiler version last year, but as an end user, I do not see much difference from the earlier version. There may be prettier graphs and run smother behind the scenes, but I can not tell any difference. It is Brian’s software and his company, so he can run the business as he sees fit. As a paying customer I think a user manual and troubleshooting guide would benefit me much more

I also have concerns for my investment in the future. Not just the investment in the WD software, but my entire website that I spent 3 years building that relies on the WD software. Brian may want to retire someday, or get frustrated with the whole project, and the people who can’t figure it out on their own, and quit, or he might win the lottery. How long after that would/could WD users survive?

I am not saying any of this to bash or put down Brian. I believe he truly provides the best support for his product that he can and then some. But each time someone new buys WD, it another who needs support and the existing system is already overloaded.

Offline Welly

  • Posts: 428
  • Rob
  • Wellington, Shropshire. England
    • Wellington Weather
Re: Forum etiquette and politeness (Part 2)
« Reply #17 on: January 17, 2011, 10:48:46 PM »
Here's a few points I would like to make:

This forum is called the Weather-Watch Forum and not the Weather Display Forum, so I actually view this as not just a support forum for Weather Display, but, yes, a club of like minded people with a common interest.

There are plenty of people who do share knowledge and experience with others. I'd say nearly all of us not professional programmers. Sometimes posts don't go answered because we just don't know the solution to the problem.

There are lots of folks writing free scripts with plenty of support. I myself did one a while ago, let me tell you it's hard work and can be a bit demoralizing when all you get are people wanting immediate fixes to problems - no one here has a team of software engineers to help with debugging and most of the programmers are learning as they go along. Every new release should be viewed as a beta, with some issues being dealt with with a higher priority than others.

I agree this forum does host support for a few paid for applications (not just from Brian), but as far as I can see they all offer a stable release so folks can have a fairly reliable platform and not take part in helping with the development of said software. If you expect flawless working, keep away from the new releases.

To keep on topic, I would advise not to write posts when you are frustrated, but leave it a while, as normally, in the cold light of day, you regret what is said in haste.

Offline Objector

  • Posts: 386
  • Dalton, Georgia, USA
    • Dalton Georgia Weather
Re: Forum etiquette and politeness (Part 2)
« Reply #18 on: January 17, 2011, 11:32:08 PM »
Hi All,

First off, I'm not posting to make anyone mad.

I think that Weather Display works extremley well and that Brian does a great job supporting it. The major issues are addressed quickly and the little/odd ones have to wait. Those that can't be reproduced have to wait until someone or something sheds enough light to be able to do something. Sometimes they get overlooked in all these posts too. The fact that he is a "one man show" doesn't appear to be that big a negative for me or most users. If anything, think about that from his standpoint. I also agree with what someone else said in that "nobody is going to die if your website displays a bad number or you lost a little info". This is afterall a hobby and the software is written for that particular purpose. If your weather data is that critical I suspect you don't have the right monitoring equipment either.

Also, people who insist on continously updating ARE going to experience more problems than people who leave well enough alone and the vast majority of issues I see are from people using the latest versions. I personally ran my last version for 14 to 16 months before just recently upgrading. Since this version appears to give me all I want, I'll probably run it for a long time too.

As to the members of this forum helping others, They are great at it and many contribute amazing scripts, etc. that a great number are using on their sites to boot. Rarely have I not had any responses to an issue, and when I didn't, I survived very well. Remember, NOBODY is obligated to help me, you, or anyone else and that goes for Brian too. They do it because they enjoy this hobby. As to sales and money, Exactly how much an hour do you think Brian is actually making if you total all WD sales and divide by the amount of time he puts into it?

Lastly, the idea that there is some business model out there that Brian needs to go to or that writing a newer help file/manual will magically solve everything is fantasy. There are simply too many different PC configurations, weather stations, etc.  and people forever requesting enhancements for that to ever solve things. The best approach to getting started with/using WD is to load one version, systematically work through setting up the parts you want/need, report any issues giving plenty of specific information and be patient for answers. Once you have things working well, LEAVE IT ALONE until there is a REAL reason to upgrade.

Like I said, I didn't post this to make anyone mad.....

Offline chucl1932

  • Posts: 410
  • Nampa, Idaho
Re: Forum etiquette and politeness (Part 2)
« Reply #19 on: January 18, 2011, 12:55:13 AM »
i was typing a reply to this thread. But after reading your's, I stopped typing. You said everything I was about to say and you said it BETTER. I started using WD in the fall of 2002. I have not upgraded to the new compiler as the old one does all that I need. There are a few old timers on here that only upgrade every year or so.
thanks for saying what I wanted to say only you said it much better.