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Modern forum software: Discourse

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curious to know a bit more about the context of the OP, i mean are we talking about the platform from a technical/support perspective, or is it the content, or the 'look and feel' of the site (as a 'user'), or are they just disappointed to see the same old faces.

What is it that's expected of a forum (any forum)?  AFAICS its all about the content and whether or not its relevant to you.  Of course the community can (and does) have a big impact but seems like this is the point where DC differs significantly from a lot of other forums (cos we have a good one :Thmbsup:)

The one thing that I have gotten increasingly more uncomfortable with as I get older, as a general concept in all areas of life, is "clutter".  And it's fair to say that DC has accumulated a lot of clutter over the years. It makes it hard to find stuff and hard for new users to feel comfortable.  Unfortunately, for better or worse, DC is an eclectic place and it's hard (for me at least) to figure out ways to substantially reduce the clutter without causing real harm.

@mouser: Where you wrote:
...Unfortunately, for better or worse, DC is an eclectic place and it's hard (for me at least) to figure out ways to substantially reduce the clutter without causing real harm.

--- End quote ---
"Clutter" might not necessarily be the correct term, if it is referring to forum content.
What DCF currently seems to be could be regarded as not just a CMS, but rather a self-contained treasure-trove - a valuable/useful "knowledge base" - consisting of various content - including discussions which, in many cases, lead to improved definition of the knowledge documented.

This point is perhaps best appreciated when, during a discussion on (say) "SubjectX", some research using the (rather kludgy) forum search function or (better) a search using < SubjectX> can rapidly turn up relevant links within the forum and which can then be sifted through to see what's new/old information to help better-inform the discussion.

Once I decided that I might be able to contribute something that could be useful - for myself and to the forum - I started doing the various "Mini-Reviews" of different software, so that relevant new knowledge could be related/attached - which is why I update the reviews with cross-posts to the relevant post/comment where someone has made a fragmentary post/comment about the same subject as the review.

What I effectively did there was make a unilateral decision to assume the role of a kind of unofficial curator - i.e., having created a review, I would then try to keep it current, updating the review from time to time, with new/additional knowledge relevant to the software being reviewed.

I did this deliberately, because I saw how some really quite good/useful reviews had been done by forum members in the past, but many of these seemed to just peter out with the passage of time, sometimes starting up years later in a separate, disconnected thread with people attempting to re-invent wheels. I'm not saying that there should have been, but there was no implicit discipline upon the authors (or the admins) to keep the things they wrote about updated/consolidated and relatively current - which seemed potentially a great waste, to me. If there is any "clutter", then I suspect that that is where the clutter lies - i.e., as fragmented bits of seemingly unconnected knowledge scattered across the knowledge base - but these bits of knowledge may well be relevant to each other and could be usefully interconnected if there was a librarian involved, using some kind of artificial framework of reference - e.g., a structured taxonomy (scheme of classification).

The question then might well be"What sort of taxonomy?", but I don't have the answer, though I do have some thoughts on it.

Returning to the OP, therefore, I suspect that "Modern forum software" isn't the issue/problem - in fact it probably isn't an issue/problem at all. The real issue might be better phrased as (say) "addressing what the requirements are for this forum in the future, given that where we have arrived at today is arguably a self-contained treasure-trove - a valuable/useful 'knowledge base' ".
However, it might be that, on reflection, the general consensus is that this base is not actually as valuable as one might have argued, and it should therefore (say) be scrubbed clean of detritus/clutter and a fresh, modern, new and empty CMS implemented with a provisional index to the historical and static archive of the old content - i.e., no "halfway house".

... using the (rather kludgy) forum search function ...-IainB (June 26, 2017, 11:26 PM)
--- End quote ---

Got to agree with this, I have yet to have it return the item I want when sorted by the default Relevant, always have to go into Advanced, sort by date, and quick scan the results.

I thought there was not a single human in the universe that thought that the 'old guard forums' were better than Discourse. But @tuxman proved me wrong. Ok, no need to go any further on my side :). I'll go back under my rock where I have been the last 5 years :) :). I do think the content of DC is also somewhat 'stuck in time'. I think the time when finding cool desktop apps (on windows) was a thing. There were discounts, great reviews, interesting people thinking about usability... They are probably still here, but the paradigm is just not interesting to me at all. Not only because I'm on linux: web apps kinda made desktop apps redundant in all but a few use cases IMHO.


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