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Modern forum software: Discourse

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Hi guys,

This is a 'back from the death' post after many years innactive. Looks like the internet has moved on and there's now far more modern forum software. I like Discourse, but there must be others... The thing is that this community feels like a 90's forum and this may be slowing its growth. I'm talking as a single person here, YMMV, but... DC lost me years ago, I wonder how much the software had anything to do with it.

Urlwolf, it's great to hear from you.  :-*

I've spent the last couple of months working on the upgrade of the website to a proper modernish cms, which is many years overdue, so I am not unsympathetic to the issue.

On the other hand, I think the forum software we use (SMF) is a good functional match for the site.

Let's face it, this site and forum is in many ways a throwback to the early 2000s.  For good and bad that's the nature of the site, anchored in some ways by the content, the established userbase, and the funding mechanism.

I'm keenly interested in making sure that DonationCoder can live on indefinitely, and that means making sure to keep the forum upgraded and running smoothly, and finally moving to a proper CMS for the website, but I'm less interested in getting everything super modernized.  It's not that I'm resisting modernization based on an aesthetic as much as the fact that with our limited resources, chasing modernity is a very low priority.

And I am resistant to changes that trade off some of the less-and-less-common strengths of this forum for strengths that are more easily found elsewhere.  So while there are some wonderful new modern community platforms (discourse, stack overflow) that are fantastic at what they do, and facilitate certain kinds of information exchanges -- it may be that our purpose in life is to maintain some of the old ways.

That's not to say that i'm uninterested in pursuing other new, more modern, website/coding projects that might be related to DC in spirit and live alongside it, so if anyone has ideas please share them!

And of course if there are functional features that you'd like to see on the forum or website I'm always interested in hearing about them.

ps. Here was a discussion from 2015 on new modern forum software like Discourse, and whether we should move to it:

To me, the forum should be based around the content, instead of the features, necessarily.  What strikes me about DC is that I go to other SMF forums, and it's night and day as far as the features.  I also use Discourse, and infinite scroll has become a bane.  I truly don't think that forum software of choice drives people away.  If anything, it is the need for a redesign of the site - it does look a bit dated.  But I don't think that anyone goes "I'm not going to sign up for that site because it uses SMF"

What strikes me about DC is that I go to other SMF forums, and it's night and day as far as the features.
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Can you elaborate? I can't tell if you're saying that DC is better or worse  :P


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